If I remember correctly, (and if I hadn't then it wouldn't exactly be the first time), early sources on Morokanth (the 2nd edition RQ rules, Cults of Prax) don't mention that the Morokanth's human-looking herd are really Gern. So what Chris suggests is that this old Cults of Prax idea lives on, in part, as a rumour is rumoured to still have some truth in it by the other tribes
Presumably Gern are not much good to other Praxian tribes as slaves/prisoners of war as beasts of burden or as a source of leather or food, (though maybe the odd canny Sable knows an Etyries merchant with a decadent clientele that pay top dollar for unusual book-bindings, "Pol Joni" boots and 'long pork'). How does this affect their value when clans trade captured herd beasts?
Slightly later write-ups of Waha magic (Gods of Glorantha; can't remember if it was retained in Mongoose RQ) suggest that there is a Waha-specific runespell/feat which curses a sentient being with the loss of sentience (and a corresponding blessing to awaken intelligence in a herd beast, though personally I quite liked the old Cults of Prax idea that this blessing was bestowed upon the herd beasts of 'rune level' Waha cultists when the cultists receives their allied spirit). If it is known that your own clan shaman's most potent curse is to do this, doesn't it follow that the shamans in the Morokanth tribe can probably do the same?
Would this undermine fear of Morokanth Ogres? Or is this too lavish a use of magic for dinner? Alternatively is there a hint that the Morokanth are sufficiently sick to eat sentient beings -- more like Ogres or Ghouls than other Praxians.
Would the "Morokanth Ogre" do the Peaceful Cut first -- and would the Morokanth really be doing the deceased a favour if they did, if it meant that the deceased's soul was returned to Eiritha to be reborn as a Gern?
Are the Cannibals a "cult" (which crosses tribal lines), or are they basically a lesser independent tribe?
There is a lot to like about Chris's alternative myth for the Cannibal Cult -- that these master-hunters decided that the Survival Covenant was for losers who couldn't cut it as hunters -- but does it explain why the rest of Prax still tolerates them?
Maybe the prosaic truth is that their elite members are still individually very powerful, with the result that anyone trying to eradicate them would face heavy losses for little reward (other than getting raided by other tribes taking advantage of the losses the tribe waging war on the cannibals had taken in the process), with the result that nobody bothers? (After all it is largely a similar logic which stops the Morokanth from going the way of the Lascerdans, even though they are unusually unpopular with the other tribes, even by Praxian standards ...)
Or is that not mythical enough for Glorantha?
From: Chris Lemens <chrislemens_at_NmfihV8ELhCZiT5RDiGOGzq2C5MeKaSy34j6WkM8czNY452e7Jp4Rkq70gj7ZSn6qNTSU3wMLPp-ffM.yahoo.invalid>
Sent: Saturday, 18 February 2012, 18:10
Subject: Re: Bestiality in Prax?
There is some value to this approach, but I'd be guided by MGF. I'd certainly let the players think that one bite of human meat turns you into an ogre. But if that's so, then you definitely want rumors of Morocanth ogres. ("They only pretend to turn people into gern, you know.")
> But what about the Cannibal Cult, which commits cannibalism but is not 'objectively' chaotic?
> I think that perhaps normal Praxians (that is, non-cannibal cultists) consider the Cannibals
> chaotic. Or perhaps the Cannibal Cultists heroquested to establish their practices as
> sanctioned by Waha and therefore not chaotic (I seem to remember something about them
> claiming that Waha had allowed their rituals, so perhaps they have a myth/quest for it).
I think there is a different story about the cannibal cult. I think they are a pre-Waha group. They do not act contrary to the covenant. They never took part in the covenant, so would not be bound by it. My thought is that they are the ultimate expression of the hunter cult that Foundchild personally led up until the time he disappears. When Waha appeared, from their perspective, they simply didn't join up with the losers who were unable to feed themselves. They stuck to their true, traditional ways. Waha was the weird innovator.
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