Unfolding events in Dezzavold
The Drow of Dezzavold are united in their desire to rid themselves of the Drey. There is now widespread acknowledgement that their former mistresses ‘enlightened ways’ are the reason that the Black Heart of Nyarleth was able to take over their city. They should have been more drowic, then their Goddess would not have forsaken them. There would still be torment and death, but it would be civilised drow at the top of the picking order, rather than barbaric Drey.
Eranade Dezzav, the Ghost, was not cut from the same cloth as her ‘enlightened’ mother, she is a proper drow, evil and self serving to the core. Thus whilst on the face of it, the Drey fit her public aspirations for violent conquest, she hates and despises the Black Heart and all her soldiery as usurpers in her city. Thus, whilst spying on Corwyl and the world above for the Black Heart, she is also plotting with the remaining priestesses of Lolth to overthrow the Black Heart.
This underground resistance movement has sent its remaining competent agent, a discordant , to join the household of the new Princess. She is planning and preparing for this little girl to be kidnapped. Their plan is to continue to lay preparations to attack Corwyl. When the remaining military strength of Dezzavold marches to make war on the Asrai (their war aim is to slay the Ancestral Speaker, as they recognise that she is capable of massing opposition against them), the remaining plotters will present the Princess as a gift to the Black Heart.
Forgileill was captured after being poisoned with a distillate of a drug known amongst the drow as snake weed, a fairly strong euphoric. The drug was added to her evening meal. It is certain that the remainder of her household were also drugged. Her recollections of her capture and subsequent flight to Dezzavold are therefore quite hazy. She mostly remembers shadowy serpentine forms and indistinct images of submerged cities. The hallucinations take hold and remain with her until she is delivered to the Priestess of Lolth, whose plot this is.
The plotters gift to their hated queen, the innocent young Princess of the World Above, however, will not be as newly captured as they claim. They plan on altering her to being a sacrificial assassin . Disguised as a plaything, they hope that the slave princess will have a chance to poison or otherwise slay the Black Heart. There is a general expectation that she will not survive. If she were to, then it would be a matter of two heartbeats before she was given over to the Priestess of Lolth as a suitable first sacrifice for the new regime. After all, they will have found out that she is a descendant of the hated Gwathlo , who led the last successful foray into drow places. And they are good at holding grudges.
The rest of the Drow plan on attacking the Drey from the rear, once the Drey are engaged with the Asrai. Then the Drow will withdraw to Dezzavold, to hold it against any Drey who might survive the battle in the world above. Dezzavold will belong to the drow once more, the Drey will be gone the Asrai severely wounded by what had come to pass.
Irrunshaye , by the time this all happens, has developed some sympathy for Forgileill. She will instruct the Support Crew that the captive is to be delivered to the priestess unmolested. She will remain behind to hamper any rescue attempt. The support crew will also shoot her with a poisoned dart as well . “You bastards, I’ll kill you all.” “We’re already as good dead, bitch. And if we can’t have her then we’ll have you. Besides, this has to look authentic…”
The prisoner will be transported to a ‘safehouse’ within Dezzavold and given over the Priestess. The last surviving priestess of Lolth, Rohn Abrexy, has been in hiding since the coup. The capture of a Princess from the World Above is a gift she cannot afford to squander. The drow are full of diabolical plans of betrayal. Forgileill, still drugged, is shown the captured ilin; he will then be sacrificed. Forgileill will be fed on spiders. She will be flogged (for fun) until unconscious.
They then get a captured mind flayer to mess about with her brain. A drowic bard will be called, to impart the skills of entertainment and a repertoire of drowic performance arts. That poor girl thought that she would be teaching, but the priestess has no time for such shenanigans. The transfer of ability will be accomplished by opening both of their heads up and surgically gifting Forgileill the appropriate skills and lore from the poor unfortunate donor bard, who is restrained by her erstwhile allies, screaming and wriggling throughout. This ‘open skull’ surgery is conducted in a flesh crafter’s operating studio.
