|Dieter von Waldheim|
Baron Dieter von Waldheim is an elderly black mage and the present head of the House of Waldheim as well as the Baron of Fragnar from which his family hails. Since the Second Great War broke out, he's been travelling with the Grand Alliance, hoping to find knowledge of a cure to the dreaded Blood Fever after it took his wife Luthien Bitterleaf and daughter Freyja von Waldheim from him.
Life in FragnarEdit
Dieter von Waldheim was born to the House of Waldheim which had lived around Fragnar in Remon for centuries. The family lived happily for a time, and Dieter even had a sister, Eva. All seemed peaceful even though the anti-elven movement was spreading in Fragnar and the neighbouring countryside.
However, one day the parents of Dieter and Eva fell ill and died a week later. The only good thing to happen in those sad days was that Dieter's ill grandfather, Adolf von Waldheim, seemed to miraculously regain his strength and vitality even though he had been at death's door only a week earlier. Adolf took Dieter and Eva under his wing and began teaching them black magic.
Adolf often took young Dieter with him, and they travelled around Remon, especially to Folsworth Woods, for many years while Eva took care of the Waldheim household. Dieter's grandfather was not fond of elves and often said that the elves' dark kin had only caused misery to Remon and that the Condeferacy of Remon could only be united once all the dissident elves had been wiped out.
Dieter, however, met his future wife, Luthien Bitterleaf, during these journeys and thus saw elves in a different light than Adolf. When Adolf found out that Dieter had decided to marry Luthien, he got furious and threatened to take off all of Dieter's possessions and make sure that Dieter would never become a skilled black mage.
Dieter was angered at this and ended up unleashing his innate black magic, disintegrating Adolf in a heartbeat. Dieter kept the circumstances of Adolf's death a secret from everyone and married Luthien as if nothing had happened. Luthien eventually gave birth to a healthy half-elven girl whom Dieter named Freyja von Waldheim. The pair decided it was better for Freyja to stay with the elves because Fragnar still had an anti-elven movement which wouldn't have looked kindly on her.
Tragedies in the FamilyEdit
Eventually Eva got married to a count named Antigonus de Ardyn. Dieter was happy although he grew suspicious of Antigonus. Things turned worse when Eva died giving birth to her child, Desdemona de Ardyn. Dieter appeared on the scene and blamed Antigonus for indirectly murdering Eva. This caused bad blood between Dieter, Antigonus and Antigonus's brother, Belial de Ardyn. Dieter retreated back to Remon, bitter that he had lost his dear sister.
Tragedy would follow Dieter, however. His wife Luthien got infected by the Blood Fever and died a few years later. Her dying wish was that Dieter would take care of their daughter and then go to Etruria and try to do what he could to ease the pains of Luthien's relatives. Dieter reluctantly agreed; he had never been on good terms with Luthien's family but he did what she had asked him to do out of respect.
Rose of the DesertEdit
Shortly after Antigonus's passing in the aftermath of the events of Darkness Within, Dieter travelled abroad to Libaterra and ended up in the Tronin Desert during the events of the Rose of the Desert. He met with Belial again, and they experienced a falling out and went their separate ways after some adventures in the desert, jaded by their experiences. Belial's growing attraction to the young and fierce Sarquil warrior Razia al-Saif didn't go unnoticed, and Dieter would remember Belial's dalliance with her.
Dieter returned to Remon after the Libaterran Civil War began and witnessed the weakness of the Provisional Government of Remonton which couldn't prevent an anti-elven movement to grow around Fragnar with the backing of the Clergy of Mardük. Despite having become the Baron of Fragnar, Dieter could do little to protect the elven population in the north from fanatics and racists.
Looking for a CureEdit
- "The Blood Fever is one of the reasons why I was in Folsworth Woods when we met. The disease took my elven wife from me, and her dying wish was that I'd take care of our daughter and then go to Etruria and try to do what I could to ease her family's pains. I couldn't do anything to help my wife's relatives, though, and they died as easily as an autumn leaf falls off a tree. My daughter, after struggling for nearly twenty years, finally died in her bed. I assume the Blood Fever didn't affect her immediately because she was only a half-elf, and apparently the human part kept her alive until the Blood Fever finally claimed her."
- —Dieter to Rhylian Loras
While Freyja, his daughter, fell ill to the Blood Fever despite her being a half-elf, Dieter tried to devise a cure. He spent many years studying and gained nothing in return. Things turned more sinister when Remon was invaded by the Yamato Empire.
