Corvus – A Raven’s Tale – Crown of Crows – Part XVI – A Brief Rest at Stonewall

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A Brief Rest at Stonewall

With one night remaining before the next full moon and the end of the time limit deemed by the prophecy, the Corvids decided to stop for a decent night’s rest at Stonewall, just a few leagues from the settlement of Ironholde.

This was the first real rest they had taken since leaving the Colony of Thornwatch many days ago. So much had happened in the time since they left Thornwatch and so much ground covered. The loss of Ethelred was also still weighing heavily upon his closer comrades; Everild and Ronin.

Stonewall used to be the home of a Corvid Colony, many moons ago; before the Man-Colony was built at Ironholde and this led to the Stonewall Corvids; those that survived the intrusions, to leave their once loved home and head off elsewhere.

Corvus hoped that it didn’t bode ill for their quest…

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Corvus – A Raven’s Tale – Crown of Crows – Part XIII – The Fall of Ethelred into a Watery Tomb

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The Fall of Ethelred into a Watery Tomb

Not stopping for rest before entering the Graveland was about to prove fatal for the group. The calling voice seemed to have become fainter, as if further away now despite them heading closer towards it.

Entering into the Graveland the Corvids felt a shift in the atmosphere, the air felt denser and thick and they began to feel exhausted. There were watery pools scattered about throughout the land that they needed to head across and an eerily oppressive mist.

The calling started to get to Ethelred in a way that it didn’t affect the others, he started to become obsessed with finding its source despite the others wanting to move on and leave the forsaken wastes far behind.

Suddenly and without any warning, Ethelred flaps his wings and takes to the sky, at first he seems to be flying fine but then he becomes stiff as though wrapped in the web of a large spider and he rapidly drops from the air and splashes into one of the pools of water.

All of the remaining Corvids other than Corvus attempt to fly to get to him with haste and despite flying low and closer to the ground than he did they all suffer the same bound up fate, without landing in the water thankfully. Corvus heads towards Ethelred’s location hopping as fast as he can with the odd flap of his wings to boost himself, cautious of suffering the constriction of the oddly dense atmosphere.

As Corvus reaches the pool that Ethelred fell into, he sees him just rise above the water, flapping his one free wing to try and get himself out of danger but to little avail. Corvus finds a stick and uses it to try to pull Ethelred to safety.

Finding it too much of a struggle to pull his friend from the water with his leg strength alone, Corvus decides to use his wingpower and he flaps his strong wings to pull himself backwards and drag Ethelred with him.

He feels the fog enclose him, his wings stick to his body, he falls to the ground unable to move his wings any longer.

Ethelred is lost…

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Corvus – A Raven’s Tale – Crown of Crows – Part XII – A Mysterious Calling from the Entrance to the Graveland

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A Mysterious Calling from the Entrance to the Graveland

Reaching the end of the Burntwood, the group find the entrance to the Graveland; several Corvid skulls decorate the desolation surrounding the entrance which is a hole in the rocky outcrop that surrounds the entirety of the land they’re heading towards.

Corvid warriors often wear the skulls of their ancestors into battle but seeing the skulls of their kinfolk used in this manner strikes the Conspiracy of Corvids with both fear, and intense anger. The Rattus Rodentius had desecrated the remains of the fallen Corvidae soldiers and the remains have been left in place ever since.

Corvus swore that once the quest was over with and the Darkness passed, if he was still alive he would lead an expedition to retrieve all of the remains of the 6th Corvidae Legion and give them a proper funeral. All those that perished in the Burtnwood would have been reduced to ashes but those who fought their last stand in the Graveland needed to be taken elsewhere.

Suddenly, a strange calling could be heard coming from the entrance to the Graveland; suspicious of a trap set by their enemies; if indeed any remained in this land but intrigued as to the source of the calling, the group decided to push on without stopping to rest.

Reaching the entrance and seeing through to the Graveland, the Corvids brace themselves to discover the source of the strange calling…

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Corvus – A Raven’s Tale – Crown of Crows – Part XI – The Unwelcoming Sight of the Burntwood

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The Unwelcoming Sight of the Burntwood

Since leaving Thornwatch, the Conspiracy of Corvids has had a rather uneventful journey traveling at height across the north-east plains but despite being uneventful they all had a strong feeling of trepidation knowing that within a day’s journey they will arrive at the Burntwood.

