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Death Knight

From Lost Fables Wiki

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Artwork by dleoback
Death Knight
Rarity: Rare
Danger Level: Medium

Primary Author(s): BOTE

(The contents of this page are NOT common knowledge)

"A life void of death is nothing but an unending prison to a cold, mortal shell."

- The Gilded One

History

The winter nights bore harshly upon a group of men and their leader, sent on a campaign to the frigid norths a thousand strong to bring to heel the rebel tribes that threatened the crown of their kingdom. Their supplies had begun to run dangerously low, no forests in sight upon their mountainous path to even so much as replenish their firewood. For King and Country, they had been told. For Glory, they had viciously lapped up the sentiment of. But here they walked, no more than three hundred. Half of their force dead from the battles waged on the way here. The rest, deserted in the night.

Eltorak shouldered the burden of leadership, a young general who had proven countless times over his efficiency in strategy and thoughtfulness despite his youth. Any lesser man would have run the few remnants of the so-called army into the ground, but he managed to keep it going. Barely.

A fool’s choice. I should have left with them.

And so they fought onwards. Tribe after tribe slowly eating away at the lives of the men. Two hundred fifty. One hundred. Fifty. Eventually, only a ragged band of twenty remained at the end of their cold journey through the depths of snow and ice, a hardened band of veterans capable of fighting forces twice their measly size. With one last tribe left, Eltorak gave his demands - an unconditional surrender or a fight he was still confident he could win, given the similarly small village they were faced with.

With his demands stated, he and his men were approached by a man within the village. One dressed in a suit, not winter attire. One who spoke smoothly and moved with grace, not at all like the tribal cultures they had fought so far. The man spoke that they should turn back and leave. That they had already lost nearly all of the thousand men they had brought, and to push onwards would be to meet their doom.

And like the soldier I was, I cut the man down.

Eltorak and his men conquered the village. Their campaign was completed, and they began their journey home. One by one the men fell, be it from injury or starvation. One by one they died. Trudging onward, Eltorak finally looked around to see not a single man around him. Not a single other soldier. Upon the barren fields he stood, old swords and armor from the beginning of their campaign stuck from the snow. Bodies, still intact but for the wolves who feasted upon their flesh, stared blankly at the commander who led them to their ruin.

He moved on. Each step was agonizing, forced as he sunk waist deep in the snow. He moved on and on, until he could move no longer. Collapsing into the snow, he died. That would have, should have been the end of Eltorak’s tale. But it wasn’t. When he came to pass, his mind remained. He no longer breathed, no longer lived, but it wasn’t right to call him dead. Constantly he was forced to remain aware of his surroundings, agony and spreading through him as wolves ate his flesh, his body burying in the snow for years until he was nothing but a half skeleton.

It would drive anyone mad.

And it did. Eltorak was driven to madness, losing all sense of self in time. Was this truly what death was meant to be? In the depths of his mindless chaos, something came to be born however. A being of snow and ice in the wastelands he was left to rot in. A creature without name or shape or form, one incomprehensible by all means to the human mind, one that could drive a man insane at a glance. But Eltorak was already insane, already at the lowest he could possibly go. So too was this enigma before him, and in their shared madness, Eltorak was granted animation once more.

He woke not in the frozen wastelands, not on an ancient battlefield, but in a kingdom. Once his home, obliterated entirely and without a living person in sight. Eltorak rose up then, a skeleton adorned in gilded armor. He began his march anew.

The Gilded One: Eltorak

Eltorak is the first Death Knight to come to life, a skeleton of innumerable years and immense experience, depicted often wearing golden armor. In life he was a high ranking officer who died on a campaign into the frigid norths of his country to quell a brewing civil war. He accomplished this, though he and his men died in the process, and Eltorak found his soul unable to pass on after defying warnings to cease from a man, who later became known to him as Tyranos. Eltorak was forced to live years on as nothing but a corpse, watching his body deteriorate until his madness grew exponentially, enough to gain vision of Covrudurth, the Dragon of Undeath who governs all Death Knights, and grants animation to their ruined bodies once more.

Eltorak continues his march from life, travelling constantly. He is not necessarily evil, often showing respect to those he meets. But to assume him good-natured is folly, for he shares the goal of all Death Knights; to slay Covrudurth and finally die, regardless of the consequences to anyone else. Despite his intentions, he is undeniably one of the brightest minds to ever exist, as well as one of the strongest; incomparable to other Death Knights in sheer strength due to the length of his existence. Additionally, it is rumored that Eltorak bears the blessing of Tyranos, allowing him powers and abilities unknown to other Death Knights.

