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Sara Krowler was born in Bavaria, Germany at some point prior to World War I. Her father was Heinrich Krowler, a skilled practitioner of the Dark Arts. She received limited training in how to use magic herself. Her only demonstrated powers allowed her to spy on others and communicate through a magic mirror. She could also act as a conduit for the mystic powers of her father.
Following World War I (1914-1918), Viscount Krowler felt humiliation in seeing his beloved homeland defeated and unstable. He swore vengeance against the Allies of World War I (particularly "England, France and America"). But soon realized that his own mystical potential was too limited to achieve this goal. The best Krowler could do was prepare a descendant of his to achieve far greater power. At this point his only descendant was the untrained Sara.
Heinrich needed a son-in-law and soon found him. He arranged the marriage of Sarah to Nikolai, Baron Mordo. He was a Transylvanian noble who had formerly served the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Nikolai had been trained in sorcery and was currently attempting to create a new "Carpathian Kingdom". He had enough mystic potential to produce a suitable heir for Krowler's purposes. Nikolai was unaware that his new bride was spying on him. Reporting all his activities to her father.
The couple eventually had a son: Karl Amadeus Mordo. For a while this changed nothing in their relationship. But then Nikolai got a bit too close to achieving his life's ambition. His father-in-law had now intention to see a new kingdom rise to rival Germany. So he authorized Sara to assassinate her husband. She called on the powers of her father and easily accomplished the deed. Nikolai may have been skilled in sorcery but was caught unaware. He didn't expect his own wife to attack him.
Sara was left a young widow, in custody of her young son. Who inherited his father's title and estates. Sara soon arranged for them to leave Transylvania. Returning to Bavaria to live with her father. Heinrich was able to start training his grandson in sorcery. Though the young boy kept mourning over his father. Karl was under the impression his father had died of natural causes. One day, a teenaged Mordo overheard Sara and Heinrich conversing. A conversation which mentioned the murder of his father. Mordo was shocked. But kept his knowledge secret for the time being.
Heinrich passed most of his magical knowledge to his young grandson. Then arranged for young Mordo to become an apprentice of the Ancient One. A training that would make the grandson far more powerful than his grandfather. But Heinrich used another spell to secretly spy on Karl and consequently on the Ancient One. Thus learning a few more spells. Sara continued living with her father.
By the 1930s, Heinrich was active within the Nazi Party and personally familiar with Adolf Hitler. In 1943, the aging sorcerer used his recently acquired skills to summon Dormammu on Earth. Hoping to use the mystical entity to end World War II. His attempt backfired and Heinrich returned home a broken man. Sara was forced to care for her now invalid father. At this point, Mordo decided to take a break from his studies in Tibet, returning home.
Sara may have been happy to see her son again. But would soon regret it. Mordo had been spying on his family, waiting for a moment of weakness to avenge his long-gone father. This was his moment. of vengeance. He sacrificed his invalid grandfather and weeping mother to Dormammu in exchange for an alliance. Killing two birds with one stone. Sara pled for her life, reminding Mordo: "I'm your mother". He merely replied that this what gave meaning to the sacrifice. Then taunted her that demons would soon be feasting on her essence "as you cry for thrice-blessed death".