Cimmerian Timeline Part 38

Previous: Cimmerian Timeline Part 37

Here’s the story of Kruk-Ma-Kali condensed into timeline entries! As well as the conclusion to Shortrastor’s royal line. Of course more happens to Kharad-khor after Kruk-Ma-Kali’s death, but that will be covered another time.

722BCE: Kona-Ranor gave birth to Kruk-Ma-Kali.

710BCE: Kruk-Ma-Kali’s psionic powers emerged.

709BCE: Kona-Ranor noticed Kruk-Ma-Kali’s powers and sent him away to learn how to control them. Kruk-Ma-Kali joined the Shacklack School for Psions.

703BCE: Kruk-Ma-Kali left the Shacklack School for Psions with a journeyman’s understanding of telepathic magic.

702BCE: Kruk-Ma-Kali joined Lork-Bran-Dron’s army. He rose through the ranks quickly as Lork-Bran-Dron led the Goblinoids of Trung Town against Tomak’nax. During the Siege of Tomak’nax, Kruk-Ma-Kali found Kharad-khor. With the Sword of War in his hand, Kruk-Ma-Kali came up with a plan that enabled the capture of the city. At the victory parade, Kruk-Ma-Kali challenged Lork-Bran-Dron for control. He defeated his king and took the crown for himself. Kruk-Ma-Kali led his army on a conquering sweep of the Hobgoblin Lands.

701BCE: King Kruk-Ma-Kali used his secret telepathic powers to forge alliances. Kharad-khor provided the knowledge of how best to defeat those who would not be swayed. In two years of lightning campaigns, Kruk-Ma-Kali unified the Hobgoblin Lands under a single leader.

700BCE: Kruk-Ma-Kali began a long campaign in Eastern Cimmeria. His hobgoblin army marched through the Orc Lands to gain allies. The combined army of goblinoids and orcs attacked Valor Forest, but couldn’t penetrate the interior. Kruk-Ma-Kali took captives, including the elven mage, Sahamathrian. Kruk-Ma-Kali set fire to the forest and left. His army sacked Fangaroot and, thanks to Kruk-Ma-Kali’s telepathic mind, walked away with more troops than they started with.

699BCE: Bjorn Skizofren tricked Kruk-Ma-Kali, allowing Dalleer to be evacuated. Kruk-Ma-Kali burned the empty city and vowed to return to do the same to its people. He sacked Bradel Fields and placed it under occupation. The people of Eastern Cimmeria unified against the goblinoids. The year’s campaign continued as Kruk-Ma-Kali fought battle after battle towards Nomingburg.

698BCE: Kruk-Ma-Kali reached Nomingburg and placed it under siege. He defeated Nomingburg’s defenses by using portal magic to flood the city. Sahamathrian assisted with the portal ritual. Nomingburg was sacked and then abandoned to water and disease. Princess Alfeita died during the looting of Nomingburg.

697BCE: Kruk-Ma-Kali assaulted Jipangu at great loss of life. The goblinoids pillaged the city and occupied it. Kruk-Ma-Kali ordered the execution of all dwarves at Jipangu due to the casualties they had inflicted on his army. Next, Kruk-Ma-Kali led his people into the tunnels beneath the Dominarie Mountains on a genocidal extermination of the dwarves there.

696BCE: Kruk-Ma-Kali’s army ambushed and killed the remnants of the Dominarie army led by Queen Shortrastor. They continued on and reached Shortrastoria. The hobgoblins burned the capital. Princess Tandia entered labor during the fighting, but went missing shortly thereafter.

695BCE: Kruk-Ma-Kali’s army completed their west to east circuit of the Dominarie Mountains, having slain every dwarf they could find. Satisfied with the destruction of Eastern Cimmeria, Kruk-Ma-Kali led his people home to celebrate in the empire’s new capital, Trung Town.

694BCE: Kruk-Ma-Kali enacted many reforms to strengthen the Hobgoblin Empire and its capital, Trung Town.

693BCE: Kruk-Ma-Kali began planning a second long campaign in Eastern and Northern Cimmeria. Before the plans could be finalized, he was assassinated by a goblin servant wielding a poisoned dagger. The hobgoblin generals that Kruk-Ma-Kali had unified through his telepathic might split into warring factions. Overnight the Hobgoblin Empire became a set of squabbling states.

