The Elder Tree City of Normandor was the second capital of the Holy Princedom of Malinor in Asulon. It was located at the southernmost island at the tip of the Emerald Peninsula.
Normandor was one of the largest and most populated cities in Asulon. Jobs, businesses and housing were abundant in the city and surrounding area. All races were welcome to visit and live in Normandor. Citizenship records were kept so that the Elven Council was able to keep track of who lived and worked in the city.
This is the Story of how the great Elder Tree of Normandor formed. For generations a powerful dynasty of Elves held a seed. However this was no ordinary seed, this was an Elder Seed. It is said that of all the great trees in Aegis only the Elder Seeds could produce the finest and most magical entities. These seeds were tainted by both light and dark magic and would yearn to reside in the heavens but also, in the Void.
The last know holder of this seed was Bravepaw, now Chief of Normandor, founder of the Elder Tree. Having little understanding of the seeds power, the Gods truly had guided him to unleashing its full potential. Over the long Elvish years and with the considerable gaps between generations, the purpose for the seed had been somewhat lost. All that survived was the tradition to pass the seed on to the new eldest son with the simple words “Light conquers evil, consumes darkness, embraces life and takes root even in the most darkened of places.” Bravepaw had indeed always been baffled by these words, but wore the seed around his neck, instilling in him the protection and guidance of his ancestors.
On his father’s death bed Bravepaw was told, “when The Void surrounds you, look to our greatest source of light,” with those words, passing him into the beyond. The Elder Seed became incredibly sentimental to Bravepaw, he clutched it in remembrance of his father and his fathers before him; it guided him and comforted him, leading him to the beyond.
Seasons passed, Bravepaw grew mature and wise. He became very close to his elvish companion Genriel, and formed a strong pact with two Elves named Orlanden and Travathian. They eventually came to settle South of Laurelin, in a place named Valenwood. For a while Bravepaw found peace there, but the Seed would always distract him and push him, he never felt truly at home. Following a peace treaty struck between the Elves and the Orcs the four companions were given the opportunity to run an Elvish outpost and have much more autonomy. Bravepaw accepted this position in order to expand the frontier of the Elvish power. He always remained suspicious and vigilant of the new Orchish landlords. A price of 50,000 minas was put on this land, Bravepaw set about to gather the necessary funds, the Orcs giving him one week to do so. However, the Orcs in their treachery, arrived earlier than this to collect it. They wanted a reason to ransack the place and remove the Elvish presence. On arrival Bravepaw had managed to raise the necessary amount and offered it willingly. The Orcs, defeated in their dim-witted plan, turned it down and retreated, attempting to salvage what they would call Orcish pride. Bravepaw decided to take a hunting party to gather food for the outpost. He left two younger elves to pay the Orcs on their return. Supplies were running low and this hunt would be critical to their survival. Fate it would seem, has a wicked sense of irony.
The Orcs were watching; they watched Bravepaw lead his people into the wilds to hunt. They watched the two Elves that were left behind and they watched the sun dip behind the mountains, until it was day no more. That night the Orcs charged the outpost, slaughtering the two Elves, taking the money and setting the place on fire. The outpost had no hope and was scorched from the very surface of Aegis. When Bravepaw returned with his companions they were met by smouldering ruins, the air thick with smoke, the ground covered in ash. The Orcs there told Bravepaw this was the action taken for not paying. Bravepaw used his elvish wisdom to try and reason with them, he had given the opportunity of payment and even left the money. “Cunsidda it compens..compen..compensation” the Orc growled; looking very pleased with himself for mustering the necessary vocabulary.
Bravepaw felt a rage building inside him; he wanted to strike these foul Orcs down now where they stood. He reached for his bow, but something stopped him. He felt the seed beating, beating as if it were his own heart. It calmed him, it filled him with warmth, a vision flew into his head, the void, an island, a distant land, and unlike anywhere he had seen in Aegis. Was this to be his home, was his father calling to him or was the magic of the seed driving him insane? He pondered on this for a moment. An Orc seeing that his hand had reached for the bow lunged forward, piercing his dagger into Bravepaw’s chest. His companions gasped, reaching for their swords, fearing the worst. However, Bravepaw had not been harmed. The dagger struck the seed and the seed had erupted! The Orcish metal dissolved into nothing, corruption spread through the body of the Orc, he squirmed and screamed as he turned into ash, the ash was swept into the wind. The Elder Seed had awoken! The rest of the Orcs seeing the raw power of whatever this was rushed away, leaving Bravepaw and his companions in awe of the events that had just transpired. The Elder Seed was glowing now, it had been given its sacrifice, the glow of the Seed was pulling them, leading them, guiding them. The group would follow its light, to the very end of Aegis if they needed to. They made a pact that day, never to rest, until they had found the home the Seed was leading them to. The group played their part in the evil times to come, the rise of the Undead and the Torment of Iblees. But this, like many things, is a different story.
The Companions boarded an Elven ship on the shores of the Verge. The Seed had brought them here, evil had driven them here. Throughout all they had suffered the Seed still shone bright. It was drawing them across the perilous ocean; it was calling them to Asulon. On reaching the shores of this new land the Seed seemed to glow brighter than ever. They knew, after all these years, they were close. Bravepaw and his companions were loyal to the Elves. They stayed with them, to protect their people, until the Elves stopped in what later became Malinor and where the Elvish City of Elandriel was founded. For a while the Seed dimmed, they stood at the foot of the tree the Elves of Elandriel named the Mother tree, Bravepaw buried the Seed here, not understanding what he should do. They remained there for many Elven weeks, a busy bustling city sprung up around them as the Elves settled into their new home and an Elven Prince oversaw the creation of a new Elven safe heaven. Bravepaw never left the site where he planted the Seed at the foot of the Mother tree. Until one fateful night he awoke.
