Berrion Bellion Character in Excilior | World Anvil

Berrion Bellion

Exterminator prime

Berrion Rownan Bellion

If we're to have any chance of halting Garde's rise, we'll have to kill Bellion. I have no idea how to kill Bellion.
Donaton Marler, Charian resistance fighter, 1181 AoE
errion Bellion was the leader of the Exterminators and the highest Charian military commander during the first five years of the Nomadic Wars. Along with nearly all of his men, he was killed in a surprise attack by the Dawn Reaver mere hours after the signing of Bellion's Treaty in 1207 AoE.

Physical Description

General Physical Condition

ellion was legendary for his physical prowess. While there is little doubt that he was truly skilled in boot-to-boot combat, his advantage was exacerbated by the fact that he was almost always bigger than anyone else on the battlefield. It wasn't just that he was tall (although he certainly was tall). He also boasted a physique replete with bulging muscles. This seemed to be his natural, "given" state, because when he wasn't in combat he spent most of his time drinking to excess, eating gluttonously, and generally rejecting any activity that would normally be associated with physical fitness.

Physical quirks

ellion was either ambidextrous, or he had gone to great lengths to ensure that he could wield his axe (and, at times, his chain) with equal proficiency in either hand. On the verge of battle, his charges reported that his right hand (the one that typically wielded his chain) would shake almost uncontrollably. But this was not characterized as fear or nervousness. They perceived it as the manifestation of his driving desire to charge into combat. Toward the last years of his life, some kind of glancing blow seems to have left him with a chronic nasal condition, which caused him to frequently spit - even when participating in formal, society activities.

Apparel & Accessories

lthough his battlefield presence was menacing on an otherworldly level, when he wasn't girding for combat he was often seen as something of a dandy. By the time that he was installed as the top commander in the Exterminators - a specialized military brigade of his own creation - he had acquired an extensive array of formal garments that he enjoyed donning whenever the occasion allowed. In fact, he was particularly fond of an ostentatious, flowing cape, decked out in the orange-and-silver hues of Charia's scutcheon. Scraps of surviving graffiti from his troops indicate that this made him the subject of some ridicule amongst his own men - but most cognoscenti surmise that such outright insults were never spoken to his face.
He also had a bit of a fetish about his longboots. He kept a cobbler with him at all times. Another servant - usually some green recruit with no training (and no self-respect) - accompanied him on all his travels. That page had the responsibility to personally carry his spare longboots, to fastidiously oil them every night to keep them soft and supple, and to clean them constantly.

Specialized Equipment

is intimidating stature was further accentuated by his equipment and weaponry in battle. He famously wielded a massive, two-handed battle axe with a razor-sharp ebny blade. But due to his excessive physical gifts, he wielded that axe, effortlessly, in a single hand. Eye witness accounts claim that, when he used a full stroke to drive the weapon down upon his enemies, an audible whoosh and an accompanying rush of air could be detected in the immediate vicinity. He had a well-known reputation for hewing entire limbs from his fully-armored opponents with a single blow of his axe.
The battle was leaning strongly in our favor. And at one point, I thought I could see their lines starting to cave. But then Bellion charged in, and we had no choice but to retreat.
Jorn Jentsen, Atrian mercenary, 1183 AoE
If he was expecting to fight in close quarters, he carried a sizable chain in his other hand. But this was a chain like none other. Each link was couched in iron barbs. He launched it almost as a metallic whip. Aside from its capacity to immediately shred skin, those barbs often became snagged upon the armor, clothing, or bones of his enemies. He then yanked them closer with a single motion of his powerful arm, and before they could even regain their footing, the battle axe in his other hand decapitated them.
He carried no shield, but he was far from exposed. Long before the Nomadic Wars, he commissioned an exquisite suit of bloodwood armor carefully carved and crafted to sit perfectly on his giant frame. Several anecdotes describe the sad scene when an enemy, in the heat of battle and somehow lucky enough to land a blow upon him, watched in horror as his own blade snapped against the titan's protective coating.

