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Baroness of Uigmuir
by Michael Berry
Myra McDuff was a woman of great beauty. Standing 5’9” tall with an hourglass figure and a mop of black curly hair coming to her shoulders she was the dream of every boy at the Great School of Magic and would turn heads any time she walked into a room when she was a student. Life however was not kind to Myra and instead today she floats into rooms and is a translucent ghost of the 25 year old beauty she was when she died.
II. Personality & Quirks
Early in life Myra was joyous, carefree woman with a strong talent for magic and an ambition to climb the ladder of Glantrian politics. Today however she only has one ambition, one single desire left to her, to be reunited with her son. Nothing else matters to her.
III. History &Background
Myra was born in AC 946 in the village of Dalmeny located in the Free Province of Tchernovodsk to a Kaelic father and Boldavian mother. Myra’s parents were both adventurers before retiring to a quiet life of farming. Neither of her parents was magically inclined so it came as a great surprise that testing found Myra to have excellent affinity for magic. Knowing the key to success in Glantri was to not just be an arcaner but a graduate of the Great School Myra’s parents dipped into their savings from their adventuring days and sent Myra to the Great School of Magic in AC 956.
Life at the Great School was a joy for young Myra. While always possessing a gregarious personality she matured into a truly beautiful woman and found the social life of the school, and Glantri City as stimulating as her studies at the Great School. Myra developed a real strong interest in Glantrian politics and would spend much free time at the Parliament building, first in the visitor gallery watching the controlled chaos of Glantrian politics in action and later as an intern for the representative of Prince Georg von Drachenfels. She came to the decision that she wanted to get into politics and to do so she needed to become a noble. In her last years at the Great School Myra worked hard to cultivate social contacts using her beauty and charm and when she graduated the Great School in AC 965 she had amassed a good many important contacts and friends.
After graduation Myra took a position with the Glantrian Internal Revenue Service and was sent to the Free Province of The Western Czaikov Hills where she worked and waited for 2 years before her opportunity to move into the ranks of the Nobility came. In AC 967 the Archduke of Westheath died heirless thus all interested nobles and perspective nobles geared up for a series of Awards Festivals that would leave a Barony open at the end for a new Wizard to join the ranks of Glantrian Nobility. Once the series of Awards Festivals ran their course to the last one, it was the Barony of Uigmuir was the Barony that was open for competition for all prospective nobles.
A six week campaign preceded the election and Myra called in all the favors owed, friendships made and barely edged the Averoignian wizard Thierry Fournier to win the Barony of Uigmuir. Myra immediately fulfilled her promise to House Crownguard, given to gain their vote, and reestablished the political alliance with Crownguard that Uigmuir had had for many years under the McAllister clan. Myra resisted the temptation to move immediately to Glantri City and directly participate in parliamentary politics and instead decided to establish herself in Uigmuir and just as importantly for her, to find a husband, marry and have an heir. Suitors came but she found all lacking however finally during the winter of AC 969-970 she found a suitable man, one she actually felt some affection for, a handsome merchant, wealthy, yet kindly middle aged arcaner and was engaged to be married in the summer of AC 970. . Unfortunately for Myra things did not work out for her as she might have hoped for she would never marry him, or anyone.
In the spring of AC 970 an Orc hoard assembled in Wendarian Ranges under a charismatic self styled King, named Harak, who wanted to show his prowess by invading the lands of men. Harak had heard of the young inexperienced noblewoman ruling over Uigmuir and decided to launch his surprise attack there. The orc attack by approximately 500 warriors was indeed a surprise and overran most of the Barony over the course of several days. Myra’s Tower was defended bravely by her tower guard, aided substantially by her own magic, but it could hold out no more than a couple of days. Myra was taken captive and brought before the self styled orc king. Harak was quite taken with her beauty and decided to make Myra his queen. When Myra refused him and tried to escape, Harak had her beaten to try to break her spirit and would have had her tongue ripped out but she could not cast any spells as she did not have her spellbook. The beatings finally broke Myra and though still she still did not willingly come to the orc, she did stop resisting and trying to escape. After a week of a decidedly unhappy honeymoon in the hills of Uigmuir, accompanied by continued sacking and pillaging of the Barony by Harak’s horde, word finally came of the approach of Glantrian army units from Ft. Nordling. Myra was given a respite from the orcs affection while Harak made his battle plans and saw to reorganizing his forces for the coming battle.
The orc forces were crushed in the following battle and retreated back into the mountains. Myra was taken with them and remained with Harak as his queen. During the retreat Myra discovered that she was pregnant with Harak’s child. In Uigmuir search parties were commissioned to find her, for she had been spotted during the battle and was known to have been taken by the orc and still alive after the initial sack of the Barony. None of the initial privately funded rescue groups were able to successfully find and free her from his captivity. After six months political pressure exerted by her friends and admirers got the Glantrian army to begin sending strong armed forces into the Wendarian Ranges in order to find her, as well as put Harak down, but those were not immediately successful either.
