The Eternal Ice

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The Eternal Ice
The Eternal Ice.jpg
Publishing Information
Author(s) Jeff Grubb
First printing May 2000
ISBN-13 978-0786915620
Preceded By
The Gathering Dark
Followed By
The Shattered Alliance

The Eternal Ice is the second novel of the Ice Age Cycle, continuing the story that began in The Gathering Dark and will conclude in The Shattered Alliance.

It was written by Jeff Grubb and published in May 2000.

Blurb[edit | edit source]

After the darkness comes the ice.

Thousands of years after the explosion at Argoth that ended the Brothers' War, ice has covered the world of Dominaria. The strong have turned to barbarism. The weak have died. Now Lim-Dûl, a necromancer with a taste for power, seeks to awaken a deeper evil.

Plot[edit | edit source]

The Sylex Blast has sent Dominaria into an Ice Age.

The necromancer Lim-Dûl sends his minions to fight the ice kingdom of Kjeld and the barbarians of Balduvia, while planeswalkers speak of a disaster far greater than an ice age that spans across all planes.

Amidst all this the immortal wizard Jodah must try to bring everything to a good end, unaware that he is about to be confronted by an old enemy.

Summary[edit | edit source]

In the prologue, we find the lowly Kjeldoran soldier Lim-Dûl trapped in a blizzard. He manages to stumble into a small cave, where he finds a strange, powerful ring.

Then the story skips ahead a few decades. Jodah awakens at Dûl's citadel, Tresserhorn. The necromancer tells him he's a summoned copy of the original Jodah, which is why his memory is so hazy, and that if he does not obey Dûl he will be unsummoned back to oblivion. Jodah agrees to do his bidding and is set to work on researching a rogue plane and on ways to kill a planeswalker. During the weeks he spends in Tresserhorn he meets Márton Stromgald, the general who sent Lim-Dûl on the journey that ended in the blizzard from the prologue. Stromgald has been zombified and tells Jodah that Dûl only summons those he hates the most, to punish them.

One day, after bringing his daily report, Jodah lingers in Dûl's throne room and discovers why the necromancer would want to kill a 'walker: Leshrac has forced him into his service, hoping to use the rogue plane to escape from the Shard. Before Jodah's eyes, Leshrac mutates the necromancer by making him more animalistic and giving him horns.

Several days later Jodah is confronted by Jaya Ballard, an old friend who reveals that Jodah is not a summoned being but the real thing and that Lid-Dûl only manipulated him into thinking so by drugging him with Fyndhorn Pollen. The two escape from Tresserhorn, but while in one of the safehavens Jodah goes completely mad. Jaya summons the planeswalker Freyalise who reveals that Jodah goes mad about every century from all the pain of his eternal life. Thus he must undergo the Emotion Ritual to cleanses his memories of their emotional attachment. This time however, Jodah was kidnapped by Dûl before he could finish the ritual. The pollen clouding his memory kept him sane, but with that gone he's fast descending into madness. Freyalise knows what can cure him, but she wishes something in return.

After bargaining with Freyalise Jaya travels to Krov, where Gustha Ebbasdotter is keeping Jodah's Mirror. Jaya manages to steal the mirror and while doing so discovers that Gustha and her cousin Gerda Äagesdotter where the ones who sold Jodah out to the necromancer so they could become the leading mages of the continent themselves. With the help of her old friend Belenda Danisdotter Jaya escapes Krov and returns to the Balduvian encampment where she uses the mirror to cure Jodah. In exchange for their hospitality, the barbarians want Jodah's aid in defeating Lim-Dûl. Jodah says he can't help them on his own, but that he too thinks Dûl is a great threat that needs to be defeated. He and Jaya return to Krov to try to get King Darien to form an alliance with the Balduvians against Dûl.

When ariving in Krov, Gustha wants Jaya placed under arrest for breaking into her laboratory. Jodah agrees. Later that night Jodah frees Jaya, who is furious at him for doing this. Jodah excuses himself, she sort-of forgives him and sets out to learn more about the forces behind the throne. She discovers that although the refugees from the hinterlands say they are fleeing from the undead, most of the city folk think that the Balduvians are the real threat. Worse, she discovers that Avram Garrison, the highest military commander of the nation, is planning to overthrow king Darien. She warns the second in command, Varchild, as well as Jodah and Gustha, and they manage to foil the coup.

After it is revealed that the rebels, who call themselves the Knights of Stromgald, were being manipulated by Lim-Dûl, king Darien takes firm control over the nation. Still, many military commanders had turned to the Knights, whom Lim-Dûl zombified and called back to Tresserhorn. This finally convinces the people of Kjeldor that Dûl is the true enemy and allows the alliance with the Balduvians to be made. During all this, Arcum Dagsson reveals to Jodah that his weather-predicting machine claims that the Ice Age is worsening. Freyalise in the meantime arrives at the School of the Unseen and demands entrance. Jodah puts Gerda in charge, punishing her for her actions by giving her the job she had wanted all along.

After months of fighting, the final battle with Lim-Dûl draws near. The day before, Freyalise shows up in the encampment and demands the last payment for healing Jodah: to borrow his mirror. Jodah is not happy about it, but loans it to her nonetheless.

Then the great battle begins. Jaya fights and defeats Belenda Dannisdotter—now a zombie, and Chaeska, Lim-Dûl's most trusted lieutenant. Arvram Garrison, also a zombie, distracts Gustha long enough for the undead hordes to devour her, but is apparently killed himself by Varchild. Then, Jodah faces Lim-Dûl himself, but the necromancer reveals his last secret. The ring he picked up all those decades ago belonged to Jodah's ancient enemy Mairsil the Pretender and the being he now faces is a mixture of the two personalities. The fight is long and brutal, and eventually both are left exhausted and without spells. But before Jodah can strike him down, Lim-Dûl summons Leshrac. This doesn't work out as he had hoped however, for Leshrac is furious that Dûl squandered his legions on Kjeldor and Balduvia, while the planeswalker had wanted to use them to attack the rogue plane. Leshrac rips the necromancer to shreds, but keeps him alive during it all to feel the excruciating pain as punishment. He tosses away the hand that holds Mairsil's ring, but forms the rest of Dûl into a still-living ball of flesh and takes it to the rogue plane, saying that he'll reshape the necromancer there so that he may serve him once more.

Jodah is left at the battlefield, where the undead are dropping by the dozens now that their master is gone. But he can't rest long, for Freyalise invites him to come to Fyndhorn to witness her end the Ice Age. Once he arrives Jodah discovers Freyalise is planning to use the arrival of the rogue plane to create another Sylex Blast, like the one that created the Shard and the Ice Age, but in reverse. Jodah tells her the blast would devastate Dominaria, to which Freyalise replies that that is why he was invited. Freyalise wants one last favor of him: to use the safe havens to vent the blast to all corners of the continent, thus creating the same effect without as much destruction. Still the end of the Ice Age would cause great flooding, among other disasters, but Jodah has no choice but to cooperate.

After the World Spell is complete, Freyalise gives Jodah his mirror back and planeswalks away. Realizing that all the 'walkers are leaving and that the wizards are now the most powerful beings on the plane, Jodah and Jaya set out wondering what this new world has in store for them.

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