Monday, 18 May 2015

The Targosites

The Targosites

Prehistory-draa11.jpg
Early depiction of a Veshtargosing, near Thurkeros
What the histories tell us

In the Darkness
The Veshtargosings move from the steppe into the Oslir Valley.  The Lenshis go still further, defeating the Kitargos tribe.  The Targosites factionalise, some adopting cannibalism, some enslaving reindeer herders.  The Hurfor Tribe free many reindeer from the Targosites.
The Hyalorings become more mobile, and even place a nomad emperor upon the throne.  He conquered the Veshtargos tribe.
Eusibus, a Targosite, was the last true Rider emperor of the Oslir Valley before the Full Dawning. 
The Sankenite revolt cast the Riders out of the Valley, and brought a far greater human population onto the steppe.

The First Age
~230      The Shadzoring remnant around Alkoth are shattered and join the refugees in Pent.
The Riders adopted their new lifestyle readily, although many of the refugees died in the early years.
They settle in a broad sweep across the Western and Central steppes, their range shifting and extending over the course of the Age, eventually discovering the Hot Lake and setting up several semi-nomadic kingdoms there.

The Second Age
~500      The nation of Velthil arises, a land with joint Pentan and Rinliddin heritage.
~570      Kastok leads an army of peasant horsemen onto the steppe.    
~700      The north-western clans are in conflict with Althil.
~750      The Korer gain their independence.  Velthil begins significant expansion. 
~830      The Korer begin westward expansion into Karasal.  Velthil expands up the White Sea coast.
~900      The north-western clans are in contact with Althil, Velthil and the Rinliddi.  The easternmost clans are in contact with the Kingdom of Wisdom.
1051       Senbar spills demons, ghouls, and the Huan To onto the steppe.
~1070    Dara Happa conquers the Korer & the western province of Velthil.  Velthil is split into two, with a more pro-Dara Happan regime in Althil. 
1122       Althil applies for membership of the Empire.  Northern clans skirmish with the Blue Moon Digijelm.  Eastern clans are in frequent contact with Chern Durel.
1127       The Empire conquers Velthil

The Third Age
~1210    Velthil struggle against the Empire’s Carmanian overlords.
~1220    The nomads on the borders are dominated by Velthil in the north, and the Char-Un in the south.
1228       Duke Nandelus hires the Char-Un and their allies to fight the growing Lunar power.  The Lunars win and force the Char-Un to service.
1355       Sheng achieves leadership at a Great Contest.
1356-1460   Selerite Empire
1461-4   Pentans driven out of Lunar lands.
1470s/80s            Hon-Eel’s magical contests with the northern Redlanders.
1503       Pentans returned to Oraya
1506       Nights of Horror.  The Redlands are abandoned to the Lunars




What we can know from these histories and our other sources

The Targosites are possibly the most powerful and significant of the peoples who make up the Pentans, strong in number, myth and history.  Whether Efertagos, Kitargos, or Veshtargos, their imprint lies heavily upon Dara Happa.  Targos himself is still worshipped in Alkoth under the name of Turrogus, Horselord of Shargash, and the Shadzoring remnant remember their homes in tale and myth.  Much of the style and rage of Alkoth is mirrored in Targosites.
They are feared in many places, and hated in almost as many more, as slavers with an ogrish tendency.

Their Culture

Visitors to the Targosites are often surprised at what they find – a people whose myths and culture are remarkably similar to some of those of Dara Happa, and whose clothing is a mimicking of ancient styles from Alkoth.  Their songs have elements of Naverian and Dikorian styling, as do the Lenshi, but entirely unlike the Hyalorings and Hirenmadorings.
They have a strong affection for tales of Eusibus, and similarly execrate the name of Khordavu.

Targosite homes take the form of tent pieces built around support poles to house as many family members as are present, from 1 to 100.  They are decorated with paintings of horses and hunting.

