Reader's Reference

for

Volume 3  A Distant Light



Volume 3
A Distant Light



Chapter 6

Of Madness and Butterflies


You can find more complete and detailed information within
The Reader's Companion to the Year of the Red Door.
Reader's Reference Start PageMaps
The Main Characters
FAQAbout the Reader's Companion


Alziekfria -- The ruling class and elite of the Dragonkind, mostly the wealthy or those favored by the Emperor. The name means "free from sickness." This is because this wealthy and influential class receive healing darakal extracts in greater quantity and frequency than other Dragonkind and thus enjoy much better health. As a result, most Alziekfria are very different in appearance than others of the Dragonkind.*

Attis -- Thought to be the name of the original builder of Tulith Attis, an ancient fortress near Lake Halgaeth in the Eastlands. It was later the name for the town at the base of Tulith Attis, all of which was destroyed during the Dragonkind invasion of 322 S.A.
   (See Map of County Barley)

Bailorg -- (Braig Bailorg Denuth Delcorman) One of the Elifaen, perhaps a Firstborn, but not a member of any known House. He was a mysterious figure, an acquaintance of Pellen in Duinnor during the early Second Age. He was also seen from time to time in various courts, traveling extensively throughout the realms. It is suspected that he traveled into the Dragonlands on several occasions. He was reported to have spent a great deal of time in the region of Shatuum as well, and is thought to have been present with the Dragonkind at the Battle of Tulith Attis, after which he disappeared for many years.*

Belsalza -- During the late Second Age, King of the Dragonkind. Son of Salzadur and supposedly a descendant of Kalzar the Great. Belsalza rejected the reforms of his father, rebuilt the armed might of the Dragonlands, reunited the sundered tribes, and renewed war against the north.


Beras -- The personification of the Creator; sometimes called Intent. He is worshipped by Elifaen, Men, and the Dragonkind, all having separate views of Beras. Beras is also referred to as the personification of the Creator's Intent, seeing to the balance of the world. It was Beras who commanded the earth to be formed and for life to emerge upon it. And it is Beras who is regarded as the father of the Faerekind. The Dragonkind peoples also worship Beras who is, in their religions, the force behind their liberation from the ancient dragons who enslaved them. Men worship Beras as their savior, who directed their departure from their Lost World and guided their epic passage across the boundless sea to the shores of the Found World.


Bosk -- One of the Ancient Honored Houses of Men, though not a Named House. It is descended from the earliest Men that arrived on the world's shore. The family estate is located in County Barley of the Old Eastlands Realm. Its most famous member was Bilaylin the Hammer who fought and died at Tulith Attis. His descendants were granted vast land holdings not far from Tulith Attis.


Broadweed -- (Gustan Broadweed) Schoolmaster in the town of Passdale, County Barley in the late Second Age.*

Calamandor -- Known as the Green Citadel by Men, a great city in the northern deserts of the Dragonlands, sacked and destroyed twice in the Second Age. It is one of the oldest and largest cities of the Dragonkind, with plentiful wells. It was called the Green Citadel because of the tower that once held the Glowing Stone of Bazradur which emitted a bright green light both day and night. In 790 S.A., the tower mysteriously crumbled and fell, shattering the stone so that it could not glow as before. Calamandor was also renown for its elegant and rare overhanging gardens.*   (See Map of the Dragonlands)

Celefar -- 1. One of the Firstborn Faere who stayed behind with Cupeldain and the others of the Faere who were determined to fight the Dragonkind. It was Celefar who was loved by Aperion's daughter, Laeleth, and the love of Laeleth and Celefar and their travails to be reunited are recorded in many songs, poems, and tales.
2. A buckmarl ridden by Prince Thurdun, brother of Queen Serith Ellyn of Vanara. He is named for one of the legendary Firstborn, a great warrior and the lover of Laeleth, daughter of Aperion.


Common Speech -- Also referred to as the Common Tongue. It is the common language of Men and Elifaen, and the native language for most Men of the eastern realms. It became the standard language of trade and commerce during the Second Age and as its use spread the former languages, particularly the Ancient Speech, fell into disuse. It is a heterogeneous language made up of many aspects of the Ancient Speech and various dialects, combining words and phrases brought by Men to the world with those spoken by the Elifaen.


