Thieves & Kings
Blackmaw the Black Witch
Blackmaw the Black Witch, is an ancient creature, long since having abandoned her fey traditions in a quest for some sort of personal task only she is aware of. Sly and subversive, she ultimately has an agenda of seeing the virtuous turned villainous; love into obsession, kindness to hate and devotion to disregard. She takes a perverse joy in the corruption of mortal lives and souls.
Her present location is unknown, though scrying efforts have revealed one of her chief agents, Tartuk the Mite has relocated to an unknown “vine-grown lair”, possibly similar to the one she previously had in the Marta’Tauri borders of the First World. With the adventurers claim on The Elder Scroll, she may have abandoned the realm for other pursuits.
Erilyn, Duskthorn Dryad
Blackmaw is rumored to have once been something else. According to the adventurer’s ally Tiressia, she was once known as Erilyn, a Duskthorn Dryad, described as “…not evil, but always ‘prickly’…”. She was, however, cast from the Border Court for her actions and depravity some time ago. For a time afterwards, she became a Night Hag, and retains many of these powers, but seems to be evolving beyond those basic restrictions.
Moró, Adviser to the Greatwyrm
It has also been revealed that she was also possibly disguised as a fey noblewoman by the name of Moró, who acted as the guide and adviser to the Greatwyrm clan of Mosswater over the last few generations of that family. It is suggested that this same creature led the last Baron, Hlanas “the Mad” Greatwyrm into worship of Kurse, the Corruptor, and then ravaged their realm with an army of trolls. The exact reasons behind this effort remain unknown, but is believed to be linked to The Elder Scroll.
She has a proven history of being devoted to corrupting fey and mortals alike towards some evil end, and has largely abandoned her former dryad sisters who continue to guard Silvershadow Lake against casual intrusion. Nonetheless, she has never attacked them directly, and has allowed them to remain unmolested by her agents and servants alike ever since her self-banishment began.
Believing she was the one behind the rash of Dream Fever that swept the lands of Thornkeep in late-1049, the adventurers tracked her to a minor lair in the borders of the First World, where they assaulted and looted the small outpost, attacking and chasing away a dark hag they assumed was Blackmaw. Not without a price, however, for the magic (and rings) of hags are never to be trusted. She has not been seen nor heard from directly since, though her agents, such as the Bailiff Setrew, and at least two unknown green hags, have been encountered. These agents, who seem rather widespread across the region, are increasingly becoming active.
She seems uninterested in the the First World itself, and her connections to the Marta’Tauri and its so-called “Border Court”, according to Lady Sylessi, has been severed. Blackmaw’s agents in the region are becoming increasingly more restless and beginning to cause distrust and chaos, which many, including the adventurers, seemed to think was a precursor to her invading the realms of Thornkeep.
During their investigation in finding the source of this gathering army, the adventurers encountered one of her chief agents, Mother Nanns Iceclaws who led the Troll King Hargulka. Discovering she was likely the one behind the attack on Mosswater fifty years previous, they slew her and her troll minions in their lair at Az-Vassa. In the nearby war camp of Frog-Folk, they encountered another of her legacies, hinting once more, that Blackmaw has plans far larger than this little realm, and that this all might be part of a greater-ranging plot. From among the melted, snowy remains of Mother Nanns, they recovered Nann’s Bone Ring, which seems to draw them south-west towards Mornhaven.
Reports in the days following hinted that a woman fitting the description of Blackmaw, “… an ebony skinned woman with curved horns, flowing black cloak, and gold runes etched in her flesh…” was seen riding “… a black, flaming demon horse…” north of Thornkeep. Searching of the general area has hinted that a large mount, which melted the snow beneath its steps moved through the area in question, vaguely headed towards Mornhaven.
During the hallmoot of 15th Hammer, TR 1050 at Thornkeep, another of her minions was encountered, though this one seemed different. Morahnna, the Gray Witch was encountered during the meeting, and subsequently attacked and slain when she demanded the subjugation of Dame Kahli of Whiterock as the “Princess of Thorns”. Her body was recalled somewhere when knocked unconscious, however, so neither she nor any of her belongings could be recovered.
It was also during this encounter, that Morahnna referred to her mistress as “The Morrighu”, the “Queen of the Hags”, and the group realized that the connotation was more of a religious term than a secular one, hinting that the Morrighu was likely a demigod or other minor deity. This name was also a key feature of the frog-folk’s worship in teh camps outside Az-Vaasa, and the adventurers retain a rough drawing of this creature, depicted as a woman with snake arms and bearing three cryptic sigils..
The recent Tolling Bell sound on the night of the Bells of Fate, further hints that, perhaps, the death of another deity might be involved…