A blinding light had erupted from where he planted the Seed. The light sent sparks far to the South and he heard a distant explosion. Bravepaw ripped the Seed from the earth. To his amazement it had sprouted! (The mages of Normandor believe this to be simple in explanation; the Seed had simply forgotten how to be a tree! The Mother tree reminded it of this. However, this will be explained in another Chronicle.) Bravepaw woke his Companions and they ran in the direction of the sparks. The Elder Seed glowing brighter than ever before, emitting a single melodic tone the closer they got to the site the sparks had landed.
They came to the sea; across it they saw a shoreline, the top smouldering, glistening in the darkness, surely the sight of the explosion. They swam across the shore, they were close now, and they knew it. They came to the top of the smouldering mass and stared down into the abyss. There a temple lay, surrounded by the darkness of the Void. (The mages of Normandor believe this to have been a sight of Mori ritual and sacrifice to the Void.) Darkness filled their hearts, evil filled their minds, they all dropped to the floor, and the void was consuming their very souls. As Bravepaw’s mind became dark, his vision blurred and his warmth removed, he clutched the Seed tight. In his head he heard the saying his family had always kept true “Light conquers evil, consumes darkness, embraces life and takes root even in the most darkened of places.” Bravepaws mind cleared, he saw….the impossible…the ghost of his father…and his dying words “when The Void surrounds you look to our greatest source of light.” Bravepaws mind cleared, only for an instant, he knew what he must do. He mustered the last of his strength and cast the Elder Seed into the depths of the Void. Darkness filled him. Bravepaw and his companions were but lifeless corpses on the fringes of this foul temple and her Void.
As they lay there, something never seen before happened. Shoots, roots, branches, leaves and vines sprouted from the all-consuming darkness of the Void. Several of the Vines carried Bravepaw and his companions upwards, beneath them a tree like no other was growing. The Elder tree had been born in Asulon! If you remember “these seeds were tainted by both light and dark magic and would yearn to be in the heavens but also, in the Void.” It had found its perfect home; its roots sprawled into and filled the Void, while its branches and trunk reached out for the heavens, beyond the clouds. This truly was the perfect site for the Elder Seed, and this is how the first and indeed only Elder tree came to Asulon.
Bravepaw and his Companions awoke, gasping for air. They were astonished; they had awoken to find themselves on top of the world. Beneath them the Elder tree creaked in the Asulonian winds and the leaves roared. It is not known how long the tree took to sprout, but Bravepaw and his companions were sustained by its light and had been released from the clutches of the Void. They began to climb down its branches and used her vines as ladders. When they reached the foot of the tree, they looked at each other… they had been given their home. Travathian looked to his companions… “Normandor…above sacred land.”
The Elder Tree was visible from much of Malinor. Many journeyed to its shores, drawn by its light. Bravepaw, Genriel, Orlanden and Travathian appointed themselves as Chiefs and Chiefess of all of Normandor, founders, protectors and rulers. They created the first High Council of Normandor to oversee its development. High Magister Kyrenn, High Commander Ithil and High Lord Thrase now sit on the council and oversee many different aspects of its development. They work with the Chiefs to ensure harmony and prosperity across all of Normandor and the Elder Tree. The inside of the Elder tree and indeed the very top became space for many homes and buildings and is home to some of the finest Elven architecture in the lands.
On one fateful day The High Prince of the Elven lands of Malinor decided to journey to Normandor. He had heard many tales of its beauty and tranquility. He had been busy securing the future of Malinor and it was not until now that he had found the time to observe the Elder Tree in all her glory. On arriving at the bridge and meeting Bravepaw he could not believe his eyes. This truly was a place of elven might and power. Its beauty and nature overwhelmed him. He consulted the Elven High Council and talked to the Princes of Malinor. In his wisdom he decreed that the Elder Tree City of Normandor was to become Capital of all of Malinor. The city of the Elves, a bastion of Elvish power, home to the High Council Chambers and would house Malinor’s central Government. The citizens of Normandor rejoiced and celebrated. Bravepaw was appointed as a Prince of Malinor and joined the other Princes and Princess in the Malinorian Government. His Loyal companions and rulers of Normandor were declared as Lords and Lady of the Elven realm. The Elder tree, reborn, revitalized and rejoiced.
Over the years as the Elder Tree has grown, its roots plunging ever deeper into the Void and its branches ever further into the heavens, the tree’s arcane aura has expanded significantly. Many mages have been drawn to this raw arcane infusion and believe tremendous power can be drawn from it. This ultimately has led to the establishment of a Normandorian college of Mages.
Normandor encouraged trade and economic growth within the city. Shops could be purchased at the base of the Elder Tree and many positions were available for Farmers, Miners, Woodcutters, and Excavators. For the gathering professions, pay was done at the end of the Elven week based on a quota of materials being filled. Commission for rare or excess of the quota was also paid. Other professions were paid at similar rates for duties performed. These included event managers, lower council, real estate, and revenue collection.