Mental characteristics

Personal history

ellion's early life was heavily influenced by his ongoing association with Garde Montagu, who eventually became the first King of Charia. The Montagus and Bellions were arbyrkin in the Bouzian capital of Bavers. Bellion liked to believed that his association with the future king was purely the result of his own character. But the simple fact is that Montagu already knew the Bellion line quite well and he was friends with Berrion's father. Without these political ties, it's doubtful that Bellion would have ever received much attention from Montagu.
While Montagu was quietly assembling a power base, with the eventual goal of establishing a brand new kingdom in the unincorporated lands south of Bouzia, he found that the young Bellion was a valuable tool as a vicious, loyal, and discrete enforcer. Deploying Bellion against his enemies allowed Montagu to maintain a veneer as an above-board aristocrat. Although the founding of Charia was not a military coup in any sense of the word, there were certainly others who wanted to stop Montagu's ambitions by force. When this happened, Bellion assembled his own crew of conscripts and thugs, and he took the fight directly to the rebels. Some of these engagements consisted of nothing more than Bellion and a handful of his men wiping out a small group of usurpers. But several of these conflicts certainly rose to the level of battles, with each side being hundreds-strong. When such clashes occurred, Bellion truly became a rising star, with tales spreading far and wide about the vicious and unstoppable behemoth that Montagu had leading his troops.
I believe our adolescent nation can survive the laughable ineffectiveness of Helinand. But I'm not sure if we can weather the whirling demon that sits at the head of the Exterminators.
Bardrick Bartran, Charian cognoscenti, 1201 AoE
When King Garde died tragically of pypyrus, the incoming ruler - King Helinand - cleaved closely to Montagu's imposing warden. Some cognoscenti debate whether King Helinand liked Bellion and truly wanted him as a military commander - or whether he was simply afraid of Bellion and found it more expedient to bring Berrion into the fold, rather than alienate him and risk his wrath. In either case, Bellion's role in Helinand's court was more official and more above-board. Helinand effectively lifted Bellion to the status of officer, as opposed to his role in Montagu's court as a quasi-secret sergeant-at-arms.
Helinand was a weak monarch - and he knew it. Rather than fix the problems in his own leadership, he chose to spin up a new war - against a population that most people didn't even view as an enemy. The not-to-subtle intention of this conflict was for the plebeians to unite against a (supposedly-evil) other and shift their focus away from Helinand's shortcomings. When Helinand needed a Charian field marshal to lead his forces in the Nomadic Wars, he could think of no better candidate than Bellion.
Fueled by a stream of borrowed funds and the continual xenophobic rants of Helinand, Bellion wasn't content to simply enlist an army. He created, what he believed would be, an elite force of "Noctern hunters" and he named this group of shock troops the Exterminators. Unfortunately (for the oplanders), the Exterminators spent almost all of their time chasing ghosts and rumors of Nocterns, and almost none of their time engaging with the enemy. During those times when Noctern-oplander battles did take place, the results were usually swift and one-sided. The Dawn Reaver's guerrilla force would strike some ill-defended Exterminator patrol - and then disappear. Or the Dawn Reaver would lure Bellion's forces into all manner of inferior tactical positions, at which point the Nocterns would strike, causing lopsided Exterminator casualties.
After five years of infuriating cat-and-mouse tactics, King Helinand had finally had enough. He instructed Bellion to negotiate a peace treaty. But even with the signed treaty in hand, Bellion proved that he was not done underestimating the resolve of the Dawn Reaver. Bellion launched an ostentatious party for his massive force of 2,300 men. The next morning, they were to march to the capital. From there, most of them would presumably disband, and the Nomadic Wars would be, in the short-term at least, over.
He was a titan. And I understand why he was a legend to your people. But having been there that night, I can confirm that his skull was just as soft as all the other troops'.
Lars Razis, Noctern ranger, 1232 AoE
Bellion never considered that maybe the Noctern forces could be so bold as to attack after the peace treaty was signed. Once the signing was complete, he basically abandoned all standard military protocol for encamped forces. He posted no guards. He deployed no scouts. He did nothing to ensure that there was at least a small contingent of sober troops in his camp. It would be Bellion's last mistake.   The Dawn Reaver, and the full-force of his assembled troops, struck the camp a little before midnight. In the inebriated confusion that ensued, the Charians and their boastfully-named Exterminators lost nearly every soldier. It was a humiliating and devastating defeat for the oplanders but the fallout from that "battle" would be of no concern to Bellion. He was slain that night, along with the rest of his men.

Accomplishments & Achievements

ellion's greatest accomplishments came when he leveraged his imposing physical gifts in direct boot-to-boot combat. Although time has muddied his record, and some of his battlefield successes are littered with legends and myths, cognoscenti who research this time period have no doubt that Bellion was one of the most formidable opponents of his day. By some accounts, he is at least partially responsible for the rise of King Garde and the establishment of the entire Charian nation. For during the kingdom's formative years, Bellion was the primary watchdog and enforcer, dispatched repeatedly by King Garde to quell whatever nascent rebellions may be fomenting in the countryside.

