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Characters / Second Apocalypse: Characters introduced in "The Aspect-Emperor" Trilogy

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This is a list of characters in R. Scott Bakker's The Second Apocalypse that appear in the second series, The Aspect-Emperor. For the main character page, see here.

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Main POV Characters

    Mimara 

Mimara

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/tgo_4_mimara_low.jpg

Esmenet's oldest daughter, who was sold into slavery as a child to avoid starvation.


  • Adult Fear: What Achamian tells her about the Judging Eye (all women with it give birth to stillborn children) takes on new meaning after she finds out she is pregnant. In The Unholy Consult, she gives birth, and one of her twins is indeed stillborn.
  • All-Loving Hero: As Mimara becomes more of a messianic figure she comes to be filled with boundless compassion and love for whomever she meets. This is mostly the result of the Judging Eye as she can intimately experience the lives of those she sees with it.
  • Back Up Twin: Prenatal variant. The Judging Eye only manifests in women who will be pregnant at some time in their lives and the resulting child(ren) will be stillborn. Mimara gives birth to twins, and only one of them is stillborn.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Towards her brothers Kelmomas and Samarmas. Sadly, it's entirely misplaced.
  • Break the Cutie: She's already been broken...and then Inrilatas had to drive the point further.
  • Broken Bird: An extreme case, since she was sold into slavery by her mother and was a child prostitute half her life.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: Mimara spends a lot of time loathing her mother for selling her and refuses to allow Esmenet to reconnect with her. She eventually forgives her after the two reunite in The Unholy Consult.
  • Character Tic: Tilting her head to the side, just like her mother.
  • The Chosen One: Having the Judging Eye makes Mimara this.
  • Cool Sword: Her Seleukaran blade, Squirrel.
  • The Ghost: Is mentioned but doesn't appear in the first series.
  • Holy Halo: When Mimara looks with the Judging Eye at her own reflection in a pool of water she is adorned with a silver halo. This is distinct from Kellhus, whose haloes (viewed without the Judging Eye) are always described as golden.
  • Horrible Judge of Character: In one particular case, Mimara insists to Achamian that Kelmomas is nothing like his siblings or father and is just a normal, sweet boy. Her illusions about Kelmomas are completely shattered when she learns about his true nature in The Unholy Consult.
  • Hooker with a Heart of Gold: More like sex-slave with a heart of gold, but the trope still fits.
  • Imperiled in Pregnancy: Oh, so very much. Thankfully she manages to get away (mostly) unscathed every time, and even by herself in some occasions.
  • In-Series Nickname: Esmenet calls her "Mim".
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Treated her mother like garbage during her time on the Andiamine Heights. Though having resentment for being sold in slavery by your own mother is a pretty good Freudian Excuse. Mimara later regrets how harsh she was with Esmenet, and explicitly forgives her when the two reunite.
  • May–December Romance: Achamian is some thirty years her senior.
  • Messianic Archetype: Her Christ-like passion occurs when Galian is about to rape her, and after gazing upon him with the Judging Eye, she forgives him for his sinfulness. This happens again during her dialectic with Koringhus—whom she had insisted that Achamian kill because all Dûnyain are unforgivably evil—where after seeing his soul with the Judging Eye she forgives him for his inherent sinfulness.
  • Not Quite Dead: So, remember how Esmenet kept talking about her dearly departed daughter? She was lying about it to cover up the extreme guilt she feels for selling Mimara into slavery.
  • Older Than They Look: From the way she's described (being constantly referred to as a "girl", for instance) and perceived by other characters, one would think she's in her early 20s or so. However, according to the date of birth given in the appendix at the end of The Thousandfold Thought, she's 37 during the second series.
  • Outliving One's Offspring: She gives birth in The Unholy Consult. One of her twins is stillborn.
  • Parental Incest: Achamian and Mimara have sex once, soon after their first meeting. Mimara is fairly convinced that he's her father, but he's pretty convinced that he's not, but still treats her as such.note  Both immediately regret the event.
  • Rags to Riches: Overnight Mimara went from a chattel sex-slave in the slums of Carythusal to a Princess-Imperial with Kellhus as her stepfather.
  • Rape as Backstory: Being a sex-slave in the slums of Carythusal was not a good experience.
  • Rape as Drama: It happened to Mimara as a young child, and continued up to her early twenties until Esmenet found her and took her out of the brothel. At the end of book five, she gets raped again by Galian.
  • Rebellious Princess: Is technically a renegade princess for running away from the Andiamine Heights. But Mimara never really acclimated well to the luxury of Momemn and so never really felt she was a Princess-Imperial in truth.
  • Sex Slave: Mimara's fate after being sold to a brothel in Carythusal.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: Mimara would basically be a younger version of Esmenet if not for some small physical differences (such as having paler skin and green eyes instead of brown).
  • Sugar-and-Ice Personality: Achamian says that Mimara's default mode of interacting with people is being abrasive one moment but then kind and conciliatory the next.
  • Waif Prophet: Is explicitly called a "waifish prophet" by Achamian at least once.

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    Varalt Sorweel 

Varalt Sorweel

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/tgo_2_cauldron_low.jpg

Prince (later King) of the distant northern city-state of Sakarpus, which lies in the way of the Great Ordeal; after his city is defeated, Sorweel is taken along as a hostage by Kellhus.


  • Authority in Name Only: Of the purely symbolic flavor. Sorweel is the lawful King of Sakarpus, but that title is meaningless in the face of Kellhus's conquest of Sakarpus.
  • Born in the Saddle: As befitting a son of Sakarpus. Sorweel is noted as the best horseman in the Company of Scions.
  • The Chosen One: Is anointed by Yatwer to kill the Aspect-Emperor. He becomes a fully-fledged White-Luck Warrior in The Unholy Consult (following the death of the former one in the previous book), but is killed before managing to assassinate Kellhus.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: Tortures a captured Sranc at one point.
  • Coming-of-Age Story: Sorweel's character arc is about growing beyond his sheltered upbringing and becoming a greater leader and King.
  • Conflicting Loyalty: Sorweel's heart is divided along many paths: the memory of his beloved parents and the people of Sakarpus; the demands of the Goddess, Yatwer; and the fact that Kellhus may actually be the messiah of humanity, and the former parties (his father and a Goddess) may be completely wrong. During the course of The Great Ordeal, he befriends the Nonmen and eventually loses his faith in Yatwer. Unfortunately for him, Yatwer fully takes over shortly after he leaves Ishterebinth, and he becomes the second White-Luck Warrior.
  • Death Seeker: As Serwa is lifting Sorweel out of the reach of the oncoming sranc he demands that she drop him. Sorweel often has fits of melancholy that he likens to that of suicides.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: With Zsoronga.
  • I Miss Mom: Sorweel often misses his deceased mother. This subject is also a Berserk Button for him—which is why Moënghus taunts him by commenting that King Harweel wasted his seed on Sorweel's mother.
  • In-Series Nickname: Mockingly called "Horse-King" by his fellow Scions. Was also called "Sorwa" by his father as an affectionate diminutive name.
  • Killed Off for Real: In The Unholy Consult, he is killed by Kelmomas (who can see past Yatwer's protection) as he is about to assassinate Kellhus with his hidden Chorae.
  • Puppet King: Kellhus and his Believer-Kings want Sorweel to become a Zaudunyani convert to rule Sakarpus. Sorweel is conflicted, to say the least. Kellhus and the others do come to think they succeeded, due to Yatwer's protection masking Sorweel's true emotions.
  • The Quisling: Sorweel fears he will be perceived as a traitor to his people for acquiescing to the Zaudunyani. It's not like he has much of a choice, though.
  • Sheltered Aristocrat: Starts out as a very sheltered Prince in The Judging Eye.
  • Shout-Out: There's a little homage to Cordelia Fine's A Mind of Its Own, when Sorweel reflects on the similarity of his own name and Serwa's. "Sorweel and Serwa, Serwa and Sorweel".
  • Stalker with a Crush: He develops an infatuated fixation towards Kellhus' daughter Serwa, which only intensifies after seeing her have incestuous sex with her adoptive brother Moënghus. Following the events of The Great Ordeal, Serwa does develop feelings of her own for Sorweel (well, as much as a half-Dûnyain can, it's at least a fascination) and the two start a (ultimately very brief and still conflicted) relationship.
  • Translator Microbes: An interesting example is employed in The Great Ordeal. In order to speak with the Nonmen in Ishterebinth, Sorweel is imprisoned in the Amiolas, a sorcerous helmet that is implanted with the soul of a Nonman. The merging of his soul with the Amiolas means that he can speak Ihrimsû and understand all the Nonmen characters.
  • "Well Done, Son!" Guy: Sorweel is a posthumous example, given that his biggest fear is not living up to his late father's expectations.
  • Young and in Charge: Subverted. He is King of Sakarpus after his father's death. But in truth he has no authority or power to contend with Kellhus or the Great Ordeal. He can only play along to try and spare his people anymore atrocities.


