The Raven

–OUT OF PRINT–

John Lawson's The Raven

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The Raven is dark, intense, and compelling. John Lawson’s second novel of the Seven Kingdoms is as intricate and disturbing as Witch Ember. Read More
Jeff Edwards, American Author’s Association

The Raven, which follows on the tail of the author’s previous novel, Witch Ember, is the riveting tale of a knight who bends under the pressures of the outside world nearly as heavily as he does of those dwelling within. Read More
D.J. Herda, American Society of Authors and Writers

Prepare yourselves for a Young Adult Fantasy that is in my opinion considerably better than Witch EmberRead More
Crystal Adkins, Book Reviews by Crystal

John Lawson uses detailed descriptions which leave nothing to the imagination. You cringe as the characters do, while they walk along the coast, and wonder with every page you turn at what the next creature is going to be and if it is as horrifying as the last. Read More
Jennifer Andrew, BookPleasures.com

Lawson’s mythical settings and storyline are at times parallel to reality, allowing the reader an outsider’s perspective of common human conflicts. War, religion, politics, race, gender, poverty: If it is an ill of man, it is likewise a concern of the inhabitants of the Seven Kingdoms. While engrossing and entertaining as a fantasy novel, it is concurrently a sociological study and a psychological thriller. Read More
Sabrina Williams, Front Street Reviews

For those who read the previous novel, Witch Ember, you have already been introduced to this mighty paladin. I found this character to be even more fascinating than I believed would be possible. Read More
Detra Fitch, Huntress Reviews

If you like more complexity in your fantasy, this would be the book to read… Read More
Kathy Martin, In The Library Reviews

Sir Guiromélans’s search for his life’s meaning while being cursed by God gives this epic meaningful depth. Read More
J. Kaye and Steve, J. Kaye’s Book Blog

The Raven is a fast-paced, unpredictable read… Read More
Kaye Trout’s Book Reviews

…a worthy complement to the original. For people who enjoy fantasy novels, this is a good one. Read More
Kevin Apgar, Kapar.com

This is an almost overwhelming dark adult fantasy steeped in a wealth of different cultures and well-imagined creatures. Read More
Sandy Amazeen, Monsters and Critics

I guarantee you won’t be able to predict what will happen a mere ten pages ahead in The Raven, let alone a hundred. This unpredictability and the gruesome, unrelenting pace of the action kept me guessing till the very end… Read More
Stuart Carter, (not to be confused with) The Truth

His work is without a doubt on my part, beyond exceptional. The scope of his imagination surpasses most of the commercial Fantasy books I’ve read. Read More
Odyssey Reviews

…the reader is pulled into a world where everything is always new and magical. Read More
Amber Chalmers, ParaNormal Romance

I can’t say enough about this book except for check it out. You won’t be disappointed. For lovers of dark fantasy or epic fantasy especially, you can’t go wrong with this series. Read More
Chris Howard, Stuff As Dreams Are Made On

What he does with his main character is traveling around the areas unrevelaved in book one and presenting an even darker aspect of his universe, which is full with grotesque details and interesting concepts that are downright creepy, if not nauseating at times. Read More
Harry Markov, Temple Library Reviews

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Prologue: Transgression

On the ice-blasted wastes of Chaos Æther, the body of Zå lay still, and the time of drawing came. Gro the first volva cast forth Her runes. “Gather round, dømmekarl,” She sighed, “and claim Thy mangild.”

First to step forward was mighty Uspak, and in man-möte He sang:

“I choose the blood-raw, iron race of Man.
I alone know the Riddle of Life.
So all that walks and crawls and flies and swims
Shall be My children, and they shall serve Man.
Rulership of this godly stead I claim.
All You create shall dwell in My domain.
All You create shall live for Man’s pleasure.”

These words angered the other ovän, but His gild once claimed could not be undone. This said, all eyes turned to grim-visaged Thunderer, He-Who-Walks-Second, but this god, His blade still wet with blood-wite, spake not.

Second to speak was Alfdis, black häxa of the night, and She sang:

“I claim the First Ones, those who own the night
And the darkness within tunnels and woods.
Queen of Strife I am. Rule of My children
Your pride may take, oh arrogant Uspak,
But vow I, never shall they give You peace.”

Thus She spake, and Uspak gnashed His teeth with rage. And still was Thunderer silent.

Then stepped forward unruly Glossy, and to Him He took the savage beasts of the wild, both those that spoke with words of knowledge and those that did not. The smallest shrew, to the greatest aurauchs, to the cruelest udyronde was His. “They shall feast upon Your land, and ravage it, and destroy Your works, greedy Uspak, and never can they be tamed by hand or word or sword.”

Greatly was Uspak angered, and still was Thunderer silent.

Then came bitter Tygg, and He claimed the right to sound the Dømme-Horn, so He may herald in the sword-storm that consumes the world and destroys the works of proud Uspak. And still Thunderer was silent.

And one-by-one, the ovän came forward and claimed Their gilds: Vigdis to claim the moon and the stars and the powers of magic, promising their secrets will torment and confound Uspak’s favored Man forevermore. Bergelmir took the fire within the earth and the mountains that rocked the land. Vasud took the bitter cold of the glacier and the darkness of the thurse. Decrepit Kolbein chose the sun and the seasons. Young Jorun and Hane chose the crafts of the hearth and the gathering of the harvest. And on and on it went.

Thus it was that Man became both most cursed and most blessed by the ovän.

And when at last all was taken, still Thunderer was silent. “What claim Ye, mighty Thunderer?” Gro asked, “What is left to You?”

“Foolish You were,” mocked proud Uspak, “For, with no reign, soon Your name will be forgotten.”

And sang at last the mighty Thunderer:

“I claim for mine the rage of the blood-wite.
Choose I, the Seven Swords of the Dømme-Ring
And the Fists who wield them and sing their tales.
Uspak may make claim to the race of Man,
But I choose to imbue their war-chaste blood
With the mad-eyed fury of the spear-storm.
May Uspak’s Man know nothing but conflict,
May he know nothing but blackened battle,
And may his hardened heart love nothing else.
The First Ones may belong to wise Alfdis,
The beasts of the wild to feral Glossy,
And fosterage of the thurse to Vasud.
The sun, moon, and seasons may not be Mine,
And I know not the words of the witch-song.
Tygg’s horn may herald the end of things-known,
And over all the world may Uspak rule,
But all who are weapon-dead shall belong to Me,
And My warriors shall bear the mark of the spear.”

Dødensögur
Manuscripts of the Thunderer Heresies

***

Rain tumbled across the wrecked terrain, drenching the shredded encampments and burgeoning forest. Rain covered the bodies of the dead, washing the blood into the ground, making tiny pools of eyes and throats. Red-stained rivers ran from gaping, angry wounds.

So many dead. The humbled army lay in the deepening mud—bodies pierced and cut and crushed—spirits having long since departed to answer to God for their sins. Its few survivors fled both the rain and the unstoppable, inhuman, unholy warriors it heralded. Churning the mud in their desperate flight, many soldiers drowned in it, trampled and crushed by their brethren. Muskets and pikes and sabers laid strewn and forgotten like cut hay.

As a weak dawn struggled to end this terrible night, one survivor wept. The Bracks of this land would call him boduus—raven—an unclean eater of the dead. In every war, the dark birds were the only true victors, for when all was over, they alone owned the battlefield. In his homeland of Ehre, he was known as a Raven—a paladin, Champion of God—black shrouded, the epitome of Medianist chivalry.

Wrapping his ermine-lined cloak tighter around him, he shuddered as the water-soaked garment chilled his skin. The ravens would feast well today.

How could such a thing happen? His eyes drifted down from the restless clouds to the new forest spreading out before him, and he stared at the sight with horrified awe. Where yesterday no trees grew, now saplings reached above the heads of men. How could the young witch have manifested such magic? How could she have summoned the storm—raised the wood—and invoked the wrath of the damned Fée? How was it that she alone destroyed his fine army?

Why was it that she chose to spare him once again? How could a Devil-condemned witch know mercy?

Slowly his face fell into his hands, and his tears were lost in the rain. His army—fine, proud, and foot-strong—lay scattered throughout those young trees. At the center, he knew, laid the ruined fortress of the victors. Come sun height, the witch and her followers would celebrate over the bodies of the fallen.

A dying man moaned nearby, pawing weakly at the trembling shafts erupting from his flesh. Already, green leaves sprouted from the arrows’ wood—another new tree, its branches reaching for the falling rain and the Fire Hell’s first morning rays. The Raven knelt, removing the silver raven’s head clasp from his throat, and spread his blood and rain stained cloak across the body. As the soldier’s breath slowed, the Raven performed the final ablutions over the body before closing the dying man’s eyes for the last time. He left the cloak over the corpse, disgusted now with what it was and what it represented, choosing instead to allow the rain to soak him through. He had no more use for it.

With a last glance back towards the forest—towards his beloved mistress, his Hells-damned nemesis, his blessed savior—he turned away and followed the remnants of his command.

***

“At least the rain keeps the flies away,” Partinial observed as he leaned out the tavern’s window and sniffed suspiciously at the Ceilbyrig air. Looking back at his morose companion, his eyes shone with good humor. “Don’t take these events with such a heavy heart, brother!” he laughed and squeezed his friend’s shoulders affectionately.

But Guiromélans was inconsolable. Glaring out at the sticky spring drizzle falling from the sky, he gritted his teeth and wished the younger Raven would just go away. How could his comrade understand his confusion? His shame? Staring into his half-sampled mug, he suddenly and impulsively threw its contents out the window and into the muddy street, narrowly missing a cursing Brackish merchant.

Partinial laughed as his eyes closely followed the lledrwr’s retreat. Laughing or not, the young knight was always looking for a fight. He was like a drawn Raven’s blade: bright, sharp, and very, very dangerous. “Forgoing the temptations of one minor sin won’t bring you any closer to salvation,” he observed, “but I suppose it’s a good start.” He shook his head as he retook his seat, “Though it’s nearly as great a sin to waste such good courmi.”

Guiromélans closed his eyes. His ship for home could not arrive soon enough. All this wretched Ceilbyrig could provide is thick courmi, watered uinom, and other foul Brackish fare. Oh, to breathe the clean air of Ehre once again. To see the golden fields of Orqueneles, and hear the laughter of its women. Perhaps, it would help him forget the laughter of one other woman…

“And what other sins must I abandon, kind brother,” he moaned, “before I can be saved? What sins have I committed to deserve such torment? What sins have I committed that the punishment must be meted out upon my own innocent men?”