Failures & Embarrassments

ellion will always be tied to the Dawn Reaver's surprise attack in 1207 AoE. In this single assault, the Charians lost almost their entire army, Bellion lost his life, and the Exterminators ceased to exist. While the popular narrative throughout many oplander cultures is that Bellion was the unfortunate victim of unconscionable Noctern treachery, those who study history with a more balanced eye have found plenty of blame for Bellion.
Even by the most forgiving Charian accounts, Bellion acted rudely and made numerous insulting remarks during the signing of the peace treaty. Throughout the five-year history of the Exterminators, his men continually underestimated the Nocterns and Bellion himself often spoke of his opponents as though they were annoying pests to be rounded up - and exterminated. After the signing of the treaty, he apparently dropped all military acumen. Believing the war to be over, he simply made no attempt whatsoever to protect his camp and he set up his own men for slaughter by ensuring that nearly everyone was spectacularly drunk. It's quite likely that he didn't even consider the Nocterns capable of ambushing an army as large as his. The cost of all these failures was Bellion's life and the annihilation of his vaunted Exterminators.

Personality Characteristics


ellion was initially motivated to establish his own legacy, free from his elitist family. He specifically wanted to use his physical dominance as a way of demonstrating - to the entire world - that he was always a more worthy heir than any of his older brothers. Once he established himself as a military force, and graduated to a level where he was no longer just fighting in wars, but leading others in military campaigns, his continued need for social acceptance drove him to grasp at all the accoutrements that he envisioned as being part of life as an aristocratic general. Ultimately, he desired to be lauded throughout "polite" society as a great military mind and a protector of the nation.

Savvies & Ineptitudes

he great dichotomy of Bellion is that he was one of the fiercest and most effective warriors in the annals of Lumidari history. Had he remained "just" a soldier, he would probably be remembered in the pantheon of legendary champions who are dreaded by their enemies and adored by their own people.
But Bellion certainly wasn't "just" a soldier. During the latter stages of King Garde's life, and for the first five years of the Nomadic Wars, he was a full-fledged military commander. He was the marshal of all King Helinand's forces and he was solely responsible for the tactical and strategic decisions that drove Charia's wartime fate in those early years. He personally founded the Exterminators. He decided where to hunt for the Nocterns and, in those rare cases when he actually found them, he controlled every aspect of his army's plan of engagement. With all this in mind, cognoscenti historians are nearly unanimous in their assessment that Bellion failed at military leadership - in spectacular fashion.
The Dawn Reaver has effectively turned Bellion's military campaign into a ragtag scavenger hunt.
Elisza Hauberger, Thignian noble, 1203 AoE
It's not that Bellion was ignorant of military strategy. He understood battlefield tactics. He excelled at leading troops. He even tended to the more mundane (but critical) details, such as supply-chain management and force readiness. But Bellion's model of warfare was one of regimented brigades and open-field combat. Even when it became clear that the Nocterns and their pragmatic praetor, the Dawn Reaver, would never allow themselves to be pulled into such a battle, he continued to chase them around the Charian countryside, convinced that, sooner or later, he would be able to lure them into the grand showdown that he so desperately desired.
The rigidity of Bellion's tactics was made worse by the fact that he repeatedly underestimated his enemy. He spoke openly of the Nocterns as vermin (which is why he chose to call his "elite" force the Exterminators). He refused to acknowledge, on any level, that the Dawn Reaver's troops represented any real threat to Charian military objectives. He wouldn't even openly admit that the Nocterns were truly human. This blatant disrespect didn't just color his own command decisions. It also left his troops poorly prepared because they bought into Bellion's tales about the Nocterns being nothing more than a cadre of weak subhumans.


Family Ties

ellion came from one of the more-influential arbyrs in the Bouzian capital city of Bavers. Although they could not plausibly claim membership in the Bouzian "ruling class", his family was quite wealthy and he wanted for nothing. Years later, once he became known for his military campaigns, this fact became apparent in his famous suit of bloodwood armor. At a time when most conscripts made due by scavenging the possessions of their defeated foes, Bellion commissioned one of the finer (and most effective) suits of armor that anyone at that time had ever seen. No one else in his brigade could have possibly afforded such gear.
His comfortable upbringing was not always a comfort to him in adulthood. As he stamped his name upon the military engagements of the time, he longed to be viewed - nay, accepted - by his colleagues as a gritty warrior who earned everything that came to him through sheer force of will and superior skill in combat. References to his lineage, and the resources of his arbyrkin, often sparked fights. He's believed to have killed at least two of his fellow soldiers, during separate incidents years apart, when those soldiers teased him too earnestly about those things which had been "handed to him" in life. Ironically, in both situations, it was those same connections to his influential arbyrkin that ultimately kept him from being disciplined in any way.
While he may have had helpful backing from his father and other influential family members, his overall relationship with most of his family was contentious. He was the eighth of nine children, and the last of seven boys born to his mother. He may have been the youngest of the boys, but it was clear from a very early age that he received far greater physical gifts than any of his brothers. Nevertheless, being the youngest, his older brothers tortured him repeatedly as a child and they received all of the choicest rewards of their arbyr. There's little doubt that he found this situation to be patently unfair and he spoke of his brothers with disdain and contempt for the rest of his life.

