[Glorantha]JarEel's Death

From: Peter Metcalfe <metcalph_at_quicksilver.net.nz>
Date: Fri, 25 Jun 2004 00:16:08 +1200

Chris Lemens:

>If Jar-eel survives having her heart torn out (as she
>must in some sense, because she shows up at Dwernapple
>or whenever it was that she and Annstad met),

Not necessarily. She is only required to survive the removal of her heart _if_ the Battle of Heroes took place during the Telmori revolt before Argrath's invasion of Tarsh. But the textual evidence does not support this for a number of reasons.

The unadorned text [shorn of northern and southern annotations] is simply:

  1. The Lunars send another assault, which is aided by the Telmori revolt.
  2. Argrath had aid from Harrek and Gunda, who led the Free Army. Argrath destroyed the northern monster army with the aid of the Black Spear and his own brave men of Sartar. The Free Army destroys the other army.
  3. Argrath then defeats the Telmori in an ardous battle and creates the Wolfskins.
  4. Argrath marries the Feathered Horse Queen and then invades Tarsh.

There's no indication that JarEel was present at that time and the Northern annotator, who could be expected to know such things, is silent on the conflicts until the invasion of Tarsh.

Looking at the Battle of Heroes, we see that it takes place near Bagnot in Tarsh. What is Harrek doing there? Argrath hasn't invaded Tarsh at this point because he's busy defending Sartar against two armies and the Telmori. Moreover Harrek by the other evidence of the Southern Annotator is busy leading the Free Army against the chaos monsters that have emitted from the Print in the south. Bagnot is a long way from the Print.

Is the Battle of Heroes slightly misplaced in that it takes place chronologically that it takes place during Argrath's invasion of Tarsh? Again the text argues against this. The Battle of Heroes has the Lunars marching to save their monsters and meeting the Sartarites near Bagnot. Yet from our other evidence of the invasion, nobody knows anything about these monsters or the Battle of Heroes. It's simply the Grazers kill the Tarshite King while the Sartarites capture his successor while he's waiting for the Provincial Army or the Red Emperor.

So when does the Battle of Heroes take place? IMO the most likely period is when Argrath goes on the Lightbringers Quest. Nothing is said about what happens to Sartar during that time save that the Lunars control all when Argrath returns. However KoS p179 has a King List which has Argrath disappearing. Harrek is crowned as his successor before departing to be succeeded by Phargentes, son of Pharandros.

So the Battle of Heroes took place not in Part 3 of Argrath's Saga but Part 5. Seeing the Empire conquer Tarsh, Argrath flees to Broyan's Hall and from there undergoes the LBQ. But instead of rolling over, the Sartarites crown Harrek as their King and continue the struggle. In his reign, Harrek takes the battle to the gates of Bagnot, where he kills JarEel in the Battle of Heroes. Having done so, Harrek tires of Dragon Pass and goes elsewhere, never to return. It is then the Lunars finally conquer Sartar before Argrath's return.

Why didn't the Southern Anotator put it there? Because in leaving the kingdom some years before it actually fell to the Lunars, Argrath looks yellow.

This suggestion has the advantage in that it doesn't require a wimpy allegorical interpretation of JarEel's heart, preserves the epic finality of the Battle of Heroes and places JarEel's final death within a more appropriate time period.

--Peter Metcalfe

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Received on Thu 24 Jun 2004 - 18:04:04 EEST

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