692BCE: Khuz-kukk-ghor and Vokh-jrozzhul began building a tomb for Kruk-Ma-Kali with the help of the elven wizard, Sahamathrian.

672BCE: General Graz-Khrodun emerged from the wars after Kruk-Ma-Kali’s death as the owner of the Trung Town capital.

670BCE: Work on the Tomb of Kruk-Ma-Kal was completed. Sahamathrian turned Khuz-kukk-ghor and Vokh-jrozzhul into undead guardians of the tomb as his last act to earn his freedom.
The elf went to Crux to learn the secret of becoming a lich.

640BCE: Graz-Khrodun’s daughter, Graz-Lokbar, ascended to the throne of “Emperor of the Hobgoblins.” Her charismatic pull actually made it seem that she could reunite the Hobgoblin Lands. Many unaffiliated goblinoids flocked to her banner at Trung Town

639BCE: Graz-Lokbar led her legion of goblinoids on an invasion of Dalleer’s territory. The Bjorn took the city’s army out and waited to ambush the hobgoblins. The enemy entered the kill zone, but the Bjorn refused to give the command to attack. The hobgoblins walked past the Dalleer army and raided villages. The Bjorn’s commanders were infuriated. They took the army into their own hands and vanquished the hobgoblin threat.
When the generals returned they conferred with the other authorities in Dalleer. They agreed the new Bjorn couldn’t be allowed to make decisions. The position’s power was reduced to that of ceremony while the civil servants would run the city from the shadows.
Graz-Lokbar returned to Trung Town in disgrace. Her magnetic personality brought her followers, but she had no skill in battle. The former capital of the Hobgoblin Empire entered a steep decline.

Next: Cimmerian Timeline Part 39

The Days of Kruk-Ma-Kali Part 11

Previous: The Days of Kruk-Ma-Kali Part 10

Kruk-Ma-Kali’s return to Trung Town was met by month long celebration. Captive slaves fought in mock battles to reenact the army’s victories. The food of Eastern Cimmeria was freely available to all. Kruk-Ma-Kali dispersed a purse of silver to every goblinoid that came to the city for the celebrations. The whole of the Hobgoblin Lands joined in honoring Kruk-Ma-Kali and his accomplishments.

The party also brought to light the deficiencies of Trung Town as a capital for the Hobgoblin Empire. Kruk-Ma-Kali decided to keep Trung Town as his capital and improve it. Several huge building projects were started simultaneously. The large structures included a royal palace, a massive arena, a huge bath structure, and several temples to the Animal gods. The population of Trung Town exploded, requiring the expansion of the city dwellings, business fronts, and storage for food and goods. The sound of construction filled Trung Town for many years after Kruk-Ma-Kali’s return.

Kruk-Ma-Kali began the sobering prospect of administrative reform. A new currency was minted from the precious metal treasures of the Conclave races. Kruk-Ma-Kali ordered the laws of the Hobgoblin Lands to be unified and codified. He provided generous subsidies for agriculture. Those who had served in the great campaign were given 25 acres of land each to start a farm or sell to fund a business. New recruits to the army were promised the same if they served well. The sun seemed to be shining bright on the future of Kruk-Ma-Kali’s empire.

As Trung Town and the Hobgoblin Empire took shape, Kruk-Ma-Kali began to get restless. He called his generals together and began plans for another campaign. This time they would attack the cities of Northern Cimmeria and the dwarves within the Terror Mountains. As preparations were made, tragedy befell the hobgoblin people. Kruk-Ma-Kali was stabbed by a goblin wielding a poisoned dagger. Whether this was a lone actor or part of a larger conspiracy was never discovered. Kruk-Ma-Kali died a few hours after the stabbing. On his deathbed he declared the heir of his empire. He willed the throne, “To the strongest.”