The next several months were monotonous for Myra as they moved during the night and hid underground during the day avoiding the Glantrian army units searching for Harak and for Myra. Myra was relatively well taken care of; especially after she could hide the fact she was pregnant no more. Harak took great pride in his future child, and bragged his horde that he was going to have a son by the human wizard and that in time he would grow to be the king of all orcs. After 9 long months the day came when Myra finally gave birth to her child. It was a half human half orc boy. Harak was overjoyed at the birth of his son. Myra felt great love as well for her son, though he was born with distinct orc facial features. Harak named his son Horrachk, though Myra liked to call him Hack. Myra’s life as queen and mother of Hack continued uneventfully for the next month and half until the day the chance to escape finally came.
Harak received word that a Glantrian army patrol was approaching from the south and he set off with some of his best warriors to lay an ambush for them if they approached too closely to their hideout. Myra saw her chance to try to get away and took her son and got away from the camp. Unfortunately for her Harak caught up to her and in a fit of unrestrained anger he attacked her and severely wounded her. Myra was left for dead and Harak took their son back to the camp and retreated deeper into the mountains. Myra however was not dead and was soon after found unconscious by the Glantrian patrol. She was taken back the Tower of Uigmuir and spent the next week in a coma before finally regaining consciousness. Her improvement seemed to be helped by the scores of friends and well-wishers that came to see her. Not a word was said of the details of her ordeal or of her son, except to her seneschal. However two weeks after she regained consciousness Myra McDuff suddenly died in her sleep.
However it was only the physical body of Myra McDuff that finally gave out because of her physical ordeal compounded by her severe injuries, her spirit was to live on as she rose again in the form of a Ghost. A unique form of Ghost still capable of casting spells. Able to communicate through means of a ventriloquism spell the only person aware of her changed state was her seneschal. To the outside Myra McDuff the Baroness of Uigmuir from then on became a recluse, refusing to see anyone presumably because of the mental scars from her ordeal. Her seneschal would offer excuses as being away doing research or being sick. Soon her friends moved on and the potential visitors and concerned friends moved on and the flow of unwanted visitors dried up. The spirit of Myra McDuff could not rest until she saw her son again so she commissioned adventurers through her seneschal, who used a agent, to bring to her a white haired half orc boy. For several years the occasional one would be brought to the Seneschal how would in turn present him to the ghost of Myra. None however were her son. Though she never gave up hope her current state of finances would not allow further commissions and thus even though she never spent a moment not thinking of him, there was no one actively searching for him. Thus his later (see Angus McClintock McDuff bio) ascendance in the Great School, first as a half-orc student then a otherwise undistinguished half-orc professor, passed unnoticed to Myra in the isolation of her living quarters in her remote dominion far from Glantri City.
For decades the spirit of Myra McDuff, brooding in her tower, watching o’er her land, continued to mourn the memory of her lost son till fate finally intervened on Myra’s side. Word reached the ear of her seneschal of a half-orc wizard who was now teaching at the Great School who spent many years living among the orcs and studying them and having first hand experiences of the war between the dwarfs, shadow elves, and humanoids in a underground city below the Broken Lands. The seneschal brought this information to Myra and used magical scurrying devices to look upon this mage and with a mother’s instinct knew for a certainty that this was her son. Angus was sent an invitation to visit the Baroness to discuss ‘academic’ matters and plans were drawn up with her seneschal to declare Angus her heir as she would be finally able to rest and truly die. After finally seeing her son after over four decades, and looking upon her son with such love and pride in his growth into a respected scholar and wizard, the spirit of Myra McDuff was able to finally rest and her son, Angus McClintock, was declared the rightful heir to the Barony of Uigmuir and thus renamed by her decree, Angus McDuff.
IV. Web of Intrigue
As a young student at the Great School, Myra had a large circle of friends, acquaintances, and admirers. As the years passed and she withdrew from the world the only contact she held was with her seneschal who was her ears, mouth and eyes in the mortal living world.
V. Statistics & Style of Magic
Statistics: 10th-level mage (AC 970); Str 7, Int 17, Wis 10, Dex 18, Con 8, Cha 17; AL - Neutral, 14 HD Ghost AL- Neutral (AC 971)
Languages: Thyatian common, Kaelic, Boldavian, Orc
“..after what she likely went through, I can not blame Myra for shutting herself off from everyone and becoming a recluse..”
(Overheard in numerous parties in Glantri City for many year)