Curse of Strahd

Background Hook

The players start out in a small village called Woodpine, on the far outskirts of Phlan along the moonsea. The village has roughly 100 people living there. The townmaster Ered Leofhelm has posted a notice about a reward. A stable boy by the name of Davork has gone missing. The townsfolk noticed strange tracks outside the stable on the night of his disappearance. A few adventures such as yourself have answered this plea for aid by the townmaster.

Player Cast

This information is considered player knowledge and not character knowledge.

Athllorantier Aedoth

Athllorantier_Aedoth_Klaze

Player: Klaze
Race: Changeling
Class: Bard

Bio

He is a High Elf, born into one of the wealthiest families in Sildëyuir. He had a very privileged childhood and was being groomed as the successor, as the only child - of his Father’s forestry company. It was not until puberty hit that he found out about his Changeling ability, and when he confronted his father about it, it was revealed that he was the product of his father, and a changeling replicating his mother during birth, as his mother was sterile. He eventually came to terms with this and continued his privileged life, and during his education, he learned to play instruments. He was eventually regarded as a child prodigy when it came to his ability to play nearly every instrument to perfection.

He was now 17 years old, and started to grow tired of the monotone life of school, musical practice and sleep. As such, he started to practice his changeling ability, and at first, he used it to prank his friends and relatives. But as time went on, he used it for increasingly more malicious means.such as framing people he disliked for petty crimes they didn’t commit, increasing gradually in severity, eventually turning into full-blown murder and rape.

He had now perfected his changeling ability, and used it routinely to slander his father’s business competitors, and had been visiting brothels in disguise, framing them of child-labor, underpaying their workers, and so on. This eventually led to a private investigation on him, and during a visit to a brothel, where he was too drugged-up to be careful of his surroundings as per usual, he was found out as the culprit. A day later he had no choice but to hide, and it was only due to the huge walls and personal guards that the villa hadn’t already been raided. His father then led him into the basement, where he had a portal, one which he originally used to acquire the Changeling used to birth him, and in the nick of time, he escaped.


Dosha Annes

Player: Mimic
Race: Dragonborn
Class: Paladin


Brendan the Great

Brendan_Wintermute

Player: Wintermute
Race: Human
Class: Wizard

Bio

Brendan the Great (Brendan) is very secretive about his past. It is unclear if he has ever had any family, had any place to call home, or lived any differently than he does today. What we can say for sure is that he lives in a state of disarray (dark days and even darker nytes, sleeping on hay bales or beneath the open sky if he has to), he has spent years studying Alchemy and the Arcane Arts, and he has no arms or legs.

In his studies he has come across repeated references to a shady group of spellcasters, nicknamed “The Grove,” whom he believes to be practicing blood magic, human sacrifice, child abuse, and all variety of other dark things. He has never met this group nor does he have any indication they exist aside from faint murmurings in the ancient texts. Nonetheless, stopping the Grove and preventing their misdeeds is his primary motivation for embarking on this adventure.

Brendan is inherently distrusting of people who are different from him. Other races, other castes, other ideologies. He is known to speak in acronyms when he meets these people, especially if he believes them to be agents of the Grove, insulting them with odd combinations of letters and words they do not understand.

He may need some of your assistance in the coming campaign. He can, after all, not walk. He also has no arms to carry himself. Just know that he will never ask for it, for, despite his shortcomings, he is fiercely independent.


Kato

Kato_Big_benny

Player: big-benny
Race: Tabaxi
Class: Monk


Fade

Player: jones
Race: Aasimar
Class: Bard


Jūnter Hīllsōn

div_Junter

Player: ilmemmerdelui
Race: Dwarf
Class: Fighter


Hunter Jilsen

Jilsen_NMAGANE

Player: Nmagane
Race: Goblin
Class: Monk


Mukk the Marred

Player: bazingaboy
Race: Half-Orc
Class: Barbarian

Bio

Mukk was considered to be cursed from birth. When his mother got sick he became enraged when the priest said there was nothing he could do to help. Mukk believed that the Priest was intentionally being unhelpful due to Mukk’s supposed curse. When his mother died from the sickness Mukk confronted the the priest and killed him on the spot in the ensuing struggle. Upon the spilling of the priests blood Mukk was bound to the Priest’s staff and must carry it everywhere he goes. If he destroys it the staff appears once more, unscathed and spotless as if mocking Mukk. Mukk has been tortured by recurring nightmares that could be caused by the Priest or by guilt itself.