Their clothes are made of cloth and felt in the west and north, silk and felt to east and south, but their styles differ quite dramatically from other Pentans.  The Targosite male appears to be in armour of Pre-Dawn era Alkoth, this seeming being by means of dyeing and embroidery, not dissimilar to the many popular depictions of Shargash and his associated deities.  Their hats are cuirboilli imitations of Alkothing high-tiered helmets.   Similarly the Targosite female wears the traditional short tunic of Biselenslib, albeit over trouser and jacket, and a leather cap with horse-hair braids to resemble the ancient Henjarli style.
Both genders wear reed sandals by summer, heavy hide shoes for the rest of the year.

Their warriors frequently place charms into felt 'spires' atop their horses' heads.

While it is true that there is still some cannibalism within their customs, it is rendered free from chaos-taint by religious ritual and historical context.


Targosite horse depicted on an Orayan stele

Their Religious Traditions

Path of Fire Tradition  [Fire, Horse]

Mythos and History
Kargzant is the One True Sun, and this was revealed in the Darkness when he rode high whilst other contenders for the title were obscured or diminished.  He made the Starlight Ancestors and is thereby lead stallion for both the Great Herd in the sky, the Horse Herd in Glorantha, and the Human Herd, or Riders.  His enslavement of weaker peoples and his ruthless raiding largely defined the Darkness, and his unrestrained victories define our present. 

Nature of the Cult
The primary male Targosite way of being.

Depiction
None needed.  He is the sun.

Particular Likes and Dislikes
Favours the other spirits followed by Targosites, dislikes both Dara Happans and Lunars, and despises those who worship any reindeer spirit..

Cult Organization and Holy Places
The cult is based around power, with shamans acknowledging the status of their fellows, and each being the centre of a small band of followers and apprentices.
The Holy Places are those acknowledged by all solar Pentans.

Holy Days
Clan, Tribe and Arrow dependent.

The Kargzant Spirit Society (Fire, Horse)
The Spirits of the Society are not to be lightly used, since they are of the Sky Herd closest to Kargzant himself.  Leaders usually leave them untouched if other powers may accomplish the task.

Imperial Sun Spirits (Fire) – These spirits can blaze with the brightness of the noonday sun, and can be released to drive off lesser solar powers.  They are the sign of the true Khan.
The taboo is Never Refuse A Challenge

Slavechaser Spirits (Fire) – These spirits can be used to chase down runaway slaves, or to terrorise a cornered foe into surrendering without resistance.
The taboo is Never Submit To A Foreigner

Stallion Spirits (Horse) – These spirits can strengthen a mount in every physical way, can defend it against magic, and can enable it to leap to the horizon, run on a sunbeam, or to leap a wall.
The taboo is Always Care For Your Mount’s Needs Before Your Own


Path of Fire Tradition
To join the Tradition, you must first have a Fire Rune.
For game purposes, any hero with a Fire Rune can join the Tradition at the same rating as their Fire Rune. Simply add Path of Fire Tradition (Fire, Horse) keyword after the Fire Rune.
When joining the Tradition, you receive a number of charms, as described in the HeroQuest core rules (page 112). Charms of the Tradition are chosen from amongst the spirits of the clan’s Spirit Societies.
Sun Stallions –Path of Fire Shamans

After decades of experience, a worshipper with Tradition rating of 11W or higher can become a Sun Stallion, a shaman of the Path of Fire

The Seeker’s Test is a re-enactment of Kargzant’s struggle with the raging giant.   If the Sun Stallion-to-be succeeds, then he discovers his Denbitos-self.

The Fetch
The Denbitos-self manifests as a silhouette of starlight around the Sun Stallion.  
The Sun Stallion performs all the functions of a fetch (cf. HeroQuest pg. 114)

Sun Stallions have access to the other spirit societies of the Tradition.

Dog Star Spirits (Star) – these stellar spirits can track invisible paths and through the spirit world, and can savage other spirits.

Star Captain Spirits (Star) – these can guide the way and keep up spirits in the darkness. 

Spirits of Reprisal

The apostate will appear fringed with black to any form of spirit vision.  Reprisal belongs to the clan.