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Characteristics

Death Knights exist as a playable Conditional CA as well as Event Creature, beginning first as mortals who could not pass on to the world of the dead. This could be through a variety of means, such as having their soul magically bound to their body, all the way to defying the Lord of Undeath himself. Either way, the prerequisite requires their soul to remain in their body, forcing them to be conscious as they deteriorate to nothing but a skeleton. As this happens, so does their mind crumble until they are nothing but a shell of their former self. In this state only, they may bear witness to Covrudurth, and gain his bane to animate their body once more, provided that they rest within frigid wastes.

This raises forth a Death Knight, a skeletal figure repaired of any and all injury to their undead frames. Some Death Knights remain driven into complete madness from this point on, existing to do nothing but slaughter and kill until they eventually meet their death. Others, such as Eltorak and any Player-Death Knights, recover to a degree. Though never sane, they may feign a calm state of mind, and slowly calculate how they will proceed to their ultimate goal; a release from the agony of undeath.

A Death Knight does not necessarily seek death for the sake of death itself however. Though they view the concept of dying as a beautiful thing, they understand - at least those not driven to animalistic insanity - that mindless conflict will serve only to hinder them, and cause others to rally against them.

The Knight's Body

A Death Knight begins with strength comparable to what they held in life, though the durability of their bones without any armor is strengthened to be comparable to iron. As the years progress however, so too does their strength as they grow more and more accustomed to their undead state. After five years they will find that they may be twice as strong as they once were. Another ten years, and they become thrice - so on.

The true horror in confronting a Death Knight is not the physical strength behind their motions however, but the immortal nature of their bodies. To strike a Death Knight down is nothing more than an inconvenience. They feel no pain from anything but platinum and holy strikes, but even those fail to stop their eternal march. To destroy their arm, their skull, or even their entire body would slow them briefly, but they would merely combine once more. If a body part is completely and utterly annihilated, a new one would form in its place. Any healing, from the smallest of cracks to a destroyed body, takes place over ten emotes wherein the Death Knight can continue to fight using what they do have during this time. If a body part is merely removed, it reconnects in that time. This process may take longer if the body part is significantly far away, such as being thrown across a field.

That is not to say they are invulnerable however. Capturing a death knight is no easy task but it is possible with the proper planning. If not capturing them, then it’s just as possible to remove parts of their body and lock them away where they cannot rejoin. If this is done, the Death Knight’s consciousness remains in their skull. It should be noted that if a Player Death Knight is captured and an action such as “throwing the skull in an ocean” is done, the Lore Team may allow this Death Knight to reform in full. If you capture a Player Death Knight, they must at least be able to create interactions with players; even if it’s having the skull in a cell, able to speak to guards or others that pass by. A Death Knight will always be able to tell where the rest of their body is located, even if they cannot reach it. If any piece of the Death Knight’s body is not properly locked away, it will make its way back to the Death Knight.

Death Knights and Magic

Death Knights are incapable of practicing magic of any form, and if they fight must only use weapons and armor; though enchanted gear is quite possible. Though they may not practice magic due to the constraints on their soul, that does not mean they do not understand magic, given their ageless wisdom often makes them more intelligent than most. Additionally, magic serves a lesser effect on Death Knights who have lived for at least thirty years in this state; taking half damage from any combative uses, and with mental effects only serving at half duration as their enigmatic mind fights against it(or half efficiency if not applicable to a duration).

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Summary

Death Knights or otherwise known as a Dauridar serve as creatures born of Covrudurth’s will, those who died but could not pass, and were driven to insanity as they watched their bodies break down. They exist for the purpose of finding out a way to die, wishing to do little else and serving as their own force. As a neutral creature, they will often elect to forge their own paths against both light and dark forces, rather than allying with one or the other; though this is not an irrefutable truth by any stretch. A few base guidelines to playing them follow:

General Redlines

- A Death Knight can only be made through events, where only after dying an ET informs them that their soul cannot pass on. The player has the option to be revived through normal methods, or deny that and become a Death Knight. An ET informing a player prior to death invalidates the chance.

- A potential Death Knight has to have a reason for their soul to remain stagnant, it doesn’t just happen. It could be a curse, a barrier around their soul and body, or even angering the God of Undeath through their own actions.

- Aesthetic flavors, such as glowing eyes, frost following the Death Knight, or even having a weapon of ice(normal crafting rules apply) are fine.

- Death Knights cannot practice any magic.

- Death Knights cannot FTB or be involved with anyone romantically.

- Death Knights tend to a neutral-evil alignment, though they can be anywhere that isn’t “Good.”

This lore post is shorter than the average on the premise that the abilities of a Death Knight are much more straight and forward than creatures prone to the use of magic/innate abilities.