All of Unholy's NPCs (for his own convenience, still)
THE BROKEN HAND PLOT
The Broken Hand (†)
The Broken Hand is a group that was formed with the simple goal of uniting to spread their cruelty onto others. In life, they were savage tyrants, ambitious and power hungry, and all too eager to trade existence for more power. In unlife, their strength can seem powerful enough to snuff out hope...
But make no mistake, the Broken Hand are still vulnerable, still mortal, and still very much in danger of death. Each member knows this, laments it, and hates it. It drives them further and further into the dark depths.
The leadership of the Broken Hand, which in its entirety consists of dark cultists, necromancers and the undead, is made up of three individuals. The leader Lacaine the Undying, who boasts a body that will never truly die, is in actuality gifted with regeneration powerful enough to outpace most attacks in battle.
Lacaine in life was the son of a noble hero, and the brother of a noble druid, and by his hand his family has torn asunder, all in the name of power. He rules over the Broken Hand spreading misery and torment, and using his necromancy and benefactor he twists corpses and the unlucky living alike into monsters for his army.
The Duke Garnet, or the Lord of the Manor, is the second of the Broken Hand's leadership. In life a greedy noble who indulged in hedonism and longed for more, turning to demon worshipping for what he thought would be the power to indulge forever. Yet a brush with death made him understand exactly what was at stake.
In his manor, where he draws power through dark rituals, Duke Garnet sacrifices others in his place to buy time, appeasing dark demon masters and the Broken Hand's benefactor. In his manor, Garnet is seemingly immortal, killing him merely ends with him being resurrected and another dying in his place... on the surface.
In truth, he is kept alive by the same dark magic he has come to fear will damn him to eternal torture, and tries to appease them with the sacrifices who are extinguished in his selfish place. But with each death (or at least death state) he grows more and more exhausted, his body grows weaker, and his mind begins to shatter. Now he is on the edge of insanity.
Finally, the Inventor. A mad genius of sorts, but mostly a huge bastard. The Inventor has no real name that has been kept in any records, and has been around long enough to know how things work. He tinkers in plagues, poisons and new inventions to help his schemes, all of which end in mass death.
The Inventor is the closest thing the Broken Hand has to a face, recruiting new stock from mad cultists and desperate people, often with intention of turning them later into more of the undead that he aids Lacaine in creating en masse. An utter sadist, he delights in the pleasure that petty cruelty brings.
While not invincible, he is a powerful vampire, however he is kept from harm by the creation of hollow simulacrum-like clones that fight in his place. Each clone is far weaker than his true self, but allow him to oversee things without ever putting himself in danger. The Inventor shows a sort of cowardice, only fighting in his true form when he knows he can win.
Somewhere in the cold mountains, the Broken Hand plot and scheme. Each one believing that they will become truly immortal, and escape death forever. Hopefully the adventurers of Narfell can prove them wrong and put them in the ground once and for all.
Current Status: The Broken Hand was destroyed by adventurers. Duke Garnet was dragged to his eternal demise at the hand of his "business partners" while the Inventor's lair was raided by hunters who eventually vanquished him once and for all. Lacaine's connection to his dark benefactor was severed, and his lethal wounds finally brought him down. Without their leadership, the remaining Broken Hand minions are left without aim and direction.
Artemis Delemont, Henry Duran, Claire Edwards, "Trick" (†)
A group of adventurers who fought against the Broken Hand. Artemis Delemont, a druid and son of a noble Cormyr hero named Argent Delemont, was Lacaine Delemont's brother. Sacrificed so that Lacaine may gain his power, Artemis was brought back by priests, and has spent what feels like his entire life hunting his once loving brother across the land.
Henry Duran, Paladin of Helm, and Claire Edwards, a Ranger, traveled with Artemis during his initial adventures and search for Lacaine's mysterious power source. But when Claire was turned into a monster by the Broken Hand, Artemis fell into desperation, and Henry Duran began to lose hope. They were forced to abandon their quest.
Reappearing as Lacaine began to move in Narfell once more, Artemis and Henry were joined by Trick, a former prisoner and a halfling rogue who joined them in return for an early release. But of course, things never work out, and the group was again soundly beaten by the Broken Hand.
Now Artemis has been turned and Henry Duran lay dead at the hands of the Inventor, with Trick missing somewhere in the Giantspire. The final living Delemont has fallen, and the estate shall forever lay in ruins.
With any luck, adventurers may be able to find Trick, and perhaps discover the secrets he has learned during his time alone.
