History and Legends of the Mad Brothers

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Player's Note: Cannubal is not a real god. There are no gods or goddesses in Lyran Tal, though there are characters who believe in them faithfully.

The entity named Cannubal is indeed very powerful and very terrifying, but certainly not a god. The world believes he is, though, and there are only seven actual characters in all the world who know otherwise. However, the "god" Cannubal is, in reality, a synthesis of multiple War God religions. This is why he is known by different names to different cultures. "Cannubal" is the name used by the now-extinct Redcaps, but other societies call him (or his mythical equivalent, as the case may be), by the following names:

Dwarves: Canos Bul
Elves: Karosh Sha'Bale
Humans: Cannibal
Seleventi: Accipitridae ap Rapere
Gnolls: Huaina Hiene
Goblins and Goblin-Kin: Canig'Slig
Ogres and Ogre-Kin: The Great Scream Beneath the Bloody Ground

The ways of Cannubal are those of a monster. Cannubal embodies all that is vile and gruesome, in the form of bloodshed and murder. Inevitably where Cannubal walks, bloody wars are sure to follow. The elder of the Mad Brothers, Cannubal was imprisoned deep beneath the Badlands after he was defeated in his war against the gods. Now he bides his time, waiting for the day when enough life's blood has been spilled upon the earth to awaken him from his imprisonment. Until then, he is content to act through his Generals and, more specifically, his Chief General who serves as his will-given-flesh.

Like his brother Gom, Cannubal was driven mad by the seductive wiles of his own mother, the lustful goddess Lady Cyrene.

Chapter One: The Birth of Cannubal

Cannubal was born as a god of war, that much is certain. It is believed that before his descent into madness, Cannubal was a force for honorable battle and dignity. He sired children with a mortal mother, and these divine beings were his Thirteen Children who embodied his ideals on Lyran Tal.

But Cannubal was soon driven mad by the seductive and carnal ways of his mother and lover, Cyrene, and because of this madness his ways quickly turned to darkness and evil. He slew his mortal lover, and turned his Thirteen Children to his newly discovered ways by having them feast upon their mother's flesh, bones, and blood. Allying himself with his brother, who was equally demented, Cannubal waged an epic war against his fellow gods.

It is not known what happened during this war so many millennia ago, but it is believed that a great number of lives were lost--possibly more than in any war before. What is known is that Cannubal was the last of the Mad Brothers to be defeated, and that his monumental defeat was accomplished only when a young monk took up sword and shield and sacrificed his life to defeat the bloody god. Inevitably, both Cannubal and the monk, whose name is lost to the waters of time, were imprisoned together beneath the Badlands. A tragic story indeed, and one that does not have a happy ending, for it seems that the more blood that we mortals spill in battle the closer and closer Cannubal comes to being released from his imprisonment. We can only hope that when this happens--and it will happen if we do not halt our warlike ways--that the great monk who first imprisoned him still lives and will be freed as well.

Chapter Two: The Thirteen Children of Cannubal -- The Redcaps

Cannubal was not deprived of his revenge upon the mortal world. The gods were unfortunately shortsighted in their views of Cannubal, and believed that his Thirteen Children could be returned to the ways of honor and dignity. This was not to be so, for they were greatly enraged at the imprisonment of their father. So angered were they, that they called out to him beyond the barrier of the gods' magics and cried out for a means of vengeance.

And their father answered.

Cannubal gave his children many gifts. Among them was his insatiable hunger for all things in existence, a strength that rivaled all others, and freedom from the emotions of love and joy (which he believed were the emotions of the weak). Because of their actions however, the Thirteen Children were irrevocably transformed. The once beautiful visages of the Seven Sons were twisted into hideous mockeries, with coarse, gray skin and broad, flat teeth. Their hair that was once white and pure became stained red with the blood of their victims, and their beautiful blue eyes soon burned red with the fury of their father's blackened heart. The Six Daughters were similarly transformed, though they retained an undeniably primal beauty. No longer were they the Thirteen Children... they had become the Redcaps.

Gifted with this new transformation, the Redcaps made their home in Lideon, the city of their Father. They have since dwelled within the Badlands, seeking to spread violence and warfare throughout the world. Fortunately their populations remain low, else the world would truly have something to fear--not that it should not fear them even now.

Chapter Three: The Soldiers of Cannubal

Of all who worship the gods, few can rival the hideous natures of those who follow Cannubal. These men and women can only be described as cunning monsters, carrying his madness within them. They have no regard for any life, and are filled with perverted and malicious desires, preferring to drown the world in blood. Priests are instead referred to as Generals, and followers as Soldiers. As the terminology implies, these servants of Cannubal possess great martial prowess and are almost always found to be warriors and vicious killers. His Generals are always fearsome warriors and great tacticians, and the Chief General - who is traditionally always a Redcap, and chosen directly by Cannubal - is inevitably one of the most fearsome beings in existence.

Perhaps the most horrifying trait of those who follow this beast of a god is their carnal appetites. Just as Cannubal first turned his Thirteen Children to his cause through cannibalism, all those who pledge allegiance to his ways devour the flesh and viscera of their enemies. In fact, among the human cultures, this Mad Brother is known as Cannibal.

