Reaching Moon Megacorp's Life of Moonson
"The Red Claw"
Career: Lunar Military
Culture: Silver Shadow
Disposition: Cruel and Mad
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"Glorantha is a thin scum on the surface of a bottomless well. Prick the surface tension and Chaos floods forth. As it always has and always will. In the meantime, plead to the gods, grovel like a good little soul. Perhaps they will help you. Perhaps they will not. I do not go on bended knees. I demand. And I get what I want."
You are General Roan-Ur, son of the Red Emperor and commander of all his victorious armies in Aggar. Your troops and your enemies call you the "Red Claw".
You are, however, the Emperor's illegitimate son, the union of the Red Emperor and a nameless noblewoman, who gave you out to a Teelo Norri orphanage when you were born. When you were old enough your keepers divulged your father's identity and you were swiftly inducted into the Lunar Officer Corps.
Your career in the army might have been cut short when you made an embarrassing discovery - you were of half ogre blood. Despite eating two of your fellow officers, the whole incident was hushed up due to your parentage, and you were able to continue in your career. You have since managed to learn to control your blood-thirst. However, you are unsure of whether it is your father or mother who passed your ogre blood on to you.
Rising quickly through the Officer Corps you served in the invasion of Sartar, leading you troops with distinction and showing great personal bravery. As a result of these actions you earned yourself an independent command in Aggar.
Aggar at that time was in a state of rebellion, with even the king in revolt. You rallied those Aggarites loyal to the Lunars around the king's younger brother, Rascius, and put down the rebellion everywhere but Kree Mountain in the Autumn Mountains. Rascius you made king - your puppet and pawn.
Since then you have sought to scour from the land the rebels of Kree Mountain and all of their supporters. You have had many notable successes, yet final and total victory has eluded you.
Your formation and use of a Chaos Legion of broos, ogres and scorpion men met with stunning early successes but faltered due to the inadequacies and fears of the supporting Lunar Army units (they had the temerity to complain of their troops being eaten by your chaotics (in war there are always casualties). You were forced to execute most of your army commanders, in order to encourage the others to obey their orders.
Recently, you have been building more chaos forces and creatures through use of the Chaos Vats. These are based in a secret complex, nicknamed Brootopia, operated by you and the Black Army. You seek to grow new and more horrible monsters to destroy the rebels, while the Black Army's reasons are unimportant as long as they keep the Vats operational.
Your intelligence network now detects a weakening in the rebel's will to resist. All you need is one big push. With your chaos monsters, the Chaos Legion, and additional army reinforcements, total victory will finally be yours.
The Nobles of Silver Shadow
You were born into a family of the purest Lunar blood, within the mystical Silver Shadow cast by the Red Moon herself. Silver Shadow Sultanate is at the centre of the Lunar Heartlands, and its ruling families are descended from the Imperial House, through consorts and concubines of bygone Masks of Moonson.
The land is the throbbing, pulsating heart of Imperial power, glory and decadence. From your earliest youth, you have been observing the potentates of the Court, avoiding - or profiting from - entanglement in their intrigues, equally at home in the grand avenues of Glamour and the luxurious villas beneath the Crater's lofty crags.
There is no Sultan of Silver Shadow: this sultanate is ruled by Moonson himself.
You are a devotee of the Chaos God Cacodemon, as befits your Ogre half-blood. Cacodemon is a remnant of the army of Wakboth the Devil, Leader of the Chaos Horde, who was destroyed by the gods of order during the War of the Gods.
Cacodemon exists only to spread disorder and destruction, and to increase the personal power of his devotees. As a Talon of Cacodemon you have the power to call a Fiend to your aid, and the power to call down Cacodemon himself (though only if he too wills it).
The Imperial Lunar Army
You have followed a career in the Lunar Army. For young men and women of good standing entry to the army is made via the Yanafal Tarnil's Officer Corps. After a probationary period officers are assigned junior officer positions in Lunar regiments and to the general staff. They then rise through a hierarchy of positions until they finally gain the Captaincy of a regiment. Patronage plays an important part in an officer's progress.