Current Status: After leaving Narfell, Trick was last seen in Cormyr reporting the deaths of his friends.
Misc 4: Knock on the Door (Far Scout Edition)
The Coyote is the working alias of a Far Scout within Peltarch with a knack for information gathering and a decent repertoire of assassination skills. Coyote has a reputation outside of Peltarch as an information broker willing to sell information to any faction who pays him enough, and while his prices are steep his skills are unquestionable. If Coyote doesn't know it, he will know it soon enough, or so the saying goes. With no loyalty to anyone but himself and his coin purse, Coyote is a valuable friend to have if you have money... just try not to spill the beans around him. Else those with money will soon know all your secrets...
Alias of one of the newer active Far Scouts under Coyote, known for his expert work in poisons and his love for "gas barrels" which are... pretty much exactly what they sound like. There are rumors that like Coyote he often sells out his services as a "scout" to other factions, but such things are clearly just rumors. Due to inhaling his own mixtures quite frequently he has a tolerance to them, but also claims he hasn't slept in over 3 years. Either way he's slightly odd. Tends to hire adventurers to hunt rare ingredients or set up his contraptions.
Simultaneously an expert at stealth and incredibly unstealthy. The Falcon is very good at stalking targets through civilization and the wilderness, but tends to announce himself loudly when he actually engages. More of a duelist than a traditional Far Scout, he fights flashily with a shining rapier, and has an almost chivalry-esq code of honor when it comes to combat, which perhaps explains his habit of announcing himself to his enemies. Like the others, there are rumors about their mercenary tendencies and secret shopping. Tends to hire adventurers to deal with problems he's self aware enough to know his way of combat would make troublesome.
Formerly a professional assassin working for the Elysium, a secretive assassin guild operating around Damara and other regions. Allegedly he's just there to do his job, and doesn't tend to hire himself out (or sell secrets) for profit. But the others in Coyote's group suspect that his real purpose, and the reason Coyote tends to keep him around within their circle, is to kill the others should they ever threaten Coyote's profitable ventures. The Jackal works surprisingly close with his niece, who he trains in the art of assassination. Doesn't hire adventurers, and only rarely shows up with Coyote if there is a threat of danger.
Another member of Coyote's inner circle of spies and cheats. The Octopus isn't actually a Far Scout, and is just the alias known to Coyote's men of a clerk within City Hall who has a particular knack for forgery and ensuring that some of the more troublesome things they get up to remain buried under red tape and misdirection. It is unknown if Coyote actually knows who exactly the Octopus is, due to the Octopus's paranoia in dealing with Far Scouts with "greedy hearts."
Tends to send out coded messages to specific adventurers (usually with rogue-ish or morally questionable backgrounds) when he needs some outside help, and pays the best of all of Coyote's circle. But his missions tend to be espionage related, with a lot of deniability and the risk of being left by yourself in a dangerous situation if things get out of control.
Devil in Plain Sight Plot
In life, a dark wizard, and in death a dark soul. The Mastermind is the devious formerly Avernus-trapped soul who schemed out an escape with his allies. Through a mostly unknown means, the Mastermind spearheaded a successful escape and found a new body to hide from prying eyes. Absolutely ruthless in his quest to escape death, he is willing to kill thousands just to save himself. Last seen in the body of a sailor...
A former Zhent brute known for carrying out intimidation and executions in order to keep rabble in line. The Enforcer is a sadist who enjoys his work and loves hurting people. Escaping along side the Mastermind to avoid his fate, the Enforcer was last seen inside of a dwarf on the bluff... now hiding among the rest and biding his time until he can figure out where to go from here.
In life a gambler, a cad, a rake and a card shark. In death, even without his pretty face on display, he still has a habit of getting what he wants. The Charmer is self absorbed and sociopathic, willing to rob from the rich to give to himself, and then rob from the poor because he's still craving more. All while giving you an absolutely charming smile. Luckily, he's not the most cunning sort, and is easily manipulated, even by his so called "allies" as it were. Last seen in the body of a Far Scout.
The Fourth Escapee
The last soul to escape Avernus, but the only one with little information going as to who they are or where they are now. Described as "kind of an asshole" and confirmed to have escaped along side the others. But where is he now? Last seen... never.
