Cause of Undead and Brigand Attacks Revealed?

Quill McMartin

UP: Great Lakes

    A case of mistaken identity has led to a surprise breakthrough in the investigation of the recent uprising of brigand and undead attacks across Britannia. An investigation is now underway to confirm or refute the information received.

An anonymous source explained that he and his associate, both scribes, were working in the Empath Abbey chapel. The two men were finishing up the last of a large order for a client when a young lady entered. Apparently mistaking them for brothers of the Abbey, she approached one of them and asked if she might sit next to him. The source said that she was visibly distressed. He nodded and she slid next to him on the bench. Wringing her hands, she poured forth an amazing tale to him in a voice hushed with worry. The scribe’s associate, one row behind them, was able to record the interlude as he seemingly continued his work.

The transcription reads as follows:

"Your lordship, I have to make confession to you. My heart is so heavy with shame, I can barely stand the weight of it. I know why the evil spirits arise and why the brigands stalk the giorgios of this land. It is the curse of my family, our people, upon them, on them all.”

"My father, who is the leader of our folk, has long held contempt for the giorgio leaders of Sosaria. He has complained, for as long as I can recall, of how ill we are treated at their hands. We are not welcome in their villages. We are not protected by their guards and laws. We are treated as thieves and held in contempt wher’er we travel. And... as our vardos make their way down the roads as we are driven from one place and another, lawless men attack us and burn our camps and harm our women. All of this, we have learned to endure over the many centuries. It has been so and we do not foresee change.”

"When an outlaw by the name of Trevor Beckett stole into our camp, he and his men were ruthless. They tortured our men, killed our stock and abused many of the women. My father went to the local magistrate for help, but was turned away at the city gates by small boys throwing rocks and calling hateful names. Insult over injury, Papa could not abide, especially once word reached him that some giorgio groups sought Beckett that they might aid him in his escape! He returned to our shambled camp and gathered all the men together. They spoke of evil things in hushed tones. We women were not allowed in the meeting, so I know very little of what exactly they did. I do know that not long after, Beckett met a violent end and the cemeteries began spewing wickedness from their quiet tombs.”

"My mother had been the victim of Beckett himself. I counted her fortunate to still have breath in her spirit after all he’d done to her. She was not healed from the bruises when Robert d’Guy called upon us with his men, seeking information about a caravan of merchandise that was due to pass near us on its way to Britain, where it would be shipped to Nujel’m. When our people refused to help him, he turned his vengeance upon us and again we were savagely beaten and tormented. My mother did not survive this attack. As she died, her final words were a curse upon him and all his kindred. Curses upon curses upon curses... “

"We were forced to take shelter at the camp near Minoc while vardos were repaired or rebuilt. Papa says it is the nearest thing to prison for us and merely lacks the bars and locks. All who wish to invade our privacy may do so. Robert d’Guy stole into the camp again. He was desperate for a way to dispel the curse of my dying mother, being very superstitious. Babba Yani, the oldest woman of our tribe, agreed to look into the crystal for d’Guy and tell him what she could. I remember Babba Yani saying later that if a man were as superstitious as he, he had no business dealing misery to the Romni. Babba Yani, of course, had no desire to aid d’Guy in any manner, so she lied and told him of a treasure map. When recovered, the treasure would yield a cure for his curse. What the crystal truly showed her was his savage extinction.”

"It is clear to me now that there are many vile curses at work here. I believe that the brigands have been cursed into frenzied, ill-planned attacks which will result in their annihilation and that their souls can never find peace when they are slaughtered."

The document ends abruptly here, the source explained, with the arrival of his client. As soon as the third man entered the chapel, the girl leapt to her feet and shot out of the building.