Pathfinder Campaign Setting: Paths of Prestige

Sylvyana the Ghoul Queen's page

59 posts. Alias of Kileanna.


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I am hunting for your soul
It dwells within your heart
I lacerate your pounding flesh
Your spirits shall be mine

So rise my spirits rise
Revel in this dead man's body
Grip his soul, sip the blood
Life in death
A holy carnage


Chromantic Durgon <3 wrote:
Why else are all the bad guys crusty old men and women?

Who are you calling crusty and old?


It's simple. This is MY war. I AM right. Whoever opposes me is wrong.

Moral Standard: Don't try to fix what is not broken.


I am not a goddess, so I will hold a grudge and plot revenge against whoever I want! (Specially elves)

Moral Standard: He who sows winds, shall reap whirlwinds.


Dalindra is banned for granting wishes on the wrong thread.
And also because banning her brings so much joy to me!


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I didn't summon purple worms this time. There are no wizards around demanding to be swallowed whole.


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Who has glued a smelly beard into my bottom while I was sleeping?
Someone's paying for this!


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Lady Audrey Strongshield wrote:
Shut up, Witch. Your magic shouldn't exist.

Posting with that alias feels creepy today. She was a relevant NPC for about 8 years, she leveled from level one to 20.

Yesterday I had a solo session to see how some NPCs where affected by some recent events from a campaign.
I played this evil elven lady that is posting right now. And I killed Lady Audrey with her. I summoned 2 purple worms on her and she was never able to break the grapple or cast any spells. A pathetic end for a Wizard with caster level 17 (highly unoptimized).
I should be sad but I was too amused.


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And this is the last chapter on Sylvyana's and Va'ardalia's story. I liked to give some parts a reminiscence of a fairytale, so you might see some resemblances with some popular tales here.

SYLVYANA AND VA'ARDALIA SILVANOS

Sisteena was a privileged member of the House of Servitude, as being the personal maiden of the Queen was probably the highest position a mere servant could aspire to have.

The Queen trusted her as an assistant and confident, and when she had to depart to the capital in a hurry, it was her who was left in charge of her newborn daughter.
As soon as the Queen left, more members of the Royal Guard appeared and commanded all servants in the Queen's palace to go with them and take all the baby's belongings with them. Sisteena obeyed, but she refused to hand them over the Princess by any means. She didn't know what was going on but she didn't like it.

After a long trip they arrived to a newly built tower in the middle of nowhere. They told them that it had been built at the King's command for the Queen and the Princess, so when the latter was born both could rest unmolested for a time and the Queen could recover in a quiet place. Some powerful magic enchantments had been placed to protect the tower and ensure that it was an appropriate place to them to rest. After seeing how the Queen had been taken to the capital, Sisteena found eveything suspicious. And she was right.

As soon as they arrived they were all trapped inside: the Princess, the servants, the members of the Royal Guard and the wizards and priests who had created the enchantments. It couldn't be an accident.

Everybody started to feel numb and dizzy. Sisteena tried to wake up the Princess from her cradle but couldn't. What was happening? The wizards said that the enchantments were working in a different way that they had planned: they were slowly inducing everybody in the tower into unconsciousness. Something was altering the magic they had created.

Sisteena watched horrified how the leader of the Royal Guard came to the conclusion that the baby had to be the focus of the alteration. He knew about the King's plans to get rid of the Queen to set his own dynasty. Realizing that everything had been a plan to get rid of his own daughter, the most faithful servants of the queen and everybody who knew too much wasn't difficult to him. He panicked realizing the King's betrayal, and came to the conclussion that the only way they could escape was by destroying the focus of the enchantment: the newborn child. He commanded his men to kill the baby so they could put an end to the magic effect and get out of there. (The saddest part is that he was wrong: the focus was not the baby but the cradle)

Sisteena ran upstairs to protect the baby Princess while chaos ensued at the lower levels, with the Royal Guards trying to fight their way through the mostly unarmed servants who tried desperately to avoid that an innocent child was ruthlessly murdered.

Sisteena heard them coming for the child. Outside, most of the servants were probably already dead. But before anything happened she felt her consciousness fading, and she felt to the tower's enchantment. The defenders had given the magic of the tower enough time to come into full effect and get everybody inside into eternal stasis.

Like that, the King was able to get rid of the legitimate heiress to the throne and any further liabilities without having to kill anybody. Elves don't kill elves, after all.
Centuries passed, and Sylvyana became a myth among elves, the kind of tale that is told to children so they behave: «be a good child or The Ghoul Queen will come and turn you into a Wichtlin». Most of her story was forgotten, and the tower where the Princess Va'ardalia rested was lost forever.

Until the Nightmare. At the beginning of the War of the Lance, the Speaker of the Stars Lorac Caladon, descendant of the traitor who had sent Sylvyana to exile, tried to protect his people from the war by controlling a powerful artifact called The Orb of Dragons. He had failed and attracted a Green Dragon who took control of a subdued Lorac to shape the whole nation into a twisted nightmare, full of corrupted creatures and undead.

All magic on Silvanesti was corrupted by the Nightmare and the Tower was no exception. After many centuries the tower was unlocked and its few survivors awakened, only to meet an horde of undead horrors who slayed everybody inside the tower. The servants who had only tried to defend themselves were beyond Chemosh's reach, and their souls departed freely to afterlife. But The Lord of Bones claimed everyone who had tried to kill the baby or turned against their kind and bound them as undead slaves to protect the tower.