Another escaped soul, having fled along side the slain monk, Nathelin. This soul took the body of a deceased Cerulean, killed in a previous encounter. Finding Narfell familiar, but unable to remember their identity, the Cerulean indulges in matters of the flesh, eating, drinking and whoring to enjoy a life he can't remember and is afraid he will never get back if his "jailers" ever find him again. Unlike the others, he is not particularly malicious, but isn't exactly helpful. He just wants to stay free.
The Tower of Fog Plot
There are many ways to earn the adoration of the masses. Listen closely, give them what they want, or if you're particularly crafty convince them what you're selling is all they need. For Cole, it was enough to give them something to hate. Something to unify the masses under his banner, with promises of crushing a threat that may have never existed in the first place. And through blinding hate, they'd never realize that the true threat to their existence was the man they trusted without question.
Cole is a tyrant, and makes no real attempt to hide this. His spies sit on every corner street peddling wares in rags, or beside you in a tavern on a rum soaked, salt air filled night. His city watch patrol the foggy streets with dark eyes watching you closely, daring you to make any move what so ever that would allow them to enforce Cole's Justice upon you. Even those who stand above the unwashed masses are not safe... one wrong word and you can watch your entire legacy go up in flames.
As for the tyrant, he sits upon a dark iron throne overlooking his domain. A hunger inside of him, like a void dragging all light around it deep into the abyss, drives him forward. More... more thralls, more territory, more conquest, more destruction of those who oppose him. Not to craft an empire to rival the Nars, not to bring order or stability, not even for the sake of being the most powerful man alive. But because the act of conquest is a drug that the tyrant cannot resist.
Indeed, were the realm to fall into his grasp and the borders of his nation span endlessly into the realms beyond... he would merely burn it to cinders. So that, in this new world of ash and ruin, he could conquer it all again. Eternally feeding a void that'll never be satisfied. Always... always wanting more.
The official records of the Raven state that she is a dangerous extremist and political opponent to the rightful King. That she is an agent of the Eldreth Veluuthra, and a mastermind of numerous attacks upon the righteous citizens of the realm, all to get across a message of fear. But the unofficial records tend to paint her in a more sympathetic light... sometimes. The Raven is the mastermind behind the Raven's Flock, essentially the only resistance movement still existing withing Cole's Realm.
In part thanks to an extensive propaganda movement, Cole managed to successfully demonize the elves after the Eldreth Veluuthra's attack on the festival of Lliira's Night, a brutal attack that left a good portion of the noble community dead, including many home grown heroes and role models attending the celebration. The end result was not pretty, with a complete racial outcasting of all elves (and some half elves) within Cole's domain.
While, officially, this knee jerk reaction was lessened soon after and elves ARE technically allowed to exist within his borders... the fact of the matter is it's not a very good idea. Either cordoned off into some of the worst districts within his iron coated city, or vanishing after a visit from the Watch, your life is not a particularly happy and lengthy one. And so the Raven tirelessly works to protect "her" people, her flock. Even as she bloodies her hands over and over to do so.
The old saying, of course, is he who fights monsters. And the Raven teeters on the edge of becoming exactly what Cole wants.
The Pure Flame Plot
The Black General (†)
The Black General is an old tale, a cautionary warning towards zealotry and overwhelming faith without reason or restraint, without question. A reminder to every priest to truly understand their purpose and their god, lest they become a victim of insanity. The story goes that the Black General was once a man who served Kossuth, who began to hear a voice he believed was his beloved deity and who, spurred on by this holy voice, began a holy conquest to purify "heretics" and enemies.
He was eventually caught after causing the deaths of everyone who had ever loved and trusted him and burned at the stake, where he was aflame for over an hour before the fired died out and he remained... alive and furious. It is said that he swore vengeance on those who sought to kill him, and their bloodlines, but in his new form was cursed to never have a man truly serve him loyally, as he had betrayed loyalty too much in the past.
And so it was that the Black General turned to those that had no choice but to serve, the desperate, the foolish and the greedy. His armies were said to consist of the vulnerable and the cruel, with no loyalty to him, but loyalty to either themselves, a deep seated desire or to the purifying flame that embraced all. The purifying flame that many of these naive soldiers would eventually come to face as the Black General eventually turned on them.
After all, to the Black General, the perfect world is one of fire... and ash.
Of course records of an actual Black General are non existent, and the moniker itself is pretty generic, leading to many assuming it is either an amalgamation of various historical figures, or just a fictional tale. But if it is a fictional tale, then the Black General who currently resides in Narfell is a true fan of the story, as his work is almost directly identical to the legend of the Black General.
