Friday, 11 January 2013

Enchiridion: The Blades of Kry'ceh

The Blade of Kry'ceh secured at the Royal Armoury

By the time the Dark Lord finally crossed the Mordant Sea and set foot upon the land of our forefathers, few of the legendary Ten Thousand Heroes remained to fight against him. Of those that did, many were old or infirm and that included the twelve Disciples of Waerness.

These holy warriors knew their failing bodies could not do battle with the host of the Dark Lord, at least not without supernatural aid. Certain all would be lost if the Dark Lord prevailed, they each made a terrible pact with a Greater Daemon of the Urhell. These Daemons bore no allegiance to the Dark Lord despite their evil nature, and saw a chance to devour virtuous souls, freely given - the most delectable of demonic feasts.


The pact gave the Disciples of Waerness a martial prowess far beyond even that which they possessed during their prime. Witnesses saw them kill hundreds and thousands of the Dark Lord's forces upon the fields of battle around Caeburgh. They served a pivotal role in allowing the King to reach the Dark Lord with the Trinity of the Dying Breath. But not one of them rejoiced when the  final victory was achieved for each had a daemon within, devouring his soul, corrupting his flesh, transforming him into a creature the equal or worse of that which they had been fighting.

This was the fate they had chosen in order to protect their homeland and its people. But it was not a fate they accepted without due preparation.

Prior to the ritual that bound each to a nightmare spawn, they undertook a pilgrimage to the great blacksmith Tyfanu of the Blessed Hammer high in the mountains of Olverym. The beseeched him to forge twelve blades that could pierce even a hellbound heart. Tyfanu granted their request, but gave warning that his work would be all for nought if they lost the will to sacrifice themselves and their friends.


His warning proved tragically prescient. Upon hearing of the Dark Lord's defeat, four of the Disciplines successfully turned the blades upon themselves. Whether the rest were too cowardly or too lost to the daemons inside them, we'll never know, but we do know three of them rode south to Valesland in Belgren and embarked upon a reign of terror that ended only when a lowly weaver-woman coaxed her way into theirs beds and then slit their throats with their own enchanted daggers while they slept.

Of the remaining five disciplines, one either retained some vestige of virtue or else was driven by a daemon harbouring great hatred for his brethren. Feargus of Anblair hunted down his former comrades, slaughtering each in turn, until only he and the eldest of the Disciples - Maevon Camlach - was left.

History records that they faced each other across the Sentinel's Bridge on the border of the Wilder Hills and the Southern Ranges. Scholars agree they fought - the scars of their battle can still be seen in the masonry of the bridge and the sheer cliffs leading down to the Red River - but no one knows who won or lost, only that neither Disciple, nor the daemons inside them, were seen or heard from again.

By Bobo Melf

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