THE INJERÍN GOURAN (AVÁTH'CAÓ)

APPEARANCE - BIOGRAPHY - IMPORTANCE

Aváth'c (1900 b.S.-1779 b.S., Styrásh Aváth'coá, "Beautiful Child") was the most promising Injerín elf of her generation. In an effort to heal the blighted lands around Tak'dinal she traveled into the depths of its ruins. When she was seen again she had become transformed into Gouran ("Devourer") and would become the bane of the North, causing a Year of Darkness, pain, and sorrow. As her incarnation as Gouran, Aváth'caó was known from 1650 till 1648 b.S., which in the elven recordings is not accounted to her regular life-time.

Gouran, Bane of the North

View picture in full size Image description. The Injerín elf Avát'caó after her transformation to Gouran, turning ioto the bane of the North. Picture drawn by Seeker.

Appearance. She is said to have stood two peds in height and was bright in eye and slender in build. A grace and beauty was about her that made other elves appear as not more then humans. The whole of a people were enraptured with all that she possessed. When she came out from the depth of Tak’dinal there was a dark beauty about her. All of the light and tenderness had been sucked out, only to be replaced by the cold perfection of a statue. Return to the top

Biography. Bright Prospects. Aváth’caó was born in 1900 b.S. Her future as one of the great elves of the Injerín was already assured by her fortunate birth. She was the daughter of Elíal’danár (lit. "The Healer’s Hand") and Quál’valannía (lit. "Bright Dreamer"). As she grew so too did her beauty, inspiring many a song and verse. Aváth’caó had seemingly inherited the great healing abilities of her mother and the insightfulness of her father. On a trip with her mother to visit kin in the Folkmore city of Parthenon she felt called to help them in their revitalization of the forest. After spending some time there she went alone to the ruins of Tak’dinal, that ancient keep of the long dead Chosen, Eckra the Cruel to try to heal that festering wound upon the land.

The Re-apperance. Aváth’caó was not seen again for some time, and then when she emerged she was changed and imbued by the long slumbering magic of the place. She would become known as Gouran (lit. "The Devourer") and would bring not only sorrow, but also death to many
Injerín along with other hapless folk. With her forces of orcs, dinali, and other things of nightmare she slaughtered the elves of the Folkmore region and chased them to the sea. With this slaughter a Year of Darkness descended upon the land.

The Battle at the Mithril Bridge. Next, Gouran moved southward and took the great Mithril Bridge from the Kurakim dwarves. Upon moving further south she met a combined army of
Injerín and Kurakim. They pushed her back with significant losses. She fortified herself at the bridge and threw back the armies of the elves and dwarves. Her mother tried to use her magic to loosen the stays which held the bridge so that Gouran and her army would fall into the rushing river below them. Gouran killed Elíal’danár before she could complete her task.

The Death of Gouran. In the end Quál’valannía devised a plan that allowed the combined forces to re-take the bridge and capture Gouran. The ill-fated battle took place. No more than one in ten men survived that battle, and in the last moments of it, Quál’valannía was forced to kill his own daughter. Upon Gouran’s death the year of darkness lifted to a bloody dawn.

Here follows the legible, translated remains of a journal entry about Aváth’coá and the Year of the Burning Night written by her father Quál’valannía

“The darkness has been lifted now for some time and does not look to return. People say that it is because Gouran is no more. Gouran she is now called, the Devourer they all named her. Fool, they name me for holding onto all that I once knew. To speak her name is to bring upon ridicule if not violence. But here in this journal will I write it. Aváth’caó, my beautiful child, no devourer were you I remember still when I first saw your mother hold you I felt such …………..

...beauty to put a rose to shame
the light in ………
to put the sun to shame
Even Ava…………a better name

And that was but one of the many songs written of my daughter’s beauty. Her beauty was nothing compared to the other gifts she possessed, as we saw while she aged. Her gifts of healing were incredible, not even her mother could do such things. Elf, bird, beast, land, it mattered naught. It could all be tended to and saved. Why this one time there was a boy by the name ……………………………… …………………………………………… …… … ………………………………………………….I could scarcely credit what I had just seen.

It was soon after that incident that she went up to go visit some distant cousins on her mother’s side up in the Folkmore region. While there they had both been asked if they would not mind helping heal some of the blighted land. Unsurprisingly Aváth’caó began to do remarkable things. Not in many generations had there been a healer of the land as she, the way……………………but no matter how well she did she was frustrated. It was not something that anyone else knew, but I could tell from the letter she sent me. She told me that it was because the land was tainted and would stay that way until the source of that taint, Tak’dinal was cleansed. Her letter told me that she meant to go there to cleanse it herself.

