Nagash: The Undying King (novel)
|Cover Artist||Paul Dainton|
Since the dark days of the Great Awakening, the scattered remnants of humanity have clung to a bleak existence, surviving howsoever they can, no matter what the cost. Tamra, a voivode of the Rictus clans, fights one last, desperate battle for the survival of her tribe, the Drak. Now her people face their most relentless enemy ever – the lumbering minions of the Plague God. Where is their lord Nagash, the Undying King, when his people need him most? As the gods and their servants vie for power in the Mortal Realms, Tamra is drawn into a deadly game between life and death, as beings long thought gone start to exert their powers once again.
|This page contains spoilers for:||Nagash: The Undying King (novel)|
Following the defeat of Nagash by Archaon his realm is increasingly beset by the forces of Chaos, and whilst the Mortarchs still lead the defence in his absence, they seem to be fighting a losing battle.
The story begins in the far north of the Realm of Shyish where the Drak, oldest of the highclans of the Rictus Clans struggle to survive an onslaught by Rotbringers and Daemons of Nurgle. Tamra ven-Drak, their voivode, leads the dead in a last defence to allow the few remaing living to escape but her forces are crushed by those of the sorcerer Tulg, a member of the Order of the Fly. At the last moment however, she is saved by Neferata, Mortarch of blood and her Blood Knights led by Lady Adhema who bade her retreat with her people to the Mandible a great redoubt on the shores of the Rictus Sea and former home of her clan.
Nagash meanwhile awakes, struggling to maintain coherency of form and mind and aware that his realm is being ravaged by the forces of Chaos. He watches the fall of helstone, feels his control over such mighty beasts as Crypslough the zombie dragon, first and greatest of its kind escapes his control. Finally he notices Arkhan his Mortarch of Sacrament attempting to gain his attention and assistance to save the Rictus clans.
Whilst they awaited the enemy, Neferata took Tamra to the high crags to seek out the Prince of Crows, an Abhorrant Ghoul King who she knew of old. The Mortarch revealed the cave drawings that spoke of the ambitions of High-King Tarun and his five cousins – the Broken Kings who had stood against Nagash and lost.
Blightmaster Ocander Wolgus of the Order of the Fly continues his crusade, accompanied by many daemons led by Dolorous Gurm a Herald of Nurgle and a patron of the order. The are resisted mostly by the dead, but little seems to be able to stand before them and they hope to extend the great garden of their deity as they advance upon the last stronghold of the clans. As they advance they cast down the monoliths of the god of the dead, fighting off attacks by Bone Giants and undead wolves. Occasionally Nagash is lucid enough to focus on them and sends new forces such as animated ogor tribes.
Eventually the legions of Nurgle arrive and despite the presence of two mortarch’s and the resistance of the living and the dead, the fortress is overwhelmed. In desperation to save the remnants of her people, Tamra releases the Broken Kings and their followers, a breach of the Law of Nagash. Shortly after, Nagash himself joins the conflict and he and the dead destroy both the Rotbringers and the Daemon horde.
Then Nagash stands in judgment of Tamra and despite the pleas of both Neferata and Arkhan, pronounces her guilty. She and all those of her clan that still lived are slain and brought back to serve him in death. He proclaims her a Deathlord and gives her dominion over her people as High-queen.