Blade of Innocence: Introduction

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The suspected dark lord Creus was once, like all the dark lords, a resident of a different plane. Creus was a warrior-mage of considerable repute, seen as the protector of his country Avaldia. Born in a time of war, war was all Creus knew. Selected as a child for training, Creus's life was circumscribed by two types of persons--those who were enemies and those who were expendable to ensure the defeat of enemies.

Men respected him, though none could be considered his friends. After all, who knew when they would be sent to die in one of his brilliant feints? Or sacrificed to hold a pass or ford? His only family valued him as important in raising the standing of their house, but they did their best to keep him at a distance lest he bring his need for battle home to those who sent him away in his youth.

In the year 755 of the Nezarian Calendar, Creus's orders were to attack the kingdom of Rosada. Rosada was a bordering nation of elves, whose interruptions of Avaldia's lumber economy at their shared border had grown tiresome. Thus Creus marched into ancient forests of redwoods, staining the ground with a different red. His 'fever' was upon him, though at the home front growing dissidence mounted as news of his horrors were brought home.

Yet onward he pressed, respectful of the elves' prowess in battle but determined to sack their capital. Though many even in his conclave of generals counseled against this genocide, Creus bore no hatred for the elves. He was killer, this was his purpose. And so the slaughter continued, a line of corpses tracing his path to Quasani, the City of Gentle Ice.

Exactly what happened when he entered the city is unclear. Those who witnessed him entering the castling and butchering the inhabitants claim that his sword arm halted when he looked upon the face of the child Vasa, who apparently resembled the twin sister he had played with, who had wept when he had been taken away. As she stood in terrified defiance over her own sister, he paused. Yet then his sword cleaved them both in two, and he vanished in a cry of surprise and outrage, engulfed by a swirl of black mists.

What happened to Creus? It is believed that the child before him gave life back to his soul, but the mysterious evils that rule over the fabled Land of Dread had waited too long in hunger to take him at the apex of his crimes. When the moment of redemption was at hand, the demiplane's dark powers forced their hand lest they be deprived of their prize.

And they left a sword that cannot be cleansed of the blood upon it. The blade now sits in the study of the ursinal Gorsan, who believes the Dark Powers may, for the first time in millennia, be thwarted for their injustice. For all his crimes, the crime that took Creus from the 'fields we know' was one he did not willingly commit.

The Blade of Innocence can only be used against those of evil alignment and any cut by the blade are haunted by the last heart breaking moment of Creus on this side of existence. With the proper magical incantation, it is possible to peer into the realm of Creus: A forest kingdom of twisted black trees, a city of shattered black ice and a pair of thrones. In one, Creus sits. In the other, a girl, his wife or perhaps child, an elf corpse whose halved body has been stitched together with threads of black iron.

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