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Carnifex Servitors

by Geoff Gander

I've been paying attention to what's been said concerning the Carnifex, the Kopru, Thanegioth, and so on, so here's my theory on the relationship between all of these:

Long ago, the Carnifex were a strong race (either the original or Y'hog Carnifex, take your pick, though I'd assume the latter), who, thanks to the whispered promises of the Outer Beings, sought to challenge the natural laws of young Mystara by creating their own creatures and playthings, as a perverse imitation of both the Immortals and the greater Carnifex that preceded them. Unlike their elder brethren, the Y'hog Carnifex were little more than beasts in some respects, with much less control over their primal sides. They flaunted their powers and created many different kinds of creatures, experimenting with life until they came up with a handful of servitors who not only bred true; they were viable life forms.

The troglodytes were among the first of these - simple creatures that served as warriors, labourers, and as food if need be. They occupied the bottom rung of Carnifex society.

To build upon their first achievement, the Carnifex then created the Sis'thik, a beast not only capable of fighting, but capable of surviving in drier climates - a feat which the Carnifex were not capable of doing for prolonged periods. These creatures were more wilful, and were not so easily cowed. In the wars against the Lhomarrians, many Sis'thik escaped their masters while on Davania and fled southwards, towards the drying lands that would become the Aryptian and Izondian Deserts. There they have remained to this day, living in their isolated cities hidden between great crags of rock in cliff faces.

The penultimate creation was the V'ruggh, a hideous beast of burden, which, when unleashed into battle, would rend both friend and foe limb from limb. It did not take long for the Carnifex to decide that these were more trouble than they were worth, and some can be found today in the great caverns beneath the Adakkian Mounts, and in the deepest corners of the Jungle Coast. It is rumoured that the Carnifex living beneath the Adakkian Mounts (the so-called Deep Carnifex) have been able to domesticate some of these beasts somewhat. Rest assured nothing good can come of it.

The final, and possibly greatest, creation was the Kopru. Created to be of strong mind, the Kopru proved in some cases more intelligent than their masters. It was the Kopru who occupied the second-highest rung of Carnifex society, carried about in great heated, water-filled metal containers by Troglodyte slaves along the streets of Y'hog. It was also the Kopru who were entrusted with governing Va'ath-Zhemoth, as the Carnifex believed their own lives were far too precious to waste in such a "mundane" place. The Kopru soon seized control of affairs on the islands, and when no word came from Y'hog after many years, they abandoned the Troglodytes to their own fates while they made their way to the superheated pools deep underground, still controlling Troglodytes now and then when it suited them. Ultimately, a plague swept through the islands, one which killed the Troglodytes in droves, leaving nothing in its wake. So the islands have remained to this day, save for the time when humans came to those islands, but that is Matt's story...