Those Soldiers who worship Cannubal are, above all things, guaranteed to not seem religious. Many may be fanatics, but they do not sport the means or methods of typical religious folk. In fact, they are more likely to seem like hardened warriors with a cynical edge than anything else, that is, until you find them devouring the remains of their foes.

Chapter Four: Relics and Artifacts of Cannubal

There are only two artifacts of any note in relation to Cannubal, and they are both marks of station amongst his Soldiers.

The Blade of Cannubal is a powerful sword of evil that has the trait of protecting he who wields it from all magic, no matter how powerful, that would alter or otherwise affect his mind or body. Only the Chief General (High Priest) of Cannubal bears this sword, and it is only by the admission of the dark god that one can touch it lest he be struck instantly dead. One of its other, lesser-known powers is its utter indestructibility. The blade simply cannot be destroyed. It is believed that the sword itself was wielded by Cannubal during his campaign against the elder gods, whether or not this is true has yet to be seen. Perhaps in his hands it contains even more fearsome powers that can only bring us mortals nightmares.

The Badge of Cannubal is a typical symbol found amongst the Generals and Soldiers of Cannubal. It serves but two, fairly mundane purposes. Its primary function is to serve as a note of identification between Soldiers and Generals. Generals of Cannubal wear a white badge, which signifies the devouring of bone. His Soldiers wear a red badge, which symbolizes the drinking of blood. Another, more important purpose is that it protects those who wear it from the demons and monsters that serve the mad god. There is a tale of some ardent worshippers who transform into strange creatures by moonlight, half-man and half-wolf, or worse, and that the only thing which protects one from their rage is a Badge of Cannubal. This remains to be proven, but hopefully never will be.

Book Two: Gom

Gom (pronounced "gohm") is a god shrouded in the mystery of ancient times. He is the younger brother of Cannubal. Gom is a god of treachery, greed and hedonism. It is due to his influence that such concepts were introduced into the world. Men betray men, they lie, they cheat, and they fight wars over property, pride and control of wealth simply because when they first began to populate the earth, Gom took them into his selfish embrace. One of the two Mad Brothers, Gom supported his brother and aided him in the wars against the other gods. During the war, some time after madness had taken hold of both brothers, Gom mistakenly infected Cannubal with a horrible sensation of greed and paranoia, causing his brother to turn on him. Cannubal injured Gom terribly, then in a moment of lucidity, realized the pain he'd inflicted on his brother, and, weeping, used what power he could spare to place Gom in stasis deep within the badlands. It is fabled that when Cannubal again emerges to scour the lands of Lyran Tal that he will seek to find a way to cure his brother and bring him back to his side.

Chapter One: The Birth of Gom

Gom was born some centuries after his elder brother Cannubal to the Lady Cyrene, a beautiful and benevolent goddess. She seduced one of the old gods and bore him the two brothers, then grew bitter and vengeful when the father of the Mad Brothers ceased to return her affections. But before her bitterness came, the Lady bore the younger brother, Gom.

Gom was originally a god who brought altruism, charity, amnesty and forgiveness to the world. He touched the races of Lyran Tal and inspired them with aspects of kindness that had not yet been defined. Gom enjoyed a peaceful, pleasant existence beside his brother and his mother.

Chapter Two: The Twin Sons of Gom

The god of altruism also sired children of his own. Sometime after his creation, he seduced a river nymph by the name of Brocne who bore him two children: Furca and Muo, twin sons. They each shared unique qualities and helped to spread their father's influence across Lyran Tal.

Soon, Lady Cyrene manipulated his elder brother and began to change him, resulting in the death of Cannubal's mortal lover. Gom was ignorant of the truth, as Lady Cyrene was a master of deception and also the mother whom he trusted. He continued to watch over Furca and Muo who began to build a civilization of their own. When he noticed his brother Cannubal was in distress, he attempted to aid him, but Cannubal rejected all of his efforts. His head filled with sympathy and sorrow for Cannubal, Gom approached his mother and asked for her help.

Chapter Three: The Seduction of Gom

Cyrene capitalized on Gom's weakened state, and filled his mind with lies and falsehoods. She seduced him with her powers and soon they became lovers. Gom was assured that the Lady would correct Cannubal's ills and bring him back to a healthy state of mind. He communed with Brocne less and less and did not keep as close a watch over his sons and their people as he had in the past.

Soon, Gom began to change. And as he changed, he neglected Brocne and his sons to the point where they thought him missing. Furca and Muo cried out to him, but Gom did not answer. Brocne traveled to the dwelling place of the Mad Brothers, and, discovering Gom wrapped in his mother's carnal embrace, went mad with jealousy and grief. Her father, a river spirit, took pity on her and transformed her into a jesimin bush, many of which populate parts of Luminii and the lower reaches of Cloosidia to this day. On this very day, Gom's madness overtook him and his grief he touched the world with his twisted being and created greed, avarice, hedonism and selfishness overnight.


Note: This manuscript was donated by Justin Elggren.

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