This week, we begin a special series of Journals, featuring prominent figures from Dereth’s recent history, but before the times we’ve come to know ingame. First up, an absent-minded Jacinth looks back on a great hunter, explorer, and Dereth’s other most famous archer, Lilitha:
History, some say, only extends back to this morning’s breakfast, because that’s as far as some care to remember. It’s a fairly cynical view of the average person’s perspective, but here on Dereth, we have ironically come to prove that statement correct. Recent years upon this mystical island have been so memorable, eventful, and oftentimes tragic, contemporary occurrences have come to dwell strongly in the minds of most Derethians, while events long past have faded from memory. However, countless events transpired long before the release of the Hopeslayer, events that newcomers to Dereth or those who let history pass them by have little knowledge of. That’s unfortunate, for those individuals are ignorant of a brief time in our history when, unimpeded by civil war and unaided by powers and artifacts of ancient origin, we Isparians controlled fought to establish a home on this hostile world. It was a time when we mere mortals carved out legends that would stand alongside those of the immortal Empyrean. It was a time of individuals the like of Lilitha the Hunter.
Lilitha was Dereth’s first great explorer, easily a match for the formidable Alatar Locke in both talent and eccentricity. She was said to venture out into the wilds for weeks at a time in order to hunt and track the unique beasts that populate our island, returning to what passed for civilized lands in those early days only to replenish her supplies. Before Locke mapped the expanses of the Direlands, Lilitha was the first to brave the dangers there. Before Candeth Martine opened the way to Marae Lassel, Lilitha somehow found herself upon that Yalaini nature preserve, and she made her way along the length and breadth of the island, hunting game that no other Isparian would see for at least a decade. It was there, upon that still-mysterious isle, that Lilitha’s journeys would at last end.
One night, as she lay sleeping on some unknown stretch of Marae’s lands, Lilitha was attacked by a band of Hea trackers. Unprepared, she was quickly overcome and captured, leaving her bow to become the trophy of the hunter Temenua. The Hea Tumeroks were at that time and still remain in league with the Virindi, and they took their new prize to their alien masters. In the depths of one of their strongholds, they subjected Lilitha to innumerable torments and experimentations, all in the hopes of understanding how beings made of flesh and blood function, knowledge they would one day use to alter another of their subjects: Martine.
To this day Lilitha remains a prisoner of the Virindi, held in some warped aspect of portalspace itself alongside her fellow captives, Aun Tanua and a pair of Yalain. Those who brave the perils of that twisted place would likely not recognize the fabled hunter who journeyed across the wilds of early Dereth, free from all bonds but the desire to seek the next great hunt. Perhaps one day, someone will free her and the other prisoners there of their captivity, and it would only be right to do so. Such imprisonment is an unspeakable fate for any innocent person, let alone a hunter the stature of Lilitha, a woman who embodies the early days of our life here on Dereth, when all the world was a great wilderness, just waiting for us to explore it.