Partinial clucked in surprise and leveled a stern finger at his friend. “I can only go by your word as to the events of that night. It is a shame I missed the conflict that stills brings you such shame—”

“My shame began long before the siege of that dunum…”

Partinial waved the unwelcome interruption away. “Perhaps the Ravens of my company would have helped sway the outcome, perhaps not, but you must realize, brother Guiromélans, that what occurred was merely a defeat and nothing more. Do not take it to mean that God is displeased with you. You shouldn’t be surprised that misfortune befalls noble men. Fate and fortune, both good and ill, are sown by the whimsy of God. You lost, Guiromélans. You lost a battle, nothing more.”

Surprised, Guiromélans looked at his young friend, and his eyes narrowed. “Of my legion, more than 900 men were left on the field… Not to mention all the Bracks who died. Equipment. Supplies. Money. Everything was lost.”

Partinial shook his head as he examined the remains of his drink, swirling the muddy courmi around in his mug. “And surely, the Bracks would wish to thank you for that!” he chuckled. “All that good EroBernac cannon and rifle in the hands of unwashed barbarians. Wasted! But don’t you worry about that! They’ll turn it on each other soon enough, and before a single Medianist soul feels its burn, it’ll all rot and rust in those godless lands.” He sighed, muttering into his mug as he finished his drink, “Campaigning in the Bracklands is always bad for the hardware. God has seen to that.”

“Yes,” Guiromélans nodded bitterly. “Wasted.” He leaned closer, staring hard at the other Raven. “Listen to me, Partinial. I’ve lived my life by the laws of God and the dictates of chivalry. I have practiced the Certu and modeled my actions after the Dulia and Latria. I’ve striven to lead a proud, honorable life, to leave the mark of the Median upon the world with my passing…”

Partinial nodded, stabbing a finger at him and slamming his empty mug against their table. “Noble endeavors, all of them! It is no wonder you at last became a Raven. You should be proud—”

Guiromélans winced. “No! No, you don’t understand! Everything I’ve done in my life has lead me, directed me to the day I became a Raven—”

“And not so long ago!” Partinial chirped.

“Yes,” Guiromélans agreed impatiently, irritated at the interruption, “I have worn the silver bird at my throat for less than a year—you have been a Raven longer than I—but—”

“Only by a few years!” Partinial happily admitted, “I earned the rank through the blood of my superiors and well-occasioned duels. I earned the rank through the butchery of the right men at just the right times. But you! You, on the other hand, had proven far too valuable to Duke Beaudous to promote! For you to become Raven, it meant Beaudous had to surrender his prized vassal over to the Dux Bellôrum! Victory after victory were yours until there were no more honors to laud upon you except for that of our little silver bird! And you are a Marshal of the Ravens! Such an unprecedented rank for one so new to our order is indicative of your skill, value, and achievements.”

“It is not the same,” Guiromélans protested.

“It is!”

“You don’t understand!”

“You and I,” Partinial urged earnestly, “are physicians to our ailing Medianist lands! I merely lance the boils, stabbing deeply into sickened flesh and draining the poisons. But you! You, my brother, heal the whole body! You heal the soul! We are the same, but you are much greater!”

Guiromélans shook his head. “You just don’t see! Everything I’ve done in my life has lead me, directed me to the day I became a Raven. Everything I’ve done as a Raven—everything I’ve done in the name of God and Primate Klemm and Superbus Tyrannus Valven—has brought me to—this—point.” He rapped the table with his finger for emphasis. “This failure. This defeat. What I have seen, what I have done… what I have experienced these past days at that dunum, these past weeks in Ymyl Gwland, these past years in Ehre, they have stripped me of my pride and honor. Is this the fate of a Raven? Are these the consequences of a pious life? What lessons am I to learn from what happened in that wasteland? What is the condition of my soul? When it comes time for my judgment, I would like to look God in the eyes.” He waved a hand at the window and the rain beyond, “It has still not yet stopped raining. I fear… I fear I am cursed never to see the sun again, brother.”

“Don’t worry, my friend,” Partinial assured, his hand squeezing Guiromélans’s comfortingly. “The scales will even. There is no saint without his feast day, no fallen lord without his fast. You’ve been tested by the storm. Your troops were maimed—that witch and her followers have won for now—but rest assured that when it’s over, it will be the Just that carries the day. You are Guiromélans of the Iron Fist, Vavasour of Ehre, Raven of the Seven Kingdoms, and paladin of God. Scourge of the Ehrech alfs. Slayer of demons. Brack tamer. Bane to witches and conjurers. You will see. God will smile upon the righteous.”

Guiromélans rocked back in his seat and stared blankly at the ceiling. God smiled upon the righteous? God smiled upon the righteous. He shook his head. When the fair enchantress swept the field with her power, when the rains came and the forest and its alfs erupted from the ground, when his men died and fled, whom was God smiling upon then? Was it the witch or the Raven?

His stomach clenched in a cold, hopeless fist.

***

The darkened bistro was a dank sanctuary where faces and pasts were easily forgotten or overlooked. How many like these has Guiromélans visited these past months? How many has he visited since he fled his beloved Orqueneles, when news of his failure finally caught up with him? When proof of his failure was shown to all within the hallowed glory of Peiné Païen? When his theft was discovered? His callused hands ran across his face before he buried it in them, alternating between fits of drunken moans and sobs of sorrow. However many, it seemed, he hasn’t visited enough. The fires of shame still burned brightly, no matter how much drink he used to extinguish them.

Outside, a harsh Low Summer storm moaned through the tight, muddy streets, lashing out at þiuda and ritter alike. The heavy bistro shuddered beneath the thunder, and its coarse occupants murmured quietly with each gust and crash. Every time the door opened, rain and wind followed the struggling pedestrians into its shelter. Cursing in their thick Low Muttese, patrons shrugged their shoulders against the unwelcome invasion and protected their drinks until the door closed again.

A young boy, perhaps of Dedication age, worked his way cautiously through the drinkers. Guiromélans watched him remotely, casually wondering what kind of dark trade he was plying with these rough customers.

Suddenly, the bar’s andbahts shoved Guiromélans roughly as he slammed a freshened stein on his table. “Ü-Vhat ist this?” he sneered in broken EroBernac. “Ü-Þu weeping like a little barn? Weis serve only männer here!”

Guiromélans only smiled at the bartender and pretended not to understand the insult. “Yes,” he said, “Yes, you are correct, of course.”

The bartender’s EroBernac might have been poor, but Guiromélans’s Low Muttese was even worse. The andbahts has been itching to pick a fight with the Raven all night—there was something about Guiromélans’s cosmopolitan attire and Ehrech accent that seemed to anger the big Mut—and it seemed Guiromélans finally looked drunk enough for him to risk it.

As the Mut’s eyes narrowed angrily, Guiromélans’s hands gratefully embraced the new mug of weißbier. Just as he prepared to raise it to his lips, the andbahts’s beefy hand slammed down over the top. Guiromélans stared morosely at the heavy appendage, the beer’s precious, sweet head oozing up between the stained fingers.

Several of the bartender’s friends were slowly rising from their seats.

The Raven smiled down at the hand and the mug. This might be just the thing he needed to clear his head.

The andbahts leaned down to glare at Guiromélans. “! Ü-Þu are afháimeis? Ü-Far from home, jái? This bier ist extra. 10 marks. Þu pay izwar marks, fremder, und þu leave. Afleiþan! Now!”

Guiromélans nodded slowly as he surveyed the bar around him. The andbahts probably outweighed him by nearly 5 stone. Another five Muttese stood ready to beat and rob him, while the rest of the bar appeared merely interested in watching it happen.

The young boy—Guiromélans couldn’t tell if he was Muttese or not, though his hair was braided like a Brack’s—has retreated to the door and watched him with frightened interest.

Guiromélans sighed. The timing was opportune. This wretched fishing village has lost its appeal on him—as has its weißbier—and it seems he has lost his appeal on it as well. It was about time he moved on. In all likelihood, Partinial would be arriving here soon, and it would be a good idea if he were long gone before then. Opening his long jacket, he reached in to retrieve his money.

Suddenly, the bartender swallowed and paled, and his friends quickly found new distractions elsewhere. Even in the bistro’s dim light, Guiromélans’s silver Raven’s brooch shone brightly. The grips of his saber and pistol were worn with frequent and familiar use. Slowly, the andbahts removed his hand from Guiromélans’s drink and stepped away.

Afléts!” the frightened bartender gasped. “Many pardons, ritter! Ik meant offense.”

Drunken as they were, Guiromélans’s steely eyes bored into the andbahts’s. “Tell me something, frijónds,” he asked, “Are you a pious Medianist?” Slowly, he rose, forcing the larger Mut to take a step back, and took an experimental smell of the air. “I never can tell with these Muttese backwaters. You look of Hente blood. Is there any trace of Thunderer heresy within you?”

The bartender’s eyes widened with sudden understanding. “, , honorable Raven!” he stammered, quickly making the sign of the Median before him. “Ik am good Medianist! Ik love God! Praise Hoël! Praise Guiot!”

“Hmmn… I wonder.”

“Ist true! Ist true!”

Guiromélans studied the sweaty face of the nervous Mut. Pulling a silver artifact from his cloak, the Raven glanced at it briefly before returning it to his pocket. Did the andbahts tell the truth? Guiromélans smiled. Of course he did. Only a fool would lie to a Raven. He produced a silver groschen from his purse and held it up for the man to see. “20 marks. For your beer, for your troubles, jái?”

The relieved Mut exhaled explosively and bowed deeply as he gratefully received the coin. “Awiliudón, Raven! Þu are wise! Þu are just! Hail Valven! God bless þu, ritter.”

Guiromélans’s smile froze and then faded. “God bless? Perhaps,” he muttered. Slowly, he reached down and took up his new stein. Blowing off its crushed head, he saluted the andbahts grimly before taking a deep drink. “Prost.”

Out of the corner of his eye, he saw the boy slip out of the bar.

***

Muttese history has been turbulent and combative, and scars of countless battles marred the countryside. It was an especially dangerous place, as compared to peaceful Ehre. Even this small village has been touched by the violence of the Endless Wars. Its buildings were simple, undecorated, and relatively new. Structures were built quickly to replace the ones destroyed before. Structures were built with the expectation that they would soon be toppled again. Despite the darkness and rain, Guiromélans could see the stains of soot and ash upon some walls. This small village, like so much of the Duchy, has been put to the torch as recently as a couple years ago, perhaps sooner.

Before too long, some upstart baron or count would come rampaging through here again, intent on pursuing his goal of the Duchy’s throne—perhaps even the seat of the Superbus Tyrannus itself—but more likely, he would merely meet an ignominious death. This village would have to make the choice to follow him or resist, knowing that the right decision might only delay the razing by a couple months.

