Kellan And Ruby Face Hylda, Learn Truth Of The Wicked Slumber In Wilds Of Eldraine Episode 4

Kellan harnesses his magic as he completes Step 2 of his quest

Illustrated by Fajareka Setiwan

The fourth chapter of the Wilds of Eldraine story follows Kellan and Ruby after learning the whereabouts of Hylda, the witch.

Episode 4: Ruby and the Frozen Heart picks up after Kellan and Ruby return to Edgewall after their adventure in the clouds as they reunite with Peter for some fresh food and new linens to brave the cold weather of Loch Larent. Loaded for a week’s journey to the castle, they take off for the next step on Kellan’s quest. Peter guides them to within a day’s trek from the castle and makes camp, still recovering from previous injuries. All ready fighting the cold, Kellan and Ruby march on toward the giant castle despite a woman’s voice warning them to turn back.

Kellan and Ruby continue on, but receive multiple follow-up warnings, from what turns out to be voice of Hylda. Hylda summons two giant frost knights that attack them, one knocking Kellan down and the other picking Ruby and putting a sword to her throat. Armed with only the basket hilts that Lord Talion gave him as he began his quest, Kellan tries once again to figure out how to use them in a fight.

Illustrated by Leanna Crossan

As an ice warrior readies a blow, Kellan digs deep and begs his dad for help. Suddenly the hilts produce light-like swords and he takes out one of the knight’s arm in a single slice. He takes off the arm of the knight holding Ruby and catches her as she falls. Ruby applauds him for finally harnessing his Fae powers. Despite fending off the ice warriors, Kellan rapidly becomes very tired and weak. He falls asleep and Ruby manages to catch the unconscious would-be hero.

Ruby considers turning back and attempting to get Kellan back to warmth and safety, but not after how far they have come. She continues on, carrying Kellan through the brutal cold and winds sent by Hylda, who keeps telling her to leave the loch. They reach the drawbridge to the castle and Ruby can see mounds of snow-covered corpses that are frozen over multiple times. Ruby struggles through the first third of the bridge, but her progress slows as the cold and snow is too much. She begins to crawl, pulling Kellan with her as Hylda threatens her. Hylda, perplexed that Ruby continues risking their lives to reach the castle, asks her why she won’t give up. Ruby tells her doing what is right is worth risking their lives. Defeating Hylda in an attempt to save the people in the Wicked Slumber is worth their lives.

Ruby’s crawl slows to a halt and once she can go no further, Hylda’s hand reaches out for Ruby’s in the snow. The witch tells her she means no harm, then controls the weather to reduce the blizzard-like conditions to a light snowfall. Hylda kisses Ruby and Kellan on the forehead, putting them to sleep, and welcomes them to Winter’s Home. Before Ruby drifts off, Hylda tells her she will explain everything when they wake up.

Illustrated by Miranda Meeks

When Kellan and Ruby break their slumber they are draped in warm blankets and have a platter of hot food and drink waiting for them to fill their bellies. They are still skeptical of Hylda, so the witch offers them her crown and information. The crown reduces Hylda’s power as the weather breaks outside the castle, allowing the sun to shine through and begin melting the ice. She says to show it to Lord Talion as proof that they defeated her. The piece of info she supplies them, however, is a bit more off-putting.

Hylda tells them that the Wicked Slumber wasn’t just the doing of three witches, but Lord Talion approved and provided the extra help to cast the spell. The spell was only meant to put the invaders to sleep, but Eriette allowed it to spiral out of control and spread to the citizens of Eldraine. Hylda believes Eriette did this on purpose. The witch makes sure that Kellan knows the truth that his quest is being given by one of the sources of the Wicked Slumber.

Kellan and Ruby leave the castle walls and go through an ethereal arch to make their way back to the world of the Fae and confront Lord Talion. Kellan throws Hylda’s crown at Lord Talion’s feet and accuses them of lying. Kellan doubts they even know his father. But Lord Talion explains that Fae can’t lie, and that the quest is still noble despite its giver. Lord Talion reiterates that they know Kellan’s father and will tell him about him when he completes the quest of defeating Eriette at Castel Ardenvale. Not only would Kellan be able to lift the Wicked Slumber, but Lord Talion would tell him about his father.

Lord Talion closes by giving Kellan the option of giving up and never knowing the truth of his father, or continuing on to know and embrace his heritage while saving the people of Eldraine. When Kellan and Ruby return to the outskirts of the castle at Loch Larent, Kellan breaks down crying.

Read the full story for Episode 4: Ruby and the Frozen Heart here.