The Orlmarth clan is a fairly normal Heortling clan. Most men worship Orlanth the storm god, most women worship Ernalda the mother of the earth. They are the King and Queen of the Gods, particularly for the Storm Tribe pantheon.
You can expect some number of people in the clan to worship or follow other deities such as: - Barntar the plough god - Chalana Arroy the healer - Elmal the sun and defender of the stead - Humakt, god of death and war - Issaries, god of trade and communication - Lhankor Mhy, sage and lawspeaker - Odalya the bear and Yinkin the shadowcat, both hunters - Vinga the warrior woman and defender of the helpless
There are many other minor deities in the Storm Tribe (e.g Rigsdal the Pole Star and night watchman, Esrola the goddess of the grain and fertility, etc.). These figures are often subsumed under Orlanth and Ernalda, sometimes listed as a breakout ability.
Most of the Orlmarth are rural, living in steads in the Nymie Valley or below the Starfire Ridges. They herd, farm, hunt, and to a lesser extent fish.
Map courtesy and copyright of Moon Design Publications(Sartar:Kingdom of Heroes)
There are seven bloodlines amongst the Orlmarth, though the largest, the Vasmarings, are likely to split into two distinct and rival lines in the near future.
The three "old" bloodlines of the Orlmarthing trace their descent from Colymar's Sons or their followers. The bloodlines take the name of their founders.
Vasmaring, called Old Family • The Varsmaring bloodline traces itself back to King Varsmar Barntradusson Zombiebane, who was tribal king about two hundred and thirty years ago. He was the fourth king of the Colymar and fought alongside the Lismelder against the creatures of Beast Valley and in the Zombie Wars. His father was Barntradus, who first contact the Northern Tribes (the Tarshites). • They dominate Old Man Village and the ways to Voriof's Sheep Pen. They conflict with Greydogs and the Locaem to the south, but have good relations with the Ernaldori and the White Horse line of the Taralings. • Bloodline Members: c. 250 • Two branches: the Kentventssons and the Hendssons which have grown large, powerful, but increasingly divided. • Renowned Members (Hendssons): Gordangar the Clever (Chieftain), Mernyr Dangmetsdottir (wife of Gordangar), Savan Thundermaker (Gordangar's brother), Orlmarkt Braveheart (mercenary huscarl), Heortalor Gordangarsson, Koroldurev Gordangarsson the Goodspeaker • Renowned Members (Kentventssons): Orlgard Korlmasson the Lawman, Yerestra Kingswidow, Erynn Long-Shanks, Korlmhy Storm Voice, Ranulf Wordsmith
Urothorlings, called Bluesheep • The descendents of Urothorl the Blue Ram, the oldest bloodline. The bloodline has always been strong with magic. • They primarily reside at Oranesstead by Orane's Loom, the Ernalda holy site, as well as steads around the Guardian Woods and the Big Starfire Ridge. • Bloodline Members: c. 200 • Renowned Members: Morganeth White-eye, Hantrafal Runemaker, Willandring Windspeaker, Wilms Vak the Bulltamer (thane), Enterossa Three-Sticks, Olav the Carpenter. The heroes. The main steads and family lines: Oranesstead
Hindelssons, called Ploughmen • The descendants of Hindel Many-Fields, a supporter of Sartar. • They primarily reside in the farmlands south of Old Man Village along Misty Creek and have been upset with the Lunar Slave Farm placed on their lands, regularly demanding compensation from Gordangar and even King Kangharl. • Bloodline Members: c. 200 • Renowned Members: Thandren Longface, Insterid Cold-As-Winter, Harla the Black, Jenest the Brewer, Esrolki Law-wise.
The four "new" bloodlines have emerged since the Resettlement and do not trace their lineage to Colymar.
Ufarholtings, called Woodpeckers • The Ufarholtings were once members of the Vostangi clan whose feud with the Lismelder was settled without a single death. But the clan no longer exists, dying out from an enemy's curse which brought Mallia to them. The Ufarholtings include the survivors of the Vostangi, adopted as cottars. • They live in a couple large steads around Smokey Hill and have an ongoing dislike of the Greydogs and Hillhaven clans of the Lismelder • Bloodline Members: c. 125 • Renowned Members: Ovartien Stoneheart, Drogar Twice-Outlawed, Korolanar Dogbiter, Ordaral the Grim, Effendar the Black, Korolvanth the Troublesome Poet. NOTE: Some of Aren's lands were given 3 years ago to Ordaral the Grim to win Ovartien Stoneheart to Chief Gordangar's side during the Great Compromise of 1614.
Ellisifssons, called Bonebreakers • Ellisif Many-Kin led the survivors of the Stream-Vale settlers to safety as cottars after the Zombie Army burnt their houses and fields in the Beastmen Wars. • Half this bloodline lives at Old Man Village, the other half near the Guardian Woods. • Bloodline Members: c. 75 • Renowned Members: Loricon the Smith, Enika Mistress-of-Tales.
Skiordings, called Ridgeleapers • Skiord the Quick and his followers fled Volsaxiland when the Kitori Darkmen ravaged the Marzeel vale. They were adopted as cottars. • They live in a couple smaller steads up north on the Big Starfire Ridge. • Bloodline Members: c. 75 • Renowned Members: Havarnos the Quick, Fedarka Copper-Key, Eranina Copper-Axe.
Askinings, called Swankin • The descendants of Askinval Hardnose, this rising bloodline in the north below the Starfire Ridges keeps a close eye on the Colymar Wilds and trades with the neighboring Hiordings. They joined the Colymar and list King Rostoran and King Orlgandi Rastorsson in their line. Population: c.150 • Renowned Members: Kalf Garstalson called Coin-oak, Marusa Goodweaver, Hedgar Sharpsword, Theya Jenalasdottir.
Clan Values - part of your Orlmarth clan keyword • Hate Lunars • Shrewd • Courageous • Cautious • Traditionalist
Clan Abilities - part of your Orlmarth clan keyword • The Wind Childrens' peace ritual • Ride Horses • Sheep Herding
Clan Slogan No one can make you do anything.
