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Literature / Warhammer Time Of Legends

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Warhammer: Time of Legends is a series of novels set in the Warhammer Fantasy universe. Each of the novels are set during the past events of the Warhammer world's past.

From the elven civil war known as "The Sundering", to the rise of the creator of necromancy Nagash, to the War of Vengeance/of the Beard that forever damaged the friendship between elf and dwarf, to the legend of Sigmar and the birth of the empire of man and to the war between the Empire and the Skaven.

  • The Sundering by Gav Thorpe
    • Malekith
    • Shadow King
    • Caledor
  • The War of Vengeance/of the Beard by Nick Kyme, Chris Wraight & C.L. Werner
    • The Great Betrayal
    • Master of Dragons
    • Curse of the Phoenix Crown
  • The Rise of Nagash by Mike Lee
    • Nagash the Sorcerer
    • Nagash the Unbroken
    • Nagash Immortal
  • The Legend of Sigmar by Graham Mc Neill
    • Heldenhammer
    • Empire
    • God King
  • The Black Plague by C.L. Werner
    • Dead Winter
    • Blighted Empire
    • Wolf of Sigmar


Provides Examples Of:

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  • Retcon: The series was written before 8th edition, so some things were changed or new additions to the stories were later made.
    • 8th edition added that Malekith had a wife named Allisara, sister to Ariel, who left him upon receiving visions of a dark future he will bring. In the books, she is non-existent.

     The Sundering 

  • Affably Evil: Alandrian is a fairly jovial guy for a ruthless nobleman loyal to an Evil Overlord.
  • Anti-Hero: Malekith starts out like this, being arrogant, hot blooded and manipulative from the very beginning, yet ultimately a decent man at heart. Needless to say, he goes downhill from there.
    • Alith Anar is almost as brutal as the Druchii he hunts, but is still unquestionably loyal to Ulthuan.
  • Appropriated Appellation: The term "Druchii", meaning "dark one", is initially used as a derogatory term by the Elves loyal to the Phoenix King. The Naggarothi later adopt the title themselves a source of pride.
  • Arch-Enemy: Malekith and Imrik (later Caledor).
  • The Arch Mage: Morathi and Thyriol. Naturally, they end up facing off in the Final Battle.
  • Artifact of Doom: The Circlet of Iron, an ancient magical crown Malekith discovers in an ancient ruined city of unknown origin. While the Circlet grants him increased magical power, Malekith's personality seems to take a turn for the darker after he puts the thing on.
  • Big Bad Duumvirate: Malekith and Morathi.
  • Big Good: Imrik of Caledor, later known as Caledor the Conqueror.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Drutheira the cultist, and later sorceress, presents herself as an innocent victim to Carathril. She's anything but. She shows her true colors at the end of the first novel, gloating to Carathril that Bel Shanaar is dead and Malekith will take the Phoenix Throne.
    • Alith's bethrothed Ashniel eventually joins Morathi's coven, and later helps Alandrian hunt down Alith and his men.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The Druchii are ultimately defeated, but countless elves have perished, large portions of Ulthuan have sunken into the sea and most importantly Malekith, Morathi and their followers have survived to trouble the world another day.
  • Body Horror: The descriptions of Malekith's badly burned body are not pleasant.
  • Broken Pedestal: Malekith is one to essentially all of Ulthuan after his betrayal.
  • The Cameo: Kairos Fateweaver makes a brief appearance in Shadow king, bargaining with Morathi.
  • The Conqueror: Malekith in his early years, being largely responsible for the expansion of the elven empire.
    • Imrik of Caledor takes up this title upon his ascension to the throne.
  • Cool Sword: A number of examples, most notably Avanuir, the sword of Malekith, and Lathrain, the sword of Caledor.
  • The Dragon: Alandrian to Malekith.
  • Designated Girl Fight: Morathi and The Everqueen Yvraine in the third book.
  • Eldritch Location: The ruined city where Malekith discovers the Circlet of Iron. An impossibly ancient place of Alien Geometries built by an unknown, long vanished race.
  • Evil Is Bigger: Malekith is described as "taller than any elf" after his rebirth as the Witch-King.
  • Evil Overlord: Malekith, after becoming the Witch-King.
  • Evil Sorcerer: Morathi and her acolytes, and later Malekith as well.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: Hellebron goes from a spoiled young Noblewoman to a fanatical, blood-crazed cultist.
  • God Save Us from the Queen!: Morathi. Natch.
  • Interspecies Friendship: Between Malekith and Snorri Whitebeard.
    • Caledor's closest friend meanwhile is his dragon Maedrethnir.
  • Language Barrier: When the elves and dwarfs first meet, they cannot understand each other. Malekith takes advantage of this during a feast between the two races. He proposes a toast and makes a speech insulting the dwarfs; threatening to kill them and burn their halls (albeit jokingly) should they disrespect him, drawing cheers from his entourage and the ignorant dwarfs.
  • The Promise: While on his deathbed, Snorri Whitebeard makes Malekith swear an oath that the elves and dwarfs will forever remain friends. Malekith swears to his friend that he will uphold his promise. But later betrays the oath when he orchestrates that War of Vengeance/of the Beard.
  • Protagonist Journey to Villain: The series as a whole serves as one for Malekith, chronicling his descent from the ruthless but ultimately heroic prince of Nagarythe, into the sinister Witch-King.
    • The novella "The Bloody Handed" provides one for Hellebron.
  • Start of Darkness: A number of moments could be argued to be this to Malekith, however the assassination of Bel Shanaar is where he really goes Jumping Off the Slippery Slope.
    • For Hellebron, this moment comes after her rejection by Morathi.
  • Tragic Bromance: How the friendship between Malekith and Snorri ultimately turns out.
  • You Shall Not Pass!: Yeasir's death, holding off the Druchii forces until his family, Alith and the family of Bel'Shanaar can escape.

