"Welcome to the Blue Dragon Emporium... home of magical goods and services...and potions." ~Willow
Willow "Greyscale" is a young female human mage in training, who is currently studying in Alivast, specifically under the tutelage of Artimus. She had a job at the Blue Dragon Emporium selling magical items before becoming the Sweet Dragon's full-time Arcanist.
She first encountered The Unexpectables while getting mugged in an alley by a random highwayman. The group came to her rescue by beating the living daylights out of her assailant until he relented. As the assailant fled, Willow clocked him in face, causing him to fall unconscious.
Before the Unexpectables hired her, Willow lived in a tiny one-room apartment above a roast duck stall in the Lower General District of Alivast. It had a small wood stove-top, a water basin, chamber pot, small window, and a simple bed.
Willow is originally from Eltmur. Though she has some fond memories of her home there, notably of apple trees and gardens, she is glad to be in a place where she can pursue studying magic. Her goal is to open her own magic shop and is going through the process to become licensed to sell magic items. Apparently the only thing hampering currently are some issues with her last name.
Recent events have pointed to there being more to Willow than met the eye when she was abducted from her tower by what appeared to be The Silver King. A note to Doros found in the wreckage implied a dark secret.
|Serious Spoilers - Episode 61/Podcast 49|
|Princess Elizabeth Eltmur (her original name) is the last surviving member of the Eltmur royal family and had been fleeing the Silver King since the fall of the kingdom. She had actually orchestrated the destruction of Etmur and deaths of her family by slipping documents into a strategy meeting that suggested going through the Silver King's territory to attack a neighboring country setting Eltmur on a collision course with the ancient dragon. She then warned the Silver King of her family's treacherous intent (which she herself had encouraged) and made a deal with him to rule Eltmur as his queen - a deal she never intended to keep.
She was the 2nd eldest of four children and had a sister and two brothers, all of whom are dead - killed by the Silver King along with the rest of her family.
She successfully avoided the Silver King for several years before he finally caught up to her in Alivast, and only then because she decided to stop running due to her love for Doros and friendship with The Unexpectables.
After the encounter with the Silver King, Panic Grimtongue gave her a week's paid vacation to recover from the ordeal, which she would use to go on a carriage tour with her boyfriend. In the time the Unexpectables were out at sea, she broke her wrist. Totally by accident, and definitely not as a side effect of getting some alone time with her boyfriend, no-siree. With the Sweet Dragon closed during the excavation of the Chamber of Oakenlock, she went on a mountain-climbing hike with Doros which was part of a marriage proposal in Avan tradition.
Willow achieved her dream of opening her own magic shop which operates out of the arcanum attached to the Sweet Dragon. Willow's Wonders is just starting out, so her selection of goods is only potions and scrolls that she crafts herself, but as she becomes more established may grow to include other items. She gives The Unexpectables a substantial discount on her goods compared to the greatly inflated Alivastian market rates.
Willow is a sweet and kind young woman, though she occasionally appears to be overly idealistic, oblivious or naive, as she often seems to take what she is told at face value. Her excitable nature also sometimes causes her to act before thinking through the possible consequences of what she does.
She has a deep interest in potion making and magical items, though she dislikes harmful magic such as necromancy, and outright fears items of obvious evil energy, like Gripples. Her dream since childhood has been to open up a magic shop.
She kept secrets from her employers and her boyfriend and was very concerned about their safety if the truth got out.
|Serious Spoilers - Episode 61/Podcast 49|
|"When Eltmur was invading Valithea and other neighboring countries, I knew I had to stop my family... and like them, by any means necessary." ~ Willow
When the party found her at the peak of Everbright Mountain, they learned that Willow (real name Princess Elizabeth Eltmur) was not the helpless, hapless victim they assumed she was. She revealed that she is extremely cunning and politically savvy, capable of masterminding the downfall of a kingdom and she has the ability to deceive and manipulate others (including an ancient Silver Dragon) to achieve her own ends. She was desperate enough to orchestrate the death of her family, including siblings to achieve her goal of Eltmur's total destruction. She is not without morality however, and is very aware of how her own family and the Silver King suffered due to her actions, and has wrestled with that guilt for years. Most of all, she desperately pines to escape the life and title of Princess Elizabeth Eltmur and simply live on as Willow.