Waging a brutal war against Narfell, having already burned several villages to the ground, the Black General's schemes and scheming underlings have attempted a variety of methods to wipe out their enemies, including non combatants, including poisoned grain and the more traditional burning and pillaging. The Black General himself tends to announce their presence during the raids, though has never directly fought with the forces he marshals.
A true zealot to the cause, the Black General's primary forces are part of the Disciples of Purification, a heretical offshoot of the Monestic order of the Purifying Flame, who forgo the concept of balance, by believing that true "purity" comes from the absolute annihilation of corruption and ignorance. What this essentially boils down to is quite literally just purging anyone who isn't them. They are considered outcasts even by most of their peers, not because of their cruelty, but because their extreme zealotry means not even their brothers are safe from irrational judgement.
Current Status: The Black General lay defeated and his reign of terror has come to an end. In the end his true identity died with him, if he even remembered it himself.
Majordomo Hakuro (†)
The general portrayal of a Fire Giant is one of a master craftsman and warrior who wishes to test his mettle against worthy foes. Hakuro, however, is no standard portrayal. A being of cunning and cowardice rather than strength and metal, Hakuro got to where he is through schemes and trickery. Once called Hakuro the Gnarled for his somewhat weak body, Hakuro rose up through societies ranks by stealing the works of his peers, an act which eventually saw him outcasted.
Hakuro serves as the Black General's Majordomo, overseeing civic duties and negotiations (though the Black General rarely has use for either) and marshalling his forces, turning a mix of monsters and rabble into a coherent army. Hakuro is a devious sort, whose sadism and love of holding power over others is also his weak point, he is easily goaded, and believes himself to be far more brilliant and invincible than he truly is. Despite this, he is not a person to be taken lightly.
Current Status: Betrayed like so many others, Hakuro was twisted and controlled by his dark master and eventually slain by adventurers.
A member of the Arcane Brotherhood, a group shrouded in mystery, specifically the "Eastern Tower" section. Torbraxu is a rather secretive person, even among a group known for its secrecy, keeping to himself and only accepting people into his personal powerbase that he has vetted repeatedly. He is said to be rather paranoid and suspicious, keeping his cards close to his chest, and never lets feelings get in the way of success.
Torbraxu is known for putting his research above everything, including his personal safety. Willing to destroy himself, others and honestly the whole world if it's what it takes to see the results, he has a very obvious one track mind and once he starts up it's hard to stop him. Torbraxu's only known living family is a son who turned to piracy to spite his father, though it is whispered that Torbraxu has never really reacted to this.
In fact, it's rumored Torbraxu barely recalls he has a son, treating him with the same emotional detachment that he treats everyone else. Nobody has the willpower to ask him directly, though.
Current Status: Dead after a rad mecha fight. The Arcane Brotherhood may not take too kindly to his demise.
Bounty Hunters (†)
With the Arcane Brotherhoods bounty attracting a carnival of killers, several notable members of the hunting and assassination community have come forward to try their luck on collecting the money on "The Little Blue Star" "The Arcane Whirlwind" and "The Dark Councillor" with very little success. Of course big money attracts stupid people who aren't usually deterred by such things like "dying" and "dying horribly"
These hunters include people like Victory, leader of the black clad mercenaries creatively called... well... Black Company. A militant group operating to the east of Narfell who have already tried their luck and failed, taking a significant loss in the process. Victory is a true professional, and a pragmatist, willing to admit defeat and cut his losses when it's clear that the risk outweighs the reward.
Blackeye, a "middle man" in the bounty hunting community, in the sense that he hooks up hunters with contracts that may not be on the open market. Blackeye has come with a cadre of killers to claim a bounty on the Little Blue Star, due to Blackeye's personal loathing of halflings. Why? Well there's a lot of rumors about why, including having lost a girlfriend to a halfling before. But who knows? He's sort of crazy. It could be nothing!
But it is the final group that is truly worth taking notice of. The Elysium, a group of absolutely high class professionals who are only generally hired out to incredibly wealthy clients. The Elysium are second to none when it comes to security and secrecy. Their members wear special suits that explode upon death or capture, taking the agent with it, and a variety of spells keep their men genuinely in the dark about what they do to ensure no compulsions can ever pry the secrets from their minds.
The Elysium only appear to hunt targets worthy of their time, and after repeated failures by ordinary Bounty Hunters and Assassins, it's rumored that Torbraxu and his peers have sent out a contract to hire Elysium to take on the three Narfellian bounties and put them in the grave once and for all. Time will tell who comes out on top.
