The Crimson Elfstones, also known as the Draining Stones, are one of the five known sets of Elfstones. They were rediscovered alongside three other sets of lost Elfstones—emerald, saffron, and white—but they were the only ones to be used and retained.
Like all other Elfstones, the crimson Elfstones were created in the Age of Faerie. During the Age of Faerie. the Darkling boy Charis stole four of the five existing sets of Elfstones from the Elves. He left his love, the Elven princess Aleia Omarosian, the blue Elfstones so that she could come and find him.
When Aleia became the first Ellcrys and initially created the Forbidding, the stolen Elfstones were transported to the alternate dimension along with Charis. As the creatures of the Forbidding had no use for as well as an innate fear of Elven magic, the stolen Elfstones were discarded with a cache of other talismans in a menacingly dark cavern that later became known as the Kroat Abyss. The Stones lay there for untold millenia largely undisturbed, though occasionally foragers in the Forbidding would happen upon the cache of talismans, including Weka Dart and his young niece, Tesla Dart.
The four sets of stolen Elfstones were eventually recovered by Redden Ohmsford, the shape-shifter Oriantha, and Tesla Dart during Tael Riverine's march on the Four Lands. Shortly after the small group discovered the ancient cache, they were found and attacked by a servant of the Straken Lord. Redden used the crimson Elfstones in a desperate attempt to save their lives. He used the wishsong in concert with the awesome power of the Elfstones to utterly destroy their pursuers. Redden then decided to keep the Elfstones on his person instead of stowing them them away with the other three sets.
Redden used the crimson Elfstones again during a showdown against the Ilse Witch Grianne Ohmsford, who had just killed the Straken Lord and proclaimed herself Queen of the Forbidding. He again combined the wishsong magic with that of the Stones to fight the witch, but she began to fight back and gain the upper hand. Redden was in danger of being killed when Arlingfant Elessedil became the new Ellcrys and renewed the Forbidding, which swept away Grianne and all the Demons.
The side effect of using the crimson Elfstones in the way he did left Redden in a comatose state for months afterward. During his time in this state, his twin brother Railing gave the Stones to Aphenglow Elessedil to be stored safely in Paranor.
Later, the Elven nation laid claim to the crimson Elfstones, demanding their return. However, as Ard Rhys of the Druids, Aphenglow repeatedly denied their demands, insisting that the Druid edict on the collection and preservation of magic superseded any nationalistic claims.
Redden's use of the crimson Elfstones later manifested itself in his descendant, Reyn Frosch. Because the wishsong had joined with the magic of the Stones in Redden, Reyn inherited a completely new kind of wishsong, with qualities that were darker and less reliable. A red light or haze appears when Reyn loses control of his wishsong, and he goes catatonic for a time after losing control, like Redden had done after his battle against the Ilse Witch.
The crimson Elfstones appear to be solely designed as a magical weapon. The effect of using the Stones by themselves is unknown, as the two times they were wielded their power was fused with that of the wishsong. However, over a century after the crimson Stones' discovery, the Druids have taken to calling them the "draining Stones."
Use of the crimson Elfstones unleashes massive destructive powers with fiery effects. Enemies burst into flames and disintegrate, with the effect coming at a cost to the life force of the user, who can feel the pain and anguish of his victims.