Deity Profile: Zalkar the Unyielding

Patron of the Demonhunter Order and law enforcement the world over, Zalkar has a storied history that remains one of the greatest legends of the people of Citaria.  An imposing human who stands over six feet tall with a military crew cut and icy blue eyes, Zalkar has a reputation as a humorless taskmaster and fierce soldier.  The latter portion is true, but despite the zeal with which he pursues his goals through the justice system and the Demonhunter Order, Zalkar exemplifies the ideals behind his church’s single greatest tenet: Love Justice, but Do Mercy.

Born Jacob Zalkarov, he grew up among a family that was part military, part clergy, and accordingly, he ended up in a position where both of those came into play: chaplain of the Sutherland Battalions.  While he also served as a commissioned officer, Zalkar was the most devout of his fellow soldiers, and was depended upon to pray for and bless his brothers.  Zalkar was well-known not only for his strict discipline and strong faith, but for his love of his countrymen and willingness to stand in the front lines, wearing his faith on his sleeve.  Though never officially a priest of any specific church, Zalkar was beloved by the pantheon, and considered a disciple of Gori Sensullu himself.

It was during routine training maneuvers that Zalkar’s legend began.  His battalion was practicing combat tactics on the plains southwest of Gnarr when they were ambushed by a squad of brys laying in wait.  Though they took losses, they were able to put the brys to rout, but found they were simply led into a greater ambush.  Nearly the entire battalion was lost; only Zalkar and a handful of others escaped, falling back to the forests around Gnarr where the serilian demons were unlikely to follow.  After returning home to Gnarr and being debriefed, Zalkar resigned his commission to the Duke’s military and began one of his own, one that would lead to the creation of the Demonhunter Order.

The ex-soldier studied under the then-tiny order of paladins known as Avengers, learning their tactics for fighting the serilian demons, as well as how best to use his faith as a shield.  At the same time, he spent days in the temple of Sechre Tori, and from the war god’s priests, Zalkar learned to bless his weapons, calling upon the fervor of the god of righteous battle to inflict terrible wounds beyond the basic damage his weapons normally would.  He further spent time with the night watchmen of Garra Ktarra, learning to be fearless even when confronting the enemy in their element: the darkness.  And once this training was complete, he lived among the ranger network of the Sandur Jungle, from whom he learned various methods of tracking and harrying his serilian demon foes.

Armed with this knowledge, Zalkar became the first true demonhunter of Citaria.  Other soldiers – particularly other survivors from his ambushed battalion – came to serve and learn from Zalkar, and over time, they became a close-knit group.  They eventually began to call themselves “demonhunters,” and established a home base in the city of DarkWind, from which they were able to send members to wherever trouble arose.  Over time, they began training others in their ways, and established a campus in DarkWind that would later come to house Zalkar’s own temple, once he was deified.

Zalkar’s glories were many, and he left behind the greatest law enforcement agency upon Citaria: the Demonhunter Order.  Though their primary focus was combating serilian demons, they were also tasked with assisting law enforcement wherever they went.  When Zalkar’s life at last came to an end, he was fittingly offered a position as the god of law and the patron of demonhunters, a position he readily accepted to continue his work.  He is now served by law enforcement, those who work in the justice system, by many members of the military, and of course by the Demonhunter Order.

Zalkar’s closest friends among the pantheon are Kris Fletcher and Sechre Tori, and though their ideals and methods don’t always align, he has a strong relationship with Garra Ktarra, having trained under the Night Runner’s priests.

Next up: Kris Fletcher, whom I forgot.

Until then,

Shoeless

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