Part 71: Haven Is A Place On EarthPART 71: HAVEN IS A PLACE ON EARTH
Our heroes explored the mysterious village of Haven in search of the missing Brother Genitivi who holds the key to finding the mythical Ashes of Andraste which are critical to curing the kindly Arl Eamon who is the only one who can rally the kingdom against the treacherous Teyrn Loghain. And then we can defeat the Blight or something. Phew.
How do you propose we find Genitivi? The locals dont seem very cooperative.
I figure we bust into their houses and rummage through their stuff until we find some answers.
Or until they try to kill us.
Which is also an answer. Of sorts.
Seems normal enough. Chairs, hearth, bed
kitchen cabinet, bloodstained altar, giant wheel of cheese...
(This altar appears to have been used recently. A pool of blood remains, running over the sides in dark rivulets.)
Used for food preparation, perhaps?
Dont be stupid. Everyone point and laugh at Alistair.
I'm just trying to be optimistic. The other explanation is slightly more disturbing.
I wonder... the Crows often made sacrifices of blood, and it gave them uncanny abilities.
(Licks the altar)
What is it, boy? Was someone killed here?
Why is the dog better at this than you, Alistair?
Dont compare me to him. I have thumbs.
Someone left a book outside.
Ah, I hate having endings spoiled for me.
I dont think I want to eat whatever they fish out of here.
If we find out the locals have webbed feet--that's our cue to leave.
I heard that at one time they considered calling us the Kestrels. But you know. It didnt sing. It didnt dance.
This village is definitely only getting one star in Biancas Guide to Places to be Horribly Murdered in Ferelden.
I believe that is the shop the friendly guard mentioned.
Who are you? You're not from Haven...
Why does everyone tell me that like I don't already know it?
We... we don't get very many visitors.
Why does everyone say that as well?!
Because its true?
Can you tell me about Haven?
How would you describe the place you know only as home?
Have you seen a man called Brother Genitivi?
No... Ive never heard that name.
Great. Great conversation. Thanks. Id like to trade.
I don't have much, but I suppose you can take a look.
[The shop sells a few sundries and generic equipment. These strange arrows are the most notable items. This is the only shop in Ferelden that sells them.]
[We could go in the back room of the store, but something tells me it would be a bad idea.]
[Also inside the shop is this chest containing some valuable goods. Despite how on-edge Haven is, the shopkeeper doesnt bat an eyelid at you looting it.]
[This bow is pretty sweet. Theres also a gift for Morrigan and a special present for Zevran inside.]
Hmmm. That smell... this is Antivan leather, isn't it? I would know that anywhere!
I don't know how you knew I was missing my homeland, but this does the trick nicely. Thank you.
Youre quite welcome.
Now if only you could find me a prostitute or two, a bowl of fish chowder and a corrupt politician, I'd really feel like I was home! (Laughs)
And they fit as well! Marvelous!
[And the boots magically change from gift into equippable item.]
This looks promising. Actually, it looks really creepy but its probably where we need to go.
Its a Chantry? A Chantry covered in spikes.
Maybe its having a rebellious phase.
Do you hear it? Singing from the chantry. The entire town, from the sounds of it.
Lets introduce ourselves. Religious folk are always friendly, after all.
we are blessed beyond measure; we are chosen by the Holy and Beloved to be Her guardians.
This sacred duty is given to us alone; rejoice, my brethren, and prepare your hearts to receive Her.
Lift up your voices, and despair not, for She will raise Her faithful servants to glory when Her--
I understand that you are new here, but common courtesy dictates that one shouldn't interrupt. No matter. We were just about done here anyway.
But your Reverence, we have not completed the Sacraments of the Holy Mother or... or sung the Invocation--
Be calm, Nuada. We have an honored guest. Surely the Sacraments can wait.
(Sigh) How nightmarish to live in such a rural village, the only entertainment being priests who go on about the chant of this and that.
Just once I'd like to walk into one of these places and discover a lively dance, or a drinking festival. Or an orgy. But alas, no.
Does your friend often discuss orgies in church?
That is all for today, my children. I shall see you tomorrow. For now, I should see to our visitor.
There was no need to end the sermon.
It is better this way. Many of the villagers are uncomfortable in the presence of strangers.
Is there a Brother Genitivi here?
We find outsiders... disruptive. They bring others, and before long, Haven is changed. We will go to any lengths to prevent that.
You understand a man's need to protect his family, don't you?
You havent met my family.
Brothers, you know what must be done.
[And then a violence happened.]
What a completely expected turn of events.
This is probably important for something.
[If we try leaving the Chantry now we find the village has filled up with enemy cultists.
