Maddoc sat amid a pile of unrecognizable corpses. Men, Dwarves, Orcs, you couldn't tell. He periodically took a stab at one with his new knife and screamed, "STOP LAUGHING AT ME!"
I am the mask that grins and lies
I'll hide your face and shield your eyes....
When running a new party, get around the question of plot density by having the first discovery to be a deck of fate, or whatever you call it. If you use a real deck, you should definitely stack it to have the desired outcome, which is to curse the party to attract weird things to happen and involve them. This should not be told to the players at the time, so that they won't just up and try to get themselves 'decursed'. Though quite why they would want to is beyond me.