Clan Secret • Your clan knows the secret that Death restores Life - Returning Orane from the Hut of Darkness
Clan Flaws • Cannot sense Ogres as Chaos • Fear Dragons
Ancestors • Ogorvale Summer and Ulanin the Rider (aided by Garan Low Star) • Orlanth • Thunder Brother: Helamakt the Fighting Storm
Relationships with Neighbors • 3 Friends (Ernaldori, Zethnoring, Hiordings) • 3 Allies (Taraling, Enhyli, Red Cow-Cinsina) • 5 Enemies (Greydogs-Lismelder,Varmandi,Antorling,Lysang,Malani)
Other Relationships - part of your Orlmarth clan keyword • Hate Fire Tribe and its worshippers • Hate Ogres • Hate Arkat • Hate God-King • Hate Delecti • Hate Undead • Hate Tusk Riders • Hate Lunars • Allied with Wind Children
Wyter Abilities Sacred tula includes: • The Guardian Woods - the Guardian's Heart is the most sacred place • Old Man Village • Orane's Loom Manifests as: • Flock of Red-headed Woodpeckers -- they are particularly evident from Stormseason through Fireseason in the form of a flock Red-headed woodpeckers who start drumming to warn of the presence of enemies on the land of the clan. • A finely carved and painted stick, surmounted by a stylized red-headed woodpecker. This stick is used to invoke the Wyter in various ceremonies and preserved more carefully than any other object. • The Drumming Tree in Old Man Village. Abilities: Awareness • Detect Undead Abilities: Blessing • Keep Folks Fed • Do Something New • Raise Mists over Earth • Cleanse the Ogre taint • The Secret Well Abilities: Defense • Storm Call (Thunderstorm Blessing) • Rain of Sky Spears (Get Help From The Stars) • Resist Summons of the Bright Emperor (Fight Fire Tribe) • Douse Fire, Scatter Embers (Extinguish Flames) • Starfire Cleansing (Survive Ordeal by Fire) Flaw: • Cannot sense Ogres as Chaos
Clan Notes • Shrines to Orlanth and Ernalda • Relationship to the Jonstown Lhankor Mhy temple-library • Clan Patron: Orlanth
Clan Myths Eurmal Breaks the Two-faced Mirror The Battle of Extinguish Field Orlanth slays Sh'karhazeel the Mover of Heavens Rigsdal and the Beast of Many Eyes The Blazing Trail of Garan Low Star
Attitudes to Lunars • Hate: Lunars
Clan Tattoos (top: male on chest; bottom: female on back)
Favoured Old God: Larnste, God of Movement. Asrelia's Treasures: The Full Dish and Spoon, The Two-faced Mirror Helped Umath When: Defying the Bright Emperor. Joined Orlanth Because: He challenged the Bright Emperor to Contests of Dancing, Magic, and Music, and then killed the Emperor with his new weapon, Death. Earliest Famous Event: Battle of Extinguish Field Marriage of Orlanth and Ernalda: Air Joined By: Karantuel, the Cloud Folk Ancient Enemy: Venebain the Lightfore Nearly Exterminated By: The Chaos Gods. Chaos Foe: Ogres. Survived the Great Darkness By: A star captain, Garan, fell screaming from the sky, and his light led us safely through the Darkness. Unity Council Ally: The Wind Children, a remnant folk Heortling Tribe: We belonged to the Ogorvaltes First God Awakened: Orlanth Resisted Lokamayadon: Pretended to go along with High Storm, and waited for a good time to rebel. When Arkat Came: Raised all our forces to fight. When Arkat Betrayed Us: Offended, but we still worked with him against Gbaji. Attitude Towards EWF: Suspicious Lesson from the Dragonkill: Never try things that go against Orlanth's way. Left Heortland Because: We hated the God-King, and wanted to discover new lands. Settled: Hills and Highlands, some Flatlands New Enemies: The Undead of Delecti, the Tusk Riders New Friends: The Beastmen and the Ducks New Tribe: Colymar Tribe King Sartar: He sponsored temples and libraries. Lunar Missionaries: We drove them off, or at least refused to let them enter our steads. Tarkalor's War: We fought honorably, but not insanely. Lunar Conquest: We chose to bide our time until a good day for rebellion came. Infighting: We argued that the mere absence of a king should not suspend Heort's laws. Starbrow's Rebellion: We sent all our warriors to fight. Temertain: We hate him, but there is nothing to be done. Duck Hunt: No, we secretly aided our friends.
The following are the positions and members of the Orlmarth clan ring as of late 1617.
Orlanth the Chieftain: Gordangar (of Vasmarings) - carries the clan wyter, wears the torc Ernalda: Morganeth Whiteye (of Urothorlings) - head of Women's Council; keeper of the Great Loom Orane/Esrola: Enika Mistress-of-Tales (of Ellifsifssons) - keeper of the Green Basket Kero Fin: Insterid Cold-As-Winter (healer, of Hindelsons) - holder of the Baby Cauldron Lhankor Mhy: Orlgard Korlmarsson (of the Vasmarings) - holder of the Marking Bone Hedkoranth: Ovartien Stoneheart (of Ufarholtings) - owner of Great Weighty Issaries: Kalf Coin-oak (of the Askinings) - keeper of the Staff called Scorch
Notes: All the heroes are part of the Urothorling bloodline, Breya being grand-daughter to Morganeth. Gordangar, Kalf Coin-Oak, and Insterid are all known to favor the Eye of the Storm policy and usually agree on most rulings in the clan. Ovartien favors blood feud with the Greydogs of the Lismelder clan and total control of the Starfire Ridge for the Orlmarthi. Aren, up at Starfire Ridge, has seen periodic disputes between his stead and those of the Ufarholtings, particularly over the position of various boundary markers. Some of his stead lands were given to Ovartien after Starbrow's Rebellion. Orlrik was very close to confronting Chief Gordangar over the Lunar presence. Orlgard worked with the heroes during their investigations the prior day.
The heroes do not live in a vacuum! Many ideas and attitudes are at play in the clan around them. Here are some questions to get you thinking about how your characters react to events and people within the clan.
Note: I have bolded the opinions most common at Oranesstead.
