PEOPLE: Broyan and the Larnsti

From: Jeff Richard <richj_at_...>
Date: Mon, 8 Mar 2004 10:22:58 -0800

> >Perhaps Broyan's association with the Larnsti may be part of a
> >strategy to abandon notions of the Kingdom of Heortland with the
> >death of the Pharoah and insead opt for restoration the Hendrieki
> >tribe.
> Broyan isn't aiming for restoration of the Hendrieki tribe, he's
> aiming for rule over the entire Holy Country according to Greg.

I don't think that Broyan is "aiming for rule over the entire Holy Country" - are you basing this on the reference to Broyan being King of Kethaela in the Annotated Argrath Saga? Frankly, I don't think that Broyan has any interest in the Holy Country per se - definitely Heortland and maybe Esrolia, probably not the Shadow Plateau. Definitely not Caladraland, the Islands or God Forgot. However, following the Battle of Iceland, I think that Broyan is generally recognized as High King of the Hendriki (and of Heortland). As a result, he meets the qualifications for ruler of a Sixth and can enter the City of Wonders.  

However, I think that Broyan is aiming to restore the Hendreiki - in order to resist the Lunars. The parallels are too obvious, the geography and context are right, and - oh yes - he's the leader of the Larnsti.  

> >But if that restoration is his desire then he must be aware
> >that Hendriek's heir is found amongst the Larnsti, so Broyan must
> >become one of the Lanrsti (i.e. join their hero band) to qualify.
> The Larnsti isn't a heroband but fully fledged worship of Larnste.

Let's talk about the Larsnti for a moment. They exist in precisely three published sources: (1) G:IHW, (2) OiD; and (3) DP:LoT. Of these three, OiD is the most important.  

So what does G:IHW say?

"When Ezkankekko lived, the Hendreiki were a clannish folk with a king
who protected their freedom.  The king was chosen from among the
Larnsti, a magical brotherhood of wanderers Hendreik founded.  When the
Pharaoh came, he proved that King Andrin was an unjust ruler and slew
him, whereupon the Hendreiki disintegrated.  The Larnsti were unable to
contact their founder Hendreik and whenever they tried to appoint a
king, he was killed.  Civil war ravaged Heortland and many clans fled to
Dragon Pass to avoid the fighting.  Finally the Pharaoh admitted his
error and brought King Andrin back to life in a grand epic, restoring
peace to the Hendreiki..."
"King Andrin reformed the Hendreiki.  This had been done twice before
and so was not new.  He apportioned Heortland into Marches and appointed
Barons over them and four Earls to oversee the barons.  Since these
nobles wielded Henreik's Freedom, his successors would be found among
them and not the Larnsti.  THe silence of the Larnsti was worrying
enough but the king then announced that sheriffs, schools in Larnsti
magics, would replace the clan chiefs.  The clans were perplexed - on
one hand it struck at their clan traditions, which the God Learners had
never done, but on the other they were unwilling to do without the
blessings of the Larnsti.  They changed and were glad that the working
of the sheriffs was quiet and unobtrusive, like that of the Larnsti.
Yet with hindsight, the sheriffs were not fully-fledged Larnsti for they
could only change the clans in one way - by adopting Malkioni ways...."
"By royal decree, the sheriff himself is forbidden to serve in the army,
even though he is a knight.  One of his tasks is to prevent the land
from falling into anarchy when the army is away.  This provides
Heortland with some modicum of order despite the recent conquest.  One
further protection formerly enjoyed by the Hendreiki is almost gone: the
ancient Spirit of Hendreik that has protected them from conquest."
"As Orlanthi, the Hendreiki worship Orlanth and Ernalda as the king and
queen of the gods.  In addition, the old regime worshipped Free Hendreik
as the god of liberty who ensured the freedom of everyone in Heortland
so that they would never be conquered.  They even bought slaves and
manumitted from their owners so that the presence of an unfree person
would not pollute their land."
"Hendreik's secret lay in that he was a worshipper of Larnste, the god
of motion.  By remaining unfettered in thought and deed, no one could
ever subdue his people.  Although Hendreik embodied freedom, the Larnsti
were not restricted in the mysteries of the god they chose to study....
Because of [Larnste's] wound, the god and his followers who once
traveled throughout the entire world now cannot leave Heortland.  Only
one man, Sartar, managed to negate this curse - but once he left
Heortland he could never return."
This passage contains quite a bit of information for us.  
(1) The Larnsti are a magical brotherhood founded by Hendreik so that
his people would never be conquered.  This is strongly paralleled with
Broyan the Last Free King.  They are a heroband.
(2) The Larnsti are not restricted in the mysteries of the god they
chose to study - they worship freedom and liberty.  They are likely
initiates of Orlanth as well - in fact I see now reason why Free
Hendreik is not a subcult of Orlanth who then provides access to Larnst.