She desperately wished for the old Eltmur kingdom to be dead and gone, and even considered her own death as a means to prevent any semblance of the old regime returning when she was faced with the possibility that she might have to take the throne. She did this out of a belief that she could be just as ruthless as her own family.
She still desires to study magic, as the art was forbidden to her in Eltmur, even as royalty.
Willow has opened up more to her employers and friends, but she is still very shy and embarrassed talking about some details of her love life. She has had another boyfriend in the past. She also has avoided Alivast politics because she is not interested in that environment and feels there is a conflict with her current boyfriend's position as a Guard Captain.
|Spoilers - Post Episode 61/Podcast 49|
|The only people aware of Willow's true identity are the Silver King, Panic, Task, Borky, Greckles, Remy, Bright, and Doros.|
Until his death he was a professor at the school she attends and learns about more general magic. Willow very much admires successful wizards like him.
"Every place is different and has good, just like home." ~ Willow to Greckles
Willow became concerned about Greckles when he was grieving over his lost family and distance from home. She shared with him her own experience feeling lonely and homesick, and encouraged him to take more enjoyment in where he lives now. To cheer him up, she took him to a restaurant run by kenku from the Eastern Isles that serves food that reminds Greckles of home, and made the promise to take him to a restaurant that served food from her own home country.
Willow is particularly affectionate towards Panic and hopes that some day he will find a nice lady to be with. On their first meeting, she gifted him with a magic ring which can hold a single spell, countering that specific spell once before requiring reattunement. She also gave him a ticket for a free cake for two from a local bakery when he first visited her at the Blue Dragon Emporium.
She thinks that "Grimtongue" is a "bad-ass" name. She was also the only person (as of Episode 28/Podcast 16) Panic had told his real name. Panic has acted as a bit of a confidant to Willow for relationship issues and despite her immense embarrassment concerning the issue, he has offered to share information about intimate relationships with goliaths with her.
Willow is friends with Rivi, and has been for some time. The two caught up during the Alivast Festival.
When Willow was taken into custody during the investigation of Artimus' death, Doros was her guard. He couldn't help but notice how distraught she was over her imprisonment and got some playing cards from Borf and played games with her through the bars to get her to stop crying. When the jail collapsed during Dulmar's rampage, Doros shielded her from harm with his own body, acting as a living brace to prevent her from being crushed by rubble. At some point during the day and night together in the jail, Willow told him that he was "so nice" and that sparked something in his heart.
He began frequenting the shop where Willow worked and had her show him all the new magic items. She was able to sell a magical fish to him that they now take for walks together. With Task's help, Doros was able to initiate a discussion with her and ask her out to Dolly's Pastries where he had a 2 for 1 coupon. The truth was that when Doros asked her out, Willow was quite literally too scared to refuse. The pair have gone on several dates, and now that Willow works at the Sweet Dragon she has given Doros a spare key to her tower and had Adric's crew build a goliath-sized chair for him when he visits.
Willow has met Doros' mother, Corner, and was a little upset and embarrassed that she expressed her desire for Doros to date a kobold for cultural reasons or a goliath for... reasons. Doros is madly in love with Willow as evidenced by the passionate love letters he has written her. (See adjacent gallery.)
Recently it was revealed that Willow and Doros had their first fight. The argument centered around whether she would accompany Doros to the Silver King's ball, though she did not explain her reasons at the time. Willow later wrote Doros a letter indicating that things were ok again.
She left a letter to Doros that was found in the wreckage of her tower after she was abducted. The letter revealed she had been hiding some secrets about her past, but also unequivocally stated her love for Doros.
Willow has taken on the last name "Greyscale" as a matter of legal convenience when she needed a surname for some paperwork. The Silver King apparently provided the name much to the couple's chagrin. Despite sharing the name with Doros, she expressed it was still too soon to consider marriage. By the Summer however, she appeared much more willing, and accepted when Doros proposed during a hike up a mountain. They were married in the 2nd spring after the Unexpectables arrived in Alivast.
Though Willow has not spoken at length regarding her family, what little information that has risen points to a poor relationship with her parents. Once, in response to being told that her mother was a good teacher, Willow responded by saying "That's about all she was." She has politely refused to share her last name and has expressed discomfort being associated with her family.
|Episode 61/Podcast 49 Spoilers|
|Willow was the 2nd eldest of the Eltmur royal family. She had an older sister and two younger brothers. She hated her family for the evil they perpetrated on the country and its neighbors.