Sisteena was the only exception. She had never separated from Va'ardalia, true to her promise to keep her safe, and she woke up at the top of the tower, next to the cradle of the now fully awake and hungry baby. She could hear the sound of the battle downstairs but she just grabbed the baby girl in her arms and didn't try to get out until everything went quiet.

She was scared, not knowing what had happened or how much time had passed. She finally ventured herself out of the room, holding Va'ardalia in her arms, just to jump into some undead monstrosities. She tried to get back but then she realized that the undead didn't even seem to notice her or the loudly crying baby. Shuddering in fear, she walked among the undead plaguing the tower unnoticed and walked outside unharmed.

Then she saw the twisted horror that the woods of Silvanesti had become. It wasn't just the tower that was plagued with undead. She had to get out of there.

Even if the undead didn't seem to notice her or the baby, there were a lot more perils in the wood, from corrupted animals and fey to the more mundane issue of getting food and water. And she was just a city girl who didn't know how to fight or hunt for food. Fortunately she found another elf. He was a strong well-built man, but he was no fighter either but another servant. He had been a carrier for a group of rangers and fighters who were sent to fight against the horrors of the Nightmare. All his group had been killed but him and he was trying to get out. He had food and water for a couple of weeks and weapons that he barely knew how to use. Together they had a chance to survive.

He was amused that Sisteena didn't know anything about what was happening in Silvanesti and had a hard time believing her story, but he decided not to think too hard about it until they were safe. He also thought it was a miracle that undead didn't notice them. Sisteena believed that the Gods of Light were protecting the Princess from them. The truth was close enough, the protection came from a god, but not from one of Light: Chemosh wouldn't let that his own creatures harmed the daughter of his Chosen.

It was thanks to this that they finally managed to get out of the cursed woods and join their people in exile. With the archives of Silvanesti lost and probably destroyed it wasn't difficult to pass as a newly married couple with a newborn child. Less than a year later, they married for real and soon they had a daughter of their own, Lynessa.

They couldn't tell the truth, as it would endanger both Va'ardalia and Sisteena so Va'ardalia grew up without knowing her real heritage but resembling her real mother more and more as she grew up.

She was fascinated by nobility and loved to pretend she was a princess in her childhood games (Lynessa was always the foolish knight she had to rescue). Sisteena encouraged it, teaching her how to behave like a noble the best she could, disguising it as teaching her how to be a best servant at a noble house. Sisteena expected Va'ardalia to be able to claim her birthright in the future, even though she also thought it was too dangerous for her and secretly hoped that it never happened.

But it happened. Va'ardalia had already attained nobility by her own means when she met Sylvyana.

Their first encounter was in the Ravenous Banquet, where Va'ardalia was affected by Sylvyana's allomanya and had a hard time avoiding to devour her fellow elves. Sylvyana tried to get her and when she was unable, tried to kidnap her foster sister Lynessa to lure her into her lair at Baleph. She needed Va'ardalia to be present at the ritual so she could protect her from becoming her undead servant. Sylvyana might be deranged but she wouldn't do that to her own daughter. In the end, unable to take Lynessa with her either, she played her last card: she told Va'ardalia that she had kidnapped her so-called parents and took them into Baleph. She believed it was a lie (it wasn't) but she didn't want to take the risk.

Va'ardalia didn't understand why the Ghoul Queen was so obsessed with her. But when they managed to free Reya from corruption she told Va'ardalia about her claims to be Va'ardalia's mother. The kagonesti warrior had been one of Va'ardalia's best friends and Sylvyana had questioned her thoroughly about her, so she was aware of everything. Va'ardalia thought the Ghoul Queen was insane, but she could use her obsession as a weapon against her.

And it was indeed her obsession with Va'ardalia what caused Sylvyana's downfall. During the fight against her, she made some obvious mistakes trying to approach her daughter, and it was because of Va'ardalia that she entered a house where they had set a trap against her. Va'ardalia used a scroll to cast Antimagic Field and allow her to be defeated.

But Va'ardalia was still worried about Sylvyana's claims. After rescueing her parents, she questioned Sisteena, who confirmed that everything she said was true. She had never known about the Ghoul Queen, just about Queen Sylvyana, as she was put into stasis before everything happened, and was shocked to see what her beloved and kind queen had become.

It was Va'ardalia who manipulated everybody so they took the decission of exiling Sylvyana to a realm that she was able to access (the Plane of Shadow) so she could go there to have a talk or two with her. She visited her many times before the Ghoul Queen managed to escape.

Since then, both have been secretly allied. Va'ardalia has accepted the Ghoul Queen at her side, disguised as her Kagonesti counselor, and introduced her into elven society. Sylvyana has aggreed to delay her plans to destroy the whole race to give her daughter a chance to claim her birthright and rule over all elves. Both are now plotting together and they make a powerful and determined couple. Va'ardalia has been slipping into darkness because of her mother's influence while Sylvyana could be on the path of redemption thanks to her daughter's benefic influence. Whatever happens next, it seems like both will rise or fall together.


Attendance
After Forever


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SYLVYANA, THE GHOUL QUEEN

Once upon a time there was an elven princess. Her name was Sylvyana, born of the purest race among Silvanesti elves. Since her birth she had known that one day she would be the Queen of all elves and had learned to perform her duties flawlessly. She was a kind and charming lady, and it was said that she was the most beautiful among all elves.

All men in Silvanesti would have loved to marry her, not just because of her charm and beauty but also because the elf who married her would reign at her side. But she had been promised at a young age to the first son of a noble family. That didn't worry the young princess, as she understood it was her duty as a Queen.
When she reached adulthood she was given, as a present, the government of the town of Alinosti, so she could learn to perform the duties of a ruler. And she did well, soon gaining a reputation for being a fair and caring leader.