Ted Kersplinksy

SCSF_TED

Player: SCSF
Race: Triton
Class: Druid

Bio

I worked as a groundskeeper along the ocean floor beneath the Moonshae Isles. One day I stumbled upon a shipwrecked vessel, while tending to my duties. Inside that vessel was a tome full of forbidden knowledge that spoke of a tragedy that will come to pass in the near future. I left my lifelong duties of cleansing the polluted ocean and maintaining the balance to seek out allies to stop this looming threat. I can only hope I am not to late…


Trailyn Virtuous Audi Cabla

Trailyin_KORBRM

Player: Korbrm
Race: Shardar-kai Elf
Class: Ranger

Bio

Trailyn was born into an affluent Shader-kai family in the Shadowfell. Both his parents were high-ranking agents for the Raven Queen and for that reason, his family moved back and forth from the material plane to Shadowfell. Trailyn learned at a young age not to get close to anyone as he would soon be taken away from them without a moments notice.

Once Trailyn journeyed out on his own, he kept his sheltered nomadic tendencies until he ran into a beautiful Shader-kai elf by the name of Helayna. Helayna was finally able to keep Trailyn from continually moving between cities, and for once, he was okay with it.

Everything seemed perfect for few years, but Trailyn should have known that something good will never last. And just as quickly as Helayna came into his life, she was ripped away from him.

Trailyn was awoken one night by a blood-curdling scream. As he sprung out of bed, he was horrified to see Helayna’s body being held 8 feet in the air by what seemed to be a jagged shadow in the shape of a massive humanoid. The shadow slowly slit his Helayna’s throat and then threw her limp body violently against the wall of their bedroom.

50 years have passed since that dreaded night, but Trailyn still swears the shadow that murdered his Helayna is stalking him. He fears that if he does not keep moving, it will one day catch up with him and force him to relive the pain he felt many years ago for the rest of eternity.


Yzark Tak

Wizard2

Player: KrazyKat
Race: Human
Class: Wizard

Bio

I was abandoned by my parents. They left me in the woods. An old hedge wizard found me and took me in. He raised me with the help of a woman named Amaranth in the nearest town . He treated me well, and taught me to find useful plants and other things useful in magic potions. One day I returned from my travels to find that he had been bitten by a poisonous spider. He knew the antidote, but he didn’t have the items he needed. I ran to the town to get the items, but by the time I returned, he was dead. I buried him, gathered up his spell books and components, and set out to find a new life.

The Curse of Strahd Begins…

Outside the tavern, a fog lies over the town this evening. The damp, cobbled pavement glistens as the lights of street lanterns dance across the slick stones. The fog chills the bones and shivers the soul of anyone outside.

Yet inside these tavern walls the food is hearty, and the ale is warm and frothy. A fire blazes in the hearth, and the tavern is alive with the tumbling voices of country folk.

Suddenly, the tavern door swings open, and a hush falls over the room. Framed by the lamp-lit fog, a form strides through the doorway. His heavy, booted footfalls and the jingle of his coins shatter the silence. His brightly colored clothes are draped in loose folds about him, and his hat hangs askew, hiding his eyes in shadows. Without hesitation, he walks up to your table and stands proudly in a wide stance with folded arms.

In an accented voice he says,

“I have been sent to you to deliver this message. If you be creatures of honor, you will come to my master’s aid at first light. It is not advisable to travel the Svalich Woods at night!”

He then pulls from his tunic a sealed letter, addressed in beautiful flowing script. He drops the letter on the table.

“Take the west road from here some five hours march down through the Svalich Woods. There you will find my master in Barovia.”