Many of them are unarmed villagers who attack with their bare hands. This does not work out well for them.]
[If we return to the shop and go into the back room we find ]
(The armor and clothing left on this dismembered man indicate that he was from Redcliffe--one of Arl Eamons knights.)
[If we had found this guy earlier, everyone in Haven would have turned hostile. Anyway, back to the Chantry.]
Now this is a proper secret door. The craftsmanship is remarkable.
Brother Genitivi, I presume.
Who are you? They... they've sent you to finish it?
Im Bianca. Im here to help you.
You don't know how glad I am to see someone who isn't from this village. I-- (groans)
(Sigh) The Iegs not doing so well and... and I can't feel my foot.
I have some bandages. Maybe theyll help.
(Coughs) Thank you. That... that feels much better.
I don't have time to rest now. I'm so close. The Urn is just up that mountain.
I need to find the Ashes. Arl Eamon gets sicker by the day.
The arl is sick? Will he live?
The arl was poisoned under Loghains orders. Oh, and Teyrn Loghain is evil, if you havent been following current events.
Politics. Never did anyone any good.
The arl is a noble soul. But the Ashes... the Ashes will surely cure him.
Haven lies in the shadow of the mountain that holds the Urn. There is an old temple there, built to protect it.
The door is always locked, but I know what the key is.
Eirik wears a medallion that opens the temple door... I've seen what he does with it.
Yes, that is your key. Take me to the mountainside, and I will show you.
Could you answer some questions for me first?
All right. What is on your mind?
Haven. Its a little odd, isnt it?
Its been a long day.
Well, it wasnt exactly what I expected it to be.
What do you know about Haven and its people?
They call themselves the Disciples of Andraste, and they are very, very devoted. One could say fanatically so.
They must be here to protect the Um... but they speak of Andraste as though... as though She were still alive.
They must be talking about the Urn.
I thought so at first, but I'm not so sure anymore.
Was there something else you wanted to discuss?
Why does Haven have revered fathers?
I do not know. When the Chantry was established, it was decided that only female priests would ever be ordained.
It is possible that the villagers--the Disciples of Andraste--predate the Chantry, and so have no knowledge of the Chantry's rules.
What were the villagers doing with you?
They seemed intent on finding out personal information about me. Where I grew up, things like that...
They were planning to place a fake Genitivi in Denerim.
How do you know?
There was an imposter Weylon at your house.
An imposter? What happened to the real Weylon?
Im sorry, but hes dead.
Ah, poor Weylon... I should never have dragged you into this... Maker take you into His hands, my boy.
Im sorry, Brother.
He believed in me even when I lost faith in myself. I will honor his memory.
[You can choose not to tell Genitivi about Weylon, but I like this little scene.]
Was there... was there something else you wanted to say?
Do you know about the knights who were sent to look for you?
Yes, of course. How could I forget?
Eirik said they were ambushed, some killed, a few brought back to Haven to be questioned.
He was so self-righteous about it, so smug. He seemed pleased that he had tortured and murdered these men.
Eiriks not going to be bothering anyone else for a while.
Good. Eirik and his fellows were a blemish in the Maker's sight. If the Maker would even deign to look upon this world, that is...
(Sigh) Let's just talk about something else now, shall we?
The Ashes will cure Arl Eamon, wont they?
I certainly hope the Ashes will save him. The legends speak of their miraculous powers.
There are many stories of pilgrims being healed, the blind seeing, and the lame dancing in joy.
Perhaps it is Andraste that does this. Perhaps it is belief itself: by believing the Ashes are magical, you make them so.
I suppose thats possible. Im only doing this because I literally have no other options.
Anyway, that can be discussed once we actually have the Ashes and the arl is better.
Im ready to leave for the temple.
All right. Take me to the mountainside, and I will show you how to use the medallion.
Are you sure you can make the journey?
It is not that far and... will you let me lean on you? For the Urn, any pain is worth enduring.
Im half your height. Lean on Sten instead.
Will that be all, or do you wish me to give him a piggyback ride as well?
Just the lean will be fine.
All right. Lets leave now.
Ah, good. Help me up here. I'll try not to slow us down.
10,000 FEET LATER
[You get moved straight here, so people expecting any thrilling mountain climbing action are out of luck.]
Here we are. Give me the medallion, and let's see if I remember.
Yes... you see, it can be manipulated, just like this...
And there... a key to open the way.
I wonder who created that.
It may have been passed down through the generations from the first people who built the temple.
Now, where does this go?
So, when does the Lich King show up?
NEXT TIME: Bianca Aeducan and the Temple of Doom
NEW CODEX CONTENT:
Brother Ferdinand Genitivi
Death of a Templar