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Hekesh was once the greatest lord to ever reign Lahmia. Under his benevolent guidance and boundless compassion, Lahmia may not have been the most prosperous of the city-states of ancient Nehekhara, but its citizens may well have been the most content. This was in the most ancient of times, before the foul sorceries of Nagash and queen Neferata led to that once-proud name, Lahmia, being cursed and its streets deserted. This was only just after the Great King, Settra, had perished. Some whisper, in fact, that this is the very cause of what happened, that the Liche Priests had simply not gleaned the secrets of Settra's Cults, and thus had embalmed and ensorcelled the King improperly. Others claim that, once the queen Neferata had fallen, this troubled her ancient ancestor so that, even in death, his mind was shattered. Other, of a darker mind, claim that that selfsame Queen's evil magicks took its toll upon those already resting in Lahmia's ancient necropoles. Some even believe that Neferata, under the sway of evil, poisoned the king's soul, whether as an accidental sideeffect of her foul rites or even deliberately, for whatever hidden reasons a vampire may have had.
(To Be Continued...)
All we know is that when wise king Hekesh rose from his tomb, he was no longer the great leader who had gone to rest in that self-same spot millenia before, but a changed man. He was now apparently quite insane. Believing himself and his reborn soldiers to be all that was left alive of old Nehekhara, and refusing to admit that either he or any of his loyal soldiers were actually dead, he set about the task of "rebuilding" that glorious nation. Exerting his iron will on his soldiers, he convinced himself they were still alive, had personalities and intelligence of their own, rather than just being puppets to his will. Thus, he split up his mighty legions and set some of them on the task of "rebuilding society" - fishing in the dry riverbeds, herding long-dead sheep, spinning their non-existent wool, marrying each other, holding grand festivals where they ate food that had long since rotted completely away and left only dust, which had scattered to the wind. They cut trees that no longer stood there, and sailed boats that were built of those same imaginary trees.
Even his still-remaining soldiers exhibited these traits, living and eating and bantering and holding friendships and grudges, all in the voiceless puppetry of the mad king. All of them he has given a name and personality, and he still regales like they were alive. He holds feasts, and laughs and drinks with his men. He has held wars to avenge the loss of farms long gone to bandits who were really just passing traders. He even occasionally is so offended by his soldiers that he executes them, their skulls toppling to the ground and their bodies crumbling. But soon he forgets his ire, and why his loyal soldier is lying dead on the ground, and so has his officers kick them up from their sleep with a soundless scolding, ready to fight again. His soldiers all look alike, however, and even the mad king's will can't keep them straight in his head. So the names and personalities change from hour to hour, and wander from man to man in an endless dance of madness. His subjects 'call' him Lord of the Plains. His peers call him Lord of the Sands. His friends call him the Puppeteer King, and his enemies the Mad King. He is Hekesh, and his madness is undying.
This guy sounds like he'd be a bunch of fun to have round!
"Oh, you're so crazy Hekesh!" everyone would cry as he renamed everyone for the 15th time that night...
An interesting character to say the least. Thanks for posting this!