Morgun Forest

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The Morgun Forest
This is a bashing area
This area contains aggressive mobs.
This is a fishing area
1Morgun Spring
2Urubamba River

Bordered on the west by the Vashnar mountains and on the east by the Urubamba river, the Morgun is one of the largest forests on the continent of Sapience, and certainly the most unusual. Few animals dare to enter its dark eaves, and those who do are rarely seen again. The leafy halls of the Morgun are home to an ancient race of living trees. It is rumoured that dark dryads dwell deep within the forests, and travelers have brought back stories of strange melancholy creatures called the Nayar, whose haunting music can at times be heard echoing through the woods. Some say that the forest is ruled by an ancient council of five living trees, but few have been able to verify the tale, since the dark paths of the forests are carefully guarded by rampaging hemlock bushes and dangerous mists that dwell in the lowlands.


Date Event
110 MA The Black Forest south of Thera rises up and consumes the village.
420 MA A loud crash of collapsing stone rocks the Morgun Forest, scaring away massive flocks of birds. Finding nothing else amiss in the woods, adventurers attempt to inspect the Monolith only to discover impenetrable brambles in their path.


Before the Black Forest

In a previous Age, one before the Great Artifice, the Morgun Forest stood as testament to the power of nature. The flora of the Morgun were more active than most of what one would find in the other forests of Sapience. At some unknown point in time, the ancestors of the citizens of Arbothia decided to settle in the area. Being unable to remove the nuisance of the trees from the land they wanted to settle, the settlers wove a powerful spell to enchant the trees and put them to sleep with the help of a Druid named Scipter in an event known as the Night of the Scythe The trees that survived slumbered, becoming quiet and unmoving like those in other forests. The settlers chopped down the trees for timber, and built the settlement that would come to be the village of Thera.

The Leaf-cutter Invasion

Time passed, and with it came the Great Artifice. Even the villagers of Thera forgot that the forest had once been awake, and that the trees and bushes had moved about as they pleased. The Therans went about their daily lives as craftsmen and harvesters until one fateful day when the forest was touched by a jungle. A group of toucans took wing, flying on a path different from the one their ilk usually followed. One of these birds was ill, and it perished on the odd path, plummeting into the Black Forest. The toucans of the Itzatl Rainforest have a symbiotic relationship with a type of parasitic ant. In the rainforest, these leaf-cutting ants served to trim the thick foliage of the jungle trees, but in a deciduous forest they served to upset the entire ecosystem. Some of these ants emerged from the corpse of the toucan and began to infest the local trees, stripping leaf and bark in a ravenous fashion. Duiran took note of the invaders and attempted to thin their numbers, but no matter how many of the ants were slain, more kept hatching.

Slyphe became desperate to quell the invasion and turned to Chakrasul as a potential source of aid. The Lady of Corruption suggested that Necromancy might be employed to kill a ring of trees, containing the spread of the ants. Realizing that Duiran would not suffer the idea of Extermination being used in the forest, She instead suggested that flame might be used. Duiran remained unwilling to accept Her suggestion and She grew irritated. In Her frustration, She touched an ancient oak tree nearby, brushing it with Her Divine Essence. Everyone present was shocked as a feminine shape fell from the tree and coalesced into the form of a beautiful dryad. Rather than claiming any sort of right to the dryad, Chakrasul withdrew stating that forest issues were not a concern of Hers and that Her advice was clearly not needed.

The dryad sobbed, explaining that she was in pain from the attacks by the ants as well as the citizens of Thera, who came to chop down the trees for varying reasons. Those present were cautious of the dryad, not certain if they should trust a creature that seemed to have been created by Chakrasul's touch. The dryad became frustrated with the lack of action from the forestals and she embedded herself back in the ancient oak, refusing to emerge again. The dryad's appearance was another event to ponder, but it did little to suggest how the problem of the ants could be contained. Someone postulated that fire could be employed, and the ancient oak rustled in response to the statement. The oak seemed to encourage the idea, and the small field where the tree stood was set ablaze. The ants upon the tree popped and burst into tiny flames as they began to fall off of the oak. The tree shuddered, shaking the burning ants from its form as it commanded, "Get those flames off of me!"

