Over one-hundred Hyuls ago, in the twenty-fourth year of the reign of King Yuri, MaDog the founder of the Chongun path was on a ship that was lost at sea. Her body was thought to have been lost forever. The final resting place of a great elder and legend remained a mystery... until now.
Within the library of the Chongunate, a vital clue to MaDog's burial site was recently uncovered. This clue took the form of a short note accompanying a carefully drawn map. The scroll, cracking with age revealed that MaDog's body was in fact not lost forever, but was found within the wreckage of her ill-fated ship along the southern arm of Dae Shore. Why then, was her body which was discovered by two Chongun, not returned to her path so she could be properly mourned? The crumbling letter revealed more; that at the very moment that the pair discovered her body, they received a sign.
A great black bear, the symbol of the clan that MaDog formed, appeared before them and casually approached. To their great wonder, the bear stood up before them and spoke, declaring that her body should not be returned to the Chongun for the strife that it may cause in the kingdom, but instead should be buried in secret.
With this maps discovery, hope of locating MaDog's final resting place was renewed. Unfortunately, the only clues to go on were the map and the description in the letter. Since the map contained neither a legend nor a frame of reference, the Chongun were at a loss and sought out the Rangers for their expertise.
Several members of the Chongunate led by LotusEmber and CinderZ, met with the Rangers at Trappers Paradise so they could inspect the map and consider the possible locations.
The Rangers led by WhisperWind and LaughingFox, though intrigued by the map, could only speculate on the meaning of the symbols used to mark the various landmarks. After much discussion and analyzing of the map, it was determined that the resting place was near a town or city and in a lightly forested area. It was also speculated that the once small trees described in the passage would be much larger now since so much time had passed. In addition, it appeared that some of the markings resembled flowers.
Closer than ever before, but still with no clear idea of where MaDog lay, the party decided the best way to go about locating her was to get out into the lands and search. They began with the only clear location outlined in the aged note, the southern end of Dae Shore. With the Rangers leading the party through the swirling snow, they scouted out the area. It was quickly determined that the only area that could possibly fit the description of the clues would have to be a nearby island. Since Hausson had been thoroughly searched over the years, it was decided that the next logical place to check would be the city of Kinung, a short boat ride away.
Their ferry landed safely and the party disembarked as night stole over the kingdoms. They all promptly borrowed horses from the horse merchant and set about searching the area. The point was brought up that if the burial site had been inside the city, it would have been uncovered during the construction and that the lightly forested area to the north better fit the loose description they had. Resuming the search with renewed energy, the party rode through the Forest of Elders searching for anything that resembled the area depicted on the map.
After much riding, the party came across an area with many flowers and a circle of very old trees. Dismounting, LotusEmber examined the strange flowers and exclaimed that they strongly resembled the symbols on the map! More searching of this area revealed that the circle of trees, though larger then the ones in the description, could easily be the area that was described in the note. The Rangers, though uncertain seemed confident that they were on the right track. CinderZ pointed out that if this were indeed the resting place of MaDog, and she was buried by a Chongun, they would know to bury her body deep and her belongings shallow.
Setting the Chongun Cuchulain and Shien to guard the area, the Magistrates set about combing the curiously soft grass for any sign of her grave.
As the pair searched, suddenly the roar of a large bear resounded through the clearing! Cuchulain readied his spear, but CinderZ declared that it was an omen, much like the bear that guided the Chongun in the aged note. Bolstered by this sign, they searched with renewed vigor. As the snow transitioned into sleet and then a bitterly cold rain, CinderZ discovered an oddly shaped mound in the grass.
It was decided that as a former elder, the honor of this moment should belong to CinderZ. Just as he went to overturn a bit of the earth with his Shinsho, a flicker of light illuminated the dark clearing. As he resumed digging in the ground the lights increased in number, even alighting upon the onlookers, revealing that the area was in fact blessed by Faeries.
A bow string! There in the hole surrounded in wet earth, revealed by the ethereal light. Beckoning to LotusEmber for assistance and helping her enter the shallow hole, CinderZ relinquished the task of uncovering the artifact to her. Her delicate hands carefully freed the intact bow from its resting place and held it before those assembled. The bow of MaDog, the very one that fired the spirit arrow and slew a god was once again in the hands of a Chongun!
As she raised the bow into the cold night air, a beam of light entered the clearing and struck each of the Chongun assembled. Their minds cleared and their worries eased, they were now certain they had found the final resting place of the great MaDog!
Carefully handing the ancient bow to CinderZ for safe-keeping, LotusEmber spied another object that was revealed by the unearthing of the bow. A simple stone, polished and covered in writing. As this new artifact was lifted from the hole a bear roared twice in the distance. The engraved letters danced across the surface of the stone and LotusEmber's lips moved as if of their own accord.
The Chongun Warrior is the Champion of Valor.
Loyalty to the Kingdom and it's rulers.
His Word is his Honor.
It was the original Chongun creed written by MaDog herself! LotusEmber passed the stone to CinderZ who gently wraps it in silk before she entered the hole once more. This time, after only a moment of searching a circlet is revealed. It is a modest circlet but for the large sapphire residing in it. There could be no doubt that this was the circlet of MaDog, the founder of the Sapphire Circle, a group formed to help repel the Sonhi Invasion.
While LotusEmber continued to search for more wonders, CinderZ's attention was drawn to the tree beside him. It is in the perfect position for one to sit and meditate over the grave site. In fact, two of the roots even seem to form a seat. Struck by inspiration, he pulled the leaves from the hollow between the roots with his bare hands revealing the dark soil beneath. Raising one of the shovels the party brought with them, he attempted to plunge it into the hollow. A loud metallic clang drew the attention of those assembled as the shovel flew through the air. Protruding from the earth was the hilt of a weapon, almost as if it were hidden there wedged between the roots away from the sacred resting place of MaDog. The still-sharp weapon slid easily from its resting place revealing a blade of Onyx.
The assembled Chongun were overjoyed by these discoveries, and pledged an eternal bond to the Rangers for their part in locating MaDog. CinderZ bestowed upon WhisperWind the blade of Onyx for the Rangers to keep as a symbol of the Chonguns deep gratitude.
As the Rangers departed, the remaining Chongun prepared to sanctify the burial ground. Fine Chongun-blue cloth was draped over the grave by LotusEmber as she recited the Chongun creed. Afterward CinderZ began to sing a funerary dirge and the notes of his song filled the clearing.
Child if you see the sun in the middle of the night
It's just the gods turning back the clock to set things right
When I was a young father and you were my sweet lad
And the wars that we fight in now weren't poisoning the land
Just you and I, a pot of rice, a lullaby for you
Put on your sword and shield and we will fight the day anew
As the words of his song died on the wind, the rain ceased and the clouds parted to allow the stars to shine upon the gathering.