Arithon - Role in the Story (Stormed Fortress)
|Spoiler warning: Contains plot elements from Stormed Fortress.|
Third Age 5671: Arithon is collected by the Biedar Crone and her tribesfolk at the Paravian focus circle in the Sanpashir ruins, based on a prophecy referring to him as Mother Dark's Chosen. The crone sings to Arithon on his first awakening and reveals that his presence has been foretold for longer than the Biedar have lived on Athera. She reunites him with Elshian's lyranthe (left in the ruins on his last visit) to help him cope through his nightmares and transports him to a private place to heal deep in the desert. Arithon awakens to find Sulfin Evend bound and gagged before him. The pair discuss the Curse and the origins of necromancy and Arithon promises not to be present at the seige of Alestron. Arithon is visited by the Biedar Crone who says that he will "visit death twice again". Out of concern for his friends, he chooses to leave Sanpashir before he is fully healed.
He separates from his desertmen escort two weeks later and gains a clan escort in Selkwood. His recovery in nature is interrupted by Glendien, who attempts to provoke him again but fails, and Kyrialt. Clan scouts inform him of Sulfin Evend's slow muster along the southshore and Arithon reveals that those actions have bought Selkwood a margin of safety. When the group finally reaches Lord Erlien, Arithon pledges his support to defend Selkwood from the Alliance assault. Erlien allows Arithon to address the clan elders. Refusing to fight or spin Shadow, he suggests using his Masterbard's gifts to raise wards around Selkwood. He experiments by awakening 12 Paravian markers in the free wilds. Overcome by exposure to the mysteries, he is carried out of range by Kyrialt to recuperate.
Through his connection with Elaira, Arithon experiences firsthand the attempt by Dakar, Sidir, and Elaira to change Jeynsa's course of action in Alestron. When this fails, Arithon tells Elaira that he will come anyhow for the sake of the s'Valerient family. He asks that Sidir stand as his spokesman for Fionn Areth's many questions. Arithon asks for permission from Erlien to visit the King's Glade in Selkwood. The High Earl agrees as long as Kyrialt accompanies him. The pair travel together to the entrance to the King's Glade and are granted invitation to enter by the sentinel oaks. At the center of the grove, Arithon strives to follow the path used by ancient Paravians rather than wait for a chance to present his petition. He is met by an Athlien Paravian who cleanses his aura of the Mistwraith's curse with the aid of other sunchildren. Arithon awakens back in the King's Glade with Alithiel in his arms. in recovery, he notices that he still retains the scar from Lysaer's light bolt. Ten days later, Davien offers to give Arithon and Kyrialt firsthand knowledge of the ground assault at Alestron. Exposed through his mage-sight to the assault and the raising of Alestron's Paravian wards, he allows Davien to put him to sleep to recover.
Towards the end of autumn, Arithon is teleported to Alestron by Davien. He is accompanied by Kyrialt and Glendien and brings Alithiel and Davien's cloak. When Dakar and Mearn visit the drumkeep where Arithon is staying with Elaira, Arithon reveals that he is finally free of the curse. Mearn escorts him and Dakar to a meeting with Duke Bransian where the Duke's guards prevent Dakar from entering. The Duke challenges him to a sword fight over his plan to pull Jeynsa out of the conflict. Alithiel's wards go active in Arithon's defense and he reaffirms that he has no intention to kill anyone in the war. After learning belatedly that Arithon has arrived in Alestron, Jeynsa confronts him just before he performs in Dame Dawr's home. She is accompanied there by Talvish, Sidir, and Fionn Areth. Arithon's performance for Dawr breaks through Jeynsa's grief. After the concert, Arithon's time with Elaira is interrupted by Fianzia, who has been sent on Talvish's orders. Elaira and Arithon rush to Sidir's aid and use their combined Koriani and Masterbard powers to try and save the dying clansman. When Selidie attempts to interfere with the healing through Lirenda, Arithon alters his music to heal Lirenda as well. Selidie severs the connection before this can work. Selidie is unable to interfere with Sidir's healing after Alithiel and the wards under Alestron sound in Sidir's defense.
With the help of Mearn and Dame Dawr's carriage, Arithon, an unconscious Elaira, Dakar, and Sidir return to the guest tower. Short on time in the unfolding crisis, Arithon realizes that consummation with Elaira is the quickest path to recovery from exhaustion brought on by magecraft. He requests simples from Glendien and revokes Dakar's permissions to ensure his privacy. The couple's consummation raises the wards in Alithiel and Alestron's walls, cutting off Selidie Prime's sigil of fertility.
