The Chronicles of Erdon
The Legend of Gaulk
The Tale of How Myrdak Got Its Scar.
[img place holder: The Smiting of Gaulk Amidst His Horde and Victims]
According to legend Gaulk was a brutish warlord; a monstrous, gauth-headed ogremage, who particularly enjoyed bashing the skulls of helpless victims with his dreaded mace, and especially children and young maidens. But despite the song-worthy efforts of many a hero, and many an army, Gaulk and his terrible horde remained unvanquished. The great horde that followed the warlord worshipped him as a god, in accordance with his decree, for those who stood by him could only gain wealth and strength and power, but those who did not were put to the sword. And so Gaulk’s bestial warriors could not be overcome by any army they opposed, for they were thick as the sand, and Gaulk was not the only giant among them, though he was the most terrible. Though orcs and gnolls and hobgoblins and even ogres and trolls all numbered among the ranks, their fear of Gaulk and their lust for power kept them mostly in line so that even the most cunning assaults never routed them.
The corpses piled higher; and the blood stained even the bedrock, and saturated Gaulk’s great bloody mace; many a young hero fell by his hand, and all the people cried out in unison for justice. And so it was, that on a clear and cloudless day, as Gaulk and his minions were hewing and hacking their victims beyond reason or need, Myrdak passed overhead, betwixt earth and sky, and blotted out the sun. The despicable horde jeered and frenzied in victorious revelry, redoubling their merciless slaughter. Blood soaked the land. But the Storm Moon unleashed a terrific bolt of lightning, visible from half the world away, white and pure and true it was, that struck the monstrous Gaulk. From their own terrible warlord did the lightning chain across the whole horde, down to every last one of them so that they were all of them smitten dead.
So powerful was the Wrath of Myrdak that all of their corpses were made to be husks and shells: cinders and ash; even much of their armor and weapons were burned and melted. Some rumors however, suggest that certain powerful magic items – including Gaulk’s Blood Mace – survived the event, and became even more powerful, even artifacts of great and terrible power. Sometimes the legends speak of a warlord who found this artifact, and resumed Gaulk’s original ; they say the wielders were given great power, but became possessed and were driven mad by the Mace. More than a few would-be warlords must have believed these tales, for many have sought out the legendary mace, despite the curses ascribed to it, though thankfully few seem to have ever found it.