The War of Horrors
Skoulos, also known as Skoulos the Undying and Skoulous the Vermincrafter, was a half- daelkyr archmage who lived in the Shadow Marches thousands of years ago. His father, a pureblood daelkyr, appointed him as lieutenant of an army of aberrations during the Daelkyr War. The archmage built a tower called the Black Spire to serve as his stronghold during the conflict, which still stands a menacing vigil just south of Punjar.
Skoulos is best known for slaughtering mages and clerics during the war. He feared that arcana and holy magic could be used against the daelkyr armies, so he mercilessly slew any who practiced those arts. Skoulos regularly confiscated mystic tomes and sacred lore, which he archived in the Black Library at his tower.
When the Gatekeeper Druids repelled the daelkyr to Xoriat and Khyber, Skoulos vanished from the historical record. Many assumed he was imprisoned in Khyber with his kin, but some weren’t so sure. As it turns out, the doubters were correct.
Skoulos planned his return long before he went to slumber in an ootheca-like sarcophagus of his own devising. He created a device called the vitality infuser, which could concentrate the diffuse daelkyr essence found in his descendants into a powerful restorative injection. This substance, once delivered to his hibernation chamber, would simultaneously wake him and regenerate his vitality. The plan worked, but oddly not in the way he intended.
Although one of his descendants, Malikai, did indeed rise to the cause of restoring his ancestor, he also failed. But when Skoulos’ would-be champion fell, another — Ket Ahman — rose to take his place. Ket had bonded with a daelkyr symbiont that, little by little, compromised his judgment and motivations. At that moment, the symbiont twisted his mind enough to pick up the partially-filled infuser and thrust it into the ootheca.
The vial didn’t contain enough of Malikai’s lifeblood to fully restore Skoulos, but it certainly woke him. He dispatched Turnkey and Mark as they held him fast, and Ket committed suicide before he could inflict further harm on his friends. Horrified, the remaining party members collapsed the cavern on Skoulos and beat a hasty retreat.
Skoulos is assumed dead beneath tons of basalt debris, but since his body couldn’t be retrieved, nobody knows for certain….