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The most common of these claimed that they were evil magical creatures who could change their shape into that of a female human. In this guise, they were said to lure male adventurers into the depths of the Brynwood forest and there transformed into wolves, giant spiders, huge snakes, or owlbears to then devour their victims.
However, a rival tale reported the opposite, saying that they were in fact real human women who adopted animal forms to discourage anyone who ventured into the forest. A certain minstrel wrote a ballad about one of these women, whom he named "Snowhair the Sorceress", a scornful, white-haired mage.
A third story popular in taverns in Impiltur said that the Bryndar (so named in this story) dwelled in an ancient castle with many spires deep in Brynwood, where they developed powerful spells and used magical gates or portals to travel to far-flung cities like Airspur, Telflamm, Westgate, and Waterdeep. There they sought magic by underhanded means, using stealth or poison to drug or slay wizards and rob them of whatever they could. With enough magical power, they would one day emerge from the Brynwood and attempt to take over and rule the world—provided their schemes were not thwarted by courageous adventurers.
Though completely unproven, this last tale was particularly vivid and persistent. By 1370 DR, the sage Elminster theorized that some unknown person or force was spreading or maintaining this tale of the Bryndar to lure adventures into the forest for some reason. Certainly, three adventuring companies of note vanished after venturing into Brynwood through the 1360s DR.