Aethyr (also known as Commander Aethyr) was a commander of Clearwater who led the evacuation efforts after the King of Clearwater died in battle. He remained at Clearwater until he was forcibly evacuated himself and taken to the Great Continent.
Aethyr warned Prince Haldric of the orcs' arrival at the Great Continent, and helped clear the coastline of enemies for remaining refugees to make a safe landing. He also volunteered to have a forged document on his person, such that in death, he tricked the orcs and undead into believing that Haldric had given the Ruby of Fire to the elves.
Evacuation of Clearwater
|Until then, let us make those orcs pay dearly for every inch of our land. For our homes, for our people, for our fallen king!|
|—Commander Aethyr prepares Clearwater Port's defenses.|
Aethyr was a lieutenant and commander of Clearwater, and had a wife and multiple daughters. When the King of Clearwater died in battle against the orcs, most of the port's nobles fled to Southbay, leaving Aethyr in charge of the garrison. Even Aethyr's family were killed. He ordered Clearwater's fishing fleet to evacuate its populace, while he and his men defended the port.
Only days before the port froze over, refugees from Stormvale, led by Prince Haldric, arrived at Clearwater, accompanied by Wesfolk. Aethyr introduced himself and explained their predicament. He told Haldric that, though the people of Stormvale were free to evacuate as soon as the first ship came in, they would benefit from Haldric's help in defending the port. Haldric agreed, and reassured Aethyr that the Wesfolk were their friends.
The port fell under siege from three orcish warlords, and Aethyr held out for as long as possible. Eventually, by the time the third ship came, Haldric and his refugees were forced to depart for Southbay by ship, leaving Aethyr and his remaining soldiers to defend what was left of the port. When the port was eventually overrun, he made his last defense in the lighthouse when one of Haldric's ships returned. One of his men hit him on the head and when he came to, he was at sea.
|Jevyan— I spit upon thee. Your end awaits. My love, my family, I’ll be there soo—|
|—Commander Aethyr is slain by the Lich-Lord Jevyan.|
Upon arriving at the Great Continent, Aethyr discovered that various enemy forces from the Green Isle had also arrived there as well. He found his way to Haldric in the Grey Woods, who had just received from the Ka'lian a vast region in which to establish his kingdom. He covertly informed Haldric of their enemies' decision to follow the refugees. They hastened westward to meet the vanguard of the enemy forces, composed of both orcs and undead.
Aethyr informed Haldric that their foes had arrived not by seizing the refugee ships but by finding other ships on the island. Realizing that this meant there were still refugee ships waiting to land, Haldric decided that they would need to secure the coastline for the last refugees' safe arrival. They met the vanguard in battle, and despite various enemy reinforcements, they were victorious. They continued onwards towards the beach, where they saw only some of the ships had landed, the rest staying at sea to avoid the orcs. As they charged into battle, the Lich-Lord Jevyan made a brief appearance, announcing his intention to obtain the Ruby of Fire, before casting a curse of darkness upon the humans. In spite of this, they managed to route the enemy forces, before Haldric and Lady Jessene stole away to speak in private.
Aethyr eavesdropped on the conversation, and realized that Haldric intended to sacrifice himself by planting a fake treaty on his body stating that the elves had acquired the Ruby of Fire in a deal, then dying at Jevyan's hands. He revealed himself and insisted that he take Haldric's place in the ruse. Despite Haldric's initial stubbornness, he relented, promising that he would avenge Aethyr afterwards by killing Jevyan before he could reanimate Aethyr's corpse.
With the treaty on his person, Aethyr joined Haldric in battle against Jevyan. As according to plan, Jevyan managed to kill Aethyr, and upon discovering the forged treaty, he was led to believe that the Ruby of Fire had indeed been sold to the elves. Haldric followed through with his promise by killing Jevyan. Haldric laid Aethyr's body to rest, acknowledging that the commander's sacrifice was pivotal in their victory.
|Sir, my family has been slaughtered, and my home lost. All I long for is to join them. Give me this honorable death... Please, Sir! I beg you!|
|—Commander Aethyr pleads with Prince Haldric to let him sacrifice himself to ensure victory.|
Aethyr was a man of self-sacrifice, and saw his life as secondary to his duty, such as when he remained in Clearwater, even when the final ships were leaving, knowing it would likely cost him his life. Likewise, he was determined to die an honorable death, offering to die in Haldric's place.
A highly patriotic man, Aethyr sought to avenge the death of the King of Clearwater by resisting the orcs for as long as possible. In battle cry, he invoked the name both of Clearwater and of the Green Isle.
|The Rise of Wesnoth|