...always remember, young ones: we who keep the traditions alive are as vital as our brothers and sisters who fight with arms...
Short and stocky, this dark skinned man accompanies his friend K'harg into battle, and for many year has documented the victories of the Hulun. However, as the years pass Ozrael is finding it hard to keep up with the youthful vigour of his war chief, and though he still is a dead shot with the bow, many fear his fighting days may soon be over. He is a compelling storyteller and excellent singer. As keeper of the Hulun's oral tradition he is one of the "big four" of the Hulun, including K'harg, Fanwé and Moraath.
Ozrael is forty-five years old.
Born less than two years after K'harg, the two men grew up in a band allied to the warlord G'heeg. His mother was a scout and craftswoman, whilst his father- unusually- was a sorcerer. Ozrael was always mischievous and quick with his tongue, meaning that he often got into scrapes with other boys. K'harg was always there to get him out of trouble howver, and Ozrael was always there to talk their way out of confrontations with their elders. The two boys were like brothers- in fact, they were distant cousins.
Fascinated by the ancient legends of the gods Ozrael was considered a likely candidate for shamanism. However, his way with words and burgeoning arcane powers- manifesting as simple tricks and conjuring meant he was entrusted to the ancient storyteller Helem, who taught him the traditonal music and stories of the Hulun.
He was saddened at having not embarked on his trial with K'harg, owing to differences in age and chosen path. As the reached the later years of their teens Ozrael was even more upset at not being invited to join his friend on raids. reasoning that legends were being made that he should bear witness too, Ozrael trained with the scouts and his skill with the bow soon earned him a place alongside his childhood friend.
Tyranny of G'heeg and ExpulsionEdit
As young Hulun warriors Ozrael and K'harg eagerly participated the raiding and pillaging characteristic of their band. However, Ozrael soon realised that their constant plundering of the settled peoples was having a devastating effect on agriculture and the production of trade goods that the Hulun depended upon. Ozrael explained to K'harg that ultimately G'heeg's activites would lead to the weakening of the Hulun. K'harg remained unconvinced, however and reassurred his friend that it was all part of the Hulun tradition.
As G'heeg expanded his grip upon the plains, however, Ozrael and K'harg found themselves in conflict with many of their tribal brothers. G'heeg treated his captives with cruelty, declaring himself war-chief of all Hulun and any not rallying to his banner no better than a pariah. Around this time Ozrael began to paly a less active role in warfare, attempting to influence the chief through the tribal elders whilst simultaneously venturing across the plains to assess the wider political situation. Seeing that the Empire was threatening to extend its foothold in the plains, he reasoned that the threat would be repelled by a united Hulun threat. He also learned that many of the bands would never ally with G'heeg, and sought to end the warlord's tyranny.
Reuniting with K'harg he found that his old friend shared many of his grievances, and that K'harg had developed a significant following as one of the most respected warriors amongst G'heeg's host. Seeking the advice of the elders- including the Hulun High Shaman- he was advised that the only way to resolve the issue would be for K'harg to face G'heeg in single combat.Ozrael was not convinced that K'harg could defeat G'heeg, who at that time was at the height of hs powers, and pleaded with K'hag to join him. But K'harg refused and, with his band of supporters at hsi side, marched on G'heeg's camp to confront him. Reluctantly Ozrael joined him.
K'harg was bested in battle but shown uncharacteristic mercy by the tyrant, believing that the dishonour of not dying in battle would marginalise the warrior. Ozrael was exiled along with all of K'harg's supporters, including Lek and Tolor.
Exile and Three RiversEdit
Ostracised from the Hulun tribe, Ozrael persuaded the shamed K'harg that their future lay as guardians of the settled peoples. At Three Rivers Ozrael met Daath and helped him establish himself as Three Rivers chieftain, expelling Imperial forces. K'harg's small band defended the village against Imperial reprisals, as well as raids by Tolda and other Hulun bands. Ozrael began to consolidate their position by forming alliances with the Beyond-theRiver Clan, fearful of both G'heeg's belligerance and the burgeoning Imperial presence at Rem.
Ozrael met his future wife, Sasha, amongst the bands north of the river, and forged close ties with them. When Moraath approached K'harg to protect her refugees, it was Ozrael who negotiated their passage and in turn watched as K'harg's following grew. He learned the art of trade and commerce from Daath. OZrael was more than just a canny negotiator: he was becoming a seasoned diplomat.
Ozrael had always possessed an uncanny ability to detect which way the winds were blowing: seeing that K'harg would one day have to lead not just a loose alliance of bands, but also a whole tribe, he inducted K'harg in some of the bardic arts. To his surprise K'harg was an excellent pupil, and with Ozrael's assistance became a powerful orator.
With the support of the sorceress Fanwé, the backing of the Beyond-the-River clan and the assistance of Moraath's Pariahs of Empala Ozrael believed they at last had the strength to depose of G'heeg; however, the emerging leadership agreed that out-and-out war with G'heeg's forces would lead to the collapse of the tribe, the together engineered the duel between G'heeg and K'harg. k'harg easily defeated the tyrant, and they moved their attentions to the forces massing ouside Rem.
Battle of Rem and AftermathEdit
Ozrael was an important figure during the Battle of Rem, leading a force of scouts and other light combatants against the left flank of the combined Tolda, Raven and Imperial armies. They suffered many losses but ultimately encircled the enemy force. Though Ozrael later turned the entire battle into a song that wioll almost certainly outlive him, he is reluctant to discuss the battle outside of a ritual context. He killed many that day and is said to be haunted by the faces- especially of the young imperial conscripts to this day.
With the Hulun united and the enemy repelled, Ozrael found himself one of the closest confidantes of the most powerful man in the region. Keen to ensure that the situation did not collapse, Ozrael spent several years travelling between the bands and settled places, ensuring the peace was maintained. With Moraath's help he revived many of the ancient tribal traditions of the plains, most significantly turning the seasonal druidic meets into grand, inter-tribal events at which peace deals, grazing rights and the release of prisoners could be negotiated.
Ozrael's wife, Sasha, bore him several children, but the couple have had a troubled relationship. When not travelling betwen bands OZrael feels his place should be beside K'harg, whereas Sasha- an influential sorceress amongst the Beyond-the-River clan- was not prepared to leave her people. As such, she has raised her children apart from Ozrael, and even has children by another husband.
Night of FlamesEdit
Ozrael was dismayed by the Night of Flames and one of the most vociferous denouncers of the High Shamns conspiracies. For this reason Moraath was unwilling to allow Ozrael close involvement with her attempts to restore order, especially given his familial ties with those bands north of the river whom had been implicated in the conspiracy. Ozrael left K'harg's band to join Sasha- whose sister had been slain in the massacre- in her quest for revenge. Ultimately, he concluded that his place was beside his childhood friend, and he left Sasha to return to K'harg. He has not spoken with her since, and has not seen his children for three years.
Role in the Story so FarEdit
During the build-up to the Feast of Xa Ozrael prepared the tribal drummers- including Tudaam and Lugana- for their role in the annual celebration. He shares the traditional warrior drink of bull's blood, buttermilk and fermented barley with them, and encourages Lugana to relate the story of Arag, Xa and Miromar. Later, to the surprise of many, he joins the expeditionary force led by K'harg to repel the Raven invaders.