Found in a stone hut on the island of Taisidon, the corpse thought to belong to the man known as Bertoldt is more mystery than anything.
The desiccated corpse of an elderly Elothean man slumps over a book atop a desk beside the plank door, an ivory scribing quill still in his shriveled hand.
LOOK at corpse:
The man's sackcloth garments hang loosely around his blackened and shriveled frame. His empty eyesockets stare blankly.
This book is held in what is presumed to be the home of the man.
LOOK at book:
Most of the book's pages have been torn out. On the remaining page you see a passage written in dark ink, the last word merely a black trail across the yellowed parchment to the quill in the corpse's hand.
The page in the book reads:
"...and never come here again. But tis all one.
I, Bertoldt, without kin or apprentice, leave this humble script for those who may come after my soul's passing. I leave for ye, traveler, my life's vocation. I beg ye, keep it safe, for there are no others to carry on.
As a young lad, my father took me to the Lichyard and taught me the ways of the Ancients. That, traveler, I do not leave for chance to find. Some secrets may safely fade from these Realms.
I am Bertoldt, Digger of Graves.
I am Bertoldt, Keeper of the Circle of Fire, Heart of the Ancients.
I am Bertoldt, Protector of the Gates of the Ancients.
In my long life, I served the Ancients and their secrets while I dug graves in the stony soil for those whose gold fed me. "Digger" they called me, a ragged man with a broken shovel. Never did they call my name. Bertoldt, the Ancients called me.
I beg ye, traveler, keep safe the secrets that lie beyond the Heart of the Ancients. The foolish will enter Their Realm unprepared, the learned will follow Their ways.
Should ye dare seek what lay beyond Their Realm, ye must trust in the stars, for they are all that remains as ye know it in Their Realm.
Do not tarry on ye way, traveler, you do not bel...."
A large ink stain has ruined the rest of the page.