The First Land Herald/421-04-26

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Article Number: BI40
Dateline: 421-04-26
THE CURSE OF THE ICEBOUND HEART

This afternoon the Crossing experienced a chilling onslaught from a host of assorted Asketian creatures. These beings beset the city from all sides and included wind hags, adders, wretches, banshees, and harbingers.


Crude pencil sketches of the aforementioned invasion force detail their specific physical makeup.

  • Hags/Wretches: Clad in the holy vestments, ancient in appearance, frail and emaciated. Crystal beads clatter with every moment from a silver chain at the belt.
  • Adders: Snakes nearly fifteen feet in length and the width of a fully grown human.
  • Harbingers: Stealth combatants armed with bone-tipped arrows, incredibly agile, covered in black tattoos. Gleaming amber eyes. Will attack from range.
  • Banshees: Spectres of the North Wind, disheveled ice-white hair, fading form. Require a Blessed weapon or Holy magic to harm. Two deadly attacks: a piercing wail that drains the spirit and a touch to the heart that delivers the Icebound Heart curse.
  • Note that these creatures ranged in difficulty but those other than the adders were considered quite difficult. Herald Navesi reported that they were often more difficult than warklins, likely in the range of storm bulls or higher.


Brave adventures set to the task of city-wide defense, many falling to a strange form of icy curse. The Herald witnessed this curse appearing as the result of an attack by the North Wind banshee. She reaches one spectral hand into the chest of her victim and squeezes the heart. Those stricken with the curse exhibit signs of fear, fatigue, pain, and cold. Their eyes frequently dart about, they may have a weary expression, frosty blue mist may expel from their nostrils, and their eyes or chest may glow blue. Citizens Skaen and Xionara reported that the attack was physical in nature, causing harm to the heart until death, upon which time an icy statue would appear next to the body. Witness Sophrona also told tales of Empaths contracting the curse from healing patients, and Mistanna reported contracting it from touching one of the statues, though she also stated that she was able to move bodies without harm, regardless of the statue creation. Cleric Azante reported that Resurrection of those who died of the curse did not present any issue, and afterward they were no longer cursed.

As far as the Herald can tell, there is no way to prevent the curse. Protection from Evil did not protect Herald Navesi from contracting the curse, and no witnesses came forward claiming to have resisted it once touched. The only known method to cure it at this time is the Uncurse spell.

Furthermore, this curse should not be mistaken for the second deadly attack of the Banshee: her wail. This wail tears at the spirit and may cause significant damage. Take special care here, as those dying a spirit death have great difficulty with the resurrection process and are forced to depart. Soul Shield can provide some reprieve from this dangerous scream, as can retreat to the safety of triage, where gentle music may soothe the soul.

To say the response to the invasion was chaotic would be a touch of understatement. While the attack did finally subside, a few notable lessons could be gleaned from the experience. Most notably, it remains important for healers and warriors alike to keep an active awareness of their health. More than once, Empaths sadly fell victim to the curse after having transferred it from a patient. At this time, it is advised that adventures take stock of their favor counts and seek guidance of the divine when finding that count lacking. Bards are requested in triage for their spirit-healing Hodierna's Lilt and their gentle minuets. Clerics may find it wise to offer Blessing, Soul Shield, and Uncurse services near to main triage. During this invasion, triage was located in the Empath Guild courtyard, and the Herald recommends a Clerical station be situated in the infirmary nearby. Keep watch, dear readers. I leave you with the words of a dying wretch, "Fear...the Night of Glory."


Marcul McRee-Rhyian
Assistant Reporter, The First Land Herald

Real Date: Unknown Date
Subject(s):
Asketi

Asketian harbinger

Azante

Bard

Bony wind wretch

Cleric

Crossing

Empath

Giant adder

Lesser North Wind banshee

Mistanna

Navesi

Ragged wind hag

Skaen

Xionara
Author(s):
Marcul