Alkothi admittance

Date: Thu 16 Mar 2000 - 22:17:44 EET

Alex (Of Italian ilk) asks:
>PS: speaking of Alkoth, were can I find a description of the Decapitation
>Ritual of Admittance into the city? I really can't imagine it, much less
>describe it to the players!

Its mentioned in Enclosure, but I'm sure you knew that. There is no detail
on the ritual however. Lets give you some:

Firstly Alkothi is in the Underworld. It is a section of the heroplane in
its own right. In HW terms this means that you have to overcome a reistance
to enter it of w3 or so. Naturally this would be rather difficult for the
average joe. BUT people who belong to a place on the heroplane do not have
to overcome this resistance, as they are innately part of the place. The
Alkoth do not have a problem entering or leaving the place as it is part of
them to enter the land of the dead and then re-enter the land of the living.
Its their mythic cycle. The cycle of Shargash

For a stranger, things are different. If you are attacking the city then
simply to get over the walls requires such an effort, which is one reason why

Orlanthi warriors never tried to fly into Alkoth in the first age. The very
sky above Alkoth is different, it is as it was during the darkness, when the
underworld and the upper world were one. Hence, if you walk through the gate
on a nice sunny day, by the time you come out on the Alkoth side, there is no
Yelm, there is a bleak dark, stormy and malevolent (unless you're an Alkothi,
then its peaceful and wonderous).

Alas, sometimes the Alkothi want other people in their city and they had to
find a way to allow this to happen without having to summon a horde of ritual
help every time someone came to see the Red King etc.

Instead, they have created a quick ritual that makes the visitor and
honourary Alkothi for the time they are there.

Step 1: You are tested by the gate priests for signs of Kazkurtum, who must
not be allowed in, nor ever has. If you are chaotic, or manifest evil ways,
you are not only forbidden entrance, but are attacked and hacked to pieces in
His name. Bear in mind that the Alkothi concept of evil is different to most
people. Disloyalty to ones lord and people is evil, whereas slaughtering
helpless enemies at your lords command is not.

Step 2: You are grabbed by the guards, forced onto a chopping block and then
beheaded with a reed axe. Though the axe does not bite your flesh, it does
bite your soul. In effect you feel dead, you feel seperation of soul and
body and the full horror of that, yet they inhabit the same point and can
interact as normal.

Step 3: You can now survive in the underworld and are allowed through the

Step 4: On leaving the city you are brought before the Shargash mystic who
sits on a pillar by the gate. He sees the heart of you and judges you to be
worthy of renewal. This always happens unless you have committed some crime
or sin within the city. Then you are removed to the Enclosure and given to

Step 5: On leaving the city, you feel soul and body merge as one and feel the
joy of returned life flood through you. However, there is still that
lingering feeling of death, one is never the same after dying.

Alkoth is not a popular place to visit.

Martin Laurie


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