The Burntwood and the Gravelands are the site of an ancient battle ground from the days of the Old Corvidae Empire and a sad time that contributed to the fall of the Empire.

The Battle of Ash Feathers saw the first time that the sworn enemies of all Corvids; the Rattus Rodentius managed to get the upperhand and it proved to be fatal. They coaxed the 6th Corvidae Legion into the forest, trapped them and set hundreds of fires simultaneously, wiping out the entire 6th Corvidae Legion and razing the Eastwood to the ground.

Since those times, the Burntwood and the Gravelands have been a no-go zone for Corvids and none are known to have ventured through there in centuries. The air is still too thick and dense to allow for flight and this is another factor that keeps many away and superstitious.

That’s all about to change, now that a Conspiracy of Corvids have arrived at the fringes of the wastes…

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Corvus – A Raven’s Tale – Crown of Crows – Part VIII – Corvus Makes a Tough Decision – The Corvids Begin Their Quest

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Corvus Makes a Tough Decision – The Corvids Begin Their Quest

Having heard the prophecy, Corvus is left with an impossible decision to make; does he source the Starshade herb and save his sibling only to see the whole of Corvid-kind eventually wiped out by the Darkness; or does he take up the quest and risk failing and the definite death of his sibling who is just a day or two at most away from death now?

There is no time to do both, the next full moon is less than a week away and the Crown must be retrieved by then.

Alwyn, the White Raven; hasn’t left the land around his Ancient Watchtower in over a century and the reclusive manner of his being suggests it could be just as long again before he even considers doing so, regardless of the reason.

Reluctantly, but seeing the bigger picture and knowing the outcome of not even trying to do so, Corvus decides that the only true course to take is to take up the quest of heading to Ironholde and getting the Crown.

Finbar, Munin & Hugin agree to join Corvus in the fulfillment of the prophecy and heading out on the quest and the White Raven shares with them the fragments of an old map so that they can find the way.

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Corvus – A Raven’s Tale – Crown of Crows – Part VII – Alwyn Relates a Prophecy from the Dawn of Corvids

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Alwyn Relates a Prophecy from the Dawn of Corvids

Four and the White Raven in a place where the stars spawn

A warning of Darkness, a plague from the Far North

A sickness that spreads turning Corvids to waste and bones

The only hope is one Colony, one King in a safe abode

Between the sky-stone falling and the next full moon

The Crown must be taken from the hand of a god

Or the Darkness will spread and it affects all croons

No more songs from the Corvids and the land is forgot

Alwyn then explains the prophecy:

“On this night, the sky stone fell like a flamed eagle flying through the night sky. This means that before the next full moon, you four must travel to Ironholde and retrieve the Crown of Crows from the hand of the Man King.

All Corvids must be united under one King and taken to Treehold Keep, there is an old castle there, the air is clean and protected by the Silvertip Mountain Range and should protect all those dwelling within from the Darkness.

The Corvid Colonies will not unite unless a King is crowned, and there is little time left to fulfill this prophecy; failing to do so will result in…

Extinction.”

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Corvus – A Raven’s Tale – Crown of Crows – Part V – The Meadow Temple; Astralus Starshade Herb Amongst Ruins

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The Meadow Temple; Astralus Starshade Herb Amongst Ruins

“The herb that you seek has many properties, and a very short lifespan once picked.”

The White Raven had a grim look on his face, and went on to relate to Corvus all that he knew about the Starshade herb.

“There are some ruins on an island to the east of this Watchtower, the Meadow Temple it is called. That is the only place in my knowledge that Astralus grows dependably.

It appears only at night, under starlight; hence it’s name in the common tongue of Starshade, and once picked it will wither and die by the following sunrise. There is no known way to preserve neither the herb itself or its roots and it cannot be replanted once harvested.”

Corvus knew that it would be near impossible to harvest the herb and get it home to Crowshaven in a single night but he had to find a way; meanwhile, two other Corvids arrived.

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