Current Status: The bounty has been called off. The Elysium operates within Narfell at full capacity.
MISC 3: REVENGE OF THE SITH
The "Mad Inventor" and a friend of Pious, who appears to be from a distant land with his dusky skin and golden hair. Virtue is an inventor and a very obvious eccentric, playing games with others in return for prizes of his own invention, and operating several businesses that prey on the greed of others. He is whimsical and marches to the beat of his own drums, even at the cost of everyone else's sanity.
Outside of his whimsical nature, Virtue is rather jaded. He often speaks bitterly about idealism and has a very low opinion of self righteous people. This, plus his metal arm replacing whatever organic arm he used to have, point to obvious scars in his past that haven't fully healed. Scars that often become bloody when he is reminded of what he used to be... whatever it is he used to be.
A firebrand noble from Waterdeep, noted for being unafraid to say what is on her mind and being notorious for once wound her (now former) fiancee in the groin with a sword for cheating on her and robbing her family of its coin. She finds herself in Narfell now, pursued by the enigmatic and dangerous Illusionist, but why? That's yet to be revealed, but it's clear Altea won't take his threats lying down. She is often followed by the "Dark Knight" a strange, dark armored bodyguard.
The Silver Knight Suzail (a title he calls himself) and a wandering... something. Pious is an odd character, with a fascination for art and a slightly more morbid fascination for death. Pious has never been seen out of his clanky silver armor, which is often coated in various forms of paint or muck. He speaks oddly, and often to himself, but sometimes he forgets to speak at all and just has very awkward silences. All in all Pious is a very odd individual.
Pious is responsible for the Dapper Man statue among other things, a weird statue that pops up occasionally in Peltarch as if out of thin air. During the day the fine features of that noble man smile brightly, but at night the candles placed around the statue give it a nefarious looking expression. When asked what the deeper meaning behind this statue is, Pious tends to shrug it off or ramble. Truth is he does that about a lot of things.
Pious is followed by an entourage who are never too far from him. It include the Crusaders, two golden knights who are often mistaken for paladins, who never speak and follow his every whim. There is one male and one female, though their exact relationship to each other and Pious is unknown. It also includes Joan, a red headed bodyguard wielding a truly sharp greatsword, who often delivers messages for Pious and has a wicked glare in her one good eye.
A newcomer to Oscura, whose nobility comes from "parts unknown" and who shepherds wealth towards Oscura due to what he claims are plans to make it into "a new Skullport" of some kind. Much known about Crow is rumors, as despite his rather lavish parties that he loves to throw, he tends to keep to himself and is cautious about giving information about his past. Crow tends to work through his men when it comes to hiring outside help, adding to his reclusive enigma feeling.
To his employees (be they contracted or adventurers) he pays handsomely and acts benevolently, giving them "creative control" in their dealings and allow a lot of free reign. He forgoes intimidation and the fear factor if he can avoid it, running counter to the usual Oscuran stereotype, which can make it easy to forget that above all else Lord Crow is a ruthless business man with big ambitions. He is still very capable of performing cruel acts to get what he wants.
Chain Breaker (†)
An Oscuran annoyance. Some believe the Chain Breaker is someones daughter with too much time on her hands, while others believe she is a foreign infiltration expert... and some just believe she's an idiot. The Chain Breaker is an anti slaver who claims to have broken slaves free from Athkatla to Thay. The truth to the extent of her career is fuzzy, but she has at least been active in Narfell for long enough that people have begun to speak of her title with... mixed emotions.
The Chain Breaker is rather abrasive and acts her age, seeming rather young, she can be petty and childish and tends to hold grudge against people who irritate her. None the less she has some cunning to her, coming up with (sometimes needlessly) complex plans to free slaves and hurt their masters in the process, usually via their coin purse. She is also an adept fighter, having actually managed to fend off anyone who physically confronts her.
The ethics of slavery aside in this realm of ours, of course, the Chain Breaker continues to be a divisive figure. Often times her plans end up with others getting hurt and being manipulated by the firestorm that is her personality, and sometimes these people are not her "intended targets" as she calls them. She claims such things are necessary in her righteous crusade, but it has earned her quite a few enemies. It almost feels like it won't be long until it catches up with her...
Current Status: Slain by Verika Evrilla for crimes against Oscura.