Willow's family were all killed by the Silver King, and she is wracked with guilt over this, but feels it was necessary to put an end to the royal line completely.
While she was on the run from the Silver King, she spread the rumor that it wasn't herself that escaped, but one of her brothers. She hoped this would throw the Silver King off her trail. This rumor was believed by Eltmur Royalists who had the false hope of restoring the old monarchy. The Silver King used this rumor to his benefit and claimed that he was warned by a "prince" about the assassination plot because he wanted to prevent others from finding Willow before he did.
Willow pet-sat Tarusk when Task disappeared during the eclipse. He stayed in her apartment and took up about half of the space. He also defended Willow when she was attacked and was greatly rewarded by Doros for this with treats and a trip to the pet spa.
"No matter what the rules are, when you play by by someone else's rules usually you're set up to fail. But, we can make our own rules sometimes." ~ Willow to Remy
Willow noticed Remy was from Valithea when she saw his family crest. Unfortunately, she touched a nerve when mentioning the political situation in Eltmur and Remy became agitated. She excused herself before he calmed down so he wasn't able to apologize for his sharp tongue. During the long winter of the Unexpectables first year in Alivast, Remy and Willow spent time together. Remy felt he needed answers from her about her actions in Eltmur and Willow expressed a deep grief and regret that he accepted. They have bonded due to similar stations in life, and since they're both from the Alton region. During their time together, Willow had Remy help her test out some new spells, including Catapult which she had developed based off of old spellbooks the party had found. Remy often comes to Willow because he feels he has a good rapport with her and she encourages him to do what he feels is right even when it conflicts with his code of honor.
Willow has been spending time with Remy's mother who has been helping her through the process of getting her license to sell magic items. He has also suggested Willow talk to his sister because enchanting is her specialty.
Bright is Willow's Barchoba familiar which she obtained after the destruction of the War Mage's Vengeance. Though Barchoba are powerful magical creatures, Willow has so far tasked him with simple jobs like carrying objects for her. Bright and Willow have forged a psychic link that allows them to access each others thoughts and memories. Thanks to this link, Bright was able to find Willow atop Everbright Mountain and lead her friends to her.
The Silver King abducted Willow and carried her to the peak of Everbright Mountain for unknown reasons. He later sent three of his children as proxies to challenge Willow's wedding to Doros who he regards as a poor match for her.
|Serious Spoilers - Episode 61/Podcast 49|
|"I'll get down to the bottom line, Elizabeth... I don't WANT to be king! Can you just PLEASE take this away from me!" ~ Swarrow (The Silver King)
Willow orchestrated Eltmur's encounter with the Silver King, and when he was in the capital, the "prince" that warned him of the assassination plot was Willow (the lie about gender was created by Willow but used by the Silver King). The two made the deal that the Silver King would destroy the leaders of Eltmur and Willow would then assume the throne as his bride. Much to the dragon's chagrin, Willow escaped, never intending to fill her part of the bargain and lived a life on the run for several years with the Silver King in pursuit. When he finally caught up to her in Alivast, he wished to have a serious conversation about her taking the throne so he could hand off leadership. Willow's protective wards canceled out his polymorph, which caused the destruction of her tower as he was forced from humaniod to draconic form. Wanting to merely have a private conversation and instead ending up surprised and annoyed, the Silver King flew her to the top of Everbright Mountain where she escaped from him and hid in icy caves until the arrival of The Unexpectables. Once the Silver King realized that Willow was terrified of being bound to the throne of Eltmur he was willing to consider solutions outside their original bargain. An agreement was reached to declare "Elizabeth, Princess of Eltmur" dead so that Willow could quietly live out her life in Alivast with her friends and the man she loves.
From their perspective Willow is just from an old bloodline that their father interacted with at some point in the past. Nobody special.
Willow finds Jerry to be a fascinating individual and tough chess opponent (due to his ability read thoughts.) The two of them played twenty games of chess, all apparently without playing exactly by the rules.
- She took the Infernal Codex that Panic found and loaned it to a friend named Mary to research.
- Without her spellbook, she cannot cast spells.
- Willow hates the Ebony Penguin (Gripples), apparently afraid of it and was willing to sell it for a relatively low price.
- Since meeting The Unexpectables, Willow has nearly died
twice three four five six seven EIGHTNINE times.
