8 YEARS AFTER REAPPEARANCE
# 1 - 15
Shards # 1 "Clay"
Men dig in the basement of one of the Djun's towers. Winnowill nods and the cement for the hallway is poured over them. An assassin stabs her in the back. She melts his flesh. Two-Edge's voice taunts her. Djun conducts a tour for five nobles. One asks about the crystal towers built over the past year. He makes them leave. Winnowill calms him but he refuses to lie with her again. They enter the tower made of the Palace's shards. He teases her with a key to the library and access to the Scroll of Colors. If she kills him his Master Builder will call the guards. She returns to her chambers. Rayek calls her out of her body asking for help getting the Palace back. She sends him back. He and his friends must be punished. Two-Edge taunts Grohmul Djun from somewhere. He asks Winnowill if there are more like them. She takes him to his viewing tower and asks if there's somewhere he's yet to take. The Master Builder will give him the means of getting the forest's wood. The Holt. Ember and the others are out of sending range. Cutter enters Ekuar's and Rayek's cave with Mender and Venka. Rayek is done waiting. Cutter says it's time. He gathers Rayek, Ekuar, Mender, Venka, Treestump, Clearbrook, Strongbow, Zhantee, Skot, Krim, and Aroree. The Palace means something different to all of them. When the shards are found they must pull them together around them. They must get the Scroll so Winnowill can't read their moves. Machines approach, cutting down trees the whole way.
Shards # 2 "Wood"
Trees are being cut down by large machines. Venka stops Rayek from attacking them. The fire in their bellies will spread through the forest. The preservers blind the humans. Strongbow wounds some of them and they fire back. The elves dodge. A preserver, Tittersweet, is run over. Mender heals its wings. Redlance's thorn fence is crushed by the vehicles. Another Holt is lost to the humans. Ekuar takes them below. They'll tunnel beneath Citadel Mound this way. They enter an adjoining tunnel. Trolls find them and bring them before Picknose. They come for help, as they did in the beginning. He wants something in return. Humans find Ekuar's hole and are on their way. Picknose and Cutter attack. Maggoty convinces the trolls to fight back. Cutter saves Picky from death, paying the fee. Aroree brings Cutter to the others. The trolls have the humans beat. The men are chased back into Ekuar's tunnel. Explosives are set and the tunnel comes down. Ekuar forms a new tunnel. He closes it once they're all in. Drub and Flam are with them, for treasure. They tunnel for a long time and sing the whole way. Ekuar collapses.
Shards # 3 "Stone"
Ekuar's heart is tired. Rayek takes the strain from it as Mender heals him. Preservers wrap and hide him. Drub and Flam dig up into a pig pen. They're still far from the towers. Aroree and Zhantee and Rayek and Venka fly up and head for the towers. In a chamber within a chamber, in a tower within a tower is the Djun. Winnowill concentrates on the Scroll of Colors. She asks for privacy and he strikes her. Suddenly Rayek is seen in the scroll. His nearness did this. Guards are called. He becomes more powerful and blasts them on the ground. Djun wants to know what's going on but Winnowill knocks him down. She causes Rayek pain but Venka's powerful sending stops her. He blasts the tower, revealing an inner tower. A scroll falls, caught by the Djun. Venka is getting tired. Aroree flies down, grabs a scroll and goes back up. A rock from a catapult hits Rayek. Venka falls into the tower. Rayek senses she's alive. Rayek blasts the catapult and rests in a nearby tower. Aroree and Zhantee bring the scroll to Cutter. Maybe Venka can thwart Winnowill's moves. The scroll is left with Ekuar. Drub gets a pig for dinner.