Amid the silent stares of the patronage, the gypsy strides to the bar and says to the wary barkeep,

“Fill the glasses, one and all. Their throats are obviously parched.”

He drops a purse heavy with gold on the bar. With that, he leaves.

The babble of tavern voices resumes, although somewhat subdued. The letter is lying before you. The seal is in the shape of a crest you don’t recognize.

Hmph, well I’ve never had much use for seals anyhow.

Tears the seal into shreds and starts to read the letter

Throughout reading the letter I maintain a stern and stoic face. Emotionless to the words that come to me, this isn’t the first thing I’ll read and it won’t be the last. I stare up and down the letter again for any additional grammar mistakes and then, in a martial fashion, fold the letter into measurement perfect halfs, then again into quarters. I place the letter onto the table and with a slow yet calculated brush, push it into the middle.

What? You didn’t think I was going to read it for you? I assume you’re not all children titters to myself after this, you can read it yourself.

1 Like

Untouched by adventurers: the letters slowly begins to unfurl into a perennial rose shape despite the impossibility of how I have folded it.

I haven’t spent all this time doing nothing you know. I have a few tricks up my sleeve: I respond to nobody in particular: pre-emptively as usual.

Reads the letter with a look of surprise

@Kato

The wax seal you tore through, was not one you recognized.

seal

letter_1

Life loops back into thyself as for good there’s goldoons and for evil there’s nonce. Love of your life oh my love is my path - wealth for my interests merits wealth for my wrath.

(I set the letter back down on the table after what feels like an hour of reading but in reality it was a mere minute, with the face of surprise and disappointment upheld in silence.)

With a long sigh and reluctance to speak : Why would he need us for a Wound?
Eyes around obliviously What are we supposed to do?
In a lighter tone I don’t need his wealth.
In a less cynical tone I do wonder why he called it an Evil -
In a perfectly neutral tone He’s most likely paranoid.
In a reading voice All that I have shall be thine
In an inquisitive manner and slightly sarcastic manner Doesn’t sound like he has much.

Watching these imbeciles pass the letter around, taking turns reading it, I realize it is a horribily sub-optimal use of time, and I decide to shout at Brendan

Hey, you! Yeah, the hidious malformed blob of meat, you still got a mouth, right? Get busy and read the letter out loud!

I cannot see the letter. Bring it closer.

A slight snigger at Klaze’s remark but it quickly fades

Solemnly.

I pick up the letter and start walking towards Brendan, as I arrive where he’s lying about on the ground, I throw the letter on top of his head, covering his eyes and facial features completely

Here you go, buddy!

I twist myself around to read the letter.

What the fuck is this squiggly shit?

I knock the letter to the floor in disgust. It is unclear if I cannot read or just had trouble with the handwriting of the letter.

1 Like

I take a sip of my ale in quiet contemplation. I have barely noticed the events which are occurring around the letter.

Curse you, useless piece of shit

Kicks Brendan in the abdomen lightly, to make his jaw release the letter as he was biting it in an attempt to read it

I then proceed to read the letter out loud

Hail thee of might and valor:

I, a lowly servant of Barovia, send honor to thee. We plead for thy so desperately needed assistance. The love of my life, Ireena Kolyana, has been afflicted by an evil so deadly that even the good people of our village cannot protect her. She languishes from her wound, and I would have her saved from this menace.

There is much wealth in this community. I offer all that might be had to thee and thy fellows if thou shalt but answer my desperate plea. Come quickly, for her time is at hand! All that I have shall be thine!

Valor atop the letter - request from lowly slave.,
A lowly servant of Barovia, a servant of the grave.

Love of my life I incline, hear my siren cry,
Love of my life acting love of world’s sin - our town for doom we lie.

Prophecies without - our future more than bleak,
No legends to grace our presence, no saviors to speak.

Signal out oh lowly hero escalate your wealth,
Evil banished is all’s interest generation’s health.

As time will run and love is true - the truest of them all,
More true than wealth and wrath and worry: lovers lost is our worlds fall.

As Kato starts reading, I reach into my backpack, picking up my flute and I start playing a tranquil melody to compliment his poem