Three years later the Grand Alliance was formed and eventually liberated Remon under the leadership of Remon's first king in ages, Marcus Sarillius. Dieter, however, did not participate in the Great War; instead, he focused on finding a cure, but it got more and more difficult as time moved on.
Once he could do nothing else for his withering daughter, Dieter returned to Etruria to fulfill his oath to his deceased wife. He happened upon ancient elven texts while visiting the relatives, and it was the first proper clue he had seen in ages. According to the texts there was only one place in the world that might have detailed knowledge about anything one could possibly imagine: the Magestar. Dieter decided to make preparations for the eventual journey to Aison and the Magestar. He left Etruria and wandered around Remon although he promised to return to Etruria eventually.
However, the Magestar's policy of letting outsiders in was quite strict, and Dieter was unsure if the academy even existed anymore after the Cataclysm had shaken the world. During his stay in Fragnar he heard rumours that an engineer named Daventhalas de Mont Hault was in Ravensworth and that the engineer might have some texts that Dieter could use to gain access to the Magestar.
Dieter decided to travel to Etruria one last time to see if he could do anything to help his wife's remaining relatives. After that he would travel to Ravensworth and seek Daven out.
In 1016 AE, Waldheim had spent a few months at Etruria and left the elven city to travel to Ravensworth. However, his sense of direction was fuzzy and he got lost. In his stubborness he had not accepted any elven guide, and he came to regret that decision when he found himself surrounded by angry and hungry wolves that had been stalking him, drawn to his magic.
However, fate smiled upon Waldheim that day as he was saved in the nick of time by an elven ranger named Rhylian Loras. She asked him to accompany her to Ravensworth, and Waldheim gladly accepted the offer. He recharged himself with the life essence of the slain wolves and then followed Rhylian's lead.
The journey to Ravensworth was eventless, but they stopped when Rhylian heard cannonfire in the distance. They began proceeding more carefully, wondering what might have caused such a commotion. Waldheim and Rhylian decided to enter Ravensworth without being seen, and Waldheim cast a spell which teleported them into the city. With their goal accomplished, Rhylian asked Waldheim to accompany her for a meal. It seemed she was uncomfortable staying in big crowds, so the perceptive Waldheim graciously accepted her offer.
Things turned more interesting when it turned out that Rhylian was looking for a cure to the Blood Fever. She asked if Waldheim knew anything about it, and Waldheim began telling her his life story, the tragedies in his family and his personal hardships with the Blood Fever research. He explained that he was looking for Daven and asked if Rhylian could accompany him for the time being because the two of them shared a similar goal. He also wanted to stay closed to Rhylian because she was a good archer, and the martial law in Ravensworth and the recent pirate attack had made the city a more dangerous place to walk alone.
Rhylian agreed to accompany Waldheim for the time being. Suddenly their conversation was interrupted by two dueling mages, Gloriana and Deshwitat Rudbich. Gloriana turned to Waldheim and her facial expression seemed to indicate that she recognized him from somewhere, but before she could react, Desh knocked her out. Rhylian and Waldheim retreated hastily while the Ravensworth Watch captured Desh.
Waldheim and Rhylian eventually found Daven's shop and entered. They were greeted by the enthusiastic Nalaen Silverpond who acted as Daven's apprentice. Waldheim purchased an ancient tome that he had been looking for, but Daven suddenly asked him of a favour: to take a girl named Kaisa Blackwell with him and search for Kaisa's caretaker, Axikasha Keiran.
A Grumpy NannyEdit
- "Outrageous! I, Baron Dieter von Waldheim, a nanny in this ripe old age! The other barons will laugh hard if they ever find out!"
- —Waldheim to Rhylian Loras about becoming the caretaker of Kaisa Blackwell
Waldheim grudgingly accepted the deal to become Kaisa's caretaker because he did not want to upset Daven. However, he did not appreciate Kaisa's presence because he saw her both as a hindrance and a painful reminder of what his sister Eva had been like in their childhood.
He explained to Rhylian that the tome he had acquired from Daven was a part of a larger work written by an elven scholar named Korellon Korath. The scholar in the tome talked about the Blood Fever, but his notes were written in such a way that Waldheim could not decipher them without reading all of Korellon's tomes. Daven had also told Waldheim that the library in Remonton might still have some handwritten copies of Korellon's works, so Waldheim decided to travel there. Kaisa tagged along because she thought that Ax might be there, and Rhylian followed along as well in hopes of finding more information about the Blood Fever.