Path Spirits
                                                                Targosite Names
Imperial Sun                                           Kargzant
Leader                                                     Hestus
Elder                                                       Targos
Warrior                                                   Kuranits
Hunter                                                     Keternung
Dog                                                         Dogstar
Hawk                                                      Karesk

While Dog and Hawk can each be followed on their own, they are frequently combined, or followed alongside another from the Path, dependent upon local custom.

File:Assyriancavalry.JPG
The Shadzoring exodus fighting its way free to join their kin on the steppe
Path of Earth Tradition  [Earth, Horse]
Mythos and History
Zatenia was wife to Hestus, and the White Lady of the Sky People.  She has few myths, since her holiness kept her separate from the corruption of the Darkness, but her compassion was what pulled her from the Sky Realm to care for the people and horses maimed by chaos.  She is named in several prophecies as the White Moon Mare that will leap into the Sky again, bringing her simple and pure glory to all the world again.

Nature of the Cult
The primary female way of being amongst Targosites
Depiction
A majestic silver mare, usually made from tin or silver.
Particular Likes and Dislikes
Favours the other spirits followed by Targosites, and pities all others.
Cult Organization and Holy Places
The cult is rigidly hierarchical, with senior shamans having absolute power over those beneath them.  They meet in annual conclave to decide on clan policies.
The Holy Places are those acknowledged by all Pentans.
Holy Days
Clan, Tribe and Arrow dependent.

The Zatenia Spirit Society (Horse, Moon)
These spirits are the great and powerful herd mothers of the past, empowered still further after death by Zatenia herself.

Silver Spirits (Horse) – These spirits can enhance the beauty and power – including fertility – of a mare.  The taboo is Defend The Herd

White Spirits (Horse) – These spirits can be used embody a herd mother into the lead mare or to glow in the night, leading the herd and clan through the darkness.
The taboo is Never Light A Torch

Compassion Spirits (Moon) – These spirits see the inner pains of horse or human, and can bring healing to those filled with fear or inner anguish.
The taboo is Always Compassionate

Path of Earth Tradition
To join the Tradition, you must first have an Horse Rune.
For game purposes, any hero with a Horse Rune can join the Tradition at the same rating as their Horse Rune. Simply add Path of Earth Tradition (Earth, Horse) keyword after the Horse Rune.
When joining the Tradition, you receive a number of charms, as described in the HeroQuest core rules (page 112). Charms of the Path of Earth Tradition are chosen from amongst the spirits of the Clan’s Spirit Societies.

Horse Wives –Path of Earth Shamans

After decades of experience, a worshipper with a Tradition rating of 11W or higher can become an Horse-Wife, a shaman of the Path of Earth.

The Seeker’s Test is a nocturnal Vision Quest, wrapped inside the skin of a freshly flayed mare.   If the Horse-Wife-to-be succeeds, then she discovers her Golden Mare.

The Fetch
The Golden Mare manifests as a Spirit Mare of breath-taking beauty.   She performs all the functions of a fetch (cf. HeroQuest pg. 114)

Horse Wives have access to the following spirits.

Spirit Horses (Horse) – These enable control of horse spirits and the riding of Spirit Horses.
                                                The taboo is Never Kill An Healthy Horse
Spirits of Reprisal

The apostate will be thrown by any horse they try to mount

Tradition Spirits
                                                                Targosite Names
First Wife                                                Zatenia
Great Mare                                              Lorest
Spring Horse                                           Arginu
Teacher                                                   Tarmenu
Crone                                                      Oijampek

The Dawn & Dusk Tradition  [The Runes of the Spirit Society the character intends to join]

Nature of the Cult
A collection of various spirit cults bringing purpose and life to those who cannot, or will not, follow the major paths.
Depiction
Varies with the Spirit Society & the clan.
Particular Likes and Dislikes
Favours Pentans, especially those of the clan.  Otherwise neutral.
Cult Organization and Holy Places
There is a distinct lack of organisation within the cult, with local and wandering shamans leading rites when called upon, or at their whim. 
Holy Places vary with Spirit Society & clan.
Holy Days
Dependent upon the individual shaman.