(3) King Andrin replaced the true Larnsti with Larnsti-lite.  The
sheriffs have weakened the Spirit of Hendreik.
(4) The Larnsti - and Broyan - cannot leave Heortland (which includes
the lands of the Volsaxar Confederation of the Bacofi, Curtali, Sylangi,
and Volsaxi - and once upon a time the Kultain).  Fortunately the Battle
of Iceland occurs in "Heortland".  This is a big reason why Broyan is
not more directly involved in Sartar's liberation.
The true Larnsti - like the Spirit of Hendreik - are almost gone.  IMO,
Broyan revives them and the Spirit of Hendreik.  This is an important
element of Broyansaga at Whitewall.  This may happen during the siege.
Proceeding on to source number two, OiD.  From that we know that:
"Broyan is fated to be the Last High King of Heortland.  He will die in
1625, so we recommend that the narrator reserve his personal hero band
(the 25 members of the Larnsti) as an exemplar rather than as an option
for player characters to join.  Even if the narrator does allow player
heroes to join, attaining this high honor is very difficult, and any
player hero will have to work up to joining the household of the High
Broyan is "Leader of the Larnsti 5M2"
We also know that a "Typical Larnst Warrior" has as keywords - "Warrior
7M2", "Escape 19 M2" and uses spear and javelins.
From OiD, I think it is safe to extrapolate that the Larnsti are
Broyan's personal heroband and that there are "25 members of the
Larnsti" left.  Most Larnsti have no Sartar-like changing magics, -
instead they are each the near-equivalent of a clan champion and have an
Escape ability (which is presumably a magical affinity).  This makes me
believe that the Spirit of Hendreik is the main source of cool Larnsti
magic.  The Spirit of Hendreik is the Guardian of the Larnsti.
Final source - DP:LoT.
In the glossary, Larnsti are described as "A magical brotherhood in
Heortland that works to liberate the people."
We also have the following:
"Gollanstead: Gollan was the Larnsti that stayed at home while his
family traveled.  Now, thousands of years after his death, his
descendents live here and his sons still live in the stead that wanders
this region."
This is easy to work in.  There is a magical stead that wanders this
region - sacred to the Larnsti - that is inhabited by the "sons of
DP:LoT reinforces the idea that the Larnsti are a magical heroband that
work to liberate the people.

> Look at Sartar's powers for an example of what Larnsti magic
> is like (break a tree into water, create flying fish, turn assassins
> termites, jinx shaman's drumbeat of power on KoS p133 alone).
No - look at Sartar's power for an example of what Larnste magic is like. Sartar was not the run of the mill Larnsti.
> Looking at Broyan's stats, his magic is Vingkot and nothing
> else.
He is leader of the Larnsti. Period.
> Broyan may be a worshipper of Hendreik Freeman as part
> of a political movement among the Larnsti but I doubt that all
> Larnsti share this belief.
On the contrary, I think that Hendreik Freeman is the Guardian of the Larnsti. Jeff [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

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