Next: The Days of Kruk-Ma-Kali Part 12

The Days of Kruk-Ma-Kali Part 5

Previous: The Days of Kruk-Ma-Kali Part 4

Kruk-Ma-Kali concocted a plot to discredit Lork-Bran-Dron with the soldiers. He planted the idea of a frontal assault in the king’s mind. Kruk-Ma-Kali was conservative with his men during the attack, saving many of their lives while others died in droves. The failed attack and useless death angered the soldiers. At that point, Kruk-Ma-Kali suggested a night attack not on either of the dual cities, but on the Cableway. The ferry was abandoned at night, making landing easy. From there Kruk-Ma-Kali’s force climbed along the cable into both cities. As dawn rose they opened the cities’ gates, letting in Lork-Bran-Dron’s army. North and South Tomak’nax were swiftly taken.

As Lork-Bran-Dron entered the city to proclaim his victory, Kruk-Ma-Kali interrupted him. The young hobgoblin raised Kharad-khor over his head and challenged Lork-Bran-Dron to single combat. The king was weak and led many soldiers to their deaths, while Kruk-Ma-Kali’s plan had succeeded with minimal loss of life. Kruk-Ma-Kali insisted that he would be the better king. Lork-Bran-Dron accepted the challenge and lost. Kruk-Ma-Kali’s black sword struck Lork-Bran-Dron’s head from his body and then he placed the fallen crown upon his head. Kruk-Ma-Kali was king now.

Kharad-khor fueled Kruk-Ma-Kali’s ambitions beyond anything he’d ever dreamed of as an outcast child. King of Lork-Bran-Dron’s little country was not enough. Kruk-Ma-Kali rallied his army as well as the people fighting for Tomak’nax. His psionic suggestions brought even his former enemies into his ranks. With Trung Town as his operations center, Kruk-Ma-Kali conquered the whole of the Hobgoblin Lands in a mere two years. Some people joined him willingly. Others required a slight push from Kruk-Ma-Kali’s brain. Others folded after a show of force. A few required the application of Kruk-Ma-Kali’s boots as he crushed them before the massive war machine he had created.

With Kruk-Ma-Kali’s army assembled there was only one choice. He aimed his people at the rest of Cimmeria with the goal of world conquest.

Next: The Days of Kruk-Ma-Kali Part 6

The Days of Kruk-Ma-Kali Part 4

Previous: The Days of Kruk-Ma-Kali Part 3

Kruk-Ma-Kali joined Lork-Bran-Dron’s army as a common soldier but he would not stay that way for long. As his psionic power was honed in the Shacklack School for Psions, so too did Kruk-Ma-Kali’s body grow alongside his mind. By the time he completed Lork-Bran-Dron’s boot camp in Trung Town, Kruk-Ma-Kali was a towering seven foot tall wall of muscle. Even without his telepathic abilities, Kruk-Ma-Kali attracted attention. His mind powers provided the extra nudge and Lork-Bran-Dron placed him in command of a small squad of soldiers.

Lork-Bran-Dron ordered a military campaign against the city-state of Tomak’nax. The army approached the dual city, fighting in a series of skirmishes along the way. In every skirmish the Tomak’nax soldiers slew Kruk-Ma-Kali’s superior officer and then he stepped in to lead the troops to victory. Each of these incidents earned Kruk-Ma-Kali a battlefield promotion from Lork-Bran-Dron. No one knew that Kruk-Ma-Kali had psionically called the opposing forces to target his commanders. No one knew that Kruk-Ma-Kali used telepathic nudges to place himself as the best replacement in the minds of the other soldiers of Trung Town. All they saw was a talented hobgoblin stepping in and leading them to victory.

At the siege of Tomak’nax, Kruk-Ma-Kali coated himself in psionic energy. This clouded the minds of others in close proximity to him, so that they never looked at him. With this magic of practical invisibility, Kruk-Ma-Kali reconnoitered the city. While surveying their defenses from inside something caught his eye. In the dirt beside one of the hastly erected wooden walls was a jet black longsword. Kruk-Ma-Kali picked up the sword and it drank in the sunlight, remaining matte black from every angle.

The sword spoke to Kruk-Ma-Kali and promised him power through conquest. It called itself Kharad-khor, Bloodthirster. Kruk-Ma-Kali listened and saw his path to glory. First, he would have to replace Lork-Bran-Dron as king of the assembled forces. He had arleady swiftly risen in esteem during the campaign and was now a trusted adviser to the king. One more step and the final prize could be his. Kruk-Ma-Kali completed his scouting mission and exited Tomak’nax with his black prize.

