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Humakti Lore

My dear Redondos,

The beloved Red Moon still shines only faintly on this, the [smudged] of Sedanya in the accursed highlands of Dragon Pass (we camp near the shanty town of Clear Wine), but my heart brims with hope that we will meet again when these cold and muddy lands are warm with her glow.

Our liberation program proceeds apace, though the locals are unusually thick and slow of understanding. Nevertheless, with the persuasion of a local librarian (still affiliated with the Lhankor Mhy cult, whose neutrality has recently become questionable, but I am working on winning him over), I have been able to obtain this document, exceedingly rare as it is among these illiterates, which I hope will shed some light on their methods of war.

As you know, military science is not my area of specialization, but I have been able to learn the following. The attached document is an annotated transcription of an original text which is significantly older (unfortunately it is not clear how much older, and we cannot consider the Lhankor Mhy datings authoritative, conscientious though they may be). We believe the damage to the text was caused by parasites. The original itself was also damaged, and it may have been edited in transcription as well. Certainly the transcriber expresses some exceedingly strong and in my view unsupported opinions regarding the original. The text itself shows some striking resemblances to the writings of our Sedanyan mystics, most notably the use of paradox and apparent contradictions. I struggle to think how such advanced thinking could have entered the Orlanthi lexicon. The second mystery regarding this text is of course the question of why and how it was put to paper. From my dealings with the Orlanthi I have learned that the Lhankor Mhy have a monopoly on writing (and quite nearly on reading as well); could it be that the Humakti had a Lhankor Mhy sage as part of their military organization, or were they committing heresy themselves? Who were the intended readers of these texts; indeed, what was the purpose of committing these thoughts, which could have been quite adequately conveyed to subsequent generations through oral tradition, to writing in the first place? Perhaps these are questions which you will see fit to answer more fully at the University.

Until then, and with fond hopes of our next meeting,

I remain yours under the Red Moon,

[burnt] of [smudged]


Humakt's Rules of War

The following text was copied from an original found recently at the Library in Boldhome. The original was written in several different hands, none of them, unfortunately, a qualified sage if we are to judge by the quality of the penmanship, and was badly damaged by fire. It appears that at least some of the sayings were coined by Efrodar Blackhands, the Humakti general, himself. Other sayings appear to be of highly questionable provenance as they demonstrate muddled and contradictory thinking. Nevertheless, we must record, classify, and catalogue! The Chief Librarian’s commentary follows. [smudged] Sharpquill, Chief Librarian of [burnt] and Sage of Lhankor Mhy, S.T. 1450

The Nature of War

Do what must be done for victory, no matter what the cost. This is the meaning of war.

When all else is dead, honor remains. Never sacrifice your honor.

Strike not the shield, but the sword. Stike not the sword, but the eyes. Strike not the eyes, but the heart.

Orlanth, the heart of conflict and movement. Humakt, the heart of honor. Ernalda, the abiding heart. Study this and learn the nature of victory. This appears to be some sort of commentary the Ernalda cult’s success in surviving different regimes; see also the author’s work “From Flamal to Orlanth: Divine Year-Husbands”.

Care for your weapons as the Allmother cares for her children. See to it that your weapons suit your foe. Know that your will is the true and only weapon.

Where there is no will to fight, there is no enemy. In destroying the enemy’s will for conflict, deception is sometimes more powerful than the sword, but in practicing deception it is easy to lose one’s honor, and where there is no honor there is no true life. Walk Humakt’s blade and cleave the difference.

To strike the enemy’s heart, you must be able to distinguish it from his sword. Know your enemy.

To know your enemy, you must meet him in battle. If you fight many battles, you will sometimes be defeated. Know that, sometimes, defeat serves victory. This is a great secret.

The Warrior's Heart

The Heart of Ice, for preparation and movement. The Heart of Fire, for the clash of arms. The Heart of Stone, always. Typical for a Humakti. However, there may be some ambiguity in the use of the term “stone”: See also “The Unmoving Heart” below.

An unusually lucid (e.g., “On Speed”) series of aphorisms follows, although the third (“On Skill”) is either a fake or an outrageous blasphemy.

On Strength
The thews of Urox, the hard edge of Humakt, the bounty of Ernalda.

On Speed
Yinkin's claws. Yavor's lightning. Lhankor Mhy's foreknowledge.

On Skill
Gustbran's hammer. Hu's sword. Eurmal's lie.

Three Kinds of Victory
The glorious victory of superior might. The pre-emptive victory of the weakened foe. The ultimate victory of the absent enemy.

Three Rules of the Champion
The chieftan and clan are counting on you to win. Do what must be done for victory.
You represent the clan’s honor. Do what must be done so that honor prevails. Muddled, muddled, muddled!
Learn from the Pit of Conflict: defeat the clan’s foes before they come to you.


It’s no use crying over spilt blood.

Measure twice, cut once.

A blade wielded in anger seldom cleaves true.
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