Path of Dawn & Dusk Tradition
To join the Tradition, you must first have a Rune connected to one of the Spirit Societies.
For game purposes, any hero with a such a Rune can join the Tradition at the same rating as that  Rune. Simply add Path of Dawn & Dusk Tradition (chosen Rune) keyword after the Rune.
When joining the Tradition, you receive a number of charms, as described in the HeroQuest core rules (page 112). Charms of the Dusk & Dawn  Tradition are chosen from those of the chosen Spirit Society.

Unseen – Path of Dusk and Dawn Shamans
After decades of experience, a worshipper with a Path of Dawn & Dusk Tradition rating of 11W or higher can become an Unseen , a shaman of the Path of Dawn & Dusk.
The Seeker’s Test – The  candidate must arrive unnoticed on the day of a ceremony and make their way through the clan camp unchallenged.  If they participate in the ceremony without detection by any but the shamans present, they awaken their Wanderer.

The Fetch
The Wanderer is a copy of the shaman, with a blank for a face.  The Wanderer  performs all the functions of a fetch (cf. HeroQuest pg. 114)
The Unseen have access to all of the spirits within the Tradition and
Wanderlore Spirits (Movement) – These enable the shaman to move tirelessly, spot any danger on their way, cope with foreigners, and to recall facts long forgotten concerning what they are encountering.  The taboo is Never Admit To Ignorance

Spirits of Reprisal
Over the course of a season one side of the apostate’s body will turn ashen grey.  Only return to the fold will reverse this change.

Tradition Spirits

                                                                Targosite Names
Throat Singer                                          Duyadoya
Body Marker                                           Oigirkuru
Foresight & Death Talker                       Tunal & Yunal
Outsider                                                   Folarene
Hammerer                                                Badask


The Path of the Storm Tradition  [Storm]
Mythos and History
While the spirits gathered into this Path had long been followed by the People, most of their natures had been misunderstood, and they had been viewed as hostile or distorted spirits that were independent of any Tradition.  It was only after the Nights Of Horror, as the People sought for spirits with whom to take refuge, that they were perceived as being worthy of a Path of their own.
Nature of the Cult
A refuge for those who have not found the Path of Fire an adequate answer to the Lunar challenge..
Depiction
Four horsemen, armed with Lance, Sword, Axe and Darts.
Particular Likes and Dislikes
Favours the Path of Earth, pities the Path of Fire, and hates anything Lunar.
Cult Organization and Holy Places
There is a distinct lack of organisation within the cult, with local and wandering Winds lead rites when called upon, or at their whim.  Followers may choose to attach themselves to a Wind, or to stay within their community. 
Holy places are locally deduced by experiencing a daytime darkening of the sun.
Holy Days
At the local Wind’s whim.

The Path of the Storm Tradition
To join the Tradition, you must first have a Storm Rune.
For game purposes, any hero with a Storm Rune can join the Tradition at the same rating as their Storm Rune. Simply add Path of the Storm Tradition (Storm) keyword after the Storm Rune.
When joining the Tradition, you receive a number of charms, as described in the HeroQuest core rules (page 112). Charms of the Tradition are chosen from amongst the spirits of the Spirit Societies present in the clan.

Winds – Path of the Storm Shamans
After decades of experience, a worshipper with a Tradition rating of 11W or higher can become a Wind , a shaman of the Storm.
The Seeker’s Test requires exposure to the storm that was their primary Spirit Society.  If the Wind-to-be succeeds, then they discovers their Tempest.
The Fetch
The Tempest manifests as a seething cloud above the Wind’s head.   The Tempest performs all the functions of a fetch (cf. HeroQuest pg. 114)

Spirits of Reprisal
The apostate will attract the interest of every Storm spirit near them.  Life will be a miserable struggle, simply to keep on one’s feet.
File:Assyrian horsemen arabs.png
Followers of the South Rage Wind strike down chaos-warped forces out of Than Ulbar

Tradition Spirits
                                                                Targosite Names
Leader                                                  West King Wind
Warrior                                                 North War Wind
Whispering Wind                                 South Rage Wind
Body Marker                                        East Sting Wind




The Path of Hell Tradition  [Underworld]
Nature of the Cult
A collection of various spirit cults which are regarded with fear and trepidation by most Targosites
Depiction
Varies with the Spirit Society & the clan.
Particular Likes and Dislikes
Favours Pentans, especially those of the clan.  Otherwise neutral.
Cult Organization and Holy Places
There is a distinct lack of organisation within the cult, with local and wandering shamans leading rites when called upon, or at their whim. 
Holy Places vary with Spirit Society & clan.
Holy Days
Dependent upon the individual shaman.

