Lost in the Mists

Life #32 - A Vampire in Monk's Clothing

We scaled Mount Baratak and as we climbed higher the air grew thin and frigid. Winds battered us as icy air filled our lungs. After enduring this hellishness for a day we came upon frozen bodies. They looked like statues carved out of ice, but they were very suspicious-looking. As we approached there was a terrible wailing. Out of the snow came a crying woman. We knew she was not what she seemed and sure enough, the frozen forms sprang to life as the specter attacked us.

While she was formidable, we were victorious over the specter and her icy minions. Lucas told us of some legend involving a young woman who was caught in a storm on the mountain. Her specter had killed most of the men who went to rescue her, leading to tales of her spirit attacking travelers and stealing the warmth from their bodies.

We continued down Svalich Pass and began walking along Old Svalich Road. We finally, after all this time, had reached Barovia. As we came over a hill we were greeted by the sight of a large walled town on the shore of a huge lake. Lucas told us it was Vallaki, his hometown. We proceeded to Blue Water Inn where nearly everyone who we spoke with was quite surprised to see Lucas alive and well.

As we spoke with the townspeople, we learned more and more of troubled times that the town had been experiencing. Two members of the council, the Watcher cousins, had recently been murdered. And the nearby dusk elves were losing their hunting parties somewhere in the nearby woods. There was also fighting among the people of one of the districts in the town.

We agreed that we should do something about all this trouble plaguing the area and offered our services to the Burgomaster. He was more than happy to accept our aid. Before we began though, the Vistani bard, Arabelle, at the inn read our fortunes.
I drew first and based on my cards Arabelle told me that at some place called the Tser Pool my vitality would be bolstered for the fight there. Some of the others also were told of places where they would receive greater power for the trials to come.

With knowledge of our potential futures we ventured onward. We dug up the Watcher cousins so that Goodman could once again perform his favorite, and very helpful, rituals. Goodman learned that the men had been killed by a monk dressed in white and with a full black beard. He was inhumanly fast and wore a golden lion pendant. He also learned that the Watchers had all been warned to stay away from the family mausoleum.

We put the bodies to rest and then got some rest. The next morning we ventured to the dusk elf camp near the town. The dusk elves were very polite, although there was some tension between the elves and Lucas. The elves explained that two of the hunting parties had vanished. The dusk elf leader, Kasimir, told us that he had made an agreement with the Watcher family to keep their mausoleum hidden in the forest. He had apparently failed to uphold his part of the agreement.

With Kasimir’s help we were able to locate the mausoleum. Someone had clearly been there recently. Inside we found a stone box in the center of the floor that had blood on it. The box appeared to have been sculpted with magic, rather than carved with tools. The corner of the box had been broken, revealing it to be hollow. We smashed the hole enough to get a better look inside. We found that every inch of the box had been scratched from the inside, except for a small portion containing a symbol to the Morning Lord.

The conclusion we’ve reached now is that the box was a prison for a vampire, and that vampire is now free. When some grave-robbing fool broke the corner of the box, the vampire turned to mist and escaped. He then sought out the Watcher cousins to enact revenge for his imprisonment.

Looks like we’re hunting for vampires.



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