A few lucky Captains may be posted to the Staff College of Polaris, and from there enter the General Staff as honoured Generals of the Army.
The head of the Lunar Army is General Bellex Maximus, the premier warrior and general of the Lunar Way.
Who You Know
Appius Luxius, Provincial Overseer: Some say he is also the Emperor's son, but you doubt this. You and he dislike each other intensely, and though he has supported your campaign in Aggar in the past, you now detect a sea change in his attitude. If he does not think you useful then he may seek your removal. Not now! Not yet!
Miriros Conradin, Head of the Unspoken Word: a senior Danfive Xaron Penitent who runs the Black Army's intelligence organisation. He helped you to set up Brootopia and provided the Longvale Papers upon which the Chaos Vats are based. He also provides the raw material for the Vats and other research - slaves.
Moonson, the Red Emperor: Your beloved father. Everything you have done has been for him, but he has yet to formally recognise you as his son. You must prove yourself and demand his recognition!
King Rascius of Aggar: You placed him on the throne after the Aggar rebellion and for many years he has been happy to enjoy his position, hoarding taxes and tribute and then gambling it away. However, recently he has had the temerity, no, the insolence, to complain about your methods in fighting the rebels! You must remind him that he owes everything to you!
The Red Dancer of Power, Chief Missionary of the Lunar Way: This demideity heads the cult of Etyries. You met her when she toured Aggar. She appeared as a beautiful young girl and, despite yourself, you were very attracted to her. You seduced her, then contemplated eating her, but in the end decided that eating her would not be politic...
Through your Career
General Lergius Cassius, Commander in Dragon Pass: A weak-willed simpleton in the same mould as that dead fool Fazzur Wideread. They see war as an honourable pursuit and are therefore weak. There should be Total War, no quarter, no mercy, no surrender and no non-combatants! Kill them all! Heh! Heh! Heh!
The Seven Year Plan is the mechanism by which the major food and raw material requirements of the Empire are centrally planned and provided for. At the beginning of each seven year period every sultanate and province agrees to quotas of important foodstuffs and other raw materials and goods which they must achieve over a seven year period.
A seven year plan has just ended and each of the sultanates and provinces will be audited this a sacred time on their results. Success is usually the route to promotion and Imperial favour, while failure is a sure road to political humiliation.
The Kingdom of Aggar was unified by the Lunar aid to one of its indigenous tribes in order to guard the rich crystal mines in the Eastern Autumn Mountains. Previous to the Lunar invasion the region was ruled by a number of Orlanthi tribes who raided each other and rarely co-operated. The kingdom is now governed by the descendants of the ruling family of the tribe which the Lunars helped.
The Court of the Silver Gate is a council of Satraps of the Empire. It meets infrequently, and can have great influence in determining the course of the Empire's destiny. The members of the Court of the Silver Gate are: ·
The Satrap of Doblian will also have a place, when one is appointed.
The Longvale Papers
from "Halgrim's War", the Reminiscences of Paulis Longvale
"...it was near Slimestone, where the giant gorp lived, that our outriders reported the enemy gathering, and soon we all could see howling creatures, leaping and lurching. As their numbers grew, so did their courage: these were broos of every nature, disgusting to the eye. some were Thedspawn, others clearly Greyskin grovellers of Primal Chaos, warped almost beyond recognition....
"...all through the evening parties of broos attacked, and were slaughtered by our bold men, who themselves suffered little. Yet the monsters launched themselves onto our spearpoints, so that a wall of dead built up before us. Oddi the Keen told me that it was ever so, for the race made little of learning and sought only easy vengeance for their goddess. * Yet it concerned him that unlike outbreaks in the past, the torrent of brookind this time seemed ever-inexhaustible, no matter how many he and his Storm Bull berserks slew. With the tenacity by which he earned his nickname, Oddi and his men set about rooting out the source of this corruption before another tide be launched against us...
