Through the ages, on different fields of battle, Condru-Hanra has taken a variety of guises. They all have much in common, though. He, for the lack of a better pronoun, appears as a man in his prime, tall and mighty, with endlessly deep blue eyes, charisma oozing from every pore. Wild, untamed and driven are adjectives most often used to describe him. Few can explain that smirk of his though, or the brooding moods he’s prone to.
Never showing fear, his stance is proud, even arrogant, the voice carrying both command and mockery in every word. Condru-Hanra always acts as if he belonged where he stans, and the others were just guests.
His dress will inevitably consist of massive heavy armour, featureless except for a seven-pointed star on his chest, and he will always weild a sword he’s never seen without - an immense blade taller than a man few warriors can lift, not speaking of swinging it.
I had flown and all was serene.
Mine had been the shape of a sphere, because it is perfect.
All was silent, and all was clean.
I was in thought, lost in it deep.
For brightly shine the stars, and every ray is a tale.
Then a sphere stood in my way, it would not move, nor could I sway
it with word nor promise, song
for its mind was chaos, all was wrong
It embraced me in a crushing hold.
Nibbar-Naktu, He Who Sheds Blood In Joy, was delighted to find a huge chunk of metal in the crater that ruined his lawn of carnivorous grass. Of coursed, at first he raged, but after he found that the metal burned even his mighty hand, his thoughts turned to how he could use it to harm his divine siblings. Actually, all his thoughts turned to ponderings on how to harm someone sooner or later, but that was his divine nature. Others claimed that he just enjoyed it, but… it’s actually great when someone enjoys what he does best, isn’t it?
Being the god of War and Sharp Objects Used To Hurt People (And Those Blunt Too) (this title is self-given, others just called him the Warlord or ‘Don’t Piss Him Off’) he crafted a sword, fit for his mighty physical manifestation. Plain in its deadly simplicity, a shape implying ‘severe injury’, it was his favourite tool of the trade.
His divine fellows were soon rather unhappy to find themselves assailed with a weapon most unpleasant, the Warlord weilding it, and his frenzied followers descending upon their flocks.
So the First Age of Conflict began.
Nibbar-Naktu was more than happy to mangle a dozen or two of deities, and it turned out to be a rather entertaining (for him) century.
The other gods, smarter now, deemed it too dangerous to face the Warlord in person, and resorted to sending champions of their faiths to end his reign of terror, and to whittling away the numbers of his followers, as to weaken his power base.
Most heroes were quite outmatched when facing the Warlord, often failing even to unsheath their weapons.
That was when Condru-Hanra awoke.
Being forged into a sword did much to disturb his long slumber, and being used to smash forts, sunder mountains and to sewer limbs and heads did not help either.
Thus, he decided to watch and see what was going on - the world full of colours and sounds was much unlike the meditative serenity of the cosmos.
In the end, he did not like what he saw - the deities were using the mortals as toys, as pawns in their struggles, and as soon as Nibbar-Naktu grew bored with his crusade, ending the First Age of Conflict, the other deities fell to squabbling amongst each other.
Much to his chagrin, Condru-Hanra found out that he could neither move much around, nor assume his beloved spherical shape. Thus, using the sorcerous energy so abundant in these lands, he crafted a body resembling one of those mortals, and let it carry his new form. When he found out that the Warlord was asleep after drinking and frolicking with his concubines to excess, he wandered away.
The Aftermath was a dreary period, and Condru-Hanra tried to teach those intriguing mortals the liberty of thought, and responsibility for free will, or, in short terms, ‘Think for yourself, schmuck’.
Secular and religious lords steered their subjects like a blind man racing a blind horse towards a cliff, and the deities did not help the situation much.
A few more Ages of Conflict followed as the gods battled out very relevant issues, like who was the prettiest, brawniest or who had the best karaoke skills, or who was entitled to collect prayers over the continent of Mu (sadly, sinking the whole place). And, they wrecked Condru’s social experiments over and over again.
Enough to make anyone rather angry, even though he is but a chunk of metal.
He was going to beat sense into some -a lot of- heads.
Becoming the ultimate anarchist, he strove to bring down wordly authorities, and make a hard time for the gods, encouraging heresy, atheism and a messy death to those who were too convicted and set in their faith.
He became to be known as the Anathema, the Chaos Torch and The Scythe. Headstaker, Shrinebreaker, Faithshaker. Countless times he did die ‘die’, but all failed to realize that what they ‘killed’ was but a puppet, and that the sword weilded the man, not the other way around.
Yet, he decided on one fundamental thing: “This is too much work for a piece of scrap metal. I need help.”
That was when the less direct part of his plan took shape.
His mysterious employer drew Sir Conall hard. Well, not exactly a ‘sir’ since he threw the chair in his souvereign’s face, fled the country on exactly that souvereign’s favourite horse and rode off with his hot, if a little spoilt, daughter. But, he liked the sound of it.
The goons of the king and the acolytes always managed to find him, but by exploiting their straightforward naivity, and through his might, he prevailed. Here, within this mountain was what he sought - the ultimate weapon against royalty and oppression.
The portal to the dungeon was monumental - giant pillars and colossal statues of kings gazing down on the interloper, dire warings on all sides, skeletons of less fortunate adventurers strewn on the ground.
The door itself was marked with the inscription: “Bow all ye who dareth enter!” He shrugged and strode in.
For all the fuss around the entrance, the interior was rather spartan - a small, plain room with but one chest. Conall pried it open, and looked inside. A simple mirror greeted him, his surprised face reflected on its surface.
“Man, am I stupid” he thought.
“Well, it IS the mightiest tool indeed” the voice of his employer, the mysterious warrior spoke. “As long as you don’t yield to them, they cannot control you. You are the grain of sand in the gears. Now, listen…”
One by one, he brought exceptional individuals to think, and to play the proverbial monkeywrench in the engine. And the curse of thought spread. Yes, he did cheat - a few of the brigands, anarchists, dissidents and ne’er-do-wells were sired by him, but then, he held the right character traits, and found the act of love, though through the proxy of his puppet body, to be rather enjoyable, and a moment where otherwise repressed people do act free… and a possible starting point of liberation if they don’t. Plus, as he’d put it “a (removed colloquialism for female external geniatal) given freely is not a (removed colloquialism for female external geniatal) to be refused.”
This is the state of affairs as of today - a mysterious heretic noone seems able to kill preaching “kick your lord goodbye”, while every usurper (king), extortion company (state) and fraud (cleric) who came across him wants his head on a silver platter.
Refusing to take anyone seriously, he’s the joker in knightly armour, speaking in three layers of irony, provocative and utterly self-confident. Besides having fun, he’ll try to make people cast avay the blindfold and see, grasp and think.
Yeah, we know it’s hopeless.
Likely, he will appear either as antagonist for loyalist PCs, a guru, or a force that drives heroes to excel… challenge after challenge until they are grown and ready to see.