Yelm, the sun god of the Dara Happans, is recognised by the Orlanthi (i.e. the Storm Tribes), but only because Orlanth kills Yelm. Yet the Orlanthi have been partially coopted by the Empire of Wyrms' Friends. The God Learners, on the other hand, want to steal everything from everyone in order to gain greater control of Glorantha and the Other Worlds.
I can't remember an RPG book that has gained so much of my attention. Usually, I glance through an RPG book, maybe reading some chapters in full. With this I read and re-read.
Some quotes I found interesting:
The final contest was of weapons and now Orlanth was angry. So he accepted a sword from the crazy trickster, Eurmal, who can be useful but always in a troublesome way. This sword was a new thing called Death and when Orlanth struck Yelm with it, Yelm died. And then the sun went out.
They wandered for a long time there, until unreliable Eurmal guided them to the Hall of the Dead, where Ernalda and Humakt and Barntar and all the others were. There was Yelm, also. And Orlanth saw what he had to do. He had to atone for what he had done and save the Bright
Emperor, too. They tested each other again and finally were reconciled.
Their new cooperation spawned the last rightful god ever to be born, Arachne Solara, the spider. She wove a net, which was the Great Compromise. It started Time and separated gods from mortals.
We will bring down both the God Learners, who loot our myths like we raid each other's cattle, and the wyrmtalkers, who think that you can worship anything, even a crawling snake, so long as you call it Orlanth. We are not just people who make new things. We are a people who fight for what is right.
We organise ourselves into bloodlines, then clans, then tribes, then kingdoms. Of these associations the most important is the clan. Clans control their own pieces of territory. They are governed by chiefs, who may be male or female. Each chief appoints a ring, a council of seven worthies who provide advice. Wisely chosen rings are balanced between worshippers of the various Orlanthi deities, so that their counsely draws on life's many spheres.
How To Play A Yelmite Noble
- Straighten your spine, balance your shoulders and stick out your chin.
- Speak in bold, declarative sentences.
- Never admit to uncertainty.
- Be offended.
- When in doubt as to what to be offended by, select any of the following: insults to the Sky gods, darkness magic, sexual license, disrespect for tradition, presumptuous women, irreverence toward rightful authority, the Orlanthi ‘Lightbringers Quest' story.
- Fight bravely for what you believe in.
- Obey rightful authority.
- Think rigidly.
- Treat all women as accoutrements. Treat all peasants and foreigners as chattels.