(This is a deep lore entry designed to add to the narrative of the setting)
The Epilogue of Arawyn, Winter of 1263
This was the Wellspring of the Earths’ Blood, a massive underground cavern consisting of an unspeakable beauty. At one far end of the hall sat a throne of roots so large, the tree that they belonged to seemed hard to even fathom. In the air, tiny pinpoints of blue and pale light drifted about, glimmering and illuminating the room. Arawyn had grown very fond of mortals and their look and so she donned their form more often than not. Her chosen appearance was a beautiful maiden of average height, smooth skin, earthen eyes and long auburn hair. Her dress was flowing and beautiful silk, tailored after the fashion of the high elves.
“We have a guest? How odd… I don’t recall that we have ever had a guest before…” Arawyn gave such a puzzled look to her man servant who knelt before her. He was small in stature and dressed in clothes that looked too large for his frame and also a tad too worn. He had entered the hall to report the news of this guest to her, but she struggled to even remember the servants name. She began to wonder if she always had a servant, or if he was somehow new. What purpose could he possibly serve for her, but nonetheless here he was. Her confusion was muddied by an unshakable feeling that this was normal. She relented to the confusion in her thoughts, “Well then, let them in please.”
The odd little man lumbered over to the chamber door at the far side of the hall and opened it slowly. There was nothing, no sound, no rush of air, just an awkward pause. No one entered and no one was there. Some time passed but she was unsure how much of it exactly, and then finally, slow deliberate footfalls could be heard approaching the door from the other side. Moments later a figure walked through the doors and into the vast beautiful halls. The guest was tall, and while she held very good posture and had taken very confident strides inward, her dress was torn ragged with age covered in dust. She looked old yet distinguished, battle-worn yet weary. In a booming but hallow voice she said one word to Arawyn that echoed through the chamber, “Welcome.”
'What an odd greeting' thought Arawyn as she rose from her throne. She walked steadily towards her guest, the long tail of her beautiful silk gown flowing behind her. “I am Arawyn, mother of the earth. What brings you to the wellspring of the earth’s blood?”
The guest flashed a look of confused annoyance, but the expression quickly faded and replaced with a tired calm. “I am Aradeyl and you are quite the sight to behold. I was much like you once, beautiful and young, vibrant and full of life. Tell me child, where did you come from? A beauty of your kind has not been seen for ages and so you are most welcome in my hall.”
Arawyn felt light headed. Something was terribly wrong but she could not remember what. She gazed past her guest and saw her throne behind her, had the two rotated as they talked? She quickly whipped her head around and saw her own throne was still behind her, but it was different somehow, the roots were dry and brittle. She felt her legs losing strength and she was going to collapse. She heard her guest rushing towards her to catch her. “No, we shouldn’t touch” Arawyn said, but she was falling and she felt the old yet strong arms catch her mid fall.
“But we already have” Aradeyl said to her. Aradeyl looked horrified as if she just realized what had happened here. “I would have wished to wither away in silence and peace. You have to believe that this was not my doing.” She thoughtfully brushed Arawyns hair out of her face, and helped her back to her feet. “I am so sorry that it has to be this way and I fear that neither of us will ever be the same…”