Vulkaran the Dark, Master of the Twelve Spheres and self-entitled “Ruler of All Known Space”, was the emperor of the Vodoni Empire in the mid‒14th century DR.[3]

Description[edit | edit source]

Emperor Vulkaran was a maedar. His eyes glowed red when he used some of his powers.[1]

Personality[edit | edit source]

Vulkaran was a megalomaniac, absolutely corrupted by his power and made even more arrogant in light of his extensive military accomplishments. He was a ruthless warrior, who rarely engaged directly in personal combat, except against the leader of an opposing force.[1]

A ruthless and violent leader, Vulkaran considered mercy to be a quality of the weak and believed that the ends always justified the means. He ruled his empire with an iron fist, quickly crushing any signs of resistance and assassinating any potential rivals.[4] He was known for never having fought fairly.[3]

He had no friends and spent much of his time in isolation.[1]

Abilities[edit | edit source]

Besides having all the usual abilities of maedar, Vulkaran also possessed a medusa's eye gaze, which could petrify victims instantly. He kept that ability hidden from others.[1]

Possessions[edit | edit source]

Vulkaran wore mithral plate mail and wielded a defender longsword called Violator, which was particularly damaging against good-aligned opponents. He also owned a variety of magic items, such as a cloak of displacement and a belt of storm giant strength.[1]

The emperor's most precious possession was the Eye of the Gods, a crystal ark similar to a crystal ball and developed to safely carry deities to a different crystal sphere. The entire pantheon of Vodonispace was trapped within the sphere during most of Vulkaran's reign.[5]

History[edit | edit source]

When the sun of Vodonispace exploded, then young emperor Vulkaran organized an evacuation of the sphere's entire population.[6] He used the Eye of the Gods to transport the sphere's pantheon, without the intention of ever releasing them. In fact, Vulkaran intended to supplant them as the sole deity of his people.[5][7][8]

As much of the vodoni technology was lost after the explosion, Vulkaran led a campaign to conquer the spheres around Vodonispace in order to recover his people's resources. This militaristic expanse led the vodoni people to become increasingly militarized over time. When it became once again safe to return to Vodonispace, the vodoni realized that a byproduct of the star's explosion was an immense wealth of gems and precious metals.[9]

The fearsome vodoni army was bred by a group of vodoni breeders under Vulkaran's control, by capturing members of the population and converting them into powerful lycanthropes known as vodoni enforcers.[10][11] With absolute control over his army, Vulkaran became the central figure behind the centuries-long expansion of the Vodoni Empire.[4]

In the mid‒14th century DR, Vulkaran issued a number of expansionist decrees that aimed at annexing the three crystal spheres of Realmspace, Greyspace, and Krynnspace under the Vodoni Empire. He sent scout ships through a previously unknown route through the phlogiston that connected the empire to the targeted spheres.[4][12] The first victims of these scout missions were illithid settlements and spelljammers, which were typically located in the far reaches of wildspace.[13]

The incoming invasion of the three spheres led to the formation of the Free Space Alliance and a massive assault on the Vodoni Empire, in what became known as the War of the Spheres. A covert operation led by the group of adventures who had discovered the invasion plans was tasked with infiltrating the Imperial Palace and assassinating Vulkaran himself,[4] bringing about the end of his reign, the dissolution of the Empire, and the return of the Vodonispace pantheon to their respective Outer Planes.[2]

Appendix[edit | edit source]

Appearances[edit | edit source]

Adventures
Under the Dark Fist

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 Grant S. Boucher (1991). Under the Dark Fist. Edited by Jon Pickens. (TSR, Inc.), p. 55. ISBN 0-56076-131-8.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Grant S. Boucher (1991). Under the Dark Fist. Edited by Jon Pickens. (TSR, Inc.), pp. 49–50. ISBN 0-56076-131-8.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Grant S. Boucher (1991). Under the Dark Fist. Edited by Jon Pickens. (TSR, Inc.), p. 6. ISBN 0-56076-131-8.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Grant S. Boucher (1991). Under the Dark Fist. Edited by Jon Pickens. (TSR, Inc.), p. 3. ISBN 0-56076-131-8.
  5. 5.0 5.1 slade et al (December 1994). Encyclopedia Magica Volume I. (TSR, Inc.), pp. 347–348. ISBN 1560768428.
  6. Grant S. Boucher (1991). Under the Dark Fist. Edited by . (TSR, Inc.), p. 21. ISBN 0-56076-131-8.
  7.  (1991). Under the Dark Fist. Edited by . (TSR, Inc.), p. 27. ISBN 0-56076-131-8.
  8.  (1991). Under the Dark Fist. Edited by . (TSR, Inc.), p. 44. ISBN 0-56076-131-8.
  9.  (1991). Under the Dark Fist. Edited by . (TSR, Inc.), p. 24. ISBN 0-56076-131-8.
  10.  (1991). Under the Dark Fist. Edited by . (TSR, Inc.), p. 28. ISBN 0-56076-131-8.
  11.  (1991). Under the Dark Fist. Edited by . (TSR, Inc.), pp. 61–62. ISBN 0-56076-131-8.
  12.  (1991). Under the Dark Fist. Edited by . (TSR, Inc.), p. 6. ISBN 0-56076-131-8.
  13.  (1991). Under the Dark Fist. Edited by . (TSR, Inc.), pp. 12–13. ISBN 0-56076-131-8.
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