House Anasûrimbor

    Anasûrimbor Kayûtas 

Anasûrimbor Kayûtas

Eldest son of Esmenet and Kellhus. Crown prince and heir to Kellhus' empire.


  • The Ace: He's said to be "perfect," with a high degree of his father's inhuman strength but without any noticeable insanity.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Despite his Dûnyain heritage, Kayûtas gets visibly angry when Serwa suggests attacking Skuthula the Black in her current conditionnote . He even goes so far as to order Saccarees to subdue Serwa if she does anything impulsive.
  • Bishounen: Is described as being "perfect" and flawlessly beautiful.
  • Field Promotion: After Proyas's disgrace and death sentence, Kayûtas is promoted to Exalt-General of the Great Ordeal.
  • Generation Xerox: Is just a slightly more human version of Kellhus.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: With his adoptive brother Moënghus.
  • In-Series Nickname: Proyas and Serwa call him "Kayû". Serwa also calls him "Podi" (as she does to Moënghus) a few times.
  • The Lancer: To his father within the Great Ordeal, and later to Proyas after Kellhus abandons the Ordeal.
  • Meaningful Name: Kayûtas is probably a Sheyic equivalent of Cayûti. Kellhus can make allusion to the mythic associations of Nau-Cayûti, his ancient ancestor.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: The only time Kayûtas loses his confident demeanor is when he hears Kellhus calling for the Ordeal to retreat from Dagliash.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: Is portrayed as an excessively competent general and organizer.
  • Warrior Prince: Is never seen directly fighting, but Kayûtas comports himself like a martial warrior and is the heir to his Father's empire.
  • What Is This Thing You Call "Love"?: His mother Esmenet is heartbroken by her perfect son's total inability to love. However, Serwa's POV in The Unholy Consult implies that, like her, Kayûtas does possess some vestigial emotions.

    Anasûrimbor Moënghus II 

Anasûrimbor Moënghus II

Anasûrimbor Moënghus II is officially the son of Kellhus and his first wife, Serwë, eldest of the Prince-Imperials. In truth he is the son of Cnaiür urs Skiötha.


  • Affectionate Nickname: Both Kayûtas and Serwa call him Podi, which means "elder brother" in Sheyic.
  • Aloof Big Brother: Tries to act as a detached older brother around his younger siblings but doesn't quite manage it. They are Anasûrimbor with Dûnyain blood after all.
  • Awful Truth: Harapior made him realize that he had been more of a pet to Kellhus' children than an actual sibling all along, something he had always suspected deep down. Understandably, he did not take it well.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Despite his attempted aloofness, he reacts with howling rage when Harapior and his deputies escort Serwa out of the Thresholds, demanding that they take him instead. And in The Unholy Consult, he violently reacts to Cnaiür's attack on the Great Ordeal, as Kayûtas and Serwa will be potential victims.
  • Brother–Sister Incest: Not actually related to Serwa by blood, but their sexual relationship is seen as this by Sorweel.
  • Cassandra Truth: He sees clearly that Sorweel hates the Anasûrimbor, but Serwa ignores him because she can only see the false-love on Sorweel's face from Yatwer. Moënghus insists Sorweel's hate is obvious and clear but Serwa just keeps on ignoring him.
  • Child by Rape: He was conceived when Serwë was raped by Cnaiür, but it's unknown if he even knows this. It's never brought up in the second series, where he is an adult.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture:
    • His fate in Ishterebinth for most of The Great Ordeal.
    • In The Unholy Consult, it happens again after he's captured by the Scylvendi led by his biological father Cnaiür.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: He and Kayûtas.
  • Icy Blue Eyes: Just like his father, Cnaiür.
  • Informed Ability: He is described as an imposing badass for two books, but we don't actually see him fight. Moënghus spends all of The Great Ordeal imprisoned and being tortured. Then, in The Unholy Consult, he is captured and tortured again and humiliated by his biological father Cnaiür. Though, to be fair, the highly competent half-Dûnyain Serwa was also captured and tortured by the Nonmen of Ishterebinth, and Cnaiür was obviously more than a match for him.
  • Insistent Terminology: It is blasphemy and sacrilege to question the parentage of the Anasûrimbor. Sorweel mentions how obvious it is that Moënghus isn't Kellhus's biological son, but everyone insists that he is a "true-born son of the Anasûrimbor".
  • Nerves of Steel: Moënghus willing goes with the Kidruhil pickets to the very edges of the Horde. Not a job for the fainthearted. Despite being clearly overmatched, he still holds up fairly well after he is taken captive by the Scylvendi led by Cnaiür.
  • Not Blood Siblings: Isn't related by blood to any of Kellhus's actual children.
  • Overshadowed by Awesome: Moënghus may be pretty tough by ordinary standards, but being raised around Dûnyain, and later falling in with his true father's Scylvendi tribe, he's always regarded as useless.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: He looks very similar to Cnaiür, his biological father.
  • Walking Armory: Is described as being bristling with weapons when he rides out with the Kidruhil advance parties.
  • Warrior Prince: Comports himself like an imposing and badass prince, even though we never actually see him fighting. We might finally get a chance of seeing him fight in the next series, as he is now leading the Scylvendi as of the end of The Unholy Consult.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: After he fully realizes the Awful Truth mentioned above, he turns against Serwa and begins acting more unpredictably. So Serwa pushes him away as she starts a Transposition Cant, leaving him for dead. He survives, but is captured by the Scylvendi.

    Anasûrimbor Theliopa 

Anasûrimbor Theliopa

Esmenet's and Kellhus' first daughter, who serves as an adviser to the Imperial throne.


  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Despite all her peculiarities, Theliopa's abilities maker her indispensable to Esmenet's running of the New Empire.
  • Creepy Monotone: The cadence of her voice can come across as a disconcerting monotone.
  • Embarrassing Nickname: Srancy.
  • Eyes Always Averted: Theliopa avoids making eye contact whenever possible.
  • Hates Being Touched: Is described as always recoiling in agitation whenever her mother hugs her.
  • Impossibly Tacky Clothes: She is always seen wearing extremely eccentric clothes of her own design. According to her mother Esmenet, "the subtleties of style and fashion utterly eluded her".
  • In-Series Nickname: Thelli.
  • Killed Off for Real: In The Great Ordeal, Theliopa gets crushed beneath falling debris during an earthquake. Her brother, Kelmomas, crushes her skull afterward just to make sure she is dead.
  • Mr. Exposition: Theliopa explicates large amounts of information in regards to the political state of the various Cults, current economic issues and the mythos of the White-Luck Warrior to her mother and the reader at the same time.
  • No Social Skills: Esmenet remarks that Theliopa's awkwardness becomes rather comic at times.
  • Not So Stoic: After Kelmomas taunts her about her nickname and deduces what Inrilatas did to her, she runs away in tears.
  • Rape as Backstory: She went through something traumatic at the hands of Inrilatas. Being teased about it is the only thing that causes her real emotional distress.
  • Shrinking Violet: She is painfully shy and withdrawn, disliking all forms of affection.
  • Verbal Tic: She tends to repeat words as she talks. Because she always repeats the whole word rather than a syllable, it's apparently not a stutter, but some strange expression of her social awkwardness.