     The War of Vengeance/of the Beard 

  • Big Bad: Caledor the Second ultimately takes the role.
  • The Chosen One: Snorri Halfhand believes he's this, courtesy of a prophecy. Turns out he's wrong, the prophecy actually refers to his cousin Morgrim, and Snorri gets himself killed trying to pursue it.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: When their armies meet, Snorri Halfhand manages to coerce Caledor II into a duel. Unfortunately, Snorri severely underestimated his opponent, as Caledor very easily (and quickly) cuts him down without breaking a sweat.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: The Skaven appear briefly in The Great Betrayal, with the Dwarfs not yet knowing what they are.
  • Elves vs. Dwarves: The titular War of Vengeance; fought between the Asur of Ulthuan and the Dwarfs of the Karaz Ankor.
  • Fantastic Racism: Expressed by both sides.
  • Fantastic Slur: Caledor uses a number of colourful slurs to refer to the the Dwarfs, such as "mole", "mud-dweller" or "pig".
  • Grey and Gray Morality: Ultimately both the Elves and Dwarfs share the blame for the conflict, and both commit their share of extremely questionable actions over the course of the story.
  • Jerkass: Caledor II. Big time.
  • Meaningful Name: Snorri gets his title "Halfhand" due to an encounter with the Skaven in an abandoned Karak which results in Snorri getting his fingers bitten off on one hand.
  • Nice Guy: Prince Imladrik, especially compared to his brother Caledor II. He doesn't share the racist views rampant amongst his kin, and see's the dwarfs as people rather than a lesser species. He is polite and friendly to the dwarfs (especially to the likes of Snorri), learns the dwarfen language of Khazalid and studies and respects their culture. His Establishing Character Moment in the first book was to even offer Snorri and Morgrim a ride to Karaz-a-Karak via his dragon.
  • Pyrrhic Victory: The Dwarfs ultimately win the war, killing Caledor in the process. But at the cost of countless lives on both sides, essentially shattering the power of both empires and leaving them at the mercy of their real enemies.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: King Gotrek Starbreaker and Prince Imladrik. Unfortunately, their attempts to bring peace are ultimately futile.
  • Royal Brat:
    • Caledor the Second is an arrogant, spoiled Manchild who would prefer to hunt and drink fine wine than actually rule his kingdom.
    • Snorri Halfhand is a warmongering glory hound who dismisses the wisdom of his father at every turn and often tries to antagonize the elves.
  • Shout-Out:

