Analysis: Molly’s Backstory Part 4: The Ritual, Critical Role C2 Ep014

This post is part 4 in a 7-part series examining everything
we learned about Molly’s backstory in Critical Role Campaign 2 Episode 014.
They are meant to be read together in sequence, but 9 pages seemed a little
long for Tumblr, so I’ve broken them up into separate posts. You can also find
links to this series, as well as further reading, on my Molly

The Ritual

According to Cree, “it all went belly up two years ago.” (CR C2 Ep014 0:18:59) She tells “Lucien,”

“You had acquired the tome with the ritual spell that you required to attempt to reach the city. And that lady, […] the spellslinger from the capital- [Rexxentrum] she came and oversaw and performed the ritual for you. […] She said it would be hard for us to tell whether or not it worked at first, but we went and checked, and you were not breathing. For a good hour you are not breathing, and you were gone cold. So, we knew then that we had lost you.”

They waited until sunrise, but Lucian still had no heartbeat. “So, not far from the Tomb Taker Hideout, we buried you, and we went our separate ways. She took the tome, the mage woman. That was part of the arrangement you had with her.” (CR C2 Ep014 1:04:59)

It’s unclear what sort of city would require that sort of ritual to enter, but one clue could be Molly’s Blood Hunter Order: Order of the Ghostslayer. (CR C2 Ep005 1:26:30)

“The Order of the Ghostslayer is the oldest and most driven of the orders, having rediscovered the secrets of blood magic and refined them for combat against the scourge of undeath. Ghostslayers seek out and study the moment of death, obsessing over the mysteries of the transition. Some will sit with the terminally diseased to closely witness their passing, while others go so far as to deliberately have a near-death experience, allowing them to tune their body and senses to the ethereal realms beyond.” (Blood Hunter class details)

Lucien had told them “to scatter and vanish if […] things went wrong wait until [he] returned,” (CR C2 Ep014 0:18:59, 1:05:43) implying they knew the ritual was risky. The length of time they waited before burying Lucian also implies that they expected it to involve a near-death experience. It seems possible that entering the city required someone to be attuned to another plane, although this raises a lot of questions about what manner of city it is.

It’s also possible the ritual was to turn Lucian into a Blood Hunter in the first place. Becoming a Blood Hunter means surviving “imbibing of the Hunter’s Bane, a poisonous alchemical concoction that alters your life’s blood, forever binding you to the darkness and honing your senses against it.”
(Blood Hunter class details)

The Claret Order he originally belonged to may have just been Blood Domain Clerics. The Blood Hunter ritual could have been in the tome, and the tome could have either been one Lucian recovered from outside or stole from the Order’s archives. A mage may have been required to make the alchemical concoction. The city may be surrounded by or guarded by undead and a Blood Hunter’s powers were required to even risk an attempt to enter it. Shady Creek Run is the Quanna Breach (sp?), northeast of Nogvurot (CR C2 Ep019 0:35:51). Its proximity to the Graying Wildlands could be another clue. They are “a lawless realm harboring a curse that has kept it unconquered by human hands.” (CR C2 Ep001 0:17:28) We don’t have enough information to draw any conclusions yet, but these are all things to keep in mind as we learn more.

1: Separating Molly and Lucian

2: Cree

3: The Tomb Takers

4: The Ritual

5: Molly Awakens

6: Disciple of The Moonweaver

7: Weird Blood Powers

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Mercer, M. (2018). Blood Hunter Class Details.
Retrieved from D&D Beyond.

Mercer, M., & Haeck, J. (2017). Tal’Dorei
Campaign Setting. Seattle: Green Ronin Publishing.

Critical Role C2 Ep014 0:13:00 Molly’s Backstory

Talks Machina 2018-04-17 Alpha 0:35:07 Molly’s notion of identity

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