Friday, September 2, 2011

APPENDIX C: Vegard's Letter / Fragments of Jakter's Journal

Dear Nephew,

I apologize for leaving so abruptly, and not giving more explanation as to the responsibility you must now bear. I must confess I was desperate to be away from Cryssaegrym and simply return home.

You see, the sword is a heavy burden to bear, for if the wielder does not appease its appetite for power, it brings profound sadness to the possessor.

Jakter satisfied the sword. I suppose I did too, at first. But then I journeyed to Zot at your father’s instruction, to investigate the the operations of an evil cult. On the way, I was captured by a wicked vampire and held in his pantry for a year. The vampire drained my lifeforce, and I endured great misery and pain. When I finally managed to escape, my soul was so withered that Cryssaegrym no longer found my power acceptable. I was overcome by profound sorrow, emanated from the sword into my dreams and eventually my every waking moment. It sought a more powerful user -- so I sought you.

Jakter gave me the sword before he went to a place he called “the keep on the borderlands.” I am afraid I do not know where that is, but I can confirm that Jakter likely met his end there. I arranged for a priest to commune with his god Navashstrom, and it was confirmed that Jakter was no longer alive. Jakter anticipated this -- that is why he gave me the sword before he went there.

Your father sincerely believed Cryssaegrym’s quest was the most important thing in the world. Personally, I regard Kyuss as just another dime-a-dozen “supreme ancient evil” that adventurers all over seek and destroy to bolster their reputations of glory and heroism, and the obsessive quest of the sword -- once fully imparted to the possessor like it was with Jakter -- will consume your life.

Early, think long and hard on whether you wish to tackle Cryssaegrym’s quest. If so, then I have included Jakter’s journal in the box with this letter. The journal contains contains fragments of information that may help you pick up where he left off. If you choose otherwise, then you must find someone else to take up the sword or your soul will suffer the most profound sorrow.

-- Your Uncle, Vegard


The fragments of Jakter’s journal contain various facts, but there are numerous gaps in the journal, especially near the end. This makes it impossible to piece together the entire narrative.

“Diamond Lake”
A mining town in southern Walsta. The journal does not say what first led Jakter to this place, but it was here that he heard stories of a place called “the Whispering Cairn,” and he went to explore it.

“The Tomb of the Wind Duke”
Hidden within the Whispering Cairn was a place Jakter dubbed the “Tomb of the Wind Duke.” It was inside this dungeon that he found Cryssaegrym. He also found the ghost of a teenager, slain long ago by one of the dungeon’s traps. The ghost asked him to return his bones to his family’s small cemetary.

“The Worm”
The ghost’s family’s cemetery had been desecrated, and when Jakter investigated, he uncovered a small group of necromancers, robbing graves and conducting vile experiments on the deceased.

After defeating the necromancers, Jakter explores their tower. He finds a jar containing a single green worm preserved in a strange fluid.

“Allustan the Sage”
Allustan is the Sage of Diamond Lake. He was very interested in the worm Jakter found and studies it carefully.
Allustan’s research over time provided a lot of information on the ancient lore surrounding the mysterious “Age of Worms”, a prophesied time when a horrid being called “Kyuss” would be triumphant over all.
The journal mentions that Allustan later learned something very important from his research, but it is implied that Jakter never found out what it was before he went to “the keep on the borderlands.”

“The Black Triad”
Jakter investigates the necromancers’ activities around Diamond Lake. When he learns of worm-infested undead within the Diamond Lake mines, he investigates and finds the hidden underground temple of a dark cult called the “Black Triad.” From here, Jakter wages a long battle against this cult. This cult was actually trying to create a new god entirely out of the essence of three dead evil gods. Was this new god to be Kyuss, then? Jakter wondered.

In the end the cult’s operations beneath the mines were defeated, but Jakter learns three interesting new pieces of information -- the necromancers had stolen the worm from the cultists, there were more Black Triad operations in Walsta and Zeltennia, and the green worms were apparently supplied to the cult by someone called “Tolstoff”.

“The Herald”
Shortly after Cryssaegrym was recovered, Jakter found himself stalked and frequently attacked by a powerful monster he calls the “Herald of Kyuss”. Jakter says it was able to change its shape, and it was far too powerful to defeat. He escaped death at its hands no less than three times.

“The Tolstoffs”
Jakter speaks of Karyna and Edwin Tolstoff. He believed that Edwin was a wizard of great power. Their connection to the Age of Worms is not entirely clear, but they seem to be involved with providing the green worms to the Black Triad cult at Diamond Lake.

Jakter said he had completed two legacy rituals for the sword to unlock its powers, but the third one required a journey to the Silver Wolf’s Temple and he was unable to learn its location. Jakter writes often of how Cryssaegrym dreads the coming of Kyuss and wants to be ready to destroy him, and how important the quest is to him and the world.

“The Keep on the Borderlands”
Near the end of the journal, there are a few references to “the keep on the borderlands,” supposedly the last place Jakter went. He believed going there to be a likely suicide mission and he brought Cryssaegrym to Vegard for safekeeping just in case. He also told Vegard to investigate Black Triad operations (which, ultimately, he was unable to do).

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