The Necroalchemists
The Necroalchemists

The Necroalchemists

Tired of the usual stalemate between priest and Athar denier, Tarragon Balm (planar tiefling necromancer [she/her] / Athar / N) set out on a different path. It’s her firm belief that the undead ain’t actually dead at all, it’s just the screed of priests that labels them that way. Before you scoff, listen to a summary of her arguments:

So-called ‘Undead’ have different forms of blood, biles, galls and humours (the main constituents of a mortal’s body). Just as an imbalance of humours causes disease in mortals, so variations in the constituents of ‘undead’ creatures accounts for their variable natures.

Many ‘undead’ have links to the Negative Material Plane through which they draw their magical powers. That doesn’t necessarily mean they have to be dead, though – after all, a whole group of sorcerers from a Prime world called Zakhara specialise in drawing power from the negative, and they’re very much alive.

Tarragon speculates that undeath is actually a disease, rather like lycanthropy, which changes normal mortals into ‘undead’ creatures. Being magical in origin, it can extend the lifespans of its ‘victims’ indefinitely, which brings with it an altered perception of mortality (and corresponding moral and ethical changes), as well as render its subjects immune to forms of damage which would harm mortals. The various ‘supernatural’ vulnerabilities exhibited by these so-called undead are explained as allergens, like that of werewolves and silver, or fiends and cold-iron. Such allergens damage the disease-organisms which have performed the alteration in the body, disrupting the host.

The Necroalchemists claim that the undeath disease can be transmitted from infected creatures to mortals. It takes a few days to take hold, during which time the victim appears to be dead (they’re actually in a deep trance while their body’s biology drastically alters itself according to the disease’s pattern).

‘Course, priests claim they can ‘turn’ undead with their Power’s might. Like many things Atharic, the Necroalchemists refute this, saying priests merely use holy symbols which affect the undead as allergens.

This all has a number of repercussions, of course. Since the undead aren’t really dead (at least, if you subscribe to this philosophy) while priests claim they are, does this mean they’re hiding more basic truths about the Multiverse?

Tarragon’s research continues. The chant is that she hopes to smuggle some free-willed undead out of the Mortuary and perform experiments upon them to determine whether or not they’re really alive or have just been bobbed into believing they’re dead. Thus far her screed’s not gone unnoticed by the Temples, the Heralds of Dust and the Hardheads, but it’s entirely likely that if she’s prepared to continue probing into the mysteries of life and death these three groups will put up some pretty heavy resistance.

Source: Jon Winter-Holt,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *