Kastchei Bes-Mertney

Kastchei ("The Deathless") is Dragon-born, one of the rulers of Skazki, the planet that in times past was better known as Breceliande. Master of the Wild Hunt, and Lord of Summer, he is a remote figure with a mysterious past.

Very few things are certain about his origins, although it has been ascertained that, like Vivienne and Taliesin, he owes his origins to a world outside of Alliance History, perhaps from the universe that the Dragons and Dragon-born came from. Legends suggest that he is somehow linked to Merlin's dragon, and that she brought him to this realm, which suggests that he is also linked to Merlin, although no legends in the Thirteen Worlds mention him by name.

For centuries, as a result of his bond with the dragon, forged whilst he was linked to her, he has been immortal - unable to die or be destroyed, no matter what method was used against him. He has dropped hints that he has travelled extensively, that his name was known and feared on many worlds, and that his deeds were terrible. Again, no legends are known which substantiate this, and the Bardic College believe this information relates more to his life before he was brought to the Thirteen Worlds, although his deeds in Skazki's history have been terrible enough.

In the wars of Sorcery that followed the death of Arthur, he is known to have played a major part, under at least two pseudonyms - Accolon of Galicia, one of Morgaine's many lovers, is one, and Ganelon of Maganza was another. However after the death of the bard Gwion, he seems to have returned to Breceliande just prior to its removal from the Alliance. Thereafter his fortunes seem to have taken a turn for the worse, and he is unheard of until his successful challenge for the Wild Hunt, under the auspices of the Queen of Winter, Alianora Marevna.

His appearance has remained unchanged, at least until comparatively recently: records describe him as a slim but muscular man in his late thirties, with dark auburn hair and a trimmed, but full beard. He is extraordinarily charismatic, intelligent and a gifted sorcerer. The only physical change detected has been in his eyes, from an inhuman green to a more normal grey/blue hue, which some have suggested was the result of the loss of his immortality, given up to save the dragon when she was threatened by Alianora Marevna.

Apart from his sorcery, and his mastery of the subtleties of the Wild Hunt and its attendant cybrid technology, Kastchei is a master hypnotist with uncharted coercive abilities, and a brilliant situational analyst. His dry wit and rather confrontational demeanour however sometimes leads observers to regard him in a less than favourable light.

Some hints dropped in conversation suggest that he knows something of the background of both Vivienne and Taliesin, and that he is rather more familiar with the former than even she is aware.

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"The Birth of Kastchei The Deathless"