Further details on the Angel of Darkness universe from Murti Schofield, the writer of the game.
1954 – Kurtis’ grandfather Gerhardt Heissturm, is hunted down and killed by Eckhardt and the Cabal. [Gerhardt was present as a young man at the ‘accidental’ release of Eckhardt by Allied bombers in 1945.]
Kurtis’ father Konstantin, age 21, inherits his father’s Lux Veritatis role as Adept as well a number of talismanic items such as the Periapt Shards and various other arcane LV weapons & artefacts of immense potency. Only a properly trained Adept can make use of these items effectively.
From this point on Konstantin is a target for the Cabal’s murderous attacks trying to totally eradicate the Lux Veritatis, regain the Shards and capture the LV artefacts. There are only a few surviving Lux Veritatis Adepts and these wage a constant war with Eckhardt and the Cabal. The world at large knows nothing of this ‘Shadow War’ fought in the dark corners of history.
1966 – Konstantin, age 33, meets an American Navajo Indian, Marie Cornel. She is a specialist on Shamanism and the Way of the Warrior and is on a lecture tour of Europe. She gets caught in the crossfire of a Cabal assault against Konstantin but proves to have unexpected innate powers that enable the attack to be defeated. As the couple exchange details about their unusual family histories they come to realise that they have a surprising amount in common due to their atypical upbringings. After a whirlwind romance she returns to the States…for now.
NB. Marie Cornel’s father, Jefferson Cornel, was one of the U.S. Marine officers who worked as a Navajo Code Talker during WW II, which goes some way to explaining her roots and possibly her unusual ‘abilities’. From her earliest years she had shown a specialist interest in the mysterious Shadow Walkers, the Watchers or Grigori of the Chumash and Tongva Indians and had experiences which triggered a limited telekinesis and the ability to ‘farsee’.
1969 – On a Lux Veritatis mission against the Cabal’s forces Konstantin arrives in the US. He seeks out Marie Cornel. Whilst visiting the Anasazi ruins of Chaco Canyon in New Mexico they get attacked and have to wipe out a scavenger pack of Cabal agents. Shortly after that Konstantin and Marie get secretly married in a desert tribal ceremony. For the next few years they move back and forth between the States and Europe.
1972 – KURTIS IS BORN 26/06/72.
Konstantin (age 39x) takes Marie to a secure Lux Veritatis bolthole beneath the Utah Salt Flats and Kurtis is born. As soon as they can travel Kurtis and his mother go into hiding whilst Konstantin makes return trips to the European continent to pursue the ‘Shadow War’.
There are skirmishes in remote and centralised parts of the world between LV and the Cabal in which the dark Alchemist makes a great deal of use of his sinister Glove[see document: The Glove Wars]. Konstantin has long since mastered use of the arcane LV weapons he inherited, all of which Eckhardt wants in his control. No one except a trained LV can use them effectively but the Black Alchemist wants all such dangerous artefacts captured & buried to prevent their being used against him or his henchmen/agents. These weapons are:
the Irenscyld and
the Culcrys, all forged from sky-steel or meteorite iron.
1976 – Kurtis and his mother spend a year in Scotland in hiding whilst Konstantinfends off a particularly vicious campaign to wipe out the last elders of the Lux Veritatis. The battle centres on the underground cities of Anatolia in central Turkey where Eckhardt appears to be holed up. But it is an elaborate trap. Only six LV Adepts now survive, apart from Konstantin.
1988 – Kurtis, age 16x, continues his intense Lux Veritatis training and passes through all of the initiate stages under the remaining six Adepts. All that remains is for him to gain the extensive experience in the field needed to hone his innate & highly trained abilities. His father is absent for several years on covert missions for the Lux Veritatis.
1991 – At age 19 Kurtis rebels and runs away to join the Foreign Legion. He wants no part of the ‘Shadow War’. At this stage only three LV Adepts still survive, apart from his father – if Konstantin is indeed still alive!
For the next ten years occasional word reaches Kurtis that his father is still alive and active against the Cabal but he is unable to reconcile the differences between them. He never sees his father alive again. [He does however come across his father’s preserved remains in a grotesque waxwork exhibition in a later game. This travesty is in one of Luther Rouzic’s trophy displays in a Cabal protected vault.]
2001 – Konstantin (age 68x) is finally cornered and murdered by Cabal forces in Iceland.
Marie Cornel was in the States, under cover, when Konstantin received news that she was being stalked by a Cabal Extreme Action Squad at a site in Iceland. The message contained the word ‘Keppi’ in runes, a code name they used between them. Marie had previously carried out a dig at this location within an ancient chamber below the extinct Snaefellsjökull volcano. This subterranean site is an immense labyrinth of tunnels and caverns that penetrate deep into the Earth’s mantle concealing many domes of immense size, sealed away and complete with their own environments. Nothing in there has seen the light of day for millennia.
Konstantin knew that Marie Cornel had once spent months at this location searching for a Baetyl, a meteoric stone of unpredictable or magical qualities. As he had no reason to doubt that she was in great peril he departed as quickly as he could extract himself from his current anti-Cabal operation on the edge of the Baltic.
At the time Konstantin had been running his Baltic action on a Cabal outpostaccompanied by a potential Lux Veritatis apprentice for whom he had high hopes; an 18x year old called Annessa Chimoya*. When news concerning his wife’s imminent jeopardy reached him he departed in haste, leaving Annessa behind, and arrived at Vesturhorn in Iceland in record time. But he had neglected to carry out all his habitual checks; possibly age had something to do with it. He had been battling the forces of darkness hell bent on eradicating all Lux Veritatis for decades now and the unremitting strain of working alone was taking its toll. Possibly the great man was wearying. Possibly he felt weighed down with the suspicion that the Lux Veritatis was losing the long drawn out Shadow War. Whatever the full explanation, somehow, his most essential & potent weapon, the Chirugai, was missing! Had Annessa had anything to do with it?