"...in the end it was not Oddi's Storm Bull sense that found it, for we were led by our noses (or should I say the reeking stench that assailed our nostrils), to a vast pit on the outskirts of ruined Dokat. Even in the uncertain terrain of Dorastor this appeared to be newly excavated, and from it came shrieks, screams, hoots and whistles, and the sounds of great industry. Fetid vapours burbled up from the midst, and Oddi, his face ruddy and his eyes almost aglow with the outraged power of his god, was all set to lead his men on a headlong charge, heedless of whatever lay before them in the pit.
"Whether it was from a sense of recklessness or self-preservation (for I did not want Oddi and his men charging off to an uncertain fate, leaving those few of the rest of us to our fate in the midst of Ralzakark's realm), I offered to creep forward, and spy out the lie of the land. Oddi, the spittle beginning to foam at the corners of his mouth, bade me do so and hurry. While he and his fellow berserks prayed to the Bull and sung songs to their swords and axes, I ran ahead and crawled to the lip of the pit. The vision of hell I beheld lies etched in my mind, and haunts me to this day, especially in the quiet hours of the early morning.
"For the pit was a vast factory, a forge where raw matter was taken and cast anew as the stuff of chaos. The fetid stink bubbled from three giant vats. Hulking broo stood over them, armed with huge paddles with which they stirred the roiling stew and occasionally fished out blobs of formless matter that they deposited on the pit floor. Smaller, sleeker broo then took hold of them, rolling the lumpen shapes and chanting magics until twisted limbs - arms, legs, tentacles, wings, tails - and goaty, horny heads appeared. They were then herded into a corner and left, quivering and convulsing as their new bodies took their final, hideous shapes. But it is their screams that prey on my mind still, for as they took their first breath, each newborn would cry out in horror and revulsion as they realised just what they had become. For even chaos cannot create something from nothing, and there, in pens at one end of the pit lay the raw material - terrified peasants from Bilini and Talastar, with their cattle, horses, and sheep. Thrown in with them were several snarling, wild-eyed wolf folk from Nangtali's Plateau, and even some trollkin and Aldryami, too frightened to indulge in their traditional racial hatreds. Only the livestock were seemingly obvious to the fate awaiting them. At the command of an awesome, white-fleeced goatman, who I took to be the leader, several gigantic whip-wielding broo waded into the corral and picked out their latest victims, dragging them by hair or horns to the vats. By the leader's side stood a pale man in a dark cloak, and it seemed he was showing off the latest batch of captives, a dejected coffle of cowed hillfolk from Skanthiland.
"I slipped away, my heart pounding and my mouth dry, and told all I could to Oddi, to aid him in his work...
"...and so the pit was cleansed. Wakbotlar, the leader, who styled himself 'Father of Devils' escaped, and all that was left of his shadowy human lieutenant was an empty cloak. I thought Oddi would strike me when he discovered the Lunar army uniform inside it, and it chills my heart to this day to think that the Empire was somehow involved in the operation. One captive we kept alive long enough to learn of the foul rituals and processes used to brew chaos spawn in these vats, of which I sent down for reference below..."
Reaching Moon Megacorp's Life of Moonson was written by Nick Brooke, Chris Gidlow,David Hall and Kevin Jacklin, with Rick Meints and MOB. The lead author for Roan-Ur was David Hall; the introductory paragraph is from "An Interview with Roan-Ur," by Penny Love (short story published in Tales #16); The Longvale Papers were written by MOB.
Glorantha, HeroQuest, Hero Wars, and Issaries are trademarks of Issaries, Inc. The contents of this page are copyright by David Hall, 2001; any material derived from Greg Stafford's world of Glorantha is also copyright by Greg Stafford. Glorantha is the creation of Greg Stafford, and is used with his permission.