If you're arriving at a low level, you're likely to have to do a lot of running around being chased by Dragonel swarms and brutish outlanders, who will all try to kill you on sight. (On that note, if two groups of pursuing foes lose sight of you, they may also turn on each other and start fighting, unless you use stealth so they never end up trespassing on each other's turf.)
|A mage casting the Sparkling Wonder spell to cause hostile brigands to temporarily retreat.|
If you want to aid farmer Anwick with the Dragonel infestation that destroyed his sheep, you can find the hive in a grove of trees in the northwest part of the map. It's possible to blow up the nest without killing any dragonels, but is very time consuming at a low level with only a modest firedart spell.
Solving "A Letter From Wendy":
The house of Ruel (Wendy's brother) is in the woods in the northeastern part of this map. The outlanders also have a camp in the eastern part of the map at the edge of a crescent-shaped grove southeast of Ruel's house, which you can loot and then run away from if you're up for the run-around, or deal with more easily later with more spells or improved stealth skills.
To solve Wendy's quest, you'll have to return to her house in Eastwillow and deliver the bad news about her brother's death, but you'll receive 300 xp for your efforts.
The Bronze Riddle & Secret Room
There is another dark but intriguing twist to this story, however: Inside Ruel's house in the rear room, you'll find an inactive teleportation pentacle with a plaque above it, inscribed with a riddle involving bronze. The way to solve it is to return and fully equip yourself with bronze gear (e.g. a bronze helmet, armor, gauntlets, leggings, and even bronze boots) and step onto the teleport. (Since merchant stock varies, you'll probably have to keep an eye out and come back here after checking quite a few blacksmith/armorer shops in various towns to find one of each type of bronze armor.) When you step onto the plate, it will teleport you into the interior chamber with no door, where you'll find two treasure chests, one of them containing several hundred gold coins and a book called "The Orakur: Of Fact & Fiction."
However, you can avoid Wendy's hostility altogether and instead just take the book all the way to Port Kuudad's Lockston Hall, where you can give it to Saint Gilhelm. Saint Gilhelm will then ask you to take the book to the desk of the Hall's mythology scholar, ultimately earning 1,250 experience points for this.
|Bringing Ruel's book to Saint Gilhelm at the Lockston Academy in Port Kuudad|
The Central Farrock Range & The Farrock Monolith
Since you'll have to travel back to the Southern Kessian Basin to return to Ruel's House to eventually solve the bronze riddle, it's probably a good idea to make a short trip to a monolith that will enable you to quick-travel back to a nearby place: To do this, head northeast a fairly short distance past the forest and travel north to the Central Farrock Range.
|The Farrock Monolith|
The Farrock Caves (South Entrance)
You don't have to brave the caves if you're not ready, but using the Monolith will also enable you to travel quickly back to the southern cave mouth. (See FARROCK CAVES for other details).
|Entrance to the Farrock Caves from the southern side of the range.|
|This lever beyond the electrical trap can be thrown by throwing a rock or casting Firedart.|
|This gate connecting the tunnels to the southern and northern cave entrances can only be opened from the south side.|
|Lair of Jawbreaker the Blacksmith in the Farrock Caves|
If you were up for hauling a large number of powder kegs to this area, there is a secret chest you could find behind a blocked but easily visible rocky chasm along the central/western mountainside. Hauling 4-5 black powder kegs back here is a bit of a chore, but if you do it you'll be able to blow through the rocks to a chest with a stash of fifteen throwing weapons called "Doom Stars."
Also optionally, if you exited the map to the east of the Monolith, you'd find an abandoned house full of Outlanders, with several chests you could raid after using your choice of the usual pacifist run tactics of stealth, invisibility, haste, nonlethal spells, etc. (You'd also notice a river flowing out of the Farrock range here, but the only way we remember to get to the other side is by making a long trip through the Farrock Caves. See the other section on the FARROCK CAVES if you want to try it early.)