A long deceased demonbinder from ages past. Tazmordan was an intelligent man whose intellect was only matched by his inhumanity, performing cruel experiments with the aid of demons and dark magic alike. He did these experiments with complete detachment, showing no love for sadism or pain, just cold logic. Tazmordan's name was lost to history, having died in total obscurity, partially by his own will.
Before he died, Tazmordan crafted a variety of inventions he called the Steps of Tazmordan, some of which could be used for constructive purposes but... well most of these "steps" were in fact deadly weapons. For reasons unknown, some suggesting that he didn't want his weapons used for further evil, but others suggesting he just didn't want anyone using his weapons, Tazmordan locked away all of the Steps of Tazmordan within vaults and other secure locations, most of which were lost to ruin.
Sometimes, however, foolish adventurers led by ambitious men stumble upon Tazmordan's work, and echoes of his past. And every time, their lives are put in danger. In the end, nothing good comes from digging up the past of the Ice Hearted Demonbinder.
The Dapper Man
War in the Trees Plot
Grothel the Exile
In his younger years, Grothel Headtaker was a savage and vicious bugbear with immense strength and little to think about. Grothel never particularly liked being ordered about, let alone ordered to give away the things that he owned. He wanted everything, the things that he had and the things that others had, and he wanted to be on the top of the totem pole. As such, Grothel sought to usurp his superior, but found only that his strength only seemed immense in contrast to those he had fought. Grothel was soundly beaten, humiliated even, and kicked out into the night. This was another form of humiliation, after all, they could have killed him... they just chose not to.
Years of exile have done a number on Grothel. First his bloodlust, and then his sensibilities. Having little and struggling to gain anything made him respect what he did have. Spending so much time avoiding things that could defeat him taught him patience, and conversely having more time on his hands on quiet nights meant that Grothel had time to read the books and items he had stolen from travellers.
Soon, "Grothel the Exile" was considered a well read sage-like figure by those who would visit him, bringing him supplies in return for wisdom or the unique mixtures he had learned to brew. When Grothel was offered new places, in new hierarchy and tribes, he turned them down. Not because he did not want to be led, but because he knew that his lot in life was to be alone, to exist in the forest by himself.
As bitter blood spreads between the goblinoids, and the lustful lure of power calls to them, Grothel stands on the edge watching inward, seeing too much of his past self for comfort. But he will not bring himself to intervene... or rather, perhaps it's better to say he cannot bring himself to intervene. To get close to his old home. Lest he fall back into his old ways.
Every so often a goblin is born with an unusually cunning mind and the determination and willpower to use it. For a goblin, Halftooth is unusually charismatic and far before he ever proclaimed himself Warchief, he had a strong core group who would do what he said without question. Dwelling in the Hold not far from Norwick, Halftooth first gained an utter contempt from Norwick when a band of adventurers cut down his siblings and almost killed him, chipping his tooth (and gaining him his new monikor) but forgetting to check if he was truly dead.
Nursing a spiteful vengeance that only grew worse when he began to get kicked around by those who saw him as fodder, Halftooth continued to gain loyal allies not only within the Hold, but also from other goblin tribes from the surrounding areas. Eventually, as things hit a boiling point in the Rawlinwoods, Halftooth made his move and declared himself "Warchief of Goblins" with his new green horde.
While some in this up coming dispute may see Halftooth as a tiny runt of an upstart whose only quality is arrogance and a green tide to send dying one after the other, the truth is Halftooth is far more intelligent than his opponents give him credit for. Rumors spread that he has even found benefactors, human benefactors at that, willing to arm him with dangerous explosive weaponry to tip the tide in his favor... benefactors who bears the mark of the Black Hand.
Gringat Mirkblood, he of many poisons, is a goblin assassin who founded the Twisted Blades, a likeminded group who would assassinate for riches, named after Mirkbloods enchanted weapons. Mirkblood was a pragmatic sort, and a cowardly sort, who'd take missions from just about any race but would always ensure he could get away if things went wrong, even at the cost of his fellow Twisted Blades. He seeks treasure and status, with power being a distant second.
So it's rather odd that Mirkblood and the Twisted Blades have made it clear they intend to throw their lot in this growing turbulence. Whispers have it that Mirkblood isn't exactly fond of ruling himself and owes a deep debt to some dangerous individuals. Individuals whom Mirkblood repeatedly sends warm bodies to. Who are these shadowy people? Some say the Drow, but nobody is truly sure.
