In the fourth part of this special series of Journals, Jacinth looks back at another nearly-forgotten figure from our early days on Dereth–forgotten primarily because we didn’t even discover the town of his people until a few years ago: Vesayen Hylin.

Dereth is a place rich in history, and not all of that history has occurred within the central land. In the early days of our settlement of this island, while we concerned ourselves with remnants of the Olthoi, invasion by the Tumeroks, and other matters, major events transpired scarcely a stone’s throw away, just outside our view. From the Aun struggles against their own Olthoi Queen to the civil war of New Viamont, battles were being fought that would eventually come to resonate within all of Dereth. One such battle involved a man after whom the site of the struggle would come to be known: Vesayen Hylin.

Like Thorsten Cragstone and Elysa Strathelar, Vesayen was part of a group of refugees who sought to escape Olthoi imprisonment. Alongside Zenzaburou Henzu and Vanten the Quick, he led several of his former slaves through the insects’ tunnels, taking an advantage of an earthquake to provide cover for their flight. For countless days, or even weeks, they trekked through the endless dark. Eventually, they found their way to the surface, but even the warm touch of the sun, something they had all but forgotten in their days of captivity, was of little comfort. The endless horde of Olthoi was ever on their heels, eager to reclaim what they had lost.

The Olthoi pursued the escapees through a dense forest, and many, including children, were overtaken by the insect mass. However, hope finally manifested itself when the group came upon a portal. Though its destination was unknown, nearly any fate was better than to await the spines and pincers pursuing them, so as their fellows made their way through the shimmering gate one by one, Vesayen and Zenzaburou stayed behind to hold off the oncoming Olthoi. In the moments before the portal flickered and faded from existence, Zenzaburou at last made his way through, battle-scarred and barely alive. Vesayen, unfortunately, was not as fortunate; he had apparently given his life in order to give his comrades a chance to escape.

Zenzaburou and the survivors of the escape party, numbering about twenty in all, found themselves on a chain of strange, uncharted islands. Believing themselves to be the only humans who had managed to escape the Olthoi, they would soon found the town of Kryst, the lone outpost, they believed, of Isparian civilization on this world. Of course, they would come to discover that other Isparians had also escaped their Olthoi captors. Soon, the Vesayen Islands, named in honor of their patron’s sacrifice, would be the stage upon which such grand dramas as the revival of the factions of Dericost Undead, and the release of Bael’Zharon would come to play. In that way, the legacy of Vesayen Hylin has come to hold significance to not only his fellows in the “lost” town of Kryst, but among all Isparians who call Dereth home.

For more on Vesayen and the history surrounding his islands, check out the History of Kryst and History of the Vesayen Isles texts.

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