The tree's statement stunned those present, as they were not accustomed to trees speaking. They quickly doused the tree, putting out the flames that had ended its torment at the mandibles of the ants. The oak spoke little, expressing only that he intended to awaken the others of his kind. In the coming months, he wandered about the forest, stomping on the ants as he pondered his course of action. One day the answer came to him, and his voice roared across the land as he called upon the Elder Trees to awaken. First the Willow, then the Beech, the Pine, and the Maple were awakened. Each of these Elder Trees awoke the lesser trees of their kind, and they all bowed to the Elder Oak, proclaiming him "Arghash, King of the Black Forest." The trees revealed that the Black Forest had once been known as the Morgun Forest and that no animal made its home there, for it was a place where the flora reigned supreme.

With Torches Raised High

Time passed, and the settlers of Thera became more and more uneasy over the activity of their southerly neighbors. The Theran Priest, Arboth perused the ancient tomes at his disposal and learned the truth about the village. Knowing that the land his peers lived on had once been part of the Morgun domain, he deduced that it was only a matter of time before the living trees marched on the village to reclaim it. He rallied those willing and able to fight, gathering a mob together to defend the village through offense. The children and craftsmen of Thera fled the village for safety, taking refuge far away. The mob left into the forest, armed with axes and torches. As they moved into the forest, they used their makeshift tools of war to cut down trees and set the forest ablaze. The living trees resisted, and Duiran came to their aid, putting out fires with water and ice while the numbers of the Therans slowly dwindled. The priest cried out, rallying the mob to continue their crusade, even after the trees had become victors. None of the Duiranites harmed the priest though, as Arghash had requested that he be spared. The priest continued marching through the forest, ranting at the top of his lungs until he stumbled across the Elder Oak, who seized him up with his branches, berating him. The priest was fervent and would not listen to the tree's words. Arghash left, carrying the priest with him, intent on teaching him a lesson about respect. In the aftermath of the mob's assault, it was discovered that the village of Thera was empty, but their actions had not been forgotten. The malice shown by the Therans had awoken the hemlock bushes from their slumber. The bushes were guardians of the forest, and they lashed out indiscriminately at anything that was not a plant.

The Morgun Reborn

The trees were resolute in their goal, and the borders of what was once known as the Morgun Forest were blocked off by the Elder Trees. For many months, only a handful of Druids could manage to find a way into the forest, and the things they saw within were strange indeed. The songs of birds and buzzing of bees were absent from the forest. Where many innocuous flowers had grown before, poisonous blooms now took root. The message of the forest was clear. This was no place for creatures of flesh and blood; it was a realm of xylem and phloem.

When at last the Elder Trees moved and allowed those brave enough to venture into the forest, it had become almost unrecognizable. A lake was located at the center of the forest, one of its most distinguishing features. Mist made vision difficult in the lake surrounding the island, and it was inhabited by water spirits that hadn't been seen in the area previously. In a grassy clearing, Thera's well still stood as a final testament to the fact that a village had once stood on those grounds. Throughout the forest, the hemlock bushes prowled, stalking and battering any intruders, even Druids. Strange mists could be found in low-lying areas, and they were lethal. The first breath of the mists would inflict paralysis on an unwary victim, and subsequent breaths almost always led to death unless a quick rescue was performed. The forest was harsh and hostile.

Perhaps the most controversial change to the forest was the return of Morgun Island. The island was home to two strange humanoid statues. One was an obsidian statue of a masculine figure that appeared to be protecting the other, a feminine statue of green crystal. The statues seemed to be both alive and sculpted at the same time, and some insisted that they were the cursed forms of spirits of the forest. Few Druids had groves within the forest, but those that did became involved in attempts to discern the nature of the curse that had befallen the two figures and remove it. For years many different attempts were made with little success. It seemed that the unsettling statues and mists of the forest were there to stay.

The Attack of the Wild Bushes

The poisonous hemlock bushes had slept for many centuries, their little minds slumbering and seeing dreams of fighting. When in the chaos of fires and fighting with Thera they were jolted into awareness, a wild joy overtook them as they rushed around madly, attacking everything and anything that got in their way. Their small minds unable to take the excitement, they soon left the confines of Thera and rambled out onto the highways, gleefully preying on all unsuspecting travelers. After all, who could expect a perfectly innocent road bush to suddenly jump on you and try to beat you with its branches?

