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Weakness Reveals Strength
Granted byVayt
Positive marksControl over Poisons and Disease
Negative marksDiseased, weakness and death
Pos. mark appearanceBlack Diamond Shape - Strength, Vitality, Charm
Neg. mark appearancePea Green Diamond Shape - Weak, Sickly, ill
Mark locationEntire Body
First markTouched by Vayt

Poison, disease and pestilence; all come together in what is known as Blight. Blight is the gift granted to those calling Vayt, their master. These individuals, also known as, The Shroud, spread plague and sickness wherever they step. All who encounter them, sooner or later, will succumb to weakness, sickness followed agonizingly by death. The God of Disease, Poison and Sickness, Vayt, marks or rather, infests his followers with the Gnosis of Blight thus creating, The Shroud. The Shroud in turn become carriers of a virulent, disease that in fact opens the victim up to other diseases, sicknesses and various afflictions that would otherwise be minor. Thus a cold can become pneumonia, a rash begins to rot the flesh and a mild case of food-poisoning destroys one's innards. In the end, one affected by The Blight, dies from what began as a slight disease, sickness or poison yet turned into a slowly torturous, wasting affliction without any known cure.

The Shroud, while carriers of the Blight, are unaffected by it. In fact, they are all quite handsome, almost unnaturally so. They are strong, beautiful, charming and appear the exact opposite of those suffering from the advanced effects of the Blight. Marked as they are, the Shroud bare no blemish or otherwise outward signs of being marked by Vayt as their mark takes the form of the disease they carry. The more marks they bare, the more powerful the Blight and the closer they become to their Lord. The marked do not actually gain any increase in physical strength. Instead, they project an aura of strength and beauty that allows them to draw others in close where their sickness and disease can take hold. It is that same aura that spreads the sickness to others.

The Shroud, naturally, do not gather in large groups as it would jeopardize the secrecy they are forced to keep. Moving from place to place, slowly spreading sickness and weakness in their wake, the Shroud enter a city and vanish before their damage is even known. One by one they blanket the land like a cancer; slowly spreading, growing and feeding of the strength and vitality of everything around them. If they ever meet one-another, they do so with the greatest of attention paid to secrecy. Even then, meetings occur only when they are needed; when their Lord decrees the need for greater numbers and strength or when specific targets of great importance are chosen. In a land where only the strong survive, The Shroud stand above all.


The Blight

The Blight does not have any symptoms of its own - meaning it is not a disease. What it is more constitutes an 'aura' that affects a surrounding area augmenting and causing already existing diseases to proliferate tremendously in Blight's influence. One cannot look at a person and tell that they were affected by The Blight. Instead, it amplifies and often mutates the symptoms of other illnesses. A victim of The Blight dies from what began as an otherwise somewhat harmless illness yet turned into something much greater. By the time someone realizes that they are sick and going to die, The Shroud has already fallen upon the victim and moved on to greener pastures. There is little hope for the victim however those marked by Rak'keli have been known to bring comfort to those affected by The Blight, even negating its secondary effects.

A good example of what Blight will do involves perhaps a local apple orchard. An orchard of fruit trees is growing happily - well tended - and only one apple in a distant tree has a bit of fungus on it. Within a few hours or even days (depending on the number of marks a Shroud member has) of a Shroud member moving into or across the area, the orchard will become infested with the fungus destroying the crop, probably all the trees as well. One person in a city with a minor case of 'athlete's foot' comes into contact with Blight, that fungus easily can go into overdrive and in turn effect everyone in the city's feet in a very short order. It can even do so much as to spread into the body cropping up as other types of fungus.

The Shroud

An individual marked by Vayt belongs to The Shroud. These people come from all races and transcend social and economic classes. Genders mean nothing nor do profession or talent. However, those skilled in the art of Poison are more likely to be approached by Vayt with an offer. The offer is that they will remain free of sickness, weakness and disease in exchange for bringing said ailments to the weak and deserving. Those dabbling in the use of poisons have already opened themselves up to the world of weakness thus creating an easy channel for Vayt to ply his deal. The promise of eternal health and strength amidst weakness and death is often too much for one to refuse.

