Miniature of the Month: Kethalas the Elf

by Allen Stroud

Miniature of the Month: Kethalas the Elf
September 29, 2019 Allen Stroud

I have come here to this dark underground place to oppose the evil that lurks here. My woodland home is far away.

The land has a rhythm, a balance that must be preserved. As elves of the forest, our part in that balance is to be caretakers and guardians for all life that grows amidst the brush and scrub. Animals live and die, they are hunters and hunted, predators and prey, that is part of the way of things. Our place is not to intervene. 

But the Elders have sensed an evil here, lurking in the depths of the world. They have sent me and my hunter kin brethren to oppose it. Two days ago we descended into the darkness of this subterranean world.

These passageways are man-wrought, part of a great fortification built upon this land many years ago to subjugate it. In those ancient days, we mustered our strength and fought the humans, until they were forced to abandon their designs. Their stone keep was left as a monument to folly, until the tunnels beneath it were taken by corruption. 

I do not know what lives here, but it is a blight upon all things living above. Root and branch has sickened since this land became afflicted. We hunters must come here and root out this evil so the sickness can be cured. 

We left our people two days ago, journeying by day and night by ways known only to us. There are doorways and magic passages made by our kind long ago, before humans came to this world. We spoke with the trees and the wind, obtaining their aid in our quest.

Five of us entered this decaying stone kingdom. At first, all was quiet and we walked together through ruins, picking our way over rockfalls and down rough-hewn stairs into the bones of the world. Within hours, daylight became a mere memory to us. The darkness became everything, seeping into our blood and bones.

When flames sprang up from the darkness and orcs attacked, we were caught by surprise. Feral faces with bloodshot eyes surged towards me, their rusted blades hacking and slashing in the narrow alleyways, seeking to maim and kill both me and my companions — leaving us to die in the gloom, far from sunlight and the green warmth of home. 

The fighting was brief and vicious. With knife and spear I drove them from me, but lost touch with my kin. The flickering firelight and the echoes and screams of war disappeared into the tunnels, until silence fell once more. I was left alone in silence and shadow.

Now, I journey onwards, into the deeper dark. I shall try to find my hunter brethren, but if they are lost, then I must continue. The evil that lives beneath our woodland realm must be opposed. Remember me if I am lost, for all brave deeds should become memories in story and in song.

A Grenadier cast from the late 1980s and early 1990s, this lead figure came as part of a group of four ordered from eBay back in 2015 or 2016. I’ve always been a fan of the Grenadier castings from that period and, despite their age, this little group of elves really holds up well alongside modern plastics, white metal, and resin. The moulds were eventually bought by Mirliton, and you can still purchase some of the old figures as new from them.

The elves of this group are part of my tabletop roleplaying games collection rather than being used as part of an army. That means Kethalas gets displayed in a woodland scene or goes in the adventurer’s box, just in case someone wants to play an elf in a fantasy roleplaying game campaign.

If you are looking for good rare models, doing a search on eBay for ‘Grenadier Miniatures’ always means you’ll find a rare treat.