Shards # 4 "Flesh"
Drub knocks the human out and they all hide in the root cellar. Cutter sends to Rayek, quickly getting information before Winnowill hears. They sneak out. The next day: Two soldiers discuss something that lives under Thorny Mountain. The townsfolk start whispering. A hooded girl enters an inn. In the cellar, Treestump cuts down some meat. The girl, Shuna, comes down to sleep and sees Holdfast. She feels their familiar presence and asks them to come out. Tyleet told her they want their crystals back (HY 15). Winnowill is guarded in her chambers. The Djun comes, angry that he was lied to. She says Aroree was once her minion. The soldiers leave. Since she came his Master Builder has been uncooperative. She shows her true form. People must think that she and the spirits are his. He leaves. Winnowill hears laughter under the floor. There, Two-Edge tends to an unconscious Venka. Rayek watches the Djun speak to the people. From now on they aren't to honor spirits or even Threksh't. He controls the dark forces. Shuna comes down and tells this to the elves. Petalwing reveals itself. Night: Winnowill comes to the kennel. The kennel-master is thrown in and torn apart. Winnowill transforms 13 hounds into the "peace hounds," loyal only to the Djun.
Shards # 5 "Hand"
A cage full of peace hounds is led through the city to the lower level barracks. The Djun comes and they are freed. A scrap of Winnowill's clothing calms them. Rayek sees them. They're set off by his presence. They climb a wall using their tentacles. Arrows are fired at Rayek. He flies to a window ledge and sends an image of the hounds to Cutter and the others. Cutter tells Shuna and she agrees to help. The innkeeper's dog discovers them. Rayek finds a tower, within a tower, within a tower. He sends to Venka and she wakes up. Two-Edge tells her not to send back or Winnowill will find them. Venka pushes away Winnowill's sending. Winnowill continues to search through the citadel. Cutter and Rayek will surrender rather than have her tortured. She sends to Rayek but he locks her from his mind. Peace hounds patrol the lower levels. They burst in on a family. The grandfather believes in spirits and is devoured. Shuna sees and swears to stop it. The elves plan to split up. Shuna says three chased her and she'll draw them away. It doesn't work, they find the elves. Cutter slashes at one through the window. They burst in the front door. The groups split up leaving Treestump and Clearbrook. The hounds break down the cellar door.
Shards # 6 "Head"
Three peace hounds attack Treestump and Clearbrook. They cut their tentacles. Clearbrook gets bit. One is wounded but jumps on Treestump. The preservers blind one and it's killed by Scratchbark and Clicktooth. The other two run. The elves climb into the attic above. It's better not to send. Soldiers find the dead hound and burn it. The two hounds head for Winnowill. Dawn: Clearbrook and Treestump must wait. Rayek is in the citadel. Many halls are unfinished. He finds a secret tunnel to a large passage with a throne. He senses the shards are near. Djun walks in with nobles. Someone spoke against his decree and will die at dawn. Two-Edge sends to Rayek, saying not to kill the Djun. He's with Venka. He ponders whether to help them. He gives Venka a tour through his many tunnels. He owns the Djun. There are views to many chambers. Outside a man is strung between water-filled stone birds. He yells 'Kill the Djun or he'll kill our spirit!' as he's torn apart. Shuna tells certain people to meet her. Two peace hounds are crazed to get to Winnowill. Djun is angry at her and Two-Edge enjoys it. If Cutter reaches the citadel he'll give him clues to get to the crystal chamber.
