Sunday, June 16, 2013

Inspiring Illustrations - The Dark Rider

12). The Dark Rider

Bilibin is a throwback among the tribes of the Rus who live on the edge of the Kimmerian steppes in small cities and large towns. The Rus were latecomers to Hyperborea and the lands and people are disturbingly strange to them. They left behind their gods when they arrived in the aftermath of a great storm that swept them from their conquered home and deposited several town and villages in this strange land, so now most have become followers of Hyperborea's multitude of deities; from Hellenic Apollo to sloth-bodied Xathoqqua. But it is to Nerthus that Bilibin pays worship; she who is a Goddess of peace but demands the sacrifice of men.

It has been long since the last believer in Nerthus dwelt among the Rus, who seem determined to forget their past and somehow adapt to all the ways of Hyperborea without seeming rhyme or reason. Bilibin is said to have encountered the Goddess in her chariot and become her lone priest. His aim is to return the Rus to her worship and he isn't above killing them all to do so.

While he is a true-believer in Nerthus, Bilibin is not a cleric but is instead a powerful Warlock, having been both a warrior and a mage in his younger years. He now rides throughout the land of Hyperborea but returns again and again to his people, the Rus, bringing with him death and destruction to all who fail to return to the worship of Nerthus.

For the most part he is falls upon travelers and small villages and beheads all those who he sees as heretics to the true faith. His actions have earned him the title of the Dark Rider, the bringer of  death and he has little success in his work of conversion. 

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