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    Anasûrimbor Serwa 

Anasûrimbor Serwa

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/anasurimbor_serwa.jpg

Esmenet's second daughter with Kellhus. She is the Grandmistress of the Swayali Sisterhood. Fights in the Great Ordeal using both sorcery and her physical abilities.


  • Affectionate Nickname: Moënghus refers to her as Serri at several points.
  • An Arm and a Leg: Near the end of her fight against Skuthula the Black in The Unholy Consult, she is hit by a Chorae, which causes part of her right arm to be salted off.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: Is the Grandmistress of the Swayali and is easily the most powerful witch in the world.
  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: Averted. After being hit with a pulse from the Sun Lance during the battle for Golgotterath, most of her body is left covered in ulcerating burns (including her face).
  • Big Damn Heroes: In the First Battle of the Horde, she rescues Sorweel from being raped and eaten by pursuing Sranc in the nick of time. Sorweel, however, just wishes to die.
  • Brother–Sister Incest: While Moënghus isn't really her brother (they are not blood relatives, nor were they raised together), her sexual relationship with him is still considered to be incest, at least by Sorweel.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: Is a victim of this in Ishterebinth. But being part Dûnyain means that Serwa is incredibly resilient to torture and turns the tables on her captors most of the time.
  • Dead Guy Junior: Is named after Serwë.
  • Evil Counterpart: To Mimara, in many ways.
  • Femme Fatale: Serwa certainly appears as one in Sorweel's eyes. This is deconstructed as Sorweel gets to know the real Serwa as the series goes on.
  • Full-Frontal Assault: Serwa tanks a full shot from the Sun Lance. She survives, but all her clothing is burned away. She spends the second half of the Battle of Golgotterath completely naked.
  • Hot Witch: She's literally a witch, and is flawlessly beautiful.
  • Informed Attractiveness: She's said to be stunningly attractive, acting as a "lodestone to men's eyes" when she attends war meetings.
  • Lady of War: Being Grandmistress of the Swayali means she is this.
  • Not Blood Siblings: See Brother–Sister Incest above.
  • Pretty Princess Powerhouse: Serwa is both a Princess-Imperial and the most powerful witch in all the Three Seas.
  • Teleport Spam: Averted. Serwa is not as powerful as Kellhus. Serwa can use one Transposition Cant and then she needs to rest for a few hours in order to recover her strength to do another. During the journey to Ishterebinth, she was said to be able to perform two Transposition Cants every day (very rarely three).
  • Uncertain Doom: It is unclear if she survives The Unholy Consult, but things do not look good for her when we last see her.
  • What Is This Thing You Call "Love"?: Initially presented as being mostly incapable of feeling love, much like her older brother Kayûtas. However, this is not exactly the case, as she is shown to have developed feelings (subdued, but still more than you'd expect from a half-Dûnyain) for Sorweel in The Unholy Consult. In the same books, she thinks of herself and Kayûtas as being very similar in personality, with both being capable of feeling vestigial emotions.
  • Young and in Charge: At the age of about 17, she's the Grandmistress of the Swayali and, upon her return to the Great Ordeal, the Exalt-Magus.

    Anasûrimbor Inrilatas 

Anasûrimbor Inrilatas

Esmenet's second son with Kellhus. He is the most obvious example of Dûnyain breeding going terribly wrong. He inherited his father's superhuman intellect, but not his mental fortitude. Consequently, he went completely insane as a child.


  • Breaking Them By Talking: This is his usual method of driving people to tears, usually in the form of a Hannibal Lecture.
  • A Date with Rosie Palms: He does this in front of his mother and her court, just to mess with her.
  • Go Mad from the Revelation: What happened to him as a child, when he couldn't control his superhuman intellect and finally went over the edge into complete madness.
  • For the Evulz: His entire motivation, from beginning to end.
  • Glass Cannon: He has a Dûnyain's speed and strength, but not their physical toughness. Maithanet quips that he has "his mother's bones" after smashing his face in.
  • Hannibal Lecture: He does this whenever someone comes to talk to him. When Kelmomas comes to negotiate a plan, Inrilatas can't help himself from trying to peel back the layers of Kelmomas' mind.
  • In-Series Nickname: His siblings refer to him as Inri a few times.
  • Killed Off for Real: In The White-Luck Warrior, after freeing himself from his chains, he tries to strangle his uncle Maithanet, but is killed by him instead.
  • Lack of Empathy: Played with. Esmenet and Theliopa discuss how Inrilatas has the greatest perceptions as it relates to reading other people with the Sight. Inrilatas might be an intensely empathetic individual, it's just that he uses his intense understanding of others to deconstruct them and inflict misery.
  • Living Lie Detector: His foremost Dûnyain ability.
  • Madwoman in the Attic: He's locked in his chambers and spends a lot of his time raving from behind the closed doors.
  • Meaningful Name: Inrilatas is almost certainly taken from Inri Sejenus, the Latter Prophet.
  • Mood-Swinger: His madness waxes and wanes without his control. He's only capable of holding a conversation in his mildest state. At the end of his conversation with Kelmomas, Inrilates warns that he can feel his madness on the horizon and becomes increasingly unhinged. When in the full grips of his madness, he rages, screams, throws excrement and even masturbates at others. Esmenet calls this side of him "the beast."
  • Oedipus Complex: His sexual harassment of Esmenet certainly gives this impression.
  • Rape Is a Special Kind of Evil: Not that he was presented in a good light before, but the reveal that he (most likely) raped his sister Theliopa when they were younger comes across as this.
  • The Sociopath: Played with. Inrilatas is an intensely emotional and empathic person, so he can't really be pathologized as sociopathic. But his actions and character fit the criteria of this trope.
  • The Unfettered: Says that all humans strive to be godly, and that to be godly one must act without constraint. So, in Inrilatas' mind, doing whatever he wants to anyone and everything is the purest form of piety.
  • Your Head Asplode: A single blow from Maithanet caves his face in.

    Anasûrimbor Kelmomas 

Anasûrimbor Kelmomas

Esmenet's third (and most beloved) son with Kellhus, twin brother of the mentally-handicapped Samarmas, and a gifted young boy who isn't quite what he seems to be...


