Red Moon Roleplaying

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Filtering by Category: Curse of Strahd

Curse of Strahd 08: Tastevin

The color of the wine is one indicator of how mature it is. As wine is stored and aged in dark cellars, Burgundian winemakers in the Middle Ages created the tastevin, a shallow saucer-like cup made of silver. The shiny inner surface would allow them to see the color of the wine even in candlelight.

For hundreds of years it was simply a tool for winemakers but around the year 1700 it became fashionable for affluent Frenchmen to carry the tastevin in their pockets as a status symbol. Made by master silversmiths the tastevin would be engraved with the wearer’s name and be highly prized possessions.

This changed with the French revolution when opulent displays of wealth, like carrying a silver cup around wherever you went, fell out of fashion

Campaign: “Curse of Strahd”, Dungeons & Dragons
Music by: Metatron Omega, Flowers for Bodysnatchers & Wordclock

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  A prized possession.

A prized possession.

Curse of Strahd 07: Wallachia

The area known as Wallachia is a historical region of Romania that, under the leadership of the legendary voivode Radu the Black, broke free from Hungary in 1290. As the years passed the Ottoman Empire was growing rapidly on the southern border and came to dominate much of the Balkans, including Wallachia which was ultimately forced to become a vassal of the growing empire in 1417.

Accepting this status caused an internal crisis in the country that its leader, Vlad II Dracul, had to navigate carefully. The Ottoman Empire, knowing that Vlad had been a member of the ”Order of the Dragon”, a group of noblemen who opposed the Ottoman invasion, demanded Vlad II hand over his sons as hostages. He reluctantly accepted this and continued to rule an increasingly unruly nation.

In 1447 Vlad II was assassinated by Wallachian noblemen. To avoid the country spiraling deeper in to chaos the Ottoman Empire released Vlad’s son, Vlad III Dracul, to take the reins of the nation. Vlad III put the conspirators to death and brought order... but did so with an iron fist that spared no cruelty to those that challenged him. He earned the nickname “the Impaler” because of his favored method of execution.

Campaign: “Curse of Strahd”, Dungeons & Dragons
Music by: Metatron Omega, Flowers for Bodysnatchers & Wordclock

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  The principality of Wallachia.

The principality of Wallachia.

Curse of Strahd 06: Métis

The French word Métis is derived from the latin mixtus and refers to a hybrid or someone of mixed ancestry. The term is most commonly used for Canadians with dual Indian-White ancestry, typically tracing their lineage back to unions between European trappers and traders and Algonquian women.

After the fall of New France in 1763 a distinctly unique identity began to foment among the Métis and they even formed their own nation. This Métis nation resisted the colonization efforts of Canada, a country that didn't exactly offer equality. 

This culminated in the North-West rebellion, an uprising by the Métis and a few other aboriginal groups against the Canadian state. The uprising was crushed... but today the Métis are recognized within the Canadian constitution as an ethnic group with their own culture and given special aboriginal rights.

Campaign: “Curse of Strahd”, Dungeons & Dragons
Music by: Metatron Omega, Flowers for Bodysnatchers & Wordclock

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  The Trapper's Bride.

The Trapper's Bride.

Curse of Strahd 05: Alfr

In the Prose Edda, a book written in 1220 by the Icelandic poet Snorri Sturluson, two kinds of elves are described. The Ljósálfar are the light elves, fairer than the sun to look at, dwelling in the heavenly Álfheimr. Then there are the Dökkálfar, dark and swarthy and living underground.

The light and dark elves have been interpreted to be Sturluson taking the Christian stories of angels and demons and incorporating them in to Norse mythology.  As the "Elucidarium", an encyclopedia of Christian stories had been translated to Icelandic in the previous century it is believed that this could have served as an inspiration for Sturluson.

While the duality of light and dark, good and evil, are not unique to Christianity, it is still believed the stories of the light and dark elves may be one of few early examples of Christian stories being "paganised".

Campaign: “Curse of Strahd”, Dungeons & Dragons
Music by: Metatron Omega, Flowers for Bodysnatchers & Wordclock

Web: https://www.redmoonroleplaying.com
iTunes: http://apple.co/2wTNqHx
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  The light and the dark.

The light and the dark.

Curse of Strahd 04: Cartomancy

Not long after playing cards appeared in Europe, around the 1400’s and 1500’s, they began to be used for fortune telling and divination. The tarot deck of playing cards especially became widely used for this purpose.

There were theories that the practice originated in ancient Egypt and the mysteries of Isis. The French priest Antoine Court de Gébelin even asserted that the name Tarot came from the Egyptian words "Tar" (road) and "Ro" (king), and translated to ”The Royal Road of Life”.

Other authors took this further and connected the use of the Tarot with the Romani people and asserted that, not only was the Tarot of Egyptian origin, so were the Romani people. 

The mistaken belief that Romani are in fact Egyptians is the etymology of the word “Gypsy”. That word, as well as connecting the Romani with the Tarot in popular culture, is something still very much alive today.

Campaign: “Curse of Strahd”, Dungeons & Dragons
Music by: Metatron Omega, Flowers for Bodysnatchers & Wordclock

Web: https://www.redmoonroleplaying.com
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  The future is in the cards.

The future is in the cards.

Curse of Strahd 03: Renfield Syndrome

Renfield syndrome, or clinical vampirism, is the unusual obsession with drinking blood. The syndrome is named after Dracula’s follower R.M. Renfield who appears in Bram Stoker’s novel from 1897

The condition has appeared in psychiatric literature dating as far back as 1892 and has usually been mentioned in connection with extraordinarily violent crimes. It’s not, however, recognized by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) and the very few cases that have been recorded could be regarded as forms of schizophrenia or paraphilia.

Campaign: “Curse of Strahd”, Dungeons & Dragons
Music by: Metatron Omega, Flowers for Bodysnatchers & Wordclock

Web: https://www.redmoonroleplaying.com
iTunes: http://apple.co/2wTNqHx
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  "Love and Pain", Edvard Munch 1895

"Love and Pain", Edvard Munch 1895

Curse of Strahd 02: Shroud of Turin

The Shroud of Turin is believed by some to be the burial shroud that Jesus of Nazareth was wrapped in when he was buried after the crucifixion.  On it remains the negative image of what is believed to be his face. The true nature of the shroud is a controversial topic however with many studies coming out supporting the shroud’s authenticity, and many rejecting it.

A digital study in 1978 reported detecting the impressions of coins placed on both eyes. A two-lepton coin on the right eyelid and a one-lepton coin on the left.

Campaign: “Curse of Strahd”, Dungeons & Dragons
Music by: Metatron Omega, Flowers for Bodysnatchers & Wordclock

Web: https://www.redmoonroleplaying.com
iTunes: http://apple.co/2wTNqHx
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  Shrouded in mystery.

Shrouded in mystery.

Curse of Strahd 01: Beregost 1391 DR

The storm is raging tonight over the town of Beregost. Wind and rain pelt the town with a fury odd for this time of year. A thick mist has also descended upon the town causing many tonight to be staying firmly indoors.

The hour is late, yet there still seems to be some activity occurring at the old “Burning Wizard” inn. It is here that Dawnbringer Roman will meet the half-orc Roshik. It is here our story will begin.

Follow us… into the mist...

Campaign: “Curse of Strahd”, Dungeons & Dragons
Music by: Metatron Omega, Flowers for Bodysnatchers & Wordclock

Web: https://www.redmoonroleplaying.com
iTunes: http://apple.co/2wTNqHx
Android: http://bit.ly/2vSvwZi
Youtube: http://bit.ly/2wL2rLv
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  Our story begins...

Our story begins...