Bracken's Grove

Before Bracken was Bracken she was a squirrel. She spent her days scampering around the stunted trees of the Villen Forest in search of something to eat but food was scarce and the forest floor a dangerous place to be. Something drew her towards the high wall of the Zentos where she found a dense grove of villen oaks growing tall and lush. She ate heartily and fell asleep in the bough of an enormous tree with leaves that shielded her from the eyes of the circling hawks. As she slept soundly she dreamt of a warm sea where she swam for the first time and enjoyed the sensation of floating.
When she awoke years had passed and the forest had transformed. Giant oaks filled the forest and the air was alive with the buzzing of insects and the cawing of birds. Bracken could feel them all, every tree, every butterfly, and the roots as they passed under the ground. She was now a Small God, existing between the mortal realm and the Timeless Sea.   The Villen Forest is her realm and she protects it as only a magical squirrel can. Any that enter without her blessing is met with a hailstorm of acorns thrown so hard that they have no choice but to retreat. The lumberjacks from the nearby Imperial Fort approach with shields raised and make sure to stick to the edges but every year sees them encroach further into her realm.   Bracken doesn't live alone in the forest. She rescued a wandering family of Marsh Elves and gave them sanctuary in her tree. More of their kind have arrived over the centuries as others have left. All swear to keep Bracken's secret and to do what they can to protect the trees.


Bracken chose the villen oak because it provided her with a high vantage point from which to keep an eye on her forest. She built her nest in the crook of a branch, adding to it over the years.   When the first of the marsh elves arrived Bracken showed them how to climb the trees and helped them find discarded branches to use in making their homes. A village now sits high above the ground with branches connecting the homes and steps leading up the outside.
Tree house


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