Wednesday, 21 July 2010

Disdain sanity and scholarship, the loftiest attributes man has been given...

And so the devil has you
And your soul is infallibly lost...
This is the woeful tale of what was once a man named Kraust.
A cruel and avaricious man, Kraust was Baron to a small fiefdom in the Western part of Ramalia. Dissatisfied by his inept and arbitrary rule the common folk also had good reason to fear him. As greedy as he was for material riches, Kraust was obsessed with the notion of hoarding life itself. With each night the air around his black tower hummed with evil magic and unnatural energies as he dabbled with necromancy and the Black Arts. 
The ceremonies grew more and more depraved until the peasants, driven by terror and desperation, gathered as a mob and marched on Kraust's residence. Pre-occupied with his studies, Kraust only became aware of the revolt as the flames licked at the door of his sanctum. Running for his life he escaped with terrible burns with only his robe about him.
He fled into the forest and wandered for days, cold, wet and hungry. Madness descended on him as he felt the life ebb away. Stumbling into a clearing, his last reserves of strength spent, Kraust lay down to die, alone and wretched.
Hours later he came to, a sybilent and insistent voice whispering in his head... 
Poor son of Earth, how couldst thou thus alone

Have led thy life, bereft of me?
I, for a time, at least, have worked thy cure;
Thy fancy's rickets plague thee not at all:
Had I not been, so hadst thou, sure,
Walked thyself off this earthly ball.
Why here to caverns, rocky hollows slinking,
Sit'st thou, as 'twere an owl a-blinking?
Why suck'st, from sodden moss and dripping stone,
Toad-like, thy nourishment alone?
A fine way, this, thy time to fill!
A blessing drawn from supernatural fountains!
In night and dew to lie upon the mountains;
All Heaven and Earth in rapture penetrating;
Thyself to Godhood haughtily inflating;
To grub with yearning force through Earth's dark marrow,
Compress the six days' work within thy bosom narrow,--
To taste, I know not what, in haughty power,
Thine own ecstatic life on all things shower,
Thine earthly self behind thee cast,
And then the lofty instinct, thus at last,
 to pluck the final flower!

Driven on by the voice Kraust staggered on until he came to a low mound. A ragged opening scowled at him as he approached the dread dark within. Once inside a hideous strength seemed to fill him, the voice grew louder, urging him on. Before him lay a long dead warrior clad in macabre armour. Bones encased its head and upper body, forming a terrifying visage. With hands he no longer controlled, Kraust reached out and with near skeletal fingers placed the gruesome helm on his head.

The voice ceased and then continued with renewed vigour. He screamed as the helm seemed to fuse with the very flesh of his gaunt face. The pain was mixed with elation as knowledge coursed through his brain - his studies of arcane books was immediately eclipsed as his head became filled with chaos.

And so was born the scourge of Mevion. Not forgetting his treatment at the hands of his serfs, Kraust returned to wreak bloody vengeance. It was to be a twofold punishment he meted out to those poor souls as their cadavers jerked back to unnatural life at a word from Kraust. News began to spread as his Undead horde grew, bolstered by foul chaotics attracted by the scent of death that followed him - Baron Kraust's band of lost souls was on the march!

Thanks by the way to Goethe for the quotations!


  1. Great writing Steve! Not only the Faust parts (had to google, I'm not very well-read), but yours too! =)

  2. Haha - cheers Phreedh - there's a frustrated English Literature graduate in me that doesn't get out much these days!

    I got the idea for his name and elements of the back story from Faust - made it a little gemanic so he sounded a bit more Empirey!

  3. Well, "borrowing" back story elements and names is in proper GW spirit! Just looking at some background for some samurai who'll pop up in the Stillburg campaign. Nippon fluff is cringeworthy... =( They could AT LEAST have changed the name a little, and maybe not have included Osaka and Kyoto?! =D

  4. Yeah the names they gave their samurai have to be taken with an unhealthily large dose of slat too!