- Irish Soldier 1: Oh, dear Lord, let me die.
Eivor continued and saw another soldier vomiting over the bridge, and as she passed the gateway, overheard a third man.
- Irish Soldier 2: Not again...
- Irish Soldier 3: Mo lén. (Oh no.) I've shat me-self!
Just inside the gate stood a worried Bárid.
- Bárid: Eivor! Please, we need your councel.
Eivor spoke with him.
- Bárid: Come, the army has been poisoned.
- Eivor: Curse of Loki.
Flann had his two of his soldiers hold the cup bearer, Moenach, with a sword at his neck.
- Flann: Speak, whoreson! Who?
Bárid walked into the accusation.
- Moenach: That's the man, my king!
- Flann: You accuse Bárid?
- Moenach: It's him what gave me the poison. Seven silver he paid!
Flann glared at Bárid.
- Flann: The King of Dublin.
- Bárid: My king. I...I—
- Flann: Only the Irish were poisoned. Your Danes are hale and hearty.
- Ciara: My lord—
- Bárid: Flattering words and servile gifts, all to mask treachery.
- Ciara: My lord, you know this cannot be true. Danes don't use poison and Bárid is no man of guile.
- Moenach: My king, it was him! He says to me, "Poison the feckin' Irish," he says. He threatened me life!
- Flann: Silence!
The soldier with the sword held the weapon in front of Moenach's face.
- Bárid: Take this man away!
- Moenach: No ... No! I done nothin'.
Moenach was taken away.
- Flann: Ciara, I chose to place you at my right hand because you see clear. Still, I cannot trust this Dublin Dane.
- Bárid: My king, I have faithfully served you!
- Eivor: Trust him better, lord.
- Flann: I said silence! Danes often fight for either side.
Flann cleared his head and sighed.
- Flann: Bárid, stay within these castle walls while I consider your position. I must first find care for my soldiers.
- Ciara: You well know, my king, I have a friend who can heal most any malady.
- Flann: One of your scattered coven of forest-dwelling pagans?
- Ciara: Let me speak with her. She'll find a cure.
- Flann: Ara (Ah), go. Take a soldier with you for protection.
Flann left to tend his soldiers as Ciara looked to Eivor.
- Ciara: I choose you as my soldier. Meet me at the stables near the front gate.
Ciara left to wait for Eivor.
- Eivor: Bárid, you should be grateful your head is still upon your shoulders.
- Bárid: I am. By the gods, I am.
Eivor left and went to speak with Ciara at the stables.
- Ciara: Come, let us find my friend, Deirdre.
- Eivor: Who is this healer?
- Ciara: She's a druid, wise despite her youth. Are you ready?
(Accept – "Yes, let us go.")
- Eivor: I am curious to meet her.
Eivor and Ciara left as Eivor followed Ciara's lead.
- Eivor: Poor Bárid. I'm disappointed that Flann even considered the accusation true.
- Ciara: The poisoning had two goals. Disable our army and put the blame on Bárid.
- Eivor: But who's behind it?
- Ciara: The soldiers cough blood. It must be the poison used by a druid cult, The Children of Danu.
- Eivor: Who are they?
- Ciara: When the Christians came with sword and fire, some few druids banded together. Eventually they vowed to destroy the Christians. They turned to mayhem and murder. Many disguise themselves and live among the villagers.
- Eivor: What of Deirdre and druids like her?
- Ciara: True druids oppose the Danu. But they are scattered and disorganized. That is why I am so determined to help Flann to the throne as High King of Ireland. He will stamp out the Children of Danu, leaving true druids to carry on.
- Eivor: Tell me more about your friend.
- Ciara: Deirdre is a druid I have known for years. We learned together.
- Eivor: You were once a druid?
- Ciara: I was. There are many pagans and druids isolated in forests all around Ireland.
Eivor and Ciara arrived at a bridge.
- Ciara: This way, across the river.
- Eivor: This land is unsettling.
- Ciara: I am unsure of the way. Follow the stone path as best as you can.
Eivor deciphered the path by following the runic stones. Along the way, Eivor and Ciara came under attack by a pack of wolves.
- Eivor: Ciara!
- Ciara: Wolves!
Eivor and Ciara defeated the wolves together.
- Ciara: You see what's Connacht's like. A wild place. It's where I'm from.
Eivor and Ciara continued on and saw Deirdre's hut in Asfinn.
- Ciara: Deirdre's hut. Eivor, she is a druid, so a bit...
- Eivor: Eccentric?
- Ciara: Yes. That's it. Eccentric.
Hoping to gain some insight into the druid's ways before meeting her, Eivor took the chance to explore the grounds and climbed up a waterfall that flowed near the hut, where she found a cave at the top with a small idol inside and a note beside it.
- The Shards of Amber
The amber carried by members of the Children of Danu is said to come from the ancient oak, Eó Mugna.
This tree, an offshoot of the primordial Tree of Knowledge, bore three fruits. Apples, acorns, hazelnuts.
Its wood could not be cut nor burned. Its roots could strangle a sleeping man.