She also opened many trade routes with humans, helping to increase the wealth of the nation. It was in one of her many diplomatic trips when she met Waylorn. He was a human but he was different. He worshipped nature and life in a similar way that elves did and the gods spoke to him much in the same fashion that they spoke to Sylvyana. Her curiosity for him made Sylvyana want to meet him again and soon the curiosity turned into love. But she wouldn't allow her feelings to interfere with her duties, so she never confessed her feelings to Waylorn or anybody else.

The time went by, and Sylvyana's father passed away. She felt she was still too young to become a Queen, but it was what she had to do, and she had been preparing herself for that moment all her life.
Taking the crown meant that she'd had to take all the responsibilities attached to it. She'll have to marry and move to the capital... and she did without hesitation. A Queen has to live up to her duties.
The wedding was celebrated just a week later, and it was one of the most opulent ceremonies that Silvanesti has witnessed. Sylvyana looked splendid in her bridal gown and she declared her eternal love to her new husband. The things she had to do for her people.

She thought that her husband was a dull, boring and unimaginative man. He only cared for what happened in Silvanesti and politics in Silvanesti were as boring as him. They lived in a paradise where nothing interesting ever happened. But she made her best effort to get along with him. He was a good man, she thought, just weak and narrow minded. He might never be a good ruler, but he did well as a figurehead.

Some years passed, and elves lived happily under Sylvyana's queendom. Everybody cheered when it was announced that the kings were expecting their first child. A heir to the lineage of Silvanos.
As the pregnancy advanced, Sylvyana had to retire from public life for a time, and her husband convinced her to spend some time resting in her palace at Alinosti so the tensions of government didn't endanger the child. Young and naive, Sylvvyana thought it was a good idea.

A baby girl was born, with skin pale as the stars and hair black as the night sky. But the most stunning feature of the baby were her eyes of emerald green. She looked a lot like her mother. Sylvyana named her Va'ardalia.

But happiness wouldn't last. Only a few hours after giving birth some men from the royal guard appeared riding gryphs. They looked altered. They said to Sylvyana that her presence was required in the capital. She'd have to travel alone with them, leaving her newborn child behind.

She demanded to be told what had happened in Silvanost, but they refused to tell her. Nobody had ever refused to follow a direct command from her. Then they commanded her to go with them. Too worried for what could have happened in Silvanost that was so serious to require her immediate pressence, she aggreed to go with them still weak and tired after giving birth.

She entrusted Sisteena, her most trusted maiden, with attending the baby while she was away and she let the men of the royal guard take her to Silvanost.

When they arrived she was treated like a prisoner. They were rude to her and took her into a room without windows where she was watched by members of the guard all the time. She never attempted to escape, even if it would be an easy task for her. She wanted to stay and clear whatever misunderstanding there could be.

Next morning they took her into a court. All the nobles in Silvanesti were there. Her husband was there. He accused her of being unfaithful to him. He accused her of giving birth to a half human monstrosity. She wasn't given an opportunity to defend herself. She could only listen to the false accusations, powerless and broken.
Everybody seemed to believe him. That kind of treason was unknown to the elves and they were unprepared to deal with it, so they chose to believe the betrayer instead of listening to their Queen. She had always supported the trade with humans. She was known to have friends among them. A human lover wouldn't be something so uncalled for, right?

She was sentenced to exile away from the lands of Silvanesti. She was no longer considered to be an elf. Her name would be erased from all the registers. If she was ever found inside the frontiers of Silvanesti, she'd be hunted to death. And all of that without her being able to complain or say a thing. They'd escort her to the frontier and then leave her alone.
She asked many questions, but nobody cared to answer them. She was being ignored. They had chose. They had turned their back on her. The grief turned into desperation and the desperation into anger. In the end, her claims of innocence looked like pitiable attempts to justify herself.

Nobody would believe her. She asked to see her daughter. Again, she got no answer.
She was not allowing them to escort her out of Silvanesti like she was a criminal, nor let them take her daughter away. She took the shape of a bird and fled, using a near tree to teleport back to Alinosti. She found the palace empty. Everybody had betrayed her. Her husband had been plotting to take the crown for himself and she hadn't noticed. How long had he been planning his betrayal?
She feared for her daughter's life. She had the birthright to the throne. She was a liability. And no matter how hard she tried to find her, she seemed to have banished in the air. She ended convicing herself that her husband had commanded to kill her.

She was mad with grief and anger but she didn't know what to do or where to go. She decided to retire from Silvanesti for a time to think for a plan to recover everything that had been taken away from her. And not knowing where to go she relied on her old friend Waylorn. They became lovers. Why not? There were already that horrible accusations about herself. She hadn't any commitment to the vows that had already been broken, and not by her. But, as much as her younger self had dreamed about being able to love Waylorn freely, her adult self didn't gain any solace out of it. She felt that their relationship was a mere consolation prize after all she had lost. Thanks to Waylorn's diplomatic connection with Silvanesti, she learned that her husband had been married again and was talking about having children. That made her furious, realizing it had all been a manipulation from him to sit his own dinasty at the throne. That reinforced the idea that Va'ardalia had been killed. That day she swore revenge against the husband who had betrayed her and all the elves who had turned their back on her.

If it was not enough for her to hate their own kind, she was victim of some assassination intents from some of her own people. Her husband probably didn't feel comfortable knowing she was so close and probably plotting revenge. Sylvyana was an acknowledged spellcaster and she hadn't difficulties in dealing with the assassins.

