This disease is new to the Empire, so those contracting it have little idea what to expect. It starts with an itching at the back of the throat that slowly develops into an intermittent cough. Along with the coughing comes bouts of shivering that grow steadily more severe as the disease progresses. In the final days, the afflicted develops pale gray blotches across their neck and chest, dying or recovering soon thereafter. Those that survive find the marks slowly turn white but never entirely go away. The few that know of the disease also refer to it as the Pale Shivers.[1a]

Nelrich the Suppurater’s disease was meant to cause a long period of relatively light illness followed by a swift death. Actually, the Grey Ague is not entirely a disease, nor does it cause the majority of the listed effects. The Ague is, in fact, a magical affliction that causes a body to generate a subtle organic poison. The Grey Seer Asorak Steeleye carefully influenced how the Grey Ague worked, so he could readily manipulate those with the disease. By giving those afflicted the correct “enhancers” early in the course of contracting the disease, the effects are instantly doubled.[1a]

The “cure” the Grey Seer and his allies have in their possession instantly eliminates all traces of the poison the Ague generates—which seemingly cures the afflicted, but it does nothing to halt the disease. Anyone drinking the Skaven’s cure that is afflicted by the Grey Ague has all of their characteristics return to normal levels within an hour. But the cured person still has the Grey Ague, and every time they stop taking the Skaven’s cure—they start at the beginning of their ten day stretch, meaning that they need a continual supply of the Skaven’s cure in order to not fall sick again.[1a]

A skilled apothecary that has deduced the nature of the Grey Ague can help to permanently cure it, but they need to treat both the disease and the effects of the poison. A Priestess of Shallya can instantly cure the Grey Ague only by successfully casting both Cure Poison and Cure Disease—a fact that they will be completely unaware of.[1a]


  • 1: Warhammer Fantasy RPG 2nd ED -- Terror in Talabheim
    • 1a: pg. 41

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