As requested per His Imperial Majesty Emperor Aurmont Anodheles, Blessed be his name forever, I have endeavored to include as full an account as possible on the one known as Lord Whick, who has recently come to our attention as a rogue agent acting within the bounds of Wehnimer's Landing. Having been assigned the case, I must sadly inform the investigative body and His Majesty that I have met with all manner of obstruction and baffling amounts of misinformation coming from the ranks of the Hall's bureaucratic arm, and the state of the record system is in dire need of an overhaul so that future investigations and reports may be carried out with far more ease than what I was able to achieve.
The information provided herein is accurate to the best of my knowledge, and I swear to its truthfulness but cannot reliably vouch for its completeness. This august body will note many glaring holes and what appear to be outright contradictions of the eyewitness accounts we have received. It is beyond the scope of this investigation to ascertain why this is so, though I can only reiterate what I have brought forth to His Majesties attention again and again: That there is an organization working within our glorious Empire that is at odds with the laws and practices of your Highness and his duly appointed servants.
I beg you, reconsider my pleas and open an official Inquisition into the Hall, root out these traitors and poisonous influences before it is too late. I can only hope that the details of my report, such as they are, will remind you the dire ramifications in allowing such extra-lawful organizations to act in Your Name.
Whick, Early Years
The information we have on 'Lord' Whick is woefully incomplete, but perhaps nowhere moreso than in his early years. We do know, and it is fact, that he was adopted by the Hall of Mages early on when he evidenced a skill in elemental magic, though where he was adopted FROM is a matter of some dispute. Several sources from the Hall itself claimed to have information that Whick was requisitioned from a minor noble family in the Barony of Bourth, though none of these were able to provide records or documents of any kind. I did speak with one Agent who claimed Whick was taken in one of the prison purges when he was found to possess magical talent, though he too was unable to corroborate or provide any kind of evidence that this was so. The accounts given by those working as Witch Hunters differed so wildly from those under the tutelage of the Academy Proper as to lead me to believe that one of these organizations was instructed to lie to me. This of course, is but speculation on my part but it must be said in the interest of being thorough.
Regardless of how he came to be adopted into the ranks of the Hall Elite, the facts that ARE well documented are his aptitude scores and demonstration of abilities during training. His skill at both The Art and hand to hand combat were unmatched, and he broke several records during his time here. There is also well documented evidence of a history of disciplinary actions involving physical altercations with other students, including one case where he had broken the neck of one of his sparring partners, paralyzing her. She later died in the care of the Halls healers under suspicious circumstances. This was noted on his record and charges were filed to expel him, though why such motions were never followed up on is just one more mystery in this whole investigation. From that instant, it seems our Whick turned over a new leaf and no further incidents are reported, and no further disciplinary actions are noted on his file.
As this report most strenuously notes, there is no record of Whick being assigned in any official operational capacity to the Landing, and no direct accounts are available where he claimed to be doing so. However, we have been able to obtain several of the records from the most recent legal proceedings in the landing, and the resources he had at his disposal were official and very real. During my audit, however, such resources seemed to all have been 'misplaced' or 'misfiled' and no record of Whick being trained in such capacity as he demonstrated during the reported events was contained within the Hall. Almost as if that part of his life were erased.
Such a void in the records would be cause for concern in and of itself, but the fact that several such 'misfilings' have taken place within the last few months points again to a dangerous and volatile situation taking place within the Hall and in several other organizations throughout the Empire. I have also spoken discreetly to some of my colleagues in the Nations, and they have whispered to me of similar occurences and concerns. This is alarming, and I would be negligent in my duty if I did not stress in the most serious of terms that action must be taken immediately to root out whatever sinister forces are at work before it is too late.
The resources, as His Majesty well knows, were used first for what may be considered 'Imperial Interests', so that too may explain why our auditors and agents failed to act when they noticed such a breech. Often, it is the nature of the Hall and its Agents to work in cells where information is only given in a need to know basis, so there was precedent. He and several adventurers he had ingratiated himself with exposed a criminal element operating within the frontier town. This organization, the Consortium, seemed to have several parts and had infiltrated the entire area. This had adverse effects on our trade with the Landing, so the ruling was made to allow Whick to continue to operate. Through guile and persistence, he and these others were able to drive out the Consortium, though it is postulated elements still remain in other towns within the frontier. With the information he gathered, however, we are now better able to spot their influence and take steps to weed them out.
However, this would also mark a turning point in my investigation. Up until this point, a reasonable man could see how Whick was working for the Empire and its interests, and if he perhaps was doing so on his own or under some covert arm of the Hall then his competency could forgive him of any bureaucratic sins. But then came the Thrak inn 'incident'.
