Ways of the Seven
“…And so it was that Marduk the Great did slay the ravager Tiamat, with mighty hand he smote the great beast’s five heads asunder and did bathe Kelmar in her boiling blood…”
-The Epic of Marduk, trans. E’oldhon Tallond
Kord is the Chaotic Good god of strength, combat, and storms. He is revered by gladiators, athletes, soldiers (especially soldiers of fortune), and those wishing to control or divine the weather. He is also associated with the ancient magic of runes, and runepriests of all races, especially dwarves, call upon him to perfect their craft.
Kord appears as a towering, musclebound human man with long red hair and a glorious beard. He comports himself in a simple white toga, and is never without his enchanted runesword, Kelmar.
The oldest written literature known to the archeologists of the Valuan Empire is a series of clay tablets found in the province of Arlienna that record The Epic of Marduk, a legend that dates from the Age of Dragons that predates even the city-states of Avandras and Eratir. It says that long ago, before the Valuan Empire and the age of men, evil dragons ruled the land and laid waste to all who opposed them in the name of the greatest of their foul kind, Tiamat, the Chromatic Dragon and tyrannous lord of chromatic dragonkind. After a long and successful career slaying her monstrous brood, a mortal hero named Marduk rose to challenge Tiamat in combat when she killed Marduk’s companion Gardon. Puffed up with pride, Tiamat faced Marduk alone, confident that no mortal could best her. Marduk marshaled the seven winds and called forth thunder and lightning, and the battle raged for a year and a day. Though Marduk’s enchanted runesword of dragonslaying, Kelmar, bit again and again at the flesh of the colossal dragon, her vitality seemed endless. Each of her five heads belched forth great gouts of raw elemental energy, devastating the land and slaying anyone who dared approach the battlefield. Finally, with both combatants on the edge of death, Marduk severed each of Tiamat’s horrible heads and plunged Kelmar into her still-beating heart. The great dragon’s corpse, no longer able to contain the roiling elemental fury within, exploded in a towering blast that lit up the night sky like a thousand suns. The ocean flooded the enormous crater left behind, creating what is now named the Kordic Sea.
Awakening in the afterlife, Marduk knew that his battle against Tiamat had only just begun. Empowered by his epic deeds in life, he clothed himself in otherworldly flesh and searched the cosmos for his eternal foe, while word of his great victory spread on the Prime. Soon his name was called upon in times of need, and as the power of mortal worshipers flowed into him, Marduk ascended to godhood. Taking on the name of Kord, the ancient rune of Strength, he pledged to lead his followers as they quested for their own glory.
Kord left behind no teachings beyond his own heroic example. His priests believe that by aspiring to each of Kord’s heroic virtues, one can go down in legend and live forever, as he does:
Strength of body and strength of conviction will see you through the greatest of tests. Challenge your body and your mind to grow ever stronger and face ever greater threats.
Scorn cowardice and let your blade never waver from fear. Your bravery will inspire greatness in yourself and in others.
No task is too great to accomplish. If something cannot yet be done, train and grow strong to overcome it.
In addition, his church has codified Kord’s Seven Heroic Virtues:
In 3.5 DnD, Kord’s domains are Chaos, Good, Strength, and Rune.