The forest folk attempted to herd the bushes back into the forest, but that proved quite difficult. Finally, the Elder Oak was awoken from his nap, and with the help of several other trees, the combined forces of the Oak and Duiran were able to shove the bushes back into the forest. The Oak read them a stern lecture about leaving the forest's premises, and the bushes, subdued and rather sulky, sneaked off into the forest to brood and wait for an unsuspecting victim to come around.

The Dark Bargains

Amelia, the Arch Dryad that had fallen out of the Elder Oak with Chakrasul's touch, and her consort, a nayar named Namal had been bewitched by the Goddess of Corruption. After his awakening, the Elder Oak struck a deal with Chakrasul. The Morgun Forest had been ruled by a council of Elder Trees, but he wanted more. He wanted to be the King of the Forest no matter the cost. He accepted Her Corruption in order to awaken the other trees of the forest and to be their superior. Blinded by his ambition, he did not realize that Chakrasul was bargaining with his dryad as well. Chakrasul appeared before Amelia, taking the form of a radiant dryad. She convinced Amelia to submit herself and Namal into Her service in exchange for the revival of the forest. Amelia was unaware of the pact between Chakrasul and Arghash, and she and Namal were split in twain. The bodies of the dryad and nayar remained on Morgun Island, while their souls served Chakrasul within the Castle of Despair.

Amelia's Prison Shatters

After years of trial and error, the dryad and nayar were freed from their prisons. Innumerable pearls were placed into the crystalline statue until it cracked, and a Druid located the crystallized essence of the forest and she placed it into the statue's arms causing both statues to shatter. Amelia was beset with questions from the curious forestals, but in the end only a couple of things became clear. The first was that Amelia's pact had meant nothing, for Arghash had bargained for the awakening of the forest himself. The other was that Amelia was pleased with the forest being awake, and she had no intent to change it from its corrupted state. The pair appeared weakened, and many attempts were made to bolster their strength in hopes that perhaps the Arch Dryad's stance on the forest's corruption would change if she felt stronger.

The Cleansing of the Morgun

Eventually, the shards of Amelia's crystalline prison began to be located throughout the forest. Upon touching her, the shards would shatter into a mist that would be absorbed into the dryad, seeming to make her seem a little bit stronger. Some members of Duiran and Enorian discovered that the shards of Amelia's prison could be purified in the Mirror of Purity in Enorian. When these shards were given to the dryad, they too exploded into a mist which she absorbed, but they appeared to cause her pain. In the end, the dryad was crippled by the purified shards, but the corruption of the forest persisted. Arghash carried Amelia and Namal to a barren spot in the forest, and Amelia began to claw at the ground near the spot where the Theran well still stood. It was discovered that her clawing was a fevered attempt to get to the Sacred Spring, which ran beneath the forest.

Using buckets of water purified in the Mirror of Purity, numerous heroes cleansed the Sacred Spring, but the corruption they purged from it remained in the cavern as a miasma. Calling on the Triumvirate of Duiran, a ritual was performed to cleanse the waters of their corruption permanently. Tendrils of the green vapor made their way into a well-hidden cave in the forest, where the Mirror of Corruption lay. The mist began to react with the minerals that the mirror was laced with, and as its face bulged in a reactive manner, Amelia screamed as her soul dissipated into the air, leaving behind only a wooden skeleton. Arghash fled the area, concerned that the corruption leaving the forest would be his end as well. As the mirror reacted more violently, it eventually shattered, collapsing the cave that housed it. With the source of the corruption gone, the trees of the forest were freed, and they began to recount the tale of Scipter, the rogue Druid that had helped pacify the forest so long ago.

The Forest Today

The poisonous hemlocks still defend the forest, though their zeal has subsided greatly since they were first awakened. The four remaining Elder trees have each chosen places to rest, and will occasionally offer a task to an adventurer wandering through. Animals do not call the Morgun home, save a lone jambaali. A young oakling named Meilan wanders about the forest waiting for the time when he will become the Elder of the Oaks that his uncle Arghash once was. The Temple of Omei can be accessed through a dreamlike area of the forest. Where the cave hiding the Mirror of Corruption once was, there is but a pile of rubble. One can still seek out the Theran well, in a grassy clearing. Nearby Namal can be found, fading from existence as he laments the wooden skeleton of his love, Amelia. Meayans, a type of dryad native to the Morgun wander about the forest along with their nayar mates. Despite the purging of the corruption, the forest is still a harsh place. Attacking the trees can cause one to be branded an enemy of the whole forest.

Notable denizens

Connected areas

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