Shards # 7 "Heart"
Men secretly meet with Shuna in her basement. She says a spirit cured her of the rot. She tells them of her encounters and they believe her. They'll pass on her three-fingered sign to others. They hear a peace hound nearby. Shuna says goodbye to her mother and runs. She is chased into a dead-end alley. Skot and Krim jump on the hound while Shuna climbs up. Tittersweet gets Skot out of the way and Strongbow fires. They all climb into an upstairs window. Soldiers find the dead peace hound and burn it. Shuna says with their help her rebels can overthrow the Djun. The alley is clear. Shuna says she'll be back. Strongbow hears a bed rocking and finds Skot and Krim under it. Venka is with Two-Edge in a cavern under the citadel, where he builds his 'toys.' Venka runs into a tunnel, but it splits off into several more. Two-Edge finds her. She sends to Rayek, overheard by Winnowill. She kills her soldier escort. She battles more soldiers. Rayek arrives and keeps her from being killed. Two-Edge and Venka find them. Rayek won't kill her, he loves her. To Venka she's more dangerous dead. To Two-Edge she's identity itself. Shuna and her rebels subdue a group of soldiers. Shuna puts on armor and mounts a horse as two hounds attack. They battle with Skot, Krim, and Strongbow. The hounds are killed. Shuna yells that together they can bring the Djun down. The spirits are gone
Shards # 8 "Turnabout Part 1"
The Djun and his guards find Winnowill surrounded by dead soldiers. She says Rayek did it. She made Rayek unable to move. Venka collapsed and Two-Edge ran away with her. The guards don't trust her. They're sent away. Djun tries to kill Rayek but he's shielded. He wants to know everything. They enter the crystal chamber where she sets Rayek down. She'll use him to reunite the crystals, then repel the elves. Shuna rallies the people outside. Mender, Aroree, and Glam move through a sewer tunnel. Strongbow sends that his group killed three hounds. Treestump got one. Cutter is halfway to the mound. Aroree scouts a safe path. Mender's losing it. There are too many sick humans around. Aroree climbs the hill. The humans are burning buildings. They could go over the rooftops without being seen. Mender and Flam are in a nearby home. Flam smelled treasure. Two children are there. Soldiers follow Aroree in. Humans attack them. The elves go through a hole in the floor. A soldier is about to kill the children. Flam jumps up and kills him. He carries the children down. A soldier fires a bolt down and leave. Mender is hit. Aroree pulls it out and wrapstuff is put on the wound. Mender passes out. They climb out and run.
Shards # 9 "Turnabout Part 2"
The people rebel, led by Shuna. A messenger escapes to the captain. The Djun is told. Winnowill is still trying to get through to Rayek's mind. Elsewhere Aroree tells Mender to heal himself but he's ready to die. Flam's angry at him. He starts slapping him, making him mad. He finally heals himself. Two Peace Hounds attack Cutter, Zhantee, and Drub. Petalwing sprays one in the eyes but is grabbed. Cutter cuts it free. Holdfast bites down on the hound's neck and Cutter stabs it through an eye. Drub and Zhantee kill the other one. More soldiers are coming. Two-Edge is with Venka in a hallway. He helps her get to the first crystal chamber. She stops Winnowill from sending. Winnowill hits her with a black sending. The Djun is about to kill her when crystals fall from the ceiling. Two-Edge warns him. Venka can keep Winnowill in check as Djun sleeps. Rayek tells her to run, they must all be here as a group. The Djun takes Venka away to his bed chamber. Two-Edge watches. The door is locked to Two-Edge's dismay. He'll help Cutter enter the citadel. The towers will crash down. He'll have his maiden or nothing. He sends to Cutter to follow his guidance. Soldiers find them. Cutter heads them off. Two-Edge says to summon his followers to the second level, just below the Djun's highest tower. Aroree, Flam, and Mender head across the rooftops. Aroree passes the message to Strongbow, Krim, and Skot, then to Treestump and Clearbrook. Cutter's betting their lives on Two-Edge's word.
Shards # 10 "Revelation Part One"
The elves race to reunite on citadel mound's second level. Skot steals horses from soldiers. He, Strongbow and Krim head up a path towards the towers. Shuna's father rides home to his wife. He knows she lied about Shuna's comings and goings. He beats her to death. Shuna is told riots are breaking out all over. Treestump and Clearbrook ride past. Shuna believes all that's good must win. They'll plan their next move. Peace Hounds are prowling in the graveyard. They scent Aroree as she flies past. She meets Flam and Mender. A ring of water surrounds the wall. They send to Cutter for help. Krim and Skot ride past and they jump on. They arrive at the drawbridge with the others. Above is a guard armed with a crossbow. The Peace Hounds jump out at them. Petalwing, Tickletoe, and Tittersweet start spitting at them. Aroree throws her weapon at a lever, bringing the bridge down. A torch falls and it ignites. They all start running across. Treestump and Clearbrook are surrounded by Peace Hounds. Skot hugs Krim and asks for she and Pike to make it a good dance. He rides out and pulls Treestump and Clearbrook up. He fights the hounds as the other two ride to safety. He battles until he's consumed by fire, taking the hounds with him. Krim howls. Elsewhere, the Djun's men block the rebels' uphill charge. If they hand over Shuna the Djun will spare them. Shuna says no. Her father swings his sword and she blocks it. He tells her what he did to her mother. She knocks him off his horse. A soldier knocks her to the ground.