She didn't kill them, though. An elf never kills another elf. There is no worse crime than that and she had to prove she was still better than them. So she polymorphed them into creatures of the forest or mutilated them so they couldn't harm anybody again. Sometimes she'd tortured them until they acknowledged her as their true and only queen before sending them back to Silvanost with their will destroyed. The most people they sent against her, the most convinced she was that her own race was corrupted beyond all possibility of redemption.

Stories say that her god (the god of Redemption and Rebirth, The Blue Phoenix) abandoned her, not supporting all the pain she was causing. In her version, it was her who decided to abandon her faith, realizing she no longer believed in what her god stated.

One day she just went too far. This time the elves who wanted her dead died in her hands. She was furious. They had repudiated her, separated from her daughter, and now they had made her a murderer and escaped her control. Her healing powers were gone some time ago. She prayed to anyone who'd listen to have them back so they could get what they deserved. And someone listened.

She heard a charming voice in her head: «Serve me and you'll have them back. They'll bow to you as their only queen. Not just these ones, but all of them.»
«A Queen serves no one but her people. But I'll stay faithful to you if you give me what I desire.»
«That's enough. But I warn you: your desire is not to be satiated. Hunger only leads to more hunger.»
«Then I'll feast on them!»
Sylvyana felt herself filled with divine energies again, as she saw the skin and flesh of the elves quickly rotting away and their skeletons fading into invisibility until only skeletal hands and glowing eyes remained. This new kind of undead would be later called Wichtlins.
«You want to punish the ones who betrayed you. Whenever an elf dies as a betrayer of their own race they'd rise again, bound to your will.»
Sylvyana was exultant, infused with her new dark powers. She realized she was speaking to Chemosh, the Lord of Undead himself, but she didn't care. To her, he'll always be the Endless Hunger and she'll serve him faithfully for allowing her to exact her revenge.
Reluctant to ask for more, after all the Endless Hunger had already given to her, she asked him for her daughter's soul. He told her he couldn't help her with that, as her soul hadn't been into his realm. She hadn't died.

Not just furious now, but wanting to find her daughter, she took the resolution of declaring a war against Silvanesti. But even with her new powers she'd need an army. First she told Waylorn about her plans. He was horrorized and refused to take part. At this time, the Queen was still young and naive and had taken as a fact that Waylorn would follow her just because he loved her. She felt offended and betrayed, but she didn't want to punish him just for doing what he thought was the right thing, so she let him go.

She spent many years building her army. First she settled herself at Baleph, a distant elven city that had been abandoned a long time ago. She then traveled to the woods of Lahue. There she tamed the wild Wyverns that lived there and taught the ways of the Endless Hunger to the local tribesmen. who saw her as some kind of goddess. Then she traveled all Krynn, looking for small settlements of elves that she could turn to her side. She lured them into commiting atrocious acts against their kind to ensure their souls were tainted and then slayed them all so they would raise as Wichtlins. Intelligent and deadly, they hated elves among all things and they were totally loyal to Sylvyana. Like that, even lacking necromantic powers of her own, she earned the title of The Ghoul Queen and the Endless Hunger made her his Chosen One, granting her immortality.

When she returned to Silvanesti with her army of Wyverns, Wichtlins and ravenous cannibals the elves were ready to face her. Waylorn (why did he look so old?) had warned them and they had time to prepare. Sylvyana's army ravaged the land, but with the aid of the Knights of Solamnia the elves were able to defend themselves. They were motivated as many who fell rose again as Wichtlins. It was a long war with many losses on both sides but in the end, after many sacrifices, the war started turning on the side of the elves. It would have been different if she hadn't told Waylorn in advance, thought Sylvyana. Now she had to decide whether to make a glorious last stand with her army or retreat to fight another day. It wasn't a difficult decision. She took her most loyal followers and took them back to Baleph by magic. Then she prayed to the Endless Hunger to take them to a safe place. A portal in time opened and swallowed Sylvyana and her followers. And there she waited for centuries, planning her revenge, until she was called once again to this world by her God. One of the first things she asked to the Eternal Hunger when she was back was about her daughter again. But she got the same answer. After so many years she was still alive.

Her two driving goals, as they had always been, were getting all elves to serve her as Wichtlins and finding her daughter.
Everything else has already been told.
But what about Va'ardalia? How did she survive? How is she still young after so many years? There are parts of this story that have yet to be told.


No Queens allowed here but me!
And Freddy Mercury.


Reposting again, and this is the last one for now: second encounter with Sylvyana, the Ghoul Queen.

The PCs traveled to Baleph, Sylvyana's whereabouts, in the company of some NPC to help against the minions.

The weather was stormy. Sylvyana was a level 20 druid and had set the storm to shield herself against any intruders while she was performing her ritual. But Dalindra was a druid too, and she came up with a plan. While the other PCs were fighting Sylvyana's hordes (wichtlani elves, wyverns and wichtlins) she casted Control Winds and used it to create tornadoes to level down the main buildings, that she thought to be empty. They knew Sylvyana was on the temple performing the ritual so she just leveled it down.

What could have been a great idea wasn't. They had avoided fighting some minions, but without being busy with the ritual, they had to face a Ghoul Queen who could use all her power against the PCs.

Dalindra had used her wind and weather control spells to create such a bad weather that minions were completely neutralized: wyverns couldn't fly and both wichtlins and wichtlani had to reach for cover. The visibility was also close to zero.

But they still had to defeat a level 20 druid with a 3.5 Shapechange spell on herself. After some attempts against her, it was obvious that she had too many resources and couldn't be defeated by sheer force. Even if they managed to harm her, she just retired herself, allowed regeneration to make its job and came back unharmed and with her resources intact.