1) Clan Direction For most of the last 15 years, Chief Gordangar has led the Orlmarth. In the short period when he did not, Durevanth Maniskisson backed King Kallai Rockbuster and led the clan into Starbrow's Rebellion. More clan members died, including Durevanth, and the clan lost Wealth as a consequence, including good farmland in the Nymie Valley to a Lunar slave farm! Since then, Gordangar has kept a general peace for the clan - what Hantrafal terms "keeping in the eye of the Storm". Not all agree with this policy, though. Which describes your hero's views?
a) I'm with Chief Gordangar, Insterid, Savan Thunderer (chief priest of Orlanth) and Hantrafal (leader of my bloodline): We should look to our flocks, our fields, and let the storm blow over. It is hard for all clans, but we carry on in a position of strength with strong allies. b) I'm with Orlgard the Lawmaker and Willandring: We were defeated in the Disaster Year and Starbrow's Rebellion because we have forgotten the old ways of Heort and Orlanth. We must strengthen Orlanth so that his power can rip the Red Moon from the sky. We must reenact the ancient heroquests of our ancestors to bring back the power of the gods. c) I'm with the Morganeth who sees the future and Enika who knows the old tales: Unite or be defeated by the Moon Tribe! We must unite the Heortling people as Orlanth did to defeat the Fire Tribe. With cattle, marriage, and peace rugs, we can settle disputes and find another way. d) I'm with Kalf Coin-Oak: Yes, we should look to our flocks and fields, but we cannot hide from the storm. New winds are stirring in the world. Only those aware can ensure the clan benefits from them. We must take advantage of these winds to increase our resources and survive. We must unite with those who are strong for our advantage. e) I'm with Ovartien and Erinina Copper Axe: We suffer because we have let our enemies grow strong at our expense. The Greydogs have always been our foes. They raid our flocks again and take what is ours. We should make the Greydogs pay our tribute to the Lunars! f) I'm with Thandren and the carls: Last year, the Lunars took almost half the wealth of the clan. We cannot afford a tax of more than one part in ten. We must do whatever is necessary to reduce the Lunar tax - be that rebellion, Duck hunts or sacrifice to their evil gods. If our leaders do not get the Lunar tax reduced, we will need to get new leaders! g) I'm with the winds of rebellion: We should never yield to the Lunars, and must always strike against them when we can. h) I follow the winds, wherever they lead: the winds come and go, and so do our leaders. It's best if we enjoy life, whatever it brings.
2) Clan Enemies Our clan has many enemies, some ancient, some long-standing, some new, some worse than others. It is our tradition and the will of our Ancestors that we oppose these enemies. Which enemy do you think the Orlmarth should oppose?
a) I'm with the Ridgeleapers and the Woodpeckers: The Greydogs are not like us. They keep dogs and have webbed feet. Ever since their king, Ordag Lismelder, sacked Old Man Stead and tried to seize our pastures on the Ridge from our Clan, they have been our foes. They murder our shepherds and take our livestock. Curse them and their ancestors. b) I'm with our Hiording cousins, our closest friends: The Varmandi are savages. They raid and murder wherever they go, stirring up war. Only the Colymar King has ever stopped them, and we must support him in doing so. Curse them and their ancestors. c) I'm with our Ernaldori cousins, our strongest friends: The Antorlings and the Lysang are no better than the Varmandi, or the ever-warring Malani, and they disparage and disturb wise Nymie and beautiful Orane. They always raid us as their trees and their valley are poor in comparison. We must raid them for it is our duty to uphold the honor of Orane and the counsel of Nymie! d) I'm with our Zethnoring cousins, our severed friends: The Locaem ally with the Moon Tribe and the Fire Tribe, our ancient enemies. While we hold no standing feuds with them, they grow fat and rich at our expense. We must raid them to restore our wealth and make them pay our tribute to the Lunars! e) I'm with our Enhyli cousins, our horse-riding allies: The undead of the Upland Marsh are a true evil that must always be fought. We must always add our support to their efforts to suppress these monsters! Quests are more important than raids. We need more magic from Elmal and Humakt! f) I'm with the Peaceweavers: There is Always Another Way. We must unite the Heortling people as Orlanth and Ernalda did. With cattle, marriage, and peace rugs, we can settle disputes and find another way. g) The Old Enemies are the True Foes: Raiding is fine, but we must not engage in feuds with the other clans. Our true foes are the old ones: Chaos and Dragons. Insidious ogres seek to infiltrate, murder, and destroy us. Dragons seek to lure us with their mysteries and turn us into inhuman monsters. We must engage in the myths that strengthen Orlanth and Ernalda and stop the incursions of these evils.
3) The Colymar King Strife of 1615 King strife divided the Colymar tribe and the clans two years ago. These events have not been forgotten even though Kangharl is king and Leika Ballista is exiled. What do you think of the King Strife?
a) I'm with those Taraling cousins who support Kangharl: Kangharl has brought peace with the Lunars and lowered our tribute. b) I'm with those Taraling cousins who support exiled Leika: Kangharl has brought vengeance against those who supported Leika. These folk are now impoverished and exiled. King Blackmoor has no honor, and we will never support him. c) I'm with Gordangar and the Ring: The Taralings are always feuding amongst themselves and it is best to stay out of their strife. We have accepted Kangharl as King of the Colymar. d) I'm of the Orlmarth: The Orlmarth are the greatest clan of the Colymar! Four kings in the last hundred years came from our clan. There will be more even if the Taraling rule now. e) It matters not who is King: The King does what the king does. We live our lives as our ancestors did. f) We must be like the Anmangarn, the Black Spears: When Kangharl became King, it was clear he had allied with the Moon Tribe. The Anmangarn took the Black Spear into the Colymar Wilds to protect it from the Lunar sorceries. Kangharl has not dared to reclaim it, and has no honor. We should withdraw our support.
