The Prophecy of Armag the Twice-Born


Kingmaker


24 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I penned this poem-styled prophecy for my tabletop Kingmaker game. I took a few liberties--for example, I included Gozreh along with Pharasma as the "antagonists" of the prophecy, as a hook for the party's inquisitor of Gozreh. Neil Spicer's Black Sisters just inspire that much creativity on my part!

The Prophecy of Armag the Twice-Born:

“A son of Mammoths, Tiger’s clan
“He came upon the Stolen Lands.
“By sword he smote, and rage he swore
“To subjugate all in his war.”

“But pride for pride, and blood for blood,
“With Gorum’s aid, did he succumb
“To boasting loud, with haughty eye
“That he, Armag, would never die.”

“To Gozreh and Pharasma’s eyes
“The boast was nothing but a lie.
“’How dare,’ said they, ‘Armag should cry
“’That he, mere man, should never die!’”

“The Pale One plotted from her home
“To steal him to her Yard of Bones.
“When she and Gozreh had their way,
“That time was Armag’s dying day.”

“Red dragon sent by vengeful gods
“Ripped out Armag’s heart with its claws.
“But Gorum had last laugh that day;
“Armag’s black soul was here to stay.”

Ovinrbaane, so named the Sword
“Was crafted by the Iron Lord
“To keep the warrior’s soul interred
“Until the stars had their last word.”

“And born again, he shall return
“To widow wives, your fields to burn.
“Twice-Born, Armag, with damning cry
“Shall show the gods he’ll never die.”

“Gyronna’s chosen, without Name!
“Black Sisters wielding hatred’s flame!
“They’ll crack the Earth, and bleed the Sky:
“Armag Twice-Born shall never die!”


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Love it.
I get my copy of BfB in the next couple days. Ill post more elaborately then.

I would only say drop the 's' on Yard of Bones. I know it is a proper title, but it doesn't seem necessary. For all your great work that's my only nitpick lol.

Grand Lodge

Rhys Grey wrote:

I penned this poem-styled prophecy for my tabletop Kingmaker game. I took a few liberties--for example, I included Gozreh along with Pharasma as the "antagonists" of the prophecy, as a hook for the party's inquisitor of Gozreh. Neil Spicer's Black Sisters just inspire that much creativity on my part!

** spoiler omitted **

Pretty cool Rhys!


Nice!


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Consider this stolen.

Sovereign Court Owner - Enchanted Grounds, President/Owner - Enchanted Grounds

Sigh.

You're exactly 10 days too late with your awesome inspiration. I've been weaving Gyrona's cult into my campaign as a major antagonist, with plans to run the converted Tomb of the Lizard King as its culmination. I did the Pathfinder Society scenario The Pallid Plague last weekend in place of the "stock" Gyrona cultist encounter. Your poem would have been an awesome plant during the end encounter. Now I have to contrive some other way to get it in there...

Well done!


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Thanks, all; I'm glad it's liked!

@BornofHate: That's actually a good suggestion.

I used this last night. The party had cornered and subdued the surviving priestess of Gyronna, and in answer to their interrogation, she (well, I) recited the poem in its entirety, gradually raising her voice until the last stanza was screamed in triumph. The players, dumbfounded, were silent for several seconds before the inquisitor decided it was time to execute her. Good times! :)


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Rhys Grey wrote:

Thanks, all; I'm glad it's liked!

@BornofHate: That's actually a good suggestion.

I used this last night. The party had cornered and subdued the surviving priestess of Gyronna, and in answer to their interrogation, she (well, I) recited the poem in its entirety, gradually raising her voice until the last stanza was screamed in triumph. The players, dumbfounded, were silent for several seconds before the inquisitor decided it was time to execute her. Good times! :)

I litterally laughed out loud.

::dumbfounded PCs:: inquisitor shrugs "...screw it, lets kill her""

Grand Lodge

BornofHate wrote:
Rhys Grey wrote:

Thanks, all; I'm glad it's liked!

@BornofHate: That's actually a good suggestion.