The early stages of their journey to Remonton were eventless but they were suddenly ambushed by a group of pirates who turned out to be the Wanderers. They soon found out that the leader of the Wanderers was none other than Axikasha Keiran who promptly gave Kaisa a spanking for her disobedience. Another familiar face, this time to Waldheim, was a red-robed mage who turned out to be Belial de Ardyn, Waldheim's brother-in-law. The two men were not happy to meet after all these years but grudgingly tolerated each other.
Waldheim and Rhylian were released once Kaisa and Belial explained that the two travellers would not be dangerous. The two groups decided to travel to Remonton together because there was safety in numbers...especially after they had learned that the Proninist Party had violently taken over Remonton from the inside only a few days ago.
Battle for RemontonEdit
- "It's about time that old coot showed up!"
- —Waldheim about Belial de Ardyn
Waldheim accompanied the Wanderers to Remonton. Many things began unfolding once the group got into the city through secret tunnels. The Proninist Party noticed that the group went to see a paladin named Marcus Sarillius who claimed to be the long-lost King of Remon. They also noticed that one of the Wanderers, Killian Greenbough, had been infected with the Blood Fever.
Before the Proninists could attack the heroes, a group of Totenkopfs led by Jacob Seneron appeared and released an ice elemental into the city. The Second Battle of Remonton had begun. In the ensuing chaos the Totenkopfs kidnapped Mordecai de Ardyn, one of Belial's companions.
The groups did their best to fend off the angry elemental which destroyed the majority of the city in its wake. Eventually some of the Wanderers managed to free Belial and various other people whom the Proninists had captured, and the groups managed to distract the elemental long enough for Ax and Marcus to defeat it with their enchanted blades Dawn and Dusk.
A group of Maar Sulais knights led by Sen Wisteria appeared a moment later, and helped to capture the remaining Proninists. However, Jacob and the Totenkopfs managed to flee with Mordecai. Although the battle had been won, it would take over a year to rebuild Remonton.
Setting the StageEdit
- "If the Blood Fever is already fatal to elves, what if someone tried to modify it to infect other races? The disease itself already exists, so with years of hard work and manipulation with magic they might be able to create a variant that is deadly and infects everyone!"
- —Waldheim about Totenkopfs' plans
Waldheim spent the following year in what was left of the city's libraries, hoping to find any references to a possible cure to the Blood Fever. He and Rhylian eventually discovered that the disease had spread to humans too although those had been isolated cases.
Sen Wisteria and the Maar Sulais knights had also brought news from the world outside of Remon, and Waldheim and Rhylian learned that there were laboratories and skilled mages in Alent and that the mages there might have a cure. Yet another source of information was the captured Totenkopf named Izael Korath who had revealed some secrets of the Totenkopfs and their connection to the spreading of the Blood Fever.
The meeting with the delegates of various races went well, and Marcus managed to keep his title as king and also formed the new Grand Alliance. Marcus was kidnapped the following night, however, and Waldheim did not participate in the battle against the Shadow as he had been unaware of it taking place.
Waldheim did hear about Marcus's kidnapping not long after the Shadow had been defeated, though, and decided to accompany the rescuers to the Ruined Kingdom where Marcus had been taken to. He was well versed in the lore regarding the Ruined Kingdom, but Ax was nevertheless suspicious that Waldheim and so many other people just happened to appear at the right time and that they wanted to accompany her to a dangerous place. She let everyone come with her, though.
Marcus's advisor Shyralis used her magic to turn the Alliance member Ronove into a fake Marcus in order to fool the rest of the Alliance into believing that Marcus was safe. If anyone learned about Marcus's kidnapping, the Alliance would fall apart immediately, and no one wanted that to happen. While the fake Marcus would lead the Alliance's army to aid Maar Sul, the rest of the heroes would search for the real Marcus in the Ruined Kingdom.
Saving the KingEdit
Once the party reached the Ruined Kingdom, they split into two groups: one was led by Ax into a temple that stood in the city while Waldheim's group remained behind to observe the surroundings for the time being.
