Wednesday, 26 November 2014

The Wizard Yozz and the War-Pigs of Power

Toward the final moments of the Battle of Beltane, the Wizard Yozz saw which way the blood was flowing and the wind was blowing, so he did what any craven of his kind would do... he fled.
He dragged a passing cavalryman from his horse, and made all haste to his tower so that he might take several of his most valuable possessions with him, before fleeing the inevitable retribution. He packed only the essentials, his notebooks (kept in such tiny handwriting you needed a scry glass to read them), his spell books, and several crates containing his life’s ambition.
 All of this was loaded onto a wagon by the remaining four members of his house staff (the others he had experimented on), who were in turn set on fire for their troubles; in fact, when the Lord of Storms finally made his way through the darkened wood, to the glade of the fell Wizard, the bodies of the unfortunate henchmen were still roasting and spitting on the doorstep giving off the most frightful aroma.
But alas for the Lord and his men, for they were too late, the Wizard Yozz was safely ensconced below decks on a smuggler vessel called the Cracked Tusk, making its way across the choppy waters to what is known as Eilean Dubh, but called the Black Isle by those who dwell there.
Shortly after dusk of the following day, the boat made landfall at the harbour town known as Tenkar’s Landing. Here, the Wizard slipped ashore as quietly, and as deadly, as the ship’s rats that had brought the plague with them, all those years before. He cast a dweomer on his appearance so that none of the Lord’s spies might recognise him, and proceeded to blend into the local populace.
And so it went, for at least six months, and during this time the Wizard did nothing more wizardly than light his pipe with his finger! In fact, he spent most of his time, deep in his cups at a flavourful and favourite local establishment, called Tenkar’s Tavern. Run by a particularly grumpy dwarf, also called Tenkar, the Wizard found solace amongst the riff-raff and ruffians that frequented that place. It was a good place to lose yourself Yozz decided, so that’s what he did.
But he longed to get back to his work... it gnawed at him day and night, haunted his dreams, and chased him vigorously no matter where he went. On the seventh month, having decided there was nothing for it, he began again.
No one noticed at first.
Especially not the genial inhabitants of the Landing, no, they were too busy living life to see the darkness that blossomed among them. It was the children that disappeared first, the unloved, the orphans, the by-blows no one wanted. Then it was the sick and the elderly that went next. It was only a few weeks later when suspicions were aroused, and the local constabulary raided his dwelling. In the basement they found terrible things, unspeakable things, and it is not for me to tell you what it was exactly... but know only that it was unholy and defied the very gods themselves. But again, whatever foul deity the Wizard served must have been smiling down on him, as he was well beyond the Landing’s limits as armoured dwarves were kicking in his doors.
He journeyed for days, weeks, months, through hill and vale stopping only to eat, and gather more specimens. It was nearly another six-month later that he found himself at the heart of a foul and pestilent swamp just a few miles from a sheltered cove on the south-west side of the isle. It was perfect for his needs. Six miles at least, in any direction from anything even remotely resembling a town, here he could do what he wanted and no one would be any the wiser. The only problem was the lack of human subjects, but again the dark lord’s blessing fell into his lap, and he was gifted by a multitude of escaped pigs gone feral , called Razorbacks by the few locals.
Here he bred them, and attached them, and morphed them, and sewed them together with whatever else he could get his hands on...and eventually, after many years of foul sorceries and wyrd energies, he had finally created what he deemed worthy of his attentions...the War-Pigs.
Taller than any man, and nearly ten times as strong, these giant, walking Razorbacks, are now his personal army, and trained to carry out his commands without question. An unhealthy amalgamation of both man, and Razorback, they walk on human legs with pig’s feet at the end of them, and use their human arms to swing whatever weapons they have been given. Their heads and faces are those of the pig, but with tusks like a wild boar, and they possess the keenest sense of smell that allows them to sniff out their foes, be they hidden by shadow or sorcery.

Trained in armed combat from birth, they are fierce warriors and now number in their thousands. Tired of living in the backwaters of the  Black Isle, the Wizard has decided to march them north to Tenkar’s Landing to settle old scores, then commandeer a vessel for another assault on the mainland. Only time will tell what happens, but if the Wizard’s past is anything to go by, you can be assured that this time, fortune might just indeed favour the insane...

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