(edited by 501st Big Mike, CrazedPorcupine, Kuronan, RaptorAttacks, and Naggarok)
At long last, here’s a proper prologue to the Nyroth storyline. It leads into the first interactive lore event of the arc.
Volibear pounded his fist on the longship’s mast, sounding out a steady rhythm as the sea churned and tossed around its hull. The Ursine crew, save those working the oars, stamped and slapped the rough-hewn wood in unison. The song rose above the crashing waves and driving rain.
Hear, sons of Ursus! Hear, daughters, too!
The blood of battle washes clean
ye Ursine brave and true!
The ship’s seasoned pilot kept their course within a stone’s throw of the veil that concealed the land of Nyroth. This was no ordinary storm, and its gusts bore wild magic along with the salt-spray. A pair of Frostguard seers cowered beneath a tarp, murmuring the spells that shielded the ship and crew from the worst of it. The conniving Frostguard were little trusted by these proud warriors of the Winter’s Claw, but half a dozen ships without such protection had already been lost in these treacherous waters.
Volibear turned an eye toward the veil. The League’s mandate forbade them from crossing it, but every so often the storm would breach the illusion long enough to catch a glimpse of this mysterious land. Perhaps they would see something of interest that they could report back to Sejuani. Besides, they were certainly not going to trust the League to ensure that no other faction would slip through and stake an early claim.
Thresh, for example. His black sailbarge was just within sight. Volibear could see his lantern’s cold light swaying to and fro, eerily clear through the rain and fog. He thought about how many souls of proud Winter’s Claw warriors were trapped within that cursed lantern, or crewing that dark vessel, and prayed to the gods of the Ursine that he might have cause to smash them apart and send the valorous dead to their exalted company.
He sniffed the wet air. The scent of human. He turned and saw the junior of the Frostguard seers stumbling across the deck. She slipped, and he caught her by the arm. She yelped in surprise, then pointed at an ice floe near the Shadow Isles barge.
“True ice!” she exclaimed.
Volibear growled, then turned to order the helm to lay in a new course. Thresh’s baleful gaze flashed as he cracked his whip over the human skeletons crewing his ship.
It was only when the ship was nearly running against the ice floe that Volibear saw it. A block of true ice, with a broad and flat field of ice gathered around it.
The Shadow Isles ship was nearly there. Volibear trusted his warriors. The true ice, and glorious battle, would soon be theirs.
Thresh’s vessel dropped its gangplank. Its metal teeth bit into the ice floe. The skeletons began to lurch down the plank, dragging their rusted weapons behind them. Volibear could see pale flickers of green fire in their bony chests.
Volibear lunged over the side of the ship and landed atop the ice, soon followed by his warrior-kin. Battle was met, but still Thresh lurked on his ship, slowly swinging a length of chain back and forth in his hand.
“CRAVEN FIEND! FIGHT!” Volibear snarled at Thresh. He hooked his claws around a skeleton’s rib cage and flung it into the side of Thresh’s ship. It burst into dust, and the flicker of light began to drift up to the sky, before Thresh swept it up into his lantern.
Volibear shook with fury. In his anger, he had returned a soul, a soul that might have been freed, back into Thresh’s clutches. He would right this wrong. He charged across the ice floe and launched himself forward toward Thresh. He would tear the Warden apart!
Thresh raised his lantern and conjured a spectral barrier. Volibear crashed through it, and felt himself fall out of time into a blurry twilight realm. As he drifted, he caught a momentary glimpse of another ship approaching.
Volibear tumbled onto the deck of Thresh’s ship. He shook off the vile enchantment, and his senses returned.
He heard Thresh’s cruel voice. “What a shame that we will not finish our game today.”
As he raised himself up to leap upon the Chain Warden, Volibear saw another ship, flying the League’s flag. He looked overboard and saw his Ursine warriors and the skeletons both still atop the ice floe.
An emissary of the League stood on the bow of her ship, holding an enchanted sword high. “Withdraw to your vessels! The artifact will be taken under my protection and returned to Valoran!”