Guiromélans shouldered through the rain, making his way down towards the docks. The mud sucking at his boots was slimy and smelled of fish, and he was reminded all too vividly of other rains and other mud. He gritted his teeth and sighed. Oh, how he hated these provincial pits of fish guts and booze. He was more at home in the field on campaign or, perversely, within the courts of royalty. He found comfort only in the embrace of the enemy or the arms of some sweet-smelling sellâria.

Sellâria…

He shook his head violently to drive away the unwanted, unbidden memories.

Maybe one of the fiskskips could take him further down the coast. Better yet, perhaps a jaght or steamer has arrived during the day? Such vessels might afford him some modicum of comfort.

As he slid down the narrow street, drunk as he was, he was still acutely aware of the company he’s attracted. Two men sat in the shadows outside the bistro, their bodies heavy with muscle and weapons; now they kept pace with him, doing their best to remain quiet and unseen. The boy from the bar was out there too, following him at a distance, peering at him from around corners and out of alleyways. They’re probably working together. Guiromélans wondered when they’d make their move. He wondered what exactly they’re after. Money? Murder? Infamy? Disappointed by his encounter with the bartender, he almost looked forward to finding out.

He stopped abruptly when the docks came into view. Among the villager’s stinking fiskskips, a new ship lay beached on the narrow belt of sand. Its long, slender lines looked fast and predatory. The Raven hesitated as his drunken mind struggled to digest what he saw. The ship’s masts flew the flags of no nation or master. A privateer? Pirates? If so, its crew must have been desperate to risk landing here. The Muttese were not known for their hospitality towards strangers, especially outlaws.

He scanned the storm-blackened horizon. Although the conditions at sea must be far worse than they were ashore, the crew still appeared to be in a hurry to return to them. Even at this late hour, in this weather, repairs were quickly being performed across the ship. Broad of chest and bundled in heavy cucullus against the weather, sailors scurried across its decks and along its sides. Its two masts looked sloop-rigged for speed, but its rigging hung in snapped and tangled confusion. Scraps of sail still rattled in the wind, and black smoke streamed from a damaged exhaust funnel.

Guiromélans considered this and wondered about those two men following him. Could they be connected? It was likely.

Fráuja?” Without warning, the boy materialized in front of him. “Þu fragiban… er… alms, fráuja?”

The boy crouched in the mud at Guiromélans’s feet, braced against the howling wind and stinging rain. One hand tugged lightly at his trouser leg, the other extended hopefully. Now closer, Guiromélans could better see the boy’s rain-moistened face. He was a handsome child, perhaps of Palpi or EroBernac stock, but his eyes were tired and old. Guiromélans shook his head at the boy’s broken Palpi-accented Low Muttese. “I speak Palpi, child,” he answered kindly.

He smiled again at the boy’s look of surprise. How could a stranger have guessed his homeland, eh?

“What kind of sire would let his son out in a night such as this?” he asked, letting a 20 mark silver piece fall from his hand. “Visiting bistros? Where is your father, boy?”

Catching the coin in midair, the child leered up at Guiromélans, the look in his eyes suddenly very calculating. “Me father?” he hissed with a burr as thick as any Brack’s. “Me ater comes soon enough, yäh?” With only the slightest glance past Guiromélans’s shoulder, he scampered away.

Without hesitating, Guiromélans turned and drew his cavalry saber, his drunkenness making his movements clumsy and premature. His draw cut was early, missing his target by a wide margin, but it succeeded in surprising the two Bracks approaching from behind. The nearer of the two dropped the sap he had held ready.

Now face-to-face, the two sides regarded each other briefly. The two Bracks were large and stocky, the countless braids in their hair and beards hanging miserably in the rain. Upon their foreheads and backs of their hands, they bore the tattoos of Suptra the Traveling Goddess and Her son, Aelle. They’re sailors, though by the number of rings in their ears, they hadn’t yet traveled through the Fists of Gock.

Guiromélans glanced at the ship under repair on the beach and then back at the two Brackish sailors. He smiled sadly. “A press-gang?” he sighed. “This is a Gock-damned press-gang?”

The closest Brack screwed up his face with embarrassment and anger. “Yäh, boduus, but na longer, uh? All had do was stay turned and take a nice nap. But nage, has act all smart-like and make trouble.” He shook his head at his fallen sap. “Now we’re goin’ have hurt , uh?”

The two sailors drew their enormous spatha broadswords and stepped forward, separating slightly to give Guiromélans two targets to worry about. Without preamble, the closest, largest of the two leaped at him, twirling his heavy blade with frightening speed. Not daring to meet such a heavy attack directly, Guiromélans sidestepped and parried, sending the sailor sprawling past him into the mud. Turning immediately to meet the next Brack, he saw him only gesture before something unseen struck him in the face, throwing him hard onto his back.

Guiromélans didn’t pause to get his bearings. Even before his head has cleared, he instinctively rolled aside, narrowly avoiding the blade of a descending spatha. As he rose, he cut backwards and smiled with satisfaction as his blade bit into muscle and bone. The larger Brack howled in agony as he fell backwards. Before he has even hit the ground, Guiromélans wheeled his saber around and thrust it down through his breastbone.

Standing, he calmly placed his boot on the Brack’s throat and jerked his sword from the body. Blood pumped up from the wound, soaking already sodden clothes. Watered by the rain, it quickly mixed into the mud.

Carefully flicking the thick mud from his ruined clothes, Guiromélans turned and glared at the second Brack. Not quite as rash as his partner, the sailor stood ready, making low, rhythmic cutting motions with his sword. He didn’t look frightened, but he didn’t have that cocky expression any longer either.

Guiromélans slipped forward and attempted to thrust past the Brack’s defenses. The sailor parried easily and gestured again. Another fist, invisible yet still very solid, sent Guiromélans staggering backwards again. He heard the gristle of his nose crack and grind, and his teeth rattled in his mouth. Blood began to flow from both.

Even as he dabbed at his abused face, realization dawned, followed quickly by anger. A witch. A WITCH! The Brack was a filthy, Gock-damned sorcerer! What kind of cruel jokester was God to send up yet another witch to face him, so soon after his last defeat? As he nursed his abused jaw, his vision reddened and rage darkened his heart.

With the nature of his enemy revealed, he could see the tiny ticks and gestures that betrayed his summoning. He could smell the magic oozing from the Brack, as if it was garlic embrekton. His Raven’s instincts kicking-in, Guiromélans leaped to his feet with a roar of fury and charged.

The Brackish stone-summoner gestured again, but Guiromélans was ready for it this time. He ducked left, letting the spell discharge uselessly above him, and stabbed with his saber. The tip of his blade snaked around the spatha and buried itself into the man’s forearm. The sailor gasped and jerked away, and Guiromélans closed immediately, plowing bodily into the smaller man.

The two foes tumbled to the ground together, Guiromélans rose sitting astride the Brack and rolling him onto his stomach. The desperate sorcerer summoned repeatedly, but Guiromélans endured the blows and burns as he steadily pressed the Brack’s face deeper and deeper into the mud. “Die, Hells-spawn,” he hissed into the rain. “I send your soul into Gock’s embrace.”

Bubbles rose up from the thick ooze. The stone-summoner’s struggling slowed and eventually stopped.

Gasping with effort, Guiromélans drew his knife and slit the dead Brack’s garments down the back. Spreading open the clothes, he stared down at the bared body. He found what he was looking for on the Brack’s side, just above his hip, encircled by the tattoos of the dead man’s clan and gods. Slipping the tip of his knife into the skin, he got to the work of cutting into muscle.

***

Minutes later, Guiromélans held under the rain a tiny, blackened pea—what, to untrained eyes would appear to be a pebble of charcoal or piece of burnt flesh—but Guiromélans knew what it was. He understood the dangers it posed. He understood the threat to God it represented.

Why would God lead him to such an opponent now? Was God mocking him as He did in the Bracklands? Guiromélans’s fist clenched around the tiny, black stone. No. Perhaps not. Could this be an opportunity to redeem himself?

Realization dawned. Perhaps his punishment was at last over? Perhaps the time of his penance has begun?

Guiromélans kissed the bloody fist gripping the witch’s stone and made the sign of the Median. He understood. He will honor God. He will praise His name and follow the Word of the Prophets. He will face evil in all its forms and defeat it. Heretics, witches, demons, Fée, all will fall by his sword.

As a Raven within the safety of the Seven Kingdoms, he proved a miserable failure. Such was not his calling. Saint or fallen lord, he shall serve God.

Guiromélans looked down at the beached privateer and the sailors struggling to make repairs in the storm-swept surf.

No. He was meant to take the battle to other lands.

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Glossary show/hide

World of the Seven Kingdoms

Abaisd Territories:  Smallest of the Seven Kingdoms, consisting of the 12 Palpi city-states.  Sometimes considered a territory of the EroBernd Empire.

Abyss Ocean:  Endless ocean west of the Duchies of Ehre and Mut.

Adelelmus of Háimóþli:  Medianist saint and disciple of Pennenc.

adgarios:  (Brackish) Invoker. Usually refers to a sorcerer.

Aelle:  Brackish god of sailors.  Son of Suptra.

Æther:  (1) Raw material from which the universe was formed.  (2) The world in its youngest form.

Af-vapnan:  Muttese village within the Weaning Shores.  Known for its tolerance of Thunderer heresies.

afdáuthjan:  (Low Muttese) Kill, execute.

afgudei:  (Low Muttese) Ungodliness, heresy.

afguþs:  (Low Muttese) Godless, impious.

afháimeis:  (Low Muttese) Far away from home.

Afleiþan!:  (Low Muttese) Go away!

afléts:  (Low Muttese) Forgiveness.

afron:  (Palpi) Fool, foolish.

ahrounoi:  Member of the Tribe of Fée.  Also known as dwarves.  Waged war with the Drungi of Háimóþli during the Wars of Empty Horror over 1000 years ago.

aíhvatundi:  (Low Muttese) Thornbush.

áiz:  (Low Muttese) Brass coin used within the Duchy of Mut.  One quarter a copper mark.

ala:  (Therm) Flow of Fate.

alf:  Member of the Tribe of Fée.  Plant-like race currently warring with the Duchy of Ehre.

Alfdis:  Black häxa of the night.  Söderkarl goddess ofthe Fée.

All-Thing: (Söderkarl) Annual gathering of the greaterherath community. Time of judgment, mediation, weregeld, and theaddressing of issues deferred from lesser Things.

anâhita:  (Ulbandi) Void of impurity.  Epithet.

andbahts:  (Low Muttese) Bartender, servant.

Anerin’s Fort:  Northwestern most of the 12 Palpi city-states.  Site of a pivotal battle during the fifth Brackish invasion.

anghredadun:  (Brackish) Heretic, infidel, athiest.

anîlibus fâbellîs:  (EroBernac) Old wives’ tales.

anima:  (Dëstör’erde) Spirit within all things, living or not.