But they knew she had a weak point. Dalindra told Va'ardalia (who was a bard) to stay close to her. They hid in a small house with no windows. Va'ardalia was given an Antimagic Field scroll. They just waited for Sylvyana to appear, sure that she would try to get her «daughter».

Sylvyana realized it was probably a trap but she was overconfident. She tracked the PCs to the house and entered, prepared to face them. And she was put into the Antimagic Field as soon as she did it. Dalindra sent her animal companion to grapple her. Sylvyana didn't have an animal companion, but she had an artifact that allowed her to cast Dominate Monster, so she controlled Reya (again) to defend her. Fortunately, she wasn't rival for the PCs and they defeated both of them and released Reya from the mind control later.

They had found a way to release the corrupted elves from Allomanya in their way to Baleph, but it took them some time to do it. Even with all the devastation there were few losses, but Dalindra was horrorized of what Sylvyana had done to her people, turning them to ravenous cannibals.

They captured her alive, stripped her out of all her gear and awakened her to interrogate her. She was gacious in defeat. She was blessed by her god so she would rise again if she was killed (or so she said), and she had all the time in the world to erradicate elvenkind, so she was patient. She talked openly about her plans, her desires and her thoughts. She was even friendly. Her calm ways and the fact she regretted nothing made her look more as a monster.

But still, Dalindra pitied her more than anything. When they talked about what they could do with her she wanted to set her free. «If she attempts something, we'll fight her again. But we have to give her the chance to change». The other PCs strongly disagreed, but Dalindra was adamant about not killing her (in case they could) or locking her up forever. So they ended planeshifting her to the Plane of Shadow where she wouldn't be able to prepare her spells because she lacked any connection with nature, and exiled her there.

She managed to escape after some time, of course. She used her alter self at will to get a new identity and now she's plotting undercover.

But guess what? Dalindra was right.

I GMed a solo story for Va'ardalia (who appeared here as an NPC but is Dalindra's PC in other stories) after that, where she investigated if Sylvyana's claim to be her mother was true. I brought Sylvyana back for that story, and after some time Va'ardalia and Sylvyana are plotting together to sit Va'ardalia on the throne of Silvanesti. Va'ardalia has promised the Ghoul Queen to put an end to corruption among elves and Sylvyana has decided to trust her... for now. Whether Va'ardalia is being corrupted by Sylvyana's foul influence or Sylvyana is being saved by Va'ardalia is yet to be known. But Sylvyana is changing, that cannot be denied.

About Va'ardalia's story and if she's really Sylvyana's daughter... It's left for a further post ;-D


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Now reposting first encounter with Sylvyana, the Ghoul Queen:

Again, Tharic and Dalindra are the main characters involved into the story. The other PCs didn't play a major role.

The PCs arrived to a town where wild elves were gathering as refugees from the unnatural winter that had made their lands (Ergoth) inhospitable. There, they met one of their former allies, Reya, a wild elf barbarian who had become a good friend of Dalindra. She told her that she was trying to unite her people to fight for their lands. She was also helping to organize a gathering of the most relevant factions that wanted to reconquer the land so they could come to an agreement to fight together. Aside from the wild elves, another two factions were going to be present: the one from the main elven lands (Silvanesti, represented by a former PC turned NPC, Va'ardalia Evelar) and the one who resided in Ergoth in the former lands of the wild elves.
Remember the artifact the PCs purified on Mohrlex's story? It was a divine artifact with awesome healing powers.

Dalindra gave it to Reya so she could use it to help their people. This is important.

So the PCs went to attend the gathering of factions, which was a fancy banquet in the town hall. To please the elven attendants, Reya had brought some decorative plants and even a beautiful tree in the middle of the room.

Tharic didn't wear his armor and he left all weapons but a dagger in the entrance. Dalindra also left her quarterstaff, but didn't care a lot about it.

The meeting didn't start well. The two factions of elves were polite to each other but the tension was clear. The wild elves, on their side, didn't seem to care for political dissension. They were just hungry.

The food was awesome. Dalindra had never eaten anything so delicious. The more she ate, the more she wanted. And the hungrier she felt. Soon she noticed that it wasn't just her. All the elves had started to eat like they hadn't eaten in weeks, forgetting all politeness. The leaders of the two factions demanded to be served first, and when Va'ardalia was served first, the other elf stole her plate from her hands. Dalindra called Reya for help, but she calmed her down saying that everything was under control. It was better to just act normal and try to realize what was happening.

Dalindra was worried, but she stopped eating (she had to roll a Will save so she was able to do it). As the banquet progressed, the elves were eating with bare hands, gorging meat (even though most were vegetarians) as there was no tomorrow. When the service entered from the kitchen with the desserts, the ravenous elves jumped on them, trying to eat not the desserts but the servants.

The wild elves, instead of that, jumped above the tables and turned on the non-elven attendants of the banquet. They seemed far more focused than their «civilized» counterparts. Reya attacked Tharic with her dagger, biting him as she tried to eat him alive. Dalindra remained hidden, casting spells to hinder the ravenous elves without killing them.

The people of the service ran away and locked themselves in the kitchen while the elves were trying to devour their fellow elves. Va'ardalia was able to overcome the feeding frenzy enough to avoid attacking her kind and remain fighting defensively. Fortunately most elves were unarmed, so they relied only in a poor bite attack, but with the wild elves acting as a barrier to avoid them getting help, they'd end killing themselves.

The difficult part of the fight was actually keeping the low level elves alive. They were victims, so the PCs didn't want to kill them. Dalindra didn't want to believe either that her friend Reya and the other wild elves were evil. Someting had to be controlling them.