Volibear roared across the water to her. “You have no right, Emissary! Your law-word has no force here, beyond the veil!”
She looked to him. “Then you may make your case to the Council when we return.”
Volibear growled. They had failed to take the true ice, which would surely be brought back to Valoran on the emissary’s ship. But they had staked their claim. They would finish this on the Fields.
Miss Fortune lounged back in her chair and gave her tumbler of Demacian spirits a swirl. The ice clattered wonderfully against the glass. She was uneasy about making the voyage to Nyroth in this Zaunite zeppelin—she’d insisted on replacing everyone but the pilot and engineers with personnel from the Institute of War, to reduce the odds that there’d be a PsiKorps rat on this ship—but she couldn’t deny it was luxurious. The technology that had produced the ice for her drink also powered the little cooling-collars worn by the pair of poros snuggling at her feet.
You’re not Zaunite spies, are you? she thought to herself with a grin. They chirbled and nuzzled her, which she took as an assurance to the contrary.
And it was true that Zaunite technology was to thank for the lounge’s comfortable placidity. She could see the gray storm raging around the zeppelin through the hex-tempered glass surrounding the lounge, and yet it rocked to and fro barely more than a ship on a summer’s voyage to Ionia.
This chair was certainly comfortable. She lay back and sipped her drink. She knew Champions of the League who practiced never-ending vigilance. The Ionians in particular seemed to make some sort of hobby out of maintaining battle-poise at every instant. It sounded great, but in Miss Fortune’s opinion, if you had a real need to always be ready to deflect an assassin’s knife or dodge a rogue Summoner’s kill-spell, then you had already made some sort of horrible mistake that was going to catch up with you sooner or later. And she had serious thinking to do about how she was going to handle whatever waited for them on that island. And, not insignificantly, this was a very comfy chair.
She looked across the lounge at the two Summoners sitting at the bar. One of her favorite bartenders from the Heart of Gold, her favorite bar at the Institute, was standing behind it pouring them their drinks. She raised her glass to Venia Vis, and he nodded back. He was a Summoner, actually, though undeclared in the Nyroth dispute. (Maybe the Fields just weren’t paying enough, maybe he just enjoyed mixing arcane cocktails.) They said bartenders didn’t have time to chat, but that changed if you were a Champion.
Summoner Quin “Sodaman” Stewardson wore purple robes edged in the bright seafoam green of Bilgewater. The loose robes did little to conceal his broad shoulders; he was considerably more muscular than the average bookish Summoner. He was drinking some ThaumaKola-and-rum abomination that fumed purple smoke. She wrinkled her nose at the thought of what it might smell like.
Ionia’s Summoner, Purple Bavarois, had taken a more stylish approach to his attire, wearing a pants-and-jacket combination that retained the purple and gold of Summoner attire in a new cut. Miss Fortune supposed that he’d be less likely to trip over pants than robes, if things got hectic.
Summoner Bavarois looked at Sodaman and quirked an eyebrow. “Zaunite ThaumaKola? This esteemed gentleman presents you with a glorious array of refreshments from all across Valoran,” he swept his hand toward Venia’s well-stocked bar, the bottles carefully held in place with leather bands in case of turbulence, “and you select a ‘NoxiToxi’,” he pronounced the phrase distastefully, “concoction? That’s the sort of thing the 10th-level students gulp down between classes. How they learn the nuances of magic with that noise chugging through their veins is quite beyond me. I fear for the new generation.”
Sodaman inclined his head. “So, uh, speaking of generations … I was wondering. Your name’s Purple? What, do you have a sister named Red?”
Bavarois answered with a subtle smile. “Green, actually.” It was impossible to say whether or not he was being serious.
Sodaman grinned broadly. “Wait, hold on a sec.” He upturned the glass and drank it all in one go. He wiped his mouth. “Another, good sir! Still on the Institute’s tab, right?”
Summoner Venia Vis laughed from behind the counter and mixed him up another one. He nodded. “You’re covered, my man.”
