4 Gozran, 4711
The Professorwas buried yesterday; it is a surreal observation despite its simplicity. To think that he had survived, and unharmed it seems, fills me with a strange sense of uncertainty that I cannot quite place. The strange events of the past day, and stranger details of the Professor’s will seems a grim portent that his death will cause great ripples spreading wide and far to a fate none but the Lady of Graves could foretell.
The caravan I traveled with arrived in Ravengro just after midday. I proceeded straight to the Lorrimor Estate after receiving directions from an approaching merchant come to claim his wares. The prevalence of Pharasma’s worship I had heard so much of must have counteracted (for the moment) the equally numerous tales of Ustalavic suspicion towards outsiders. The estate was easy to identify, its size and ornamentation expensive but sensible though far less extravagant than I expected for a man so widely known and traveled.
Entering into the familiar atmosphere of a a home in mourning, my suspicions were laid to rest for in the coffin was indeed that of the Professorthough my confusion increased just as much because of it. There were signs of work done to the face to a presentable form after the accident I learned later of, which caused the Professor’s death-the priests did well on him. Conversing with his daughter Kendraon the specifics of the coming funeral I took account of those who arrived to pay their respects before seeking Father Grimburrow, a young woman clad in fine ceremonial armor doing her best to provide aid to the clearly affected Kendra, a Garundi man with his hair in braided cords, a powerfully built man whose bored attitude seemed out of place, and a tawny stranger caked in dirt and mud who carried a strange contraption, which i have learned to hate, on his back.
These individuals, along with myself and the Professor’s daughter were to be the pallbearers. Councilman Vashayn, as well as the owner of the local tavern the Laughing Demon and his son, and the woman who ran the nearby Apothecary shop were the witnesses to our procession to the Restlands.
Despite the sanctity of our course and of the cemetery grounds, we were made to remember the suspicion and paranoia of Ustalav’s people. A man named Gibbs leading a mob of peasants did their best to prevent the Professor’s burial on the grounds of many doubtful claims. Despite attempts for diplomacy and reason, the locals, as well as the accented rogue Mellic, were determined to disrupt the solemnity of the occasion with violence. Fortunately, the band was dispersed with little difficulty and none were seriously hurt though I am certain whatever volatile weapon Mellic carries, as well as his eager willingness to use it will cause problems in the future.
In spite of Gibbs’ foolishness, the Professor’s burial was duly relevant and respectful. I gave my farewell I believed he deserved a decade ago; despite the circumstances I was pleased to be able to deliver it at the appropriate time. Mr. Desericus also spoke in turn; I tried to listen though I found myself too irritated at the lack of respect given to the dead as Mellic walked coarsely away from the burial. Mr. Whitman’s history was, as was to be discovered, complicated and less than pleasant and did not speak though I believe Kendra was satisfied with her farewell to her father.
The burial being concluded, the will was unsealed and read; those present at the cemetery were each as well named principles in the Professor’s will. Kendra was bequeathed the Professor’s home and belonging’s as would be expected. However what was left to myself and the others was far stranger; a request by the Professor to deliver four dangerous tomes he researched as part of his lifelong quest to understand the methods of evil individuals in order to combat them, to a Professor Montagnie Crewl at Lepidstadt University after one month, during which we were additionally asked to look after Kendra and ensure her affairs and well being were in order. We each were additionally to be gifted one hundred platinum pieces to be distributed by an Embreth Daramind. I confess in my wildest imaginings I never anticipated myself in such a situation…
Among the books left by the Professor in a locked chest, I was shocked to find, was the hateful religious texts of foul Urgathoa and Zon-Kuthon, whose titles I will not transcribe here, as well as a strange volume entitled “On Verified Madness” containing information on the Dark Tapestry and a locked tome without a key. Despite my warnings, everyone was eager to grab the books and read their contents. Mr. Desericus reached for The Midnight Lord’s tome and was painfully drained in some way (I hope that is all) though I could find no wound on him. We each agreed not to take or read any of the volumes without the others present’ if the Professor was wary of them we should be as well.
Also included was one of the Professor’s diaries which contained information on each of the five inheritors of the Professor’s final request. I am shocked and amazed that the Professor suspected my origins! I thought myself responsible for his “death” by not telling him and now under the pressure of the past day’s revelations I am unsure what to conclude. More unnerving than this however is the discovery of the Professor’s efforts against a group of undead-seeking necromancers known as the Whispering Way who seem to be involved in a dark plot within the nearby Harrowstone ruins that may threaten the safety of Ravengro and moreover, possibly the death of the Professor!
I do not enjoy the circumstances I find myself in although if I am to honor the Professor’s wishes by keeping his daughter safe, these ruins must be investigated to ensure whatever evil is being worked there does not threaten Ravengro. I find myself experiencing a nervousness I have not felt for nearly ten years, though the significance of these uncanny events force my hand. Those who study the wisdom of Pharasma know the difference between coincidence and fate…