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ID: 82

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November 18, 2005, 10:42 pm

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Catacombs

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Silent voices in the catacombs of hush demand call out to the King in his sleep. He awakes, pale as bone, raving and delusional, whispering of the Retribution of the Charred Skulls. The servants look on horrified at their foaming lord…

The Cathedral bells ring out once. The Cardinal stands back from his window high in the Cathedral tower looking out over the black skyline. The priests shift uneasily, nervously eyeing the artefact on the table.

“Yes,” answers the Cardinal, unasked, “it is of human origin.”

“Do we advise the King of this?”

“No!” snaps the Cardinal “Know’s thou not his condition? ‘Twould send him beyond the confines of sanity. We must excavate further. Perhaps summon some trusted friend at court who can lend aid in case…”

Work in the crypt has unearthed an unsettling find: a charred skull, the bone deformed in a mask of pain. Coincidence, then, that the King’s sleep is disturbed by dreams of avenging burnt skulls?

Ten centuries ago, forgotten to even the history books, King Aralon II persecuted the Lamezzites, having them slaughtered and massacred. The priests of the Cathedral took pity on them, offered them secret asylum in the extensive catacombs below the Cathedral. But the then Cardinal, Elian XI, was corrupt and, tempted by the offers of gold betrayed the Lamezzites to the King. The King had the catacombs filled with boiling oil and sealed, before executing Elian for his treachery in offering the Lamezzites asylum in the first place. As the Cardinal’s body hung lifeless from the castle walls, the bodies of the dead Lamezzites scalded and charred in their appalling tomb.

The years have passed and the spirits of the dead want retribution for the ancestral misdeeds. The catacombs have been opened by the recent crypt extensions, and the first of the thousand skulls has been found.

Right now, though the priests and their friends from court stand before the newly opened catacombs ready to explore…



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Comments ( 9 )
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ephemeralstability
March 11, 2003, 10:19
1xp
Some questions left unanswered:

Why now? Why didn't the spirits awake earlier?
What will they find? Lots of undead?
What happened to the boiling oil? (Actually that all seeped away into the ground of the catacombs)
History: why was the King persecuting the Lamezzites? Why did the priests have sympathy for them?

I thought there I'd written too much already, so these are just left as open questions.
strom
March 11, 2003, 18:35
0xp
Perhaps, as the King and his henchmen prepared the oil, a shaman from within the catacombs was casting an incantation of resurrection. This could entail the dead coming back in corporal form and possess the current King, Cardinal, and other political, spiritual, and military leaders.

History: Maybe the Lamezzites are a scape-goat for failures of the King. Historically speaking, there have been many ethnical cultural, and economical reasons given to execute the Jews, Gypsies, Poles, and Irish; to name a few. Thus, the king could merely be averting attention from his own failures in policy driven decrees.
strom
March 11, 2003, 18:43
0xp
I forgot to mention that Lamezzites could only come back to life when the crypt was reopened. This would spur fear amongst the current regime, and temptation from a younger, more disbelieving generation.
manfred
March 12, 2003, 2:38
1xp
Or perhaps, some other group, historically in some way linked to these Lamezzites, is persecuted right now?

Could well awaken these spirits, even if they were sleeping for such a long time.
Agar
March 12, 2003, 14:46
1xp
Invariably, in any persecution/genocide, some escape. Could this small band of decendants be the ones motavating the excavations or even the purpetraitors?

The Lamezzites likely had thier own beliefs and had at least one spiritual leader with them, perhaps they beseeched thier gods as they were being slaughtered and now are acting to avenge thier murder.
gottgen
January 22, 2004, 2:47
0xp
Can I just say to ephemeralstability, next time you think you're typing too long...don't worry about it!

You do an excelent job in thinking these things up, and any added flavor you can think of is probably worth our reading.
Magus
January 22, 2004, 13:56
0xp
I think that you did a great job here, and your not hurting anyone by typing a lot your only helping further, and if people do not want to read all of it, they don't have to. Anyway, catacombs are always a nice dungeon to have.
Voted valadaar
August 28, 2013, 10:33
0xp
Not bad - though the scale speaks more of legend than reality. Paying for enough oil to flood the catacombs would probably wreck his economy for years, if it was even possible to source enough oil for the task. And don't get me started on getting it boiling in the first place :)

Perhaps a fair number were slain with boiling oil, and that over the years the legend grew to the scale of 'the entire catacombs' were flooded.


Voted MysticMoon
September 1, 2013, 8:23
0xp
Simple, straightforward, and a good seed that could be taken in many different directions.


Random Idea Seed View All Idea Seeds

the dead mechent of death

       By: celticring

To Dougles Nye money is power, a powerful wizard only newly into lich-hood

Originally the son of servants to a noble family, yet he found that life humiliating. "How could anyone stand to serve another?" he often wondered. His father, was a greedy man who offered an explanation one day “It’s all for the coin, every demanding, humiliating thing. It’s for the coin, boy."

So when Dougles began developing the potential for magic, he found a way out of a life of servitude. Learning magic though stolen books, he made his escape. Taking the all the possessions of the lord’s vaults with him. He set out to gain as much money as possible.

His gifts for magic allowed him many advantages other merchants could only dream of. Capitalized on the use of deviation magic, allowing him to always having what the city he is in needs most, whether that is wheat or weapons, poison or drug doesn’t matter to him.

Some would say he follows war, disease, famine, and political strife like a vulture looking for a nice carcass to claim. What they don’t know is he has a hand in the conflict he supposedly follows. Assassinating ruler to incite wars, casting spells that decimating crops, acting as an information broker to both sides in a conflict. Dougles is known as a man who can get what you need to some, to other a monster who capitalizes on the suffering of others.

The lich know as Dougles Nye, prefers the title ”The Merchant of Death” for that shows just how much power money has earned him.

Ideas  ( NPCs ) | January 7, 2010 | View | UpVote 4xp


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