NOTE: This writeup includes information that may lessen your enjoyment should you get a chance to play in Rise of Ralios.

Aruzban Ironarm

Wind Lord of Orlanth Rex
King of Delela
Nairdaini tribe, Voshfrei clan

For years I had been fighting the trolls of Halikiv and recently the troll-loving followers of Duke Rainard of Naskorion. The Lankoring seers prophesied at my birth that trolls would be my bane, and now Delela is surrounded by them and their allies. I went to Kustria seeking aid, both mundane and mystical, to protect my people from the Darkness.

I set out to form a Lightbringers' Ring, to quest into the Heroplane to seek a source of salvation for Delela, the Orlanthi and the whole of Ralios. I was determined that Orlanth would not be represented by a sorcerer or Arkati, thus I viewed myself as an excellent candidate for the role. I knew that Olbron Maze, Lawspeaker of the Ajim tribe would be an excellent choice for the role of Lankoring. Asvak "Mouth of Delela" was a reasonable choice for that drunken bum Eurmal; well at least he acted the part.

In Kustria I soon recognised the other true Orlanthi, their fierce woad pronounced their bravery, the symbols strongly declaring their allegiance. King Kocholang of Lankst with his new champion Trokatan Who-Saw-the-Lightning, Harmast the Traveller, Born with Two Spears In Hand (a hsunchen wanderer), Olbron Maze and Asvak; who was already drunk. I quickly persuaded Olbron and Asvak to join with me, although Asvak required the promise of more beer to gain his support. After exchanging greetings with my fellow king and listening to the, expensive, offers of weapons from a dwarf I set off to search for my fellow Lightbringers.

A calm, gentle voice attracted my attention. Eronia "The Healing Hand" requested my aid for the White Lady. Orlanth would always strive to help Chalana, so I agreed to buy her the wagon she wanted to convert into a mobile hospital. She in turn agreed to join my Ring for the good of the land.

A woman with the dark robes and white face of mourning demanded wergeld for her cousin. I could not remember killing him and could not determine his proper price, so I gave my word that I would investigate the matter.

I found that Born with Two Spears In Hand, while a simple man, had a brave heart. He was not afraid to embark on a perilous quest to save the land, even though he did not fully understand such things. Initially, I thought that he would take the part of Flesh Man, but I was proved wrong.

Shortly afterward, I spoke with Harmast the Traveller whom I recognised as a kindred spirit; ever striving to follow Orlanth more closely. He was eager to join the quest after I told him I wanted to undertake it for the good of the land, not for my personal gain. When we discussed which role he should take he refused the place of Orlanth pointing out that he was not a king and leader, he declined that of Issaries and suggested Fleshman or at a pinch Ginna Jar. However, we both knew that he was not the right choice for She Who Unites.

Then I became involved in an attempt to unit my fellow Orlanthi and to settle the differences between the King of Lankst and the misguided ones who had fallen into the ways of sorcery and the worship of "Invisible Gods". This was doomed from the start as Kocholang was implacable in his adherence to the traditional ways and would have no truck with them, not even to form an alliance against Arkat's hordes of dark sorcerers. I abandoned this fruitless task, but not before I had met other rulers who were more concerned about the forces of the Dark. The Green Woman of Estal, Baron Uquerion of Helby and Sir Gerard de Montepeint (representing the beleaguered Aeolians of Naskorion) all agreed to ally with Delela against the growing Darkness in Naskorion.

All-the-while I was keeping a wary eye on the sinister activities of the trolls. Thus I spotted Born with Two Spears In Hand trading his pelts with them. At first I was outraged that he was dealing with Darkness, then I realised that he had little choice if he wanted to sell his goods. I also realised that this was enough for me to choose this wanderer as Issaries in my Ring as I have heard that, in other parts, Issaries is more a trader than a herald.

A short time later I witnessed him turn into a moose for the Champion of Lankst to ride in the jousting. Despite his massive steed the brave Orlanthi was dismounted by the skill and cunning of his opponent.

Then darkness cloaked the land.

I stood, sword drawn, with the massive warmth of the moose at my back. I could see nothing but the moose seemed to sense when others came near. I challenged all who approached and thus collected brave Orlanthi while keeping out the agents of Darkness. Eventually, Yelm burnt the darkness away and we released the loud breath of relief. However, now we knew that the trolls had unleashed a horror and I set about finding Ginna Jar with extreme urgency and vigour.

After a days' fruitless searching I became demoralised. I again spied the woman in mourning and resolved to right this little wrong even if I failed in my greater task. I approached her and took her before the Lawspeaker. He listened to her case and questioned her with great care, even though her tribal dialect was hard for me to understand. Olbron announced that I owed her ten cows, the wergeld for a warrior, as one of my men had slain her cousin. I felt a strangely relieved that I was not personally involved and quickly paid her all that was due.