Sodaman looked back at Miss Fortune. She could see the bottom of a glass bottle over his left eye, where it had allegedly been stuck there after a magical accident. They’d started calling Summoner Stewardson “Sodason” back in his student days on that account, but (finding “Sodason” a bit awkward) his peers had gradually changed that to “Sodaman”. Interesting story. Very odd Summoner. But sharp, and clever: a good Summoner to have linked with you if things got crazy.
She gave him a stern look in reply. “We’re not far from Nyroth.” She looked to the bartender. “I think that’s enough drinks for the Summoner.”
Irelia was nowhere to be seen. Probably meditating or something.
Sodaman laughed. “Okay, mom.”
Miss Fortune took a sip of her drink to hide her smirk. Demacian aqua felix. For such a miserably depressing people, they made some good liquor.
Sodaman continued. “I promise not to do anything, you know, dangerous, like flying to some crazy continent nobody’s ever seen and hoping we don’t get eaten by their version of Baron Nashor.”
The room brightened with sunlight. Miss Fortune caught a glimpse of something in the corner of her eye. She turned her head to look, and almost dropped her glass.
They had suddenly come out of the storm. She saw Nyroth spread out beneath a bright blue sky, illuminated by a brilliant yellow sun. The poros squeaked and huddled beside her boots.
She stood. Floating above the new continent was a … she didn’t even have the words for it. A building. A palace? Much larger than the zeppelin that carried them. Made of gleaming golden metal, with vivid ruby and emerald currents of what could only be magic of some kind rushing along tracks carved in the facade. A city in the clouds, with winged figures hovering in their path.
She put her glass down and pointed at Sodaman. “Time to earn your pay, Summoner.”
As she made her way with Sodaman and Purple to the bridge, the zeppelin tilted and slowed. They were making a course correction.
She went through the door to the bridge and saw that the winged figures were directing them to a landing pad.
Miss Fortune walked side-by-side with Irelia as they disembarked from the zeppelin. The delegation waiting for them was accompanied by about thirty gold-armored guards with spears. She noticed other guards hidden off to the sides, hunkered down in corners and watching. Snipers, presumably.
Did Nyroth have Champions? If not, then despite the numbers gap there wasn’t much here that two Champions with Summoner backup had to fear. Still, Miss Fortune was not looking to turn this into a fight.
A handsome man in bright yellow robes stepped forward. Like the others, he seemed more or less human, aside from the wings.
“You come from across the sea,” he began. His tone suggested that he did not find the concept nearly as astonishing as most Valoranians had found the revelation that another continent lay within a few days’ travel of their shores.
Miss Fortune swept off her hat and pressed it to her chest as she made a graceful bow. “From Valoran.” She straightened up once more. “Sarah Fortune. And this frightening woman to my left is Irelia.”
Irelia shot her a look. Miss Fortune winked. “Oh, don’t worry. She doesn’t bite.”
Irelia stepped forward. “Ionia sends greetings to Nyroth. We come in peace, hopeful for friendship.”
Did Karma write that down for you?
The Nyrothian studied them. “Your speech is strange. And yet we comprehend.”
That was the first thing that caught Miss Fortune’s attention. This man was obviously someone of importance and learning, and yet he seemed surprised by a simple translation spell.
Irelia spoke. “It is a spell.” She paused. Our leaders wish to talk. You may ask them about our magic.”
Miss Fortune laughed softly. “Oh, Irelia.” She tisked, and looked back at the man. “You don’t know anyone named Kayle, do you? Tall, likes swords, big fluffy wings.” She made a flapping gesture.
The man laughed. Good. He was loosening up. First rule when talking with someone while guns are pointed at you: let them look you in the eyes. Second rule: get them laughing with you.
“Your words are indeed most strange.” But his smile faded. “We request that you leave Nyroth in your vessel.”
Miss Fortune opened her mouth to protest. The man held up his hand. “You may return in one week. We will receive you then in friendship.”
Miss Fortune didn’t even have to look at Irelia to know she was bristling.
“You do not need a week to prepare for friendship,” Irelia objected. “We have questions for you.”
