Cypress Queen's Paraphernalia
Cypress Queen's Paraphernalia is a collection of relics in Pathfinder: Kingmaker.
Storyteller's Reward[edit | edit source]
10000 gold coins, 1125 experience
Their Story[edit | edit source]
This is the story of the collection, as told by the Storyteller:
"I hear the noise of the capital. Merchants shouting, horses neighing, soldiers' armor clanking... But this is all from far away, from beyond the tall walls of the palace garden. The noise is barely audible through the lush vegetation. But here, in the cool stillness, I can hear two lovers whisper beneath the shadow of an ancient cypress tree. I... I'm not one of them. No, I'm just a frail cypress twig."
"These two cannot be together. She is a queen, and he is her loyal knight – perhaps too loyal. But their love could not be kept secret for long. The king ordered the knight executed, but the knight managed to slip away to the wilderness of the Narlmarches in the Stolen Lands. He hid there, away from civilization, with only animals and birds to keep him company. To remember his lost home, he brought a cypress twig with him and planted it in front of his hut."
"The tree took root, and the knight spent long hours talking to the cypress, imagining it was his queen. And one day... one day, I answered. Since ancient times, these lands had been home to the fey, so it's little surprise that a dryad would be born within the tree. We became friends. He told me of his homeland, and his beloved queen, and the merry life at court – the celebrations, the parades, the tournaments... I wanted so badly to see it all with my own eyes!"
- "Why couldn't you go see the city for yourself?"
- "You know not? Dryads are bonded to their trees. We cannot stray far from them. And even if we could, our kind tends not to get favorable reactions from humans. They find us too strange, too alien. I doubt I would have been warmly received in the city."
- "Did you fall in love?"
- "Of course not! The very thought is shameful. The knight remained faithful to his true love till the end of his days. As for me... Well, I was born from a twig of the cypress under which the knight and the queen's love story began. I like to think I was a child of their love, in a way. I never told him directly, but I always considered the knight to be like a father to me."
"So I decided I wanted to become a queen myself. And why not? After all, the Green Mother gave me my fair share of beauty and magic, and the knight taught me all about how to rule a country!"
"I organized a celebration – all the local fey were invited. I had no idea there were so many of my kin in the neighborhood! Everyone came! Shy nymphs, merry satyrs with their reed pipes, tender nixies, leprechauns with their fancy buckled hats and shiny boots... The celebration lasted three days, and my guests enjoyed it so much that every one of them proclaimed me their queen at the end. I wasn't establishing prisons, or taxes, or other nasty things common in human courts, but the social life of my court was vibrant enough to make any human monarch jealous!"
- "And what kind of functions did your fey court conduct?"
- We did all kinds of amazing things! Sometimes I hosted dances that went on all night, or held tournaments in which satyrs would entertain the audience, kicking each other for the right to kiss me. There were even parades organized for the local animals. Just imagine – deer, boars, and bears, all marching in lines! Even those fey who initially didn't like the idea of a kingdom were happy with things. I think we may have been the only kingdom in the world built without a single drop of blood spilled, build on a foundation of joy and happiness!"
- "So, your kingdom wasn't real? It was basically just a game?"
- "What an odd suggestion! How about your country? Is it real? Or could it just be a game with complicated rules and high stakes? Our kingdom was as real as we were."
"Life in the woods changed a lot over time, and the knight changed, too. After spending too much time around fey and meditating alone in nature, he became more religious and built a shrine to Erastil with his own hands. Rumor spread around the area of some hermit or saint living in the swamps – though, to be frank, there wasn't anything saintly about him, as far as I could tell. But people started coming to meet him, and over time, a small village grew around the shrine, built by people in search of a new life."
"As word spread of our kingdom in the woods, some people were surprised, while some just smile knowingly. After all, the idea of a kingdom was familiar to humans, so fey living in a kingdom made them seem less alien, less strange and scary. So we began living side by side in peace. Sometimes fey would visit humans just to share a cup of tea, sometimes there were even unions that resulted in children – human children with some of the magic of the fey. Some of those children deserve their own legends – but those are other stories for another time."
"Human monarchs are quite different from their subjects. They have eyes everywhere. Their arms are long, and their memories longer. As the village grew, news of the location of a disgraced knight made its way to the king. Eventually, a small but heavily armed group of king's men arrived in the village, demanding the hermit knight leave with them immediately. The villagers, both human and fey, were ready to fight to defend him, but the knight followed his unwelcome guests voluntarily. He said he wanted to avoid bloodshed, and he was old and longed to see his homeland and beloved queen once again – even if it ended with his execution."
"So the knight was taken away. Everyone grieved for him, myself especially – but as time passed, the pain subsided, as it tends to. Both the village and the fey kingdom happily lived in peace for many years after."
- "What happened to the knight?"
- "I know not – this story was not about him. The dryad never saw him again. Perhaps he slipped away from his guards and accomplished a slew of heroic deeds afterward. Or perhaps his captors executed him on the first day, simply taking the king his head."
- "Or maybe he died on the executioner's block, but in the city of his youth, gazing once more upon his queen – older now, but as beautiful as ever. Or maybe the city had changed beyond recognition, and his queen had died many years ago, and he realized too late that his true home was a village built in the swamps. Or maybe the king saw that the pious old man standing before him shared nothing in common with the bold young upstart that had his honor so long before, and thus pardoned him."
- "Alas, alas! We have no way of knowing what really happened. Time spared not even the kingdom where his story started, so your guess here is as good as mine."
- "What happened to the village and the kingdom after that?"
- "If your wonder is strong enough, you could visit the Narlmarches yourself and ask the locals – I suspect someone there would know what happened next. But this story was about how the fey kingdom was established. And that story is over."