From the TUC Glossary - The Mysterious Deaths of 4121

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Mondoënghus

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« on: July 25, 2017, 07:51:09 pm »
Hello! This is my first post! Please excuse me if this has already been brought up somewhere and I just haven't seen it.

Like a lot of you, even though I finished TUC more than a week ago, the book clearly isn't finished with me yet. I keep rereading bits trying to understand just what the fuck happened, checking out theories and impressions on this forum, and combing through the updated glossary to find anything of interest. As it happens, I think I have found something in the glossary, a pattern. It might be nothing at all, or just a minor something with no overarching significance, but I though it worth detailing here to see what you guys think.

There are a number of minor characters from the original trilogy who get updated entries in the TUC glossary, reflecting an "offscreen" death, taking place in the time between the end of TTT and the start of TJE. Some seem are pretty random, but still of minor interest, like:

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Anissi (c.4089-4113) - The favorite wife of Cnaiür urs Skiötha.


Doesn't have much (any) bearing on the overall narrative, and there are no details given, but from the date of her death we can make inferences about the fate of a character we briefly got to know early in the story. I think we can all assume she didn't have a pleasant ending.  :(

There are others that, even if they aren't clearly marked as such, seem likely to have been casualties of the Unification Wars:

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Trondha, Safirig (4076-4117) Man-of-the-Tusk, Galeoth thane, client to Earl Anfirig of Gesindal

I don't remember this character but he is also mentioned in the TTT glossary. Obviously without a death date. We can assume that Trondha continued fighting with Kellhus' host as the First Holy War gave way to the Unification Wars. Again, no details are given, but we can make this inference fairly safely. There are a few other entries like this, some explicitly stating the character died during the UW, some not, at random years between 4112 and 4122, the official end of the war.

But as I was going through this, I began to notice two things - 1) there were a handful of characters that seem to meet very suspicious ends, and 2) that a bunch of these "offscreen" deaths, immediately suspicious or not, occurred during the same year: 4121.

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Hulwarga, Hringa (4086-4121) Man-of-the-Tusk, second son of King Hringa Raushang of Thunyerus, and leader of the the Thunyeri contingent of the First Holy War after the death of his older brother ... Found murdered in 4121, apparently at the hand of a jealous mistress, though rumors of sorcerous assassination persist.

Pretty juicy tidbit! Hulwarga definitely did not die in the course of fighting the UW, which had cooled off quite a bit by 4121 anyway. That there are varying accounts of the events regarding his death begs our attention and speculation. Is it just as simple as a jealous mistress? Can the rumors of sorcery be trusted? And if they can - what does that mean? By 4121, there are no mercenary schools. Which would suggest that if Hulwarga was assassinated by sorcerous means, then more than likely it had to have imperial sanction. But why?

One possibility, based on pure speculation alone (though if anyone can come up with textual evidence I'd very much like to see it) is that there was maybe some ongoing dynastic struggle between Hulwarga and his nephew, Vûkyelt, who was crowned the Believer-King of Thunyerus two years previously. Was Hulwarga jealous of his nephew's throne? Did he somehow poise a threat to the then still-fragile unification of (most of) the Three Seas? Did he harbor Orthodox sympathies? Without textual evidence I am inclined to doubt it. I am also inclined to doubt that he was simply murdered by his mistress.

If only because he isn't the only Veteran of the First Holy War to die under mysterious circumstances during the year 4121.

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Semper, Midru (4078-4121) - Man-of-the-Tusk, Ainoni Baron in the First Holy War, murdered by unknown assassins while sleeping in 4121.

OK, this guys doesn't even have an entry in TTT. Is he mentioned in the main text anywhere? (I only have print copies, so I can't so a quick search, sadly.) That he gets a mention here in this glossary is a bit odd, and the only thing I can think of is that we are supposed to take note of the year and manner of his death. "Unknown assassins", "4121". What's going on here?

If Semper is an unfamiliar name, here's one that should definitely ring a bell:

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Iryssas, Krijates (4089-4121) - Man-of-the-Tusk, young and impetuous major-domo of House Krijates ... Lost in calm seas off the coast of southern Conriya.

Would seem to be cut and dry. Minor character no one really cared about killed "offscreen" by, essentially, bad luck. People in the ancient and medieval world died at sea all the time, no big deal. Except the text here makes a point of noting that the seas he was lost in were "calm". That seems maybe unusual but certainly not unheard of or anything. But making that point expressly, along with the year it occurred (4121!), makes me think they we should definitely consider this another unusual death.

