War of the Burning Sands
Emerging from the desert, racing like a hot, destroying wind across the dunes, voicing high, ululating war-cries few things in the desert are more terrifying than the Swiftwing tribe of elves on the attack. Their raids are notorious throughout the Tablelands; in combat they have few equals.
The Swiftwings are the essence of a desert tribe—fast, cunning, and deadly. They are feared and respected by the traders who travel across the wastes of the Tablelands between Tyr and Urik, and they are the scourge of other elven tribes as well. But the Swiftwings have another side, almost as well known. When not raiding or fighting other tribes, they find time to trade. Although the Swiftwings are a source of many normally forbidden goods—books, spell components, writing supplies, enchanted items, and so on—the average Athasian should be on guard.
Vulga Rani was by far the most renowned of the elven chiefs of the Swiftwings, bringing great wealth to the tribe through his brilliantly planned tactical raids, which were said to arrive like a sudden sandstorm and disappear just as quickly back into the wastes. He seemed to hold a special grudge against House Stel—some months, hardly a single caravan made it through the Tablelands without being accosted by the his raiders. Years ago he disappeared, abducted and locked away by Andropinis of Balic to serve as a living reservoir of knowledge about the desert whenever it was needed. Vulga’s sister, Yarma Rani, ascended to the position of Swiftwing chief in his absence and has been hard at work to be as successful as, and many times more brutal than, her brother.