The Keeping of Dragon Hounds Tradition / Ritual in Venya | World Anvil

The Keeping of Dragon Hounds

Written by Yerran

The dwarves of Lenwir are few in number compared to the other races but can trace their lineage back long before the cataclysm (0AC). Though of the great dwarf holds that once dotted the surface of Lenwir only one remains. Khan Zorak is the final ancient dwarf city that remains upon Lenwir, though when the others collapsed around the time of the cataclysm and a great stream of their kind sought shelter within their last city they brought a host of traditions with them, many of which were adopted with the influx of refugees but now have been discarded as old fashioned.  


The forges of Khan Bannun were always to be lit, absorbing magic and churning with industry day and night, though it wasn't just dwarves that walked the halls and managed the fires, but their companions too, fire drakes or 'dragon hounds' as referred to by the dwarves. Everyone born within the keep of Khan Bannun was assigned a dragon hound at birth. To be their guardian, loyal companion and work-mate. For the drake hounds helped work the fires of industry, adding magical fire with their breath and being fire resistant. The partnership was perfect and the drake hounds got as much from it as they gave. Occasionally there were cases of dwarves being killed by their hound, or vice versa. As well as fires starting within dwellings for 'no reason', though these were seen as a small price to pay when it came to the protection, camaraderie, use in industry and battle prowess offered.  

Khan Zorak

When the refugees arrived in the city post cataclysm the Khan Zorak was much smaller than the vast sprawling halls of Khan Bannun and the added space of the hounds became tricky to manage. It also made a lot of other dwarves uncomfortable. Some had fought dragons and other scaled creatures their whole life, as well as scaled demons during the Age of Desolation. With the limited space and lack of forges, fires began to break out at random, with the drakes unable to expel the pent up fire. As well as this, their spawning pools struggled to last with most eggs dying out due to the lack of lava and heat from the forges. As many grew up and died of old age this practise began to die out too until there were few to no drakes left at all in service of the dwarves. This tradition passed into legend and any that sported creature companions were perceived as trying to reclaim the past and old fashioned.

Arm's Race

The addition of drakes to the city of Khan Zorak had a peculiar effect that none foresaw. Dwarves are stubborn and hardy creatures after all, and the fact that their northern cousins had domesticated dragon hounds that even their children played with rubbed the southern dwarves the wrong way. This resulted in them heading out into the forests and mountains about the keep, stealing eggs and juvenile creatures (bears, owlbears, wolves, perytons, etc) and trying to domesticate them. This resulted in attacks and deaths in the keep and was seen by many as an idiotic pursuit. This practise quickly helped many begin to think of the practise of keep dragon hounds and any other beast as an outdated and stupid part of their culture.  

Those That Cling to Tradition

Some that trace their blood back to the city of Khan Bannun try to keep this practise going, though finding the dragon hound eggs and raising it as their own has become extremely difficult with no breeders in the Rednan area and a severe lack of lava. Most have to find their distant kin who have set up small dwarf villages with the purpose of maintaining breeding grounds in the Akreth Lavapools. Though it is no easy feat to reach them and they will not give their eggs to just any dwarf, but only those that prove themselves worthy.

Zhan Bannun

The great dwarf foundry city of Khan Bannun lies far to the north, nestled against The Frigid Peaks. Once it crafted the greatest of weapons, items and golems with the help of the World Engine Temple that rests below the foundry's heart. Now it is abandoned and the land around it forsaken, though many of the old tribe can trace their bloodline back to that city and wish to reclaim and restore it. Fates tell of a lost dwarf prince or princess that will someday regain their honour and revitalise the lost city.
Article cover image use permitted under pixabay CCL.
Credited artists: jcoope12


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