But maybe I'm making too much of this. Here's another famous name who died in 4121, certainly the most famous on this list:

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Yalgrota Scranchammer (4071-4121) - Man-of-the-Tusk, Thunyeri groom of Prince Hringa Skaiyelt, famed for his giant stature and ferocity in war.

We all remember the Sranchammer from the original trilogy. Seems death came swirling down for him in 4121 too, though no details are given. Was he hanging with Hulwarga when he bit it? You'd think they would just say that explicitly if that were the case. The safest bet would be to guess that he simply died during some action in the UW, which were still going on in Nilnamesh in 4121.

So maybe all these deaths in 4121 are just a coincidence? It's possible but I have found four more names that died during 4121, and a fifth that appears to be a mistake. There aren't that many of these "offscreen death" entries in the glossary, and yet 8 of them share the same year.

Here's a few more names, none have any details regarding their manner of death:

Kasaumki,  Memshressa (4072-4121) Man-of-the-Tusk, one of the Nascenti
Ottma, Cwithar (4073-4121) Man-of-the-Tusk, one of the Nascenti
Tûthorsa, Beotha (4089-421) Man-of-the-Tusk

Interesting that two of them are Nascenti. And, like all of the above, they are all Veterans of the First Holy War. Possibly they were killed in UW action, but it is worth noting again that Nilnamesh was the only hotspot during 4121, so it seems unlikley that so many of these veteran entries have the same expiration date. You'd think the dates would be more randomly distributed. I can't help but think that we are supposed to notice this date.

Before going on to speculate any further, let's take a quick look at two anomalies in the 4121 pattern.

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Kimish (4058-4121) - The Prime Interrogator to Ikurei Xerius III. Found dead in a ditch south of the Famiri frontier in 4121.


This is the only 4121 death that isn't a veteran of the FHW. I think we can assume however, given that the Nansur Imperial institutions welcomed Kellhus with open arms, that Kimish went on to serve the New Empire just as he had the Old. Interesting to note that he died in the Eastern Three Seas, in Famiri. I wonder what work took him there, so far from Momemn, and what if anything did it have to do with his death? Furthermore, it should be noted that all of those listed here are either from or were killed in the Eastern Three Seas.

One more anomaly, and it appears to be a typo, but one part gives me a bit of a pause so here it is:

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Hortha, Sunhail (4064-4121) - Man-of-the-Tusk, Galeoth knight, client to Coithus Saubon, whelmed as a Judge following the conquest of Shimeh, only to be found murdered in Aöknyssus under suspicious circumstances six months afterward.

The death date appears to be a typo, based on the entry itself. It is probably supposed to read "4064-4112". Six months after the fall of Shimeh is probably still in 4112, right? Either way, it sure ain't 4121. The only thing that gives me pause is that this is  the only entry to mention a 'suspicious death' outside of the handful of '4121' cases detailed above.

Probably just a coincidence, but I thought it worth noting.

So what, if anything, is going on here? I don't want to speculate too much but it really does seem as though we are supposed to be picking up on the fact that this one year keeps popping up: 4121. So what happened in 4121 that might be of significance? The final capitulation of High Ainon occurs this year, and with it a brief peace before hostilities seemed to heat up again down south in Nilnamesh. This was, of course, the the peace that allowed Kellhus the time to pick up a new hobby: The Daimos.

The Aspect-Emperor's four month stint under Iyokus's tutelage plumbing the depths of Hell seems to have been a very controversial, almost scandalous event. Kellhus doesn't talk about it much and we are told a handful of times how uneasy it made some of the faithful.

My speculation is this: all or most of the above characters were murdered due to either simply fiercely objecting to Kellhus' daimiotic work, or perhaps due to witnessing some aspect of it that warranted making sure they didn't pass along what they had seen. The suspicious and/or magical nature of the deaths indicates to me some official Imperial involvement. I don't think it's all just coincidence (or at least not in the main), and I don't think the Orthodox, or the Consult are responsible, if that were the case you'd think we would just be told that outright. It's mostly intuition, I admit, but I believe Kellhus had all of these men murdered to silence them.

Given the importance of the Daimos to Kellhus' ultimate scheme to vanquish the Consult, this makes a lot of sense to me. If any of these men threatened his plans in anyway, no matter how loyal they may have been, I have no doubt that Kellhus would get rid of them ASAP.

Anyway, that's my idea. Please nit pick it and come up with better solutions to the problem if you can!