Miss Fortune attempted to defuse the situation. “This place seems sturdy enough. This fellow looks to be a fair dealer. They’ll still be here in a week.” And even if they’re packed in like sardines in there, this place isn’t big enough to hold an army that could threaten us, not after any amount of preparation.
She heard Sodaman’s voice in her mind. I don’t know, MF. I’m sensing all kinds of crazy magic here. This whole place is wrong. Like, not Void-wrong. Just … well, another kind of wrong.
Cool your heels, Sodaman. This is working out just fine. Relly’s just going nuts because she’s trying to follow all those Orders, and now things are changing up.''
“Yes. It will,” the Nyrothian confirmed. He looked at Irelia.
She heard Bavarois speak up. “Excuse me, sir. But I must know.” He gestured at the mainland below. “What happened down there?”
The Nyrothian tensed. “A great calamity has poisoned that land. Do not venture there if you value your lives.” He shook his head. “This city is our refuge.”
Miss Fortune studied him. So open. So trusting. It didn’t seem right. He’d just tipped his hand, and she could not see why. Unless they really are the last … and his people haven’t had to play diplomacy for a long time.
“Ionia stands ready to do what can be done.”
“And for that we thank you. But first, what we ask is one week.”
To her surprise, Miss Fortune next heard Venia Vis speaking. She looked back to see him walking forward. “Mind if I stick around?” He walked easily, wearing one of his amiable grins, and carrying a brown leather satchel.
He stepped ahead of Miss Fortune and Irelia. “I’ve got some information here about Valoran. Our leaders,” he glanced back at the two Champions, “have authorized me to share it with you.”
The Nyrothian looked down at the satchel. Miss Fortune could see the curiosity rising up behind his eyes. “You wish to remain here? In the city? Knowing that you will have no means of contacting Valoran until we are ready to receive their next delegation?”
Venia Vis nodded. “The League of Legends has authorized me to remain here on a temporary basis.” He slowly opened the satchel’s flap and took out a sheet of parchment stamped with the golden seal of the Institute of War, along with the signatures of the members of the Council. He held it out for Irelia and Miss Fortune to see.
Sodaman’s perception layered over Miss Fortune’s, allowing her to see the detailwork of the arcane symbols. Seals check out. That’s from the Institute alright.
The Nyrothian nodded his head. “Very well, then. I would be pleased to show you our city. We have many questions.”
Miss Fortune frowned. She wasn’t fond of the idea of a Summoner representing all of Valoran here. On the other hand, Venia Vis seemed on the level.
Are we going to let them do this? Sodaman seemed rather surprised himself. It should be all of us staying.
We’ll let the League make its play. If Vis wants to spend a week with a bunch of bird-people … it’s his head if it goes wrong.
Miss Fortune smiled. “A week, then. Pleasure meeting you.” She looked at Venia Vis. “Have a good time. And thanks for the drinks.”
Venia Vis nodded. “Look forward to making you some more.” He paused, and gave Miss Fortune a serious look. “By the way … take a good look at those mountains as you’re leaving. The ones on the north. They’ve got a nice shape to them. Maybe bring back a sketch. I think they’d appreciate that.”
Miss Fortune furrowed her brow. She’d seen a massive mountainous rim in the center of the mainland, but she had no idea what the Summoner was talking about. Slowly, she nodded. “Good idea.”
It was only when they took off, and she could take another good look below, that she realized what he’d meant.
Karma entered the Institute, accompanied by her most trusted Summoners. The zeppelin expedition had returned, and would soon make their report. She’d spoken with the wisest seers in all of Ionia, yet none of them could see beyond the veil into this strange new land of Nyroth.