I used this last night. The party had cornered and subdued the surviving priestess of Gyronna, and in answer to their interrogation, she (well, I) recited the poem in its entirety, gradually raising her voice until the last stanza was screamed in triumph. The players, dumbfounded, were silent for several seconds before the inquisitor decided it was time to execute her. Good times! :)

I litterally laughed out loud.

::dumbfounded PCs:: inquisitor shrugs "...screw it, lets kill her""

Awesome!


I so wish that I had come across this two sessions ago - my Black Sisters would have recited this in stereo. I would've had the two ladies of hack at the table recite it stanza by stanza as the rogue was disabling the glyph-trapped hallway. *sighs*

Great stuff!


I never got to run the tomb he was in since the players made a deal with him to handle another NPC, whose name I can't remember.

I will use the Tomb for another adventure one day. I might make him into my own version of Warduke using some plot device that means he can be defeated, but never truly die. My own personal human Tarrasque.

PS:The poem is nice also. :)


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Great poem!
If my group will ever come that far, I will use it. Thanks for sharing this!


1 person marked this as a favorite.

I will need that. But the two girls in our group are not so good with english. So, I translated it in german... If anyone is interested, here it is:

Prophezeiung von Armag, dem Zweigeborenen

Ein Sohn der Mammuts, Tigersclan
kam in gestohlene Länder!
Mit mächt'gem Schwert und roter Wut
im Krieg sie zu erstürmen!

Gewalt'ger Stolz und heisses Blut
versuchte ihn mit Gorums Stütz
und verkünden tat er, voller Stolz
dass Armag niemals sterben würd.

In Gozrehs und Phantasmas Augen,
war dies nur blosse Prahlerei,
Sie riefen laut: "Wie kann ers wagen,
"dass er sich brüstet, nie zu sterben!"

Die Blasse fasste ihren Plan,
ihn zu rauben für den Knochenhof.
Als es nach ihr und Gozreh ging,
das war des Armags Todestag.

Von Götter Wut gesandt ein roter Drache
riss mit den Klauen Armags Herz,
doch Gorum hatte doch gewonnen,
die Seele Armags blieb auf dieser Welt.

Ovinrbann, so hieß das Schwert,
geschmiedet von dem Eisenherrn,
um einzusperren des Kriegers Seel,
bis Dunkelheit umgibt die Stern.

Doch kommt er wieder, erneut geboren,
wird nehmen Mann und brennen Korn!
"Zweigeborener Armag", wird er rufen,
"ich zeig den Göttern ewig Leben!"

Gyronnas Erwählte, ohne Namen!
Schwarze Schwestern mit Hasses Flamme!
Zerbrechen die Erde und verwunden den Himmel:
Zweigeborener Armag, du sollst nie sterben!

Shadow Lodge

Will take some adapting to fit into my homebrew, but definitely taking this =D Well done and awesome work!

Since the Armag in my game is a Lizardfolk (the barbarian region from whence he'll be coming is explicitly devoid of humans), I'll also be translating it into Draconic, thanks to a handy little translating site I found. Which after I read it I'll allow the players that speak the language to translate.


Yoink!

Thanks man! Fantastic stuff!


That has got to be one of THE most awesome things I've ever seen done for Kingmaker on the forums. And I just plain love epic poetry in general, so... all my congratulations and admiration, Rhys_Grey!


3 people marked this as a favorite.

That was amazing. My own Armag anecdote is laughable (literally) in comparison. I introduced the info on Armag last game (you bet I will be stealing this poem for our next game), and a conversation about witches and their barbarian king took place. Something like this:

Player 1: What do witches want with a barbarian king?
Player 2: Well a barbarian king would enforce a barbarian lifestyle.
Player 1: Yeah?
Player 2: So most people will be living in tents.
Player 1: Yeah, so?
Player 2: So you’re less likely to be killed if someone drops a tent on you instead of a house.

I was on the floor.


I LOLed so hard my cat ran out of the house! :D

Shadow Lodge

*slow clap* Well played Kildaere. Well played indeed.

