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- This book is an excerpt from the book Redguards, Their History and Their Heroes.
Torn's Sword Hunt had separated the Singers from the common people, and the rise of the Last Emperor began the last great strife of the desert empire: the Emperor and his consort Elisa's final effort to wrest control of the empire from the people by destroying the sword-singers. Hira vowed to search out every Singer with his Brigand army composed of Orcs and castoffs of the wars of the empire, and to scourge them from the face of the planet.
The sword-singers were never a numerous people. The harsh desert kept the births few, and growing up in the unforgiving wastes eliminated all but those of iron spirit and will. Thus the final strife, which became known as the "War of the Singers," found the people of the sword unprepared and unready to join together their individually great skills into an army that could defend their homes and lives.
Frandar Hunding was sought out, his death poem interrupted, and unceremoniously command of the singers was thrust upon him. To the unknown gods of war great thanks is owed that Hunding had the time in his cave to write down his years of accumulated wisdom, of strategy, of the way of the Shehai. The singers fled from their camps up into the desert hills and mountains, fled to the foot of Hattu, "the Father of Mountains," where Hunding had gone to write in peace and to die. There those remnants formed into the Army of the Circle—they learned Hunding's Way, his strategies, his tactics, and the final great vision for a master stroke.
Hunding devised a plan of seven battles, leading the Armies of Hira further and further into the wilderness to the foot of Hattu, where the final battle could be fought. Hunding called his plan the "Hammer and the Anvil." With each battle Hunding's Singers would further learn his strategies and tactics, grow strong in the use of the Shehai, and be ready to defeat their opponents in the seventh battle. And thus it was, the six first battles were waged, each neither victory or defeat, each leading to the next. The larger armies of Hira following the small army of Hunding. Outnumbered thirty to one, the singers never faltered from the Way. The stage was set: Hira and his army maneuvered to the base of Hattu Mountain, where the hammer blow was delivered. The battle was pitched, and many singers fell that day. Hunding knew that the singers who lived would be few, but Hira and his empire of evil would not live—and so it went.
At the end Hunding and less that twenty thousand singers survived the day, but no army of evil was left to pillage and murder—more than three hundred thousand fell that day on Hattu. Of those who were left to run and live, all were scattered to the four winds, an organized force no more.
The singers packed their lives, folded their tents, mourned their dead, and followed Hunding to the great port city of Arch, in the province of Seawind. There Hunding had a flotilla of ships waiting. The singers left their desert for a new land. No longer welcome in the desert empire, they left to be sung about and spoken of in legend. The final great warrior, the singers of Shehai, the Book of Circles, all leaving that land where their virtue was unappreciated. Red, red with blood they were in the eyes of the gentle citizenry, never mind that they had saved them from a great evil.
The singers vowed to learn new ways as they traveled across the great ocean to their new land. To adopt a new name, but to honor the past. In honor of their final battle, they named their new land Hammerfell and adopted the name Redguards.
In honor to Hunding the great warrior prince, each household in Hammerfell has a place by the hearth, an alcove really, just a niche, big enough to hold the scroll: The Book of Circles.
|Redguards, History and Heroes|
|Redguards, History and Heroes, V. 2||Redguards, History and Heroes, V. 3|