Imagine my surprise when on receiving the money she threw off her cloak of mourning and stood revealed as Trialda of the Sacred Acres, Priestess of Ralia. I felt Orlanth's secret wind of power rise up my spine and fill my heart with joy and purpose. I had found Ginna Jar, my ring was complete!

My poor grasp of her dialect again betrayed me as she announced that she intended to become involved in a religious discussion and departed. So fast was her leave-taking that I did not have a chance to recite "Sweet Green Woman" but I took it that she would have accepted. I used Orlanth's thunderous voice to quickly summon aid and I led Harmast and several other fierce warriors, ready to do bloody battle, to defend the unity of our Ring. Imagine our embarrassment and relief when we discovered Trialda discussing marriage with her chosen man. I accepted my mistake and apologised for the interruption. Then we explained the importance of our mission, complimented the man on his good luck and escorted Trialda to the site of our departure.

The site was high on the battlements, directly under the heavens, overlooking the entire land. Sir Gerard stood as Elmal to guard what we left. We gathered our breath and magical energies, linked our hands and swore the Lightbringers' Oath. Harmast had to twist Asvak's arm to persuade him and I promised to buy him more beer. I think the latter had more effect.

The tang of power and iron filled our mouths,
Kolat brought the smell of the coming storm,
Orlanth's roiling clouds flashed bright bolts of lightning,
Urox thundered his challenge and
Valind's icy hands touched our limbs
as the sons of Umath gathered.

All the unbelievers sought shelter from the father of storms. Only true Orlanthi were left to witness as the Lightbringers stepped from the highest battlement into the Godplane.

There Harmast was revealed as Garundyer the hero of the Seven Storms. Together, we quested west and then down, deeper and deeper, past terrible trials to the gates of Hell. There we felt and awakened a presence that seemed to offer help and freedom. We were shocked to find it was Arkat the Liberator now wearing the body of Sir Gerard. We bound him with oaths on the Styx and the Unbreakable Sword, but still hearts were heavy.

Despite our misgivings we fought our way out of Hell and returned filled with the power of the storm. I used this determination to blast the faith of Surantyr apart, ripping his invisible god from him and allowing a simple moose man draw him back to the true Orlanth. This inspired the Orlanthi to start, energetically, converting the Henotheists.

Trolls too started to preach about their Black Arkat. One stood too proudly and did not cower when I approached him. I challenged him to a duel and it was accepted. When we fought he was revealed as Arkat King Troll. I hurled the power of the Storm at his Darkness, thunderbolts blasted his leaden defences. However, I was new in my powers and he had the experience of ages. He stealthily approached, while I was distracted by the clash of the elements, and dealt me a terrible blow with his black maul. My leg shattered but I ignored the pain and fought on buffeting him toe-to-toe. He shrugged off my attacks and struck again. I could not dodge his blow with my shattered leg and his maul slammed into my chest driving the wind from my lungs. I fell, his darkness filling my eyes as I began the journey to Hell. The seers were proven right.

I wandered the dark halls for what seemed like days but was but a few hours. Then I saw a peaceful white light in the distance. I approached seeking any release from the grey darkness. A calm, gentle voice, which seemed familiar bid me follow. I awakened to find Eronia ministering to my newly healed body. I arose and greeted my fellow Lightbringers who were gathered nearby.

While I had been in Hell more Arkats had appeared and together they were threatening to drag the whole land into a war of destruction, even Arkat the Liberator sought to twist his Oath. Garundyer and myself resolved that we must take responsibility and seek to rid Ralios of Arkats. We decided that we must repeat the Lightbringers' Quest again and return with Arkats' bane as Harmast Barefoot had done with Talor the Laughing Warrior.

We again gathered the Ring and quested once more. This time we had to search deeper and harder paths. The horrors were many and we found no answer. Garundyer resolved to brave the baths of Nelat as he had done once before. We lent him our strength and he emerged purified, despite this we could not find our goal. Finally, Garundyer and I swapped our roles and he led us on the strange path of the Red Goddess which he knew about from his extensive quests. We journeyed through strange realms and were defeated by the Star Bear. We met with Nysalor, the founder of the Bright Empire, with his help we tamed the Star Bear and rode it back. We confronted the Arkats who threatened to destroy us and the land, we resolved to sacrifice ourselves if necessary. Although, secretly I decided that if that became necessary I would use all my power of wind to sweep Trialda, the representative of the land of Ralios, to safety.

We seven, bravely stood before the Arkats facing certain doom and with small hope for Ralios. Then a spider descended from above and whispered something in Garundyer's ear. Arkat Chaosmonster had appeared. The other Arkats and all the peoples of the land were united in this one thing. The King of Kustria, without a sword or a crown, led the four Arkats, the seven Lightbringers, the Star Bear and the combined hosts of Ralios against Argin Terror, now revealed as Arkat Chaosmonster, and his army of abominations. There I Fought We Won.

Last updated 6 June 96 drd

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