Cruel, savage and selfish. Grayback represents the worst a bugbear can possibly be. Valuing pillaging and destructing over conquering, Grayback seeks to do what Ostromog should have done, capture Norwick... and burn it to ash. And if there's time, he'll stake the survivors up high for all to see. Grayback's men consist of the young and impressionable goblinoids, as well as older ones looking for a good fight or some good old fashioned human blood spilling. Their savage strength can wash over the unprepared, leaving only destruction in their wake.
A young bugbear follower Ostromog. Zulvark honors the old bugbear even as age has slown him down to a crawl. Zulvark seeks to emulate Ostromog, but tends to be rather overzealous and lacks Ostromog's general skillset, coming off as rather impressionable and somewhat easily manipulated. None the less, there are many who throw their lot behind Zulvark, many others who honor Ostromog and his ways, and seek to keep them going even once the inevitable happens.
Evird is a proud hobgoblin who emulates their ways well. Militaristic, disciplined and pragmatic to his core, Evird seeks primarily to stop chaos from unfolding as ambitions rise and greed takes over. Evird's pragmatism extends to his way of fighting off his rivals, willing to work with adventurers and former enemies in the name of defeating mutual threats. But Evird is still a dangerous person himself, capable of ruthlessness and cruelty in the name of victory.
Evird's men are undyingly loyal and rigid. They follow him into battle without hesitation.
THE LICH PLOT
There are many reasons a spellcaster chooses to become a lich. Some fear death, some wish to extend their lives to complete their goals, and some do it just to prove that they have the power to do so. For Darius, becoming a lich was a means to an end, to continue his lifes work, only to find some years into his new lifestyle... that he really didn't care anymore. Left listless and theoretically eternal, Darius grew bored.
Darius was always good at being cruel, and was always evil even when his heart was still pumping blood through a body that has long since been rendered... skeletal. But boredom causes the mind to wander, and the wandering mind of a cruel man can come up with some inventive and disturbing ways to harm others. At the drop of a hat, Darius can do things to mortals that no sane man would think of, not because it excites him but merely because... well, he can.
Yet Darius is a strange creature, in that he carries himself with a weird amount of (hollow) humanity. He plays cards, indulges in drinking despite not really having any use for it, and skins humans to wear their pelts in order to "fit in" with a natural look, because just magically disguising yourself isn't horrific enough. The charm he puts on as he lives the day to day as a sleazy human is surprisingly convincing.
But at the end of the day for all of Darius's desires, both the wanton cruelty in which he slaughters and the nights he spends indulging in taverns and the arms of drunkards who can't stop singing, he is a lich who has outlived his lifes work, and is utterly ridden with boredom. And may the gods help anyone who truly interests this utterly brutal lich.
Current Status: Left his cult to an unknown figure within Narfell, and went to explore other planes of existence... and kill things there for fun. Occasionally returns to shower his minions in alien objects.
The Five (†)
A group of paladins uniting to fight against great evils and small evils alike, the Five have discarded their names (at least while on the hunt) to symbolize that their actions are far more important than who they are as individuals. The Five are loyal, strong willed and selfless to their cores, the ideal paladins who will not be swayed from the path of righteousness. Their numbers are as followed.
One, not quite the leader but the most analytical of the group, and thus the closest thing to a leader. A Paladin of Tyr, who greatly values order and strategy. One can come across as dispassionate because of his rather subdued demeanor, only emoting in minor ways, and generally keeping his calm. However he is as dedicated to protecting the weak and destroying evil as anyone in the Five.
Two, the Paladin of Helm, is a more outgoing and casual sort. Quick to joke and prod his peers, Two is none the less the iron wall that protects his allies from his enemies. Two is notorious for being rather unlucky, despite his blessings of Helm usually getting him through the worst of it, with Two often falling to various misfortunes such as curses and traps placed every which way.
Three, the Paladin of Torm, is the more passionate of the group. He believes strongly in their cause, and is the first to try and rush into battle to defeat his foes, as well as the first to try and give a speech. He can be hot headed when pushed, but can be reigned in by those who fight along side him. He has a particularly deep seated hatred for necromancers, due to his own past traumas.
Four, the Paladin of Kelemvor, is a silent member who rarely seems to interact with anyone. He is still a paladin, a righteous warrior, and still invested in keeping the realm safe. But his lack of speech and the general distance he keeps from others can make him feel rather foreign, and he comes across as very hard to read. Whether he even views the others as friends is something one could probably debate.
Five, the original, was a Paladin of Ilmater and a half orc. Known as the Scarred Paladin by some, he strove to take injuries meant for others to spare them the pain he felt. He perished at the hands of the Fives enemies, but died heroically, and is remembered fondly.
