Saturday, 26 February 2011

The Fury of the Storm joins the Space Wolf ranks: Rikulfur Gudbrandr (and Arni)

The weather of Fenris is cold and ruthless with no exceptions. Savage lightning, punishing snow storms, booming thunder and howling winds are common place and in many ways this has hardened the people of Fenris, the conditions having shaped their lives. However, there are those who are an exception to this normal way of Fenrisian life, there are those who hold the power to control these forces of nature.

These chosen few are dubbed the Sons of the Storm and hold the power to send razor sharp shards of ice into their foes, roast them alive inside their own armour with lightning from the heavens or part the earth beneath their feet. These men exist within normal Fenrisian society as shamans and fortune tellers however within the ranks of the Space Wolves they serve the Great Wolf both on the battlefield and when interpreting the runes. The full extent of their powers can only be used with extreme caution and after rigorous training for the power of the warp is fickle and will break an unprepared man without hesitation.

Although a trained rune priest can let loose spectacularly powerful displays of their power with little effort it’s a different matter for those who bear the ‘gift’ and yet are untrained. As a result the gift can only be spotted when one with potential is in extreme and often life threatening circumstances.

Rikulfur was one such man. Inducted into the Space Wolf chapter due to the cold fury he demonstrated in killing a sea dragon after jumping into Fenris’ icy seas armed only with a single harpoon. The dragon should have claimed his life and if not the dragon surly the sea should have done. However, to the astonishment of the crew of his father’s ship and the wolf priest observing the scene from an unseen Thunderhawk the boy Rikulfur emerged from the fearsome waves battered and bloodied, but alive. One who’d been in freezing seas would usually die within the hour yet there was no hint of cold on the boy or any suggestion that he wasn’t completely healthy. To the men of the ship Rikulfur saved, this turn of events was a miracle, to the wolf priest who swooped down to collect him, it was a suspicious event, and he made a mental note to ask the chapter’s Rune Priests to give the boy a particularly thorough examination. However when investigated for the talent the rune priests couldn’t detect the taint in Rikulfur, the only thing they found was a fiercely loyal young lad.....with fury in his heart.

Fury is a predator. It sleeps when its master is comfortable and at peace, only raising its head occasionally to sniff for challenges, but this changes when confronted with those that would harm its master’s kin. Late in Rikulfur’s third campaign his blood claw pack was in dire straits. Surrounded by Orks they fought with reckless abandon slaying mercilessly, but soon enough one of their own fell. Olaf had been Rikulfur’s closest pack mate and his death demanded vengeance.

Unseen in the heat of battle small arcs of lightning jumped from Rikulfur’s pupils to the outer rim of his irises and a chill wind settled around the melee. By the time anyone noticed the icy chill emanating from the blood claw his gauntlets were wreathed in lightening. Kneeling at the side of Olaf’s mangled body amongst the swirling fury of combat Rikulfur returned his chainsword to its scabbard, his pistol to its holster and retrieved the wolf tooth necklace from Olaf’s neck, hanging it around his own. Returning to his feet he ducked a clumsy ‘choppa’ swing from an Ork and let loose his rage.

Shards of ice materialised in this air swirling around the massed bodies shredding Ork flesh whilst blue white lightning cascaded from his fingertips incinerating any foe which survived. All the while his pack mates stood staring at Rikulfur, his eyes now as black as the pits of Morkai’s domain. When the last of the Orks was dying due to the sheer cold of the ice storm Rikulfur collapsed, drained of all energy.

Moments later the storm parted, as the elderly rune priest Ulfstein, strode into view a long rune etched staff crackling in his hand. Briskly shaking Rikulfur awake he growled at him, half angry, half urgent – ‘get up whelp and follow me’. From then on Rikulfur was trained to harness his anger and warp born power by Ulfstein to the point where he could control it and bend it to his will. Along with this he learnt the means by which a skilled seer could read the runes and discern the future.

With his training complete Rikulfur became a dependable member of the Great Wolf’s Rune Priest council proving his wisdom over the centuries and becoming a warrior of horrifying wrath in the face of the Great Wolf’s enemies.
Praise Russ
(oh yeah the hovering skull thing/chooser of the slain is Arni)

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