Path of Hell Tradition
To join the Tradition, you must first have an Underworld Rune.
 For game purposes, any hero with an Underworld Rune can join the Tradition at the same rating as that  Rune. Simply add Path of Hell Tradition (Underworld) keyword after the Rune.
When joining the Tradition, you receive a number of charms, as described in the HeroQuest core rules (page 112). Charms of the Path of Hell Tradition are chosen from those of the chosen Spirit Society.

Hellions –Path of Hell Shamans
After decades of experience, a worshipper with a Tradition rating of 11W or higher can become an Hellion , a shaman of the Path ofHell.
The Seeker’s Test is a voluntary journey to Hell, led, but not assisted by, their sponsor.   If the Hellion-to-be succeeds, then they discover their  Imp.

The Fetch
The Imp manifests as a darkness lurking behind the Hellion.   The Imp performs all the functions of a fetch (cf. HeroQuest pg. 114)

Hellions have access to the Spirits of other spirit societies of the Path of Hell Tradition.

Spirits of Reprisal
Spirit Society members will hunt the apostate down and slay them, very slowly. 


File:Babylonian - Female Mesopotamian Figure - Walters 481807.jpg
She of Wrath of the Targosites
Tradition Spirits
                                                                Targosite Names
Shadow Rider                                         Argoom
Wrath                                                 She of Wrath
Night Huntress                                        Yara

Argoom is frequently joined by warriors if they are going to be facing Hyalorings, and Yara by those rare creatures – clan huntresses.  Hunting by night they do not offend Kargzant’s sight.









Targosite Deities
Eater of the Dead                               Mother of Soul Eater
Underworld                                       3 Guardians and the Vile Demons
Vengeance                                         Gorgorma
Destruction                                        Shargash

Targosite Names

As spread out as they are, there is a lot of variation between the clans.  However, there are discernible patterns in terms of syllable structures.  One quarter  are of two and a quarter  of four syllables and half of three.

The syllables themselves differ between the things being named.
There has been a consonant shift from n to r as the clans have moved eastwards, and one from n to ng as they have moved northwards.

Male and ‘Other’  Initial Syllables
Oi-, Eus-, Tun-, Yun-, Fol-, Bad-, Ket-, Kar-, Kur-, Ki-, Tar-, Hest-, Vesh-

Male and ‘Other’  Middle Syllables
-an-, -ar-, -en-, -er-, -ib-, -kur-, -gir-, -tar-, -vent-
East: -ar-, -er-, -ib-, -kur-, -gir-, vert
North: -ang-, -ar-, -eng-, -er-, -ib-, -kur-, -gir-, -vengt-

Male and ‘Other’  Terminal Syllables
-e, -u, -al, -ask, -esk, -us, -er, -es, -gos, -its, -nung, -zant
East: -e, -u, -al, -ask, -esk, -us, -er, -es, -gos, -its, -rung, -zart
North: -e, -u, -al, -ask, -esk, -us, -er, -es,  -gos, -its, -ngung, -zang

Female Initial Syllables
Za-, Lor-, Arg-, Oi-, Fol-, Ya-, Gor-

Female Middle Syllables
-ten-, -in-, -en-, -jamp-, -ar-, -gor-
East: -ter-, -ir-, -er-, -jamp-, -ar-, -gor-
North: -teng-, -ing-, -eng-, -jamp-, -ar-, -gor-

Female Terminal Syllables
-ia, -est, -u, -ek, -e, -ra, -ma



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