Anti-Prophet:  Title given to Superbus Tyrannus Serli after hedenounced his father, Guiot, and claimed himself the true Prophet ofGod.

Anwar Clobyn, Tribe of:  One of the great tribes, consisting of the centaurs and beastmen.

Aquilaleon:  Capital of the EroBernd Empire.  Crown of the Seven Kingdoms.  Seat of the current Superbus Tyrannus.

ard-vitchoor:  (Brackish) Ultimate bastard.

arrow-storm:  (Söderkarl) Battle.

asp:  (EroBernac) Knight piece in a castles game.  (Ulbandi) Sacred knight of the Dragon Goddess.

asphodel:  Pallid, ghostly flowers said to grow in the underworld.

ater:  (Brackish) Father.

atu:  (Therm) Rhythm of life and death.  Fate.

aurauchs:  Species of gigantic cattle, native to the regions around the Southern Territories. Standing at more than 6’ at the shoulder, they are known for their strength and ferocity.  Travel in groups called droves.

awiliudón:  (Low Muttese) Thanks.

axe-age:  (Söderkarl) Time of battle, war, or other strife.

axe-sitting:  (Söderkarl) Sitting cross-legged.

bagaudas:  (Brackish) Bandit, brigand.

banda-drapa:  (Söderkarl) War record, saga.

banesman:  (Söderkarl) Enemy.

bareserkr:  (Söderkarl) Berserker.  Literally, “bare-shirt.”

barn:  (High Muttese) Girl.

Bàs:  Brackish God of the underworld, ruler of the luct-marvos tribe.  Guardian of forests.

Battle of Anerin’s Fort:  Final battle of the fifth Brackish invasion.  In 54 GA, EroBernac armies led by Dux Bellôrum Anerin defeat the Brackish armies of Rixueramos Eneyd, resulting in the occupation of Ymyl Gwland and the Palpi Penninsula by the EroBernd Empire.

Battle of Eyjafjord:  Conflict where Superbus Tyrannus Berengar conqured the cythths of Ledus, Fornjotnr, and Frostthing.

Beaudous of the Black Shield, Duke:  Current Duke of Ehre.

beesa:  Member of the Tribe of Masks.  Shape-shifting enemy of Man.

Berengar, Duke:  Duke of EroBernd and Superbus Tyrannus who established the Southern Territories in 132 GA.

bidjan:  (Low Muttese) Beg, plead.

Black Templars:  Elite knights in service of Duke EroBernd of the Ordohorht, the first Ravens, following the teachings of Saint Bredbeddle.

Bleeding Maidens:  Muttese port city.

blinds:  (Low Muttese) Blind.

blodprøve:  (Söderkarl) Blood test.  Challenge made during a sword-dance.

blood feud:  Formalized Söderkarl familial warfare, typically initiated by an insult, assault, or larceny.  Rarely includes women and children, but can result in the complete extermination of an entire family or clan.  Can be settled with a weregeld through mediation in a Thing.

blood-reeds:  Fleshy reeds, known for their sharp blades and bloody flavor.

blood-wite:  (Söderkarl) Guilt of murder.

bloody-eagle:  (Söderkarl) Ritual sacrifice of a prisoner or criminal to the Thunderer.  Victim is cut along either side of the spine, the ribs are turned inside-out, and the vitals are removed.

bna:  (Brackish) Woman.

boduus:  (Brackish) (1) Raven.  (2) Racial epithet for all non-Bracks.

böndi (pl. bönder):  (Söderkarl) Bonded man.

Boria:  Dëstör’erde first woman, daughter of Taibhsear.

bo’s’n:  Boatswain.  Naval officer in charge of ship operations and crew management.

böth:  (Söderkarl) Hut, house.

braca:  (Brackish) Leather pants.

Brack:  Native of the Bracklands.

Brack/Brackish:  Language of the Bracks.

Bracklands:  Undefined territory north of the Palpi Peninsula, and the homeland of the Brack Tribes.  Currently experiencing rraakk incursions in the northwest.

Brand of Uspak:  One of the Thunderer heresies, practised primarily by the ruling classes.

bratos:  (Brackish) Thanks.

Bredbeddle of EroBernd:  Medianist saint and disciple of Hoël.  The first Raven.

Bredbeddle’s Crusade:  In 24 HA, the warrior saint’s effort todrive the asps from the Seven Kingdoms lands.

breibançon:  (Ehrech) Hired killers.

bri’ua:  (1) Bridge.  (2) Form of magic derived from the worship of gods.  Also known as indirect or oväder magic.  (3) One of the six suits in the maru-catu deck.

Broken Sword:  Ensign of the Southern Territories.

Brûler:  Small town on the southern coast of Ehre.  Known for its steam geysers and hot springs.

brythwch:  (Brackish) Storm, tumult, groan.

buachar:  (Brackish) Bullshit.

Burning Time:  (1) Holy day recognizing the battle between God and the Devil, occurring on the Winter Equinox of Hard Winter.  The holiest day of the Medianist calendar.  (2) Act of burning witches.

búzas:  (Therm) Wild goats.

bwyell:  (Brackish) War ax.

bygth:  (Söderkarl) Community of steads.  Ruled by a rig-jarl.

bygthir:  (Söderkarl) Group of bygths.  Ruled by a thane.

caballos:  (Brackish) Workhorse.

cabeiri:  Member of the Tribe of Fée.  Peaceful relatives of the ahrounoi.  Also known as gnomes.

caddos:  (Brackish) Saint.

Cærimonia:  City in the EroBernd Empire, and seat of the Medianist church.

cäll:  (Brackish) Wise.

calliacus:  (Brackish) Testicles.

cantref:  (Brackish) Collection of commotes, usually ruled by a rixueramos.

capalus:  Breed of great cat common in the Bracklands.  Travel in groups called prides.

captain:  Commander of a sailing vessel.  In the Seven Kingdoms navies, the most powerful man on board.  On pirate vessels, his authority can be countermanded by the quartermaster.

caragus:  (Brackish) One who possesses a stone and practices sorcery.  Also known as a stone-summoner, sorcerer, witch, or wizard.

Cassibodua:  Brackish goddess of ravens and evil.  Brackish Devil.

CastitasDecus:  Capital of the Duchy of Ehre.

Cathru-Gaoshem:  City on the Ulbandi coast.

Cathubodua:  (Brackish) Member of the Medianist Order of the Raven.

caturix:  (Brackish) Warlord.

cauaros:  Species of giant, and member of the Tribe of Fée.  Travel in family units known as crashes.

Ceilbyrig:  Largest city and primary port of Ymyl Gwland.

cenobite:  Monk living in a monastic community.

centaur:  (Synesi) Member of the Tribe of Anwar Clobyn.  Distinctive for their apparent mix of human and animal attributes.

Certu:  Rarified Word of the Medianist God.  The collected teachings of the Medianist Prophets and saints.

chamarling:  (Söderkarl) Chief officer in the household of ayngvi, hersir, or thane.

chief mechanic:  Officer in charge of the operation, maintenance, and repair of a ship’s engines.

cing:  (Brackish) Brackish knight.

circle magic:  (EroBernac) Form of magic derived from the invocation and control of spirits and demons, also known as dusios or runa magic.

cla:  (Brackish) Sick person, invalid.

Cliffs Reach:  Southernmost of the 12 Palpi city-states.  A major trade-center.

cloart:  (Brackish) Coward.

coept-inigena:  (Brackish) Kept-woman.

commote:  (Brackish) Community of dunums, ruled by a rix or rixueramos.

connus:  (Palpi) Dirty, unclean.

Cortegiania:  (EroBernac) Art of EroBernac courtiership. Art ofcourtiership, chivalry, and gender roles, as defined by Hoël.

Cortesia:  (High Muttese/Mynyddi) Art of courtly behavior andchivalry, as defined by Pennenc.

cottar:  Rural peasant.

courmi:  Brackish beer.

Courts of Love:  Party game of logic, manners, and courtly love.  Popular among Seven Kingdoms wellborns.

cross-staff:  Device used by ships’ navigators to determine latitude.

cuall:  (Brackish) Fool, foolish.

cucullus:  (Brackish) Cloak.

Curaco:  Dëstör’erde god of war, peace, and blacksmithing.  Origin of iron.

Curaco’s Anvil:  (Muttese) Isolated rainstorm, often generating copious rainfall, thunder, and lightening.  Common in the Bracklands and Ulbandus but rare further south.

cythth:  (Söderkarl) Kingdom.  Ruled by a yngvi.

Darkblood:  Member of the Tribe of Night.

dava:  (Therm) Village.

death-mead:  (Söderkarl) Death meadow.

Dedication:  Turning over of the responsibilities of raising a child to the Medianist church.  Essentially the adoption of a child by the church.  Held on the Harvest Festival.

degkarls:  (Söderkarl) Dough-men. Soft, inexperienced, orunprepared soldiers. Typically, any soldier not of Söderkarl or Muttesestock.

Delphina of Háimóþli:  Medianist saint and disciple of Pennenc.

dentu:  (Therm) Clan, tribe.

Desa:  Therm goddess of life and death. Keeper of the tranas and didzas.

Desecrated Territories:  Uninhabited region east of Mynydd.  Before the Maggot Storm, it was known as Dëstör, inhabited by the Dëstör’erde.

Dëstör:  Lands occupied by the tribes of Dëstör’erde.  Became the Desecrated Territories with the coming of the Maggot Storm.

Dëstör’erde:  Peoples formerly occupying the lands of Dëstör, now known as the Desecrated Territories.  Largely wiped out by the Maggot Storm.

Deua!:  (Brackish) Come!

Deuos Durnus:  (Brackish) Fists of God.

Didza:  (Therm) Dance of Life, creation.

Dieudonnée of the Robais:  Fallen Lord of Stone.  Mother of the Medianist faith.  Killed by God because she bore a stone.

Din Guayrdi:  Eastern province of the EroBernd Empire.

diptych:  (1) 2-leaved hinged tablet that can be folded together to protect writing on its waxed surfaces.  (2) The picture or series of pictures (as an altarpiece) painted or carved on two hinged tablets.

dire wolf:  Breed of southern wolf.  Growing to nearly 200 lbs in weight, they are slower and heavier than the grey or timber varieties.

Disir:  (Söderkarl) Guardian spirits, female honorific.

Docile Kingdoms:  Brackish tribes occupying lands northwest ofEhre.  Not hostile to the Seven Kingdoms, but too far away for Medianistoccupation.  Raided frequently by rraakks and northern barbarians.

dolâbra:  (Synesi) Pickaxe.

