“Praise be to the flower. Praise be to King Himmel. Praise be to the Voidflower. May our every wish be granted with your power, O’ Voidflower, O’ Voidflower, O’ Voidflower. Grant us thine wisdom, and we giveth to you our everlasting devotion...”-Reciting of the Void's Prayer
A Voidflower is a rare type of rose that can only be found within the walls of the Wynsveil rose garden. The Voidflower is easily distinguishable by its flaming leaves, glowing thorns, jet black petals, and an eye with 3 irises situated in the middle of the bud. The flower is considered to be the single most important thing in all of Wynsveil due to its many uses in medicine, alchemy, and The Church of Himmelhart. King Himmel The Gracious, ruler of Wynsveil, keeps a Voidflower on his person at all times to signify his love for the flower. Viewing a Voidflower’s eye brings peace and joy to the beholder. Because Voidflowers are an important part of everyday life in Wynsveil, people are required to peer into the eye at least once every week.
- It is very important to not waste a single part of a Voidflower. Throughout many generations, people have discovered and invented ways of utilizing all aspects of the flower.
- The roots of a Voidflower can be used as a cooking ingredient, most commonly a noodle substitute. If added to a broth made from Lake Myne’s water, the product is called a Voidsoup. Voidsoup is a delicacy of Wynsveil, drunk once every year, or twice in years during a famine. The soup’s effect varies from person to person, however, the common outcome of drinking it is a stronger resolve, increased stamina, and a calmer mood.
- Voidflower stems are an important ingredient in The Church of Himmelhart’s alchemist division. They are used to create the Crown of Himmel and many other important religious artifacts in Wynsveil. The stem can be eaten, acting as a mild amnestic. The consumer may forget up to 12 hours of information, depending on their mental fortitude, amount of stem digested, age, and gender. Boys will tend to forget more than girls, however, testing is extremely limited due to the rarity of the Voidflower.
- The extreme heat the thorns give off allows for easier location of Voidflowers within the Wynsveil rose garden. However, this heat also presents many difficulties for harvesting these plants. One must wear thick gloves and use tools to harvest the Voidflower, touching the thorns will cause extreme pain and large burns on the applied area. The thorns can be safely removed from the stem to be used in many religious practices. The most popular use is adding a thorn to the edge of a knife to sear meats and cut at the same time. Other uses include heating baths, light fixtures, and in special cases, jewelry.
- Leaves of a Voidflower are primarily used to create Voidtea. The leaves of a Voidflower give off an ashy smell, but the taste is similar to a Pomegranate. This tea is offered to those who wish to test their loyalty to The Church of Himmelhart, as well as being King Himmel’s favorite drink.
- The inky black petals of a Voidflower seem to draw the eye of those who view it. Viewing the petals of a Voidflower gives the beholder a sense of peace and happiness. Viewers often relate this sensation to that of a friend watching over you from the heavens. When plucked from a Voidflower, there is a short time before they shrivel and return to dust. The Church of Himmelhart will use these petals to decorate the roads of Wynsveil during important holidays.
- A Voidflower’s 3-irised eye is the most important part of the flower. People who view the eye are drawn to its beauty, and report that a voice can be heard emanating from the bud of the rose. People report feeling happier and more willing to participate in society when viewing the eye. The Church of Himmelhart requires all of its citizens to peer into a Voidflower’s eye at least once every week to remind them of the flower’s beauty, and to be better, more responsible community members.
Growth Rate and StagesTypical rose growth rate and stages.
Dietary Needs and HabitsBecause the Voidflower is a magical plant, it sustains itself by absorbing Myathron particles in the atmosphere. Due to its relatively small size, the amount of Myathrons it can absorb at one time is negligible. However, Voidflowers can also live without Myathron intake due to their very short lifespan.
Biological CycleVoidflowers do not live for a long time, and because of this, they can grow during any season.
The Truth by Nathaniel Morris
TW: brutality, sacrifice, torture
November 9, 1968
I never would have thought I could see this book with my own two eyes in all my life. The Encyclopedia of Wynsveil finally arrived today, and I could not be happier! Sarrah was ecstatic, for within these pages held the secrets to complex magic entirely new to her, which as you know, is very rare for someone of her skill. After paying the merchant a mere 900 gold coins, the book was mine. I immediately took it to the manor, placed it in my study, and then rushed to the door to greet Christoph, who would join us for dinner later that evening.
Christoph asked me for Sarah’s hand in marriage today over tea, which didn't surprise me. I contemplated turning him down again, however this time I felt he was ready. He has certainly improved his sword skills and his job as a herald would allow my sweet Sarrah to continue to live her lavish lifestyle.
We talked about the wedding arrangements until dinner. Sarrah and Christoph weren’t the best fit in my mind, but if she was happy, I was happy. After dinner was finished, Christoph took his leave, and Sarrah and I retreated to my study, where we admired each and every page until we found ourselves looking at a peculiar plant that seemed to glare at us from the page. Reading the title, we found it to be called a Voidflower. The information given was small and gave off a feeling that whoever wrote it was hiding something sinister. I asked Sarrah if she could use her Deception Detection magic on the page to prove my thoughts, fearing that the Encyclopedia was a forgery. Her magic concluded that the Voidflower article was in fact deceiving us in some manner, which only furthered my suspicions about this book. I had Sarrah check a few other entries within the encyclopedia, but all the other pages we checked came back as reading true. This puzzled me, I must have time to think about what this means.
