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Ultima Online Spotlight: "Hail Wisp!"

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Babbling Loonie
Stratics Veteran
Stratics Legend
Hail Wisp!

There are many scholars in Britannia, studying everything from medicine to monsters. Niaren, a scholar of the Baja shard, happens to study wisps.

"My journeys through our world have been many and various, but in all the years that I have wandered our lands, my encounters with wisps have been my fondest memories. I remember, as a young adventurer, hearing tales of wisps leading the unwary into horrible traps, as well as to treasure. Were wisps good or evil? I was told they carried no treasure on them and that they simply wandered our world aimlessly, but was warned that they possessed great skill in Magery and would defend themselves if attacked. I found the various conflicting tales confusing, and so paid little attention to the creatures. I made it my practice to simply greet the creatures with, 'Hail Wisp!' and continue on my way.

"Many years passed and my encounters with wisps were unremarkable, until one day outside my home, a wisp spoke to me. I found myself frozen to the spot. Wisps could talk? How amazing! I was well on the road to becoming a respectable scholar, and this was just too amazing to ignore. I began searching the libraries and ancient texts for references to wisps. My diligence produced one book written about talking to wisps, as well as numerous references to the odd assistance they have given other wanderers. The facts were not encouraging, but none the less, I decided to launch my own study of these odd creatures and have begun writing my discoveries in a series of volumes for others to learn more about the wisp culture. Alas, wisps will indeed need to learn our language as it is completely impossible to verbalize theirs. However, one can begin to distinguish intentions of their language with careful listening. Yes, they are sentient and very intelligent, but view the world quite differently from humans.

"I have developed a deep fondness for the wisps. My favorite resides in Wisp Grove and claims the lower peninsula and coast just south of the pillars. I have most often heard it referred to at 'Jrr,' and thus I greet it with, 'Hail wisp Jrr!' I think of Jrr as a male--he strikes me as such, though I have no idea if they have genders. He is my favorite and one of the most talkative, especially after having cast my protection upon him. He is a most curious creature and requests much information on trees, flowers and other features of the landscape, as well as seeming particularly interested in the differences between land and water. He also prefers his area clear of monsters, and will ask for its removal should one encroach upon his domain. He is also quite valiant and came to my call for help when sorely beset by a marauding air elemental. I also believe he is genuinely happy to see me when I visit, as he will often zoom towards me in a sparkling flurry of sound. Many of the other wisps, in the grove and elsewhere in our world, now speak to me regularly whenever I approach. A few of the other resident wisps will call to us as we wander past on our stroll through his favored terrain. I attribute the increasing communications to my friendship with Jrr. Though I enjoy the company of other wisps, which is necessary in my ongoing study of them, Jrr will always hold a special place in my heart.

"Blue wisps, generally speaking, are friendly, intelligent creatures and seem interested in opening communications with us as a species. As a master of linguistics, my observations are that they, as a collective, are in the process of attempting to learn our language. I refer to them as a collective, as it seems that what one wisp knows, all wisps know. My interactions and observations of wisps have also led me to wonder what might have happened to them long ago. They all seem to carry a sense of overwhelming sadness, as though they suffer from some great loss. Did the ancient evils of our world bind some great creature that once roamed our world as freely as we do now? Are the shadow wisps the result of the same type of cruelties that produced the fire steeds? We may never know the answers to these questions as any ancient knowledge of them is lost to us. Wisps are an alluring mystery for me, but most of all, they are my special delight in this world."

Niaren, The Admirable

Grandmaster Scholar

Britain, Baja

Please join us next week, when we spotlight another tale from Britannia. As always, keep an eye on FYI, where we'll announce future spotlight topics. We look forward to sharing more tales of your accomplishments and adventures in the world of Britannia!
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