Dømme-Horn:  (Söderkarl) Horn to be sounded at the end of the world.

Dømme-Horn, Cult of the:  Söderkarl doomsday cult, involving the worship of Tygg.  One of the Thunderer heresies.

dømme-ring:  (Söderkarl) Place of human sacrifice or blood pact.

Dømme-Ring Fulthark:  One of the Thunderer heresies.

dømmekarl:  (Söderkarl) Witnesses and judges of a Thing.

dona:  (Brackish) Wife.

donios:  (Brackish) Husband.

dracontia:  Gemstone, considered evil by Medianists.

dracunculus:  Miniaturized versions of full dragons.

dracônigena:  (EroBernac) Dragon-born.  Gock-spawned.  Evil.

drakontion:  (Synesi) Kind of grain.

Dræk-Gokh:  Dëstör’erde Mother Dragon of Life.

draugr:  (Söderkarl) Ghul.

drayal zandbed:  Race of semi-intelligent, predatory sea creatures.  Although almost completely unknown in the Skudd Sea, they are greatly feared by sailors.

dreng:  (Söderkarl) Boy.

Drungi:  (1) Native from the lands currently occupied by the EroBernd Empire and Duchies of Mut and Ehre.  Now very rare.  (2) Language of the Drungi.

dubi-gnatos:  (Brackish) “Black-born”.  Stillborn, miscarried.  Demon.

dudu’m:  (Dëstör’erde) Melons.

Duelers:  Two of gæsum card in a maru-catu deck.

Dulia:  Veneration and worship of Medianist saints.

dumas:  Themoch.

dunum:  (Brackish) Village, castle, keep.  Ruled by a cing or rix.

dusios:  (Brackish) (1) Demon.  (2) Form of magic derived from the invocation and control of spirits and demons.  Also known as circle or runa magic.  (3) Any non-human race, such as alf, rraakk, or cauaros.

Dux Bellôrum:  Supreme commander of the armies of the Superbus Tyrannus.

Eanfleda of EroBernd:  Medianist saint and disciple of Kahedin.

Edgar, Count:  Current ruler of Ledus County.  Appointed by Superbus Tyrannus Valven.

Ehre, Duchy of:  One of the Seven Kingdoms.  Currently at war with the alfs of the Raucholle Mountains.

Ehrech:  (1) Native of the Duchy of Ehre.  (2) Language of the Duchy of Ehre.

Einfætingaland:  Territory south of Ledus and Frostthing Counties.  Land of monsters.

Einheriar:  (Söderkarl) Warriors fallen in battle.  Origin of the bareserkrs.  Said to have perfected the art of combat in life and were known to engage in battle completely naked.  Asps.

einvigi:  (Söderkarl) Free-for-all duel.

Ekunaver of Mut:  Medianist saint and disciple of Hoël.

elemental magic:  (EroBernac) Form of magic derived from the worship and control of the elements.

elfajzott:  (Mynyddi) Idiot, moron.

Elivagar:  Great river of ice that separates the Southern Territories from the lands of the extreme south.

embers:  (EroBernac) Sources of sorcerers’ power.  Also known as stones.

embrekton:  Thick mixture of lard, halki meal, and bits of meat, fried over an open flame.  A Brackish delicacy.

Empyrean Median:  The “Mirror of the Soul,” a relic of Saint Bredbeddle, onced displayed in the cathedral of Peiné Païen in Castitasdecus, now missing.

enceintes:  Fortifications enclosing a castle, town, or dunum.

Endless Empire:  Nation-state established by the Prophet Hoël upon the creation of the Orthodox Medianist church.  Encompassed the territory now occupied by Ehre, Mut, and the EroBernd Empire.  Destroyed by the Plague of Lies.

Endless Wars:  Period of wars, battles, and petty feuds waged between the lesser political entities within the Seven Kingdoms.  Has continued for over 340 years, ever since the collapse of the Kingdom of Purity.

Equoranda:  (Brackish) Frontier.  Border between the Bracklands and the territory of the rraakks.

ergi:  (Söderkarl) One who behaves in an unmanly manner.

EroBernac:  (1) Native of the EroBernd Empire.  (2) Language of the EroBernd Empire.

EroBernd, King:  Last king of the Kingdom of Purity, slain during the first war between the Duchies of Ehre, Mut, and the EroBernd Empire.

EroBernd Empire:  (1) One of the Seven Kingdoms.  The current seat of the Superbus Tyrannus.  (2) Name for the former Kingdom of Purity.

Es’a:  Drungi god of the sea.

Ešhar, Tribe of:  One of the Great Tribes, consisting of all races considered “undead”.  Vulnerable to silver.  Also known as the Tribe of Night.

êtqra:  (Drungi) To complete.  (EroBernac) Amen (as an expression of faith).

eycharistisi leaves:  Large, bay-shaped leaves consumed for their narcotic effects.  Normally dried.  Highly addictive and contraband in the Seven Kingdoms.  Also known as bay leaves.

Eyes of God:  (1) Place of eternal punishment for demons, heretics, and fallen Medianists.  Also known as the Hells.  (2) The sun and the moon.

fadir:  (Söderkarl) Father.

Faírguni:  Southern land east of the Skudd Sea.  Joined with Vis’I Qira to form Katsarloki.  Occupied by the Duchy of Mynydd.

Fallen Lords:  Anti-saints.

fästning:  (Söderkarl) Fortress, keep.

Feast of Mother Night:  (Söderkarl) Thunderer celebration held during the winter equinox.

Fée, Tribe of:  Largest of the Great Tribes, including races such as the alfs, ahrounoi, cauaros, and traellern.  Vulnerable to iron.

Fée tales:  Stories told by Medianist laity that convey a moralistic lesson by frightening children.  Frequently portrays Fée, Darkbloods, or other non-humans as antagonists.

fegyver:  (Low Muttese) Gun, pistol.

feiging:  (Söderkarl) Coward.

fell-böth:  (Söderkarl) Hide-covered hut.

fflam:  (Brackish) Flame.

Fijands:  Muttese village within the Weaning Shores.  Known for its tolerance of Thunderer heresies.

Fire Hell:  Sun.  Place of punishment for demons, heretics, and those who commit crimes of the flesh.

fiskskips:  (Low Muttese) Fishing ship.

Fists of God/Fists of Gock:  Straights between the Ymyl Gwland and Ehrech landmasses.  On the east is the Skudd Sea, on the west are uncharted waters of the Abyss Ocean.  Also known as the Deuos Durnus.

Fists of the Seven Swords:  (Söderkarl) First of the ovän, creators of the world.  Worshipped through the Söderkarl sword-cults.

Fitta:  Söderkarl goddess of sensual pleasure.

Flay:  City in western Ehre.  Destroyed by alfs.

flintlock:  Firearm using a piece of flint to generate sparks and discharge the weapon.  Safer than matchlocks and more reliable than wheel-locks.

forest-man:  (Söderkarl) Outlaw.

Fornjotnr County:  One of the Southern Territories.

fragiban:  (Low Muttese) Give.

fráuja:  (Low Muttese) Lord.

fremder:  (High Muttese) Stranger.

frijónds:  (Low Muttese) Friend.

Frostthing County:  One of the Southern Territories.

Futhark:  (Söderkarl) Runic alphabet.

gadómjan:  (Low Muttese) Judge, pronounce judgment, condemn.

gång:  (Söderkarl) Time.

Gaph:  Medianist monestary in the Orqueneles region of Ehre.

gars:  Earthy, gangling, dark forest spirits.

garthr:  (Söderkarl) Enclosure, yard.

Gaudin of Vis’I Qira:  Medianist saint and disciple of Guiot.Waged war with the ahrounoi during the Wars of Empty Horror.  Transformedself into a demon and was killed by God.

geirr:  (Söderkarl) Spear.

genton:  (Therm) Raw meat, food, people.

geOl:  (EroBernac) Largest log burning during the winter, saved for on the night of the Burning Time.  (Söderkarl) Winter holy day.

ghul:  Near-mindless, cannibalistic undead. Also known asdraugr.

Gimsarheim:  Northern-most port of the Southern Territories, on the border of the Weaning Shores.

Glossy:  Söderkarl god of animals and Anwar Clobyn.

Gock:  Medianist Devil.

godi (pl. godar):  (Söderkarl) Priest.  Will often be a jarl.

goodman:  (Söderkarl) Foster father.

Goort:  (1) City-state in southern EroBernd. Capital of theprovince by the same name. (2) Southern province of the EroBerndEmpire.

graney:  (Brackish) Ugly.

Great Horn, Bygthir of:  Northermost bygthir and capital of Ledus County.

Great Lords:  (Söderkarl) Gods.  Also known as ovän.

Green Season:  Middle season of spring.

Gro:  First volva.  A Söderkarl goddess.

groschen: (Low Muttese) Silver coin used within the Duchy of Mut.Worth 20 copper marks.

Guiot the Virgin:  Fourth Medianist Prophet, from EroBernd.

gully:  (Brackish) Hunting and fighting knife.

gunpowder:  Explosive chemical compound consisting of saltpetre, charcoal, and sulfur. Manufactured in uniformly-sized grains to control its burn rate.  Tends to become more unstable the further from the equator it is taken.

guþ:  (Low Muttese) God.

gwledig:  (Brackish) Noble, landowner.

gwrach:  (Brackish) Witch, hag.  Often a practicioner of magic other than stone magic.

gwrach fflam:  (Brackish) Witchfire.

Gylling, Bygthir of:  Largest bygthir in Ledus County.

háihs:  (Low Muttese) Half-blind, one-eyed; with one eye.

Háimóþli:  Land destroyed during the Wars of Empty Horror.  Now occupied by the Duchies of Ehre and Mut and the Weaning Shores.

haírus:  (Low Muttese) Sword.

Hane:  Söderkarl god of agriculture.

Hard Winter:  Middle season of winter.

Hardanger:  Capital of Gylling Bygthir, stead of Thane Bolwerk.

harpies:  Member of the Tribe of Anwar Colbyn.  Also known as plague-maidens, storm-queans, kveld-ritha, or ride-by-nights.

Harvest Festival:  (1) Holy day celebrating the harvest and the end of the growing season, occurring on the Autumnal Equinox.  (2) Associated celebrations.

Harvest Season:  Middle season of autumn.

Haúrnja: Ancient Muttesegod of doom and mischief.

haúrnja: (Low Muttese) Epithet for evil-doers.

häxa:  (Söderkarl) One who possesses a stone and practices sorcery.  Also known as a sorcerer, stone-summoner, witch, or wizard.

Hells, Fire and Ice:  (1) Place of eternal punishment for demons, heretics, and fallen Medianists.  Also known as the Eyes of God.  (2) The sun and the moon.