  • Angsty Surviving Twin: Inverted. Kelmomas is happy that his brother is dead. This trope is later subverted, as (most of) Samarmas' soul was inside Kelmomas all along.
  • Cain and Abel: Kelmomas and Samarmas.
  • The Chessmaster: Kelmomas, while still a child, orchestrates a civil war between Esmenet and the Thousand Temples, by getting Inrilatas killed by Maithanet.
  • Child Prodigy: The Strength burns bright in him.
  • The Chosen One: Kelmomas is the Anasûrimbor prophesied to be the No-God. This is why the 100 cannot see him, and is how he foils the plans of two White-Luck Warriors.
  • Creepy Child: Very much so.
  • Enfant Terrible: Killing his own twin brother is just the beginning.
  • Establishing Character Moment: Anasûrimbor Kelmomas is introduced pretending to play like a normal child near his mother, but secretly torturing a beetle and feeling kinship with a statue of Ajokli, god of deceit. This reveals Kelmomas as a secret Enfant Terrible and establishes his link to Ajokli (which is later revealed to have been a Red Herring).
  • Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: Kelmomas's driving impulse is to secure his mother's love and to love her in return. It's implied that the only thing keeping Kel from acting more like Inrilatas is that he doesn't want to break his mother's heart with his ruthlessness, so acts the innocent child. He does not deal with his mother's discovery of his true nature in The Unholy Consult very well.
  • Eye Scream: Beware of Kelmomas and his skewer.
  • Face of an Angel, Mind of a Demon: The narration describes Kelmomas as having a beatific, divine face while he is torturing a captured Shrial Knight.
  • A God Am I: Thinks about reaching Godhead as the greatest achievement. As the series continues he thinks of himself more and more as a vessel of Ajokli. In fact, he was (destined to become) the No-God the whole time.
  • In-Series Nickname: Kel.
  • In the Blood: Like his siblings, a lot of Kelmomas' "peculiarities" are due to his blood.
  • It's All About Me: Kills his siblings and starts a civil war just so his mother will only have him to love.
  • Kids Are Cruel: Kelmomas relishes inflicting torment on others and dominating them. He's only eight years old.
  • Meaningful Name: Is named after his ancient ancestor, Anasûrimbor Celmomas, the last High King of Kûniüri.
  • Nightmare Fuel Station Attendant: Creates a balsa wood replica of Momemn that he can burn and destroy. He thinks of it as playtime.
  • No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: Of a limited value for Kel. In The Unholy Consult he finds the resolve to actually serve his father as it's his own way of demonstrating how he can be of use to Kellhus. Kelmomas's status as the No-God, means that he can see the truth of Sorweel when he fully becomes a White-Luck Warrior. Kelmomas actually saves Kellhus by killing Sorweel. But because everyone believes Sorweel was a devout Believer-King with not a whisper of sedition in his soul, Kel is imprisoned by his father and considered a complete and utter lost cause.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Or rather, obfuscating youth. It doesn't enter anyone's mind that a cute eight-year-old could possibly be an Evil Genius in disguise.
  • Powered by a Forsaken Child: At the end of The Unholy Consult, after he gets his father killed by distracting Ajokli (who was possessing him) at a crucial moment, he is placed into the Carapace in his place, leading to the activation of the No-God and beginning of the Second Apocalypse.
  • Red Herring: From his very first appearance, it is implied Kelmomas has some kind of link with the trickster god Ajokli. He doesn't. His father Kellhus was the one under Ajokli's influence all along, while Kelmomas had always been destined to become the No-God, and as such all of the Hundred were blind to him.
  • The Resenter: Kelmomas resents anyone who his mother has any affection for; Kelmomas wants Esmenet's love all for himself. The individuals Kel resents include pretty much all of his (half-)siblings and Biaxi Sankas.
  • Split Personality: Kelmomas and his twin Samarmas shared minds when they were born, and spent all their time staring into each other's eyes. When they finally were separated, Samarmas was reduced to a mentally handicapped Empty Shell because his higher faculties were left in Kelmomas' mind. This left Kelmomas with a Split Personality, and Samarmas' thoughts usually express themselves as a voice inside Kelmomas' head. However, the two personalities, while distinct, are close enough to each other that they do not even notice which one is in charge at any given time.
  • Sssssnaketalk: The voice in Kelmomas' head (actually most of Samarmas' soul) sometimes talks like this. This stops happening as the series goes on.
  • Tomato in the Mirror: Kel becomes the No-God. Because of the fatalistic nature of the universe, in a sense he has always been the No-God, hence he foils both White-Luck Warriors. Kelmomas has always been (is, will be) invisible to the Gods.

    Anasûrimbor Samarmas 

Anasûrimbor Samarmas

Samarmas is a Prince-Imperial, youngest son of Esmenet and Kellhus and twin to Kelmomas. He is unique among Kellhus's children in that he did not inherit any of his father's Dûnyain traits.


  • Cain and Abel: He and Kelmomas, Samarmas is the Abel. Or so it seems. It turns out that Samarmas' soul had been inside Kelmomas all along, and Kelmomas himself acknowledges that he only killed Samarmas' "flesh".
  • Empty Shell: It is revealed that when the two were separated as children, Samarmas' soul (or most of it) went into Kelmomas' body, leaving Samarmas as an apparently mentally handicapped child.
  • In-Series Nickname: His diminutive nickname is Sammi.
  • Railing Kill: Is a victim of this at the hands of his brother.
  • Token Good Teammate: Seems to be this for House Anasûrimbor. This is subverted when it turns out that the voice in Kelmomas' head is really Samarmas' higher cognitive functions, meaning he is just as manipulative and evil as his twin brother.
  • We Hardly Knew Ye: Is killed by his brother about one third into The Judging Eye.

    The Survivor 

Anasûrimbor Koringhus

The last adult Dûnyain in Ishuäl and Kellhus's only full-blooded Dûnyain son.


  • The Ace: He confounded the Elder Dûnyain with his gifts.
  • Ascended to a Higher Plane of Existence: Believes he is becoming one with God when he commits suicide. We can only guess at the truth.
  • Broken Ace: After the Siege of Ishuäl.
  • Catchphrase: His narration repeats the phrase "Cuts and cuts and cuts" when he's thinking and paring down all possible conclusions to discover the Shortest Path.
  • Chekhov's Gun: He gathered one hundred stones to kill birds and used ninety-nine. The Survivor gives the hundredth stone to his son. He uses it to save himself from the skin-spy.
  • Covered with Scars: His body is described as a horror of scar tissue from years spent battling Sranc.
  • Determinator: As implied by his nickname, "The Survivor," he fought Sranc until there were none left to fight.
  • Driven to Suicide: After being sounded by the Judging Eye and contemplating the Zero-God, his only response is to kill himself.
  • Foil: Is an obvious foil to his father, Kellhus.
  • Genius Bruiser: Is a Dûnyain after all. Koringhus has a fit and athletic build and is an organic supercomputer.
  • Love Makes You Crazy: Believes that love is irrational madness. The Survivor states how absurd it was for him to save his son when the Logos would have dictated otherwise. He did it anyway.
  • Madness Mantra: His constant repetition of "cuts and cuts and cuts" can sometimes be a maddened phrase that he repeats over and over.
  • Master Swordsman: As a Dûnyain, he had extremely rigorous training with a sword. Being the only adult Dûnyain to survive the Siege of Ishuäl speaks to his tremendous martial abilities.
  • Mr. Exposition: His narration gives plenty of information about the Dûnyain and the true nature of reality.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: His real name, Koringhus, is only mentioned once. He refers to himself as "The Survivor". His son uses the same name to refer to him.
  • Papa Wolf: Oddly enough, for a Dûnyain. It's implied that the overriding impulse to protect his son is what invigorated Koringhus to survive against odds which destroyed the other Dûnyain.
  • Small Role, Big Impact: Appears for three chapters in The Great Ordeal. He (apparently) figures out of the truth of the Absolute and the failure of the Dûnyain.
  • We Hardly Knew Ye: Commits suicide in the The Great Ordeal, the same book he's introduced in.

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    The Boy 

The Boy

A young Dûnyain boy, the son of the Survivor and thus Kellhus's grandson.


