The Legends of the Magical Trees of Alquennas
Throughout the ages and throughout all of the realms, religions, and races of Alquennas, there are a few legends that all share. One of these legends is the one concerning the Magical Trees of Alquennas.
It is said that several Immortal Trees exist, each with their own unique properties, all located on different continents throughout the world.
Each of the Immortals has great power. Their woods are sought for the qualities that they can bring to magical items and their fruits are sought for the gifts they can bestow upon those fortunate enough to ingest them.
Each of the Immortals is protected by guardians too terrible to describe in addition to cunning traps and puzzles designed to fool the unwary seeker. Once the seeker has passed the tests, they will find the object of their search located in the center of a lush garden.
Many have quested for the Immortal Trees and their gardens. None have ever reported finding any of them. However, items have been seen that have powerful qualities that may have come from these trees.
A few skeptics have claimed that the legends of the Immortal Trees were inspired by the descriptions of the Heart trees that are found in the Elven Vales. Elven sources claim that the Immortals are real and are not Heart trees. They do admit that the Heart trees might bear some kinship to the Immortal Trees but it has never been proven.
When it comes to receiving the gifts of these Magical Trees, several warnings are provided for the seeker:
First, do not take the gift unless it is offered to you. The trees are quite sentient and, like any normal tree, they drop the odd branch or ripe fruit on the ground near their trunks. Stealing such will indeed provide some measure of the gifts that each tree is known for because that is their very nature. However, it is stated that because these items are tainted - whether by being stolen or by having some trace of rot in them that led to their being shed by the tree - so too are the gifts received from them. Of such tainted things are great curses born.
Second, do not harm the tree when receiving your gift. Accept the tree's gift fairly, pay honestly the price requested if one is requested and take no more than what is given. "Biting the hand that feeds you" in this case is also a good way to receive a tainted gift. And again, begin a painful and cursed cycle of education about gratitude.
Third, while the trees are immortal, their gifts are not. Unless properly protected, the fruit will spoil and the wood will warp. Choose wisely how your gift is used, once you have it and treat it like the treasure it is.
The Immortal Trees are:
Tree of Life
It is said that the fruit of the Tree of Life has the power to heal any wound or sickness and can cure those who have been turned to undead creatures.
With regards to vampires, it will cure them physically; however it will not return their souls to them.
Wood from this tree will create powerful healing items and strengthen any protections they are used in.
Tree of Death
The Tree of Death, as the name states, offers a deadly fruit that quickly and painlessly takes the life of any living creature. Any creature that is smaller than a dragon will surrender to the sweet fruit's taste within 1 and 1/2 seconds. Creatures that are the size of a dragon or greater will surrender to the fruit within 4 seconds.
It is said that the Tree of Death is the counter part to the Tree of Life and that one of its fruits were used in the creation of the first undead creatures on the realms.
Weapons made from the wood of this tree will always hit their mark and kill their intended victims.
Tree of Knowledge
It is said that the Tree of Knowledge was the third three planted on Alquennas and through its roots it has absorbed all of the knowledge from all of the realms. Anyone that eats of its fruit will gain all the knowledge of the realms.
Any wood from this tree will aid research and scrying. It also forms excellent protections for books and scrolls when built into chests, shelves or the like protecting the knowledge stored within from pests, aging, and external damage.
Tree of the Monarch
The Tree of the Monarch is said to be a direct conduit to the Monarch. It is said that its fruit will remove any curses and that it also has the ability to return one's lost soul back to them. How the latter is accomplished, no one knows since no one has ever spoken of receiving the gift or to one who has.
Wood from this tree is said to protect the bearer as nothing else can for holding it means that the Monarch himself is at their side. Those who bear such a gift are reminded that misusing it means they anger the Monarch - not the best of ideas!
Tree of Magick
The Tree of Magick is said to be the beginning source of magick on Alquennas.
Those who take a single bite of one of its fruits that do not possess magick will be gifted with the ability to wield magick. They will need to harness their ability and study greatly; however they can now wield magick.
Those who take a single bite of one of its fruits that already wield magick will be gifted with the understanding of advanced magick and the ability to wield advanced magick.
Those who take a single bite of one of its fruits that already can wield advanced magick will be gifted with the ability to wield all of the methods of magick regardless of race or vocation.
It is said that wood taken from this tree will provide great benefits to a user of magick when used in a focus or a magical device, transforming such items into Artefacts of Power.
Tree of the Mind
The Tree of the Mind grants the gift of a clearer mind. Those that partake of its fruit are gifted with the ability of the mind power. If one is already a psion, it grants the user greater abilities and power. It is also said that simply tasting the fruit will cure any madness, fear, or mental affliction that the seeker is suffering.
Wood from this tree may be used to create items that enhance the focus and use of any mental ability, be it of a psionic nature or simply that of concentration or study.
Tree of Time
The Tree of Time is considered the most powerful of all of the trees because, if one takes a bite of one of its fruits, it will allow that person to view any event in any realm at any time.
Additionally, it is rumored that it will allow the eater to interact with the specific event to alter the outcome.
Another rumor is that completely consuming the fruit will grant the seeker the gift of time. Whether this makes the seeker immortal or merely restores lost youth and strength is not clearly stated in the legends.
It is said that wood from this tree will protect and preserve anything stored within it. It will not age, wither, rust, or rot.
In addition to the seven Magical Trees listed above, there are the three Trees of Bounty:
Tree of All Nuts
Tree of All Fruits
Bush of All Berries
Each of the Trees of Bounty always appears to be both in bloom and in fruit. Blossoms of all sorts and colors appear on the trees. Hanging from the branches are examples of each and every species of edible nut, fruit, or berry ever grown on Alquennas - even those that are now extinct and are only legends.
Once a fruit is picked from the branch, it becomes a perfect ripe example of whatever food the seeker wishes to find. The seeds from the harvested fruits may be planted but they will bear only simple non magical trees of the type which normally produces the fruit that was harvested. At most, a seeker may pick one bushel basket of fruit from the Tree of Bounty in his lifetime. Only one basket, but it may contain many different types of fruit.
No wood may be taken from the Trees of Bounty, only food.