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In the Curse of Strahd adventure book for D&D 5e, in chapter 8, section S.14 (page 151), there's a section that reads as follows:

[The Abbot] regrets transforming the Belviews into horrid mongrelfolk.

So my question is: why would

the Abbot

transform the Belviews into mongrelfolk? I didn't see anything in the book that would answer this and I thought it was an odd thing for the authors to have included without any additional information.

Am I missing something or is there really no extra info here?

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    \$\begingroup\$ Huh, mongrelfolk were a bit outcast in 3.5e’s Races of Destiny, but they weren’t “horrid.” Wonder if it’s supposed to be the same sort of creature or not... \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Nov 4, 2021 at 23:12
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    \$\begingroup\$ @KRyan There’s some character art of the mongrelfolk in the module, and some of them are quite…horrid. \$\endgroup\$ Nov 4, 2021 at 23:24

1 Answer 1

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This is explained in Appendix D, in the character’s background section.

In Appendix D, The Character has his own section. The answer to your question is in the “Imperfections” paragraph:

Imperfections. The Abbot’s fall from grace started when the Belviews—a family of sickly, inbred lepers—came to the abbey seeking salvation. The deva rid them of their diseases, an act for which they were eternally grateful, but could not cure them of certain human defects that had been present since birth. The Abbot became consumed with a prideful, obsessive desire to rid the poor Belviews of their lingering imperfections. The Belview family, however, had strange ideas of what it meant to be perfect. They didn’t want to be ordinary humans. They wanted the eyes of a cat, wings to fly like a bat, the strength of a mule, and the guile of a snake. In short, they craved bestial traits, and the Abbot, taking pity on them, yielded to their mad desires.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Additionally, this is yet another example of 5e D&D completely messing up references to older edition lore. In the original 2nd and 3rd edition iterations of Ravenloft, the Belviews would be a kind of monster called "Broken Ones", which was officially a catch-all for humans warped into monstrous forms by cruel magic or twisted science, but in practice was used for Island of Dr. Moreau-style "man-beasts". Mongrelfolk were entirely separate, representing a race resulting from so many generations of multi-species interbreeding. And even in the 90s were so problematic they were retconned. \$\endgroup\$ Jun 12 at 22:34

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