  • Chekhov's Gun: The hundredth stone his father gives him.
  • Fingore: Is missing three fingers on his right hand. It can be assumed they were cut off sometime during the Siege of Ishuäl.
  • Fragile Speedster: Can outrun hardened Scylvendi warriors and can almost outrun a skin-spy. He definitely doesn't have the physical strength to fight them head-on, though.
  • Never Given a Name: Koringhus apparently never gave him a name, as he is only ever referred to as "the Boy".
  • Sole Survivor: After the death of his father, he is the last of the Dûnyain who survived the Siege. This is later averted, as it is revealed in The Unholy Consult that five Dûnyain captives survived and took over the Consult from within.
  • Tagalong Kid: Joins Achamian and Mimara as a tagalong kid during that latter part of The Great Ordeal.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: He is not seen again after escaping the skin-spy pursuing him at the end of The Great Ordeal.


The Great Ordeal

    Apperens Saccarees 

Apperens Saccarees

Grandmaster of the Mandate and Exalt-Magus of the Great Ordeal (in Serwa's absence).


  • The Ace: Of the Mandate, this made him the natural choice when Kellhus needed to appoint the first Grandmaster of the Mandati.
  • The Archmage: As Exalt-Magus of the Great Ordeal he is the commander of all arcane forces in the Ordeal.
  • Badass Bookworm: He was the first of the Schoolman and the first non-Dûnyain to recite a Metagnostic Cant. That automatically makes him a noteworthy badass.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Subverted, horribly. The Schoolmen led by Saccarees return to Irsûlor to save the Army of the South. But Carindûsû's friendly fire triggers a complete battle between the Mandate and Vokalati Schools. Without the sorcerers to hold back the Horde, the sranc overrun the remnants of the mundane army.
  • Chekhov's Skill: It's repeated several times that Saccarees is the only normal human Gnostic sorcerer that has the capabilities to perform Metagnostic Cants. He was under the personal tutelage of Kellhus for several months. It's speculated that Saccarees proximity to Kayûtas and Serwa at the conclusion of The Unholy Consult means that he was able to teleport his Lord-and-Prophet's children to safety before the No-God and the Sranc Horde massacred the rest of the Great Ordeal.
  • Heroic BSoD: Looking out from Irsûlor, gazing upon the threshing, endless limits of the Horde, Saccarees completely shuts down mentally and contemplates how doomed humanity is.
  • Mr. Exposition: As a wise loremaster of the Mandate, Saccarees provides plenty of information about the behavior of sranc, the history of the First Apocalypse, and myths about Wreoleth.
  • Powers via Possession: After seeing Aurang on the Erengaw plains, it appears that Saccarees is possessed by Seswatha.
  • Rank Up: An odd version. For two thousand years the Mandate hasn't had a Grandmaster. Seswatha created the Quorum so that a collective would make sure the Mandate would remain focused on fighting the Consult, rather than a singular leader who may have perverted the mission of the Mandate to some mercenary end. With the Kellian Reconstitution, the democratic function of the Quorum was deemed obsolete and the Mandate was given a more authoritarian mode of governance with Saccarees being the first Mandati Grandmaster in history.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Is the sober-minded Blue Oni to the Red Oni of Carindûsû, the prideful, impulsive Grandmaster of the Vokalati.
  • Remember the New Guy?: Not an egregious example, but Saccarees isn't mentioned at all in The Judging Eye and suddenly becomes one of the most important leaders of the Ordeal in the next book.
  • Supporting Leader: For the majority of the Great Ordeal's march, he leads its most important contingent. In fact, he might be the third-most powerful sorcerer in Eärwa after Serwa and Kellhus himself. However, he gets very little attention in the narrative thrown his way, with only one fleeting section from his POV.
  • Throwing Down the Gauntlet: Seswatha demands that Aurang give him a "disputation" as in days of old.

    Thanteus Eskeles 

Thanteus Eskeles

A Mandate schoolman assigned to tutor Sorweel in Sheyic.


  • Back for the Dead: After disappearing halfway through The White-Luck Warrior and all of The Great Ordeal, Eskeles' return in The Unholy Consult amounts to him getting a few lines before being snuffed out by Skuthula at the Intrinsic Gate.
  • Eternally Pearly-White Teeth: Sorweel notes how flawlessly white Eskeles' smile is, in contrast to the unkempt shag that is his beard.
  • Foil: Eskeles is very similar to Achamian. He is a stout, unassuming and educated sorcerer who serves as a tutor to a less-than-eager student. However, unlike Achamian, he has bought completely into Kellhus's promise of salvation.
  • Get a Hold of Yourself, Man!: Is on the receiving end of a reaffirming slap from Sorweel—they really need Eskeles to pull himself together to send Bar of Heaven to signal the Army of the Middle-North.
  • Shout-Out: Eskeles' name is pronounced the same as Aeschylus, which could hardly be a coincidence considering the other classical references in the series.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: After the First Battle of the Horde and the destruction of the Scions, Sorweel is promoted to serve on Kayûtas's personal command staff. Eskeles doesn't reappear in the narrative after Sorweel's reassignment, he also doesn't appear in The Great Ordeal. He does reappear for several brief moments in The Unholy Consult.

    Zsoronga ut Nganka'kull 

Zsoronga ut Nganka'kull

The Successor-Prince of High Holy Zeüm and hostage of the Aspect-Emperor. A member of the Company of Scions in the Great Ordeal.


  • Establishing Character Moment: During his first meeting with Sorweel, and without understanding the King's language, Zsoronga establishes his personality by courteously inviting Sorweel to recline comfortably in his seat by stretching out in his own seat and sighing, "Ahhhhh!" Sorweel finds this hilarious, and they both start doing it.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: With Sorweel.
  • Guile Hero: Is the heir apparent of the only remaining independent nation in Eärwa which poses a credible threat to the New Empire. Is also a hostage-guest in the Great Ordeal, a massive coalition of Zaudunyani zealots. Zsoronga has to be pretty sly when trying to suss out whom he can trust.
  • Insult of Endearment: Will occasionally call Sorweel a "sausage," which is a Zeumi racial slur of lighter-skinned people, but he says it in good humor.
  • Meaningful Look: Gives a meaningful glance to Sorweel after Kellhus declares the Sakarpi a Believer-King.
  • Nice Guy: In a series full of profoundly unpleasant and evil characters, Zsoronga is a genuinely nice person with no negative traits.
  • Nice to the Waiter: Zsoronga is very fond of his slave, Obotegwa.
  • Odd Friendship: With Sorweel. A King of Sakarpus and the Successor-Prince of Zeüm.
  • The Storyteller: Even with the language barrier, Sorweel remarks that Zsoronga has a certain panache and style in relating the history of his people that is enthralling.
  • The Wise Prince: Subverted. Zsoronga has all the qualities that would make him a wise prince, but he's a hostage of the Great Ordeal marching in the middle of the Ancient North and thus isn't really ruling anything or able to demonstrates his qualities in court.

    Halas Siroyon 

Halas Siroyon

Chieftain of the Famiri tribes in the Great Ordeal.


  • Barbarian Tribe: The Famiri seem to be a rather brutal tribe in the northern highlands of Conriya.
  • Born in the Saddle: For a Famiri tribesman it seems standard.
  • Cool Horse: His mount, Phiolos, is rumored to be the fastest horse in all the Three Seas.
  • Glory Hound: Seems to have the mentality of a blustering glory hound, always trying to outdo and humiliate Sibawûl, even if it risks the lives of his own men.
  • Proud Warrior Race Guy: His pride is his most defining character trait and he is a mighty war-leader.
  • The Rival: To Sibawûl.
  • Throwing Down the Gauntlet: Rides alone around the circuit of Golgotterath taunting the Consult to show themselves. They make no response.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: The Famiri ride into battle bare-chested.

    Sibawûl te Nurwûl 

Sibawûl te Nurwûl

Chieftain of the Cepalorae tribes in the Great Ordeal.


