The Fear-Scarred Priest


As part of a religious ceremony that celebrated your attainment of the level of clerical study that gave you access to the power to channel the divine might of your god through you, you opened yourself up fully to the god of knowledge and drew his power into you. With the ability to tap into the greatest secrets of the universe – to ask for any knowledge or skill – to know unknowable things, that fateful day, you asked your god for the gift of proficiency with the greatest secrets in the entire universe. Perhaps it was a little arrogant, but you thought it couldn’t hurt to ask… until it was given to you. You were struck with a vision. The vision was so horrific and so terrifying that you got up, screaming and broke the sacred circle, shattering the magic, ruining the ceremony.

You cowered for a week with the seering terror of the vision and you wouldn’t discuss its contents with anyone. And the dozen priests and wizards who tried to pry the vision from your mind went mad before they could get anything useful.

The wisest among the priests figured out something evil had happened, but that you weren’t possessed by any spirit or demon… you just had knowledge. And occasionally, knowledge drives men mad. You were taken before the most sacred oracle of the god of knowledge. She asked you to reveal what you had seen. You refused. You knew that if anyone learned what it was that you knew, the world would be one step closer to being utterly destroyed. Eventually, the oracle cleared everyone from the chamber and sealed it against all scrying… all invasions of prying… from any source, and she asked again. You refused again, knowing what knowledge you held. She use her god-given magics to pry the information from you, and terror gripped her. Now she understood… wisdom had finally come… too late.

She assured you that she’d protect you as long as she could. She ordered you to study scrying and divination magics such that no one could do with your mind what she had done. She ordered you to learn how to remove the knowledge from your mind without letting anyone know what that knowledge was… a feat unknown to any of the mages, priests, or shaman on this plane of existence.

When the oracle unsealed the chamber, she invited only one being in. The oracle instructed that you were to be given the most extreme sanction known to the order… You were to be cast out from the priesthood, your presence ever as one of its members was to be utterly deleted, and your entire existence scrubbed from its records. The oracle then charged her companion that the same treatment must be done for her… The creature bowed and confirmed that it would be done. The oracle then instructed that the stone she was about to create must be lost to the world for time immeasurable. The creature nodded. Next, the oracle pulled a large, black diamond from among her things and cast a hideous spell. The magic sucked the soul of the oracle into the gem, and the oracle’s body fell to the ground, a lifeless and limp husk.

Her last words to you were, “Anything is permissible and anything is good that keeps you alive and keeps your secret safe until you have discharged yourself from your quest… any act imaginable in the universe is permitted.”

The vision that haunts you is that you have seen the location of The Manual of Kaius, a dark tome of utterly unspeakable evil. The reason it haunts you is that you feel a link has been established between you and the tome. Another thing you know is that when you die, and your soul travels to the great beyond, those who can speak to the dead may have the ability to force you to reveal the secret. Should anyone learn your True Name, they would have the power to compel you to reveal this secret. You cannot allow yourself to die until you learn how to burn these memories from your soul. You must seek an answer to the riddle of how to investigate the matter without revealing what you’re looking for and why. Everything must be done to hide your intent. You cannot even whisper a hint of what you need lest foul things hear it and come looking…

You made your way to Magical Academy of Soros and began studies as a wizard to gain knowledge of how to scry the future so that you might escape this terrible information and this most horrid fate. As your skills in divining magics grew, you learned how easy it was to see other people, other places… and that the intensity of the desire to find, be found, or not be found… had a great deal of weight in the success of the scrying. All of the skill and knowledge that you gained as a mage terrified you further about the odds of your succeeding at what you knew you must do.

search previous next tag category expand menu location phone mail time cart zoom edit close