Liberty's Edge

I had one of my players read this aloud tonight after an extensive study montage in their capitol city's library. She read it as one of her character's bard followers (he leads an acting troupe) and really hammed it up. I had gotten about a paragraph into the Armag infodump from Blood For Blood, and remembered, wait, I can do better than this. It was especially fun due to the repetition of how Armag shall never die. The sorcerer has his own ambitions of immortality, and was all, "What's Pharasma's problem, anyway? Why's she gotta be so greedy over one little tenacious soul?" The alchemist considers this, and replies, "I believe it's a matter of precedent..."

Anyway, thanks for sharing. It took a fun story and made it even more engaging for my players.


I'll have to pick this up, since my next Kingmaker will be much more RP-focused and one character is playing a Bard.


dot

Shadow Lodge

Forgot to post an update on this =)

My group learned about this prophecy from one of the other colonists, who pulled their Ruler aside at the Rushlight (which I turned into an annual thing and had them invited to after RRR ended); the two of them considered the facts and determined, within the context of the poem, that it was very likely the sword was possessed of some sort of spirit entity of the original Armag. (Lucky guess!) They also determined who the final verse referred to - I made it less blatant, replacing the first two lines with "Bitter chosen without name / Black sisters weilding shattered flame" as my setting's replacement for Gyronna, a harpy goddess named Irshya, has the titles "The Bitter Tear" and "The Shattered Song" - but other than determining that they'd be dealing with harpies as well as lizardfolk they couldn't make much sense of it. The Ruler shared the news and the poem with her council when she got back home.

I had the poem show up again when I ran the Malzagorta Niska event. As I was running it after RRR rather than at the beginning of it, I gave her a few more levels and stronger cohorts, including a harpy bard. When the harpy started her song, I had her singing the prophecy in Aklo, which enough PCs spoke to get the message.

They'll hear it again when the horde attacks Tatzylford at the beginning of BFB - the barbarians will have warchanters singing it in Draconic - then again from Maray Quintessa (who I've turned into an ally of the Black Sisters), and lastly from the Sisters themselves.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

3.5 year necro! I too, thought this was terribly inspiring. Thanks, Rhys!

The earlier cult leader (who raised a huge presence in my kingdom thanks to multiple cultists being inadvertently assigned positions on the Council, leading to the single page premise in the book filling up over 2 sessions worth of play - that's Kingmaker for you!) swore with her dying breath at the end of Book 2 that Armag would slaughter their kingdom.

The King went hunting for info, so I had this it appear in a prophetic dream to him, complete with the two shadowy Black Sisters chanting it.

I did some audio editing, duping my voice to create a doubling effect and adding some sinister background music (this is minus the references to Gozreh, unnecessary in my campaign).

For anyone who would like to play it to their groups, I invite you to freely have a copy of
The Prophecy of Armag The Twice-Born.mp3 (google drive link).

We podcast our Kingmaker sessions, so I was able to work the warped audio directly into the podcast itself, some of the most fun I've had working with audio.

Thanks again, Rhys!


4 people marked this as a favorite.

This has come up over and over again in my game, so thanks again - we got heaps of use out of it.

Thought I'd share what this led on to, which was the players casting Legend Lore several times about Armag. Here's the various poetic riddle answers that came up:

On Ovinrbaane
Gorum's Lust and Gyronna's Flame,
The sword will bring him back again.
Pass the trial and live the lie,
Armag Twice-Born will never die.

For a warrior strong of mind or arm,
The Trial Ground will not over-harm.
For the weak, they fall to dust - Ovinrbaane tests, as it must.
Alive with chaos, spellcaster's bane,
Ovinrbaane brings all war and pain.
Ever seeking a weilder's swing,
A hard-fought Trial tests the worth of the would-be king.

Explanations:
'Gorum's Lust' would be the desire for war. 'Live the lie' is a reference to the fact that "Armag" is nothing more than a random barbarian warrior, as would be a possessed PC - Armag himself never truly returns from the dead. "A warrior strong of mind or arm" suggests the two different paths to take, and "brings ALL war and pain" suggests the danger of hanging on to Ovinrbaane.