  • Barbarian Tribe: Is the Chieftain of a barbarian tribe.
  • The Corruption: Eating sranc makes men act more sranc-like. Sibawûl and his Cepalorae are the best case study for its horrible side effects.
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: In The White-Luck Warrior, Sibawûl is shown to be a bungler and not-too competent general. This changes in The Great Ordeal.
  • Eaten Alive: By Proyas no less. Sibawûl and the rest of the Scalded are eaten by the famished Ordeal.
  • General Failure: In The White-Luck Warrior, his defining character trait is being a poor planner and general.
  • The Quiet One: Is noted for his silence in council.
  • Red Baron: The Shadow of Wreoleth. The Kidruhil also start to call him Sibawûl Vaka.
  • The Rival: To Siroyon.
  • Running Gag: He keeps screwing up in The White-Luck Warrior and keeps on getting flogged.
  • Your Days Are Numbered: He is still alive at the end of The Great Ordeal. He is a victim of radiation poisoning from the tekne-nuke.

    Sasal Umrapathur 

Sasal Umrapathur

King of Nilnamesh. Marshal of the Ketyai of the South in the Great Ordeal.


  • Black Dude Dies First: Umrapathur has the darkest complexion of the four Marshals, and the Ketyai of the South are ethnically the darkest contingent of the Great Ordeal. They are almost uniformly annihilated at Irsûlor.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: Raped to death by sranc.
  • A Death in the Limelight: Has zero characterization before the final Great Ordeal chapter in The White-Luck Warrior. It documents Umrapathur's desperate straits to survive the Horde. The chapter climaxes with the Battle of Irsûlor and the destruction of the Army of the South.
  • Face Death with Dignity: Once he realizes he is utterly doomed, Umrapathur drops to his knees and prays for his Holy Prophet to triumph against the Consult, and for his family to be saved from any coming tribulation.
  • Four-Star Badass: Marshal of the Ketyai of the South.
  • The High King: Before the Unification, Nilnamesh was a loose confederacy of various Principalities. Umrapathur is King of a united Zaudunyani Nilnamesh.
  • In-Series Nickname: Kellhus calls him "Umra", a diminutive form of his full name.


The New Empire

    Psatma Nannaferi 

Psatma Nannaferi

The hidden matriarch of the cult for the mother-goddess Yatwer.


  • Black and White Morality: All who cross Yatwer must perish.
  • The Fundamentalist: Utterly consumed by her worship of Yatwer.
  • Femme Fatale: Becomes a Dark Fantasy version of a femme fatale after she transfers her age to the White-Luck Warrior.
  • Good Is Not Nice: She hasn't a drop of pity or mercy in her, but she's trying to protect the world from (what her goddess tells her is) an evil demon.
  • Heart Is an Awesome Power: Being the matriarch of a fertility goddess doesn't sound very scary, but Yatwer is not fucking around.
  • High Priest: Mother-Supreme of the Cult of Yatwer.
  • Inertia Is a Cruel Mistress: Is transposed hundreds of feet into the air by Kellhus. She then comes flying back down to earth.
  • Knight Templar: Her mission is to implement the will of Yatwer, not matter whom she has to crush.
  • Ludicrous Gibs: Pieces of her are described as sloughing off Malowebi's Wards.
  • The Man Behind the Man: Or women in this case. Hanamem Sharacinth is the public head of the Cult of Yatwer as the Matriarch. Psatma is the real leader of the Cult holding the rank of Mother-Supreme—a position that was supposedly outlawed centuries ago.
  • Older Than They Look: She's quite old, but regains her youth during a ritual. People who see her note that she looks like a beautiful girl and acts like a crone.

    The White-Luck Warrior 

The White-Luck Warrior

In Inrithism, the White-Luck Warrior is the man who walks the perfect line of action and happenstance that can see any outcome come to pass. In the second series, a White-Luck Warrior has been anointed to kill the Aspect-Emperor and his progeny.


  • Character Title: Of the fifth novel in the series, The White-Luck Warrior.
  • Empowered Badass Normal: The White-Luck Warrior has no overt magical or supernatural abilities. It's merely that whatever he needs to happen will happen. He's basically Born Lucky taken Up to Eleven.
  • Kill and Replace: Kills the original Ajokli assassin so he can pretend to be the Narindar.
  • Meaningful Name: The Shigeki who is the vessel of the White-Luck is named Issiral. His name means "fate" in Shigeki.
  • Non-Linear Character: The White-Luck Warrior perceives both past, present, and future simultaneously.
  • Took a Level in Badass: During his initiation, the youthful White-Luck Warrior not only gains the Unerring Grace, but also ages into a man, with a man's strength.

    Malowebi 

Malowebi

Second Negotiant to the Satakhan of High Holy Zeüm, sent to assess whether Zeüm should support Fanayal ab Kascamandri's insurrection.


  • And I Must Scream: He is decapitated, and his disembodied head is hung from Kellhu's girdle, where he's still conscious and able to witness the final moments of the Great Ordeal.
  • Diplomatic Impunity: Tries to invoke diplomatic neutrality when confronted by Kellhus. Kellhus tells him that he is way out of his jurisdiction.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: His inner monologue is constantly railing against the First Negotiant.
  • Neutral No Longer: Malowebi's entire purpose is to judge if Zeüm should discard their current neutrality and support Fanayal's insurrection.
  • Off with His Head!: Is decapitated by Kellhus.
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • When Kellhus teleports into Fanayal's camp, Malowebi responds with appropriate dread.
    • This is his position during the entirety of The Unholy Consult, perpetually flabbergasted by what he sees at the culmination of the Great Ordeal.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: When coming face-to-face with the Second Apocalypse, he forgives Likaro.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: In The White-Luck Warrior Malowebi is a fairly mild-mannered and introspective character. Come The Great Ordeal the stress of dealing with Fanayal as the siege of Momemn drags on tests his patience and his amiable demeanor starts to unravel.

    Meppa 

Meppa

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/tgo_3_meppa_low.jpg

A powerful Cishaurim primary in service to Fanayal.


  • Back from the Dead: He is mortally wounded by an arrow, but Psatma Nannaferi resurrects him so that the Fanim can continue to harass Kellhus's empire.
  • Badass Boast: As a Cishaurim "Water-Bearer," he screams to Kellhus that he will "come like a flood" and "deliver such Water as to burn thee to ash!"
  • The Dragon: Is Fanayal's greatest weapon in his fight against the New Empire.
  • In-Series Nickname: "Stonebreaker."
  • Last of His Kind: He is described as the last of the Indara-Kishauri after the destruction of his school.
  • Mysterious Past: Very little is known about who he was before he changed his name, how he survived the destruction of his school, or why he's so powerful.
  • Not Quite Dead: Most likely. At first it looks like Kellhus disintegrates him. But the last we see of him is "sprawled semi-conscious" on the floor. Kellhus probably wants him alive.
  • Only Known By His Nickname: "Meppa" is an assumed name, which he says is the Cant that killed his family.
  • Unstoppable Rage: Goes into a howling rage during his confrontation with Kellhus. Not that it helps him much.


Scalpoi

    Cleric 

Cleric

A Nonman sorcerer in strange company.