November 10, 1968
We must figure this mystery out. Sarrah and I both agreed that the only way to solve this puzzle is to make the journey to Wynsveil to find a Voidflower. Christoph was perfectly willing to accompany us, however, I feared his company may not be enough. I traveled down the hill to the Adventure corps and hired 8 brave adventurers, paying 3 gold per person. We shall leave at dawn tomorrow and hopefully arrive at the Nyian forest by the evening. I have ordered Sir William to bring us his finest wagon, as well as 3 week’s rations, however, I doubt we will use even half of it. Sarrah and Christoph are more excited than I about this trip, but something tells me they are hiding something from me…
The adventurer’s names are; Amber, Damian, Holly, Keith, Morgan, Peter, Simon, and Virgil. They’re fine young people, strong, yet kind. I hope they enjoy this adventure as much as we do. The book shall accompany me on this journey, to stave off boredom, as well as inform us of the route to the legendary Wynsveil.
November 12, 1968
As the others in our group gather around a cozy fire on the other side of the Nyian forest, I have retired into my tent to recount what has happened these past 2 days.
The 8 adventurers accompanying us were of great help throughout the journey so far, fending off the Wolven, and carrying our spare rations and gear. They seem happy, and I know why. The gold they're getting will be enough for them to live comfortably for a long while.
Keith and Morgan made lunch by the Jyne river, and we were on our way to the Nyian forest when a peculiar beast came charging from the north. A glance through the encyclopedia found the answer. A Qwentzyl is what it’s called. The adventurers dispatched the beast rather quickly, I presume the 9 legs are fairly weak against blades. After that encounter, we quickly arrived at the edge of the forest.
Amber and Holly pitched our tents, while Keith quickly made dinner. We spent hours of that night talking until Christoph made an announcement that I will never forget. “Sarrah is pregnant!” Lots of cheering ensued and drinks were shared, even I was partaking in the festivities. Morgan, as we found out, was a skilled singer. The night was made extra cheery with his beautiful singing. We partied late into the night and into the morning, before packing up our site and heading through the perilous woods. We were making fantastic time, and when we stopped for lunch, we were more than halfway through the forest. After another of Keith's delicious meals, we broke through the other side of the forest with a few hours to spare.
Sarrah has improved her magic over the years, by age 9 she was able to best nearly the entire kingdom in magical combat. It’s a miracle she wasn’t taken from me in those years, the Corporation of Magical Affairs would've loved to experiment and test her magical powers. Looking at her laughing with her fiance filled me with the joy only a father could give, and talking to these 8 fine adventurers shined a new light on the Adventure Corps. Perhaps I judged them too harshly in the past…
In our spare time, we practiced techniques with swords and spells. When evening came, Keith and Simon made a delightful supper, Virgil pitched our tents, and we gathered around the cozy fire and told stories of places we’ve been and people we have seen. Tomorrow we shall travel around Myne lake and reach the gates of Wynsveil by noon.
November 13, 1968
I normally write my journals at the end of the day, but I fear after exploring the massive and beautiful garden, I’ll be too tired to pick up my pen. Standing in front of the massive, ancient gate of the Wynsveil rose garden is something truly to behold. I spot an absolutely massive structure that we shall use as a meeting spot off in the distance. Our goal is to find a Voidflower and bring it back to the group for study and analysis. As I write this, our group is heading into the garden. I shall report my findings when I return
November 14, 1968
Dead. They're all dead. Amber and Damian and Holly and Kieth and Morgan and Peter and Simon and Virgil. Gone. Christoph is missing. Sarrah is, no, was, missing. I still wish she was missing. God, why us? Sarrah, sweet, sweet, Sarrah. The baby…
We shouldn’t have gone here. This wretched book led us here.
She was taken. The robed people… Cult of Himmelhart? No, … “Church” of Himmelhart. I hid from them. Not much I could do. Outnumbered. Chased. Still hiding. I count hundreds of robes. All black and grey.
Hidden faces. Chanting. All of them. Dragged Sarrah and the adventurers to the building.
The robed people made a Voidsoup for Amber. She withered and turned to ash before our very eyes.
Himmel’s Crowns were placed on Damian and Holly’s heads. Too much screaming. Their faces melting and joining at the floor, skin falling from their bodies until only their bare skeleton remained.
Kieth and Morgan and Peter were given Voidflower tea. They vomited their still-beating hearts for the robed people to accept.
Simon and Virgil were the unluckiest of them all. They peered into the eye. It started with their fingers. One by one, they were bitten off like carrots. Then the arms were torn from their bodies, then their toes, then their legs, then their ears and eyes. Finally, their head turned around and their necks snapped.
Sarrah. My sweet daughter. My knowledge-hungry mind was what caused her death, not the robed people’s need for her magical blood. The Voidflower can only be created with the blood of a talented magician.
Tied her feet together. Above the boiling pot. Neck and wrists slashed. Blood trickled down. I vomited. I cried. There’s nothing I can do. I'm a coward.
The glowing knife. The one from the encyclopedia. Brought to her neck… I'm a coward. I looked away. I heard the gurgling. The baby is gone. Wrists were slashed. Gurgling. I vomited. Blood flows into the pot. Why did we come here? The Voidflower is evil.
The encyclopedia lied to all of us. Nothing in the article is true.
Christoph is at the building. I see him. He is blindfolded. I see the glowing thorns of a Voidflower being brought to his cheek. The two collide. I’m far away yet I still hear his screams of pain. This is too much to bear.
Again. Again. Again is the thorn pressed into his cheek, then temple, then eyes. I know they are using him to lure me out, I know I mustn't go. I remain in the trees, trying to find the way out.
There is no escape from this garden. Miles and miles of roses I see before me. My poor Sarrah. Why did I take her with me? Why did they kill her so? Christoph’s screams echo around me, I must save him.
I've been spotted. There is no escape for me. I must destroy this encyclopedia. The picture of the Voidflower sickens me. I know what I must do. My bloodied hand adds the final touches to the picture. There must be an escape from this neverending nightmare. I’ll see Sarrah and the others soon.