[The Periapt Shards were in safe keeping at a secret location under powerful protection overseen by Marie. Quite where the Culcrys was at this stage was anyone’s guess.]
At Vesturhorn Konstantin was met by Captain Larks Ullsgarth and his brother Stellan Ullsgarth, both ex-forces. They had been of assistance to Marie Cornel on her previous forays into the labyrinth’s depths. He agreed that they might accompany him as guides.
Once within the labyrinth they were cornered by Cabal forces laying in wait and led by an adept Alchemist, Allacord Siglum. This shadowy character had been waiting to gain membership of Eckhardt’s inner Cabal circle by eliminating his competitors for the position. He had constructed this elaborately contrived ruse to wipe out the last of the Lux Veritatis in order to prove his suitability for inclusion in the ranks of the Cabal.
Unfortunately the Ullsgarth brothers were also part of Siglum’s convoluted conspiracy and Konstantin understood too late how he had been misled. It was then that he realised the Chirugai was absent from his side-pack, a sure sign of how distracted he was by concerns for his wife’s safety.
Still armed as he was with Irenfolm and Irenscyld he fought his way into the lower regions to where he thought Marie was holding the ferocious forces at bay. In the end the enormity of the plan laid against him became apparent and his LV weaponry proved unable to cope with Siglum’s assembled cohorts and the treachery of those who might have proved to be allies.
After a titanic mêlée in the subterranean tunnels Konstantin was finally taken down and his LV weapons fell into Cabal hands. But not the Chirugai, much to Siglum’s incandescent fury. No one knew where it was.
[See docs on how Annessa Chimoya took the Chirugai but immediately lost it in a murderous battle between the LV and the Cabal. The story of how the Chirugai finally got into Kurtis’ hands is a long story in its own right involving Marie Corneland an Amerindian warrior adept, Chingacha Red Hand.
This tragic fall of the last great LV master was Kurtis’ wake up call and on receiving the Chirugai a while later, he went after Eckhardt on a vengeance mission. With the terrifying discus-like weapon forged generations ago from meteorite alloy and one of the Periapt Shards to give him the edge he has made Eckhardt his personal project. And it will get merciless. Kurtis is now the only living full LV initiate and descendant of a true bloodline that goes back to the Knights Templar (although there may be someone else who…but that’d be spoiling things).
: Irenfolm – Iron Hand
: Irenscyld – Iron Shield
: Culcrys – SpearAxe
: Chirugai – Surgical Measures
* Annessa Chimoya* one of the names used by Morgau Vasiley, was actually the 18x year old daughter of Mathias Vasiley. She had clandestinely positioned herself as closely as possible to Konstantin in the hope of benefiting from observing his use of LV techniques. Her goal at that stage of her life was to clear her father’s name with the Lux Veritatis. For decades Mathias Vasiley had been on the run from both the Lux Veritatis and the Cabal and was incapable of allying himself with either until he had cleared his reputation as an apostate from the LV Order and being branded as a degenerate. She had cunningly switched around two of the weapons-casks containing Konstantin’s arcane weapons thinking that if she could get one into her father’s hands it would prove an invaluable resource. With Konstantin distracted by his fear for his wife’s safety Annessa/Morgau succeeded in making off with one of the weapons-casks but became caught up in a massive LV-Cabal battle in which she was brutally wounded and captured. The weapons-cask sank into the deep coastal waters off Gotland. Annessa/Morgau’s fate at the hands of Eckhardt and subsequent involvement with the lives of Lara Croft and Kurtis Trent/Heissturm is detailed in another document.
After treacherously eliminating his own brother, Captain Larks Ullsgarth of the Foreign Legion, Stellan Ullsgarth later became one of the reformed new Cabal under Karel, as did Allacord Siglum and Clarice Lanreath [game II The Lost Dominion].
Allacord Siglum was a bloodline descendant of the medieval alchemist savant Arne Saknussemm, a contemporary of Niccolo Machiavelli and Pieter van Eckhardt back in the 1400’s. No record exists of Saknussemm birth date but he was thought to have attained considerable years due to his alchemical researches. Like Eckhardt he did not appear to age, a condition which required many relocations and changes of identity for both of them. His collaboration with Pieter van Eckhardt and the demonologist Juan de Gruas in the creation of a certain set of satanic paintings (later know as the Obscura Paintings) brought him into ill-favour with the civil and religious authorities of the day and he fled Europe for a number of years.
By the late 1400’s Saknussemm had acquired a reputation as a great traveller and magus and was believed to have found a doorway into the deepest nether regions of the world where he had discovered previously unknown creatures and secrets of science and arcane philosophical significance. His achievements were later fictionalised by Jules Verne in his imaginative work Journey To The Centre Of The Earth.
Saknussemm’s works were burned by the Inquisition in Copenhagen in 1573. He was recorded to have been burned alive around the same time but a rumour began that there had been a substitution on the night of his pyre and he had slipped through the Vatican torturers’ hands. Three days after his immolation-disappearance members of the Inquisitorial Council began to die in the most public and horrific ways. This went on for nine months until every single one of the council and key conspirators involved in Saknussemm’s betrayal were eliminated.