As a fanatical servant of the Liche Lord, Friedrich von Unaussprechlichen had been bequeathed many gifts from his undead master; the most important of course being the gift of life after his ruined body was saved from the clutches of a pack of ravenous ghouls.
Another gift was the barbarian, who had suddenly appeared among Friedrich’s followers after silently stealing up to the camp fire one evening. “I dreamt of Bone Face” grunted Krum, “he led me here.”
Friedrich had discovered his next gift quite by chance – on a whim he had decided to explore a ruined tavern, only to discover Morgas - a grizzled veteran who had faithfully led dozens of expeditions into the frozen city for his employer, only to brutally slay the entire band one moonless night. Von Unaussprechlichen found him the next day, standing stock still among the carnage, humming an ancient lullaby. Upon seeing the wizard he dropped to one knee and offered his bloody axe in supplication.
Perhaps the most disappointing gift was ‘Worm’ – a small, slight fellow (it suited Friedrich to assume he was male, although his high, tittering voice and long robes made it hard to tell) who was supposed to be his new apprentice. Worm was proficient enough, but his slimy, obsequious manner and the way he constantly fidgeted with the small brass pipe he used in lieu of a wand set the wizard’s remaining teeth on edge.
They found the strangest and most unsettling gift one cold and misty morning, standing just outside the cracked stone circle within which they had made their camp.
“What is it?” asked his apprentice, which in itself made Friedrich uneasy, for Worm never questioned, or indeed ventured an independent opinion on, anything.
Keeping his distance, the wizard studied the creature: it’s front half dominated by a hellish toothy maw of dripping teeth, flanked by two large horns. It’s hide was covered in a strange blue-ish material, neither fur nor feather. But the worse part of this thing was it’s hindquarters – a horrifying assemblage of brass gears, rods and levers.
As it shifted it’s back legs slightly gears whirred and valves hissed open and shut. In jerking movements it turned to face the pair and lowered it’s eyeless head.
“I’ve no idea – demon? Construct? An abomination from the breeding pits perhaps… Whatever it is, it appears to be at our disposal…”
“It's beautiful..." Worm exclaimed, giggling and hopping slightly from one foot to the other. "Such a marvel is a joy to behold!”
Von Unaussprechlichen looked askance at his apprentice and frowned.
A while back I signed up for the Lead-Adventure forum’s sprue exchange, where members can put any unwanted bits into a box and post them off to the next person on the list, who takes what he/she fancies, puts in some more bits and then posts it on. By the time it reached me, near the end of the list, there wasn’t much that I could use, except these minis – some of them missing a weapon or shield but nothing that couldn’t be remedied. I thought it’d be fun to use them to beef up my cultist warband. I'm not particularly enamoured with my paintwork on these, here they are!