The Fionavar Travesty

This article was originally published on Ferretbrain. I’ve backdated it to its original Ferretbrain publication date but it may have been edited and amended since its original appearance.

David, Paul, Kevin, Kim, and Jennifer are five college students at the University of Toronto. One day, they happen to catch a lecture on Celtic folklore by the reclusive expert Lorenzo Marcus, and afterwards are enlisted by Matt Sören, Lorenzo’s aide, to help Lorenzo find an excuse to ditch the academic reception scheduled after the talk. Back at Lorenzo’s hotel, Matt and Lorenzo reveal their true purpose: they are not from Earth at all, but world-hopping travellers from Fionavar, the First of All Worlds, and Lorenzo is really the mage Loren Silvercloak. Loren serves Aileil, the King of Brennin, and for the celebration of Aileil’s jubilee year Loren has been challenged by the head mage of the kingdom to go find five guests from another world, one for each decade of Aileil’s reign, to come enjoy the festivities.

At first sceptical, a few demonstrations of magic soon convince the group that Loren is serious – but during the ritual to pass between worlds, Dave panics and breaks the ritual circle, so he ends up dumped in a different area of the world altogether. Moreover, sinister forces are at work in Fionavar, with the Dark Lord Rakoth Maugrim stirring in his imprisonment under the mountain Rangat. Soon, each of the five will find themselves entangled in the affairs of Fionavar one way or another…

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