- The First Time was when she was mugged and first met The Unexpectables
- The Second Time was when The Cabbage reacted violently to her Identify spell and exploded in the Blue Dragon Emporium.
- The Third Time was when she was nearly crushed when Dullmar collapsed the building she was in. She was saved by her guard, Doros.
- The Fourth Time was when she was attacked by a man using necrotic magic when the guys were out of town and travelling back from Balfor Balton's war camp. She was saved by Tarusk.
- The Fifth Time she succumbed to damage when Panic sang a cursed infernal song.
- The Sixth time she was nearly killed by the party's attacks and spells when she was possessed by a Somalisk. This episode prompted her to trap her arcanium with a sleep magic trap on the door.
- The Seventh Time she nearly froze to death on the top of Everbright Mountain
- The Eighth Time a demon threw her at Borky.
- The 9th Time was when she was testing a potion of Levitate and Greckles used his Wind Fan to try to save her, but ended up making her crack her head on the porch roof of the Sweet Dragon.
- Willow was a frog for a while after a mishap making a potion from the tooth of a frog monster. This experiment may be tied to the anti-polymorph spell she put on her arcanium.
- Due to the teasing of his fellow Unexpectables, Willow once believed that Panic had a boyfriend, and suggested that they go on a double date with herself and Doros.
- Willow has three pairs of clothes. A nightgown, Work clothes and a somewhat nice dress. 5 small books on magic, her component pouch and her spell book.
- Willow appears to have a strained relationship with her parents, as seen through her interactions with Panic. When she admits her mother taught her how to dance, Panic remarks that she must have been a good teacher, to which she replies that was "all she was." Later, she also revealed to Panic that she abandoned her family name, stating it was "better this way." Legally, she has no last name.
- When Greckles teased her by instructing that she not sleep with Doros in the Sweet Dragon's Arcanium, she became flustered and "pushed them out."
- Willow is a pure cinnamon bun and did not know what the Romansion was when the party first mentioned it. This has changed since she has gotten an educational pamphlet from there on Goliaths, complete with a hand-written note from Zeus offering his services to provide additional info.
- Willow did go to the Romansion with Doros for an in-town honeymoon.
- Willow scolded Task for not trimming Tarrusk's nails, which could lead to joint problems. However, she didn't seem to object to Doros feeding the drake cakes, which caused him to gain a substantial amount of weight.
- Willow's old apartment in the Lower General District didn't have a lock on the door, which concerned Doros greatly.
- Willow has seen operas before, just not in Alivast.
- Despite being a woman from Eltmur, she knew how to read before coming to Alivast. It is unknown if this was due to her learning in secret, or exemption from the rules against women's literacy.
- Willow's mother kept large, extravagant birds like peacocks, parrots, and golden pheasants. Willow hated them, but still helped care for them, nonetheless.
- Willow prefers fuzzy animals, and if she had a familiar other than Bright it would be something like a cat or stoat.
- Willow has disadvantage on insight checks, but gets a +10 on any intelligence check involving strategy.
- Willow has special labels for her potions with a chibi illustration of her face on them. Her healing potions taste mildly like cherry-flavored children's cough syrup which is actually an improvement over standard potions that have a much stronger taste.
- Willow wants to open her own potion shop someday
- Inspired by her daughter, Wiki Admin Chehalem floated her theory of Willow's secret past at least as early as December 29, 2017 when she wrote a fanfic centered on it. She won't shut up about it now that her theory was proven correct.
- Willow used a hellhound core to create a trinket of Continual Flame for Panic.
- She has a friend who is a female tiefling that knows about infernal magics who helped her make Task's Crown Devil Helm.
- She is EXTREMELY good at chess and beats the Silver King 7 games in a row when she's sick with a bad cold.
- Her favorite food is asparagus stuffed chicken breast.
- Doros broke her hand when he fell on her. He felt really bad about that.
- As of Episode 138 / Podcast 125, Willow was level 7 and she can craft scrolls for the party based off her spells. Her available spells were listed as:
- Cantrips: firebolt, mage hand, prestidigitation, shocking grasp
- 1st Level: catapult, find familiar, identify, magic missile, shield, unseen servant
- 2nd Level: arcane lock, darkvision, enlarge/reduce, hold person, levitate
- 3rd Level: dispel magic, fireball, fly, water breathing
- 4th Level: Mordenkainen's faithful hound, polymorph