4) Changes on the Clan Ring. Two of the recent clan moots were particularly notable. In Fireseason 1616, there was much outcry amongst the thanes for more raids and tests of their skills. Chief Gordangar decided that the carls had too much power and removed Thandren Longface of the Hindelssons from the ring, replacing him with Ovartien Stoneheart of the Ufarholtings. And just this past Fireseason 1617, Gordangar named Erinina Copper Axe, a young Vingan thane of the Skiordings, and close ally of Ovartien, to be Clan Champion, replacing your kinsman, Wilms Vak, known as the Bulltamer from the quest in his youth to Storm Walk Mountain. Chief Gordangar claimed the Ring and the Thanes needed new blood in each case. How do you feel about these changes by Chief Gordangar?
a) Gordangar is a skilled chief and knows how to balance the clan. b) Gordangar has tired of listening to the peaceweavers and wants to restore glory to the clan. c) Gordangar is afraid of losing power - he bought off the Dogkillers to give him time. d) Gordangar is weak and his hand was forced by the Dogkillers. e) Gordangar fears the growing power of Orlgard and Morganeth in the clan and acted to weaken their power. f) Gordangar is always changing the Ring - that's the way of chiefs, even Orlanth.
Where did the world come from? Dead the world til Umath the Free Broke Emporer's curse and moved the world
Where did I come from? Humans are wind born, freest of free Orlanth Breath Giver gives you first lungful Follow the winds, like Orlanth before you Yours is the path choice, make it and live
Why am I here? Life is for living, feel to your fullest Challenge the challengers, carve out your place Faithfull to friends, relentless to foes Loving to kith, fufilling your wyrd
Why do we die? Stale the world was, unchanging and solid No one could die, so no one could live Orlanth and Humakt, brothers in bravery Brought Death to the world and gave life an edge.
Slew they the monsters who undying plagued us. First of them Unchange, who binds us to sloth. Now there is Death, who prompts us to live life, Slayer of foes who brings respite to friends.
What happens after we die? Death is a comrade, a tool for our needs. Orlanth found it, and fought it in turn, Defeated Death fully, and brought the Sun out, Fulfillèd is Quest, the Lightbringers’ glory.
Death is the boatman, guide to last journey Carries you safe to the gods brazen hall. There presides Orlanth, his table for heroes Tell him your stories, take your right place
Why am I here? Life is for living, feel to your fullest. Challenge the challengers, carve out your place. Faithful to friends, relentless to foes Loving to kith, fulfilling your wyrd.
How do I do magic? Great among gifters, storm gods gave magic, Taught runes to godi, first among followers. Godi teach feats, wise men learn them. Magic lets all men work with the world.
Hear the Truths about...
...Chaos? Foulest of slime, curse of existence, Twisted the god gifts, bred many foul monsters. Only the Lightbringers, conquerors of Chaos, Could right the wronged world, restore the Law.
...Darkness Tribe? Mother of the trolls saw the world born. Crawler in darkness, eater of dead. Hungry and cruel, like the dark days of winter, Lurking at gates, waits for men to grow slothful.
...Fire Tribe? Yelm ruled a world that was stale and changeless. Many the Yelm sons who held world in bondage: Venebain, oldest foe; Gold Gryphon, grim gatekeeper; Heliakal, unbending law; Jagrekriand, mace of war.
Yelm ruled a world that was stale and changeless. Orlanth, his enemy, released freedom for all. Yelm met Death, he fled down the dark path, Only Orlanth and Lightbringers walk that path alive.
Orlanth the liberator, freed loyal Elmal, Brought him to honor into a thane’s station. Elmal follows his path, unwilling to break it, But Orlanth is free to follow the winds.
...Shepelkirt Red Moon? Lover of Chaos, mocks the gods’ blessings, Tangles the wind in her secret shackles. Gives blasphemous secrets to lure the unwary, Destroy her now or the world is enslaved.
...Sorcerers? Woe to the atheists, they die without gods, Souls sink slowly, fall empty to hell.
...Spirits? Great were those who fought Orlanth’s gifts, Many were broken or made to be small. Now the survivors are spirits for bushmen, Kolatings coerce their small magic spells.
Notice and praise those spirits sundered, Some can be helpful, perform useful deeds. Do not give them worship, keep from them your soul force, That is for King Orlanth, their conqueror and master.
Hear of our Gods, blessed Storm Tribe...
Chalana Arroy, the White Woman, healing goddess Her touch heals all, Lightbringers’ white lady, No hurt can withstand her soft ministrations, She healed our chieftain when pain made him mad. She healed the world, made Life come again.
The Earth Goddesses Three are the bounteous goddesses of earth, Three the number of their dark sisters. All are our allies, friends of the storm, Orlanth claims all earth as his kin.
The giving goddesses; grandmother, mother, and daughter. Asrelia the crone, keeper of good things. Ernalda the mother, bride to great Orlanth. Voria, spring’s daughter, herald of youth.
The grasping goddesses; sisters to the kindly ones. Ty Kora Tek, hag-lurker in darkness. Maran, violent sister to kindly Ernalda. Babeester Gor, vengeful guardian, jealous of the earth’s rights.
Ernalda, earth mother Mother of all, wise spouse to King Orlanth, All hail and protect fair mistress of earth, Every man must revere the arts of all women, Mother and lover, her needs are our wants.
Eurmal, the trickster No jape nor trick too hard for the Trickster, Stole fire from Vestkarthen to warm all mankind, Was both boon and trouble to his traveling companions, Stands loyally by Orlanth his lord. Heler, god of rain Orlanth took Heler from Magasta’s dull lair, Used him as weapon in wars against drought, Heler the staunch, his name is a by-word, Sheep to him sacred, Daga his foe.
Humakt, god of death and war Orlanth’s fell brother, noble Death-Finder, Humakt is guardian, protector from foes. Humakt brought Death to ennoble and free us Gave us struggle to make our lives full.
Inora, goddess of snow When mountains extend their cold to the lowlands, Inora, White Princess, dances among us. When summer arrives, sends snow from the valleys, Inora, Snow Queen, reigns still on the peaks.
Issaries, god of trade and communication Issaries found the way of the dead, Broke Darkness of Silence which covered the world. Issaries chose trails, was scout for the Lightbringers, Now merchants and heralds worship his name.
Kolat, the shaman Kolat’s strange family, the spirit Seven Winds, Three names are known, the Three Good Friends, Three names are secret, Left Hand, Above, and Below. Kolat is the secret helper, the hidden power.