Drago -- The ordinary class of Dragonkind. Mistakenly thought by some of the north as a separate race from the Alziekfria since the Drago and Alziekfria are different from one another in appearance and health. That is because the Drago do not regularly receive the darakal elixir and are thus more coarse in appearance and demeanor than those who rule. They suffer scales of the skin, thinning hair, and, should they suffer from the desert sickness long enough, their facial features change, most notable a thinning of the lips, thickening of the tongue, and the loss of the boney structure of the proboscis, resulting in a flat nose with narrow nostrils. As a result of the sickness, few Drago reach physical maturity, becoming increasingly weak and prone to illness, thus their mortality rate is quite high.


Dragon -- Terrible, fire-spitting creatures spawned by Morgasir during the Time before Time. Most of the dragons, along with Morgasir and a host of his followers, were destroyed by Beras in a great conflict, but some escaped into the bowels of the earth and into far places. Legend has it that the dragons sired a race of slaves to serve them, and, when the dragons were destroyed, the slaves were set free, becoming the Dragonkind.


Dragonkind -- Mortal inhabitants of the southern deserts, calling themselves Drakyr. Their legends tell that they were created as offspring of Morgasir's dragons, to serve as slaves. When Morgasir was destroyed, along with most of his creatures and followers, these people survived by eking out a living in the deserts, shunned and despised by the Faerekind in the fertile lands of the north. Eventually, they multiplied and built great cities, developed engineering and mathematics, writing, and other arts. Since the time of their first great king, Kalzar, the Dragonkind have warred with those of the northern lands.*

Duinnor -- A northwestern realm, taking its name from the ancient name for the river that flows along its northern bounds. Among the smallest of the Realms, it is nonetheless densely populated, and, as the ruling realm of the Unknown Kings, it is the most powerful of all the realms. Its chief city is Duinnor City.*   (See Map of Duinnor)

Eastlands -- Also called "Eastland," "Eastlands Realm," or "the Old Eastlands Realm." The realm that lies south of Glareth and north of Tracia, extending from the coast of the world to the Thunder Mountains in the west. After the Seven Realms were established in the Second Age, it suffered many misfortunes including droughts, floods, plagues, and invasion. Its capital was at Colleton on the coast, once an important trading port. However, in spite of the rich natural resources of the lands, the inept rule of its kings prevented the Eastlands from becoming very strong. After the demise of King Inrick II, the Eastlands became a protectorate of Glareth Realm.*   (See World Map)

Elifaen -- The Fallen Ones; those of the immortal Faerekind who refused to leave the world at the command of Aperion and who were "scathed," meaning they were stripped of their wings for their disobedience. This event is usually referred to as "the Fall," or sometimes "the First Scathing."*

Faere -- Properly speaking, the First Ones, meaning the children of the spirit of the Earth. Those beings who came to inhabit the world in the Time Before Time and who embodied the joy and harmony of creation.*

Fisenwold -- An abandoned city on the eastern edge of the Plains of Bletharn. Once a city of commerce and culture, it was located on one of the main east-west trade routes.*   (See Map of the Thunder Mountains)

Fortnight -- Two weeks, or fourteen days.


Great Stone -- A square block of marble some 120 feet in height, width, and length. It was quarried some time during the Time Before Time by Dragonkind King Kalzar. The Great Stone precipitated events that led to the Fall of the Faere.*   (See Map of the Dragonlands)

Janhaven -- A trading town in the western parts of the Eastlands Realm in County Woodland at the foothills of the Thunder Mountains, situated along a route to Duinnor and also on the north-south trade route with Tallinvale. Its fortunes were increased when Seamus Furaman located a trading company there and steadily expanded his business operations throughout the region. In the late Second Age, when Triumvirate Redvests invaded the Eastlands and nearby County Barley, many refugees from the invaded lands fled to Janhaven. Although the Redvests made several attempts to take the town, they never succeeded against the coalition of fighters operating out of Janhaven.
   (See Map of the Western Eastlands)

Kajarahn -- Also called the "Free City," located in the northwestern deserts of the Dragonlands, known in former times as Alaberbra.*   (See Map of the Dragonlands)

Kalzar -- The first King of the Dragonkind and the founder of the nation of Drakyr during the Time Before Time. He established a dynasty that lasted well into the late First Age and was later reestablished in the Second Age.*

Kingsman -- A member of the King's Army of Duinnor, the best trained and most professional force in the Duinnor military.*

Laeleth -- Legendary daughter of Aperion, who returned to the world to seek out her lover, Celefar, who was left behind after the Fall.