Hente:  Hente: One of the 15 clans of the Muttese warlords, fromnorthern Mut. Ruling family of the Duchy Mut.

heptisax:  (Söderkarl) Cutting, thrusting pike.

herath:  (Söderkarl) Homeland of the Söderkarl.  Ruled by a hersir.  Equivalent to the EroBernac county.

herr:  (Söderkarl) Villeins.

herr-möte:  (Söderkarl) Gathering of herrs.

hersing:  (Söderkarl) Group of herr.

hersir:  (Söderkarl) Ruler of a herath.  Above a thane and below a yngvi.  Equivalent to the EroBernac count.

herzog:  (High Muttese) Duke.

high seat:  (Söderkarl) Platform in long houses where the house owner and honored guests sit.

High Summer:  Middle season of summer.

hird:  (Söderkarl) Band of houscarls.

Hird of the Einheriar:  One of the Thunderer heresies.

Hirjats!:  (Low Muttese) Come here, you two!

Hoël the Traveled:  Second Medianist Prophet, from Mut.  Taught the first laws of sorcery, tools, and learning.

Houses of Fitta:  Brothels run by the cult of Fitta, Söderkarl goddess of love, whose devotes dedicate their lives in pursuit of perfect sexual ecstasy.

Howler:  Brackish goddess of nature and the Brackland moors.  Goddess of mystery and the rraakks.

Hoyw!:  (Brackish) Ahoy!

hnefatafl:  (Söderkarl) Ancient Söderkarl swords and shields board game.

hof:  (Söderkarl) Temple.

holme-gång:  (Söderkarl) Island promenade.  One-on-one duel to first blood.

Hraerekur, Thane:  Former thane of Gylling Bygthir in Ledus County.  Father of Bolwerk.

huskarl:  (Söderkarl) Sworn man, one who has sworn fealty to a lord.  Such an oath is stronger than familial bonds.  Ranked just below a ridder, is similiar to a knight but without Medianist ties.

Huth-Gadtham:  Brackish god of magic.

hydromel:  (Söderkarl, Synesi) Mead.

Ice Hell: Moon.  Place of punishment for failed Medianists and those who commit crimes of the mind and spirit.

Ihiti:  Lands east of the Desecrated Territories.

iltea:  (Therm) Chosen female.

indirect magic:  (EroBernac) Form of magic derived from the worship of gods, also known as bri’ua or oväder magic.

inigena:  (Brackish) Daughter, girl.

inquest:  Process of interrogation, ordeal, and judgement of an accused heretic by the Medianist Inquisition.

Iselfolk:  Human tribes living in Óriásjord and south.

jaght:  (Low Muttese) Fast, lightweight warship.  Used primarily for shore patrol and pirate interdiction.

jakt:  (Söderkarl) Hunt.

jaktfadir:  (Söderkarl) Hunt master.

jarl:  (Söderkarl) Leader of a family, household, and/or stead.  Below a rig-jarl but frequently higher than a ridder.  Equivalent to the EroBernac vavasour.

Jekhipe:  (Dëstör’erde) Condition of Oneness shared by the gods.

Johlpa the Ax:  Ruler of the Brackish gods.  God of warriors, sheep, and cattle.

Jorun:  Söderkarl goddess of the hearth and home.  Uspak’s wife.

Jostumal:  Dëstör’erde god of evil and the dead.

jûrinîkas:  (Mynyddi) Sailor.

justiciar:  Chief political and judicial officer serving in the courts of counts, doges, dukes, and other high Seven Kingdoms officials.

k’Lida Autarchy:  Island nation somewhere south and west of the Duchy of Mut, across the Abyss Ocean.

Kahedin the Pure:  Third Medianist Prophet, from EroBernd.

Kalds Wató:  Muttese village within the Weaning Shores.  Known for its tolerance of Thunderer heresies.

karl (pl. karls):  (Söderkarl) Free man.

karline:  (Söderkarl) Woman.

karve:  (Söderkarl) Warship.

Katsarloki:  The unified lands of Faírguni and Vis’I Qira.  The eastern shores of the Skudd Sea.  Occupied by the EroBernd Empire and Duchy of Mynydd.

kaúrnó:  (Low Muttese) Maize.

kave:  Priest.

keeq:  Paqa beer, served hot.

khat?:  (Ulbandi) Exclamatory suffix, indicating a question.

kilde:  (Söderkarl) (1) Sorcerer’s stone.  (2) Form of magic derived from the manipulation of a sorcerer’s stone.  Also known as sorcery or stone magic.

Kingdom of Purity:  Former Medianist empire, occupying the territories now ruled by the Duchies of Mut, Ehre, and the EroBernd Empire.  Destroyed in 107 KA with the death of King EroBernd.

kirze:  (Brackish) Agreement, deal.

kjeene’jin:  (High Muttese) Queen.

kjennink:  (High Muttese) King.

knisas:  (Therm) Wasteland.

kobolde:  Vermine-like race.  Travels in packs.  Member of the Tribe of Fée.

Kogr:  Söderkarl goddess of Hell.

Kolbein:  Söderkarl god of the sun and the seasons.

Korp:  (Söderkarl) Member of the Medianist Order of the Raven.

kveld-ritha:  (Söderkarl) Harpies.  Also known as ride-by-nights and storm-queans.

laity:  Commoners of the Medianist faith.

langskip:  (Söderkarl) Longboat.

larvæ:  Spirits of the evil dead.

Last Summer:  First season of autumn.

Latria:  Veneration and worship of the Medianist God.

láusawaúrdei:  (Low Muttese) Meaningless words, nonsense.

Laws of Gro:  One of the Thunderer heresies.

learning magic:  (EroBernac) Form of magic derived from the accumulation of knowledge.

Ledus County:  One of the Southern Territories.

lemur:  Spirits of the evil dead.

leontios:  Gemstone the color of a lion.

Lethrasholme:  Capital of Great Horn Bygthir and Ledus County.  Seat of Count Edgar.

Lièns:  Southern province of Ehre.

lispund:  (Söderkarl) Iron coins from k’Lida lands.  Nearly worthless.

lledrwr:  (Brackish) Merchant.

Lolthebert, Duke:  Current Duke of the Duchy of Mynydd.  Father of one of Superbus Tyrannus Valven’s wives.

Lord of Ash:  Storrada of Fornjotnr.  Söderkarl lady who turned away all suitors to preserve her chastity for God.

Lord of Stone:  Dieudonnée of the Robais.  Mother of the Medianist faith.  Killed by God because she bore a stone.

loupsgarou:  (Söderkarl) Werewolves.

lovi’nä:  (Dëstör’erde) Ale drunk by the gods.

Low Summer:  First season of summer.

luct-marvos:  (Brackish) (1) Clan of the dead and its members.  (2) Outcast, exile.

Lyulph of Háimóþli:  Medianist saint.  Disciple of Pennenc.  Martyred himself to prove God’s power.

mâ!:  (Ulbandi) Exclamatory article.  Never!

maczo:  (Dëstör’erde) Fish.

madness letters:  Poetry written by Aiwi-Druxtô.  Said to instill temporary madness and euphoria in the reader.  Banned in the Seven Kingdoms as heretical works.

Maggot Sea:  Body of water north of Southern Territories, south of the Desecrated Territories.

Maggot Storm:  Time when the Maggot Sea suddenly swelled in size, destroying the lands of Dëstör.  Event when the ogres made their first appearance.

magula:  (Low Muttese) Boy.

mam’a:  (Brackish) Mommy.

Man, Tribe of:  One of the Great Tribes, consisting of all human races.

man-möte:  (Söderkarl) Manly fashion.

mangild:  (Söderkarl) Weregeld.

männa:  (Low Muttese) Man.

männer:  (Low Muttese) Men.

mantle:  Loose, sleeveless garment worn over clothes andarmor.

mark:  (High Muttese) Primary currency used within the Duchy of Mut.

marlinspike:  Spiked tool used to on board ships to separate strands of rope or wire.

MartyrCaddos of stones card in a maru-catu deck.  Also known as the Hanged-Man or Saint.

maru-catu:  Card game, with Brackish and EroBernac varieties.

Masks, Tribe of:  One of the Great Tribes.  Shapeshifters, deceivers, enemies.  Vulnerable to strong spiritual faith, especially indirect magic.

master carpenter:  Officer in charge of the maintenance and repair of a ship’s hull and masts.

maþa:  (Low Muttese) Worm.

matchlock:  Firearm using a burning fuse to discharge the weapon.  Rifles have an effective range of 300 meters.

matir:  (Brackish) Mother.

may:  (Söderkarl) Woman, girl.

median:  (1) Holy symbol of the Medianist church. A bisectedcircle.  (2) Hand gesture representing the holy symbol.

Medianism:  Dominant religious belief in the Seven Kingdoms.

mei:  (Low Muttese) Me.

merlaos:  Extremely rare aquatic race.  Although almost completely unknown in the Skudd Sea, they are greatly respected by sailors.

Melt Season:  First season of spring.

mesga:  (Brackish) Mongrel.

ministerialis:  (High Muttese) Minstrel.

mirain:  (Brackish) Beautiful, comely.

misericord:  Hinged seat that gives support to a standing worshiper when turned up.

Moar:  Dëstör’erde god of death and forgetfulness.  Caretaker of humankind.

moer forwyn:  (Brackish) Sea spirits.

Mol!:  (Brackish) (1) Praise.  (2) Exclamation conveying praise.

Mommolin of Háimóþli:  Medianist saint.  Disciple of Pennenc.

moon:  Ice Hell.  Also known as the Eye of God.

more’da:  (Brackish) Ship.

moritex:  (Brackish) Navigator.

morwr:  (Brackish) Sailor.

mosac:  (Brackish) Son, boy.

Mostheath:  Family stead in southern Gylling Bygthir.

mulct:  (Söderkarl) Weregeld.

murder-age:  (Söderkarl) Time of battle, war, or other strife.

Muspelheim:  Söderkarl land of fire.  Populated by fire demons and giants.  Ruled by Bergelmir.

Mut, Duchy of:  One of the Seven Kingdoms.

Muttese:  (1) Native of the Duchy of Mut.  (2) Language of the Duchy of Mut (high and low).

Muttese, High:  Royal language of the Duchy of Mut.  Largely a mix of Low Muttese, EroBernac, and Ehrech.

Muttese, Low:  Common language of the Duchy of Mut.  Largely a mix of Söderkarl, Háimóþli Drungi, and tongues from a variety of tribes and peoples conquered by the duchy.

Mynydd, Duchy of:  One of the Seven Kingdoms.

Mynyddi:  (1) Native of the Duchy of Mynydd.  (2) Language of the Duchy of Mynydd.  Largely a cross between EroBernac, Söderkarl, and Muttese.

na:  (Brackish) No.