The pre-op consisted of the ithillid penetrating Forgiliell’s brain whilst she was restrained on a slab. She lay there screaming as the mind flayer’s tentacles entered her nostrils and ears, oozing their way through the openings in her skull, tearing her sinus membranes and inner ear on their journey to contact her synapses. She could not feel the ends of the tentacles hungrily stroking and penetrating her brain, but she knew it was happening, all the while suffering with the physical agony of the evil creature’s tentacles splitting open her nostrils and ears. Knowing full well that the creature would rather suck her brain and eat it than do as he was bidden, the ithillid slave-surgeon filled her with dread. Having established where the implants would go, he withdrew his pseudopodia, leaving Forgileill’s senses ruined.
The actual surgery saw Forgileill strapped down on a table, she was conscious throughout as her scalp was peeled back, like the rind of some bizarre fruit. The top of her skull was removed. The ithillid then carefully cut into her brain with his tentacles and placed in the wedges and slithers from the donor brain, before using his considerable psychic powers to connect the grafts into her mind. At the end of the process, her skull was replaced with drowic bone grafting techniques and her scalp sewn back into place. No such care was taken with the unfortunate donor.
The ithillid is also bidden to programme her to behave in certain ways. He was to remove her spell casting ability (bar innate abilities that served to entertain) and suppress her courage and combative skills (not remove them completely, as that would then mean that she was less fun for her tormentors). She is to obey the commands of any priestess of Lolth. She is to appear to obey the commands of the Black Heart of Nyarleth, up until a suitable opportunity exists to kill her; this is to be taken, even if it result’s in Forgileill’s death.
The mind flayer still sees the drow as his enemy. Thus he puts protections in place for Forgileill’s Órë, as well as information that will be useful in fighting against them in the future, including knowledge of the Ashen Compact. He adds the caveat “up until a suitable opportunity exists to kill her” to the command to obey the priestess, along with a certain hidden way into and out of Dezzavold. The ithillid’s inner wall within her mind means that she actually now has two personalities. Most of her is Forgileill Gwathlo. But a small part is a drow slave, with this other sub-personality in place she can be subservient and do whatever it takes to survive the ordeal of living amongst the drow, only putting her drowic slave self aside when she is safe once more.
In the intervening time between bouts of surgery, during which she is fully aware, Forgileill is kept drugged. On one occasion the priestess lets her recover and then slowly, over a period of nearly twelve hours, pulls all of her finger and toe nails out, laughing all the time. After this Remmidrodiko, still the city’s foremost slave master, is approached for Abyssal Dust, a highly addictive, much stronger euphoric. Remmidrodiko, as soon as he learns of her existence, obviously covets Forgiliell for himself, and in the interests of limiting knowledge of Forgiliell’s existence, offer’s to administer the drug himself.
Always wary of the Priestess, Remmidrodiko cultivates his relationship with Forgiliell. He begins administering Abyssal Dust in the guise of medicine and soon nurtures this in to into maddening addiction. Through his deliberate misinformation, she is swiftly rendered dependant on his good offices for her supply. Of course, being spaced out she doesn’t care, but it does mean that Rohn has to let the slave master in on the plan, as he will have to maintain a supply to Forgiliell whilst she is in the Black Heart’s ownership. The slave master becomes obsessed with the notion of having Forgiliell as his own personal plaything, probably because she is inaccessible to him. So he plots his own schemes.
Remmidrodiko’s aspirations come to nothing, however, as Forgiliell’s system has to be ‘clean’(ish) for the flesh crafter. So she is brought crashing down, and realising that he is now surplus to the plot’s requirements, Remmidrodiko flees, before the priestess can slay him. He’s probably still running now. But trapped in her own private withdrawal nightmare, Forgiliell barely notices.