Lyrium -- A Firstborn Faere who, with her sister Myrium, was the founder of the House of Fairfir. In the Time of Strife, Lyrium became renown for her gift of Sight, which enabled her to foresee portents of things to come.*

Melnari -- A mysterious small group of people, neither Man, nor Elifaen, nor Dragonkind. They are very few in number, perhaps less than a dozen, and are long-lived, perhaps immortal as the Elifaen are. Some regard them as troublemakers, and others refer to them as mystics, although that term is somewhat inaccurate. However, in addition to their keen intellects, they do possess strange abilities and powers, similar to some of the older Elifaen.*

Northmen -- A term used by the Dragonkind to refer to Men and Elifaen.


Nowhere -- The land of the Nowhereans, a diminutive people sometimes called Pixies in a derogatory manner. It was located in the western Thunder Mountains.
   (See Map of the Thunder Mountains)

Passdale -- A town in County Barley of the Eastlands Realm on the banks of the Bentwide River. It was located on the site of a small settlement known as Dalefath which was destroyed in the Dragonkind Invasion of 322 S.A.
   (See Map of County Barley)

Redvests -- A name for the soldiers of the Triumvirate of Tracia due to their reddish surcoats, capes, and tunics.


Saheed -- A given name among Men, particularly of the Tallin and Markal lineages.


Serith Ellyn -- Firstborn Elifaen, Queen of Vanara, daughter of Parthais of the House of Fairlinden. Serith means "most high." The beginning of the Second Age is marked at the start of her reign. She and her brother Thurdun were exiled by King Parthais, and they were later the targets of his agents whose orders were to hunt them down and kill them both. Parthais was no less cruel to his own people who pleaded for deliverance from his tyranny. Serith Ellyn secretly raised an army and managed to position it well within Vanara without being detected. In a bold and swift night attack, she led her army into Linlally and stormed the White Palace where she slew her father.*

Shatuum -- A forbidden land on the borders of Vanara and Duinnor along the western edge of the world ruled by Secundur.
   (See Map of Vanara and Shatuum)

Steggan -- Steggan Pradkin, the half-uncle and guardian of Sheila Pradkin.


Swyncraff -- A magical staff or rod that obeyed its master by remaining in any shape as long as its owner desired. It could be as hard as steel or as supple as rope.*

Tallin -- Surname of Men whose lineage goes back to the first Men who came ashore in the world. They eventually became the powerful Named House of Tallin, and under Lord Danig Tallin. It was also due in great part to his efforts that the people of Tallinvale and Tallin City became prosperous and secure.*

Tallinvale -- A small but fertile valley along the eastern foothills of the Thunder Mountains in southwestern Eastlands. It is situated just north of territory in dispute, claimed both by Tracia and by the Eastlands. Tallin City, the ancient home of the family that gives its name to the region, is a prosperous and thriving center of agriculture and commerce, due chiefly to the guardianship of Lord Danig Tallin. Tallin City and Tallinvale are often used interchangeably.
   (See Map of the Western Eastlands)

Thurdun -- Son of Parthais, brother of Queen Serith Ellyn of the House of Fairlinden.*

Tulith Attis -- An old abandoned fortress in County Barley, of the Eastlands. It was the site of a siege and subsequent massacre during the Great Dragonkind Invasion, and events there precipitated much discord between Men and Elifaen.*   (See Map of County Barley)

Tulith Morgair -- A small beacon tower or keep on the west side of the Thunder Mountains. It is situated at the cliff end of a shoulder of a mountain that juts westward and overlooks a ford of the River Missenflo along the old road to Fisenwold. It was built by Danthis of Duinnor in the early Second Age as a part of a line of keeps that were to guard the trade routes to Duinnor. A battle took place below it along the banks of the Missenflo when a small loose knit army of men and Elifaen tried in vain to stop the eastward march of Dragonkind during the invasion of 322 S.A.. The keep was abandoned and soon fell into disuse and ruin. By the late years of the Second Age, it was all but forgotten.
   (See Map of the Thunder Mountains)

Tyrsharat -- The capital city of Drakyr, from where the kings of the Dragonkind rule. It is the most ancient of the desert cities, built by Kalzar before the First Age. Also sometimes called the Golden City because of the gold-plated roofs and domes that reflect the sun.
   (See Map of the Dragonlands)

Vanara -- One of the Seven Realms and the most ancient of all, believed to be among the first places where the Faerekind of the world lived. It was in Vanara that the Faerekind built their first cities, before the Fall. It lies to the south of Duinnor and just north of the Dragonlands, separated by a rugged range of mountains from the deserts.*   (See Map of Vanara and Shatuum)

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*Many of these entries are abridged versions of those found within
The Reader's Companion
to the
Year of the Red Door.

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