On The Trial Grounds (Armag's Tomb)
Ancient guardian, warrior of old,
Watching still for challengers bold.
Woe to those who cheat the Trial,
Their bones are added to the pile.
Ovinrbaane, the prize awaits,
Illusions and fog confuse your fates.
Show ancient Zorek a warrior's heart...
Or turn coward and the trial begins anew from the start.

Explanations:
This alerts the players that Armag's Tomb is guarded by an active, watching force (by Zorek), and that there are precautions to prevent 'cheating' (like the protections on the walls). For anyone who leaves the Tomb, Zorek will reset the various traps and monsters, making it difficult for parties to enact the 15 minute workday.

On Destroying Ovinrbaane
To the realm of judgement you must go,
To face each man's final foe.
Into your gravestone the sword thrice swing,
See your fate, your future, and feel death's sting.
Armag Twice-Born's soul will die at last pass,
If slain 'neath the sparrow's looking glass.

Explanations:
The realm of judgement is transparently the boneyard. Man's final foe is death, the last thing anyone faces. The sword is swung three times into your own gravestone to destroy it, but obviously looking upon your own grave and future is extremely dangerous. Pharasma's Boneyard is filled with sparrows (psychopomps, creatures who carry the spirits of the dead onward), who will watch eeirely as the destruction takes place, then drag Armag's screaming soul off for judgement.

Dark Archive

My players are going to be floored by this. Thank you Rhys for this amazing piece of work. There is nothing I, or my group, loves more than a well designed prop. Poetry, art, a detailed history of an item... these are the things that turn a game into a campaign.


I'm certainly going to be stealing some of these, great work!

One quick thought. So the original Armag lived about a thousand years ago, and in the Divine quarrel between Gorum and Pharasma his soul got fused with his sword. Ovinrbaane, which has the power to turn it's wielder into a clone of Armag, gets popped into a custom built tomb to ensure only the most worthy can get to it.

Meanwhile, 40 years prior to Kingmaker, the Black Sisters flee Brevoy and try to issue a curse in vengeance. But because prophecy is dicey in the Age of Lost Omens, they take matters into their own hands. They kidnap a Tiger Lord baby, brainwash him into thinking that he's the reincarnation of Armag as he grows, and help him get into a position of power. When he beats Drelev and comes back with tomb looted gear, the Sisters decide that tomb robbing will help give their Armag even more credibility, and so send him into the tomb.... which by random coincidence, contains a relic which will make him think he's the guy he's already been brainwashed into thinking he is!

Is it just me or does this seem a bit of a really strange coincidence? I'm not against a certain amount of "right place, right time" to keep plots going, but I don't know. This seems redundant in a lot of ways?

Has anyone any more thoughts on this?


Morrigan wrote:

Is it just me or does this seem a bit of a really strange coincidence? I'm not against a certain amount of "right place, right time" to keep plots going, but I don't know. This seems redundant in a lot of ways?

Has anyone any more thoughts on this?

I don't think it's supposed to be a coincidence? Or it doesn't have to be, at least. They're high enough level to have access to some fairly powerful divinations. They should have a good idea of what will be the outcome of Armag entering the tomb (before PC interference, of course).

In any case, they raised him to believe that he was Armag reborn. The sword actually turns the wielder into the original Armag, down to (IIRC) changing their face. So he would probably (?) go from thinking, "I am Armag Twice-Born, imbued with the reborn spirit of Armag of old, and these women are my trusted mentors and advisers," to, "I am Armag, the one and only! Who are these black-clad women who dare to order me around?!?" Which is to say, were the PCs not around, his claiming of the sword may not be in their best interest.

(that would be an interesting twist on the setup - Armag goes in, but doesn't come out again right away. The Black Sisters cast spells, find out what's happening, but he's too strong for them. When the PCs arrive, instead of fighting them the Sisters ask them to free him from the sword)

Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder Adventure Path / Kingmaker / The Prophecy of Armag the Twice-Born All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.
Recent threads in Kingmaker