The Mana Tree
|The Mana Tree|
The Mana Tree was a strong, poweful being. It was said to be the most alive thing in existence, as it was born of pure life force. Therefore, unlike most other trees, it was fully sentient. It could communicate with the minds of any other living beings that were near it or directly touching its roots. It controlled the flow of Mana and thus could also practice magic, though it did so rarely, and was potentially the most powerful magic user, capable of recalling Mana to itself and limiting access to it. It remains unknown what the Tree's current condition is. Some think it would have died by its own actions, others think it simply chose to isolate again.
Origins of the Mana Tree
Before the Hantu could master their control over the elements, they struggled to tame the chaotic force of Mana that surrounded them like a storm. Through a joint effort they were able to bind the storm to a single point in space, the Source of Mana. The Source became a point of stability which partly satiated the need for Mana to constantly chase itself across the universe. Mana around the source began to settle into the land that the Hantu wove around it: Gasaron. It took the form of trees, grasses and all manner of plantlife, deeply connected to all the elements.
Not all pure Mana settled, however, and some continued to flow. It coalesced into a single tree, larger than any other tree on Gasaron. Its roots grew to embrace the entire planet and dug deep to directly touch the Source. The tree and its network of roots became the only pure Mana to flow around Gasaron, allowing some who can tap into this flow to practice magic: using Mana to manipulate the elements.
The Tree lived in a secluded cave, deep underground as it needed no light to survive. Before their demise, the Hantu would visit it regularly and considered it as nearly one of their own.
The Tree gave off the constant blue glow indicating pure mana running through it. It bore large seedless fruits, dark blue in colour, said to be capable of restoring life itself. Its leaves were broad and blue-green in colour. They had many properties, including as magical focuses. If consumed properly, such as brewed into tea, they could cure ailments and strengthen one's connection to the world's Mana for a time. Tritan legends speak of the Tree sharing these gifts with their primordial ancestors and the Gods that once walked Gasaron before them.
Over the millenia before the Ancean Era, the Tritans of the Clear Sea had grown too reliant on the Tree. They began demanding its fruits to prolong their lives, seeing what was once gifts as their natural right. Disappointed by how the world had changed, the Tree began to refuse visitors. When some Tritans forced their way into its cave it unleashed a display of its power that was enough to deter any further intrusions. Over several centuries the generations of Tritans that came after eventually began to interpret stories of the Tree as myth, and its existence was forgotten.
The Tree lived in solitude, communicating only with the Irminsul through its roots for millenia. It was only during the Aemilian Era that a group of Human mages discovered its cave deep under the Island of Candor. As the Tree had ignored most creatures in the outside world, the mages were able to gain its trust and lie about the state of the world. They blamed many events such as the fall of Keshlam on the free access to Mana that everybody enjoyed. They claimed this was too dangerous and that they needed the Tree's help in controlling the use of Magic. Believing that it would help, the Tree recalled all Mana flowing through its roots except for a single root running under The Tower.
The events that ensued are known as the Mana War. It is thought that the final earthquake that ended the war causing great damage to all sides was in fact caused by the Tree itself. Angry at the war waging around it and realising it had been deceived, it unleashed a mana explosion so great that it shattered the land that connected Hurnscald and Tulimshar and destroyed Keshlam once and for all, ensuring that the Humans would not forget their punishment easily. Its location was once again lost.
→ Main article: Irminsul
In rare occasions, the Mana Tree is able to produce seeds in its fruits. These Mana Seeds are capable of producing an Irminsul. While smaller and much less powerful than their parent, these trees are also sentient and connected to the flow of Mana.