In the middle of the mess, a regal figure appeared in the middle of the room, coming out from the tree that Reya had brought. A group of wild elves with their faces painted white to resemble skulls and a crow skull headdress appeared just before her.

She wasn't a wild elf, but a Silvanesti elf. Pale, green eyed, raven haired, she looked a lot like Va'ardalia, only a twisted version of her, dressed in royal garments with the colors of the God of Death. She was carrying the artifact that Dalindra had given to Reya.

The feeding stopped for a moment, as the elves glared at her in some sort of primal recognition.

Then she spoke in a soft cultured voice:
«Chosen of the Endless Hunger, your Queen...»

Her speech was interrupted by Dalindra. She didn't know who this woman was, but she was not her queen.

«My people bows to no queen!» she cried. The «Queen» stared Dalindra in disbelief. How she dare to interrupt her speech? She sent some of her «Crows of the Endless Hunger» (the wild elves she had brought with her) to get Dalindra. Meanwhile, Tharic was defending himself against Reya.

The elves continued devouring each others while the PCs were too busy.

Some of the «Crows» went to get Va'ardalia, who defended herself the best she could. With the help of Tharic and the other PCs they avoided them reaching Va'ardalia. The Queen looked displeased.

«Get her... sister then.» she ordered. And they went for Lynessa Evelar, Va'ardalia's younger sister. Again, they avoided her being caught and defeated the Crows.

Meanwhile, Dalindra shifted into a bear and grappled the self proclaimed Queen, who struggled to break the grapple. Dalindra dealt quite an ammount of damage to her, and for some reason she didn't defend herself, as she was focused on doing something else.

Three turns of madness followed, after which the Queen casted a Word of Recall and disappeared with the artifact. Her Crows of the Endless Hunger tried to get away too, but some of them were defeated before they could.

Now the PCs had still to deal with the ravenous elves and the wild elves, who seemed loyal to the Queen.

After knocking them down with non lethal damage, they tried to realize what had happened.
After trying to heal the Crows to interrogate them and accidentally killing them (they reacted to healing as if they were undead) they handled the other prisoners with care. An NPC healer that another PC had recruited with Leadership casted Break Enchantment on some of the wild elves to try to get them rid of whatever corruption was affecting them. He had to roll a nat 20 to succeed. I made the player roll. He managed to free Reya against all odds. And Reya had enough information to fill some holes.

But I'll get into Sylvyana's story and into the next part on another post because this one is already too long.

Again I loved how my players did this event more difficult because they didn't want to harm any of the elves, even the corrupted ones. They saved both Va'ardalia and her sister and got all the elves safe. That was probably the biggest success they could score at this point of the story. And they managed to release Reya from the influence of the Queen, which was something that I didn't expect (as much as I like this character I though she'd end dead here). So they did great though it was hard to score a win here.


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Ravenous Kermit


Gunpowder, gelatine
Dynamite with a laser beam
Guaranteed to blow your mind
Anytime


Stir-fried elven hearts are delicious, Sir Kjeldorn. You should try.

The secret of survival is always having others going to war for you. And winning. Specially winning.

Moral Standard: Revenge is a dish better served stir-fried cold.


Pulg should not rule this city because he thinks I am WoW's Sylvanas and that I'll bring Varimathras here ;-D


Sissyl should not rule this city because shs doesn't even have a nobility title. I liked her better when she was Lady Sissyl.


Yes, Master, we'll show you the floor.
*Minions tackle you and bring you to the floor*

Minions, ripe our enemies flesh and eat them alive.


GoatToucher is the one who started spreading that curse, and he is actually proud of it.


Granted! You ARE a good rare steak. First quality flesh, ready to be fed to my minions.

I wish I had my minions back.


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After the introduction, let's go to the second memorable encounter with Sylvyana, the Ghoul Queen.

The PCs traveled to Baleph, Sylvyana's whereabouts, in the company of some NPC to help against the minions.

The weather was stormy. Sylvyana was a level 20 druid and had set the storm to shield herself against any intruders while she was performing her ritual. But Dalindra was a druid too, and she came up with a plan. While the other PCs were fighting Sylvyana's hordes (wichtlani elves, wyverns and wichtlins) she casted Control Winds and used it to create tornadoes to level down the main buildings, that she thought to be empty. They knew Sylvyana was on the temple performing the ritual so she just leveled it down.

What could have been a great idea wasn't. They had avoided fighting some minions, but without being busy with the ritual, they had to face a Ghoul Queen who could use all her power against the PCs.

Dalindra had used her wind and weather control spells to create such a bad weather that minions were completely neutralized: wyverns couldn't fly and both wichtlins and wichtlani had to reach for cover. The visibility was also close to zero.

But they still had to defeat a level 20 druid with a 3.5 Shapechange spell on herself. After some attempts against her, it was obvious that she had too many resources and couldn't be defeated by sheer force. Even if they managed to harm her, she just retired herself, allowed regeneration to make its job and came back unharmed and with her resources intact.

But they knew she had a weak point. Dalindra told Va'ardalia (who was a bard) to stay close to her. They hid in a small house with no windows. Va'ardalia was given an Antimagic Field scroll. They just waited for Sylvyana to appear, sure that she would try to get her «daughter».

Sylvyana realized it was probably a trap but she was overconfident. She tracked the PCs to the house and entered, prepared to face them. And she was put into the Antimagic Field as soon as she did it. Dalindra sent her animal companion to grapple her. Sylvyana didn't have an animal companion, but she had an artifact that allowed her to cast Dominate Monster, so she controlled Reya (again) to defend her. Fortunately, she wasn't rival for the PCs and they defeated both of them and released Reya from the mind control later.