Nabunal of the Synesi:  Medianist saint and disciple of Pennenc.  Converted Synesi who prayed for relief from torture.

nage:  (Brackish) No (denial of an affirmative).

Names of Power:  (Söderkarl) Names of the Seven Swords of the Dømme-Ring.  Part of the Thunderer heresies.

narr:  (High Muttese) Fool.

Narr the Fool:  Brackish Trickster god.

Nâströnd:  Place of torment for the Söderkarl criminal dead within Niflheim.

navât:  (Ulbandi) No, not.

ne:  (Mynyddi) No.

nej:  (Söderkarl) No.

New Year’s:  (1) Beginning of the Medianist calendar year, occurring on the Vernal Equinox of Green Season.  (2) Associated celebration of the Superbus Tyrannus’s birthday.

nicors:  Breed of massive, malignant sea creatures.  Although almost completely unknown in the Skudd Sea, they are greatly feared by sailors.

Niflheim:  Söderkarl cold realm of death.  Ruled by Kogr.

Night, Tribe of:  One of the Great Tribes, consisting of all races considered “undead”.  Vulnerable to silver.  Also known as the Tribe of Ešhar.

Night of 10,000 Fires:  Final EroBernac offensive to end the war with Ulbandus and Synes in 97 HA.  Through magic and assassination, the enemy sorcerers were slaughtered in the city of Telman.  Afterwards, the city was renamed Red Telman.

nisse:  Member of the Tribe of Fée.  Common in the southern lands.

nitriaries:  Saltpetre plantations.

Niujis Baúrgs:  Muttese port city.

Ó!:  (Low Muttese) Oh!

oainjyr:  (Brackish) Whore.

Och fi!:  (Brackish) Alas!

odocos:  (Brackish) Elder.

ogre:  Cannibalistic member of the Tribe of Man.  Reknown for their strength and ferocity.  Also known as Óriás.

øl:  Mildly alcoholic Söderkarl barley beer.

ondvegi:  (Söderkarl) Stead’s high seat.

ordeal:  Application of torture during an inquest.

Order of the Raven:  Elite knights of the Seven Kingdoms, distinctive by their black cloaks.  Medianist paladins.

orgetos:  (Brackish) Slayer.

óriás:  (Söderkarl)  Ogres.

Óriás!:  (Söderkarl) Epithet of praise for a brave or skilled warrior.

Óriásjord:  Land of the ogres, south and east of the Southern Territories.

Orqueneles:  Northeastern province of Ehre.  Guiromélans’s homeland.

outlaw:  (Söderkarl) One who has been convicted of crimes against his bygthir or stead and has been stripped of all rights and protections within that community.

oväder:  (Söderkarl) (1) Storm.  (2) Form of magic derived from the worship of gods.  Also known as indirect or bri’ua magic.

oväder-möte:  (Söderkarl) Religious ceremony dedicated to the ovän.

ovän:  (Söderkarl) Gods.  Also known as Great Lords.

överfurste:  (Óriás) Ruler.

paivis:  (Therm) Son.

Paliesin of Vis’I Qira: Medianist saint and disciple of Pennenc.Further expanded on the gender roles for the Medianist laity, particularlythe place of women.

Palpi/Palpin:  (1) Native of the Palpi Peninsula. (2) Language ofthe Palpi Peninsula.  Largely a cross between Southern Brackish andEroBernac.

Palpi Peninsula/Palpin:  Region occupied by the 12 city-states of the Abaisd Territories.

Palpi city-states:  Twelve cities of the Abaisd Territories, occupying the Palpi Peninsula.  Most are independently ruled by a Doge or other municipal official.

paq-cob:  Paqa husband.  Male paqa.

paq-eyas:  Hatched or nearly hatched paqa young.

paq-pen:  Female paqa.  Extremely long-lived.  Highly territorial, they possess a severe dislike of other paq-pens and consider paq-cobs and paq-eyas to be disposable.

paqa:  Member of Tribe of Anwar Colbyn.  Bird-like race with especially long arms and legs.  Known for their delicious flesh.

Paqan:  Language of the paqa.

pasha:  (Ulbandi) Duke.

Peiné Païen:  Medianist cathedral in Castitasdecus.

pektus:  (Brackish) Child, children.

Pennenc the Wise:  First Medianist Prophet, from Ehre.  Defined the gender roles for Medianist laity.

Pennons:  (Ehrech) Long usually triangular or swallow-tailed streamers, typically attached to the head of a lance as an ensign.

Pharamont, Count:  Count of Goort in Southern EroBernd.  Father of one of Superbus Tyrannus Valven’s wives.

pi’bati:  (Dëstör’erde) Exotic fruit favored by the gods.

Pigi Realms:  Heartland of the Synes Republic, forbidden to outsiders.

pitye:  (Therm) Treasure, artifact.

Plainas Sarvas:  Mynyddi city, known for its exceptional steel and weapon-making.

Plague of Lies:  Curse of unknown origin, effect, and duration.  Nearly all knowledge and records during the plague were lost.  Estimated to have lasted 300 years.

Pliamin of Vis’I Qira:  Medianist patron saint of lost causes.  Disciple of Kahedin.

poltyn:  (Therm) Fortress.

poteen:  (Dëstör’erde) Whiskey.

pottage:  Thick soup of vegetables and often meat.

Praggan:  Muttese village within the Weaning Shores.  Known for its tolerance of Thunderer heresies.

pras:  (Therm) To wash, to splash, to bedew.

Primate:  Religious leader of the Medianist church.

Prost!:  (High Muttese) Cheers!

Prum:  Province of Mut.

Ptakkal:  Mynyddi frontier town.  Known for its exceptionally rich nitriaries.

putras:  (Therm) Babbler.

qéns:  (Low Muttese) Lady.

qiþan:  (Low Muttese) Tell, speak.

quadrivium:  Upper tier of Ehrech education, consisting of the following studies:  geometry, arithmetic, music, and astronomy.

quartermaster:  On pirate vessels, the elected officer in chargeof all weapons and sidearms, and the only person who can countermand thecaptain’s decisions.

quean:  Whore.

Quillo:  City in ancient Ehre.  Deathplace of Saint Lyulph.

Rænn:  Söderkarl god of sunshine and gladness.  Kolbein and Fitta’s son.

Ragnvald of Fornjotnr:  Medianist saint and disciple of Guiot.  Hersir who assisted Superbus Tyrannus Berengar in conquering the Southern Territories and bringing Medianism to the land.  The first to translate the words of the Prophets into Söderkarl.  Considered the father of Söderkarl Medianist doctrine.

rash boon:  Granting of a request before the stakes are fully known.  To refuse can be a loss of honor.

raskus:  (Therm) Hunting dance.

Raucholle Mountains:  Range of volcanic mountains in Ehre.  Currently occupied by the alfs.

readdas:  (Brackish) Sacrifice.

Reccared of EroBernd:  Former Dux Bellôrum under Superbus Tyrannus Serli, crowned Superbus Tyrannus when Serli denied Guiot the Virgin and became the Anti-Prophet.  Led the EroBernd Empire to victory in the Resurrection War.  Considered one of the greatest of the Superbus Tyranni.  Disciple of Guiot.

Red Telman:  Southern coastal city of Ulbandus.  Place of many executions.  Formerly known as Telman.

Resurrection War:  War between Superbus Tyrannus Saint Reccared and Serli, the Anti-Prophet.  The second war between Mut, Ehre, and the EroBernd Empire, ending in victory for Reccared’s EroBernac forces.

ridder:  (Söderkarl) Söderkarl Medianist knight.

riddarasögur:  (Söderkarl) Chivalric sagas (“knight sayings”).

rig-jarl:  (Söderkarl) High jarl.  Ruler of a bygth and, if not appointed by a hersir, is frequently the most powerful or wealthy jarl in the community.  Above a jarl but below a thane.  Equivalent to the EroBernac baron.

riges:  (Brackish) Plural of rix or rixa.

ritter:  (High Muttese) Muttese knight.

rix:  (Brackish) King.

rixueramos:  (Brackish) High king.

Robais:  Drungi tribe from northeastern Háimóþli.  Now extinct.

Rompu Islands:  Western-most territory claimed by the Duchy of Ehre.  Faces the Abyss Ocean.

rope and rigging master:  Officer in charge of the fabrication, maintenance, and repair of all rigging on board a ship.

rorqual:  Species of southern whale.  Travels in groups called pods.

Rostig Thron:  Capital of the Duchy of Mut, and a major port city.

rraakk:  Hostile species invading the northwestern Bracklands.

rukh:  (EroBernac) Siege-tower piece in a castles game.

runa:  (Söderkarl) (1) Rune.  (2) Form of magic derived from the invocation and control of spirits and demons.  Also known as circle or dusios magic.

sacardd:  (Brackish) Priest.

sagum:  (Synesi) Military woolen cloak.

sail master:  Officer in charge of the fabrication, operation,maintenance, and repair of a ship’s sails.

sangrenel:  Cannon shot consisting of jagged scrap iron.

Saúrgan:  Muttese village within the Weaning Shores.  Known for its tolerance of Thunderer heresies.

saut:  (Therm) Soul.

saut-isas:  (Therm) Soulless, lazy.

scalc:  (High Muttese) Servant.

scatt:  (Söderkarl) Tax.

sea-king:  (Söderkarl) Pirate leader.

sea-teras:  Highly advanced aquatic race, known for their ferocity.  Extremely rare in the Skudd Sea.

sego:  (Brackish) Victory.

sellâria:  (EroBernac) Courtesan.

Serli of EroBernd:  Superbus Tyrannus and son of the Fourth Prophet, Guiot.  Denying his father’s title, he claimed himself the true Prophet of God and fled to Ehre.  As a result, he was excommunicated and labeled the Anti-Prophet, sparking the Resurrection War.

Serlian heresy:  The dominant Medianist heresy, following the teachings of Superbus Tyrannus Serli, the Anti-Prophet.  Their existence is only marginally tolerated within the Seven Kingdoms, with extreme persecution commonplace.

Serlians:  Followers of the Serlian heresy.

Seven Kingdoms:  Confederation of eight Duchies circling the Skudd Sea:  Duchy of Ehre, EroBernd Empire, Duchy of Mut, Duchy of Mynydd, Palpi City-states (Abaisd Territories), Southern Territories, Duchy of Ulbandus, and the Ymyl Gwland Baronies.  Ruled by a Superbus Tyrannus, currently Duke Valven of the EroBernd Empire.

