Template:Character infobox King of the Wild Hunt, also known to the unicorns as "Sparrowhawk", is the main antagonist of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, an Aen Elle and leader of an elven cavalry known as the Dearg Ruadhri, which means "Red Riders" or "Red Horsemen".
Template:SpoilerEredin, along with the Aen Saevherne elf, Avallac'h, once possessed a great power known as The Gate of the Worlds, which allowed them to control space and time. They had used this power to conquer the world in which the Aen Elle currently reside, exterminating all of its human inhabitants in the process (a fact discovered by Ciri when she stumbles across a gigantic mass grave). The two elves subsequently lost their power by unknown means, and had since conspired together to reclaim it.
In the fifth tome of The Witcher Saga, The Lady of the Lake, Eredin meets Ciri while she is en route with Avallac'h to Tir ná Lia, where she was expected to produce an heir for Auberon Muircetach, the reigning king of the Aen Elle, after which she would be allowed to return to her own world. Ciri becomes quite taken with Eredin, and realizing this, he plots to use her to further his and Avallac'h's schemes; the two intend for her child to act as a means for them to regain their power.
When Ciri and Auberon struggled to conceive, Eredin supplies the king with a specially blended aphrodisiac to enhance his performance. The concoction proves to be too much for Auberon, however, and he dies after consuming it. In the wake of the king's untimely death, Eredin becomes the defacto ruler of the Aen Elle, and with their plans ruined, he and Avallac'h resolve not to release Ciri for fear that her abilities might be used against them in the future.
Shortly thereafter, Ciri escapes with the help of the unicorns, and travels to an unknown world, with Eredin and his cavalry giving chase. He later appears to her as a wraith while she is resting at a tavern, telling her that he will wait for her at The Spiral, a place she will eventually reach after her long journey through space and time.
At some point, Eredin and the Dearg Ruadhri enter the human world. Appearing as spectral warriors on horseback, they terrorize the land and abduct villagers to be used as slaves. They become known and feared as the Wild Hunt, with Eredin as their terrible king.
No enemy is more terrifying than the King of the Wild Hunt, who leads a horde of ghastly riders across the sky. Doom incarnate, he fears no opponent, for he can always decide that his adversary is doomed, which usually determines the outcome of any clash. Over the course of the game, Geralt has several opportunities to meet the King, as his every step is dodged by the specter.
Over the course of the game, the King taunts Geralt each time they meet by twisting everything the witcher has done in an attempt to have our hero doubt himself and his own motives.
It is heavily implied that the Wild Hunt is pursuing Geralt as he runs through the forests near Kaer Morhen in the Prologue. In Chapter I he appears in the Outskirts along with the ghost of Leo. In Chapter IV, Geralt must be careful not to summon him while completing a quest for the Hermit. These encounters culminate at the end of the game and true to form, the witcher is faced with another dilemma, as the King has come to claim the soul of Jacques de Aldersberg.
- I am persecuted by the Wild Hunt, a cavalcade of ghostly riders on skeletal steeds. Leading them is the King of the Wild Hunt, the harbinger of war and despair. I know he seeks me, but I don't know why.
- The King of the Hunt appeared again and appointed one of his wraiths to fight me. He exploited a weakness — the wraith was the specter of Leo.
- The spectral sovereign appeared in the village of Murky Waters near Vizima. I'm certain his appearance heralds disaster.
- The King of the Wild Hunt appeared in the Grand Master's vision. I now know that I'm not the only one haunted by fate. The ghostly king seeks Jacques de Aldersberg as well, and wants his soul perhaps even more than he wants mine.
- I fought the King of the Wild Hunt for the soul of Jacques de Aldersberg — in the Ice Plains, I defeated the specter.
This journal entry is given by reading The Wild Hunt book.
During his final conversation with Letho, Geralt recalls his forgotten memories, remembering that Eredin found him and Yennefer at the Hanged Man's Tree and captured the sorceress. Geralt gathered the witchers of the Viper School and engaged the Wild Hunt in an attempt to rescue her but the Hunt far outnumbered them. So Geralt offered his soul in exchange for Yennefer's, to which Eredin agreed without hesitation.
- According to Nordlings, the Wild Hunt is a procession, or rather a cavalcade of skeletal horsemen. They rush across the sky on the bony remains of steeds. Clad in rusty remnants of armor, they wear jagged swords at their waists. Like comets, the Wild Hunt is an omen of war, which has been confirmed beyond all doubt.
- The spectral cavalcade ventures out in search of victims every several years, but its harvest was never as rich as just before the last war with Nilfgaard, when over twenty souls went missing Novigrad alone after the Hunt passed through. Curiously, elven and dwarven legends make not the slightest mention of the Wild Hunt.
Eredin returns in The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt as the primary antagonist. He seeks to capture Ciri, as the world of the Aen Elle face annihilation, and so he desires the witcheress to power the portal to allow his armies to invade the world of the Aen Seidhe.
After pursuing Ciri through an unknown number of alternate worlds, Eredin finally cornered her and Avallac'h on Ard Skellig. He uncorked a phylactery, unleashing a curse on Avallac'h, though he had no intention of killing the Sage. But Avallac'h was not the type to go down without a fight and unleashed a magic storm that devastated the forest, enabling Ciri to escape. The girl teleported to Velen, where she narrowly escaped the Crones and Imlerith.