Social Aptitude

ellion was known for three distinct, yet complimentary, modes of behavior. In his younger years, when he was still trying to establish his position in society, he displayed near-slavish loyalty and devotion to his immediate superiors, and to the acknowledged rulers of his region. He never questioned their orders. He was trusted as a devout servant and, as such, found himself in the trusted inner circles of powerful arbyrs. For all of the brashness he displayed later in life, his formative years were often spent quietly awaiting the instruction of his lords. And when he was given a clear task to accomplish, nothing swayed him from its completion.
He saw himself as a military genius, a national hero, a savior to the people, a friend to his troops, and a cultured scion of society. The truth was far simpler. He was just the biggest, baddest man in the room.
Lautin Minzler, Charian chamberlain, 1208 AoE
Of course, warfare was one of his most impressive skills. Given his daunting physical stature, it wasn't long before he found himself leading men into combat. When this occurred, he positively transformed. He was no longer the calculating political climber who wanted to say and do all the "right" things. On the battlefield, he was an angel of death. Just standing next to him, as he mercilessly cut down one enemy after another, instilled heroic bravery in his fellow soldiers. He was never out of control, and he had no love of suicide charges, but he fought with a raw tenacity that few warriors have ever matched. His brutal efficiency in dispatching others, coupled with his aforementioned loyalty, made him a favorite "weapon" of the powerful arbyrs that held sway in Bouzia and the fledgling Charian nation.
Once he fully established his reputation and rose through the ranks, a bolder, cockier, brasher side of his personality came to the fore. He was still fanatically devoted to his king and the king's allies. But with rank and prestige, he had the freedom to drop his social guard and indulge his baser instincts. He never lost his physical acumen, and he was a dreaded maelstrom in combat until his final day, but his skyrocketing self-confidence became the dominant force in his personality for the duration of his time in the Nomadic Wars. He drank like there was no tomorrow - aided, no doubt, by his hefty frame and epic tolerance. His men saw him as jovial and "one of them". They cracked bawdy jokes. He accompanied them to inns where they lustily pursued dalliances of every stripe. He was, quite literally, a living legend - and he relished the status.
BAIR-ee-uhn BELL-ee-uhn
1160 PE 1207 PE 47 years old
Circumstances of Death
Killed in a surprise attack during a huge party that he threw for his men to celebrate the (supposed) end to the Nomadic Wars.
Sparkling pink eyes ringed with dark brown
Golden, flowing hair, interspersed with natural black streaks, hangs over a handsome, wild face
Skin Tone/Pigmentation
Caucasian, with the permanent hue of deep tanning
Aligned Organization
Known Languages


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Jul 21, 2019 16:07

Another brilliant article, great work! You do a great job of giving the idea of a truly terrifying individual while still keeping it light-hearted and fun. The article isn't wordy, and is broken up well by quotes, headers, and those characteristic single word boxes I've seen in your articles.   It may be a good idea to write a paragraph about his death in more detail, I'm itching to know how they managed to bring him down. How many people were in the ambush? What weapons did they use? Last words?   Happy camping! Hotdog

Jul 21, 2019 17:49 by Adam Nathaniel Davis

As always, thanks for the feedback! And BTW, it was your feedback that originally inspired me to use those little right-aligned word boxes. I crank out a lot of words and I wanted some additional way to break up the text without having to turn every article into Web-Based UI/UX Design 101 complete with dozens of graphics and other visual detritus. The word boxes seemed to help with that.   As for Bellion's death, I totally agree that there's some opportunity for cool detail there. But I'm holding back a little bit, just because A) the Nocterns are tremendously secretive and even the "narrator" of this article probably doesn't have ALL of those details, and B) eventually I'll have more "traditional" fiction in here - especially, short stories, or what I call "vignettes". The actual raid that took down Bellion and wiped out the Exterminators would be an excellent candidate for just such a vignette. I've only done one of them so far - it's under the Tales of Excilior category in the Table of Contents. That's where I will be getting aware from pure worldbuilding, and creating more content that qualifies as traditional storytelling.

Jul 22, 2019 08:41

No problem for the feedback! I hope to see more of your articles now that I have time to slow down a bit with SummerCamp (one left to go). It's really humbling to hear that I inspired you for the boxes. I'm gonna go look at some more of your articles now. Happy camping! Hotdog

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