Unhallowed Metropolis: Treatise on the Night Raven Threat


The British began a series of experiments to counter the animate threat in their empire. One of these was the creation of super soldiers known as Thropes. Although these soldiers were claimed to be used to solely fight animates, it didn’t take a genius to realize the potential for military applications against other  foreign powers. Thus, through our own research as well as some choice espionage, the Night Raven Project was born.              

Using both Human and Raven (specifically Corvus Corax) DNA, the Prussian Science Academy created the Night Raven, a thin humanoid creature standing between 6 feet to 7 feet tall and covered in black greasy feathers. It has three fingered claws and upon its face is a dark yellow beak powerful enough to crack bone. The Night Raven is significantly weaker than their British counterpart, the Thrope, although slightly faster. Which is incidental, since their purpose is not combat, but infiltration.

The Night Raven, either through stalking its prey or an ambush, grabs a potential target and begins the process of transformation, a method that is less like the killing methods of a predator and more that of a ritual murderer. It jabs its beak into the victim’s eye and with it’s powerful jaws, splits the skull. It then consumes the brain of the victim. Its meal complete, it begins to transform into the victim, repeating the words “see, think,” in a combination of high pitched words and squawks. Where they learned this phrase is unknown, but it is assumed to signify taking the victim’s sight with its beak and consuming the victim’s brain. What is more curious is that it’s understood by those around the creature in their native language.  Even those Night Ravens raised without contact with other ravens repeat the same words without fail.

A Night Raven is not truly sentient, not even in its borrowed human form. It relies on instinct, its primary focus being the urge to mate, sleep, and protect its territory. When it transforms, it uses the memories of its host to create the impression of sentience, using rote skills, common phrases and learned behavior to mimic humanity for as long as necessary. It is as though they are looking for the right answer for a question from a encyclopedia of past phrases grabbed from the victim’s memories. Prolonged exposure to the Night Raven in its human guise will eventually result in those intimately familiar with the victim realizing something is amiss with their companion.

The process of training these creatures was just beginning before the event known as the Koinberg incident. Although the initial vector of infiltration is unknown, at some point, a number of Night Ravens took over a large portion of the staff and released their companions into the wastes over a period of a few days. By the time the escape was discovered, it was too late. Most of the captive Night Ravens were released, the rest taking many live before they were put down.

Now, the Night Ravens have become a threat to the Prussian Empire. They have already infiltrated many of our smaller communities in the empire. Within this document are guides, weapon specifications, and psychological tests to use against the Night Raven threat. You are the shield against a terror that may do what no other force has ever done. Destroy the greatest empire in existence. Good luck, Agent.  

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About the Author
Jesus “Arvandus” Rodriguez is the founder and website tweaker of the Fandible podcast. When he isn't out creating imaginary worlds for his players, he also runs a youtube channel where he writes short fiction in various fictional worlds. https://www.youtube.com/c/ArvandusTheStoryteller

5 comments on “Unhallowed Metropolis: Treatise on the Night Raven Threat

  1. MDMann says:

    Notes: agents intercepted this treatise at great cost and returned it to the Great British Empire through the East India route. It should be noted that the author is sadly misinformed of the origin of Thropes. Charitably his weak German mind believed the vile propaganda formulated by our enemies. Less kindly, he’s part of the Imperial Prussian Spy apparatus spreading these vile lies. Regardless, it seems academic to the rest of the treatise. It’s worth noting there is no doubt of the perfidy of the Night Raven origins and the folly of their inception. SM.

  2. Arvandus says:

    Great addition MDMann. I’ll add a little.

    Please have it be noted that the breach allowing for the treatise to be intercepted by British intelligence has been closed and the double agent has been “debriefed”. Any British official who tries to use this against us should be reminded of the “Byron incident”. As much as that Noble has caused us issues, his exploits has given the Prussian Goverment a certain amount of usable material. It is determined that plans for his assassination be put aside until absolutely necessary.

  3. MDMann says:


    Most of the agent known as Knight Ryder (Sir Daffyd Haase) was fished out of the Danube at the Charles Bridge following receipt of these files. His loss will be great and this great Welshman mourned. His widow Pamela can take consolation that his sacrifice was deemed acceptable for the knowledge gained. It is unknown at this time whether this noble lady will enter the mourners guild.

  4. Very cool stuff, I did the Night Ravens a lot and I think you’re awesome for having come up with them for Unhallowed Metropolis. I was considering running Unhallowed Metropolis for my friends in the near future, and was wondering if you guys would mind posting your cheat-sheets online?

  5. Sigh. I meant I *dig* them a lot. Now I’m embarrassed since there’s no edit option.

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