Shards # 11 "Revelation Part Two"
Winnowill is calling to Rayek. She shall have the means to reunite the shards. The answer is love, which he offers her. She pushes him away. The Djun is tired of waiting for the power of the shards. A messenger tells him Shuna has been captured. A punishment will quash the rebellion. The Peace Hounds are dead. Soldiers let the elves pass. They know the Djun lied about his conjuring powers. They climb a tower and see Two-Edge's citadel. Only the shortest tower stands out to Cutter as the "tallest." Tittersweet sees Shuna being dragged towards the citadel. She'll be publicly executed. The Djun even comes. He says only the girl will be punished. She'll be torn apart by the water-filled stone birds. Tittersweet flies down to Cutter and tells him. They decide to rescue Shuna. Cutter, Petalwing, Tittersweet, and Zhantee go. Two-Edge doesn't like it and won't be giving them any clues. The people cry for mercy but the Djun laughs. Cutter flies up inside Zhantee's shield and cuts the ropes. The people charge the soldiers. Cutter gets Shuna away. The Djun and his men attack the people. Shuna looks back as the Djun's swing unintentionally kills her father. Cutter tells her the people are brave. Men light the tower as they head down. In the basement the trolls find a hollow spot and start hammering as floors above collapse. Zhantee holds the falling ceiling as they get out. It falls on Cutter and Zhantee. Krim was halfway in the hole.
Shards # 12 "The Key"
Krim is pinned. The trolls are digging her loose. The shield dissolves and the debris pushes down. Shuna gets Cutter out. They find Zhantee. He protected them all but himself. Krim gets out. She wants to die until Mender says she's with cub. He heals her. Zhantee is dying. He asks Cutter to share Leetah just once. Cutter says he could've "treed" with them anytime. It's not the same as Recognition. Cutter shares even that. Leetah's beauty sends him to a restored Palace. He and Leetah's cub is there with Timmain. Cutter tells Shuna to die is to fly. The entrance is clear. Shuna covers Zhantee's body. Revolt is spreading to the Djun's citadel. Two-Edge laughs at him. His men are losing ground. The elves mourn. Cutter says death has its time, even for immortals. Krim tells them she has a cub. It's Pike's or Skot's or both. It doesn't matter. Zhantee sent that only with Timmain can they be strong enough. Aroree can fly and send long-range. As she flies into the rain, dodging arrows, the others howl for Zhantee and Skot. Rayek and Winnowill duel outside their bodies. Venka touches the scroll and learns that her lovemate is gone. Djun strikes her but she's shielded. She says only her kind can use the shards. She won't let him kill Rayek or Winnowill. Shards fall from the ceiling, Two-Edge warning the Djun. The elves head through the tunnel and come to three passages. Aroree rests on Shuna's home and then continues. She hopes there's as much compassion in other humans. Flowers cover Shuna's mother in the house below.
