Curse of the Crimson Throne
Blood veil takes its name from its most apparent symptom, a rash and mask of blisters that covers the face. In its initial stages, the disease is characterized by headache, fatigue, coughing, and the aforementioned rash. As it progresses, the cough becomes more obtrusive, the rash spreads to the neck, face, and limbs and develops into pox-like blisters, and the lymph glands swell into painful buboes. At its most advanced stage, the blisters grow to the size of grapes or larger, internal bleeding creates black patches on the skin, and blood is expectorated. Ultimately, a most unseemly, wheezing death occurs. If left untreated, blood veil kills the average human in approximately 7 days.
Blood Veil first appeared in Korvosa the day after the sinking of a mysterious ship bearing a yellow quarantine lantern. To combat the disease, Queen Ileosa summoned Dr. Reiner Davaulus from Cheliax, who then formed the Queen’s Physicians.
The party subsequently discovered that Dr. Davaulus was working with the Cult of Urgathoa to develop, perfect, and spread the unnatural disease, perhaps at the behest of the Queen. Working assiduously with Ishani Dhatri and the clerics of Abadar, Zandu was able to reverse engineer the results based on notes retrieved from the Hospice of the Blessed Maiden.
Ishani and Slim, meanwhile, discovered that the plague was based on an earlier supernatural illness, Vorel’s Phage, which was created several centuries ago by the failed lich Vorel Foxglove. Vorel’s Varisian wife Kassanda appears to be protecting her descendants from the phage and its variants, explaining why a subset of Korvosa’s Varisian population has proven immune to the illness—including Slim and his cousin Vittora, as well as the musician Ruan.