Logs on encounters with DC
Personal Log of Inquisitor Gautier Prieur
A new year, a new promotion and a new assignment. I am heading alone to the western forests of Boihaemum to investigate what a local ranger reported as undead sightings. The area is a heavily forested mountainous region with only a few hunting villages, a perfect spot for remnant zombies to have festered unnoticed.
A cold journey, but I have found the home of the ranger who contacted us but his home is empty. I will stay the night here and hope he returns in the morning.
No sign of the ranger tonight. Investigating this cabin leads me to believe he has not been here for a few days at least. The spoiled meat sitting on the counter and unlocked door point to this absence being unplanned on his part, or that he has had an accident or worse.
With the heavy snowfall I can’t determine any tracks, so I have begun searching the area around the ranger’s cabin.
I have been here over a week now and no sign of the ranger or any undead. It is rare to see them during such winters as they tend to freeze solid. I feel it is my duty to find out what fate this ranger met so I will remain at least a week more.
I write this entry inside what seems to be an old mine shaft about 3km south west of the ranger’s cabin. Inside are tracks and signs of recent use, possibly by the missing ranger. The detailed reports I read on this area mentioned no history of mining, and this shaft is certainly pre-war. Such an excavation would have taken a large labour force yet I see no signs of other structures outside the mine, or even any sign of roadworks. It is late and I will spend the night in the shaft and explore more in the morning.
My heat stone barely functioned last night, as if something had stolen away its energy. There is something evil about this tunnel and I will either destroy it, or at least return home with a detailed report.
No time to write over the last days. The mine is home to evil constructs of some sort, never read a report of anything like them before. Human sized long-limbed creatures with powerful clawed hands and thick fat bodies with a mockingly calm sort of white death-mask atop it all. They are not very fast, but there were a great number of them. I destroyed at least a dozen before having to retreat. Something faster chased me, thin and agile, body seemingly made of lacquered bone or polished white shell and a face like the other creatures. It wounded me, not even the armour of Girus could stand up to its claws. I have fallen back to the ranger’s cabin to write and sketch.
Wounds healed and my energy restored, I believe I have enough information to return to the nearest cathedral and call for aid, I will set out at once.
Two days into my journey and I find the way is blocked, a huge avalanche and rock fall has burred the pass. I will return to the cabin as it is my only shelter from this blizzard.
Food stocks at this cabin will last me, but I will not just sit in this cabin till spring, I will continue to confront and harass these monsters. I will attempt to collect the remains of one for study tonight.
I believe it was the agile one that previously bested me that I have struck down and brought back to the cabin for study.
torn sketch from reports
This creature is unlike any undead I have ever seen. There are only minimal amounts of organic tissue, most of the creature is some sort of extremely strong sort of bone. Elements of the creature’s anatomy look mechanical in nature, crafted rather than grown, but intermingle seamlessly with flesh and bone as if a natural part of its body. The powerful jaws do not lead to any sort of digestive system, only a small bladder filled with an odourless mundane chemical of some sort. Anatomy was never a primary field of my studies, but there appears to be a human-like brain within the skull, but its flesh and shape appear abnormal. During my dissection there was no blood, only a thick black fluid found in and around the soft tissues.
I returned to the mine to thin out the slower monsters, my plan was to whittle them down over a few days to the point where I could isolate one of them and bring them back to the cabin for dissection. My plan was going well and I destroyed over a dozen of the creatures when I encountered a new type of creature. It looked like a mythical centaur, but upon its head was a large triangular helmet and tattered silk veil. Daggers pinned fragments of cloth and paper covered in strange writing and diagrams to its body. The description sounds absurd but its appearance shocked me into panicked flight from the mines. There was a dark intelligence behind that veil that I dared not confront.
It has been many years since I have purged dreams from my sleep, but last night I had a vivid and obviously unnatural vision. Although I could not see it, I knew it was that centaur abomination speaking to me. It mocked my fear and commanded me to return and submit to it for punishment. When I awoke it took all my faith and training to resist returning to the mine for the punishment I so strongly felt I deserved. What is this centaur, and why does it appear as such? Deconstructing it rationally I can come up with a few theories as [next page missing]
Last night it came to me again, it was impressed with my resistance but continued to cleverly sow seeds of doubt and self-loathing in my mind… [page stained] …I of course rebuffed its pathetic attempts to sway me from my ironclad loyalties. I get a strong sense of hidden weakness and desperation from this creature, it is bluffing and I have seen through it, I set out to slay it immediately!
What was I thinking? I came all the way to the entrance of the mine before I realized I had been manipulated again. This thing wants me, and I must resist its trap.
More dreams, more battles of wills. How long can I stay strong?
I must slay this beast, this may be my last entry. My papers will be locked and I have left a note that they are to be returned to the nearest cathedral at once.
[block of text stained]…There I found a large circular room with some sort of magical stone in the centre. I have moved my camp here to better facilitate study.
I have found many magical tools and items of unknown origin, I do not believe they or these creatures are necromancer made. See the attached inventory list for all recovered items and descriptions. I have also had the chance to dissect more of these creatures, except the centaur who’s body vanished after it was slain. My current theory is that this centaur represents a yet unknown race of evil mages and that this place is some sort of base or observation post for their kind.
[Pages of logs missing or heavily stained between these points]
[Unknown date, continued from previous missing page]
…with the stone, which is what I believe was initially draining the magic from the area. Speaking with him more I have learned far more of their kind and their homeland, I certainly would not describe it as “dead”. Despite our sort of life having no place in their plans, there is something horrifically elegant about it all. I still believe these conversations are worth having and will continue.
“Them” is written on the back of this detailed sketch
I feel my self changed, possibly corrupted, I will have to seek absolution at the cathedral. It is time I go, but they do not want me to leave. I will use force again if needed, but I feel so weak.
I killed it finally, with one of the swords stuck in its own body. I have fled to the cabin and will attempt to make it out of the pass tomorrow when I have my strength back. The Church must know of the threat and ambitions of this “dead continent”.
No energy to write these days, they have me, I can feel my mind becoming like theirs. I still have some will here at the cabin. Why are they doing this? Were the necromancers not enough? If anyone finds my logs, bring them to the nearest cathedral at once and do not enter the mines! This is everything I was able to learn of them, perhaps it will be of use, perhaps they are all lies fed to me…
-They are extremely powerful, more so than anyone knows
-Their domain lies in the far north between our continent and the elve’s.
-They are the [page damaged], or at least what they have transformed them selves into
-They have one [ page damaged ] think or reason anything like ours
-They can not [ page damaged ] exists, which is why they seek to [ heavy stain ] everything.
-They were behind the [ page damaged ] power and corrupted them to their cause.
-Their intelligence [ page damaged ], destroy [ heavy stain ] and you destroy them!
-They gain [page torn, remainder missing]