Saviors of Rhillau
50 years ago, when the red dragon threatened the region of Rhillau, the spirits of the forest coalesced into a collective consciousness and animated an old, shrubby yew to act as scout, guardian, and emissary to the surrounding humanoids. It reconnoitered the region for developments in the crisis; pled with humans, elves, and orcs to deal with the dragon; and watched the woods for fires.
Rillifane remained after the Dragonslayers’ success, though. It began by ranging the forest, but developed an independent personality over time as it took a more active role in fostering and protecting growth in the region. It harnessed the psionic potential of its hivemind and fused metal arms and armour to its tough body to safeguard prosperity – a nominally neutral goal that led Rillifane to fall on the side of humans and elves more often than the destructive orcs or kobold outsiders. It led Rillifane out of the woods and into Rhillau many times over half a century, to speak with townspeople about concerns. While it usually stopped at the gates to warn guards about raids and ambushes, it also advised merchants of stolen goods, returned the dead to their families, appealed to the governor to curtail poaching and reckless timbering.
If necessary, Rillifane may leave the region altogether to protect it.