Poisons, Disease, Pestilence and Weakness

Vayt is the master of these elements and thus his followers share in their effectiveness. The Shroud, while infected with the Blight and skilled with the use of poisons, also possess the ability to influence outbreaks of pestilence. While those with single marks of Blight have little control over it, those with greater marks can call upon and direct waves of pestilent rodents and insects alike. When a Shroud passes through a city, crops are chewed upon and withered by waves of locusts while stores of grain are infested with rats. Wells are contaminated by diseased insect larvae and mosquitoes bring blood-born sickness to those they feed upon. The occurrence of such pestilence varies by region, climate and population but sooner or later it will come.

Mark Progression

Marks from Vayt take on the form of a diamond shape such as found in playing cards. Positive marks are black, while negative marks are a pea green sickly color.

Negative marks granted by Vayt result in one becoming a carrier of The Blight yet baring no control over its affects. Negatively marked individuals also succumb to The Blight unlike devoted followers with the symptoms taking much longer to surface and grow. Death for those negatively marked can take a lifetime while offering no comfort, only torment.

Marked [Cursed] - 1 Gnosis Mark
Those baring the first mark from Vayt become members of The Shroud. They are carriers of The Blight though experience none of its negative symptoms. In fact, they appear to become twice as healthy, strong and beautiful than they would otherwise be. This aura of charm and attraction serves them in bringing others close to them; thus aiding in the spread of The Blight. The marked may pass along The Blight's influence wherever they go. There is no control over this, it just happens. Over the course of a month, those who come into contact with The Blight succumb to a secondary ailment with symptoms far outweighing those otherwise experienced. In populated areas, the population of pests such as rodents or insects, grows to an annoying level as long as The Shroud is present and lasts weeks after their departure.
Favored [Despised] - 2 Gnosis Marks
Members of The Shroud who find themselves favored by Vayt, experience an enlightenment in their ability to craft poisons. Cures for poisons crafted by the favored Shroud are difficult to concoct and such poisons can actually transcend boundaries to become contagious. The Shroud may cause an otherwise minor ailment, a rash, the common cold, influenza, in a victim which is then in turn amplified by The Blight. For example, The Shroud may grant a victim the cold via a kiss which over the course of a couple of weeks becomes a deadly case of pneumonia. In another case, The Shroud may spread The Blight to a crop such as corn or grain and over the course of a couple of weeks, the crop will wither and die. Insects or other animals that consume the infected crop will spread The Blight to other living beings. In addition, favored Shroud will bring in their wake a devastating level of pestilence. Rodents and insects will spread throughout a population like a plague; carrying disease and destruction to all they encounter.
Priest/Priestess [Adversary] - 3 Gnosis Marks
Priests and priestesses of Vayt experience an evolution of sorts in The Blight. It is as part of them as they are of it. This is emphasized by the fact that a priest of Vayt may use their own blood in the concoction of poisons and tailored diseases. Poisons crafted from the blood of a priest or priestess are the equivalent of an L3 poison and can bring about death via any form of transmission. Death of course is slow, wasting and quite painful. Priests may also pass along the Blight to others at a strength which amplifies the symptoms of other diseases; bringing about a torturous death in but a few days. Priests and Priestesses may also direct waves of rodents and insects (variety depends on location, climate, etc.) to devour acres of crops and infect miles of countryside with The Blight.
Champion [Nemesis] - 4 Gnosis Marks
Champions of Vayt are in themselves, a sentient disease; they are The Blight. Anything the Champion touches or comes near (within a foot or so) is infected. The Champion has total control over the type of disease inflicted as well as how long it lasts. They control how deadly the disease is and how long the victim suffers before being consumed and ultimately eliminated. They are also able to choose which kind of pesitelence to unleash upon a region. The variety is exhaustive and the range is tens of miles.