 
« Last Edit: July 25, 2017, 09:45:54 pm by Mondoënghus »
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themerchant

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« Reply #1 on: July 25, 2017, 09:16:24 pm »
That's a great catch, need to think on it more as didn't know about it till now :)

Yellow

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« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2017, 09:37:28 pm »
Ha, that's some seriously good detective work! No idea what the date signifies, except that something happened, and Bakker put a serious amount of work into the world that we don't even get to see.

Nice post, Mondoenghus  :)
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Woden

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« Reply #3 on: July 25, 2017, 09:42:14 pm »
Excellent post, Mondoenghus.
When reading the glossary I've notice only the strange death of Irissas lost in calm sea, but now what you say sounds like a kellhusian purge to me.
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ThoughtsOfThelli

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« Reply #4 on: July 25, 2017, 10:33:43 pm »
Great catch, I, like Woden, hadn't even really noticed any of those except Iryssas. It does seem like there was some sort of purge going on, all of those characters dying in the same year cannot be a coincidence. I wonder if they all knew something they shouldn't as you suggested, seems very probable.


Six months after the fall of Shimeh is probably still in 4112, right? Either way, it sure ain't 4121.

You are correct, Shimeh fell in the spring of 4112, so six months later would be in the autumn of 4112.


As for the other entries, I did notice poor Anissi when reading the glossary (maybe because it's an early entry), likely died at the hands of the Serwë skin-spy, no? That can't have been pleasant or quick. :(
Her daughter Sanathi also seems to have died at some point (when I first saw the death date for Anissi I went to check her entry too). Maybe she died in much the same way...
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« Reply #5 on: July 25, 2017, 10:46:28 pm »
Some good detective work here! Great post.
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Mondoënghus

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« Reply #6 on: July 25, 2017, 10:56:47 pm »

As for the other entries, I did notice poor Anissi when reading the glossary (maybe because it's an early entry), likely died at the hands of the Serwë skin-spy, no? That can't have been pleasant or quick. :(
Her daughter Sanathi also seems to have died at some point (when I first saw the death date for Anissi I went to check her entry too). Maybe she died in much the same way...

Hmmm, I forgot about Sanathi. Checking her entry (I have the UK paperback) it has her death date listed as "?". Does your copy say different?

If she isn't dead, I am sure she was "apportioned" to one of the "mightiest" of the Scylvendi just like the widows were when Cnaiür  first united the tribes, as mentioned in the "Upright Horn" chapter of TUC.

« Last Edit: July 25, 2017, 11:48:14 pm by Mondoënghus »
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Cüréthañ

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« Reply #7 on: July 25, 2017, 11:09:43 pm »
4113 would be when Cnaiur returned to the Scylvendi after Shimeh. I don't think being his favourite is much insurance against getting murdered by him or his pet Skin Spy.
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MSJ

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« Reply #8 on: July 26, 2017, 12:54:29 am »
Great find. And, i think you have the right of it that Kellhus had a hand in these murders. 👍
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« Reply #9 on: July 26, 2017, 04:03:51 am »
Loyalists.

Head on a pole behind him. Literal human sacrifices

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« Reply #10 on: July 26, 2017, 10:41:49 am »
4121 sure is an interesting year.  It is also the year that Kellhus takes to learning the Daimos.  Coincidence?  I very much doubt it.

I think it is the 100 moving against agents of Kellhus.
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ThoughtsOfThelli

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« Reply #11 on: July 26, 2017, 12:51:46 pm »
Hmmm, I forgot about Sanathi. Checking her entry (I have the UK paperback) it has her death date listed as "?". Does your copy say different?

If she isn't dead, I am sure she was "apportioned" to one of the "mightiest" of the Scylvendi just like the widows were when Cnaiür  first united the tribes, as mentioned in the "Upright Horn" chapter of TUC.

Mine says the same - she did die at some point, we just don't know when, or else only her birth year would have been listed.

It's possible she did become a wife/concubine to one of Cnaiür's allies like you suggested, and still died at some point before 4132.
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« Reply #12 on: July 26, 2017, 06:34:28 pm »
Welcome to the Second Apocalypse, Mondoënghus.

I'm with Woden and MSJ, 4121 has the earmarks of Kellhus consolidating power after the conclusion of the Unification Wars.
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False Man

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« Reply #13 on: July 27, 2017, 07:58:10 am »
Great find indeed.
I think there are other things like this in the Glossary, you don't write 200 pages of names and definitions without putting something juicy here and there.

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« Reply #14 on: July 27, 2017, 12:50:12 pm »
Great find indeed.
I think there are other things like this in the Glossary, you don't write 200 pages of names and definitions without putting something juicy here and there.

Yeah, I'm looking forward to losing myself therein over the next week.
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