Each Children of Danu carries a small bit of the amber from this tree. The amber quickens with light at the touch of its owner's blood.
Eivor descended the waterfall and rejoined Ciara below. Together, they entered the hut as Deirdre was making a mixture.
- Deirdre: Ciara! Are you ready at last to return to the joys of the forest?
Deirdre looked at Eivor sternly.
- Ciara: Deirdre, this is my friend, Eivor. I'm sorry to say we've come for help.
- Deirdre: Fé amae (Alas), I'd hoped the auguries were mistaken. Children of Danu?
- Ciara: Yes. Flann's army is spitting blood.
- Deirdre: You know what is needed.
- Ciara: I'd hoped you'd find another way.
- Eivor: What is this about?
- Ciara: The Children of Danu make the poison, but they also hold the key to its cure.
- Deirdre: Amber made from the sap of an ancient tree sacred to them. Each Child of Danu carries a shard of this amber.
- Ciara: Once steeped in its owner's blood, the power that is held deep within the amber is set free.
- Eivor: This is a somber request. How will I find one of these dark druids?
- Ciara: A friend of ours tried to discover the identities the Danu have taken. He hoped to find one called "The Wren."
- Deirdre: Then that friend was killed. The Danu are truly dangerous.
- Ciara: You may find something in his abandoned house, up north near Port Auley trading post at the mouth of the Ballysadare.
- Eivor: I will find this Wren, steep the amber in his blood, and return once I have done.
- Ciara: I pray the spirits guide you.
Eivor left to find out the identity of The Wren. From the conversation with Deirdre and Ciara, Eivor obtained a clue, which detailed an abandoned cottage near Port Auley. Eivor traveled to the cottage, entered it, and found another clue, which was a note, on top of a bundle of sacks.
- Note Found in Port Auley
My research suggests that The Wren sometimes meets with a leader of the Children of Danu on a small island in Lough Gara.
Two nights ago, I hid among the shadows near a large ritual stone hoping to catch sight of them. A figure arrived in the darkness. Then a second figure. The Wren.
They heard my movements and I fled into the night. I know not who I saw, but am certain my life is under threat.
After reading the note, Eivor traveled to the small island in Lough Gara, which was just north of Rathcroghan. At Lough Gara, Eivor looked around the ritual stone and found a note on top of a crate near the stone.
- Note Found Near the Great Stone
During the tumult of Rathcroghan's festival, I direct you to use the trust granted you in the guise as poet to spread news of false events.
No need to make a great speech. It is better to keep to the shadows. Move among the partiers and tell them to abjure their oaths to Ireland and to engage in what mayhem they may.
You do this among the commoners whilst I work upon kings and priests. Bit by bit, week by week, we will corrupt these gulls.
– The Oak
After reading this note, Eivor was able to reveal The Wren's identity as Lady Niamh, the poet. From this note, Eivor traveled to Rathcroghan as Niamh was working her part during the settlement's festival. Arriving at the settlement, a cloaked Eivor searched and found the poet at a table with a guard besides her. Eivor assassinated Niamh and recovered two more clues involving the members known as "The Cursed" and "The Ash".
- Eivor: Ah! "The Cursed" hiding in Tuam planned the poisoning. I will tell Deirdre and Ciara and give them the amber stained in blood.
Eivor left the village and traveled to Asfinn. Eivor entered Deirdre's hut once again.
- Ciara: Eivor! I worried you'd come to harm.
- Eivor: I did not, but The Wren did.
- Deirdre: May The Wren's blood ooze into the loamy earth and feed the forest with red milk. Give me the shard for the cure.
Eivor handed the amber shard to Deirdre.
- Deirdre: The humors of the ancient tree live on in the amber, now sparked by blood. Look, it turns deep crimson. The cure will be painful. The soldiers will writhe and plead to be killed as a mercy. But in a few hours, they will be well.
- Ciara: Thank the spirits of the earth.
- Eivor: The Wren carried a note.
- Ciara: A note?
- Eivor: The poisoning and the plan to accuse Bárid was the doing of someone called The Cursed. There is a cottage in Tuam where The Cursed hides. Perhaps we can find who made the poison there.
- Ciara: It is a small hope, but hope still. It is nearby. We must go.
- Deirdre: Not yet, the cure is prepared. You must deliver it as quickly as you can.
- Eivor: I will look for this mysterious Cursed. You take the cure to Cashelore.
- Deirdre: Three or four drops on each soldier. No more.
- Ciara: Thank you, good friend. Goodbye. Eivor, I'll meet you under the tree outside Tuam heading south.
Ciara left the hut to deliver the cure.
- Deirdre: The Cursed will be your second Child of Danu, Eivor. There are others. Were you to bring me all their shards, I could mix you a potion that would give the force of the blazing sun.
- Eivor: I will fell this one, then I will think on the others and your mysterious sun.
- Deirdre: Before you go... there is a darkness rolling towards Ciara. Please watch over her.
Eivor nodded and left the hut.
Eivor found and killed The Wren. Afterwards, Eivor gave the amber shard to Deirdre, who made a cure for Flann's army.