They had found a way to release the corrupted elves from Allomanya in their way to Baleph, but it took them some time to do it. Even with all the devastation there were few losses, but Dalindra was horrorized of what Sylvyana had done to her people, turning them to ravenous cannibals.

They captured her alive, stripped her out of all her gear and awakened her to interrogate her. She was gacious in defeat. She was blessed by her god so she would rise again if she was killed (or so she said), and she had all the time in the world to erradicate elvenkind, so she was patient. She talked openly about her plans, her desires and her thoughts. She was even friendly. Her calm ways and the fact she regretted nothing made her look more as a monster.

But still, Dalindra pitied her more than anything. When they talked about what they could do with her she wanted to set her free. «If she attempts something, we'll fight her again. But we have to give her the chance to change». The other PCs strongly disagreed, but Dalindra was adamant about not killing her (in case they could) or locking her up forever. So they ended planeshifting her to the Plane of Shadow where she wouldn't be able to prepare her spells because she lacked any connection with nature, and exiled her there.

She managed to escape after some time, of course. She used her alter self at will to get a new identity and now she's plotting undercover.

But guess what? Dalindra was right.

I GMed a solo story for Va'ardalia (who appeared here as an NPC but is Dalindra's PC in other stories) after that, where she investigated if Sylvyana's claim to be her mother was true. I brought Sylvyana back for that story, and after some time Va'ardalia and Sylvyana are plotting together to sit Va'ardalia on the throne of Silvanesti. Va'ardalia has promised the Ghoul Queen to put an end to corruption among elves and Sylvyana has decided to trust her... for now. Whether Va'ardalia is being corrupted by Sylvyana's foul influence or Sylvyana is being saved by Va'ardalia is yet to be known. But Sylvyana is changing, that cannot be denied.

About Va'ardalia's story and if she's really Sylvyana's daughter... I can tell if you want, but it would make this story even longer and it would be too much derailing. So I guess it's left for another moment.


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Now, first of the two memorable encounters involving Sylvyana.

Again, Tharic and Dalindra are the main characters involved into the story. The other PCs didn't play a major role.

The PCs arrived to a town where wild elves were gathering as refugees from the unnatural winter that had made their lands (Ergoth) inhospitable. There, they met one of their former allies, Reya, a wild elf barbarian who had become a good friend of Dalindra. She told her that she was trying to unite her people to fight for their lands. She was also helping to organize a gathering of the most relevant factions that wanted to reconquer the land so they could come to an agreement to fight together. Aside from the wild elves, another two factions were going to be present: the one from the main elven lands (Silvanesti, represented by a former PC turned NPC, Va'ardalia Evelar) and the one who resided in Ergoth in the former lands of the wild elves.
Remember the artifact the PCs purified on Mohrlex's story? It was a divine artifact with awesome healing powers.

Dalindra gave it to Reya so she could use it to help their people. This is important.

So the PCs went to attend the gathering of factions, which was a fancy banquet in the town hall. To please the elven attendants, Reya had brought some decorative plants and even a beautiful tree in the middle of the room.

Tharic didn't wear his armor and he left all weapons but a dagger in the entrance. Dalindra also left her quarterstaff, but didn't care a lot about it.

The meeting didn't start well. The two factions of elves were polite to each other but the tension was clear. The wild elves, on their side, didn't seem to care for political dissension. They were just hungry.

The food was awesome. Dalindra had never eaten anything so delicious. The more she ate, the more she wanted. And the hungrier she felt. Soon she noticed that it wasn't just her. All the elves had started to eat like they hadn't eaten in weeks, forgetting all politeness. The leaders of the two factions demanded to be served first, and when Va'ardalia was served first, the other elf stole her plate from her hands. Dalindra called Reya for help, but she calmed her down saying that everything was under control. It was better to just act normal and try to realize what was happening.

Dalindra was worried, but she stopped eating (she had to roll a Will save so she was able to do it). As the banquet progressed, the elves were eating with bare hands, gorging meat (even though most were vegetarians) as there was no tomorrow. When the service entered from the kitchen with the desserts, the ravenous elves jumped on them, trying to eat not the desserts but the servants.

The wild elves, instead of that, jumped above the tables and turned on the non-elven attendants of the banquet. They seemed far more focused than their «civilized» counterparts. Reya attacked Tharic with her dagger, biting him as she tried to eat him alive. Dalindra remained hidden, casting spells to hinder the ravenous elves without killing them.

The people of the service ran away and locked themselves in the kitchen while the elves were trying to devour their fellow elves. Va'ardalia was able to overcome the feeding frenzy enough to avoid attacking her kind and remain fighting defensively. Fortunately most elves were unarmed, so they relied only in a poor bite attack, but with the wild elves acting as a barrier to avoid them getting help, they'd end killing themselves.

The difficult part of the fight was actually keeping the low level elves alive. They were victims, so the PCs didn't want to kill them. Dalindra didn't want to believe either that her friend Reya and the other wild elves were evil. Someting had to be controlling them.

In the middle of the mess, a regal figure appeared in the middle of the room, coming out from the tree that Reya had brought. A group of wild elves with their faces painted white to resemble skulls and a crow skull headdress appeared just before her.

She wasn't a wild elf, but a Silvanesti elf. Pale, green eyed, raven haired, she looked a lot like Va'ardalia, only a twisted version of her, dressed in royal garments with the colors of the God of Death. She was carrying the artifact that Dalindra had given to Reya.

The feeding stopped for a moment, as the elves glared at her in some sort of primal recognition.