Arithon agrees to a closed hearing with Duke Bransian to avoid public exposure of the Duke's conspiracy. He reaffirms his aid to defang the siege to save lives, lays claim to Talvish's service, and demands service of the guard who murdered Sidir until Jeynsa is safe back in Halwythwood. In the following days, he traverses Alestron, listening for a way to awaken the warded walls. He confides in Elaira that he has not found a way to save Alestron, but will try to save Jeynsa at least on the following day. He spends one last night with Elaira. Arithon commands Sidir to see Jeynsa safe back to Halwythwood, and walks to Watch Keep with Kyrialt, wearing Davien's cloak and wielding Alithiel. He uses his Masterbard's arts to awaken Alithiel, which forces a reevaluation of priorities in all combatants involved in the Siege of Alestron. In the company of Dakar, Arithon sustains the powers of the sword to allow travelers from both camps to escape. The song also grants Lysaer a brief moment of sanity during which he plans to leave the siege to tend to Avenor. In an attempt to keep Lysaer on the battlefield and away from fleeing refugees, Dakar and Elaira reach Arithon's awareness to stop Alithiel's song. They are successful, but the overwhelming Paravian presence saps Dakar's will to life. Arithon plays his lyranthe to counter the effects.
When the incoming Evenstar is threatened by a bolt of Light, Arithon reflexively defends it with his gift of Shadow. He keeps the boat under Shadow while Parrien's war galley tries to save the crew and supply. They clear the decks and tow the charred boat through the Sea Gate, but an Alliance boarding party has already killed most of the crew. A mortally wounded Feylind returns his royal signet and Arithon promises to watch over her children. As fighting intensifies, Arithon refuses to support Alestron's defense, believing that more Shadow would destroy the opening for Lysaer to recover his sanity under free will. He explains his risky plan to appear dead by tying his spirit to Alithiel as he did in Daon Ramon Barrens. Alithiel refuses to awaken, and Elaira recognizes that the plan was intended to keep Fionn Areth safe.
When the sea quarter is breached, Arithon and his delegation vacate the guest keep and travel down to the sea quarter. He uses his Masterbard talents to help Elaira and Glendien with healing and refuses to offer further defenses when Parrien visits on Duke Bransian's behalf. Angered by Arithon's refusal, Parrien attempts to assassinate him. Kyrialt gives his life in defense, but Arithon is still gravely wounded. Without time for a more measured approach to spirit-walk, Elaira uses the Atheran crystal from Highscarp to staunch Arithon's bleeding. Arithon is covered with Davien's cloak, which conceals his identity, and Elaira, Dakar, Talvish, Glendien, and Parrien arrange in subterfuge as the first Alliance forces enter the sea quarter. Convinced of Elaira's healing care, a sergeant arranges for the healers and wounded to be transported out of danger to the main Alliance camp.
Sulfin Evend meets the galley bearing Elaira and insists on examining all of the wounded to make sure there are no fugitives in the group. In spite of the magic in Davien's cloak, Sulfin Evend's s'Gannley gifts allow him to recognize Arithon disguised as a blind man. Parrien regains consciousness and attacks Sulfin Evend, reclaimed by Selidie Prime's geas, causing Talvish to draw Alithiel. The sword's song incapacitates everyone except Elaira, Talvish, and Dakar, and Sethvir (through the Atheran crystal) urges Elaira to escape on the tide. The group escapes to the Cildein Ocean in a scheduled courier sloop, but Arithon does not awaken after Alithiel's song.
At Athir, Elaira chooses an untested path between the machinations of the Fellowship and Koriathain to save Arithon. He is placed at the Paravian focus circle with Talvish sworn to stand watch. To involve the Fellowship in any possible traps that Selidie might have planned, Elaira has Dakar swear an oath of debt over the crown of Rathain rather than Arithon's name. With Parrien protecting her, Elaira enacts a Koriani spell of possession that will allow her to interact with Arithon through Glendien's willing body. In Glendien's body, Elaira calls Arithon back with her love and triggers the land's flux through the focus circle. Koriani scryers become aware of the rite but cannot interfere. Arithon is made whole again and sung to sleep by Biedar singing in Sanpashir, unaware of his daughter's conception. He awakens with Elaira, under Talvish's guard. Asandir arrives at Athir and Arithon gives him a writ exonerating Parrien s'Brydion for Kyrialt's murder. Asandir suggests that he may be able to aid the remaining defenders at Alestron.