The Kidnapping of Leiana
Over the course of several months, by all accounts Whick laid low and carried on the life of a private citizen within the walls of the Frontier. He was given commendation by the local government there, however he had raised the suspicions of one Izaar, the Headsman acting directly under the local Mayor. During this time, there was a rash of disappearances of young women in which Whick was implicated. He also seemed to have some personal vendetta with the daughter of a local innkeeper, one Leiana of the Raging Thrak Inn. This started with verbal sparring though quickly escalated into physical threats and altercations, culminating in Leiana's disappearance.
During the next several days, search parties were sent out to find this girl, and there it was that Whick was caught 'red handed' so to speak, having tied up and kept this girl in his safehouse. At the same time, Izaar was murdered whilst the adventurers were searching for the girl, a fact that many believe was the reason for her kidnapping in the first place: To get the adventurers out of the way so Izaar could be killed without interference. Here the report becomes unclear: It is certain that Whick had been utilizing a Mage Hall safehouse in the region, though there are conflicting reports about certain alterations to the structure which are of a disturbing nature. Catechisms and forbidden runes were reportedly found within. Luckily, none of those we spoke to knew the true nature of these runes, and thus any Imperial Security threat was deemed minimal. Exposure risk is further minimized by the testimony of Whick himself at his trial.
He also appeared to have been reporting to someone directly within the Hall of Mages, though testimony at his trial claims he was communicating with a Faendryl by the name of Qoshkalia. Any honest review of the facts, and my personal investigation into the matter, reveals such for the fantasy that it is. Though the WHY people would lie for him is still a mystery. This Qoshkalia had not worked with us before, at least not in any official capacity I was able to ascertain. In addition, we believe Whick had obtained access to one of our Possessor Agents...though again, the how is a mystery as even the existence of such things are one of the Imperiums highest kept secrets.
As mentioned previously, Whick had been caught and charged not only with the Kidnapping of Leiana, but also the death of a local woman Ana and Headsman Izaar himself, one of the local leaders there. You will recall him from our diplomatic outreach efforts, namely in how he would stymie and turn away His Majesties desire for closer trade relations and military cooperation. His death has paved the way, curiously, for further development of Imperial interests in the region though we can all agree such brutal methods are beyond the scope of how we operate except in extreme conditions. With our forces stretched thin as is, one must conclude that such provocation as assassination would be an outrageously risky move and the Hall at all levels has VEHEMENTLY denied authorizing ANY such act. In this, if nothing else, the various sources in the Hall that I dealt with were all in agreement.
Regardless, Whick was charged and found guilty due to the testimony of many citizens, though it was one Idun's testimony that seemed to have been the most damning. We recommend looking further into the relationship of Idun and Whick, as perhaps more light can be shed on him and his actions through her. At the time of this report, however, we have been unable to interview her due to a variety of factors, not the least of which is her close relationship with the Warlord Auvreaian. We have included all known information on him, and will note that he has been featured in several highly sensitive reports in the Nations area.
Whick's punishment was to be hung by the neck until dead, followed by permanent exile if he were to be ressurected. The sentence was carried out without the subject, Whick, even struggling which by all accounts was very contrary to past behavior. He was brought back from death by one Shepherd Bareth, an Aelotoi priest we have little actionable information on.
Current Status and Whereabouts
Currently, rumors abound he has been operating out of Solhaven. As of this writing, I am personally overseeing a troop being sent to apprehend and question this 'Lord Whick' and perhaps we can solve the mysteries uncovered in my work within the Hall. By all accounts, he has been continuing to act as an Agent...but again, no official authorization has been given.
In conclusion, I can only say that this investigation has rekindled in me my certainty that something foul is afoot within the Empire. I once again officially call for an Inquisition into the discrepancies in both information and proper practices in the various organizations I dealt with. We must meet any who seek to stymie the will of His Majesty with the full might of our investigative powers. I pray to all the Gods that you act, your Majesty, before it is too late. I fear what is to come. I fear for the soul of our Empire.
-Signed by Malcolm Raymond, Official Inquisitor of the 3rd Rank, Subject of his Holy Emperor this 11th day of the month of Imaerasta in the year 5118
(scribbled in a different hand on the backside of the report: Intercepted communication before delivery. Further action needed to conceal involvement. Inquisitor 'waylaid by bandits'. Measures taken to ensure inability to raise. In Law, Life. In Obedience, Meaning. In Light...and in Shadow.)