This universe has a civilization of humans! And some other things. It's not crowded in the way Edda is but it's not just the one planet either. The humans might be easiest to start with. They're on that planet over there, it's not Earth but it has very Earthlike conditions and bronze-age humans living in cities and villages dotted across two large continents. Depending on how thoroughly any prospective visitors look they might find other things before visiting.
The beast is feeding on them, in the absence of victims. Your healing is mighty, but I now fear you are inadvertently allowing that spirit of murder to grow fat on stolen health, creating a powerful and terrible thing. You should be wary.
I am loathe to Destroy the poor thing, I do not Destroy; Other dragons would do so gladly, and I can provide a reference for one such if you wish. I am not sure if those it has infected can be preserved in the greater spirit's absence, or if they would die when it does, or if they would cause it to be reborn. It may be that shattering the overspirit will ruin the people that form its body. From what I have seen of its structure, I think it likely.
The subtle power of wishes, as I have heard one is questing for in order to be reborn properly, is unknown to me. However, I do not see a reason why not. I could have restored them - but I will not heal those who do not wish to be healed, even in death.
She refers them to one known as Stonesplitter and gives directions to their territory - no dragon is truly a mercenary, but Stonesplitter is (relatively) wise and cooperative, and very very good at destroying precisely what they mean to. If they say that an elder thought this was a task for them, that will at least get their attention.
It only takes a few minutes. "Here I am, visitor!" He crows aloud, flashily flying overhead. "You have come to me SPECIFICALLY this time! I can tell!"
He swoops around for a showy landing on a nearby stone ruin. He's big - not nearly so titanic as the Elders, but big.
I will hear what you have to say, twolegged one, I have a feeling it'll be at least amusing.
You have spoken to the Elder of Peace? He seems surprised. I have slain several malign spirits in my time. I have even excised cancers and rabies with a lightning-thin razor of Destruction. There is an art to Destruction and I am much practiced at it. It is very gratifying to have an Elder speak of me like that.
Some spirits are just balls of hate and fear. Some things just have to be destroyed, in the end. If you want to bring them back a bit different afterward, that is your choice. Whatever this spirit is like, it's going to lash out unless I can completely cripple it in the first blow. Which cannot be guaranteed. Some things you don't want broken will probably break. And I want some sort of reward, of course. I'm not very sure what.
Lots of things. The ground, the trees, anything else nearby. Most notably any vulnerable minds without some sort of ward. Salt lines and protective rituals and ash or tinder. I want not just Shiny Things. Those are weak Treasure. Historical, or magic, or customized, or unique.
If something is easily available, I do not want it! Well, I might, but it wouldn't make good payment, good Treasure. That's why jewelry won't suffice this time. I've heard you have entire planetsful of the stuff.
I look forward to it. And then I can slay this spirit of yours and try to leave its hosts alive. It'll help if I can observe it for a bit first.
That shouldn't be a problem.
Procurement turns up with a bauble found in the ruins of the wishmakers' civilization in Wish. It changes color depending on what people nearby it want, which can produce some pretty patterns if they're pushing for different colors; it floats, and will stay wherever it's put. There are some in museums but this one was spared for Stonesplitter.
Ooh, that's not bad at all! Not utterly amazing either, but this is not such a monumental task. Well worth it and then some, if they have a bit more work or favor to ask.
If they can put the hosts somewhere safe from collateral damage and ideally without alerting them that something is up that would be perfect.
There are a few empty-ish planets for purposes when one might need an empty planet - there's a disappearance point, where the forensics demons dump extra stuff, and other continents reserved for emergency transit and staging-area. The planet has air and some Valian-ecology ground cover and nothing anybody will miss. They can take the prisoners and Stonesplitter to the staging-area, where vast steppe rolls away in all directions to display the lack of things that may be importantly collateral-damaged. Their prison staffperson Limboite will stay nearby.
The murder spirit and prisoners are riled up by the scenery change.
Ooh, that's nasty. Stonesplitter comments as the air turns into a red haze and blood wells up from rocks, malice palpable in the air. I hope this cursed thing is not used to its new strength. Here I go!
The battle, as it were, is mostly magical. The aura leaps forth to Stonesplitter who is flying overhead, driven back by a harmonic roar and razors of white cutting through the air. The humans roar and all charge with immense speed and strength, but Stonesplitter is out of reach, flying. He circles and lashes out at irregular intervals as the red mist eats away at his feathers and blades of blood open wounds. The red haze grows thinner and eventually Stonesplitter lashes out with stronger magic and there is a sort of nauseating painful twisting as the mist rapidly starts fading. The raging prisoners collapse.
Come heal them!