Ralzakark



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Created On 1 October 1997
Last Updated On 1 October 1997
Copyright (c) Simon E. Phipp 1997

God-King of the Broos in Dorastor, nothing concrete is known of the being known as Ralzakark. It is generally accepted that he lived in the First Age and was one of Nysalor's Lieutenants, fighting Arkat's forces at the very end. It is not known how he escaped destruction but he did and hid himself away. During the Second Age, a group of God Learners came to Dorastor and awakened Ralzakark, not believing the stories they had heard of him. He proved every story true and enslaved his rescuers. Ralzakark then began to awaken the land of Dorastor, becoming a High King over its many inhabitants. It is thought that Ralzakark has led a Chaos Army erupting from Dorastor on more than one occasion.

In my campaign, Ralzakark is known by many titles but favours "Father of Demons, Mother of Many". His true form is not known but he manifests in several guises, normally as the Emperor, a Unicorn headed broo of great refinement and delicacy; The Monster, a huge malformed broo of disgusting tendencies, dripping with disease; Death Bringer, a Hero of Humakt and leader of the Legions of Dorastor; Spirit Master, a shaman of extraordinary power, surrounded by spirits of disease and fear; The Hidden One, a well-endowed human male Rune Lord of Orlanth and Urox, the Storm Bull. All the forms of Ralzakark share one thing in common - they never show the slightest taint of chaos. This is because Ralzakark was Illuminated at Gbaji's knee and has studied since - he is probably the most Illuminated person in Glorantha, better versed in the secrets than the Red Emperor or Godunya the Dragon Emperor.

Ralzakark is a HeroQuestor supreme, having studied the arts from Nysalor, Gbaji and Lokamayadon. In Nysalor's day he had was exposed to many cultures and their religions and partook of them liberally. He has access to many quests, from Orlanth, Storm Bull, Humakt, Ikadz, Ragnaglar Thed, Malia, Dorasta and the Seven Mothers. He has other quests from different gods. Since his re-awakening he has plundered the minds of the god learners and has Quested on his own for many things including the search for a Storm Spirit, the Bringing of Death, the Awakening of Dorasta and the Rebirth of the land. He has cleansed the wells in the Plateau of Wrath and has bound horrors away from the general population. In fact, he ranks amongst the very best of HeroQuestors, being in the same league as the Red Emperor, The Pharaoh, Jar-Eel or Sir Ethilrist. However, he has stubbornly avoided Apotheosis, preferring to be a living God-King than a powerless Hero.

Ralzakark succeeded in bringing Death to the land of Dorastor, awakening the land, restoring the Goddess Dorasta, awakening many Ancient Horrors and defeating many more. He has welded the petty peoples into a set of kingdoms which all swear allegiance to him as High King. He has created a magical land, full of wonder and mystery, with independent cultures living in harmony, truly a reflection of the Golden Kingdom once more.

Much of his efforts these days involve keeping the kingdoms in check, ensuring that they are busy fighting each other rather than turning on him. He also has to contend with the Lunars and the people of the Risklands. Life is not as simple as it used to be in the good old days.

Ralzakark's personality depends largely on which form he has taken.
The Emperor is charming, gracious, genteel, civilised, affable and pleasant.
The Demon is gross, perverse, cruel and evil.
Death Bringer is dour, grim, humourless, honourable, single-minded and fair.
Spirit Master is terrible, unhinged, unstable, violent and irrational.
The Hidden One is earthy, carnal, lustful, friendly, helpful and sly.

However, whatever form he has taken, Ralzakark is always fond of the whimsy, the unexpected - he may be the most charming Emperor one moment than bite the head of a broo that keeps pestering him the next, he may spare someone's life as the Demon and give them a magic item or power. Whatever he wants goes. He may laugh at tragedies in the theatre or weep at comedies. He is always touched by the theatrical and likes to make a grand entrance and exit. If anything, Ralzakark is larger than life and should be played to the hilt.

Ralzakark's Punishment

This is an example of how I play Ralzakark.

A PC has broken one of the Rules in Fort Wrath and has been taken by the Sword Broos for punishment. He is taken to a room caked with blood where spirits scream and weep uncontrollably.

The guards strip him as Ralzakark enters the room carrying a stick made of ebony, carved with runes and moaning softly. As Ralzakark begins to swish the rod from side to side, he explains that this is one of Ikadz' Punishment Rods and is designed to make miscreants atone for their sins through pain. The first blow would contain all the pain the target has ever felt, the second that of his parents, the third of his grandparents and so on. The pain will sear through the bones and will strip the evil from him, ensuring that next time he obeys the rules which are set out for everyone's good. As he swishes the Rod, even the Air screams in pain as it passes through. The PC feels the pain as it comes close to him.

Finally, the guards grab him and force him down onto a punishment frame where he is spreadeagled face down, unable to move.

Then one of the guards announces that Ralzakark the Merciful has decided not to punish you after all but to bless you with a child .......