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Karaaz the Flagrant

Karaaz the Flagrant tears the corner off the ichor packet and drips it onto her zomburger. “I don’t get how you’re supposed to advance in this system,” she says. “When the faculty has eternal unlife and tenure…”

“It’s rigged,” says Jensen the Wroth. “Dumb program to get into.”

“You’re in it.”

He jams fingerfries into his mouth and waggles his eyebrows. “I’m sleeping my way to the top.”

Karaaz makes a genuine face, picturing that, and Jensen laughs hard enough to inhale his food. He’s a cute choker. Necromancy is a dumb program, she thinks, pounding him, but there are perks.

Karaaz the Flagrant

They’re not called dead letter offices anymore, but Karaaz isn’t fooled by the Morcroft Mail Recovery Center banner tacked over the old sign. Necromancy works on lots of things.

“Arise!” she hisses through the little slot, and inside thousands of rectangles stand up on end. “Fly to me, my servants! Not that way! Slip under the door, you’re flat, wait not toward the sacred candle oh no not all of you, what are you MOTHS or something–”

“We knew they were bad at finding places,” Gretch points out.

“MY HAIR,” says Karaaz, trying to dampen out the fire with a sponge.

Karaaz the Flagrant

Eventually there are so many of the dead that Karaaz has to start animating some corpses to bury the others. They aren’t good at it. They dig with determination but little forethought, and once they hit six feet they just amble back and forth between the walls.

Karaaz surveys them with a parent’s weary resignation. The wards of her purgatorium need checking and she hasn’t seen a carrier crow in months. Is this how unlife works, an endless accretion of concerns until one day your phylactery falls off a shelf?

Bump, go the dead in their self-made prisons. Bump bump.

Karaaz the Flagrant

Lichcraft is fraught under optimal conditions, which is to say without thralls like Scarjob and Gretch.

“I told you to watch the alembic so it didn’t boil over!” wails Karaaz the Flagrant, rushing to beat out a small but spirited fire in her phylactery lab. Scarjob and Gretch cringe.

“We did!” says Scarjob, who didn’t (they were playing a game with Gretch’s eyeball).

“What’s an alembic?” says Gretch hesitantly.


Then she’s late to the Future Liches of Morcroft meeting and everybody snickers at her under their cloaks.