And so, rested and reviv'd, the piteous glade of blackened oaks didst I enter. Their soulless limbs, talon'd and clawing didst revive thoughts of the blacken'd journey thus far I had endeavored. And my feet found me upon weary cobblestones of black. The wind's dreary wail of sorrow gust'd 'neath my feet, igniting longing, unfulfilled thoughts of Apricity.
'Pon a misty graveyard the cobbled path didst lead; Crumbled stone spear'd perilously to the shrouded moon. I didst witness the dampening of nightbirds' cries, it's chilling portend crawl'd 'long my spine as before me, the ground crumblest away to reveal a horror of aeons agone. Alike the lumb'rous whale breaching a mournful sea, the soil parted for the flailing flesh-worm. Erewhile I had seen all the horrors the world had to expel; this craz'd beast was beyond comprehension.
It's existence expunged holy thoughts of sanctuary and left me drifting, soul-dead 'long a hellish ocean. Betwixt it's human maw a fresh corpse lay, its weeping face a testament to its posthumous fate. Fortune favoured my wearied soul this night, as the eldrich horror sank once more aneath the ground leaving my tattered mind wondering as to its purpose. The kind hand of Fate 'pon my shoulder I tarried not, and left the woeful graveyard with haste.
Excerpt; Along the forsaken trail,
The above Excerpt from the Epic, Along the Forsaken Trail, by the poor cursed soul, Cables Auligra, makes mention of a Giant worm-like beast which inhabited a graveyard he stumbled upon. This creature is a Corpsemaker; an undead beast rarely borne of the flesh and bone of mass-graves, whereupon the corpses are left to decompose together and are mixed with fel magics. The corpsemaker is an amalgamation of many bodies, and while they may start as small as one tonne and three meters long, they continue to grow seemingly without limit as they feed on more bodies.
The appearance of a Corpsemaker is that of an enormous maggot-like beast with two too-large, flabby arms extending out of the first third of its body. The head of the beast flows seamlessly from the body and consists only of two slits of nostrils, and one enormous, flapping mouth covering the entire front of the animal. Though enlarged, the teeth inside the mouth are disturbingly human - flat, crushing molars and a large, slimy tongue which frequently lolls out to slather drool over its lips. To move, it uses its fattened arms to lift half its body up and lunge forward. A combination of its mouth and its powerful hands are used to dig beneath the ground.
Undoubtedly, the corspemaker's most disturbing feature are the plethora of limbs - rotting arms, legs,and even heads and torsos pockmark the body of this creature like pustulent boils erupting from its skin, all flailing and grasping, kicking and biting at the air. As the beast feasts on corpses more of these sprout from its flesh, a constant supply of body parts.
A curious, macabre trait of the Corpsemaker is its ability to tear these body parts off itself. If threatened from afar it can throw limbs and heads at foes with great force and accuracy - and the limbs remain animated for some hours after detachment. Gaping wounds from the torn limbs close over in minutes on the Corpsemaker. Up close, it uses a combination of its gnashing teeth, powerful arms and a caustic bile vomited which eats away living flesh to defend itself. Anyone trying to flank the beast will find themselves assaulted by body parts striking blindly.
While deadly to the living, the bile brought forth by the Corpsemaker is a powerful binding agent to undead flesh, and occasionally it may use this bile to create zombies to free room on its body. It will bring from its belly a small pool of bile and tear each required segment from itself, dabbing the ends in the pool before sticking the pieces together - like a child playing with glue. The result is a perfectly functional Zombified corpse, capable of shambling along of its own free will.
To kill a Corpsemaker is no easy feat, and its body will usually be riddled with previous, failed attempts - broken spears and shattered swords. Fire will sear its flesh, causing it to attempt to flee beneath the ground, where it can dig beneath its prey. If one is to engage the Corpsemaker in melee combat, they will find themselves in for a tough battle. Edged weapons are superior to blunt, as the mounds of flesh boasted by this fiend will absorb heavy blows with little effect. The fastest method of killing a Corpsemaker, if you can manage, is to pierce its underside and rupture the belly; allowing its bile to spill out onto the ground. The best time to do this would be as it has raised itself up to lunge at you.
Once birthed, Corpsemakers will roam, usually beneath the ground to aid in stealth. They prefer graveyards, where they dig through the graves looking for fresh bodies to add to their collection, but they can be found in most environments.
The Corpsemaker's cry is very uncharacteristic of its size and stature; it wails like a hiccupping babe.
- Corpsemakers should be treated as a major encounter. They are not something to be taken lightly.
- Corpsemakers under the thrall of skilled necromancers are often used in the battlefield as siege engines and also as a magnificent utility; they are extremely hardy, able to generate more zombies, and able to repair injured zombies with fresh limbs.
- Rasp the necromancer combined the use of an alchemical draught of his own creation with the Corpsemakers. Whenever a skirmish was won, he would set his Corpsemakers loose to feast on the bodies of the fallen - armor and swords and all - to create limbs of metal which could then be grafted onto zombies. A very economical way of creating a vast army of metal-lust Zombies.
- Corpsemakers will occasionally wander into or near civilisation, as there are more bodies to consume around humans.
- *The priests of the chuch are distraught! Someone or something has defiled the graveyard behind their holy building; digging up the ground and breaking tombstones. They beseech your party to investigate the graveyard and stop whatever people are doing this...!*