by Trotsky

Kemlar the Guide

Patron God of the Northwest Jarin

Guide of the Forebears, Hanuhn-of-Hanuhns, Speaker in Dreams, Voice of Yashain

Demigod [1]

The Kubora desrcibe Kemlar as a dark skinned man, clearly not of Jarin ethnic stock and wearing pure white robes of a design unknown on Harn, yet clearly tattooed in the Kuboran style. In lieu of weapons he carries a wooden staff six feet or so in length, decorated with intricate carvings of animals and plants. [2]

Kemlar the Guide was a great prophet who appeared to the ancestors of the Kubora nearly two thousand years ago, and lead them to their present lands from the forests of the east. In life, he possessed great magical powers, being able to take on the form of forest animals, cause vegetation to magically appear from the ground, and to communicate with others over vast distances. In addition he possessed prophetic powers that enabled him to avoid or deal with dangers along the route to the new land. When he eventually left his mortal body behind, he crossed over to Yashain, and became a god, and the greatest chieftain of the land of the dead. He still sends messages to his mortal followers in their dreams when particular dangers threaten.

Source: Kubora 1-4, Harnplayer pp60-61

Heneryne the Golden

Fertile Mother, the Compassionate Goddess, Bringer of Rain, Plague Witch

Kuboran demigoddess

After Kemlar departed this world for Yashain, he married this goddess to secure future prosperity for his followers. Already known to the ancestors of the Kubora before Kemlar's time, she has three principle aspects. The first, and most widely known aspect, is that of peace, healing and the harvest. In this form, she is often identified with Peoni by outsiders or missionaries who fail to understand her full role. Secondly, she is a goddess of human fertility and sexuality and also the power behind intoxicating drugs, most notably alcohol. Finally, she is at times, a wrathful goddess, just as women can shame their menfolk to action by their scornful derision. In this aspect, she brings plague, lightning and damaging storms.

Crador the Blind

(titles vary from tribe to tribe)

Kuboran demigod

Crador is an unusual deity, and is associated with different powers by different tribes. Among a few tribes, such as the Asawne, he is regarded as a benevolent deity, the protector of fools and children. To the Obodu, he is an evil figure, bringing nightmares and unexpected disasters to all on whom his attention his focussed. Among the Rathiri he is seen as a madman, who can bring either good or evil with little pattern or sense. Among other tribes, such as the Iorzu, he is a reluctant prophet who can only forsee disaster, or he may be almost uninterested in human affairs, as among the Delerni. Among the sea-faring tribes he is often associated with that element, blamed for bringing unexpected storms among the Nolgind or associated with mysteries of the deeps by the Tiraen. Among the Denal, he is a marsh spirit, leading the unwary to their doom or allowing lost travellers to miraculously find their way without being sucked down, depending on his whim.

What the Shaman Says

Where did the world come from?

The First Gods separated the world from the empty void, creating the land, the sea, the sun and moon, and the winds. Although there was nothing living anywhere on the face of the world, the Gods believed they had finished their creation. The world existed in this way for some time before the Gods realised something was missing.

Then they created the plants, and the fish, and the birds and the beasts of the earth. Things crawled, and swam, and flew and once again, the Gods believed they had finished their creation. The world existed in this way for some time before they realised that something was still missing.

In the world up until this time, everything had existed without purpose, and was mindless, doing only what the Gods willed it to do. Even the animals were mindless, and could do nothing on their own. So the Gods separated pieces off from themselves and created the spirits, and placed them into the world, inhabiting all the animals, and the plants, and even the rocks and the rivers. Once that had happened, the Gods realised that the world was indeed complete, and that they had finished their creation.

Where did I come from?

Some of the spirits that the Gods created were our ancestors. Although we are descended from Gods, they no longer look after us, because they placed the world in our hands when they created us. Then they retreated to Yashain, the place beyond the spirit world, where they remain, contemplating us but no longer interfering in our affairs.

Why am I here?

Kemlar's last words before he passed over to Yashain were "Battle the land and thy brethren, and those of they kindred that stayed behind, for in clean strife shall thy heart be joyous, and the hand grow harder."

We are here to make ourselves stronger, and to prove our worth. Without struggle, life becomes meaningless and empty, an endless tedium in which there can be no joy. Without conflict and hardship, nobody can appreciate the relaxation that comes with drink, laughter and companionship. Yet struggle is not everything, for we must fight honourably and obey the rules of our people. Without order and honour, we would be no better than beasts, unable to work together and weak enough to be destroyed by any enemy who could gather together to attack us. These bonds of society are just as important for companionship and a joyous life as conflict is. The wise man knows how to balance the two.

What happens after we die?

