The story begins with Vesemir saving a noble child from a leshen in a forest in Kaedwen. Before dying, the creature says something in an archaic elven dialect to Vesemir, leading him to think it was controlled by someone.
Vesemir reminisces about his youth when he, along with his best friend Illyana, were servants for a noble whose mistress had suddenly fallen ill. A witcher named Deglan deduced that the woman was possessed by a Mahr and successfully exorcised the monster with Vesemir's help. Enticed by promises of coin and riches, Vesemir left Illyana and traveled to Kaer Morhen, and after years of brutal training and body-altering experiments, he became a successful witcher, notorious for his skills and arrogance.
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