Exalted: Lost Denizens of the Weeping World
Pale Jackal, Prophet of Conquest
Pale Jackal is a tall, athletic man as suiting someone raised even in a fallen Great House. His skin is pallid and refuses to tan no matter the exposure to sunlight. He favors finely made clothes in creams, golds, greens and blacks. Curiously he seems not to ever carry a weapon on his person but walks with the confidence of a man that does not feel threatened easily.
His white hair tends to be allowed to flow out wildly and freely yet remains in an appealing look for him. He generally and curiously smells of sand though not in an unpleasant manner. Its more just a scent he can’t seem so shake.
Pale Jacakal was once Iselsei Thule. He was an unexalted member of the failed Dynast House, relegated to his own devices in Nexus as a mercenary captain. While he had kept up correspondence with the family, sending what news he heard back, he had turned towards being a sellsword.
Thule was not a combatant himself truly, but he had an almost genius level understanding of strategy in war. His company was built far more on his reputation to lead his men to victory than as a great warrior himself. Stronger, more physically powerful men gathered to the banner of his company he elected to call the Blades of Justice. The company had a reputation for taking cases with lower pay but often better perks due to the relief of those who they helped out.
He led his men through sheer force of personality, relying on their blades to do the fighting for him. More so he was determined to see others helped even for a little turn of profit. The Blades of Justice were generally well received in the Hundred Kingdoms, coming to the aid of weaker nations in times of need. They never earned as much as some Guild group or big company, but the people always kept them well supplied and provisioned in thanks.
This fight for justice and compassion though had irked several companies that Thule had thus far undercut with his low bid contracts and willingness to take barter and supplies for his company. A company of Guild mercenaries, the Harrowers, began making trouble disguised as bandits for the city state of Tilvaro in the Hundred Kingdoms. As usual, Thule took up the contract and rallied his company to go to their aid. What he found was worse than imaginable in a horrific rout.
The Tilvarians refused to grant his company entry to the city for the bandits had warned them not to do so for their own sake. The Harrowers descended upon the Blades of Justice like a flood wave, nearly three times their number. The battle was brutal and many died, but the blades managed to take more with them than just equal numbers. That could not save them from defeat. The company was destroyed to the man, the last and greatest of its warriors fighting to save Thule. All Thule could do was watch in horror as the man was killed trying to protect him.
It was only then he finally recognized the tactics and the weapons of the Harrowers. Their leader, Chakar Grel, came forward and personally beat Thule almost to death. He left him conscious though, making the sneering offer of becoming the strategist for the Harrowers and his personal slave. Thule spit blood in his face defiantly, refusing the offer and earning a trip into the river to likely drown.
It was here that the Peronelles that had been watching Thule for days elected to intervene. It oozed into the waters and clug to Thule like mud, steering him towards the shore. The badly beat man lay on the river bank, feeling like his life had been ruined. All he had wanted to do was help people and make a name for himself, only to have it all stripped away by fucking greed and jealousy. He cursed Tilvaro for their cowardice. He hated everything and everyone at that moment. The moment when the pale mud around him starting to slither off of and from around him to rise up to form eyes and a mouth.
The demon bemoaned the loss, considering the odds against him and how many his men managed to kill. It delivered the final hammer blow to his psyche that broke any possible resistance though. Even after being obeyed, the Harrowers sacked Tilvaro to cover their losses from fighting the Blades of Justice. Thule wanted to just die right there, feeling like he could fall no further in his life. His legacy was a joke and all his soldiers were dead. They had died only for him to face ignoble death here on the river bank.
Unable to stomach failure, unwilling to just die and submit to his humiliation, Thule begged the demon for some means to survive this and turn it around. The Peronelles with great amusement informed him that was why it had saved him. It had an offer but he had to be willing to accept it. It promised him the means to make the world better, the power the avenge his men as well and see their memory uplifted. Thule listened, something in the back of his mind screaming this seemed off. His pride and desire to live got the better of him as he coughed forth blood-soaked acceptance of the deal.
The demon surged towards him then, engulfing him completely until it formed an ovoid shape on the river bank of pale mud. Some passing merchants took the odd thing with them, figuring they could sell it when they made port. In five days as the transformation within completed, Thule pulled himself free of the shell to reveal his frame was now pallid, his hair bleached white and his eyes now a pale blue as if all color had been drained from him. The merchants were stunned but accepted the odd man’s help to pay for his journey to their destination. When they docked, Thule walked away out onto the road until he found a crack in Creation. He crossed into the Endless Desert and began his journey to Malfeas. Iselsei Thule died in that desert during five days of introspection. The man who arrived at the Demon City was Pale Jackal.