Things began unravelling as soon as Ax's group had entered the central temple: a mysterious elfess appeared and was revealed as Tiyana Natiya after Waldheim's interrogation. A group of Totenkopfs appeared and followed Ax's group into the temple. Waldheim led his group and Tiyana into the temple, hoping to reach Ax in time before the Totenkopfs would catch up with her.
The group's fears turned out to be nothing compared to what was waiting for them after they had proceeded deeper into the temple. They saw Ax's group not only fighting against the Totenkopfs but also against Marcus's kidnappers who turned out to be members of the Grey Cult.
The arrival of Waldheim's group evened things out for a while, but things turned worse when Jacob Seneron, the man who had released the ice elemental into Remonton a year ago, appeared. As if that wasn't enough, Jacob was possessed by Nergal, the God of War, who revealed that he had manipulated everyone for some sinister purpose. He also said that the group had traitors in their midst but before he could reveal more, rash actions from Belial and Ax made the battle continue.
The possessed Jacob turned out to be a powerful opponent, and the threat of the Totenkopfs only made things worse. However, when Ax was seemingly slain, she was resurrected by the god Hephaestus who took control of her body and engaged Nergal with the help of a dark elf named Mori'sul Agara who was likewise possessed by the god Shakkan. The possessed heroes eventually managed to beat Jacob who used his last moments to mock the heroes about the trials they would face and how the traitors would be the doom of them all.
As the temple around the group began to collapse, Mori'sul used the last bits of his strength to open a portal so that the heroes could go through. The heroes took the surviving kidnappers with them as prisoners but left the Totenkopfs behind to die.
Waldheim was not happy how things had turned out although he was surprised to hear that one of their new captives was none other than Xerathas d'Zarnagon, the High Prophet of the Grey Cult. He was also amazed to see Hephaestus appear in the flesh and make Ax and Marcus members of the Clergy of Hephaestus.
The party left the Ruined Kingdom behind and set up a camp as night fell. Waldheim was not surprised to hear of Belial's confession of having used people for his own ends; he had always seen Belial as a scheming and dangerous man. However, he also saw something else that was interesting as he observed the interaction between various people. He went to sleep, satisfied that he now knew more about Belial and the others.
Ax's task force joined the main army of the Grand Alliance and replaced the fake Marcus with the real one before anyone noticed what was going on. Once they reached Maar Sul City, many Alliance officers and heroes attended a ball that King Gerard Aurelac of Maar Sul had organized to celebrate the alliance between Remon and Maar Sul. Waldheim did not go to the ball because he said he was feeling ill after the adventure he had had with the others in the damp Ruined Kingdom.
Waldheim appeared in the inn the next morning and heard that Belial had been murdered. He appeared in Belial's funeral which was held in the evening, and although he was somewhat relieved to see his rival gone, he also felt sad that now he had no one to bicker with. He was surprised when it was revealed that Khalid al-Saif, one of Belial's servants, was in fact an emir of Vanna and also Belial's son.
When Khalid asked Waldheim to accompany him to Vanna, Waldheim agreed. He had heard of the vast libraries of Vanna and hoped to find some ancient tomes that might have information about the Blood Fever. Khalid and Waldheim began bonding even though Khalid was not always comfortable around Waldheim because of his fear of mages. Waldheim sensed the same stubborness and spirit in Khalid that he had seen in Belial, and he thought that with his guidance Khalid might not end up being like Belial.
Return to LibaterraEdit
Waldheim travelled to Libaterra onboard the Hiltraud like most of his companions once the port city of Jardine had been taken over. He could hardly wait to get to Vanna and study all the books in the library which he had never had a chance to visit until now.
More info later.
- "Who knows what else the fever can do if the magic within it can be isolated? It could give us so much more than just a cure. Imagine it: turning the dreaded fever into an asset, a salvation, granting strength to the sickly, giving people a second chance of life. We can save our dear elven friends and loved ones from extinction, making them better and stronger as a result. This is what my dear departed wife would've wanted...a second chance for our daughter who was taken from us too soon by this accursed fever."
- —Waldheim to Rhylian Loras
Aliases and NicknamesEdit
- A derogatory nickname given to Waldheim by Belial de Ardyn.
Waldheim looks like a generic old man. He has white hair, and his face is rather worn out. His eyes are still full of life, though. He has a gnarled staff which he uses to cast spells. He likes to wear green robes; this likely stems from the time he spent with elves in their forest home.