Lhankor Mhy, god of knowledge Finder of riddles, he knows the world’s secrets, Rescued all wisdom from ignorance’s gloom. Helped save the world during the Gods War, Now lawspeakers and elders call for his praise.
Mastakos, god of motion Mastakos Mover, the God with No Home, Vigorous god, drives immortal storm chariot. He alone handles Orlanth’s mighty steeds. Servant of Storm God, mover of men.
Orlanth, King of the Gods, Storm God Orlanth Adventurous makes change in the world, Rescued us all from stagnation and death. Orlanth Thunderous brings life-giving rains, Blesses the plowman, blesses his herds. Orlanth Lightbringer led the Seven, Rescued all life, all earth lauds his name. Orlanth Rex, King of the Gods, Rules in the Heaven and takes tribute from all.
Umath, father of the storm gods He was born with great noise, deafening, disabling Like thunder in a cavern, Like living in a horn. His visage rolled over the earth with anger, Rumbled across the sky with greed, Filled the space with his gray brows and thunders. Umath’s five sons ruled the world after him. But he made the place for his sons and us to live.
Urox, berserker god, Chaos-killer Untamed beast, savage passion, His mad berserk fury beats even Chaos. So doth wild Storm Bull lead the war against Chaos. He holds vile Wakboth under mountains of stone.
Valind, god of winter Savage Valind, god of winter, Sweeps the earth with ice from the north. Ally to Orlanth, sometimes wayward and willful, Each year takes the earth in his grip
Vinga, warrior goddess No spindle or basket for Vinga the dauntless, Red-headed daughter, warrior maiden, Fought off the ice, fought water and darkness, Defender of women and children in need
From priests and god-talkers, skalds and sages, most of the Orlmarthi know this collection of tales of the Fire Tribe.
The Fall of Umath When the Evil Emperor refused mighty Umath a place in the world, Umath made the Air and knocked the Sky Dome askew. The Evil Emperor still refused to accept Umath and give him a place. So the Emperor sent his bloody lieutenant, the Red God Jagrekriand, against Umath. Umath was destroyed and that set off the horrible time called The Gods War. In that turbulent era, the parts of the world fought itself; gods grappled, and threw landmarks at each other. The Old Gods of the Celestial Court were destroyed and shattered.
The Illavani and the Fire Tribe Some men even took wives from the daughters of the gods, binding the races of men and gods together. Illavan was one of those early men and was loved by the gods. He won the hand of the divine Erena, daughter of the Sky, who had 150 mothers and 50 fathers and innocence from all, for she was gathered from the spring flowers of Above. Illavan and Erena had many sons who in turn took wives from the Erena’s sisters. His family, the Illavani, was proud of their marriage alliance with the Sky Gods and they asked their friend Quivin to build a great stone hall so high that from atop it they could ride their horses to the Golden Palace of the Sky Gods. When the Sky Gods looked at the Illavani, they grew jealous and angry. The Sky Gods ordered the Illavani to give up their wives and return them to the Sky. The Illavani refused. This defiance shocked the Sky Gods for no mortal had ever refused their orders.
The Sky Gods said, "We must destroy the Illavani and the blessed Ereni, lest they join the Umathings in rebellion against the Emperor. We shall follow the Attacker from Above and burn them to death." And so the Sky Gods accompanied Venebain to kill their own sons and daughters, rather than let the Sky be soiled by us mortals. Venebain hurled himself down from the Sky, screaming and flaming and accompanied by his fellow demons. The sky demons burnt the great hall of the Illavani until it half-collapsed. They burnt down the high tower until it was nothing but smoldering ashes and cinders. They killed every Illavani and Ereni they could with flames and fiery stones and persecuted the few survivors.
Orlanth, the young storm god rebelled against the Emperor and killed the ruler of the Sky Gods with Death. Aided by the Illavani who joined his tribe, Orlanth and the storm gods attacked Venebain and his demons, and thunder and hail overcame the Sky Gods. Orlanth took possession of the high ridges we now call the Starfire Ridges and gave them to the victorious storm gods. He cast Venebain down into the burning ground where the Star Tower once stood and tasked the survivors of the Illavani with the responsibility to guard against their escape. Even now, that part of vengeful Venebain trapped in the Cinder Pits tries to escape and wreak havoc upon us for daring to ever defy the commands of the Sky Gods. However, the spirits of the Illavani took the form of red-headed woodpeckers and their ceaseless hammering reminds the Venebainings of the Thunderer’s might and keeps them in their prison.
Venebain Venebain is one of the great enemies of Orlanth from the Fire Tribe and and carries celestial and planetary powers. His name means "Attacker From Above". Venebain is also called the "skirmisher of Jagrekriand", "arrow of the Archer", "spear of the Young God", and "flame of Polaris" because he is sent first into battle by these deities. Venebain is one of the Fire Tribe who is often associated with the planet Lightfore. Venebain’s minions are made of living fire, taking the form of angry red-skinned men with long blazing hair and multicolored wings. They breathe flame and poison, and carry burning spears or flaming stone. Orlanth fought and defeated Venebain and his minions at the Battle of Thrinbarri of the Clouds.
The Illavan Clan The Illavan Clan lived in what is now the Cinder Pits during the God Time. They were betrayed by the Fire Tribe, who cast fire down from the heavens on the Illavan and destroyed them. Their ghosts are wreathed in flames and scream in agony and rage. When Orlmarth the Founder first encountered the Illavan, he swore to take their enemies as his own. Whenever the Orlmarth encounter the ghosts of the Illavan, they remind them of Orlmarth’s oath and are allowed to pass in peace. Each year the chieftain and the priests of the Orlmarth travel to the Cinder Pits to renew the oath.
