From the Heart is an important quest for every Aisling to complete, as it allows you to cast Aite on yourself by visiting Marlin in the Loures castle dungeon. Though this quest is largely a story of heartache and sentimental love, it touches on many dark areas of lore, such as Conix, Dubhaimid, and the political corruption of Loures.
Start the quest by going to the Loures castle dungeon and speaking with Marlin, the imprisoned wizard, about the "From the Heart" topic. You will want to explore every avenue of conversation he offers before the next step, which will require talking to him more than one time. Once you have discussed all possible topics, head towards the library and meet Jean in his chambers to the west of the throne room. Talk to Jean about the Cycle of Becoming, then follow the thread about the Theology of the Conjunction. Again, you will want to hear all he has to say, but under no circumstances select the option "Even if it would damn others" when you ask him if he loves Bella.
From here you will head to the East Woodlands, and go to the Enchanted Garden. Around the northern boundary you'll find a bright red betony flower ((81,7)). You'll need two Beothaich Deums to entice the faerie into showing herself. Once you reach the coordinates follow the conversation from the text below. You will need to wait twice in order to hear all the options you need to proceed. When you've heard all you need, head back to Marlin and tell him about the faerie. He will give you more information; head to the bedroom off the side of the kitchen (you passed through the kitchen on your way to the dungeon), and stand at the foot of the southern-most bed. It used to be pillow-less, but some caretaker has seen that it found a pillow during the renovations to the castle.
Inside the dark maze you will need to walk around until you find the dark stone. If you are here to hunt Dark Belts, you'll find they drop from the Dunan only. Dunan no longer spawn in the maze past the 40th insight. Despite the fact that different insight ranges are sent to different mazes, the final chamber is the same, so it is possible for Aislings of different insight ranges to perform the rite together. The first to enter the circle will assume the role of Heart of Fire and will receive more exp than the Heart of Moon. Navigate your way through the various pop ups and when you finish you'll have a legend mark that corresponds with your role in the rite. You can exit the chamber through the door to the north and report your findings to Marlin.
If you don't have a partner, you can also perform this ritual alone as the Heart of Stone, though it is highly reccomended that you do not choose this option, as Marlin will not cast aite on you.
The tragedy of my imprisonment is that I miss Bella. Her coils of hair caught my heart years ago. It drives my dreadful dreams.
Who is Bella?
Bella is my love, from whom am I separated. My life depends on a ribbon of parchment between us. I sneak out letters to her. I have no more. But I have a message. Will you tell her something?
- Where is Bella?
- Bella? She's in Piet I assume. She is the barkeep of the tavern there. I haven't heard from her in over a season. Jean might know where to find her.
- I will tell the message to Bella.
- Thank you. The message is:
- Dear Bella, The Chamber blackens. It's maze twists deeper into my mind. Each turn reveals darker creatures that I hadn't realized dwelt within. Save me from this Sgriotic realm.
- - Your love, Marlin.
- Take it to her now.
Why were you imprisoned?
I was imprisoned for what I know. I have seen the blackness created by the uncaring hearts. I discovered where the maddening rock had lain for thousands of years.
The Grimlok and Goblins battled over that Conix of Atavism since Deoch 6. Cyril, the councilor of Loures, imprisoned me. Cyril is dead by horrors I dare not imagine. Jean is Councilor now.
- What is the Conix?
- If I speak, I will lose my head. Go to the library.
- What about the new Councilor, Jean?
- Jean, the acting councilor of Loures, is a scholar of magic. He studies the arcane and the old.
- Where is Jean?
- Often I used to see him in the Library of Loures, before recent events.
- Does not Jean care you are imprisoned?
- He says he regrets my situation.
- Does Jean know Bella?
- Yes. Bella visits him often. A guard tells me that she weeps for my release.
What Dreadful dreams?
Black fluttering wings, like the pit of my heart, clutching my love. A red scarf recedes from me and Bella's cry with it.
Hello. What can I do for you?
Cycle of Becoming.
The Cycle of Becoming is the flow of one god into another, nominally beginning with Deoch and ending with Sgrios, although it is completely cyclical.
Theology of the Conjunction.
The new year is the transformation. It is the conjunction, where two gods are indistinguishable.
Almost all cultures celebrate it. Each recognizes the divine moment: The conjunction.
For example, the conjunction of Deoch's intoxication with Glioca's compassion is the birth of love. It is almost like a child. It seems so different from its parents, but it resembles their combined parts.
The transformation of Deoch's hot intoxication into Glioca's moonlit compassion reminds me of sweet Bella who used to visit me.
Where is Bella?
Bella walks, in deep consideration, at dusk and dawn in the garden.
She told me the silliest of things.
What did she say?
She told me that on a twilight walk in the garden she met a faerie.
Please tell me more
She waited until dawn or dusk just north of the Lover's Glade. She patiently walked through the woods until she came a clearing of a betony flower, where she saw a red silk scarf. She waited.
It was a faerie. She held conversation with the faerie, who revealed that between midnight and dawn she danced there. Bella watched her dance several nights.
Do you love Bella?
I would burn down the world for her. I would do anything for her.
Would you release Marlin?
I would release Marlin if Bella would bewed me. Gladly.
You notice what appears to be part of a silk red scarf.
You wait but nothing appears. Set down some Faerie Wine?
- peeks* Are all the mundanes away?
I see you seeing me. Dance with me. Wee.
The faerie putes a new freckle on your cheek
- peeks* Are all the mundanes away?
Have you seen Bella?
She danced with me.
Where is she now?
Dark, beating wings clutched her and carried her off!
Did you give Bella the letter?
I found a faerie in the garden who said...
My dream is true. A black-hearted creature has stolen my love. Please help me find her.
How can I help you?
In the same dream that began with the black-winged creature swooping Bella away.
Under a pillowless bed in Loures castle, a shadow opens up and swallows her. The shadow ebbs and flows in two minutes. Only during the even minute can one follow it.
A chaotic maze and finally white circles that pulse to movement of the stars.
A man and woman perform the rite of the first transformation that Jean barely understands.
What do you think it means?
At night I hear the pulse from below the castle. I dream of incongruous dark forms, slumbering. They slip from the shadows of the cracks in the stone, dubhaimid seeping from Loures castle.
This castle is built the site of something very old, and something that is now very powerful, and very dark.
I think I can do it.
There is one more thing. Will you give her an additional message?
I'll tell her.
Dear Bella, though age claims my bones, though this cell claims my life, though poisonous thoughts claim my sanity, my heart is eternally with you. - Love, Marlin.
A large pulse moves beneath the stone.
There is an ancient Aosdic circle with inscriptions of two rituals. Which rite will you perform?
Conjunction of The Flame & The Moon
The Flame will begin the ceremony by stepping into the circle.
Whom shall you perform the rite with? One of you will begin as the Flame and the other will be the Moon.
I will perform the rite with another Aisling
Will you follow as the Moon in the Conjunction of the Flame and the Moon with ___?
I will be the Moon.
At this holy moment Jealous Fire becomes nourishing blood...
...in soft moonlight.
As it is in divinity so is it in mortality. Fire's last breath...
So may it be for Marlin & Bella.
So may it be for all Aislings.
I had another dream of Bella. She was close to me, smiling. You told her. Even though you never saw her directly, you met her. I know I'll meet her again soon, too. You've given me vision, Aisling.