Next: The Days of Kruk-Ma-Kali Part 5

Trung Town

Trung Town was the capital of the Hobgoblin Lands under the leadership of Kruk-Ma-Kali. At the height of the Hobgoblin Emperor’s power the city was home to 400,000 goblinoids. After his assassination, Kruk-Ma-Kali’s city diminished in size. His vassals fought over the remains of his empire and the infant capital languished. Now Trung Town’s population is only 18,000 goblins, 1,000 hobgoblins, and 1,000 bugbears.

In the fighting after Kruk-Ma-Kali’s death, General Graz-Khrodun emerged on top with a secure hold on the capital after two decades of war. His victory was not without cost though. Many of the important political ties to the rest of the empire were frayed or broken by the war. Trung Town was an unimportant town before Kruk-Ma-Kali’s reign and without the strong mercantile connections created by the emperor, the city contracted at an alarming rate. Planned as a massive administrative center, it became a ghost town.

Graz-Khrodun focused his efforts on consolidation of power. He nominally succeeded and his descendant, Graz-Toshdrun still occupies the throne of Trung Town today. Graz-Toshdrun’s influence over the shrunken city is minimal at best. His personal guard leaves the palace monthly to collect a paltry amount of taxes from the capital and the surrounding communities. These taxes are barely enough for the guards, the palace staff, and Graz-Toshdrun to sustain themselves. They certainly don’t have the power to assist the people of Trung Town with their problems, such as the roving bugbear gangs that have moved in.

The death of Kruk-Ma-Kali and later diminishing of the Graz family left a power vacuum within Trung Town. Without the strength to protect his citizens, Graz-Toshdrun could do nothing but watch when the various bugbear tribes of the Hobgoblin Lands began settling in Trung Town. The city had shrunk over the years, but still maintained a healthy population, a population that the bugbears sought to cultivate and consume. Previously the citizens of Trung Town were good at hiding as a method to avoid Graz-Toshdrun’s taxes. Now that skill set became a necessity for survival as bugbear harvesters stalked the city’s streets and alleyways looking for a goblin to fill their cooking pots.

The streets of Trung Town are littered with unused architectural pieces. Kruk-Ma-Kali had planned a great capital with one million residents and was well on his way to building such a dream before his assassination. Acres of abandoned apartments, storefronts, and tunnels cover the city. A few notable structures have also fallen into disrepair. The city’s gladiatorial arena is now a slaughter pen for the city’s livestock. A forty-five foot tall statue of Kruk-Ma-Kali broke at the knees and the upper portion now lies upon a set of tenement houses. A large bathhouse has been dry for centuries. The only large structures that have been maintained are the Royal Palace where Graz-Toshdrun lives and the temples to Lion and Night. A few priests keep the sacred rituals for Lion and Night, the favored deities of Kruk-Ma-Kali. These priests ward the bugbears off using their magic and keep the temple grounds clean, but they are unable to do much else for the people of Trung Town.

Even in its dilapidated state, Trung Town remains an important pilgrimage site in the Hobgoblin Lands. Thousands come every year to pay their respects to the capital city and the site of Kruk-Ma-Kali’s death. The townsfolk make a living selling rubble from the buildings and trinkets they claim were owned by Kruk-Ma-Kali or his closest advisors. The pilgrims are advised to come with a bodyguard or a fast horse. Bugbear ambushes can happen at any time and they are fond of brewing “pilgrim soup.”

Despite the challenges afflicting Trung Town, the people of the capital have managed to develop a unique industry to maintain the city’s relevance in the present. Trung Town is Cimmeria’s largest exporter of ostrich meat, eggs, and feathers. Ostriches are the only large bird native to Cimmeria that has been domesticated and the Goblins of Trung Town are the only ones who know the secret. With a monopolistic hold on this product, the locals have clawed their way back into the minds of other goblinoids as more than just a deadly tourist trap. Merchant caravans make regular stops at the outskirts of Trung Town to load up on ostrich goods. The large fowl industry may be just what the Trung Towners need to get back on top.