Seven Swords of the Dømme-Ring:  Also known as the Söderkarl sword-cults.  One of the Thunderer heresies.

shade:  Member of the Tribe of Masks.  Also known as themoch.

shadows:  Spirits of those slain by the themoch.

shield-may:  (Söderkarl) Warrior woman.

shield-storm:  (Söderkarl) Battle.

shut beds:  (Söderkarl) Sleeping closets found in wealthy long houses.

sign of the fig:  Obscene hand gesture, made by thrusting the thumb between the ring and index fingers.  Intended to represent female genitalia.

Skafhog the Shipbuilder:  Söderkarl god of summer, the shallow sea, and sailors.

skald:  (Söderkarl) Minstrel, poet.

skalme:  (Therm) Sword.

skilas:  (Therm) Impetuous, quick, unfortunate.

skip:  (Low Muttese) Ship.

skræling:  (Óriás) Humanbeing.  Food for ogres.

Skudd Sea:  Body of water around which the Seven Kingdoms are located.  Enclosed by the lands of Katsarloki, Háimóþli, the Bracklands, and the Southern Territories.

slug:  (Brackish) Slave.

smente’nä:  (Dëstör’erde) Cream.

snekkja:  (Söderkarl) Langskip with large spur on aft end.

Söderkarl:  (1) Native of the Southern Territories.  (2) Language of the Southern Territories.

Söderkarl sword-cults:  Worship of the Fists of the Seven Swords.  One of the Thunderer heresies.

sorcerer:  One who possesses a stone and practices sorcery.  Also known as a stone-summoner, witch, or wizard.

sorcery:  (EroBernac) Form of magic derived from the manipulation of a sorcerer’s stone, also known as stone or kilde magic.

Southern Territories:  One of the Seven Kingdoms and territories of the EroBernd Empire.  Consists of Fornjotnr County, Frostthing County, and Ledus County.

spatha:  (Brackish) Broadsword.

stead:  (Söderkarl) City, town.  Originally, long house and subordinate buildings.  Typically ruled by a jarl.

spear-storm:  (Söderkarl) Battle.

Stolest:  A tiny independent nation residing between the EroBernd Empire and the Duchy of Mynydd.

stone-summoner:  (Brackish) One who possesses a stone and practices sorcery.  Also known as a sorcerer, witch, or wizard.

stone:  (Brackish) (1) Source of sorcerer’s power.  Also known as an ember.  (2) Form of magic derived from the manipulation of a sorcerer’s stone, also known as sorcery.

storm-age:  (Söderkarl) Time of battle, war, or other strife.

Storrada of Fornjotnr:  Fallen Lord of Ash.  Söderkarl lady who turned away all suitors to preserve her chastity for God.

stromkarls:  Largely benign sea creatures, common in the southern Skudd Sea.

suchis:  (Therm) Child.

summoning:  (Brackish/EroBernac) Invocation of magic through a sorcerer’s stone.

sun:  Fire Hell.  Also known as the Eye of God.

Superbus Tyrannus:  Ruler of the Seven Kingdoms.  Currently held by Duke Valven the Usurer of the EroBernd Empire.

Suptra:  Brackish Travelling Goddess.

sura:  (Therm) Leader, hero.

sword-dealer:  (Söderkarl) Murderer.

sword-möte:  (Söderkarl) War counsel.

sword-storm:  (Söderkarl) Battle.

Sword-Thing:  (Söderkarl) Conflict, battle.

Synes Republic:  Nation east of the Seven Kingdoms.  Much more tolerant and syncretic than the Seven Kingdoms.

Synesi:  (1) Native of the Synes Republic.  (2) Language of the Synes Republic.

Taibhsear:  Dëstör’erde first man, first sorcerer.  Keeper of Dreams.

Tapestry Delta:  Confluence of rivers and swamps in northern Ulbandus.

tata:  (Brackish) Daddy.

Test of the Einheriar:  (Söderkarl) Ancient ritual to select the ruler when there is no obvious heir through succession.  Dates back to the origins of the Thunderer heresies.

Tewi!:  (Brackish) Shut up!

thane:  (Söderkarl) Ruler of a bygthir. Above arig-jarl but below a hersir.  Equivalent to the EroBernacviscount.

themoch:  Member of the Tribe of Masks.  Shapeshifting enemy of Man.  Also known as a shade.

therm:  Member of the Tribe of Anwar Clobyn. Carnivorous centaurs.  Also known as udyronde.

Thing:  (Söderkarl) Bygth community gathering.  Time of judgment, mediation, and weregeld.

thrall:  (Söderkarl) Slave.

Thunderer:  Söderkarl god of war, defender of mankind.

Thunderer heresies:  Original pre-Medianist pagan religion of the Southern Territories, consisting, in part, of the Brand of Uspak, the Cult of the Dømme-Horn, the Laws of Gro, the Hird of the Einheriar, and the Söderkarl sword-cults.  Outlawed in the Seven Kingdoms.

thurse:  Member of Tribe of Fée.  Ice giants, tower builders.  Live primarily south of Óriásjord.

thveita:  (Söderkarl) Large knife.

Tonsa:  Nation south of the Synes Republic.

tonttu:  Member of the Tribe of Fée.  Renown assassins.

tools magic:  (EroBernac) Form of magic derived from the design and creation of tools.

töten:  (Low Muttese) Kill.

Touto!:  (Brackish) Alert!

traellern:  Member of the Tribe of Fée.

tranas:  (Therm) Dance of Disease, rot.

trencher:  Wooden platter for serving food.

tresses:  Lady’s long, unbound hair.

triad:  (Brackish) Bardic poem relating Brackish history, following themes of three.

triptych:  A picture or carving in three panels side by side.

trougo:  (Brackish) Unhappy, cursed.

turm:  (Therm) The hunt, the chase.

tüzelés beans:  Beans that are roasted, ground, and soaked in hot water.  The result is a k’Lida beverage called tüzeh.

twi-bill:  (Söderkarl) Hooked polearm.

two of bri’ua:  Sacrifice or Oblation card in a maru-catu deck.

Tygg:  Söderkarl god of doom and mischief.

tyggskins:  Member of the Tribe of Masks.  Shapeshifters, heralds of corruption.  Minions of the themoch.

þaruh!:  (Low Muttese) Now!

þiuda:  (Low Muttese) Villein.

þiufs:  (Low Muttese) Thieving.

þu:  (Low Muttese) You.

Ü-:  (Low Muttese) Interrogative prefix.

udyronde:  (Söderkarl) Therm.

uinom:  Brackish wine.

Ulbandi:  (1) Native of the Duchy of Ulbandus.  (2) Language of the Duchy of Ulbandus.

Ulbandus, Duchy of:  One of the Seven Kingdoms.

Unhulþa:  One of the 15 clans of the Muttese warlords, fromeastern Mut. Known for wearing long mustaches.

Uspak:  Ruler of the Söderkarl gods.

vair-us:  (Therm) Bonded.

Valven the Usurer, Duke:  Current Duke of the EroBernd Empire and Superbus Tyrannus of the Seven Kingdoms.

Vasud:  Söderkarl god of the south, darkness, cold, and the thurse.

vavasour:  Noble ranking below a baron.

ve’co:  (Brackish) (1) Rage.  (2) Brackish berserker.

Ventdômes:  Western Province of Ehre.  Suffers from numerous alf attacks.

ver:  (Therm) Source, sorcerer.

Vigdis:  Söderkarl goddess of the moon and magic.

villein:  Free citizen of the Seven Kingdoms.

Vis’I Qira:  Northern land east of the Skudd Sea.  Joined with Faírguni to form Katsarloki.  Occupied by the EroBernd Empire.

vitchoor:  (Brackish) Bastard.

volva:  (Söderkarl) Wise woman, witch.

wadmal:  (Söderkarl) Homespun clothing.

waffen:  (High Muttese) Weapons.

Wái!:  (Low Muttese) Woe!

wáidédja:  (Low Muttese) Woe-doer, malefactor, thief.

Wars of Empty Horror:  War nearly 1700 years ago, between the early Medianist Drungi tribes and other races, particularly the paqa and the ahrounoi.  The humans proved victorious though the continent of Háimóþli was shattered.  Saint Gaudin played a pivotal role as military general and spiritual visionary.

Weaning Shores:  Region of rough coastline, islands, and reefs on eastern Mut and southern Ehre.  Remains of the land of Háimóþli.

weißbier:  Muttese wheat beer.

weihs:  (Low Muttese) Town, village.

weregeld:  (Söderkarl) Ransom paid to settle or prevent a blood feud.

werewolves:  Member of the Tribe of Ešhar.  Shapechangers or “skin-changers”.  Also known as loupsgarou.

wheel-lock:  Firearm using a spring-loaded fly wheel to generate sparks and discharge the weapon.  The most accurate of firearms.  Easier to load and safer than matchlocks, they are less reliable than flintlocks.

White Wounds Plague:  In 230 GA, plague that decimated the population and livestock of the Ehrech province of Ventdômes.  Rumor to be of alf origin.

Winter Nights:  Night before the Harvest Festival.  In some places, the Winter Nights festivities surpass those of the Harvest Festival itself.  In Söderkarl lands, it is the time of the fall slaughter of cattle.

witch:  (1) One who possesses a stone and practices sorcery.  Also known as a sorcerer, stone-summoner, or wizard.  (2) Anyone who illegally practices magic, proselytizes non-Medianist beliefs, or otherwise exhibits heretical behavior in the Seven Kingdoms.

witch-song:  (Söderkarl) Summoning by a non-Medianist sorcerer.

witchfire:  The God of Death’s net.  Eldrich flames that burn in the wakes of the ships and upon their decks and masts.  Said to be the food for the worms of the Maggot Sea.  Also known as gwrach fflam.

wizard:  (1) One who possesses a stone and practices sorcery.  Also known as a sorcerer, stone-summoner, or witch.  (2) A Medianist priest.

wolfskin:  (Söderkarl) Elite berserk.

yajuu:  Sea spirits.  Although almost completely unknown in the Skudd Sea, they are greatly respected by sailors.

Ymyl Gwland Baronies:  Largest of the Seven Kingdoms and territory of the EroBernd Empire.

yngvi:  (Söderkarl) King and ruler of the Söderkarl cythth.  This title has not been used since 24 GA, when Gulskeg Drotnersson was killed in battle with the EroBernd Empire.

ysbryd:  (Brackish) Spirit.

:  (Drungi) Earth, soil.

:  (1) (Söderkarl) Earth mother.  One of the Fists of the Seven Swords.  (2) The World.

zalmos:  (Therm) Skin, tribe.

Zburul:  Therm goddess of the hunt.  The shining one.

zenésturm:  (Therm) Hunters.

zilmas:  (Therm) Greening, Spring.

zukas:  Sea spirits.  Although almost completely unknown in the Skudd Sea, they are greatly respected by sailors.

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