Venebain and the kidnapping of Tarahelera When Jagrekriand - the evil Red God - defeated the Water Gods, his brother, the Sky God Venebain, captured Tarahelera and took her as his concubine. As a result, Tarahelera stopped bringing her gentle rain to our ancestors. Ernalda knew that without her rains, the people of the Storm Tribe would suffer and she told her lover Niskis to steal Tarahelera and bring her to the Storm Tribe. Niskis and his companion Yinkin the Cat went to the Sky and snuck into the Golden Hall of the Sky Gods. With Yinkin's help he avoided the guards - and bypassed the terrible baying hound Rowdril. He made his way through the labyrinth of chambers and apartments and made his way to Tarahelera's chamber. With his words and his wiles, the young god seduced the Blue Woman and charmed her into coming with him willingly. Tarahelera showed Niskis a secret way out of the palace and the three fled the Golden Hall together. When Venebain discovered that Tarahelera was gone, he charged out after Niskis. However, Venebain did not summon his brother Jagrekriand, and Niskis defeated him and his companions. Niskis then fled the Sky and returned to the Storm Tribe with Tarahelera, who blessed the people of the Storm Tribe with her gentle summer rains.
Urox and the Red Fireman Urox fought against Dared, a chieftain of the Fire Tribe called the Red Fireman, and his followers when the latter marched across the land. They met at the Aurochs Hills. Urox sent his great beasts to run around and around them. The enemy got confused and dizzy, and went to sleep atop the distinctive pillar-like peaks of the area.
Garan the Low Star Not all of the Fire Tribe were foes. Garan was a son of Helamakt and Senstena, one of the Low Stars. Garan was a guard patrolling the boundaries of his lord’s celestial holdings. Because of his low estate, Garan had never been under a roof, and he owned nothing but the spear named Ifrendal. While he had been patrolling he often looked far below, and watched had watched Serias. She was the most beautiful woman of the Vingkotlings, seven generations descended from the Archer, but her clan had been scattered, and she had been left behind when they fled from the snow wolves. Garan dashed below, streaking to her side and destroying the entire pack. He took her back to her family, made fire and fed them. They afterwards followed him, and he made many safe places for them to find refuge. When the Sinthog attacked the people, Garan fought it alone and destroyed it when he burst into flame. Garan and Serias founded a new Star Tribe, the Garanvuli, ruled by their children and heirs.
In the time of your grandparents and great-grandparents, in the reign of Colymar King Dangmet Jostharlsson, back when the peaceful potters of the Arnoring clan were dominant in the tribe, there occurred a strange event called the Dragonewt's Dream. According to Aren's father, this was shortly after Aren's great-grandfather Rigslanth had passed the rites of Elmal. A huge number of phantom dragonewts appeared going about mysterious tasks, particularly to the south down by the Blue Mound at Clearwine Fort and to the northwest by the plinth atop the Upper Starfire Ridge. These phantoms could not be touched by living people or by magic, yet their works affected the real world.
People avoided these phantoms just like they avoid real dragonewts. Some folk claimed these were parts of a dragon's dream. Other claimed that they were dragonewt ghosts performing ancient tasks again. Still others believed they were an attempt to rebuild the Empire Without Friends, but without humans involved. And a few thought they were special hunters, sent out by the dragonewts to cleanse the world of spirits and magic.
Ever since the Dragonewts Dream, dragonewts occasionally visit the Blue Mound at Clearwine without comment or explanation.
You all know or remember well this event from 15 years ago whether you (or a kinsman) were there or you heard the stories from the survivors or saw the aftermath. Runegate is only 10-15 miles from your clan lands, the center of the local Elmal cult. For most it will be a formative event from your childhood.
In 1602 the Lunar Empire made a major effort to crush Sartar. The Red Emperor himself led the army and crossed the River south of Dwarf Ford. They marched through the Dragons Eye and towards Runegate Fort, where most of the Sartar army awaited. The two main armies faced each other near Runegate Fort. The Lunar army made camp and rested, watching and waiting. At the height of the Full Moon specters haunted the Sartar camp, and an army of corpses marched out of the Upland Marsh and assaulted Runegate. The defenders were skilled and valiant as they cut down the undead which clumsily clambered over each other to storm the walls. Their priests worked hard to kill the dead with magical fires, only occasionally dampened by moonlight, and the healers exhausted themselves to help their companions.
The next morning the Lunar army attacked the fort using the newly killed corpses as if they were ramps to scale the walls. When the main army attempted to intervene the Lunar cavalry harassed them and did not allow them to get close. That night a glow from the north unreasonably frightened the Sartar army. Many fled and saved themselves. Others watched as a huge bat, town‑sized and glowing like the Red Moon itself, heavily flew into sight and clumsily swooped towards Runegate. The city spirits attempted to halt it, but were crushed when it landed right within the walls. The very towers themselves burst from this effort, and the people of the city were seared and eaten. However, the eastern gate (the “Rune Gate”) and those sheltering beneath it survived both the attack of the Crimson Bat and the subsequent inferno.
Copyright Moon Design Publications from The Sartar Companion
In 1611 ST, the Orlanthi of Aldachur raised the Righteous Wind to free the Far Point from Lunar rule. The Righteous Wind blew against their foes, who called themselves the Moon Storm. The Moon Storm collapsed, throwing most tribes into confusion. In response, Harvar Ironfist of the Vantaros tribe seized control of the region in the name of the little sun, Yelmalio, and aided by Gagarthi outlaws crushed the subsequent rebellion of Orlanth against his rule with fire and sword. The Lunar Imperial Overseer named Harvar the Duke of Alda-chur while many refugees swarmed southwards into the lands of the Torkani and Cinsina, and some even to the Hiordings and Lismelder tribes.
At the Orlmarth clan moot of Fireseason 1611 ST, Durevanth Maniskisson from the Ufarholting bloodline, challenged Chief Gordangar to support the Righteous Wind, fight our ancient enemy the Fire Tribe, and overthrow Harvar. Chief Gordangar refused noting the Orlmarth must choose the right time to rise against such oppression. Durevanth challenges Gordangar's right to rule the Orlmarth, and won the challenge!
As chief, Durevanth rallied the Orlmarth thanes to the cause of the Righteous Wind, even though Aldachur was lost to the Lunar. He readily committed the clan to King Kallai Rockbuster and Starbrow's Rebellion. He fought well at the Battle of Hofstaring's Flood. But Durevanth overreached himself pushing his men north with his Righteous Wind allies, and he fell with his thanes to the counterattack by General Fazzur Wideread. Only Nisk the Outlaw returned, and he was exiled with the Greater Outlawry for his deeds.