As she walked through the entrance hall, she looked up at the grotesque scene painted above the archway that led to the Hall of Assembly. In its wild brushstrokes she saw the destruction of Valoran portrayed with ghastly fervor. The original, which this mural replicated on a larger scale, dated back to a Rune War nearly a thousand years ago, when a prophet awoke from a terrible vision and painted what he had seen. It was titled Shall It Come To Pass?, and it was an artistic masterpiece from a man who (so the stories went) had only ever dabbled with a brush. Its surreal, savage imagery amplified its theme of supernatural destruction: leyline explosions blasting open enormous
chasms, stars falling from the sky and smashing great cities into rubble, panicked masses of people set aflame. As a work of art, perhaps its most notable feature was the sharp contrast between the vivid blurs of color in the foreground and the stark gray mountains in the background.
But its greatest significance had never been artistic. It was a question which all who entered this hall were compelled to ask: shall it come to pass? Shall this prophecy unfold? Or will the nations of Valoran, through the League of Legends, hold the demons of war in check? It was significant that neither the terrain nor the cities in the painting closely resembled those found in any particular part of Valoran: it depicted a destruction more total than that, the destruction of civilization itself. All the many nations of Valoran were bound together by this common threat.
As Karma walked through the arch and entered the hall, she renewed her vow to ensure this catastrophe would not come to pass. There would never be another Rune War. Ionia would strive to prevent the discovery of this new land of Nyroth from disturbing the great balance of power expressed through the League, while protecting this new land’s inhabitants from those nations of Valoran that would surely seek to seize its riches by force.
The Ionian delegation took its place in the gallery. Leaders and Champions of every nation in Valoran, together with selected Summoners sworn to their service, had gathered here to receive the report of the recently returned zeppelin expedition, and to hear the League’s decree. From Noxus, Jericho Swain and his officers. From Bilgewater, Captain Varn Yancey, well-known as a mere figurehead of the pirate clans and merchant guilds that ran the port, together with Prince Ushi of the Marai. From Zaun, Magnus Dunderson with a row of sharply dressed executives and slightly more awkward-looking head researchers, including the brilliant Dr. Merricurry. From the Shadow Isles, Karthus sitting alongside several robed figures whose auras churned with the Isles’ necromantic sorcery. From Bandle City, the Mothership Elders. From Piltover, its Mayor. From Demacia, Prince Jarvan IV, expression stoic as he took his father’s place, with Therese Buvelle at his side. And from the Freljord, Ashe and Sejuani, sitting two seats apart: close enough to make a show of unity before the other factions, far enough to make their independence clear to their supporters.
High Councilor Vessaria Kolminye rose from her seat and gave a courteous bow. It was said that no bow in Valoran was measured so minutely as the High Councilor’s: deep enough to show respect, but not so low as to compromise the League’s fragile aura of leadership.
“On behalf of the Council of Equity, I recognize the representatives of the nations of the League of Legends. My greetings to you, and to the honored Champions of the League, and to my fellow Summoners.”
She took her seat behind the immense crystal podium. “The Council shall hear any opening motions or remarks.”
Karma had expected silence. Instead, she heard a chair pushed back from the Zaunite delegation. She looked over and saw Summoner Naggarok standing. She recalled that he had declared for Bilgewater in this dispute, and noticed that indeed the green edging on his robes was more the aquamarine hue of Bilgewater than the chemical green of Zaun, but it appeared that he had chosen to sit with the Zaunites for this conference.
Staring, Naggarok spoke. “Yes, Councilor. Any particular reason you’ve dragged this out for so long?”
Kolminye glanced to Dunderson, who nodded, so as to show he stood behind the question. She nodded curtly in return. “Summoner Naggarok of Zaun is recognized. For the record, Summoner, I would ask that you explain more fully what you mean.”
Naggarok scowled. “The holdup with Nyroth. Why so long a delay? It’s been a month since it was found, and the first expedition went out a mere four days ago. I have dealt with some bureaucracy and know its complications well, but this delay is absurd in light of how deeply this discovery affects Valoran. Call it a formal protest if you would wish.” Kolminye glanced back at Dunderson, who nodded again, while Naggarok continued with his tirade. “Either you’re trying to stall for time for the League to conduct its own clandestine investigation, or the League was unacceptably unprepared for this eventuality. Or, dare I wonder, is it both?”
Kolminye frowned. “The discovery of a new continent is a complex matter, raising several legal questions of first impression. We are considering them with due care.”