With his death, the fifth seat opened up, and the Five convened to recruit a new member... Warziver... as their fifth. With their numbers restored, the Five hope to continue their crusade against evil, and unite those who fight for justice against those who fight for injustice.
Current Status: Deceased, souls used as a barrier to protect adventurers from an overwhelming dark force.
THE ILLUSIONIST PLOT
The Red Wizards (†)
Of all the Red Wizards to face the Illusionist, Luther has always been the most compassionate. Unusually kind for a Red Wizard, although no less ambitious, Luther is a good example of power not always corrupting, at least not entirely. Luther is the most accepting and helpful of his peers, being open to working with others while keeping minimal secrets, and still offering aid to those that don't wish to associate with Red Wizards.
However Luther's neurotic personality is his downfall, as he is often unable to control his emotions and is prone to panicking or not thinking things through. As such Luther generally leaves the leadership role to his partner Khardan, or to Jadus, and only shows initiative when the danger is low and the situation isn't dire.
Khardan is a classical Red Wizard, who hordes magical artifacts and schemes with the best of them. Considered ruthless and cunning, Khardan is a brilliant mind who is somewhat hampered by a lack of empathy, seeing his research as far more important than lives and discarding people all too easily. He does not suffer fools, which often leads to him dismissing others on first impression.
Reki, the youngest of the anti Illusionist force, is a firebrand (somewhat literally) of the highest order. He is the very stereotype of the storybook Red Wizard, vicious and cruel, arrogant and self centered and wielding powerful destructive magic. He lusts for violence, and engages in wanton slaughter with reckless abandon much to the chagrin of his peers. Reki had a sister, his only redeeming quality was his affection for her, and her death in the Convict Slaughter drove him to the brink.
Reki met his end, temporarily, at the hands of Erurk and a group of adventurers. Believing Erurk to be responsible for his sisters death, Reki refused to hear him out, and ultimately paid the price for it. Brought back by his peers, Reki is chained both metaphorically and literally, as they seek to drain the fight out of him and turn him into something more obedient and less... of a pain in the ass.
Finally, Jadus, the most powerful of the four and a Diviner. Jadus is a detached individual who rarely thinks about the world on the same level as most, instead keeping his focus on bigger things. This makes him seem rather... disinterested, and also uncaring. Jadus will occasionally play Kingmaker for the others, but otherwise he will stay out of their arguments and bickering. Jadus seems to know the most about the so called Hand of Leira, but keeps his cards close to his chest.
Current Status: Slaughtered by the Illusionist's schemes. Jadus revealed a traitor, and punished accordingly by adventurers.
Warden Cole (†)
Warden Cole was, before becoming a Warden, a prisoner in that very same prison. A skilled assassin, Cole made a habit of shaming his captors by killing them just to prove he could. He survived numerous attempts to kill him and be done with it, and eventually his determination and persistence was enough to give his captors such a headache they offered him power over the other prisoners just to keep him sitting still. Warden Cole proved to be a very ruthless man on either side of the bars.
When the Prison Break occured, it was Cole who aided the Hand of Leira in collecting Khardan's prized tablet piece and rallied the prisoners to his cause. And unlike the prisoners, who believed their savior was a half orc named Erurk, Warden Cole saw the Hand for who he really was, even glancing upon his visage. Cole shows unusual loyalty to the Hand, be it a natural loyalty or a forced one (it's hard to say) and leads the rampaging Convicts of Camp Freedom in his name.
Current Status: Slain, along side many of his elite "prisoner forces"
The Hand of Leira / The Illusionist
A mysterious individual and culprit of many strange and confusing events. The Hand of Leira is identified by his symbol, Leira's symbol bastardized by an open hand in the middle. Very intelligent but also unpredictable, the Hand of Leira uses powerful arcane magic to weave confusion and disarray for goals known only to him and his closest allies. Every word from his mouth comes from a silver tongue, which rarely if ever tells anything more than a half truth.
Contrary to his original alias of the Illusionist, he is not necessarily a proper Illusionist, showing adept skill in the rival school of Enchantment, having enthralled and dazed many of the humanoids, such as orcs and hobgoblins, prowling around Narfell to use as a patchwork army. Regardless of his actual teachings, he is clearly a powerful mage, capable of dangerous spells, and his complete unpredictability means that he is incredibly hard to outmaneuver.
Current Status: He's still here. And he has not forgotten.