Then she spoke in a soft cultured voice:
«Chosen of the Endless Hunger, your Queen...»

Her speech was interrupted by Dalindra. She didn't know who this woman was, but she was not her queen.

«My people bows to no queen!» she cried. The «Queen» stared Dalindra in disbelief. How she dare to interrupt her speech? She sent some of her «Crows of the Endless Hunger» (the wild elves she had brought with her) to get Dalindra. Meanwhile, Tharic was defending himself against Reya.

The elves continued devouring each others while the PCs were too busy.

Some of the «Crows» went to get Va'ardalia, who defended herself the best she could. With the help of Tharic and the other PCs they avoided them reaching Va'ardalia. The Queen looked displeased.

«Get her... sister then.» she ordered. And they went for Lynessa Evelar, Va'ardalia's younger sister. Again, they avoided her being caught and defeated the Crows.

Meanwhile, Dalindra shifted into a bear and grappled the self proclaimed Queen, who struggled to break the grapple. Dalindra dealt quite an ammount of damage to her, and for some reason she didn't defend herself, as she was focused on doing something else.

Three turns of madness followed, after which the Queen casted a Word of Recall and disappeared with the artifact. Her Crows of the Endless Hunger tried to get away too, but some of them were defeated before they could.

Now the PCs had still to deal with the ravenous elves and the wild elves, who seemed loyal to the Queen.

After knocking them down with non lethal damage, they tried to realize what had happened.
After trying to heal the Crows to interrogate them and accidentally killing them (they reacted to healing as if they were undead) they handled the other prisoners with care. An NPC healer that another PC had recruited with Leadership casted Break Enchantment on some of the wild elves to try to get them rid of whatever corruption was affecting them. He had to roll a nat 20 to succeed. I made the player roll. He managed to free Reya against all odds. And Reya had enough information to fill some holes.

But I'll get into Sylvyana's story and into the next part on another post because this one is already too long.

Again I loved how my players did this event more difficult because they didn't want to harm any of the elves, even the corrupted ones. They saved both Va'ardalia and her sister and got all the elves safe. That was probably the biggest success they could score at this point of the story. And they managed to release Reya from the influence of the Queen, which was something that I didn't expect (as much as I like this character I though she'd end dead here). So they did great though it was hard to score a win here.


My name is Sylvyana Silvanos.
You have burned my daughter.
Prepare to die!

The next poster will be my avenging sword.


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As the GQ I don't care about your petty abbreviated titles and I rule that all my minions will be feeding on you both... alive.


Banned for making me realize I no longer own corrupted elves. That were good times, so free, dreaming of exterminating a whole race...


You forgot she's an elf.

*Ellara raises as an invisible skeletal being, with only her hands and eyes to be seen*

Now finish your job, ninja. Your queen commands so.

*Sends Ellara to complete her job as a Wichtlin*


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Dalindra is banned for stealing my playthings.
Give me my corrupted elves back! You call yourself a redeemer, but you are a mere thief!


I feed Grandpa Wonderbra to a pack of corrupted, ravenous, barely rational, flesh eating, cannibalistic wild elves. Just for knowing where to find me. You know too much.

Fun fact: Sylvyana is actually an elf too.

*Slays OOC with a scimitar for insinuating that she must be an elf*


Throws him into the resulting wildfire.
All life must be respected, you vandal! Unless we're talking about elves, of course.


Ekanta Hanoi is banned for accusing Valinor of using up all the bleach when it's obvious that he was his accomplice.


Queen-to-be


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When I brought Queen Sylvyana to the table everybody kept mistaking her for WoW's Sylvanas. I didn't choose her name, she was a canon villainess (and I think she was named before WoW's Sylvanas, because she is first mentioned in some old Dragonlance resources).
Even if I have a tendency to abbreviate names, I avoid doing it with leaders or villains because it goes against the image I want to make of them.
Calling Sylvyana Sylvie or Syl is the best way to ruin her epic evil queen image xD


I don't know. They look like freethinkers. Dangerous thing in a goblin.


What a double nuisance! Communists and Goblins!
You're not even worth my time.


So you're Madame Sissyl now. That sounds nice. Why that social upgrade, my dear?


Young Naive Me


Corbin Silvermane


Do you mean this John Doe that I use as a chair or the one I use as a carpet? I respect them. I have even stopped wearing heels while walking on the latter!

Moral standard: Be a fair ruler.


I have faith in the Lord of Bones, the Endless Hunger, Judge of Souls. And to prove my faith I'll offer him the souls of all elvenkind.

Moral standard (inspired from a V:tM mention in another post) A beast I am lest a beast I become.


I am the wolf among the sheep, the scourge of a race, the one and only queen of all elves!

The next poster is overly dramatic too.


I wish. If I do nothing either, how can I triumph?

Moral standard: Mother always knows best


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Of course they are not getting a raise, they're my slaves, they're not getting paid.

Moral standard: Always remember who you are


The One Who Knows Too Much


God Bless the Queen


I know! That one is easy: you use some of the souls that you have gained to bargain to get your soul back, and it's done!

Moral Standard: Just be yourself.


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I have some undead elves riding undead elks. I guess I could offer Lady Strongshield a job.


Archer vs Dragons


RISE, RISE AGAIN, OH ANCIENT THREAD, SO I CAN BENEFIT FROM YOUR INSIGHT!

Just wanted to get some clarification on this spell, to see how it really works.
1) As it is a Polymorph effect, it shouldn't change the creature type, right?
2)If a human was changed to an elf, would he get extended life span? As it works as Alter Self I guess it would only give him darkvision and low light vision but none of the other special qualities, right?

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