Fonrit; Yanafal Dead

From: Nick Brooke (
Date: Thu 01 May 1997 - 10:42:28 EEST

Ian asks:

> Can anyone tell me if any source material exists dealing with Fonrit in
> general and Afadjann and Kareeshtu in particular (other than the very
> brief mention they get in the Glorantha and Elder Secrets source packs)?

There was a two-page article and full-page map of "The Land of Fonrit" in
Avalon Hill's "Heroes" magazine, v.1 no.6 (years ago). This was written by
Greg Stafford and Sandy Petersen, follows a prototype of the Genertela Book
format, and is rather good:

: INTRODUCTION: Fonrit is a land of pleasant semi-tropical climate whose
: growth is luscious, but not so dense to support elves. For architecture,
: dress, and art, gamemasters should draw upon the cultures of Moslem
: Africa, both the northern Barbary Coast and the western settlements.
: They should exaggerate many traits to portray these exotic lands. For
: instance, the free women wear veils, and both sexes wear draping robes.
: Harems are the rule for rich potentates, guarded by jealous and power-
: ful eunuchs. The upper class is incredibly wealthy and powerful, the
: poor are ruthlessly taxed and beggared into heartless slavery.

There's also a scenario by Sandy set in Karo, the largest city of Afadjann,
which gives us some good local colour (the main processional road is
Dragonwalk; the slums are called the Bluestreets, named after the Veldang
inhabitants; the city ruler is Prince Nakajian, son of the Jann of Afadjann
himself). The scenario is called "The Big Hit", was originally written for
the "Thieves' World" setting, and has a pleasantly conspiratorial lowlife
feel to it.

> I would be especially interested in material expanding upon the social
> order of the Veldang peoples.

I don't know of any offhand, other than the material about the Blueskins of
Zamokil in Paul Reilly and Finula McCaul's epic VeldtTrek in Tales #11. But
that's hardly relevant for the slaves of Fonrit today, I agree.

Hey, guys: let's all clap our hands and say "I Believe in Sandy!" If enough
of us do it, he may bless this list with his illuminating presence one more

                I B E L I E V E I N S A N D Y !

Some good Real-World sources for your setting that I know of: *none* of
these are heavy going, and all are Fun Books that I enjoyed a lot.

"Leo the African" by Amin Maalouf: a very readable novel set in sixteenth
century Morocco and the surrounding Moslem world.

"The Golden Trade of the Moors: West African Kingdoms in the Fourteenth
Century" by Edward Bovill, a gripping history book, one of my faves, with a
ludicrous sub-title: although it covers the history of the trans-Saharan
gold trade, from pre-Roman times right up to the present day, for some
reason the publishers thought it was *all* about the fourteenth century, a
period which takes up just ten pages!

"Salammbo" by Gustave Flaubert: *the* great novel of Carthaginian
decadence, the pages will be practically reeking with exotic spices and
bodily fluids by the time you finish the book. Great fun.

David Weihe writes:

>> IMHO YT was "out of it" following his battle with the Big H... and
>> his (deceased) mortal body was probably laid in its Mausoleum almost
>> immediately thereafter. ("Though Yanafal's Divine Self now resides
>> eternally on the Red Moon, sending blessings to his followers and
>> curses against their foes").

> Surely, if he died in the battle, they would have said that his spirit
> fought on after his death, giving his followers the (claimed non-)
> chaotic ability to engage one's slayer in spirit attack after death.
> Instead, I suggest something like this: [very sensible suggestion cut]

Very tasty: I could buy that, and it's entirely compatible with my own
account (forty days or whatever being as near "almost immediate" as I need
for my purposes: note that the Mausoleum of Yanafal Tarnils itself wasn't
been built until after the Moonrise and Moonson's First Inspiration, as
it's right at the heart of Sacred Glamour, on Red Square itself).

OTOH, I couldn't put it in the cult Mythos and History section without
blowing part of a very enjoyable scenario which *everyone* joining the Red
Army will have gone through. So while I now believe David's suggestion is
the Yanafali Truth (i.e. just twisted enough to be useful!), I won't be
putting it into the published cult. But THANK YOU, anyway.

> It also would kill all rumors that he just died in the battle, without
> really resurrecting.

Frankly, I was keen to *perpetuate* those rumours, as well as any others
that might come along later (or in other folks' games). I didn't want to
give a definitive, incontrovertable account which would scupper literal
readers' own games; by skimming the whole event as "Yanafal won, and was
deified because of it", I get more mythic fun than if I had to detail just
*how* many points of Resurrection were cast, or *why* it was difficult for
him to come back from the DEAD.

NB: Yanafal Tarnils was definitely present at the Four Arrows, and doesn't
appear in the subsequent campaign around Castle Blue, where the Red Emperor
makes his first appearance as a military leader. This is why I'd date
Yanafal's apotheosis to the Four Arrows of Light, esp. as this is when the
Carmanian Empire is finally taken out: just what YT would have wanted to
live to see.

A spin-off: Peter Michaels (I believe) made the wonderfully amusing
suggestion that some special Yanafali Gifts exist, available only to the
Illuminated, including the following:

        Spirit attacks slayer after death
        Explodes upon death for 3D6 damage
        Appears extremely dangerous

...and more of that ilk, *all* of which sound like things *Humakti* would
love to have their god provide. I'm keen... but perhaps this is best as a
Rumour (or on a weirdo's character sheet), rather than an institution?



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