The Righteous Wind blew no more. The Ufarholting bloodline was crippled, leadership falling to Ovartien Stoneheart and his grim, quarrelsome, Greydog-hating, companions. The sole surviving Maniskisson, Darstaval, is more interested in ale than war.
You all know this event - it occurred just four years ago.
Four years ago in 1613 ST, the Colymar tribe mustered under the leadership of King Kallai Rockbuster and joined King Hofstaring Treeleaper of the Culbrea tribe, Queen Kallyr Starbrow of the Kheldon tribe, and the Urox cult in armed rebellion against the Lunar Governor of Dragon Pass, General Euglyptus the Fat. King Kallai was a rich and mighty king and joined the rebellion reluctantly, but ultimately agreed to fight the Lunars rather than allow them to desecrate the Hill of Orlanth Victorious.
At first, the Sartarites achieved a surprising victory at the Battle of Hofstaring's Flood. King Kallai and his kinsman Kangharl Kagradusson led the Colymar against the disorganized Lunar soldiers. They were joined by the Kheldon tribe, led by their Vingan queen Kallyr; on the other side of the river, the Culbrea led by King Hofstaring Treeleaper attacked those Lunars who managed to cross the river. This was not a battle – it was a massacre. For the Lunars, the battle was a complete disaster as the core of the Lunar Army in Sartar was shattered beyond repair.
Sartar was proclaimed free and Queen Kallyr Starbrow revealed her lineage proving she is an heir of the Royal House of Sartar. Soon after, the Colymar warriors returned to their clans, leaving the kings and priests to argue about when Queen Kallyr would relight the Flame of Sartar.
The Lunar Empire’s retaliation for Starbrow’s Rebellion was swift and terrible. In Fire Season, General Fazzur Wideread of Tarsh arrived in Alda-Chur with a new Lunar Army and took command. His first published directive was ordering the execution of General Euglyptus for his mishandling of the rebellion. The Sartar High Council once again sent out emissaries to the tribes. Once again, King Kallai reluctantly mustered the Colymar tribe for war.
The army of Sartar mustered at Larnste's Table, a place sacred to Larnste, god of movement. But the Lunars surrounded them there and every day more Lunar soldiers arrived. Each day, the Sartarite kings debated and decided to refuse to come down from the stone plateau. The Lunars began constructing lines of circumvallation (fortifications encircling Larnste’s Table) and prevented the Sartarites from slipping away. The Sartarites appeared doomed, as more and more Lunar soldiers arrived, blocking off every avenue of retreat.
Finally, on Fire Day of Illusion Week, heralds came from General Fazzur, their safety guaranteed by Issaries. The heralds brought news that another heir of the Royal House of Sartar, Temertain the Librarian, had arrived in Boldhome. General Fazzur summoned the Sartarite kings to meet with him on neutral ground. There Fazzur revealed that he had agreed to a treaty proposed by Temertain’s advisor Redbird.
King Hofstaring of the Culbrea refused, tried to escape, but Fazzur’s Lunar demons captured him and condemned him to suffer eternally in the Lunar Hell. The other Sartarite kings – King Kallai and Queen Kallyr – agreed to exile. Those folk who joined the rebellion atop Larnste’s Table swore to the Terms of the Lunar Peace. The Sartarite army disbanded and returned to their farms and herds. The rebellion failed.
The origin of the durulz, the anthropomorphic duck people or wereducks of the Upland Marsh of Dragon Pass, is a mystery to outsiders. Rumor says they claim to have once been the rulers of the world until their own sins and errors forced them into subservience to lesser races (elves, trolls, etc.) and, later, to humans. Ducks keep their secrets to themselves.
Most folk find the ducks to be argumentative, bullying little rascals, tempered only by their innate cowardice, which has endeared them to no one. However, they have some power against the undead of the Upland Marsh so are tolerated by the nearby tribes. Many fear that without the ducks the clans will be overrun by hordes of Delecti's undead.
Some ducks of old were well-noted and highly regarded such as King Hoarfoot (the second of that name), who fought in the Zarran Wars, and King Thunderthroat (being the fourth of that ilk), who died bravely at the battle of Grizzly Peak. When the Sartar High Council was formed by Kallyr Starbrow, one of the leaders of the ducks became a leading advocate for a united rebellion. This duck argued so strongly and brought forth such agreement amongst the council for the rebellion that many former foes united in the effort.
Following Starbrow's Rebellion, Governor-General Fazzur Wideread, commander of the Lunar forces, agreed to pardon all of the recent rebels except for one group, who he said were the cause of the entire trouble. The Provincial Government blamed Starbrow’s Rebellion on the durulz, one of the beast people who had been loyal to King Sartar. A bounty was placed upon the durulz by the Governor-General; a proclamation was made that any Sartarite who delivered the body of a durulz, dead or alive, to the local Lunar military outpost, would be relieved of one year of the heavy tribute imposed by the Lunars. For many that amounted to one cow's worth of tribute - a substantial relief.
Most Sartarite tribes acquiesced in the Duck Hunt even though some individual clans, such as the Orlmarth, the Black Spear, or the Good Sword of the Lismelder, did not. As for the durulz, many fled into the Upland Marsh, some downriver to the Holy Country, while others became notorious bandits lurking in the river valleys. However, the ducks were so important to the river trade that even at the height of the Duck Hunts, local administrators in towns such as Quackford tacitly protected their community.
It is not known for certain what the Lunars do with the ducks, other than that the living were sold as slaves. It is rumored that the dead are eaten by Lunar cultists in their rituals.
There remain persistent rumors that the Lunars will announce another Duck Hunt any day now. And some folk and clans persist in attacking ducks whether to gain a bounty from unscrupulous Lunar officials or just out of pure hatred for the race.
Chief Durevanth Maniskisson was dead, Starbrow's Rebellion crushed, King Kallai Rockbuster exiled.
At the Orlmarth clan moot in Fireseason 1614 ST, Gordangar reasserted the need for a strong chief and a need for peace with the Lunar Empire. Kalf Coin-Oak of the Askinings and Ragnar Shaggybreeks, leader of the Hindelssons and the carls, challenged Gordangar's claim. The clan was divided three ways, and the threads of Orane's great tapestry appeared to fray. Yet the Great Compromise was reached.
