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"Do you really wish to know?"
Spoilers from the books and/or games to follow!
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It is easy to kill with a bow, girl. How easy it is to release the bowstring and think, it is not I, not I, it is the arrow. The blood of that boy is not on my hands. The arrow killed him, not I. But the arrow does not dream anything in the night. May you dream nothing in the night either, blue-eyed dryad.
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- Geralt to Braenn, p. 293-4 from Sword of Destiny (U.S. edition)
Braenn was a human girl who was raised as a dryad in the Brokilon forest.

Biography Edit

When Braenn was roughly 9-10 years old, she somehow wound up in Brokilon and, as was the dryads' custom, they took her in and had her drink the Water of Brokilon which erased all her previous memories and proceeded to raise her as a dryad.

Meeting Geralt Edit

In 1262, when she was no more than 16 years old, a group of men were racing through the forest when they were shot at by Braenn's group. Braenn herself ended up killing Voymir's esquire, a young male around 15 years old. A short time later near the same spot, Geralt entered the forest as King Venzlav's envoy to try and deliver a message to the dryad queen, Eithné, but was given a warning shot by the dryads. After conversing with the dryad leader of the unit, the leader called for Braenn and Dunca to come out while the first continued to question Geralt. Braenn picked up Geralt's sword that he'd tossed on the ground but gave it back when the leader told Braenn to take the witcher to Duén Canell to meet Eithné.

Being too young to know what a witcher was, Braenn initially tried to outpace Geralt, hoping he'd get stuck or collapse from exhaustion. However, she started to wear herself out and realizing Geralt was able to keep up with her, relented and slowed down and asked if he was an elf. After informing her he wasn't, and having picked up on cues that she didn't have a drop of dryad blood in her, the witcher asked Braenn what her name was before she was turned but she stated she didn't remember.

She continued to guide Geralt through the treacherous forest, having learned it well enough to know where it was safe to cross and where to be extremely cautious. Despite the pace though, Duén Canell was still far enough away that the two had to stop and sleep for the night and, as is dryad custom, she hugged Geralt as they slept to keep warm.

Finding a princess Edit

The next day, as she and Geralt continued to travel through the forest, they heard a scream. Braenn immediately armed her bow, ready to shoot, but Geralt cried out not to as he ran into the brush to find a young girl under attack by a giant centipede. Geralt went in close to attack it to keep it from getting to the girl, but ended up being disarmed by the centipede and pinned down. Just as it moved in to strike, Braenn started to fire arrows, piercing the creature's armor and pinning it to a nearby stump. While the creature would snap one off, another immediately pinned it again, distracting it long enough for Geralt to retrieve his sword and finish it.

However, when the witcher thanked her for saving him, she appeared indifferent to this before retrieving the hiding girl, who Geralt concluded was the missing princess, before she took off into the forest. Braenn released an arrow that just skimmed the child's hair before thudding into a tree trunk, making her drop to the ground. When Geralt rounded on the dryad, asking why she fired on a child, Braenn emotionlessly replied "what of it?" After grabbing the princess and talking to her, Geralt learned she'd ran away from Verden and tried to change his plans to take her back, knowing that the dryads would otherwise try to transform her into one of them. However, this backfired as the girl didn't want to go back to Prince Kistrin and stuck with Braenn, with the dryad telling the witcher he could go back alone but he wouldn't make it very far by himself. Relenting, Geralt continued to travel with Braenn and they soon learned the girl's name was Ciri. Eventually though, it grew dark again so the group stopped for another night to rest.

As the group laid down to rest, Braenn made a note that Ciri was "robust, healthy, and stout" and she'd be very useful to the dryads, making it clear that Eithné would transform the girl into one of them. After Ciri insisted Geralt tell her a bedtime story, he began to tell her with Braenn laying down on his other side, listening with fascination as well. When Geralt finished, Ciri wondered what the moral of the story was, with Braenn asking what a "moral" even was.

The next day, the group reached a point past the Trees where Braenn had to blindfold Geralt, a necessary act to prevent outsiders from knowing how to get to Duén Canell, and said she'd lead him by the hand the rest of the way. However, Ciri insisted that she lead him instead and the group eventually reached Duén Canell. On the edge of the capital, another dryad, Sirssa, greeted Braenn and the two conversed in Elder Speech, with Sirssa asking about Geralt but Braenn informed her he was a witcher, making Sirssa proclaim he wasn't any use to them then. Braenn then led Geralt and Ciri to one of the small huts and bade them goodbye. Shortly after, she returned to the hut to take Ciri with her so Geralt could talk to Eithné and the dryads could transform Ciri.

The Water of Brokilon Edit

Later that night, Braenn was sent to retrieve the Water of Brokilon to use on Ciri and entered while Geralt and Eithné discussed the future and destiny of Brokilon and the dryads, causing some emotion to stir in Braenn. After getting his answer for Venzlav, Geralt told Braenn goodbye but warned her it was far too easy to blame an arrow for taking someone's life than herself and hoped she wouldn't be plagued by nightmares of doing so. This caused her to suddenly cry out that her real name was Mona, revealing that the waters didn't entirely erase her memories.

After being told to get a hold of herself by Eithné, the queen then took the goblet from her and had Ciri drink from it, with Braenn silently crying as she watched. However, Ciri showed no signs of the water working on her and when questioned who did she want to go with, she still proclaimed she wished to go with Geralt, making Braenn sigh with relief.

Later on, after Geralt was able to leave with Ciri, the two came under attack by a group of Verdenian mercenaries. After Geralt dealt with the skilled killer amongst them and turned to the one named Junghans, the man tried to rally the rest against the witcher but one of Braenn's arrows suddenly struck and killed the mercenary before more arrows flew through the air from other dryads, killing all the mercenaries as they tried to escape. The druid, Mousesack, then made his presence known and bade farewell to the dryads who disappeared once more into the forest, with Braenn remaining behind to bid Geralt farewell. When the witcher proclaimed he wouldn't forget Mona, she firmly told him to forget Mona, she was Braenn of Brokilon, before disappearing into the forest with the rest.

Notes Edit

  • In the non-canon short story Something Ends, Something Begins, she married Freixenet after a time and they go on to have at least five daughters: Morenn, Cirilla, Mona, Eithné, and Kashka. She and Freixenet are both among the guests at Geralt and Yennefer's wedding.

References Edit

  1. Geralt estimated she couldn't have been any older than 16 when they met in 1262.

External links Edit

  • Gwent icon See the GWENT standalone game version card: Braenn