Eredin later searched through Avallac'h's Velen hideout, accompanied by Nithral and Caranthir. When they detected Geralt and Keira Metz there as well, Eredin ordered Nithral to deal with them. Ultimately, the King of the Wild Hunt gained nothing that could point to Ciri.
Eventually, the Hunt discovered Ciri's hiding place on the Isle of Mists, but Geralt had gotten to her first and they both teleported to Kaer Morhen to draw the Hunt out. The Hunt laid siege to the decaying fortress and despite the valiant efforts of the outnumbered defenders, the White Frost incapacitated all save Ciri and Vesemir. Imlerith engaged the elder witcher, enabling Eredin to finally get a hold of Ciri. As he dragged her towards a portal, vowing that she will not escape him again, Vesemir broke off from his fight with Imlerith and clashed swords with Eredin, forcing him to release Ciri. Vesemir might've overcome the King of the Hunt, had not Imlerith recovered and marched towards him. Vesemir managed to push Ciri was with Aard before the giant elf lifted him up by the throat. As the Hunt surrounded Ciri, Vesemir pleaded her to run, Eredin declared that she won't, stating that all humans are impractical. He then extended his hand towards Ciri, beckoning her to surrender. Despite Vesemir's protests, Ciri dropped her sword. In a futile act of defiance, Vesemir non-fatally stabbed Imlerith, prompting the latter to snap his neck, killing him. Eredin's victory seemed but certain until in grief and anguish, Ciri unleashed a magical scream that affected the Hunt. Caranthir quickly conjured a portal, which Imlerith retreated through but Eredin stumbled towards Ciri, despite the danger to himself. He would've died, had not Caranthir grabbed his king and dragged him through the portal.
Following this, Eredin suffered massive blows to his power base. First, Geralt slew Imlerith on Bald Mountain before traveling to Tir ná Lia with Avallac'h and convinced Ge'els, Eredin's viceroy and administrator, of Eredin's regicide of the previous king, Auberon Muircetach.
The Wild Hunt's flagship, the Nagalfr, was later drawn to Skellige by Ciri through use of the Sunstone. The Hunt was caught in a trap, with the Lodge of Sorceresses preventing them from teleporting and the Nilfgaardian navy blocking them by sea, and the Hunt were forced to contend with both Nilfgaardians and Skelligers. Caranthir's magic initially froze the opposition, until Ciri broke his staff, enabling Geralt to kill him. Eredin personally faced off against Crach an Craite. Wounding the jarl, he tossed him his battle axe and asked if he had any final words. Crach refused to oblige him and lunged to attack only to be cut down. Eredin then detected Geralt coming from right behind him and informs the witcher that he had something to tell him, but he would do so when Geralt lies dying at his feet. After a long, tenuous battle, Geralt stabbed Eredin in the left eye, knocking out his mask, before delivering the fatal blow. As Eredin laid dying, he revealed that Avallac'h had deceived the both of them, and had fled with Ciri. Geralt refused to believe him, as Eredin, the King of the Wild Hunt, expired.
"The name of the King of the Wild Hunt, the identity of the lord of nightmares, the being behind the frightful mask - this long remained unknown. Over time, however, scraps of information gradually coalesced into a full of our foe - but did nothing to detract from the terror he inspired.
The wild hunt was in truth an elite cavalry brigade from the world of the Aen Elle, the Alder Folk and was commanded by their ambitious and ruthless king. Eredin Brèac Glas. He would travel via secret paths through the cold emptiness between his world from ours to capture victims and take them back to his homeland as slaves.
The current object of his hunt was Cirilla, whose power he wanted to harness for his own uses. The only obstacle in his path - Geralt of Rivia." Template:Endspoiler
Developer CD Projekt's characterization of the King of the Wild Hunt taken from the monsterbook, which was enclosed with the Collectors Edition of the computer game The Witcher for Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic:
"This powerful being leads a retinue of wraith raiders in their mad rush across the sky. The Wild Hunt, like a comet, is considered an ill omen, a harbinger of disaster and war. The King of the Wild Hunt is an unusual opponent, if only because he is from another world — a fact well known to Sapkowski's fans.
"When we decided that the King of the Wild Hunt would appear in the game, we knew he had a serious part to play. From beginning to end, this nightmarish ruler appears on Geralt's path as an oppressor and portent of misery. The King of the Wild Hunt is linked to the forces of Destiny: he hovers just outside the main narrative, only appearing to remind the witcher of painful events or to provoke difficult discussions.
"Our protagonist's most powerful opponent is thus one of the game's most important and mysterious characters.
The King of the Wild Hunt wields a scythe — an attribute of death. Beneath his ragged robes, he wears elements of an ancient suit of armor. The ornaments on his clothing and crown evoke associations with flesh—eating maggots."
|Astride the horse skeletons sat skeletal riders wearing rusty plate armor and chain mail, shredded coats, and dented and corroded helmets adorned with bullhorns and headdresses of ostrich and peacock feathers. Beneath their raised visors glowed the specters' bluish eyes. Their tattered banners rustled. At the head of the demonic cavalcade galloped an armed wraith, a crown upon his helmet, around his neck a pendant beating rhythmically against the breastplate.|