The Wyvernstones of Hullack were a group of menhirs at a site sacred to Eldath located in the Hullack Forest of northeastern Cormyr. Established by the Wyvern Circle in centuries past, the druidic group had abandoned the shrine in the 1100s DR and by the Year of Wild Magic, 1372 DR, the site had been taken over by the Bloodmoon Circle, a sect of Malar-worshiping lycanthropes that were part of the People of the Black Blood. Few, if any, beings alive at that time knew that the Wyvernstones were much larger than what was visible above ground and that they held up the roof of an ancient subterranean grotto, known as the Elfhold, used as a burial vault by the elves of House Amaratharr.
Above ground, each granite menhir was approximately 12 feet (3.7 meters) tall and 6 feet (1.8 meters) in diameter. The twelve of them were arranged in a circle about 60 feet (18 meters) in diameter. The north-, east-, and west-facing pairs of stones were capped by a table stone forming an arch. The table stone above the southern arch laid cracked and broken at the base of its menhirs.
A small pool of clear water about 30 feet (9.1 meters) in diameter adorned the center of the circle of standing stones. It was called the Pool of Eldath by the Wyvern Circle. No plant or animal life obscured the stone lining of the pool. It was filled from below by a tiny spring and reached 4 feet (1.2 meters) deep at its lowest point. The area between the pool and the menhirs was overhung by the surrounding trees and consisted of hard-packed dirt.
The three intact arches were two-way portals to other sites sacred to the followers of Eldath, but had very specific activation requirements. The portals only worked for good-aligned beings that carried a holy symbol of Eldath, and because each destination was an underwater location, the traveler had to assume the form of a fish just as they stepped through the arch. Experienced druids could use their wild shape ability, but other transformations were sufficient to open the portals.
The west-facing arch connected to the Duskwood Dell via the River Rimril in the Snakewood north and east of Eshpurta in Amn. The north-facing portal deposited a traveler in the lake surrounding the Elah'zad temple in the Scimitar Spires of Anauroch. The east-facing gate opened into a temple in the underwater Shalarin city of Us'daan in the Sea of Fallen Stars. The south-facing portal no longer functioned but its former destination was rumored to be near the shores of the Great Sea at the edge of southern Faerûn.
The Pool of Eldath itself was a bi-directional portal to the Elfhold 60 feet (18 meters) directly below it. The portal could only be activated by people with elven blood that stepped into the Pool with a white dove in one hand and the symbol of House Amaratharr carved on a stone in the other. When triggered, the portal opened for a few seconds and allowed other beings to pass through. The travelers arrived in the other half of the Pool of Eldath—a pool the same size and general shape, located between the bases of the same twelve menhirs that encircled the waters above.
The outer surfaces of the twelve standing stones were adorned with carvings of wyverns and were free of lichen or moss. However, the sides facing the central pool were nearly covered by a thick layer of these plants. Beneath the obscuring plant life were ancient magical runes, some of which still contained Eldathyn spells that could be cast if one knew how. These spells likely came from a book sacred to the druids, known as the Tome of the Wyvernwater Circle, that was said to include spells such as flame shield, mold touch, touchsickle, and wailing wind. As of 1372 DR, the whereabouts of this book were unknown, but some of the menhirs were imbued with the essence of an ancient druid who could be queried via a stone tell spell. There were seven of these merged entities in the circle of twelve stones.
After the Bloodmoon Circle was established in the Year of the Wyvern, 1363 DR, the dirt around the Pool of Eldath was darkened by the blood spilled during their sacrifices. The pool also ran red after these ritual killings, but always turned clear when the dawn light touched the water. The entire area within the circle of standing stones was placed under an unhallow spell by the Malarites, giving it the effect of a magic circle against good, to which they added fire resistance at each yearly renewal.
