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The Maboder


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I'm been taking notes for a planned campaign with my group this summer, tentatively called "Refugee Quest", in which some surviving Maboder escape the Telmori and Jonas Wulf to reach Hendrikiland (where my daughter's game is taking place). It would start in 1605-7. It combines the community-based RPing of the standard clan game with desperation and exploration.

The old Book of the Red Cow (precursor to the canon Red Cow campaign) is of course very useful for filling in the Split Waters clan, and there are some snippets about the Black Oak clan in "The Road of Kings".

I think they're Axe Orlanthi with some Old Hendriki influence.

Now the Maboder are noted as a matrilineal Triatry. They were ruled by queens until 1601. Going over the history in The Coming Storm, they were seemingly primarily derived from the Brustings and two clans of the Torkani - the Godori and the Lissendings, who were harried to near extinction by the Telmori in the 1460s. The BotRC writeup of the Split Waters clan states they split off from the Volsaxi, and I'm inclined to link them and to a lesser extent the Black Oak to Esrolian influence among the Hendriki via wives from the Adjusted Lands. I'd also connect them to the Earth clans who later formed the Curtali in the vicinity of the Dreven River. The Six Stones clan have a male chieftain mentioned and an exogamous marriage in the book (tCS), so I'd guess they and their Brusting ancestors were not as Earth and Darkness aligned as the others. They also have horses, and all three grow grain rather than raise many cattle. I take the Torkani as including originally Kitori clans, and they clearly played a role in the foundation of the new tribe, though the Maboder don't worship Argan Argar or the Dark Woman, favoring Ernalda and even Aldrya.

The basic notion is that some of the surviving families and lone stragglers fled Sartar rather than be enslaved by the Wulflanders. Prax is about to be invaded by Sor-Eel (1608) - most likely via the Pavis Road outside Stonegate - and may have even camped in Wulfsland - so it's a bad choice, while the clans' distant ancestry among the Hendriki and the Kitori (!) offers them better chance at succor than the hostile Quivini, who blame the Maboder for not mustering in 1602. Some slaves might have gone with the Lunars to Prax, so there's an opportunity to look for kin there (and run all the old Prax scenarios) after the oldsters and children are safe in Volsaxar.


Any Comments / Suggestions ? Anything I've overlooked?

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The Brusting survive among the Red Cow as the Sardaling bloodline. Of course, this doesn't mean that a group of them couldn't have gone off to join with Mabodh May-Not-Be-Moved to form the Six Stones clan, but just making a note of it. The Split Waters seem to claim Eoric's Stead and a chunk of land around it. The old Red Cow material just says the Split Waters don't respect the border markers at the Finger and come down to hunt there. Though until now there's been no direct indication of this, they could have some roots in the Osmann clan. There could have been a split/rivalry/feud among the Osmann when they joined with the Drutorae (to form the Red Cow) after being hounded by the Telmori, with some of them going across the river to ultimately join with Mabodh instead. Of course, they are a War clan, so maybe they don't need more elaborate reasons or background to come over to do their thing in Red Cow territory.

Also, the Lissendings survive the Telmori scourge as a Torkani clan instead of being annihilated  or even moved (presumably thanks to living on the other side of the river). They don't seem too likely to contribute to the Maboder to my eyes as they are still shown in their lands when other clans were cowering in forts. The Godori survive as Torkani too, but it seems more feasible parts of them could be in the Black Oak, at least.

Going to look for kin taken as slaves as the reason to go to Prax sounds brilliant and possibly delightfully heavy material for stories. 

Edited by Grievous
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The Book of Red Cow was my first foray into the Red Cow clan, both as a writer and a GM, because I became fascinated by the destruction of the Maboder. I chose to play through that with my players members of their neighbors, the Red Cow. Later I wanted to play out the Sartar Rising struggle and moved the campaign timeline forward, and that became the kernel of The Coming Storm.

@Jeff had a big influence at this point, and we moved some things away from the presentation that we had in the Book of Red Cow. So that information supersedes the Book of Red Cow where they conflict, though much of the information on the Maboder triaty is usable. The key ideas are on p.57 with the Maboder picking up arable farming etc. and the differences as to how their fall occurs under Kathelranda.They are from survivors of all the clans decimated by the Telmori, but not one whole clan (as many of those end up also forming part of the Red Cow, Dolutha or Torkani clans). It is best to think of them as anyone who saw Mabodh as the 'strong leader' they should rally to, with her plan of abandoning cattle, pigs and sheep for grain. They may even have taboos about eating meat etc. and be vegans. I would think they are mixed to origin as a result, but most of the clans here have a 'fictive' history derived from various predecessors. The Cinsina are predominately Axe Orlanthi though, so it seems quite likely that those are present. It seems quite possible some could claim ancestry and protection from clans in that area.

Some survivors of the massacre do avoid becoming slaves in Wulfsland, see the 'Daughters of Mabodh' and in particular Enastara the Red on p.125 of The Coming Storm. They may or may not considers themselves Daughters of Mabodh. This would depend on whether their intent was to free their enslaved kin (yes) or just abandon them (no).

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  • 2 years later...

Have you read the pseudo historical novel Queen's Heir? Although presented as taking place in the lands of the Hittites, it is obviously Glorantha and it is the stroy of the heir of the Maboder devoted to Humakt. First volume is quite good, the second less so.

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