Greyhawk 636 CY: The Rise of Asmodeus

The Mysterious Manor and Beyond

Fireseek 15, 636 CY

Dearest Uncle and Cousins,

I hope you’ll excuse the informality of this letter. Things have begun to happen rather quickly, and I don’t have much time to go into detail. I’ll try to include everything relevant, but currently I’m having to write this while I keep watch on an unconscious dwarven antipaladin of Incabulos. No. I’m not making this up.

We went into the manor house much sooner than we had planned after a cleric of Incabulos passed through our camp at night and set all the guards into a terrible nightmare filled sleep. We tracked him through a secret passage from the barracks into the manor where we defeated and questioned a cleric of Kyuss. We learned a great many things there, some of which regards our family history.

It seems the Von Slythe’s had two ancestors who became vampires: Balthazar and Lianna. These two appear to have been the masterminds behind what happened and are over a 1000 years old! I’m constantly having to revise my view on the family’s history. Unfortunately, they weren’t actually dead.. or at least they hadn’t ceased to be undead… Well, the important part is that they broke out and are now roaming around again, possibly with the priest of Incabulos. It does, however, beg the question of why our predecessors didn’t slay them on sight or how they hid their condition…

Further, we seem to be finally getting a grasp on what the purpose of Everan’s experiment really was. The infused bloodline would give them the ability to join symbiotically with a devil. The stronger the taint became, the more powerful a devil they could combine with. This is as distressing as it is enlightening. I had been wondering why it would take them over 800 years to summon a devil, but there was obviously more going on. I have to assume this was the purpose of the ritual our family explosively disrupted. But who were they trying to summon, to whom would the devil have been bonded, and what is the ultimate purpose of this? Is it simply pure power or something much worse?

The, slightly, more uplifting news is that Balthazar was evidently a great and good hearted leader before his descent into vampirism and infernalism. His wife seems to have been the one to persuade him to that course. It’s good to know that we started following them for a reason other than blind obedience. Our new companion, an elven investigator and wizard from Veluna named Idrys, is working on decrypting Balthazar’s journal. I hope we learn more from that. I didn’t think to offer my help in the translation since we were drilled in Old Oeridian, but he seems to be progressing quickly.

I suppose I should also spare some words to mention the unfortunate Claire Von Slythe who was the honorable daughter of Balthazar and Lianna. After her accidental death at the hands of their undead servants, her pure spirit remained and haunted the family. She finally took residence in a ring we found and will awaken either when “the time is right” or when we force the issue using a ritual. We’ll see how that goes. I felt confident letting the monk carry the ring since they are quite resistant to manipulation of the mind. I hope I made the right choice. Hopefully we will eventually be able to lay her soul to rest.

We tracked the cult of Kyuss to a town called Mega’s Landing where we discovered all the inhabitants were being controlled in their nightmare riddled sleep. This is where we discovered the antipaladin. It was an exciting battle, and I promise I will tell you in detail when we see each other next. I’ve always wanted to fight one — but a dwarven antipaladin was beyond my imaginings. We’re currently taking him to Greyhawk City to the church of Morradin where we hope to get more answers.

Idrys did me the favor of inspecting the magic gem that embedded itself in the sword’s hilt. He couldn’t tell me much, but it seems to be made with either clerical or paladin magic and influenced by Heironeous. It is supposed to “synchronize with the wielder,” whatever that means. Oh, and we found a magic key that opens the Ghost Tower of Inverness. But we haven’t gone there yet, so I

Sorry, I forgot where I left off. We had to knock the antipaladin out again. I believe I need to wrap this up now. I promise to write again soon. It seems prudent to warn you that I won’t likely be in any one place very long, so writing back isn’t necessary. I’m excited about getting to fight vampires somewhere in the future too.

- With dedication and devotion,
Wilhelmena Stalwarth

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