Marrow King Book One Summary
There was once a great king without a kingdom. The king sailed with his people on a few run-down ships, fleeing Revana from religious persecution and the tyranny of the Abaas and Patriarchs. , the Dawn God had sent him visions of a new land, one that would be rightfully his to rule, the land of Altor across the great ocean. It was a long and treacherous journey, for the Dawn God laid many obstacles in the path of the righteous to test their faith, maelstrom and maddening stretches of becalming alike. The pilgrims rejoiced when they landed on Altor and kissed the sand, the king helping his people ashore. They went inland, seeking the place the king saw in his visions, and at last found it. The Vale of the Sun, a fertile river valley overgrowing with evergreen trees, backed by impassable mountain peaks bursting with riches. A ferocious bear guarded the pass leading to the valley, and the king came forward to slay it in single combat, taking its likeness as his own sigil. was crowned king, and established a settlement with his people.
Soon, the natives of the land of Altor, the dawnfolk welcomed the natives, and for a time there was peace and trade among the peoples, and an attempt to learn each other’s ways and words. Some of King Altor’s blessed Arisen Knights and their disciples chose to go and stay with the natives, to save them by spreading the religion of the Dawn. The native chief found their religious fervour and their behaviour overbearing and dangerous, crucifying the Arisen and their followers, sending one last disciple back as a warning. Thus began war., found the king and his followers in the valley as they worked mightily to establish their kingdom and capitol of . The
In the first war the king was not ready. The natives possessed fine obsidian weapons and armour, they knew the land, and possessed vast numbers of cavalry, knowing when and where to ambush and strike. The king was defeated in a war of attrition, his men never able to inflict any kind of damage in many long years of seeking the enemy. Though the natives did not seek to destroy the dawnfolk, content to push them back to the Vale of the Sun, simply wishing to live as they always had, peacefully and without interference. The king licked his wounds and bided his time, seeking allies in the fair sea-queens of Lacera and the desert judges of Zakour. Alorn Torgond I was wed to of Lacera and made the generational oath, where the firstborn sons and daughters of noble dynasties in those kingdoms would always be wed.
In time, the king was ready for war once more. Leading a great host by land and sea he found the native sacred places and destroyed them, driving them back to their capitol, and finally overcoming and defeating them. The dawnfolk reclaimed the remains of the Arisen knights and slew the Lungael chief. They left nothing of the first people of Altor but ghosts and relics, desecrating their graves and holy places.
When King Alorn returned home, it was to find his firstborn son Beorn Torgond I. Over time his wife gave birth to Lorhan I, Feorn I, and finally their daughter Alena I. Beorn was wed to per the generational oath, and to secure the alliance of Zakour who coveted the obsidian mined from Altor, Alena was wed to . There was a time of prosperity for the kingdom as they mined the great mountains of the Vale of the Sun and uncovered a great horde of precious metals and jewels.
But it was not to last. A vile plague began to sweep through the kingdom. Many suffered and died, great lesions welling on their skin, their lungs filling with fluid. The people dismayed, and thought the plague as wrath from the gods of the vanquished Lungael. Fair Queen Telena, Prince Feorn, and Prince Lorhan were taken, and in far Zakour Alena died in childbirth, the babe perishing as well. King Alorn was inconsolable, and cursed the Dawn God for allowing the plague on his house, forsaking his religion. And in turn, the Dawn God cursed Alorn and his line. As the last remaining male of each generation would be cursed to undeath as the Marrow King, unable to pass on to the land of light, to linger damned in the world to reflect on their blasphemy. King Alorn died, becoming the first Marrow King, awaking in the dark not of his barrow, but of the last native fortress, a grim rock on the edge of the western sea. Beorn Torgond was left alone in the world unaware of his fate.