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by David Paige

So now we move on to Arik. Here is the original description of Arik from (B3) Palace of the Silver Princess.

Arik is an ancient, evil being of great power. He is also known as Arik of the Hundred Eyes, and is sometimes worshipped as a god. For his many crimes, Arik was banished to a special dimension centuries ago to be imprisoned there for all eternity.

Arik has been seeking to escape from the prison dimension through the ages. And he desires to hake over Haven and enslave all its people. He has at last managed to send one of his eyes across the dimensional barriers into the heart of the mountains. There, the dwarves found Arik's ruby eye and brought it to the palace, not knowing the evil they were bringing to their beloved valley. The ruby, though larger than most gems, looks like any other ruby and through the Protector would have sensed the evil, by the time they ruby's influence was felt, it was too late. Arik has already struck.

The ruby is linked to Arik. It has allowed him to channel some of his evil magical power past the dimensional barriers into Haven and the power of the ruby attracts evil, chaotic monsters. Arik hopes to use the ruby "eye" when the time is right, to open the way and cross the dimensional border.

The power of the ruby has killed the crops and brought disease to the animals. It has drawn orc, goblin, and hobgoblin hordes into Haven to fight fro its master. It has even brought the evil cleric, Catharandamus into the palace, to prepare the ceremony that will allow Arik to cross the dimensional barriers. The ruby has turned many of the palace inhabitants to stone and trapped the princess and the mysterious stranger inside itself. Finally, the ruby has created a magical field around the palace to prevent help from arriving and stopping Catharandamus.

Also, stats given in the WotI, book One.

Arik; Celestial, Sphere of Entropy; AL C. A violent, evil Immortal banished to a prison dimension for his crimes; he seeks ways to return to the multiverse. (B3, page 4 and B1-9, page 47)

There was a few other references, some found in the Vaults, that gave Arik a portfolio of madness, chaos, nightmares, massacres, beholders

Those are the only sources found on Arik, so I fleshed him out a bit for my campaign world. As stated before, I had Arik banished because he was the creator of the Draconians of Mystara. He had racked up many other crimes that deserved banishment, but this was the straw that broke the camel's back. The dragons were absolutely outraged, even Red Dragons were appalled, at these corrupt mockeries. This creation also violated the Immortal rule: On the Prime Plane, Direct Action Against Mortals is Forbidden. Well, Arik's direct creation of the Draconians violated this law without question. As a result, he was banished to the Prison Dimension. His creations were placed into stasis and hidden somewhere in the Known World. The only reason the Draconians were not destroyed was because the Dragons wanted to find a way to revert the Draconians back into health eggs or dragon off-spring, basically undo Arik's evil.

So, Arik waited in the Prison Dimension for centuries. Over time, Arik was able to send a handful of his Eyes into the Prime, I'm saying 8 of them. Treel discovered one such eye and learned the properties of the Eye and looked for more. Treel was able to gather 5 of them, one which was used and destroyed in B3, leaving him 4. That means 3 Eyes are unaccounted for, which Arik is hoping that one of his servants will find and free him from not only the Prison Dimension, but of Treel's service too.

Arik's Eyes are acting as the main power source for Treel's plans. The Eyes are gathering and controlling humanoid armies for Treel and his servants. The Eyes are also able to communicate with each other, acting as communication network for Treel. Treel is also using the Eyes as other power sources for other mystical plans that are currently unknown. One plan that Treel has for the Eyes is to find a way to expand the corrupting power on the land, as it did in Haven. Treel plans on blighting the land before an invasion, destroying the food reserves of the enemy, thereby making it weaker and more vulnerable.

Arik hates that he is being used like some kind of magic item. He feels that this is not the proper way to treat an Immortal. Of course, what is really bothering Arik is that he is seeing his powers being utilised much more effectively than he has. Arik privately admits that he is not smart or subtle enough to implement the plans that he is being used in. This only drives the already mad Immortal into a frenzy.

He wants to be free, but now he especially wants to be free so that he can get away from the knowledge that he has been an ineffective schemer. He has threatened, demanded, petitioned, and even pleaded with Treel to set him free, but nothing so far. Arik has recently struck a deal with the Shadow Lord, whom also shares a hatred of Treel, to set him free. Arik has promised the Shadow Lord vast powers and secrets upon his release. Of course, Arik will only drive him insane because Arik believes that Ultimate Power can only be found outside normal perceptions (ie stark raving mad).

An interesting note, Treel does plan on setting Arik free. Treel is basically setting up Arik to take the fall for all of his schemes. Whether his current plans fail or succeed, Arik will be "revealed" to be the power behind this. The Immortals will then pursuit and punish Arik for once again violating the Prime Immortal rule. Arik will of course try and tell the other Immortals about Treel, but who is going to believe Arik? Also, the idea that an Immortal can stay hidden for so long is preposterous in their views. Also, the evidence points to Arik's guilt: it was the Eyes that were the Power source for just about all of the Plots that the Immortals may discover. As Arik is blamed and punished, Treel will slip away undetected. Treel still desires the anonymity of his Immortal stature and Arik is the key to this. This is probably the most important aspect of Arik's use to Treel. Treel also suspects the allegiance between Arik and the Shadow Lord, which is what he planed. The Shadow Lord is a part of Treel's plan to release Arik. How is the Shadow Lord going to learn to free Arik? With the information that Treel will secretly provide the Shadow Lord of course.