Naggarok did not appear satisfied. Maintaining his gaze on Kolminye, he renewed his attack. “Now that sounds like a bureaucratic answer. A new land awaits exploration, but no, first we must voyage across a sea of paperwork! Then what they say is true: start a fire in the Council chambers and it’ll burn down the Institute while a League emissary stands in front of the flames saying Hear ye, and be warned! The Council of the League of Legends declares that it shall soon consider procurement of a water bucket!”
Hushed laughter spread across the room. Naggarok waited for it to fade, then continued. “Every day you have delayed the exploration, you have denied the people of Valoran access to the limitless possibilities that Nyroth may contain. Bilgewater and Zaun both stand by ready to tap into the potential that lies on the isle, but the League is too busy whispering sweet nothings into its books.”
A yordle Summoner from a table sitting beside the Council, the overseer of factional disputes, stood up. He seemed rather irate. His name placard read “Cupcake Trap”, which Karma quickly back-translated into the matching Ionian characters.
Summoner Cupcake Trap held up a stack of much-annotated papers. “You think this is easy?! We haven’t had a terra nova question since the League was founded!”
Naggarok began to reply, but was interrupted by the furious yordle. “And before you bring up Ceruleana, its ownership was adjudicated by the law of artifacts!”
Kolminye raised her hand. “We will have order.” She glanced at Cupcake Trap, who frowned and sat back down. “Summoner Cupcake Trap. I believe you do have a statement on this topic. Perhaps its announcement should come earlier than planned, in light of the Summoner’s question.”
Cupcake Trap nodded as he opened a folder and took out a sheet of notes. He glanced them over, then looked out to the audience. “Upon the return of the first October expedition, we shall hear a special round of petitions concerning certain Champions who wish to make declarations of support for the participants in the Nyrothian dispute. Each member-disputant shall be granted one such petition. Within one week thereafter, an accounting shall be taken, and the member-disputant which has most prevailed thus far upon the Fields of Justice shall be permitted, in consultation with the Council, to establish the first Nyrothian port. Thereafter, all members-disputant shall be authorized to explore Nyroth within bounds duly set by this Council.”
A hush fell over the room. Meaningful glances flashed between those present. At last, they would voyage to Nyroth.
Kolminye turned to Naggarok. Her expression was rather dour. “I expect you are satisfied?”
Naggarok looked to Dunderson, who shrugged. “So we each add a Champion to our rosters, and the League promises that exploration will come ‘Soon’. No, I cannot say that I am satisfied, but it is clear that we will not have a satisfactory answer from this Council today. For the sake of sparing my esteemed colleagues a further round of non-answers from the Council, I will leave it at that. No further questions.” He took his seat once more.
Kolminye scanned the room. “Is there anything further, or shall we proceed?” After a few seconds of silence, she did so.
“Very well. The Council’s expedition has returned from Nyroth but an hour ago.” She looked pointedly at the Zaunite delegation. “Pursuant to the terms of the expedition’s charter, all members of that expedition have been sequestered here to await this gathering. They have spoken not a word to another soul concerning the expedition or its findings.”
The High Councilor gestured to the guards at the door. “You may bring them in.”
The guards opened the door. A League emissary exited first, followed closely by Miss Sarah Fortune of Bilgewater, side-by-side with Irelia. Behind them walked Summoners Quin “Sodaman” Stewardson, of Bilgewater, and Murasaki “Purple” Bavarois, of Ionia. Various crew followed.
High Councilor Kolminye looked down to the delegation, addressing the emissary first. “Summoner Uto, what have you to report?”
Karma felt a strange sense of dread, though its source she could not divine. In the corner of her eye, she saw Summoner Paddo, seated with several other members of the Riotous Fists Clan, covering his face with his hands.
Uto drew back his hood and looked out at the audience. He did not look well. Slowly, he unscrewed the cap of a scroll case and slid out a sheet of parchment. “This … this is a sketch of the Nyrothian landscape, from, from the center of the mainland, an area about half the size of Valoran itself.” He handed the scroll case back to one of his crewmen, and unrolled the sheet. “I can attest to its accuracy.”
