Thirteen Great Plagues
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The Thirteen Great Plagues are diseases that the Skaven of the Pestilens Clans have been searching since the Age of Myth, when they learned of their existence from the Great Horned Rat himself. They follow portents, visions and tales of monstrous diseases and have located seven of the sorcerous plagues.
Contained in the Liber Writhsome.
Simply speaking aloud the ingredients from this pox is enough to cause a hideous death. Victims are overcome by a terrible squirming that rapidly manifests in thickening, worm like shapes beneath their skin. Horror turns to agony as slick - scaled tentacles burst from the victims skin, while their body crumples in on itself, sucked through reality to feed some terrible presence that has latched onto their soul. The Undulant Scourge spreads to any unfortunate enough to feel it's tentacular caress. Where those stinging tentacles slither from is a mystery. Even plague priests believe it is better simply not to know.
Contained in the Liber Diabolus.
Once one has acquired the Bloodworms that squirm amid the gore around the throne of the mighty Khorne, this pox is easy to brew. Still, the Clans Pestilens do so but rarely and with great care. Crimsonweal Curse lives in the blood and is possessed of malicious sentience. It wants to be brewed, just as it wants to spread to all living things. Plague monks included. Those infected find blood welling from their eyes, ears, mouth and pores in ever greater volumes.
Soon a trickle becomes a gush, which becomes a jetting spray that infects all it touches. More than one Clan Pestilens burrow has been left a corpse-strewn mausoleum awash with cooling gore after incautious priests let the curse loose on their own ranks.
Contained in the Liber Ravenous.
With ingredients including the crystallised woes of the world and stagnant waters from the garden of Nurgle, this is a challenging brew to create. Spread through ingestion or bite, the Redmaw plague drives its victims into an insane cannibalistic rage.
They rip and tear with hands and teeth devouring friend and foe alike with frantic fervor. This is a hunger that can never be sated, however, the victim's gut churning with ever more potent acids which eat through the unfortunate's flesh, dissolving it into meat - slop within hours of infection.
Contained in the Liber Bubonicus.
A concoction of black warpstone, the bile of a sickened god and the fangs of the Ur-Behemoth, this pox can only be brewed with the Horned Rat's favour. It causes a monstrous swelling and blackening of it's victims flesh and organs, while daemonic plague-fleas burst from ravaged corpses to spread sickness to all living things.
Contained in the Liber Conundrus.
This is by far the strangest Great Plague discovered, for none yet understand it's purpose. The plague priests have brewed this concoction once every century, following the Liber Conundrus exactly. At the precise moment that the brewing is complete, a single, spectral peal rings out as though a mighty bell had tolled somewhere in the ether.
No further effects have ever been observed, but this only makes the inquisitive skaven more desperate than ever to discover the meaning of this eerie mystery.
Two more great plagues are known to the Clans Pestilens. The lore of Grey Shrivelling is found within the Liber Abominus while the Liber Consumptus contains the malign secrets of the Final Rotting. Six more appalling sorcerous maladies remain lost amongst the myriad landscapes of the mortal realms, and the servants of the Great Corrupter will never stop searching until the last secrets of the Libers Pestilent are clutched in their scabrous claws.
- 1: General's Handbook 2017 - Allegiance Abilities: Skaven Pestilens, pg. 130-131
- 2: Battletome: Skaven Pestilens (2016), pg. 14-15