Home Forums Glorantha Glorantha Discussions The House of Sartar, Feathered Horse Queens, and Werewolves

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  • #5289
    Profile photo of Jeff Richard
    Jeff Richard
    Keymaster

    One thing the new edition of King of Sartar (in layout now) and Coming Storm makes clear is the amount of dramatic potential between the Royal House of Sartar, the Feathered Horse Queens, and the Telmori werewolves. Like a great soap opera or a tragic Icelandic saga, these three groups are closely intertwined.

    Prince Sartar, as all know, married Eneera Tor, the first Feathered Horse Queen to become the King of Dragon Pass. They had two children, Yorastina and Saronil. We all know how Saronil went on to become the second Prince of Sartar, but it is less commonly known that Yorastina became the second Feathered Horse Queen (called “Keeps the Children”). She founded the line of horse queens that still rules the Grazelands; although their genealogy is difficult to precisely determine because it is wrapped up in religious mystery. It is known that all Feathered Horse Queens are chosen from the daughters of the previous queen – but whether “daughter” is a title or truly restricted to blood kin is unknown outside the household of the queen; some “daughters” were almost certainly sisters or cousins of the previous queen.

    Regardless, all of the Feathered Horse Queens trace their lineage to Eneera Tor and Sartar. The third Feathered Horse Queen, called “Mother of Lands”, married her cousin Tarkalor, the son of Saronil. Her granddaughter “Riches Without Tears” married King Moirades of Tarsh, who sired a daughter. It is believed that Single Matron Woman and With Bitter Heart were sisters or cousins of Riches Without Tears. Sources suggest that Reaches All, the Feathered Horse Queen that married Argrath in 1629, was the daughter of Moirades and Riches Without Tears, thus uniting the houses of Sartar, Tarsh, and the Feathered Horse Queens.

    The Telmori were also tied into this family saga. Saronil’s daughter Onelisin Cat Witch fell in love with Ostling Four Wolf, a companion of her grandfather. She gave him a son Kostajor Wolf Champion (she had previously given her husband Jostharl triplets – Minara, Rana, and Ondurisa – the “Three Sisters” of song and story). Kostajor had five sons, called the Helkos brothers, and all served the House of Sartar loyally as bodyguards. Two (Helkos and Goram) married their second cousins, Eonislara and Tarkala, the daughters of Prince Terasarin. Their wives were murdered by Lunar assassins while in the Holy Country.

    Finally, Prince Salinarg married a “wolf woman” of the Telmori and together they had three children, Harsaltar, Enothea, and Benera – the famed “Household of Death”. All died in 1602, defending Boldhome against the Lunar Empire. This close connection between the Telmori and the House of Sartar was a strange source of respect for the Sartar rulers among the tribes. The tribes feared and hated the Telmori, but the House of Sartar could command the werewolves like loyal hounds. Those tribes loyal to Sartar were not molested by the Telmori until the destruction of that House in 1602.

    #6405

    I wonder whether Helkos and Goram lived Telmori-style (in Boldhome, I would assume) or Heortling-style while the kingdom was still alive. There is little doubt that Salinarg’s wife would have lived in royal Heortling style (most of the time).

    How much acculturation would the Telmori guards accept from their leaders, and how much wolf den would Terasarin’s daughters tolerate?

    Similar questions would arise during the cohabitations of the FHQs. I suppose Moirades’ marriage had long periods of separation, but how about Tarkalor’s?

    #6407
    Profile photo of Evilroddy
    Evilroddy
    Spectator

    I may be revealing tremendous ignorance here, but I have always wondered how the House of Sartar and later Kallyr Starbrow reconciled their close alliances with the Telmori and the taint of chaos which the wolf-folk possess? Are the Telmori ambassadors all Pure-ones or were the House of Sartar and Kallyr sufficiently open-minded to overlook that annoying detail in their desire for political expediency? I use the phrase open-minded instead of illuminated because I do not wish to impune the reputations of either the Royal House or the Kheldon Queen.
    Cheers.
    Rod Robertson.