Most of the city’s artisans had either been killed or had ceased practising under the rule of the Black Heart. It seemed that all of the cornerstones of drowic culture, debased, depraved and disgusting as they were, were linked to the worship of Lolth, which was now banned under pain of eternal torment in undeath. The high priestess called in another favour to further her plan.
The flesh crafter had Forgileill chained by the ankles and wrists to a large ‘X’ shaped stone bench. Again there was little thought to anaesthetics. The man was obviously getting his thrills by performing surgery on conscious patents. His hands were inside her body and he would occasionally amuse himself by touching her nerves, causing her body to arc clear of the cold stone, her heels drumming a spastic tattoo as she screamed until her throat bled, her partly healed head hanging in space between the ‘arms’ of the ‘X’.
The city’s last competent flesh crafter was engaged to alter her looks slightly, to bring her more in line with the drowic ideal of beauty. The drow refer to this as ‘diabolic allure’, Forgileill is now attractive in a dark and somewhat depraved way. Others are conscious of her potentially adversarial nature, but still find themselves drawn to her and the dangerous aura of sexuality she exudes. The flesh crafter re-built her hearing and sense of smell. He replaced her finger and toenails. The final act of surgery was to implant fungal filters that would grow through her body and allow her, a surface elf to survive the diet and environment in Dezzavold.
She will also be infected with courtesan spiders, but not until after being impregnated by a drow male . This will result in what begins as an ectopic pregnancy known to the drow as an unborn saviour – designed to absorb and suffer from any person affecting spell directed against the elf.
The priestess had flirted with idea of sending the Princess from the World Above to one of the more reputable brothels, the Palace Dujaers, for a little instruction. It seemed unlikely to her that the young princess would have any experience at all. The drow like sex as much as the next twisted elf, but find it much more satisfying when it involves humiliation and degradation. If the Black Heart’s gift shied away at the wrong moment, then the plan was unlikely to get very far. However, upon reflection, the priestess decided that it may well be more fun for the Black Heart to believe that she is being given an innocent.
Forgiliell also learns that the old ‘over enlightened’ Queen, Lenerasa Dezzav had another daughter, Solfaera. This comes up through someone’s idle observation that Solfaera and Forgiliell are the same age. It transpires that this other daughter escaped the massacre of the Dezzav family due to her enlightened mother sending her sight seeing to the World Above, to see stars for herself. Evidently she learned or was forewarned of the massacre and has remained in exile ever since.
At some point, Forgiliell will be healed, prepared and sent as a gift to the Black Heart. The rebels expect the Black Heart to be interested in a real Princess from the World Above, even though they know that the Black Heart has no idea just how valuable a prisoner she is. However, they are confident that the other ‘daggers’ will let her know and that she will be pleased enough to seek to divert herself with her new slave.
Forgileill has been given the bard’s entertainment abilities, she can recite a decent repertoire of screeching murder ballads and perform a number of seductive dance routines. Although ostensibly for the entertainment of the Black Heart, as well as the mundane arts imparted to her, the ithillid had also secretly given her the ability to sing all five of the drow bard’s songs of power. The flesh crafters have sensitised Forgileill so that she ‘performs’ when tortured, she makes pleasing (to drow) noises as she screams and whimpers. Her body arcs into pleasing shapes as pain is inflicted. She has been changed on a psychological and physical level to cope with humiliation, abuse and torture that would otherwise result in permanent psychological and physical damage. And she heals swiftly, to enable the torture (fun) to continue at a rate that would otherwise slay her.
All of this is to make the Black Heart accept her gift. It is hoped that after the Black Heart has abused and tortured the Princess from the World Above almost to death, may be more than once, that there will be an opportunity for her to murder the Black Heart.
Her hair is dyed blonde and she is dressed in a spidersilk facsimile of what the drow believe a Gwaithor maiden’s wedding gown looks like. The poisoned chalice is ready, it is time to get the Black Heart to take a sip.
 A sort of spy; ‘one who sows discord,’ in fact.