Zrie Prakis was a lich and the former lover of Cassana who was instrumental in the creation of the living construct Alias circa 1357 DR.[2]

I am Cassana's tool, her pet, much like you are, or will be, Phalse's pet, if he gets his way. The wand that controls the Little One also controls me. The farther I am from the wand, the more dead I become. Cassana keeps the wand on her person at all times, and when she travels too far away, I die entirely, only to come back as a shambling form when she returns. She is literally the sun my world revolves around.
— Zrie Prakis[3]

Description[edit | edit source]

Zrie appeared as most liches did. He had taut age-worn translucent skin stretched over his bones. His hollow black eye sockets each contained a pinpoint of evil red light.[2]

Personality[edit | edit source]

Like his former lover, Zrie was vain, vengeful, and hateful.[2]

When forced into direct confrontation, Zrie Prakis used his chill touch ability that could paralyze his opponents (even though he was not good at close combat) or relied on powerful spells stored within his staff of power. Only once the magic of the staff was expended, he resorted to using the memorized spells.[2]

Abilities[edit | edit source]

As undead, he possessed all the abilities of a lich. As a powerful and ancient wizard, Zrie Prakis possessed extensive knowledge of the arcane and mundane. He was well-versed in astrology, gem-cutting, herbalism, and heraldry. As a living being, he was a good cook and brewer. Like other wizards, he knew how to handle daggers, darts, and staves.[2]

Zrie's wizard spell repertoire was quite expansive. He collected many spellbooks over his natural and unnatural life. He often had over thirty spells memorized and ready. Spells such as dimension door, enervation, extension I, polymorph other, conjure elemental, death spell, glassee, finger of death, gate, among many others.[2]

Notably, Zrie Prakis was able to summon powerful mineral quasi-elementals that served his bidding.[4]

Possessions[edit | edit source]

Under Cassana's control, Zrie did not own many things, she made sure to have his mind and arcane abilities aimed exclusively on her own agenda. Among very few things the lich owned were numerous mundane and exotic spell components, spell books, symbol-making chalks, and other wizardly tools.[2]

The most powerful item in his possession was his darkwood[1] staff of power.[2]

Relationships[edit | edit source]

Once, Zrie Prakis and Cassana were lovers, even though it was not known whether they truly loved each other or if it was a hateful passion. After his death, likely by Cassana's hand, she returned him to life as a slave, something that ignited overwhelming hate in his undead heart. He wished her nothing but painful death but was unable to strike his mistress down.[2][3]

As a part of Cassana's alliance that birthed Alias, Zrie was allied with the Fire Knives assassins, the god of decay Moander, and by extension his minions and cultists, and a powerful hordling Phalse who hailed from Carceri. While they were in the process of creating the perfect construct, he was briefly allied with Finder Wyvernspur.[2]

Zrie's true intentions for Alias remained uncovered, but it was known he did not feel much hate for or supremacy over the alliance's creation. His name for Alias was "the Little One", the name somewhat warm, if such a thing was even plausible for the cruel lich, possibly indicating his desire of the woman that was created to look like a younger version of Cassana.[2][3]

History[edit | edit source]

Zrie Prakis from Villains' Lorebook.

Zrie Prakis lived several centuries before the 14th century DR. Very few things were known of his mortal life, but stories and legends of his romance with a fellow wizard. He fell in love with Cassana but parted ways with her early in their careers. When they were reunited, they developed a hateful rivalry to see who had become stronger in the time they had been apart. This rivalry ended with his death at Cassana's hands. Cassana kept his remains at her side until she transformed him into a lich, and developed a magical wand to keep him in check and as her slave. All the while, he quietly plotted Cassana's destruction but was unable to act upon those plans.[2]

When Alias, the construct the alliance created, escaped with the help of her "father" Finder Wyvernspur, in 1357 DR, Zrie with his allies were tirelessly trying to track their creation. Eventually, the alliance caught up with Alias and her companions after Mooander's destruction over Westgate. Olive Ruskettle, a halfling "bard", and one of Alias' companions, was recruited by a demon Phalse to join the evildoers. This was when the lich saw an opportunity. He recruited the halfling, leaving her little choice, to assassinate Cassana and retrieve her wand. He allowed Olive to freely move around Cassana's mansion to achieve that goal.[5]

That freedom allowed Olive to find caged Finder Wyvernspur, and one of her companions. Together they concocted a desperate plan to stop the final step of the construct's creation that was to enslave Alias to her masters once and for all.[6]

Zrie was destroyed during the final confrontation with Alias and her companions when the wand that Cassana used to bind him was flung into a gate into another dimension. The wand left the prime material plane, severing the link to the dark energies that sustained him. In his final moments, he screamed "Die, Cassana!", before crumbling into dust.[7]

Rumors & Legends[edit | edit source]

  • The story of Cassana the Cruel and her lover Zrie Prakis was quite well known in Cormyr, the Dales, and Sembia. In Raven's Bluff, their story was turned into a popular opera, Cassana's Lament.[8] There were multiple versions of the evil wizards' love story. One claimed the young Cassana and Zrie were sent to the opposite ends of the Inner Sea by their masters, another version sent one of the wizards into the Etherial plane. And lastly, the opera told the story of Cassana being kidnapped by pirates. The wizards stayed apart and grew narcissistic, vein, and powerful. Eventually, when they met again, all they did was arguing over who's more powerful. They dueled, Zrie lost, and was killed. In the stories, Cassana felt remorseful over her first love's death and encased his bones in a glass sarcophagus to keep by her bed until the rest of her life.[9]
  • There were rumors that the ancient lich was brought back to unlife when the pieces of Cassana's wand found their way back to Westage, on the prime material plane. With his ex-lover mistress gone, Zrie's intentions, if he indeed was back, were unknown.[2]
  • Even though Zrie's existence was tied to Cassana's wand, there were rumors that his phylactery still existed, and was either a totem doll or an enchanted gemstone, likely aiding his return back to the realms.[2]

Appendix[edit | edit source]

Appearances[edit | edit source]

Adventures
Referenced only
Curse of the Azure Bonds
Novels
Azure Bonds
Referenced only
Finder's Bane

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Jeff Grubb, Kate Novak (October 1988). Azure Bonds. (TSR, Inc.), chap. 27, p. 322. ISBN 0-88038-612-6.
  2. 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 2.15 Dale Donovan (July 1998). Villains' Lorebook. (TSR, Inc), pp. 58–59. ISBN 0-7869-1236-7.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Jeff Grubb, Kate Novak (October 1988). Azure Bonds. (TSR, Inc.), chap. 27, p. 321. ISBN 0-88038-612-6.
  4. Jeff Grubb, Kate Novak (October 1988). Azure Bonds. (TSR, Inc.), pp. 73–76. ISBN 0-88038-612-6.
  5. Jeff Grubb, Kate Novak (October 1988). Azure Bonds. (TSR, Inc.), chap. 27, p. 309–324. ISBN 0-88038-612-6.
  6. Jeff Grubb, Kate Novak (October 1988). Azure Bonds. (TSR, Inc.), chap. 28, p. 325–341. ISBN 0-88038-612-6.
  7. Jeff Grubb, Kate Novak (October 1988). Azure Bonds. (TSR, Inc.), p. 531. ISBN 0-88038-612-6.
  8. Jeff Grubb and Kate Novak (August 1997). Finder's Bane. (Wizards of the Coast), p. ?. ISBN 0-7869-0658-8.
  9. Jeff Grubb, Kate Novak (October 1988). Azure Bonds. (TSR, Inc.), chap. 14, p. 171. ISBN 0-88038-612-6.
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