    #6409
    Profile photo of David Scott
    David Scott
    Keymaster

    Sartar: Kingdom of Heroes has all of the answers:

    Quote:
    The Telmori are werewolves, cursed to change into wolf-form every Wild Day. The Telmori are in close communication with wild wolves, and each warrior has an animal that they train with and care for, a relationship commonly called “wolf brothers.”
    Quote:
    This was a power given to our people over a thousand years ago by a god we were tricked into following, a god called Nysalor. But it turned out that this god was really Gbaji, a being of Chaos. This gift became a curse. When Wild day came, we became monstrous killers, ravening beasts with a thirst for violence found in no natural wolf.

    The curse is not chaotic, although given by a chaos being – it’s just a very powerful magical curse. Don’t forget Gbaji also cursed Kyger Litor, the trolkin curse isn’t chaotic either.

    The Urox cult also don’t react against them.

    #6412
    Profile photo of Evilroddy
    Evilroddy
    Spectator

    David:
    Wow! It never occurred to me that Gbaji’s curse would not carry the taint of chaos. My incorrect memory was that the “pure ones” had no taint but that most Telemori did manifest as chaos. I also never made the connection between the Telmori curse and the Trollkin curse. But nor did I ever attribute chaotic taint to trollkin. Now it seems so clear. Thank you for clearing that up for me. I guess it’s time to go back and retread the sources with a more critical eye.
    Cheers.
    Rod Robertson

    #6413
    Profile photo of Evilroddy
    Evilroddy
    Spectator

    After reading the discussion on this old MoonDesign page I am even more confused.
    http://moondesign.glorantha.com/forums/glorantha-discussions/purifying-telmori-take-two
    Rod Robertson.

    #6414
    Profile photo of Evilroddy
    Evilroddy
    Spectator

    And then there is this confusing analysis:
    http://glorantha.temppeli.org/digest/gd4/1997.04/2865.html
    From Dorastor Land of Doom we learn that Telmore is runically tied to the chaos rune. How is that not chaotic?
    What seemed so clear just minutes ago is no longer so.
    I hate Gbaji!
    Rod Robertson.

    #6415
    Profile photo of Jeff Richard
    Jeff Richard
    Keymaster

    Telmor’s runes are Beast and Death.

    #6416
    Profile photo of Mark Mohrfield
    Mark Mohrfield
    Spectator

    “Saronil’s daughter Onelisin Cat Witch fell in love with Ostling Four Wolf, a companion of her grandfather. She gave him a son Kostajor Wolf Champion”

    So Kostajor is a cat and a (almost)dog? Gotta be a story there.

    #6417
    Profile photo of David Scott
    David Scott
    Keymaster
    Quote:
    Gods of Glorantha (1985), The Wolfrunners (Telmori). The Wolfrunners are a tribe of nomadic hunters who worship Telmor, Father of Wolves. Each Wolfrunner has his own companion wolf, and wolves and men fight together. Werewolves are often born into Telmori families. They sided with Gbaji in the Chaos Wars, and so were cursed.

    Cursed but not Chaotic

    Quote:
    Sandy Petersen’s HeroQuest (1988 Unpublished), Telmor (Minor God) — Werewolves. Primary Rune Beast, Secondary Rune Death, Virtues Cruel, Loyal.

    No chaos here

    Quote:
    King of Sartar (1992), Their common foe was the Telmori Tribe, a werewolf-worshipping nation of humans who had once worshipped the chaos god Gbaji, and since then had been wandering the earth without peace.

    Remember that he was Nysalor at this point and so not a chaos god.

    Quote:
    DORASTOR, Land of Doom (1993) attributes the cults of Dorasta and Telmor Cults and The Path of Illumination to Sandy Petersen, Greg Stafford, Tray Bankert, & Oliver Jovanovic. And in the cult writeup of Telmor it says “Telmor’s primary runes are Beast and Motion. The rune of Chaos is also associated with the worship of those Telmori tribes whose ancestors followed Nysalor.

    It’s only in 1993 that Telmor gains a connection with the Chaos rune, and I believe that it was erroneously assigned by two other writers.

    Confusing Digest analysis (1997)

    Quote:
    Sartar Kingdom of Heroes (2009) Telmor Beast and Spirit, Ecstatic Adoration. Spirit. 5000 [Telmori tribe only] God of the Wolves, worshipped by the Telmori Werewolves. Telmor is one of the Hsunchen gods, originating in Fronela and Ralios… This was a power given to our people over a thousand years ago by a god we were tricked into following, a god called Nysalor. But it turned out that this god was really Gbaji, a being of Chaos. This gift became a curse.

