He Who Rules...
From the Middle Annals of Rasia
From the Middle Annals of Rasia…
The Rebirth began in the Year of the Wild Magic. Most of you don’t know what that means, but it feels like an age earlier. The children probably know the legends by now, how four were reborn from an unknown life to save the world. But let us be clear on something first, these four weren’t reborn, it was more like the were resurrected by accident. Yes, I know, not very heroic sounding, but it isn’t the circumstances that make a hero, but the deeds, however unlikely those might be.
Where was I during this time? I was right there, trying to kill our heroes. Or rather, my possessed body was trying to kill them. You’ve heard the myths and whispers, I was enthralled by the Maelvoiy and it was the darkest moment of my very long life.
The tale begins on an island off what was once called the Sword Coast at the Enlightened Monastery of the Unraveling Weave, a monastery devoted to Mystra and the destruction of evil artifacts. It was that day that the Maelvoiy took possession of me, though to this day I still do not recall how this happened. I guess its one of those mysteries of life the oracles alway talk about. Within an hour, I had managed to destroy the monastery grounds, killing all but five monks who had sequestered themselves within the monastery’s catacombs.
Four of those monks—the indignant Sonyek, the beaten Cordemar, the terrified Janik, and the tenacious Tromas—along with four scrolls of resurrection had retreated to a sacred crypt where four holy saints were interred in hopes of reviving the dead heroes to save them and their monastery. The fifth monk, the cowardly and annoying Malchievik, retreated to the Crucible of Dark Souls where the monks disposed of the evil artifacts and where the possessor’s necklace, the artifact that would allow the Maelvoiy to permanently possess my body, has held.
Without haste, our intrepid monks each cast their scrolls over the saints’ sarcophagi, only to be horrified when the bodies regenerated to the unlikeliest of beings:
- Nátulcian Culnámo the Ghost Hunter of the Mistwallows returned as the skinny aasimar oracle of death Plato de Camarones, gripping Soulsplitter, Nátulcian’s magical mace, in her hands.
- Aton Percinov, the Saint-Walker of Kelemvor, rose as the cheerly and portly Brother Petrovian Scree, inquisitor of Kelemvor and holding Fadeaway, Percinov’s holy avenger.
- The Bandit-Lord Valik returned as the wily, unrepentant Pantsful Aptshaper Longbottom, companion of the renown eidolon BubbleTea.
- Lyari Pholont, the Shadesilk and one of the Harpers’ founders, revived as the questionable Soledad Horndoggle, rogue and opportunist.
These four heroes had little time for questions before I barged my way into the crypt and ate their benefactors, forcing them to flee further into the catacombs and the iron door that separated them from the relative safety of the Crucible of Dark Souls.
After a bit of quick thinking and cajoling, Brother Petrovian and Plato both managed to persuade the intractable Malchievik to let them into the Crucible, leaving Soledad and Pantsful to face an enraged, bewitched dragon with only their wits and a wand of a protection from evil given to them by Malchievik.
In a feat of outstanding grace, Pantsful elegantly tapped my muzzle with the wand, infusing my body with the protective enchantments, thereby casting the Maelvoiy briefly from my soul. In the moment of clarity, I told the two of the possessor’s necklace and tasked them with destroying it before I could claim it. I then flew as far away as I could manage before the wand’s spell wore off and my puppet-master returned.
Malchievik was true to form once the reborn heroes were inside the Crucible, providing little information or help, to the point where Pantsful almost did something he would have later regretted, though he would most certainly disagree with that statement. Within the room they found plenty of holy water, the possessor’s necklace, a necklace of strangulation, a periapt of foul rotting, a scarab of death, a scroll containing Nátulcian Culnámo’s holy scripture that allowed her to exorcise evil sprits, and scroll of the Saint-Walker’s vows from when he forsook his wizarding ways and took on the mantle of a paladin of Kelemvor. With these tools and only a slight bit of help from Malchievik, the four devised and hatched their half-baked plan.
Brother Petrovian Scree took a moment for himself and his deity, and very solemnly recited the Saint-Walker’s vows, pledging his life and goals in service to Kelemvor. The words spoken, he could feel the power of Fadeway pulse in his hands. He was a paladin of Kelemvor, as he was always destined to be. Plato reviewed the words and blessings of Nátulcian Culnámo, and readied her soul to battle the demon possessing me. Soledad and Pantsful gathered as much holy water as they could carry, and before Pantsful bound Soledad as tightly as he could.
The other three dragged the bound Soledad out of the Crucible toward the catacombs’ exit, all the while awaiting my arrival. It didn’t take long before I came crashing back through the already crumbling passageways, And before I could even think of snatching up one of them in my jaws, Brother Scree summoned the powers of Fadeway to dispel the magic jar within my belly that contained the Maelvoiy, thereby freeing me from my imprisonment. The heroes then slipped the possessor’s necklace over the willing Soledad’s head, forcing the Maelvoiy into the tiefling.
Fearing that I might somehow still be used against them, I enchanted a stone with magical light that would weaken the demon until they could drag him into the daylight where he would be further weakened and more susceptible to Nátulcian Culnámo’s exorcising prayers.
In the daylight, Plato’s recitation of the Ghost Hunter’s words were flawless and quickly expelled the Maelvoiy from Soledad where he was paralyzed by the glorious rays of the sun. Fadeaway and Soulsplitter took care of the demon in short time thereafter.
Their fight for their second lives over, the heroes were stranded on a small atoll with the destroyed Enlightened Monastery of the Unraveling Weave its only point of interest. I returned shortly thereafter to ferry them to the mainland, and to take possession of the holy artifacts they possessed to return them to their rightful owners. I left them just outside Baldur’s Gate with the tattered clothes on their backs, the few items they were able to scavenger from the ruined monastery, Valik’s Ring, and Lyari Pholont’s holy symbol.
What happened next was later retold to me by the lovely Valanthe Nerissia. The four entered Baldur’s Gate and headed straight to the local temple of Kelemvor in hopes of finding some answers to their resurrection and past lives. They were surprised to find themselves expected by messengers of Waterdavian temple of Kelemvor who claimed that their rebirth was prophesied by the church and their presence was requested in Waterdeep.
While the low level clerics knew nothing of the heroes beyond their names, they did offer them 2,000 gold pieces and free travel to Waterdeep to at least hear the High Priest out. With no better options, they accepted the offer and immediate set off for their home.
Upon arriving in the City of Splendors, the four were immediately taken to the Godsmouth Cathedral, where they were told to wait for a moment. In that time, Brother Scree was summoned for a personal meeting with strikingly beautiful priestess Valanthe Nerissia, who later summoned the other three to ask for their assistance in a private matter with the church of Kelemvor.
The Godsmouth Ossuary, Waterdeep’s primary crypt since before the founding of the city, was experiencing a mystery of disappearing corpses. If the news were to get out, it would be disastrous for the church as it was their sacred duty to protect the dead. The underground ossuary was actually deeper and larger than anyone lay person knew, and the church of Kelemvor—in fact all churches of the previous gods of the dead before Kelemvor—only occupied a small portion of the Ossuary.
Valanthe asked the heroes to enter the unexplored areas of the Ossuary, find the source of the disappearances, and clear out the level to free up more burial space. She offered each 500 gp for the work, the opportunity to keep any non-religious relics found within, and research into the lives before their death.
The offer accepted, the Lady Nerissia asked the heroes to be at the Ossuary by midnight, where they will be locked within until their task was done. She gave them a chime of opening with five remaining charges that would allow them to get past the locked entrance when they finished their task. With nothing more to be said, the door to the Ossuary and the heroes stepped in…