The menhirs were 15 feet (4.6 meters) in diameter at their true base and tapered gently as they rose up through the ceiling of the grotto some 30 feet (9.1 meters) above the floor. Elfhold was illuminated by a single diamond that hovered about 20 feet (6.1 meters) above the Pool and shown with a soft brilliance that bathed the area in starlight. The gemstone was a tel'kiira attuned to the Amaratharr family.
The entire Elfhold was roughly a compressed sphere over 100 feet (30 meters) in horizontal diameter with burial crypts cut into the walls all around. Each crypt was sealed with a 20‑foot-square (6.1‑meter) capstone[note 1] engraved with life-sized scenes of elven life that dated back before the founding of Cormyr. The twelve columns were inscribed in Seldruin, using Hamarfae script, with a litany of the accomplishments of those interred. All the crypts contained the remains of members of House Amaratharr except for one. The elf-friend Hullack, namesake of the surrounding forest, was a human druid that, according to the scene on his capstone and the writings on the nearby pillar, stood with elven forces against beholders, goblinoids, and evil fey.
The Wyvernstones were the center of activity and base of operations for the Bloodmoon Circle. Four times a year, on Midwinter, Greengrass, Midsummer, and the Feast of the Moon, they celebrated the High Hunt ritual by forming a circle 1 mile (1.6 kilometers) in diameter around the site and then releasing a sentient humanoid to be hunted to the death. On Highharvestide, they marched through the forest carrying the heads of anyone they caught trespassing on their territory in the previous tenday. Any meat-eating creatures that caught the scent of this grisly procession were lured to the Wyvernstones where they were allowed to feast on the remains of the interlopers, while the Malarites prevented aggression between creatures with magic and enjoyed the display of animal savagery well into the following day.
The Circle did not offer any services, but did occasionally get contacted by a merchant or a noble who typically paid a wizard to use a sending spell to deliver news of activity in or around the Hullack Forest in the hopes that the Circle would attack a rival, thus alleviating any risk of blame. The Circle was amenable to such overtures as long as it did not conflict with their plans.
As of 1372 DR, any spells cast within the circle of standing stones by a druid that worshiped either Eldath or Malar were more potent, as if the caster was much more advanced than their actual status in the druid hierarchy.
The Wyvernstones did not have any active defenses, but were protected by the members of the Bloodmoon Circle and by the priesthood of Eldath before them. The Elfhold was protected by the ghost of Hullack. Although he was a pacifist, he was a powerful hierophant in life, and his ghost retained many of those powers, including the casting of divine spells.
The Wyvernstones of Hullack were the entrance to the Elfhold, a cavern built as a tomb for the elves of House Amaratharr. The hierophant druid Hullack, a true friend of the elves, was also laid to rest with the Amaratharr family. The followers of Eldath dwindled and eventually stopped regular worship at the Wyvernstones sometime in the 12th century DR. Over two hundred years later, on the Feast of the Moon in 1363 DR, the Bloodmoon Circle was formed on the site, dedicated to Malar and claiming kinship with the People of the Black Blood.
Rumors & LegendsEdit
Cormyreans in the vicinity of the Hullack Forest told tales of the Wyvernstones, but very few knew how to find them or would even think to dare approach them. Occasionally, a hunter from Thunderstone might offer a freshly killed stag to Malar at the site, but would never consciously reveal the location to outsiders for fear of retribution from the Bloodmoon Circle.
- Talgaerth Volspaan, leader of the Bloodmoon Circle as of 1372 DR.
- Djalia Amaratharr, mate and second in command to Talgaerth.
- Grolshar Twintusk, third in command.
- ↑ The map of Elfhold shows the capstones at only 10 ft (3 m) in one dimension. This wiki's guideline is to give text descriptions precedence over images and maps.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 174. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 2.8 2.9 Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 175. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 178. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 179. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
- ↑ Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 178–179. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
- ↑ Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 180. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.
- ↑ Eric L. Boyd, Erik Mona (May 2002). Faiths and Pantheons. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 181. ISBN 0-7869-2759-3.