    So cursed by a being of chaos, but no mention of chaos.

    Quote:
    Sartar Companion (2010) Telmori Werewolves. The Telmori are werewolves (often called “Wolfrunners”), cursed by Chaos to change into wolf-form every Wild Day (when the Red Moon is full).

    and again cursed by a being of chaos, but no mention of chaos.

    So other than Dorastor, which appears in my opinion to be wrong, They’ve never been chaotic, just cursed by a chaos being, curses are not always chaotic, like the Trollkin curse. I think the Telmori suffer from being misremembered.

    #6418
    Profile photo of Eric Vanel
    Eric Vanel
    Spectator

    Hello,
    nice topic of discussion, which is at the center of my house campaign.

    The Telmori in Sartar are almost all cursed and tainted by Chaos, as heirs of the ones who allied Nysalor/Gbaji. In my game, I developped the details of the nature of the curse. I can share it if you are interested.
    But Rod is fully right. Question remain why Sartar choosed to basically ally with them. A start of answer may be considered in previous post from Jeff. The Telmori are not Chaos creatures but creatures tainted by chaos. Sartar promised to heal them from the curse and this is why they followed him. But he failed to heal them and now his household still have the debt…

    #6419
    Profile photo of Jeff Richard
    Jeff Richard
    Keymaster

    A few comments while I work on some new material to make heroquests easier to make sense of:
    1. The Telmori are cursed by Chaos and when they turn into wolves on Wildday, Storm Bull cultists claim they are tainted by Chaos. However, there are far more adult Telmori than Urox cultists in Sartar.
    2. The Telmori were a terrible danger to the villages and settlements of eastern Dragon Pass. Sartar ended that danger by making peace between the Telmori and the surrounding tribes. The Telmori would be permitted their hunting lands, where trespass was forbidden, and would serve the House of Sartar as bodyguards and shock troops. The Telmori often hunted in other tribal lands, but did not take humans or livestock as long as the House of Sartar reigned.
    3. Sartar made that peace by giving the Telmori a new chief,Ostling Four-Wolf, a companion of Sartar’s who had four wolf brothers, knew secrets of their changing, and offered them hope of breaking their curse. No Telmori had ever seen him before but there was no doubt he was a Telmori chief. Ostling passed the leadership tests of the Telmori and ruled them for a LONG time. Ostling was quite an old man when he had his romance with Onelisin.
    4. Kostajor is the son of Ostling and of the granddaughter of Sartar. He’s also been the Telmori chief for generations. He lives in both worlds – the royal household of Sartar and in the Telmori wilds. His sons, the Helkos Brothers, did as well, but now only Helkos and Goram survive. Goram is the chief bodyguard of Prince Temertain.
    5. The House of Ostling maintain their oaths to Sartar through thick and thin. However, the other Telmori are not so bound, and as the heirs of Ostling age and their hold on the Telmori weaken, it is clear a storm is coming.

    #6421
    Profile photo of Eric Vanel
    Eric Vanel
    Spectator

    Yeah !
    this is matter for epic adventures.
    Thanks for the precisions Jeff. For sure there will be blood…

    #6422
    Profile photo of Eric Vanel
    Eric Vanel
    Spectator

    Another question:
    as the son of Ostling (not tainted by Chaos), Kostajor (and his sons)should not be tainted by Chaos neither ?

    #6423
    Profile photo of Ian Cooper
    Ian Cooper
    Spectator

    As Jeff hints, the Telmori are central figures in The Coming Storm, as the Red Cow have the Telmori as neighbors. The story of Kostajor, Helkos and Goram is a central one that the players can become involved in.

    We include a section on the Telmori, including background on the wolf people as well as write ups for the key personalities. We explain ideas like ‘wearing your skin’ and the civilized Telmori of the Telmori Royal Guard.

    That is Goram Whitefang on the front cover of Sartar, Kingdom of Heroes, front row with his back to us. You can see that as a member of the Telmori Royal Guard he wears ‘civilized’ clothing and armor, and also ‘wears his skin’ using his Telmori magic.

    We also have material on the settlers of Wuflsand within The Coming Storm.

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