Necromancers and Skeleton Warriors
Finally, it was time to introduce the adepts of Dark Magic. Without them, the undead army could not rise from their graves to fill the Vampire Counts ranks. Rejected by mankind and cursed by other mages, they balance on the brink of life and death. The greater their willingness to sell their souls, the greater their obsession to pursue the dark secrets of necromancy becomes. What pushes them to such drastic things as sacrificing their own lives to practise the forbidden Dark Magic? The reasons could be many, from revenge for injustice to greed and the drive to gain great power. One thing is sure, they will have no lack of dead to resurrect and more than a few Vampires will be happy to use their services.
The presence of necromancers in Bretonnia is not so rare at all. Many of them hide in the cursed Dukedom of Mousillon. Not many brave souls venture into this area, but those who have returned say that it is crawling with the living dead. Zombies, skeletons, direwolves - these are just some of the creatures roaming the fields, woods, marshes and graveyards. My army of Vampier Counts was joined by two wizards of Dark Magic: Greimand Vauer and Constans le Noir.
I decided to do a freehand on one of them in the form of a skull on his cloak. All of this is to emphasise his position as Master Necromancer. In addition, I had the opportunity to have some fun with the OSL effect, which is meant to symbolise the magical power that accompanies the resurrection of the undead.
If we are already talking about the living dead, it is impossible to mention skeletons, which are one of the basic units in the undead army. The fallen bones of warriors and land residents are great material for resurrection. They do not feel pain, they do not break under the pressure of the enemy. And on top of that, they inspire fear in the eyes of living beings. I equipped my two units of Skeleton Warriors with spears and shields. I painted the banner and the ribbons yellow, so that they refer to the colours of the Dukedom of Mousillon. The symbol of the serpent, on the other hand, refers to Mallobaude, the infamous knight of this dukedom, bastard child of the Bretonnian king Louen Leoncoeur himself. It was the Black Knight who eventually made a pact with Arkhan the Black and became the vampire Blood Knight.
Of course, there was no way to miss the fillers that replace the 2x 9 skeletons. One depicts a piece of graveyard with gravestones and skeletons rising from the earth. The second focuses around the cracked tombstone of a knight surrounded by statues of gargoyles and candles. Here, I experimented with OSL and I really like the end result of illuminated graves and ominous-looking sculptures. In addition to the fillers, the role of the skeletons is also played by tombstones, which I made from a pvc sheet. The vulture, on the other hand, as well as the aforementioned gargoyles and the knight's tombstone come from Mini Monsters. I've won them at various tournaments for WFB and I'm glad I was able to make use of them.
Speaking of fillers, I must also mention the skeleton musician. Originally it has a trumpet in the box set. However, it seemed so unrealistic to me that a skeleton without vocal cords blows a trumpet. So, instead of the aforementioned instrument, I gave him another, more appropriate one for his deceased state. The choice fell on the violin, although a drum also seemed an interesting option. As you may have noticed, the skeleton musician holds the neck wrong. His hand and fingers should be facing the other way. I'll write straight away that this was a deliberate procedure to indicate that the necromancer was not entirely successful in bringing him to life. I made the movement trays just as I did for all the undead, using Crackle Paint Badlands from Green Stuff World, which gives a great cracked earth effect.