     The Rise of Nagash 

  • And Your Little Dog, Too!: Before he buries his brother Thutep alive, Nagash gloats that not only will he take the throne, but he will take his wife Neferem as well.
  • Big Bad: Nagash of course.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Nagash is vanquished, but at the cost of the entire Nehekharan civilization and the lives of countless heroes. Not to mention that it's only a matter of time before he rises again....
  • Brother–Sister Incest: The Lahmian royal line tends to practice this.
  • Cain and Abel: Nagash and Thutep.
  • Decoy Protagonist: In the first novel Akhmen-Hotep, the priest-king of Ka-Sabar, initially appears to be being set up as the main protagonist until his death halfway through the book.
  • The Dragon: Arkhan, to Nagash.
  • Eviler Than Thou: Nagash ultimately proves himself this to every other villainous character in the series. Which is one hell of an accomplishment.
  • Evil vs. Evil: Nagash against the Dark Elf sorcerers, and later against the Skaven.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: Arkhan the Black goes from a whore mongering wastrel to the right hand of the most powerful necromancer of all time.
  • Gilded Cage: Nagash does make sure that his dark elf prisoners/tutor's live comfortably while under his captivity; giving them books, food & drink, comfy furniture and fine clothing.
    • This is also Neferata's opinion of her life in the women's palace.
  • I Hate You, Vampire Dad: Abhorash despises Neferata for tricking him into drinking the (flawed) elixir of life, turning him into a vampire and causing him to drink innocent blood when he couldn't control his thirst. He disappears from Lahmia but returns to it's defense once it is besieged by the armies of Alcadizaar. Though he makes it clear that he came back to defend the city and it's people and not for Neferata.
  • Lack of Empathy: One of Nagashs' defining traits which he shows at the beginning of the first book. When his father is killed in battle, he shows no sadness over his passing, and he's actually more interested on how he was killed.
  • Monster Progenitor: Neferata, the first vampire.
  • Villainous Rescue: It's ultimately the Skaven of all people who end up freeing Alcadizaar, and giving him the means to defeat Nagash.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Neferata's actions are initially driven by a desire to save Lahmia from her corrupt and incompetent brother.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Once Nagash learns enough about dark magic from the dark elves he imprisoned, he kills them when they attempt to escape and consumes their souls.

     The Legend of Sigmar 

  • Becoming the Mask: Gerreon hates Sigmar, believing that he sent his beloved brother Trinovantes to his death and swears vengeance. He goes to the hag woman, Grainne, and Grainne tells to him to pretend to forgive Sigmar, grow close to him as a friend and when the time is right, he will take his revenge. In the years that follow, Gerreon grows so close to Sigmar that he even doubts his need for retribution. Ultimately, he goes through with it, nearly killing Sigmar and killing his sister (and Sigmar's betrothed) Ravenna.
  • The Dragonslayer: Sigmar win's the allegiance of King Siggurd and the Brigundian's after he slays the Dragon Ogre, Skaranoak (who is revealed to have killed Siggurd's son)
  • Godzilla Threshold: When it is clear that Nagash is too powerful for Sigmar to defeat, he has no choice but to use Nagash's Crown of Sorcery in order to even the odds.
  • Face–Heel Turn: Count Markus and Count Siggurd, once loyal followers of Sigmar, become bloodthirsty fiends bent on the destruction of humanity once they are turned into vampires.
  • Ignored Epiphany: Gerreon goes through this, eventually getting so close to Sigmar in an attempt to betray him that he actually begins to harbor doubts that Sigmar deliberately sent his brother to his death. Unfortunately he throws this aside and goes through with his misguided plans anyway.
  • Never Live It Down: In-universe, Count Aldred's sister, Marika, never forgave her brother for attempting to sacrifice her to the mist daemons under the belief that her sacrifice would lift the curse afflicting Marburg. Which is one of the main reasons why she conspires with Count Marius to assassinate her brother.
  • Oh, Crap!: Kar Odacen convinces the warlord Cormac Bloodaxe to partake in a ritual that will give their forces the power to breach Middenheim's walls. Just before the ritual is completed, Cormac realizes too late that Odacen intends to make him a sacrifice to summon a Bloodthirster of Khorne.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: Part of the reason that Chaos makes so much progress in the second book is because, rather than fighting in the Leeroy Jenkins manner that Norscans normally used, they imitated the Imperial armies and fought in disciplined formations, letting the Empire know that they were led by someone particularly dangerous.
  • Sex for Services: Sigmar offers Queen Freya of the Asoborns armor, weapons and horses in exchange for her allegiance. To seal the deal, Freya demands one night of sexual intercourse with Sigmar. Which he accepts. The resulting coitus gets Freya pregnant with two bastard sons of Sigmar.
  • That Man Is Dead: When he is taken in by the Norsii Sorcerer Kar Odacen, Gerreon forsakes his birth name and embraces the new name given to him: "Azazel".
  • Young Future Famous People: Azazel escapes the destruction of a norscan village led by Sigmar as the latter hunts for the former. He is accompanied by the only survivor. A young boy by the name of Morkar, who would later become Morkar the Uniter and the first Everchosen of Chaos.

     Skaven Wars: The Black Plague 

  • The Plague: The titular Black Plague, engineered by the Skaven to aid their conquest of the Empire.

Example of: