Greyhawk 636 CY: The Rise of Asmodeus
Cleric/Waker of the Beast
The master will raze the world. It will topple cities. When it wakes it will cleanse the world in preparation for the mad god. It is hunger. It is rage. It is the The doom of realities; the Tarrasque.
Bernard Culp was a Paladin of Heironeous who saw the fall of Rauxes. Battered and broken he left the ancient city alive, unlike most of the residents, and set out to make a new life…wiser now that he saw the gods offered no help to men. It was three nights out of the broken city that he began having the nightmares. The sound of deep breathing in slumber at first. Then the volcanic rage as the ancient beast awoke to devastate the world. And he understood what it was… this Tarrasque that nations and gods feared. And he understood why it could not be trapped or imprisoned… because it was the rage and hunger of a god already imprisoned.
And he did not run from the dreams. He did not flee them. He let the great beast become part of him. Change him.
His wisdom and intelligence fading, he now knows where the master rests. He knows the songs that will help wake it. But he needs guidance… He once was so wise, so merciful and so kind. Now he is just hungry and cold. Another voice whispers to him in the nightmares… It says he can lead him and use his power and connection with the beast to bring the world, all worlds, to an end of cold flame. And free their common master.
Bernard was once a member of the Knight Protectors of the Great Kingdom. Staying behind in Rauxes during the nightmarish rule of Ivid V, he strove to protect the innocent citizens. Whatever terrible event led to the city being blocked off from the rest of the world occurred during Bernard’s wedding. He used a bead of summoning in an attempt to call Heironeous for aid, but the infernal energies in the place corrupted the power, making it erupt in a blast and killing Culp’s new wife.
Red Jack, Frederick and Jeremy captured him while the party was tackling the gnomish Clockwork Dungeon. Thanks to some intervention by Sir Christopher’s Illithid ally, Culp was pacified and given orders to lead the group into Rauxes. In the end, Culp seemed to regain a semblance of his old self when faced with the Pit Fiend Baalzephon and Ivid himself. Culp used his scarred bead of summoning to call on his god one more time. Bernard was killed by the resulting backlash, but Heironeous was able to come to the group’s aid, killing Baalzephon and purifying the city in the process.
Thanks to Culp’s sacrifice, the great city of Rauxes is in the process of being restored and may hold the hope of the rebirth of the Great Kingdom.