Shards # 13 "Underground"
Clearbrook suggests the middle passage. Two-Edge offers no help. Krim doesn't like it and runs back, trying the left tunnel. The others follow. They come to the "forest of blades." Drub and Flam shatter them and jam the gears until they stop. They keep moving and end up where they started. Krim runs right and a spiked wall starts to fall. Cutter gets her free and slides onto greased metal poles. They tip upwards and he falls to the spiked floor. He grabs two with his hands and holds his body up. He "walks" across them to safety but falls into a trapdoor. Soon he climbs up. Again, they come to the same place. They return to the middle passage. Soon they come out on a ledge. The tunnel continues far below. Most are lowered down on a rope. Treestump, Drub, Flam, Holdfast, and Clicktooth are left. The rope breaks with Holdfast but he bites onto it. Drub, Treestump, and Clicktooth come down. The shelf retracts and Flam falls all the way down. Mender heals him. Soon they come to a bridge made of large bones. Drub steps on it and a sand timer starts. When it runs out a blade will cut the ropes. They all run across. When the blade falls, Strongbow and Gnawbone fall. The preservers can't stop them. Shuna holds her hand out, letting Strongbow fire his rope-arrow through it. Cutter and Treestump pull him up. Strongbow thanks her. They come to Two-Edge's old workshop. Two-Edge speaks from the top of the steps. They've earned his guidance. They run up and crawl through a pipe, coming out in a kitchen. The preservers wrap the cooks and they all eat.
Shards # 14 "Reunion"
Aroree is in the ruins of the thorny mountain holt, sending to Timmain. She hopes Skywise comes, it's been too long without him. Winnowill is the embodiment of their fears and will never know the Palace's true nature. Two-Edge locked the Djun away from Winnowill and the scroll. He goes to see to the rebellion. Rayek wrestles with Winnowill. She's Two-Edge's enemy but he craves for her love. Venka sends to Cutter. He'll follow her thoughts through the citadel. They run through halls, galleries, stairways, finding the Djun surrounded by guards. They quickly get through the men. Djun stands at his throne saying the shards are his. The preservers wrap him up and Two-Edge bars the room from his guards. Shuna guards him with a sword. The elves run through the three shard chambers to Venka. Cutter stops Krim from killing Winnowill. Her spirit would poison the world. Rayek hears Venka's call and escapes Winnowill. He awakes and Mender heals him. Venka and Strongbow take his place. Rayek is ready to recreate the Palace, but Cutter stops him. Rayek listens to Skot and Zhantee. They need a High One. Skywise heads for Aroree. Picknose is informed a bundle was found. They unwrap it and find Ekuar inside. The scroll whispered to him what happened. He shapes a wall but trolls grab him. Skywise reaches Aroree. Ekuar is their best chance of reaching the citadel quickly. A hole opens up and they find him below. Timmain growls threateningly and the trolls hand over Ekuar and the scroll. The guards pound on the door to the Djun's chamber.
Shards # 15 "Resurrection"
Venka and Strongbow hold Winnowill in her body. Flames are spreading. To Two-Edge, unexpected twists keep the game fresh. The guards are breaking in but Shuna can't kill the Djun. The burst in and put the flames out. Shuna tells Two-Edge to lock the door but he won't. She warns the others. The Djun runs in with his guards. Rayek blasts them all with fire. Aroree, Ekuar, Skywise, and Timmain come up through the floor with the scroll. Skywise says Ember will hold her ground until they fly to her. They all hold hands around the scroll. Timmain becomes an elf. Winnowill breaks free, telling Timmain to restore the Palace or her offspring will die. The two battle with minds and bodies. None can pierce the aura surrounding them. Grohmul Djun gets up saying the shards are his. Drub and Flam come in carrying treasures. Rayek asks Winnowill to join him, share the Palace. Ekuar traps the soldiers. Djun swings at Venka and Strongbow but Two-Edge stops him. Strongbow fires an arrow at the human's chest, but the kill isn't clean. Timmain's soul-fire is too much for Winnowill. She decides she has supped full of bodily pleasures and blasts the Wolfriders. The Djun approaches. She allows him to kill her, setting her black spirit free. Rayek won't allow it. He pulls the spirit into his body. Two-Edge looks down at his mother's body. Together, the elves call to the shards. The star-stuff glitters around them. The three crystal chambers collapse as the shell lifts into the sky.