Grimward

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A grimward is a location on Athera where a great drake has died unrequited and dreams of vengeance. A grimward contains the "dire dreams of dragon haunts, a force with the potential for mass destruction"[1], and are warded by powerful Paravian and Fellowship spells. Following the disappearance of the Paravians, the care of these wards was ceded to the corporeal members of the Fellowship of Seven (mainly Sethvir and Asandir).

Grimwards are relatively rare, as most vanquished, unmated drakes fall into the ocean where their lives end without pain. There are only eighteen grimwards recorded at Althain Tower. Ten can be seen on the Interactive Map of Paravia:

  1. Near Mincress in Tysan
  2. Near Middlecross in Tysan
  3. In the Bittern Desert in Tysan
  4. North of Scarpdale in Havish (an Unnamed drake)
  5. South of Redburn in Havish
  6. Daon Ramon Barrens in Rathain
  7. West of the Athir Ruins in Rathain (Alqwerik's haunt)
  8. In Radmoore Downs in Melhalla (Haspastion's haunt)
  9. In the Salt Fens in West Shand (Eckracken's haunt)
  10. North of the Sanpashir Desert in Shand

The other eight do not appear on the most recently published map:

  1. Near Cainford in Tysan[2]
  2. Location not revealed
  3. Location not revealed
  4. Location not revealed
  5. Location not revealed
  6. Location not revealed
  7. Location not revealed
  8. Location not revealed

In the author's FAQ, mention is made of the eighteenth grimward, which is not on the surface of Athera.[3] There were also grimwards on Kathtairr at one time, and the Paravians who sealed them paid a terrible price.

Spoiler warning: Contains plot elements from Alliance of Light.

Boundary Wards

Grimwards are not particularly large -- the smallest is about a half a league across, and the larger ones could be five to ten leagues across. The Fellowship have surrounded the grimwards with deadly guard spells to protect the wider populace from what is inside. Because only corporate Fellowship sorcerers with their full faculties are able to interact safely with a grimward, these wards can only be tested or retuned by Asandir or Sethvir. While the wards are down, a discorporate sorcerer will stand guard and turn away humans and game.

The protective wards span both sides of the veil, crossing time and space. There are no more deadly spells in existence, and these wards are the only way that the Fellowship know how to protect the world from the dreams of dead dragons. When multiple grimwards are unstable, Sethvir notes that only the recall of a live dragon would be able to prevent the chaos from devouring the world.

Inside a Grimward

Crossing into and out of a grimward does not have a predictable duration -- the passage can take hours or even months. Entering a grimward cuts off all connections to the outside world, such as a mage's subliminal connections to the sun, moon, and stars or the ability to maintain a conscious direction. Sethvir cannot see inside of a grimward through his earth link. Should humans enter a grimward, they must be careful not to change or deplete the environment.

"Kill no beast, break no branch or leaf from a living tree, set no fire and remove no twig or pebble." - Dakar [4]

The power of a grimward is such that a man who dies inside is permanently struck from the Fatemaster's Wheel for all time. The reality of a grimward is subject to change at anytime, with the landscape, season, and visceral sensations shifting to the whims of the dead drake's dreams. When viewed through mage sight, individual aspects of the scenery have no unique Name or energies, although the recent corpse of a young drake emanates these energies.

Without the taming influence of Fellowship power, only another great drake could survive inside of a grimward, because it could remake the torn structure of its being.

Spoiler warning: Contains plot elements from Stormed Fortress.

When Seshkrozchiel encounters the haunts of five Korias horsemen in the Scarpdale grimward, she suggests that a circle of Athlien dancers might be able to separate their spirits from the weave of the dead drake's dreaming.

Trivia

  • While inside of a grimward, Dakar has the intuition that the sword, Alithiel, should not be drawn.
  • Drake Skulls in a state of unrest could lead to the birth of a new grimward.

References

  1. © Janny Wurts, Traitor's Knot, p. 555 (US-Hardback Glossary)
  2. © Janny Wurts, Fugitive Prince, p. 46 (US-Hardback)
  3. © Janny Wurts, Grand Conspiracy, p. 423 (US-Hardback), and Author's FAQ
  4. © Janny Wurts, Fugitive Prince, p. 408 (US-Hardback)