As the victors of the Elvic Wars, the Woodelven forced the Imperial Council to outlaw fraternisation between humans and the dark elves. In spite of this, a dangerous liaison between the dark elves and the North Essenee continued. In this secret meeting place, both sides of the mixed bloodlines reunited to celebrate their forbidden ancestry. The mixed lineages included the North Essenee clans of Vaulkinär and Hamiryeh and the Eagle and Wolf Beast cabals of the Ell Avon.
Woden the Wise, Valakân’s father and patriarch of the Vaulkinärs, stood up to speak next.
“It is for three generations we have been meeting in Atlans Deep to celebrate this great fellowship. It is our forbidden bond that continues to strengthen our tied family lineages. However!” he said, raising a finger in the air to mark his point. “We must remember that our very existence has been the root cause of much bad blood. It has pitted elf kind against mankind and elven race against elven race. Interracial fraternisation with elf kind is now outlawed. The Imperial Council has banned any interference in the cleansing process enacted by the Woodelven.”
“Yes, that is correct, Woden the Wise,” said Aghan Astaram. “In defence of the Imperial Council, they saw such terms as a small price for peace. They couldn’t know the extent of the Yenneti threat.”
“Indeed, Aghan, but my point is a simple one,” the patriarch of the Vaulkinärs continued. “The Woodelven want all mixed bloodlines eradicated. In all this merriment, we need to remember that our continued existence is abhorrent to them. The more our lineages extend into Ell Avon and Essenee society, the greater the risk of a return to war. This victory over the Yenneti, I fear, serves to incite renewed effort against us.”
“Honoured, great father,” Skyleader Wistow offered with a smile. “This is a time of celebration, is it not?”
As a man of few words, when the Skyleader spoke he usually chose them wisely. Wistow stood proudly alongside his ajalou skymen in full battledress. As was Dark Elf tradition, battledress would not be removed until the proclamations of the leaders had been made. His helmet was sculpted in the likeness of the head of an ajalou and festooned with the plumage of the male of the species. From the apex of Wistow’s helmet, the crest feathers fanned out in their striking orange, yellow and blue colours. Radiating from his eye sockets to the bridge of his cheekbones was a pattern of very fine yellow and blue feathers that mimicked the male ajalou likeness. Typical of the men in the Eagle Cabal; he also sported the body tattoo of a spread-winged ajalou on his back. Wistow’s blue leathers obscured his back tattoo, but plain to see were the eagle talon tattoos extending down his forearms.
Standing together in their colourful ajalou battle dress, the Skyleader and his skymen looked impressively fearsome and also expectant.
“Yes, of course, my spirited one. I have said my short piece,” Woden acknowledged, and with renewed enthusiasm changed the subject. “I believe we have many heroes to toast. I invite King Nefren to sing the praises of the first hero’s toast?”