Upon reading that I immediately began riding towards Parthenon, alas, by the time I got there she had disappeared already. At least I could tell her mother what had become of her. We waited, and waited we ev……………………in time we gave up ay real hope of her survival and went back to our home where we consoled each other. The Injerín grieved with us for they had lost their favorite daughter. Years passed, and the people sang the songs she had inspired and my wife had come to terms with the loss, but I……………………………………………………nothing would change, no matter what I would do.
 
Out of nowh……………………………no light could be seen, no sun rose the next day, nor the day after. Fear swept the forest and I must admit I too joined in that sharing of fear. Some of the plants began to wither and die. During those long nights panicked members of the Avénnian’cál flooded in with tales of terror. With their tales also came a possible reason for that darkness. A new threat had come out of Tak’dinal, powerful and beautiful to behold it reigned death and destruction upon the Avénnian’cál people. One or two of the refugees mentioned that it appeared to be an elven woman and at the time I thought “could it be” but no I would not allow myself to think it……………

…………….girthed ourselves for battle as we had not done in many a year, but what choice did we have? Our kinfolk lay dead, their blood the only nourishment for the land they tried so hard to save. My wife came with many other healers to help those we might find and those that might get injured while fighting. I came for those of my wife’s family that were undoubtedly slain. Messengers were sent to the Kurakim to inform them of the events, but it seems that…………………………

As we marched North with the Kurakim at our sides dire news came to us, that the great Mithril Bridge and its mighty fortress had fallen to this new foe. The name Gouran was given to her by my people, for she devoured all that stood before her. We were determined to move northward and put a stop to this. Two days later we met the army of Gouran and what a sight to fill us with dread; thousands of torches were held aloft by the enemy that lay before us. Nightmares from the times of the Chosen once again walked the land, dinali, giants, and creatures of shadow were mixed among the masses of orcs.
We charged down into the fray, our swords and arrows glinting in the torch light. Every shot, every stroke was a killing blow. Yet, for every one that was slain, three more jumped in its place. Few but fierce were the dinali, they wi…………………………………

………………..finally we threw them back and forced them to retreat. The victory cry was taken up until the torches were gathered round and we saw how few of us there were left. Still we marched onward, knowing that this vile thing had to be thrown back from which it came. Gouran and her forces had retreated to the Mithril Bridge and held strong there. The works of the ancient Kurakim were too strong even for them to take down now, so we were forced to through ourselves against the battlements as the sea against the rocks, much with the same results. Nothing cou……………………………………………..

Despairing, my wife attempted to tell the land to fall away from the bridge’s supports so that it might crumble and take the enemy with them. It was then that everything in my life fell apart. For as soon as the soil began to listen to her, another force flowed out from the foe to meet that which my wife attempted. Elíal’dinál cried out in recognition of the magic which fought her. “Noooo, Aváth’caó” she screamed out. As she did this the enemy parted and a lone figure walked through them. She came ever closer to the gate we had been assaulting and stood upon the ramparts looking us over with contempt. She was my dau……………………………………………..and it was then that the ground beneath my wife and those around her gave way. She fell into the raging river and was carried out to the merciless sea.

With unstoppable rage we rose against the fortress. Never have I seen so many of my brethren filled with such ferocity. The dwarves were also inspired to great feats. After some time the gate fell and in the end we made it to the middle of the bridge when the metal we were standing on began to sway and moan…………………………………my daughter sought the death of us all. I saw her upon a high parapet and with eyes filled with tears I raised up my bow and Avá help me I fired. I killed my daughter …………… why must it be this wa…………

A howling wind came and words filled with malice rode upon it, even with her last breath she hated us. The bridge continued to shake, getting worse and worse as it wrenched itself out of the very ground. We ran for our lives to get off that long span …… …… ……… ….as we came near the edge the sun suddenly came into view, the light after so long was blinding and many fell to their knees………………………… Those of us who closed our eyes and ran forward were able to make it off of the bridge before it fell. Those still left upon it perished.

 All of the time since then is but a blur, it has no meaning for I have lost everything dear to me. Forever will I be haunted y knowing that it was I who killed my child. It was I." 
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Importance. It is not known what caused the Year of Darkness throughout the whole of the world, just that every land experienced it and was changed by it. In the southern area of Northern Sarvonia, she was responsible for the near destruction of the Folkmore elves from where the Artyrhón elves were born. The Injerín elves and Kurakim dwarves worked in conjunction as they always had, and thus a rare relationship of mutual aid was once again replenished.

Much chaos took place at this time, the downfall of the Mynian Empire, the forced migration of thousands of orcs into what is now their present homes. The Shadow Elves created and empire and saw it destroyed in the span of a year. The Kanapaan lands were torn apart and flooded. Nothing seemingly stayed as it was.

Gouran's Battle at the Mithril Bridge was also the death of the last of the great wonders of the North. Nothing can be seen now where it once stood, some even question wether or not it truly existed.

Some blame all of this on Gouran. Some blame it on other things. All that is certain is that she caused the death of hundreds, and sorrow to thousands. 
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