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Driven by nightmares, they wander the labyrinths of power, scouring the Three Seas for signs of their ancient and implacable foe — for the Consult. The Holy War is the name of the great host called by Maithanet, the Shriah of the Thousand Temples, to liberate Shimeh from the heathen Fanim of Kian.Word of Maithanet's call spreads across the Three Seas, and faithful from all the great Inrithi nations — Galeoth, Thunyerus, Ce Tydonn, Conriya, High Ainon, and their tributaries — travel to the city of Momemn, the capital of the Nansur Empire, to become Men of the Tusk.Almost from the outset, the gathering host is mired in politics and controversy.
First, to my wife, Sharron, who has literally supported me unto the brink of insolvency.
A Conriyan noble named Nersei Calmemunis comes to an accommodation with the Emperor, and convinces his fellows to sign the Imperial Indenture.
Once provisioned, most of those gathered march, even though their lords and a greater part of the Holy War have yet to arrive.
The minor and major Schools squabble and plot, particularly against the upstart Cishaurim, whose sorcery, the Psûkhe, the Schoolmen cannot distinguish from the God's own world.
And the Thousand Temples pursue earthly ambitions under the leadership of corrupt and ineffectual Shriahs.
Second, Ikurei Xerius III, the Emperor of Nansur, hatches an intricate plot to usurp the Holy War for his own ends.