  • Big Good: Was the chief leader and force of good whilst leading the Nonmen to their victory over the Inchoroi. When Gin'yursis spurned humanity as "vermin", Nil'giccas recognized the potential of Mankind and so began the Nonmen Tutelage. Nil'giccas and his Siqû began imparting all the learning, craft, philosophy and sorcery of the Cûnuroi to the scholars and sorcerers of Ancient Ûmerau. Nil'giccas also joined Celmomas II on his Great Ordeal to end the threat of Golgotterath.
  • Bread, Eggs, Milk, Squick: In the middle of his and Mimara's romantic talk, he tells her that he wants to strangle her and torture her to death. (And this is actually him being heartfelt and romantic, in his own insane way.)
  • Broken Bird: In his case, broken several hundred times over countless myriads of years. Most of his memories are trauma heaped upon trauma.
  • Cloud Cuckoo Lander: Can seem bizarrely detached sometimes with his rambling oscillating from profound to baffling.
  • Defector from Decadence: He abandoned his own Mansion, Ishterebinth, when they succumbed to mass dementia and joined the Consult. Sarl says that they found the Nonman exile "like a coin in the mud."
  • Dissonant Serenity: Cleric has endured plenty of horror and tragedy with a calm, detached serenity.
  • Failure Knight: Cleric has lived for millennia, and seen all his victories become undone. In ancient times, he finished the war of extermination against the Inchoroi, and concealed the Min-Uroikas forever with sorcery. It would have ended there, if Aurang and Aurax had not survived. Actually, the whole Nonman species fits this trope.
  • The Fog of Ages: Nonmen have mortal minds inside immortal bodies that can live for millennia after millennia. Quite a few go insane from the amnesia. They have so many memories piled up inside them, that they can only remember the most traumatic events (by PTSD). The insane Nonmen who are addicted to violence for memory's sake, such as Cleric, are known as Erratics.
  • The Good King: As Nil'giccas.
  • Heroic BSoD: He has several.
  • I Have Many Names: Cleric is his slog name. Incariol is his actual name, and Nil'giccas is his original name.
  • Immortality Hurts: Ties in with the Failure Knight above, but losing most of the people you've cared about until your life is an empty shell is pretty painful.
  • In the Hood: During much of The Judging Eye Cleric keeps his face concealed in his black hood. Most people would be freaked out by seeing a Nonmen, so it's good to keep a low profile.
  • King Incognito: His real identity is Nil'giccas, the Nonman King of Ishterebinth.
  • Last of His Kind: After the death of Gin'yursis, Nil'giccas was the last Nonman King in Eärwa.
  • Loving a Shadow: His wife, who died in the Womb-Plague. To make him happier, Mimara shaves her head and eyebrows to look more like a Nonwoman.
  • Magic Knight: In a series full of aged, infirmed sorcerers, Cleric is a peerless Master Swordsman as well as Quya mage.
  • That Man Is Dead: Cleric says as much to Achamian, that he can never return to being Nil'giccas. Cleric says that the ancient King is long dead and that he can no more return to him than return the virgin womb of Achamian's mother.
  • Meaningful Name: Cleric's real name, Incariol, means "Lord Wanderer" in Ihrimsû.
  • One-Man Army: Obliterates thousands of sranc in Cil-Aujas and can go toe to toe with Bashrag.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Again, as Nil'giccas. He began the Nonman Tutelage for the sake of humanity and joined Celmomas's coalition to destroy Golgotterath.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: Finished the war with the Inchoroi and fought beside humanity in the First Apocalpyse.
  • Suicide by Cop: It's implied that by not casting any Wards, Cleric hoped that Achamian would be able to kill him rather than the converse.
  • Who Wants to Live Forever?: His long life has taken a terrible toll on his mind.

    The Skin Eaters 

The Skin Eaters

The preeminent scalper company in the New Empire.


  • Badass Normal: Pokwas, Xonghis and especially the Captain.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: The happy-go-lucky Soma, a bumbling airhead who is rather out-of-place in the scalping band, yet is still considered one of the veterans. Even during the ordeal in Cil-Aujas, he is unaffected by the horrors around him and turns out to be a Consult skin-spy.
  • Blood Knight: The Captain is the epitome of this trope.
  • Captain Smooth and Sergeant Rough: Though they are both Sergeants of the company that are subordinate to the Captain, Kiampas and Sarl have the dynamic of being a calm staff officer and rough sergeant respectively.
  • Character Tic: Soma is described as seeming to blink continuously. You get used to it and after a while it just seems normal for him.
  • The Consigliere: The Captain is a nurturing adviser for Cleric, who is almost completely dependent on him. Cleric, like all remaining Nonmen, is an insane amnesiac who needs to have a human consigliere (called an elju, meaning "book") to refresh his memory and keep him grounded in reality. Sarl also fills the second-in-command role to Kosoter.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Galian is a constant source of snark, especially when he's teasing Soma.
  • Dwindling Party: The Skin Eaters get picked off gradually over the course of two books.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: The Skin Eaters are largely a bunch of amoral bastards, but even they have only the deepest hatred for the Stone Hags, an outlaw band of scalpers who prey on other humans instead of Sranc.
  • Equal-Opportunity Evil: The Skin Eaters are a pretty ethnically and culturally diverse company.
  • Face–Heel Turn: Mimara notes that Galian seemed like one of the most upstanding Skin Eaters when they first ventured out, but eventually becomes the most sadistic and treacherous.
  • For the Evulz: During the slog, Galian becomes quite sadistic and starts manipulating Stone Hags into doing something that will make Kosoter kill them.
  • Go Mad from the Revelation: Sarl doesn't do too well in Cil-Aujas. His body is fine, but his sanity never recovers from the Mind Rape.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: The Skin Eaters have fought Sranc for so long that they've become hardened to an extreme degree. "The rules of the slog" definitely prove this. After hunting monsters as a career, they've become pretty monstrous themselves.
  • In-Series Nickname: Most of the Bitten have nicknames for one another: Somandutta is shortened to Soma, Oxwora to Ox, Sutadra to Soot, and Pokwas to Pox.
  • Madness Mantra: Sarl and his insane ranting. "The slog of the slogs!"
  • Master Swordsman: Pokwas, a Zeümi sword-dancer and Scary Black Man extraordinaire. Soma also morphs into a killing machine during battle and this is how Mimara clocks him for a skin-spy.
  • Meaningful Name: Sutadra means "jackal" in Sheyic. It's probably not Soot's real name.
  • Proud Warrior Race Guy: Pokwas, Oxwora, and Xonghis.
  • Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: Like any scalper company, the Skin Eaters are a motley group of vagabonds.
  • Red Shirt: All of the scalpers who are not in the leadership or the "Bitten" are given little characterization and get anonymously whittled down over the course of two books. The company leadership practically lampshades it at the outset by asserting that the Skin Eaters' dread reputation is built on Kosoter and Cleric, while the rank and file are just a bunch of common scalpers.
  • Sanity Slippage: Half the Skin Eaters lose their minds after the ordeal in the black halls of Cil-Aujas. Sarl is the most obvious case.
  • Scary Black Man: The badass and brutal Zeümi, Pokwas.
  • Stereotype Flip: It's remarked upon that Kosoter is as savage as a desert tribesman but actually is from Ainon, an hyper-civilized nation known for softness and hedonism. "It seemed absurd to imagine him reclining at the night-long bacchanals of eating and vomiting so popular with the Ainoni nobility, that he'd plotted with men too fat to walk, that he'd worn porcelain masks for negotiations and powdered his face white before riding to war."
  • Token Good Teammate: The Nansur regular army veteran, Kiampas, is the least insane and most moral of all the Skin Eater company. Predictably, he is one of the first to be killed in Cil-Aujas.
  • Token Minority: Xonghis is the only character in the entire series from Jekhia—the only nation in the Three Seas that is comprised of people of Xiuhianni racial descent.
  • Villainous Rescue: Tsuör, the skin-spy who impersonates Somandutta and Koll, protects Mimara and even sacrifices himself to save her life. It's not clear whether he did this having somehow gained morality or the Consult is simply playing a long game.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness:
    • The Captain summarily executes anyone who cries, has a mental breakdown, is badly wounded, or otherwise slows down the scalpers. With a casual ruthlessness, he kills many people for being "burdens" on the journey to Sauglish. At first, Achamian is horrified by this and thinks Kosoter is an insane loon, but then sees the cold-blooded logic in this. By the end, he has accepted the Captain's brutal methods as the only way to get the journey to its destination. And he's right.
    • When the few surviving scalpers finally do reach the dead city, Galian pulls this one and kills the Captain.


