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Black Company Wiki

Black Shroud was the nickname of the mysterious sorcerer who plagued the city of Rue in the short story "Chasing Midnight: The Dark Lord as a Teen", a part of the On The Long Run story arc. Not a public figure, he covered his hideously disfigured and reeking body with black gauze, and traveled around in a kind of vaporous mist that was difficult to observe and focus upon.

"Chasing Midnight"[]

Black Shroud and his business partner, the gangster Songo Songaghi, sought to discover the secret to immortality. Songo secretly delivered young male sex workers to Black Shroud, who conducted lethal sorcery experiments upon them in his otherwise abandoned fabric mill using a talisman called the Shine.

Murder of Songo[]

When a young man called Chasing Moonlight stole the Shine, Black Shroud used destructive sorcery to collapse Songo's house down upon the gangster, killing him and some of his thugs. The wizard then traveled through the streets of Rue to a tavern called the Silent Owl to confront Chasing Midnight, Moonlight's sister, about the whereabouts of the Shine. She escaped with the help of her cousin Fade.

Twice ambushed at home[]

Black Shroud later kidnapped Moonlight, and foully corrupted the young man's body and mind with his vile sorcery. He continued his experiments on his other young victims, but without the Shine, his power and vitality became attenuated. The missing Shine was also required to keep Moonlight alive. Black Shroud at first seemed unaware when Chasing Midnight and Chick eventually infiltrated his fabric mill, but soon spotted them. He disabled Chick with a single touch, but tumbled over in agony, vomiting, when Midnight kicked him in the crotch. He removed his mask, revealing an appalling face that looked both burned and rotted. As she and Chick fled with Moonlight, Black Shroud warned them that Chasing Moonlight will die without the Shine. In reply, Midnight simply threatened to kill him if she saw him again.

Later, Songo's remaining thugs surrounded Black Shroud's fabric mill and broke in to try to find the Shine. The ugly sorcerer was present, and defended himself successfully with ferocious spells. The violence was so loud that the Black Company's Lieutenant summoned Rue's "seventh century" (a reserve force) and brought his wizards to investigate. After this, Rue's city fathers placed a bounty on the sorcerer's head.

Final confrontation[]

Black Shroud, decrepit and still desperately seeking the Shine, confronted Chasing Midnight outside the Silent Owl tavern a second time. Preceded by his characteristic reek, he demanded yet again that she turn over the talisman, only to be shot in the wrist by a crossbow bolt fired by Fade. The stench of his yellow blood was so appalling that Midnight vomited. As the sorcerer made one more run for Midnight, Fade fired again, and Black Shroud collapsed in defeat. Midnight and her cousins escaped as onlookers argued about who would claim the reward. Although Moonlight died, Midnight still entertained the idea of finding the Shine for herself.