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Cwurl Toran

by Mark Galeotti
and Wesley Quadros

Cwurl Toran was a hero of the Jajalorings, a champion of Jajagappa Hunter and a warrior prince of the hills. At first he was a traditionalist who did not challenge the moon and the empire, but he certainly did not embrace them. Saddened to see his people change their thoughts, they ways and their ideas, he withdrew to his hillside fastness to breed his mighty hounds and hunt in melancholy splendour.

One day he was out hunting when his hounds began to bay, but not with one of the Six Secret Notes which would suggest prey but one of the Three Unearthly Calls. He came across a glittering lunar warrior engaged in combat with a ragged bandit shaman. The air was heavy with spirits and magic, and the hounds, for all their training, would not enter the clearing. Then Toran spotted the shaman's band creeping through the woods to assail the soldier from behind. At once he ordered his pack into the attack, himself and his trusty spear OddOne at the fore. They were armed and armoured in metal and magic, but were no match for Toran and his pack. As the last one fell, his spirit howling away in Jajagappa's jaws, Toran was just in time to see the lunar soldier sever the shaman's head from his body with a slash of a glowing scimitar. The soldier was sorely wounded, though, and Toran wasted no time gathering him up and taking him to his home.

The soldier, an officer of Yanafal Tarnils called Nestor naKeretaxos, healed with remarkable speed. He and Toran shared long conversations beside the fire or on hunts in the next week, and by the time the young soldier was ready to return to his unit. Toran was at least half-convinced that the new ways were not necessarily bad. He travelled back with naKeretaxos and slowly but surely began the road that would lead to his embracing Yanafal Tarnils, the honourable warrior, the general who knows how to embrace new ways without forgetting the old. And Toran's dogs came with him: loyal, trained, thinking of the pack, they proved excellent soldiers, and over time units from Saird and beyond had their own hunting, war and scout dogs.

Physical Skills: Keep up with Pack, Hunting

Mental Skills: Breed Dog, Train Dog, Command Dog, Myths of Cwurl Toran, Treat Dog

Affinities: Dogmaster (Tireless Lope, Command Hound, Calm Hound, Summon Hound, Augment Hound)

Secret: Heroform Cwurl Toran

Worshippers: Usually Sairdic peoples, typically soldiers or the retainers of hunting or fighting aristocrats. Some cities, notably Mirin's Cross, retain Torani dog-rearers, -trainers and -handlers to provide 'dog squads' in support of the local garrison when acting as law enforcers. Sairdic units such as the Silver Shields also tend to have a number of worshippers.

Other Side: Cwurl Toran's Three-Fold Kennels are beside Yanafal Tarnils' New Fort, and his worshippers and dogs patrol and guard it and the Fields of Conflict.

Other Connections: Cwurl Toran's is a hero cult of Yanafal Tarnils.

Disadvantages: Worshippers will smell dog-like to cats of all kind. Subject to lunar cycle.

 

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October 27, 2001

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