He held it up. His hands were shaking, and it took Karma a few moments to get a clear look.
She saw a mountain range surrounding a blasted landscape of chasms and craters. Two high peaks, three low peaks, one high peak. Her heart skipped a beat, as the looming background of Shall It Come To Pass? flashed through her mind. This was the mountain range from the vision of Valoran’s destruction painted all those centuries ago in a fit of prophetic delusion.
Summoner Uto walked forward. His eyes sought for something, and his uneasy steps brought him to the Demacian delegation’s table. He handed the parchment to Prince Jarvan, who stared down at it in shock.
Uto looked out at the gallery, helplessly. “It’s already happened. It’s already come to pass. I just hope that, my only hope is that, perhaps Valoran can be spared the same … fate … ”
He trailed off. Karma gathered that the man had tried to arrange some suitable words in his mind for the historic occasion, but his composure had failed.
Waves of murmurs and whispers spread through the room. Karma herself was at a loss for words. It had always been deemed possible that the effects of the Rune Wars had spread beyond Valoran, but prior to the discovery of another land, another Valoran, this had been a matter for academic speculation. She had dedicated her life to protecting Valoran from another such catastrophe through the League. Never had she imagined that when the League was formed it had already been too late. Much too late.
That painting was from hundreds of years ago. The timing of prophecy was a delicate question of cosmic balance, and the reverberations that traveled along the latticework of Order that held Runeterra together. So tightly woven was that lattice, the seers said, that prophecy of the future could come on the eve of a catastrophe, or a thousand years before, but nearly always to a person physically present at the site of the future event. Visions that traveled great distances, in turn, nearly always occurred simultaneous to the catalyzing events.
Karma looked to the Champions and Summoners at her side. Nyroth was no longer simply a challenge to the balance of power. This new land compelled them to look upon the realization of their darkest fears. The violence Valoranians had inflicted on the cosmos in their thirst for power had exacted a cost, paid by innocents a world away.
She took a slow breath as the sounds of argument rose up in the chamber. There would be time to reflect upon this later. For now, the League needed her guidance.
While the Council was debating, deep within the halls of the Frostguard Lissandra stood over the shard of true ice won by the Freljord’s Champions on the Fields of Justice. Their victory pleased her: it freed her of the tedium of bargaining with the Shadow Isles.
Her spell slowly melted the ice. Most curious, to find true ice on Nyroth. She had not expected this.
She reached out with her arcane senses. Those who relied on sight would surely see only blurry shadows within; to her, true ice was transparent, even magnifying. The figure within the ice became clear. It was a man, dressed in strange clothes. Not very thick. Not the sort of clothes in which one would long survive in the Freljord. More curious still.
Fractures spread through the thinning ice as its arcane matrix destabilized. It fell away in a crash. The man within gasped for breath.
Lissandra leaned down and took firm hold of his chin. She tipped a flask forward and poured a curative tincture into his mouth. He began to gag; she gave his head a small tilt, and it flowed smoothly down his throat. She felt him relax as the potion’s calming properties took effect.
“There, there. My name is Lissandra, friend. Welcome to the Freljord.” She smiled.
He answered her with strange words.
“Kaithos telein xenatha!”
Was there a fault in the translation spell? No, she had cast it herself.
“Calm yourself, friend.”
“Xenatha telein, telein angeos!”
Lissandra frowned. “Seithir!”
Her attendant came to her side. “Yes?”
Lissandra stepped back. “I must consult the library.” She turned to Seithir. “See to our new friend. Ensure he doesn’t do anything rash in his confusion. He has much to tell us of Nyroth.”
Each of the four factions that are party to this dispute—Bilgewater, Ionia, the Shadow Isles, and the Freljord—have convened a meeting of their Champions and Summoners. The first order of business for each faction is to decide which new Champion will be recruited to their cause.
Choose wisely, Summoners.
Next Update: The Harrowing Approaches