"Lord Dubiel is a very persuasive individual, however. Once under his influence, many have found themselves capable of hitherto unthinkable acts."
Dubiel was one of the Wielders, the group of rebels who took control of the Wire after the fall of the guardians, then altered their minds and bodies to better protect the rest of humanity. Like some of his fellows, he chose to grow closer to his instruments, becoming part machine. But Dubiel grew thirsty for power, and started a secret war against the other Wielders to increase his own share of the Wire's energies. He killed half of them through "deceit and treachery" before the others united, forcing him to flee to his own lands far to the south.
Over the millennia, he attacked his former allies two more times, once even managing to reach the Dreamwright machine before he was driven back. After this, he hid again, and the other Wielders grew apart from one another, more concerned with their own private goals. As Dubiel no longer had access to the Wire, his energies began to dwindle. In secret, he began to hunt for ways to increase his power, including the ancient Staff of Blue Light. Amonwelle feared that if he ever got his hands on it, he would be unstoppable.
Dubiel featured heavily in the fairytale books known as the Fabularies, which were popular in both The Wheel and Jogjaw Pass. He was said to be the King of Evil's son, always wore red, and was "the monster children feared when the last candle was blown out at night". Young people thought of him as nothing more than a fable to scare wayward children, but the adults knew better.
The metal flowers
Dubiel was able to spread his mind over several bodies by placing a small seed of living metal into someone's brain. As the seed slowly rooted and grew into a flower, he was able to gain more control over his victims. First, he only knew where they were. Later, he had some influence over their actions. Then, he could see what they saw and feel what they felt. Finally, he could leap into their bodies if his current form became uninhabitable. The flower could even control people after they had died, but only for a short time.
Since the flower grew even faster when Dubiel inhabited the body, and would eventually kill its victim, Dubiel was always looking for an opportunity to infect another of his enemies. When the body died, he could feel it, and the sensation would make him furious for days.
When Eil do Mer of Bright Star arrived on the planet, she happened to land her ship in a swamp near Dubiel's lair. He and his minions met her curteously, and while her guard was down, he used his powers to take over her ship. With this new technology at his disposal, he launched many assaults on the Unseen Wall, started hunting down the tribes of the candlemen, and used the Wire's repositories of power to unleash natural disasters over much of the world, including the Wheel.
Traveling around in a boxlike device carried by his soldiers, he began to hunt for the Staff of Blue Light again. Hitch saw his carriage near Pandandoleet's cottage, but managed to flee before they reached it. Shortly afterwards, Dubiel made his way into Diligence's caravan in the middle of the night, infecting Nury with the metal seed. He followed the caravan from then on, and Hitch spotted his carriage again in the Madescent when the caravan was traveling to Paddifraw's Repose. At the ramble house, Dubiel tried to slay Hitch through Nury, but instead killed Alacrity, who was sleeping in Hitch's bed.
When the caravan reached the village outside the Unseen Wall, Dubiel infected Grapple while everyone else went on to the crystal palace. Here, Dubiel once again tried to kill Hitch through Nury, but the attack failed, and Nury was killed. When Breitling went to say goodbye to his lover's corpse, it rose up and killed him, and he was infected with the metal seed, though Pomponderant and Amonwelle's scientists were able to remove the seed from his corpse before anything happened.
While Jassad Attqua was retrieving his golden ship from the lake, Hitch spotted a "stooped form clad all in black" stealthily sneaking up on him. As the dark stalker lifted a weapon and pointed it at Jassad's back, Hitch charged forward and struck him with the Staff of Blue Light, causing an explosion of light that reduced Dubiel to a smoking pile of scorched garments. For a time, they thought the Shadowsmith was dead, but through Nobbon Half-hob, they learned that he had managed to move on to his last body.
Dubiel, now inhabiting Grapple's body, forced Nobbon to steal the Staff of Blue Light from Hitch and bring it to him. When Nobbon refused to hand over the staff and pleaded for peace, Dubiel killed him and took the staff. He was about to slay Hitch and Diligence, when the group's alter suddenly charged him. Its claws slashed down just as the staff flashed, and both Dubiel and the alter were slain.
Dubiel was very arrogant and powerhungry, but could be charming if it suited his goals. According to Lord Grott, he considered the northern lands to be "seepholes of decadence and foulness". His underlings spoke warmly of him, but they may not have had much of a choice in the matter. When the soldiers learned of his final death, they wandered aimlessly around, "sorrowing and blank-faced" as the darkness disappeared from their hearts.
Nobbon Half-hob claimed to be his "valued confidant", but it's quite possible that he was lying.