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If it is only after that we understand what has come before, then we understand nothing. Thus we shall define the soul as follows: that which precedes everything.
Ajencis, The Third Analytic of Men

2147 Year-of-the-Tusk, the Mountains of Demua

In Ishuäl, the secret refuge of the Kûniüric High Kings, Anasûrimbor Ganrelka II’s household is wiped out by a plague save for Ganrelka’s bastard son and a Bardic Priest. The Priest molests the boy muttering “There are no crimes when no one is left alive.” The Priest is then killed by the boy.

Later, a group of Dûnyain refugees seems to stumbles upon Ishuäl and scales its walls. One of them finds the boy and asks why he fears them, to which the boy replies, “So long as men live, there are crimes!” and the man says “No, child, only so long as men are deceived.”

The Dûnyain and boy find shelter in Ishuäl against the Apocalypse, and the world forgets them for two thousand years.


Nonmen, Sranc, and Men:
The first forgets,
The third regrets,
And the second has all of the fun.

—Ancient Kûniüri nursery rhyme

Late Autumn, 4109 Year-of-the-Tusk, the Mountains of Demua

1962 years later, the Dûnyain are sent dreams by someone demanding that they send to him his son. They meet in the Labyrinth called the Thousand Thousand Halls where they decide that this “desecration” cannot be tolerated.

Anasûrimbor Kellhus, the son in question, sets out of Ishuäl to find his father, while the “dreamers” descend to the Thousand Thousand Halls where they will die.

Kellhus wanders around until he is too weak to continue and succumbs. A trapper named Leweth finds him buried in snow and saves him. Kellhus possesses the man’s thoughts using his much superior intellect and the fact that he can read his thoughts through his face. Leweth tells Kellhus about the No-God, the Consult, Sorcery, the Gods, and the Apocalypse, all of which Kellhus dismisses as superstition.

Eventually, Leweth and Kellhus are attacked by a band of Sranc and are forced to leave their cabin. Leweth is wounded and tells Kellhus about the Nonman Ruins to the west. Kellhus leaves him for the Sranc.

Kellhus moves on and encounters a deranged Nonman Qûya.[Notes 1] The two fight and Kellhus is stunned by the Nonman’s use of sorcery. He flees while the Nonman’s booming voice says “I WILL REMEMBER.”


Point of viewEdit







  1. Although this Nonman is not named, Bakker revealed outside of the text that it is Cet’ingira, or Mekeritrig.
  • This chapter also includes two sections using an omniscient point of view.

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