Ishterebinth

    Nil'giccas 

Nil'giccas

The Nonman King of Ishoriöl during the wars against the Inchoroi and the First Apocalypse.

See the folder for Cleric

    Nin'sariccas 

Nin'sariccas

The emissary of Nil'giccas that treats with Kellhus.


  • Mouth of Sauron: Supposedly a servant of Nil'giccas. He's actually a crony of Nin'ciljiras, which casts him in a much more villainous light.
  • Nerves of Steel: Subverted. Proyas thinks that Nin'sariccas is incredibly unflappable for keeping so calm and collected in the presence of Kellhus. But Proyas soon realizes that the Nonman is actually terrified in his own Nonman-way.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Appears for a chapter in The White-Luck Warrior to treat with Kellhus and invoke the Niom but then doesn't appear within Ishterebinth in The Great Ordeal. Given that Serwa used Cants of Transposition to travel quickly, he might still be making the journey back.

    Nin'ciljiras 

Nin'ciljiras

The current King of Ishterebinth and a descendant of Nin'janjin.


  • Arc Villain: Is the main antagonist for the Ishterebinth arc in The Great Ordeal.
  • Bling of War: Wears a golden Soggomantic hauberk. It wasn't looted from the Ark like the Soggomantic Gate—it's a gift from the Consult.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: Mentioned in a throwaway line in The Warrior Prophet. Becomes a key figure in the Ishterebinth arc in The Great Ordeal.
  • Identical Grandson: We can't speak to personality traits or exact physical features. But he, like his grandfather, became a servant of the Inchoroi and the Consult.
  • Last of His Kind: Claims to be the last of the line of Tsonos.
  • Man on Fire: Being covered in oil is a pretty big fire hazard.
  • Oh, Crap!: Loses his cool very quickly once Oirûnas arrives.
  • Puppet King: To the Consult in Ishterebinth.
  • Shout-Out: His death is an homage to the death of Denethor from The Lord of the Rings. A false ruler being immolated.
  • The Usurper: Of Nil'giccas after he abandoned Ishterebinth.

    Harapior 

Harapior

Nin'ciljiras's Lord-Torturer and most loyal supporter.


    Oinaral Lastborn 

Oinaral Lastborn

Son of Oirûnas and the youngest Nonman alive. The last of the Siqû.


  • The Baby of the Bunch: Of an entire race. Even though Oinaral is at least over four thousand years old, he is coddled as a baby by the remaining Cûnuroi of Ishterebinth.
  • Broken Pedestal: For Nil'giccas after he begins ladling Emwama fat on himself.
  • Deuteragonist: Is the secondary protagonist to Sorweel for the Ishterebinth arc.
  • Heroes Prefer Swords: His glowing magic sword is called Breathtaker.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Goes to waken his father from the Dolour to cleanse Ishterebinth of the Vile, knowing full well that his father will almost certainly try to kill him. In fact, he does.
  • Let's Get Dangerous!: His job is described as a "scribe" and is basically a court functionary in Ishterebinth. Dons a full panoply of Nimil armor and a sorcerous sword as he prepares to enter the Holy Deep to find his father.
  • Mr. Exposition: As the sanest Nonmen in Ishterebinth and as Sorweel's Siqû, Oinaral serves as a vessel for exposition about Nonmen culture, history and other minutiae.
  • My Greatest Failure: When Nil'giccas took to ladling Emwama fat over himself to reduce the Dolour, Oinaral forsook his King and refused to serve as his elju. Nil'giccas became lost to the Dolour and left Ishterebinth as an Erratic. This failure haunts Oinaral and he blames himself for Nin'ciljiras's presence.
  • Only Sane Man: The most Intact of all the remaining Nonmen in Ishterebinth.
  • Small Role, Big Impact: His sacrifice ensures that Ishterebinth doesn't side with the Consult.

    Cilcûliccas 

Cilcûliccas

The Lord of Swans, Master of the Injori Quya.


  • The Archmage: Quya don't really have formal schools or sorcerous institutions. But Cilcûliccas is the Master of the Injori Quya, so he could be considered the archmage of Ishterebinth.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Arrives at Golgotterath with a handful of Quya mages to aid the beleaguered Great Ordeal.
  • The Cavalry: Appears with thirty-two Quya mages to save the Tydonni manning Domathuz from the incoming Horde.
  • The Dragonslayer: Famed for killing Murathaur the Silver, the Dragon of Knives during the First Invsetiture when Nil'giccas and Ishterebinth had joined Celmomas on his Great Ordeal to destroy Golgotterath.
  • The Mentor: Is implied to be Oinaral's mentor and parental guide.
  • Minor Major Character: Is probably the second most important Nonman in Ishterebinth after the King. He appears in one chapter in The Great Ordeal.
  • Only Sane Man: Implied to be the most Intact and sanest of the Quya that come to fight alongside the Great Ordeal.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Is implied to be the leader of the conspiracy that opposes Nin'ciljiras and also wants to honor the Niom and so help the Great Ordeal destroy the Consult once and for all.

    The Boatman 

The Boatman

The Boatman was the only elderly Nonmen to survive the Inchoroi's curse of immortality. As such, he is the only old-looking Nonman alive.


  • Age Without Youth: He's spent millenia as an old man.
  • The Ferryman: His job title. He also embodies the mythical archetype of the underworld ferryman, guiding Oinaral and Sorweel down into the Holy Deep.
  • I Have Many Names: The Boatman, Master of the Great Ingressus, The Most Ancient Warrior, and Father of Orphans.
  • Insanity Immunity: The Boatman doesn't act as if he is possessed by the Dolour. Oinaral speculates that Morimhira was so ancient that he was already Erratic ere the Inchoroi arrived and thus had a certain immunity to The Fog of Ages that other Nonmen go through.
  • The Older Immortal: By far the oldest of all remaining Nonmen, he was ancient even before the arrival of the Inchoroi.
  • Red Baron: Almost exclusively referred to as "the Boatman." His real name is Morimhira.
  • Silence Is Golden: Enforced. Oinaral tells Sorweel that once they reach the Holy Deep, the Boatman will kill either of them if they say anything on the Mere.
  • Warrior Poet: His only dialogue is singing lays and tragic ballads of the Cûnuroi.

    Oirûnas 

Oirûnas

One of the Tall, he is one of the greatest Nonmen warriors, second only to Ciogli.


  • Badass Baritone: Only natural, considering he's a giant Nonman, but Oirûnas has a resonant, baritone voice.
  • Big Damn Heroes: During the final Ishterebinth chapter of The Great Ordeal.
  • The Fog of Ages: The Tall suffer a variant of the Dolour as distinct from other Nonmen. It's said that they retain their sanity in greater proportion but are also ruled more completely by their violent humors, Oirûnas is no exception.
  • Heroes Prefer Swords: Wields a massive sword called Imirsiol—the Hammer of Siöl.
  • Killed Offscreen: We don't see much of the battle between the Intact and Erratics at Ishterebinth. The glossary in The Unholy Consult confirms his death.
  • Living Legend: Is one of the legendary Heroes of the first wars against the Inchoroi.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: After he realizes that he killed his son.
  • Let's Get Dangerous!: After being awoken from the Dolour by Sorweel, he dons his ancient armor and makes ready to obliterate the servants of the Consult.
  • Neck Lift: In the ancient wars against the Inchoroi he could reportedly lift Bashrag up by the throat.
  • Our Giants Are Bigger: He is large enough to make his son look like a "statuette."
  • Red Baron: The Lord of the Watch.
  • Sole Survivor: After the death of his brother, Oirûnas is the only remaining member of the First Watch.


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