When you die, your spirit will travel to Yashain to continue its life there. Yashain is a good place, with many animals to hunt, and wild plants to eat. Our enemies cannot trouble us, for only those who are worthy will be able to travel there. Those who have committed wrongs or proven to be cowards or other unworthy people, will not be able to travel to Yashain, and will instead remain trapped in the spirit world, becoming malicious ghosts who try to harm the living out of spite.

It is important that our souls are well prepared before making the journey. Thus, when we die, we are buried with our possessions, which we will be able to use on the other side. When people are not buried in this way, they will find things very difficult on Yashain, even though it is a more hospitable place than this world. The greatest chieftains are buried with the best goods, to ensure that those in the otherworld know their importance and status.

Yashain is ruled by Kemlar, who is therefore known as the Hanuhn-of-Hanuhns, although such is his skill and power that he can act as warchief too. Struggle does not stop in the afterlife, for to do so would be as pointless as it would be in this world. But the suffering that sometimes comes from struggle, such as infected wounds and the loss of comrades, does not occur for all who die are reborn the next day, and wounds heal magically every time you sleep.

Even women find things good in the afterlife, for only worthy men are found there. They have to work to wrest food from the wilderness, for that is their part in the struggle of existence, yet there are no great famines, and no plagues so everyone can be happy that their work has been well done.

What can you tell me about magic?

Some people have special talents that let them see into the spirit world, and to communicate more easily with Kemlar or Heneryne. By dealing with spirits, they can perform many deeds similar to those performed by Kemlar, although of course, noone can equal his skill or power. In our tribe, the Obodu, such shamans may chose to use the powers of either Kemlar or Heneryne, by learning which kind of spirit they deal with best. But this is not true in all tribes, and a few are even said to deal with Crador's wicked spirits, and so drive themselves mad in consequence.

What of the other gods? What can you tell me about... [3]


Larani is an enemy of the southron god Agrik, and is worshipped by those who live further south still. She claims to be different from him, but in reality there is little difference, for both seek to enslave others to their service. Her warriors must be weak indeed to obey the commands of a woman!


This is the goddess worshipped by the slaves of the southron warriors. She may be a sister of Heneryne, but by choosing slavery over honest struggle, she proves herself weak and irrelevant.

Save K'nor

This is another god of the southrons, who claims to posess great wisdom. In reality, he may just be their name for Crador, for he provides no knowledge of real benefit and many of his followers are fools rather than wise men.


One of weaker of the First Gods decided to remain here on Kethira rather than leaving for Yashain with the others. Convinced that the world is still not complete, he dwells now near the centre of Harn, constantly creating new beings to send out across the land. In this he is mad and pitiable and worship of him is misguided at best.


A goddess worshipped only by the weakest of people, who cannot even fight for themselves. Her followers are all women, or else soft men who always do the bidding of women. They waste themselves in debauchery, and only the decadent society of the southrons could allow them to survive at all.


The yellow-haired men who come from the east follow this god, who is at least a noble warrior and a worthwhile opponent. It may be that on Yashain, our people battle his, for that would be a good battle. None the less, we must not forget that these people are outsiders, and they lack the respect for other life that Heneryne would teach them, instead carving their forts from the wilderness as the southrons do.


This is another god with strong warriors, but unlike the followers of Sarajin, his people know nothing of honour, placing combat as a virtue above all others. Although they may be strong individually, they are weak as a group, for they are always tempted to fight others within their own tribe, and their cheiftains have difficulty making their people obey them. This is why they fell so swiftly to Arlun, and why they would fall again if we wished it.


This god is even more wicked than Agrik, despising all virtue. His followers are cowards who skulk in the shadows, and who think nothing of the vilest acts. They willingly desecrate the tombs of the dead, murder their own fellows and mate with animals.

The Urdu

These 'left-behind' people follow Kemlar as we do, and are worthy opponents in battle. Their weakness is that they allow their women to dictate much that they do, which is why Kemlar chose not to bring them beyond the Chetul river to the true promised home of our people. They also know nothing of Heneryne, and so find life harder than it need be, having to survive solely on what they can find in the forests.

The Equani

These people were so crude and violent and had so little understanding of honour, that Kemlar left them behind even before the Urdu. Unable to learn the rules of basic human behaviour that he tried to teach them, they are little better than beasts, although they are said to be deadly warriors.

[1] Despite Kemlar's importance, he was once a mortal, and hence cannot be a Lesser God.

[2] We do not know his description from the source material, although he clearly is not Jarin. I've decided to make him black so that his non-Jarin origin is particularly obvious, but there is no particular evidence for (or against) this theory in the published material. The description given here is intentionally not identical with that of the Urdu or Equani.

[3] The Kubora have historically had more contact with civilised nations and their priests than any of the other Harnic tribal nations. Even so, their contact with worshippers of Siem and Naveh has been almost non-existent.

To the Kubora shamans page

This document was created 18th October 1998 by Jamie 'Trotsky' Revell. Comments are welcome.