- Know this... the young witch is special to Chthon. She will be loyal to no coven.
Appearing in "Birth of a Witch"
Synopsis for "Birth of a Witch"
Ian McNee prepares for his next two quests; Morgan le Fay gives him an enchanted petal to swallow that will allow him to communicate with plants and animals, but warns him that the beings guarding the Serpent Crown will be the most dangerous foes he’s faced.
Years ago in Eastern Europe, the werewolf Gregor Russoff chases young Wanda and her brother Pietror back to their village, where Maria Russoff says she will meet the gypsy queen, Lilia. Margali Szardos playfully taunts the Russoffs and looks forward to seeing the young Wanda.
The two children run to their parents, where their mother tells Wanda that she has been summoned by the Witch Queen of the Gypsies, Lilia. Wanda and her mother walk to the gypsy encampment past a group of modern tourists to greet the Gypsy Queen. Though appearing to be an old woman, once inside the wagon the Queen reveals herself to be a much younger woman. She wears the Serpent Crown and shows Wanda the Book of Cagliostro and bids the wagon driver to take them to Castle Russoff.
At the same moment in Morocco, the wizard Damballah greets the fakir Taboo, keeper of the Darkhold. Taboo shows Damballah a vision of of the three Eastern European witches, Lilia, Margali Szardos and Maria Russoff, as they discuss the coming portents around Wanda, predicting she will be a major force of Arcana. They observe friction arising among the three witches over Lilia’s increasing possessiveness of the Serpent Crown. Because Lilia has the Serpent Crown the two mages believe that young Wanda’s ascension will further Set’s interests instead of their own patron deity Chthon’s. They decide to battle the witches. Taboo opens a portal to Castle Russoff.
In the castle, the three witches invite Wanda to live in Castle Russoff with them, telling her she is destined for great things. They join Gregor Russoff (the wolf) in the courtyard just as Taboo and Damballah teleport in, aiming to abduct Wanda. Damballah tries to take the Serpent Crown from Lilia’s head, but Maria conjures a squadron of skeletons to fight him off, but he counters with a number of giant snakes. The Werewolf joins the fray too, but the fight is quickly ended by a magical blast from young Wanda, casting her first hex. This causes the Elder God Chthon to manifest; he speaks through the Serpent Crown and through each of the sorcerors present, saying that a great sorceress has awoken and she is not to be claimed by any group of coven, and that the Serpent Crown shall revert to the ice, and that all present will have children of occult significance.
The witches confer, and decide that Wanda is best taught the arcane ways by Agatha Harkness in America. They return Wanda to her family, marvelling at the power she will one day wield.
Appearing in "Ritual of the Sphinx, Part 3: Sharper Than a Serpent's Tooth"
Synopsis for "Ritual of the Sphinx, Part 3: Sharper Than a Serpent's Tooth"
Ian McNee leaps into the Atlantic Ocean, invoking Watoomb for protection and summoning dolphins to escort him to the location of the Serpent Crown. He encounters a massive half-serpent, half-woman guarding it, and touching its mind, learns she was once a child Laura, and then a priestess of Set named Llyra, who was stripped of the crown by Set and now assigned to guard it.
Soon Nagala arrives and, after forcing Llyra to stand down, invokes the names of Set and obtains the Serpent Crown. When Ian makes a move toward it, Llyra stops him and threatens to kill him. He says she is nothing but a servant of Nagala’s, which angers her. When Nagala comes to challenge him too, he binds them both with seaweed. They easily tear free, but he gives Nagala pause when he mentions to Ebon Rose in his possession, a sister artifact to the Serpent Crown. If its power were added to the Seprent Crown, Nagala says it would make her more powerful than Set himself. This blasphemous statement enrages Llyra, who attacks her, tearing the crown from her head.
As the two are fighting, Ian McNee makes off with the Serpent Crown, using the Winds of Watoomb to propel himself to the surface, where he realizes he has one more challenge to face.
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