We've been extremely interested in learning more about Princess Lavender and other aspects of Free Realms Lore; so we made it a point to find the most knowledgable lore dev at Fan Faire to ask some questions.
If you've been getting your Free Realms news at ZAM for a while, you may remember a Free Realms lore preview that we published the week before launch. The information we published has kept us interested in the inter workings of the Free Realms universe; so we made it a point to find the most knowledgeable lore developer at Fan Faire to ask some questions.
Terrence Yee: Hi, my name is Terrence Yee and I'm the World Lead Designer on Free Realms.
ZAM: Let's start off with Briarwood. Can you give us some history on the area and then the Fairy Princess Lavender?
Terrence: OK, this assumes you know the main plotline. The fairy princess Lavender, when she was exiled by her sister, she was hurt and distraught. So, being a little bit more melodramatic, she holed herself off to this dark, creepy and mysterious area known as Briarwood, which has always been known to be the scary place where people don't go. So, her being the more emotional - she kind of blended in well in there. So she holed up in there, she was an excellent druid so she was able to wield her magics and form protective barriers around the area. It's kind of indicative of the thorns you may see creeping around her, they're actually her symbol. So, as you get in, you'll see the thorns growing in. So as you get closer to her, that represents her - protecting the area. The interesting thing about Lavender is that, at first glance you may think she's a maniacal and crazy person, but really, she's just hurt. The thorns you think of as a dangerous mechanism, but they're meant to be defensive for her.
ZAM: You mention she was exiled from the sanctuary. What did she do to get exiled? Was this before or after the King and the Queen of the sanctuary were poisoned?
Terrence: This was much after, actually. So after the king and the queen passed away, nobody knew exactly why and they were a bit suspicious. Lavender had her own questions and she was obviously very heart-broken over the entire incident. So she began to try to figure out what happened, and this made the Royal Advisor, Geoffrey, a little bit too wary, so he was able to turn Queen Valeria (who wasn't queen at the time) against her sister. So he was saying "she could be trouble, maybe she just needs to go while we sort this mess out." That's what basically happened.
ZAM: Now, did Lavender really do what everyone thinks she does? Or what everyone thinks she did? Or does she just have a bad rap.
Terrence: She just has a bad rap. You as a player uncover this as you go on. She acts and feels the way she does because of that bad rap. Her parents died, her sister betrayed her in some ways, and she was kicked out of the only home she knew. She doesn't know who to trust or who to turn to. Very tough life for her.
ZAM: Now what sort of decisions did the Changelings have to make to survive the unbinding that made them so twisted?
Terrence: We haven't really discussed that, exactly, to find out what the unbinding did in terms of mutating them and twisting them. We haven't really gone to that part yet.
ZAM: So let's move over to the Shrouded Glade. Who was Ayani, and what does she have to with the replenishment of the land?
Terrence: I'll have to back to you on this lore, but when the unbinding happened, she lead her people into the caverns because that was the only safe place at the time. She was the one who kept them, guided them and lead them through those troubling times. After many years, we don't really discuss how long, Ayani came out and was extremely saddened by the destruction. … She did cry a lot and it was her tears that brought the land back to life.
ZAM: What's the Heartseed and why is it so important that Lavender would take half of it when she vanished?
Terrence: The Heartseed represents the lifeblood of the land. As Pixie royalty, you were entrusted to protect it. Lavender felt that she would be responsible for her half when she left.
ZAM: Why is it so important?
Terrence: The Heartseed is also what spawns the Tree Palace. The palace was founded because of the Heartseed, and that's why there's actually a Tree Palace in Briarwood!
ZAM: Where is Lavender now?
Terrence: She is Briarheart Castle. As you complete the main storyline, you will gain access to the castle itself. Then you'll see this character that is known only as Darkthorn at the time. You will then end up doing some work for her and gaining her trust. You will eventually find out that she is actually the exiled Princess Lavender.
ZAM: Finally, who are the Chugawugs, and where were they exiled to?
Terrence: A long long time ago, the Chugawugs were very simple creatures - jovial, without a care in the world, excellent juice masters. Later on they developed a relationship with the pixie royal family where they would become their guardians. They were THE guardians - that was their bloodline at that point, they became serious at that point. When the King and Queen were assassinated, Geoffrey recognized that the Chugawug loyalty was more to the pixie royal family line than him so he started these rumours going around by saying to Valerian that "Oh the Chugawugs can't be trusted, it must have been an inside job." So he got her to basically turn on them as well. They got exiled, or kicked out except for one, who is a little merchant. They got dispersed and they went one of three ways. Some of them went back to their simpler roots - they're up in the Chugawug thing and they're having their party festivals now. The other ones became bandits; they decided "we've got to survive on our own, it's only up to us, we're the only ones we can count on." So they became the Chugawug Bandits that are out in the Greenwood forest. Another third went to continue their oath of loyalty to the Pixie royal family, and the only one that they could get close to at the time is Darkthorn, aka Princess Lavender, which explains why they're in Briarwood, naturally.
ZAM: So why were the Chugawugs solely blamed for the death of the King and the Queen?
Terrence: Well they weren't solely to blame, it's just that Geoffrey recognized that this was a powerful military force that could disturb my plans, so I need to neutralize them. So he just gets Queen Valerian to give them the boot.
ZAM: Can you give us any hints as to who was ultimately responsible for the death of the King and the Queen?
Terrence: Well, Geoffrey played a huge, huge part, but as you find out in the storyline, he's just another player in the picture. We're not quite ready to give you another piece.
ZAM: Thank you so much for these new pieces to the Free Realms puzzle!
Terrence: You're welcome and thank you!
Andrew "Tamat" Beegle