Personality and TraitsEdit
- "Perhaps the rest of you are happy dancing and not caring about tomorrow, but tomorrow is important to me, and I want to ensure that the rest of you can keep on dancing in a blissfully ignorant state even then! I will stop at nothing until I've done everything in my power to ensure that Blood Fever will be dealt with...one way or another. I've come too far and spent far too many years on my journey to be pushed aside now."
- —Waldheim to Crowe Lley
Waldheim is a calm, polite and quiet man for the most part. He does get annoyed at times but he usually manages to calm himself down quickly. He is very intelligent and possesses a strategic mind. This can make him look grumpy and cold to some, but once people get to know him better, they often discover his dry sense of humour.
Powers and AbilitiesEdit
Waldheim is not good in close combat, but his spell arsenal is quite formidable. Although he specializes in black magic, he has studied many other spells and thus knows some spells from the branches of white magic and even such rare branches as shadow magic and shamanic magic. One of his special abilities is to drain lifeforce from fallen opponents, but few people have seen him cast that particular spell.
Adolf von WaldheimEdit
Dieter thought that his grandfather was a great man and always listened to him when he had the time. He travelled with Adolf often, and they visited many places in Remon. Although Adolf was always openly hostile to elves, Dieter was not like him and instead got along with elves well for the most part. Dieter eventually learned more about the Blood Fever from Adolf's notes among other things, and this inspired him to do more research on the subject of Blood Fever.
Antigonus de ArdynEdit
Dieter tolerated Antigonus although he often wondered if the man was a good enough husband for Eva. When Eva died in childbirth, Dieter grew more bitter and began blaming Antigonus for murdering her. This animosity grew between the Houses of Ardyn and Waldheim, and it even turned the friendship between Dieter and Belial into downright contempt ever since Dieter appeared at the funeral of Antigonus to mock Antigonus's bad luck.
Belial de ArdynEdit
Belial and Waldheim felt animosity towards one another. It stemmed mainly from the animosity between Antigonus and Waldheim about the death of Waldheim's sister, Eva, but Belial had other reasons to despise the old man. He never liked Waldheim's smartass attitude, and although he respected the man's wisdom, there was just something about him that troubled Belial. The two kept calling each other names, and although Belial considered it amusing at times, for the most part he couldn't stand being around Waldheim. The two eventually learned to tolerate each other as they had been forced to cooperate, but it certainly was not easy. It was both a great relief and a moment of reflection for Dieter von Waldheim when Belial died because he did not have anyone to argue with anymore.
Eva von WaldheimEdit
Dieter cared for his sister Eva and protected her ever since their parents died. He was somewhat jealous when Eva married Antigonus but it turned into downright despair and hatred when Eva died in childbirth. Dieter could never forgive Antigonus for getting Eva pregnant, which resulted in Eva's death. He visited Eva's grave often in the years since her death but he did not do it after the Great War when he became occupied with other things.
Dieter was furious when Daven asked him to take care of the young Kaisa. He was annoyed by her antics and tried to ignore her in any way he could although he did keep her safe out of respect for the information he had received from Daven. Kaisa took this as a sign of Dieter being a grumpy old man, which further irritated Dieter. However, the real reason behind Dieter's harsh attitude was that Kaisa reminded him of the young Eva in some way, and this brought back painful memories which he wanted to forget. After Rhylian, who had been taking care of Kaisa, turned out to be infected with the Blood Fever, Dieter offered to become Kaisa's guardian and mentor in matters related to magic.
Dieter has become interested in Belial's son Khalid, especially after he saw Khalid use magic. He believes that Khalid has a great destiny ahead of him and that Khalid is more willing to listen to Dieter's advice than Belial was.
Dieter and Rhylian met in Folsworth Woods when Rhylian saved him from hungry wolves. Although the two of them did not bond immediately, they eventually grew closer as their journeys took them all over Remon. Dieter was one of the first humans Rhylian had seen in a while and he was also a good source of information about the Blood Fever for Rhylian who was also seeking a cure. Dieter also learned valuable information from Rhylian. They spent a year in Remonton after its destruction and found many references to Blood Fever. However, when they joined the ranks of the Grand Alliance and travelled to Maar Sul, they grew more distant, and Dieter began witholding information from Rhylian and asked her more and more questions. This seemed to trouble Rhylian who nevertheless did not address the matter probably out of respect for Dieter or because she had found his change of behaviour unsettling. They still get along well, though, and Rhylian believes that she can help cure the Blood Fever with Waldheim's help.