Ragnar Shaggybreeks, ever a loud and unruly man, was disgraced and withdrew his claim. Kalf Coin-Oak agreed to serve as Issaries on the Inner Ring, and the place of Barntar was given to Ragnar's rival, Thandren Longface. With those agreements, the clan united again around Chief Gordangar, and peace and prosperity have returned.
Some claim it was the careful work of the women of Orane's Spindle that wove the Great Compromise. Others say that Morganeth White-eye was guided by a vision from Kev and pulled the right strands together. A few point to the disgrace of Ragnar Shaggybreeks as the thread that had to be pulled and the subsequent exile of the foundling, Hendrick Willemsson.
Since Starbrow’s Rebellion, the Colymar have been torn apart by kinstrife between two claimants to the tribal kingship, both from the same clan – Queen Leika and King Kangarl.
Leika “Beti” Orlkensorsdotter, one of the Red-Haired Women of Vinga, was the leader of the “Ballistan” warband, an independent band of warriors and adventurers bound together as her personal companions. She allied with Redbird the Sorcerer during Starbrow’s Rebellion and went with him to Nochet to find the heir to house of Sartar: Temertain. The Ballistans snuck Temertain into Boldhome where he managed to cause the Flame of Sartar to flicker to life. However, under Redbird’s influence Temertain made peace with the Empire and the Ballistans returned to Colymar lands.
King Kallai had been king of the Colymar during Starbrow’s Rebellion, but was exiled by Fazzur in the wake of his victory over the Sartarite rebels. Leika presented herself as a candidate for king and undertook a brave and harrowing journey into haunted Snake Pipe Hollow to destroy Chaos in its own lair. She succeeded and was acclaimed Queen by her joyous people, without any preliminary legal preparation, despite the other rivals. Her triumph lasted barely a year.
One rival was her own kinsman Kangharl Kagradusson, formerly the Colymar war leader during Starbrow’s Rebellion and who led the fight against the Lunars at the Hill of Orlanth Victorious. A proud and bold thane of his kinsman Kallai Rockbuster, Kangharl was a leading figure in Starbrow’s Rebellion and none could stand against him in battle. Yet two years later, after years of fighting against the Lunars he finally succumbed to Lunar sorcery and embraced the Lunar Way to further his ambitions. He seized the leadership of the Colymar tribe from his kinswoman Leika Orlkensorsdottir with Lunar aid.
At the tribal assembly of 1615, the tribal Goodvoice, Henkist Coin-in-the-Hand challenged Leika to produce the Ring of Command (a great golden torc woven from seven strands of gold twisted together and part of the tribal regalia) but she could not do so. Leika confessed that it had been stolen from her. Snorri Farsighted, the tribal lawspeaker, reluctantly declared that according to clan law, she had harmed the tribe, was no longer an acceptable ruler, and would have to go into exile. In the ensuing uproar, Kangharl Kagradusson had the assembly exile Leika and proclaim him tribal king. He revealed that he had negotiated with the Lunar governor for a reduction of the tribal taxes which won over many allies.
Several days later, at an Orlmarth clan moot, Gordanger explained that a hurried meeting of various tribal leaders had agreed to not oppose Kangharl, for the following reasons:
1) Kangharl was one of the most powerful warriors in the tribe, and he and his clan were willing to fight for his claim to the throne. In particular, the Varmandi and the Konthasos refused to oppose Kangharl because it would lead to war. 2) Several clans, include the Arnorings, the Enhyli, and the Konthasos, supported Kangharl because of the promise of lower taxes. 3) The Hiordings supported him because their clan was closely allied with the Taralings. 4) The Narri refused to commit to either side. 5) Only the Black Spears were willing to explicitly oppose him, while the Ernaldori and Gordanger discretely opposed him. Gordanger, Orlgard, and Morganeth agreed that in such a situation, prudence dictated that they not openly provoke violence.
The Black Spears declared that he was King Blackmor (an ancient insult against those traitor kings who sold their people out to Arkat and the trolls; and meaning that he had behaved without honor), and left the tribal hall, taking the sacred Black Spear with them, saying that he should come take it if he could.
The new king did successfully persuade the Lunars to reduce their tribute on the Colymar. But the price was high: Lunar demons were allowed in the sacred tribal lands, many of the magical guardians removed, and a Lunar slave fort was permitted in the Nymie Vale.
The fierce warriors of the Anmangarn clan have continuously refused to present Kangharl with the Black Spear – the sacred wyter of the Colymar tribe – and have retreated into the wilds. Rival warbands fight and pillage; King Kangharl’s Black Oak Brotherhood harry those who still support Queen Leika, and in distant Whitewall, Queen Leika and her companions enjoy the support of High King Broyan. Many fear it is only a matter of time before civil war tears the Colymar tribe apart.
The following are by trail: - Oranesstead to Longear Stead: ~1 mile / 20 minute walk - Longear Stead to Wilanth's Stead: ~2 miles / 40 minute walk - Wilanth's Stead to Boneman Stead: ~1 mile / 20 minute walk - Boneman Stead to Starfire Stead: ~2 miles up winding trails onto the ridge / 90-120 minute walk, very dependent on weather
Over rough ground: - Wilanth's/Boneman Steads to Cinder Pits: ~1/2 mile / 15 minute walk
North from Boneman Stead (along Northward Trail): - Boneman Stead to Skane's Stead: ~2 miles / 40 minute walk - Skane's Stead to Askining's Stead: ~2 miles / 40 minute walk - Askining's Stead to Colymar Wild (Black Spear land): ~ 2 miles / 40 minute walk
South from Wilanth's Stead (along Thunder Trail and other trails) - Wilanth's Stead to Stone Creek: ~1 mile / 20 minute walk - Stone Creek to Old Man's Village: ~3 miles / 1 hour walk - Stone Creek to Misty Creek: ~2 miles / 40 minute walk - Misty Creek to Lunar Farm: ~4 miles / 80 minute walk - Lunar Farm to Clearwine Fort: ~2 miles / 50-60 minute walk including crossing the ford of the Nymie