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Baruk (or Barukanal) was a High Alchemist and leader of the T'orrud Cabal[1] in Darujhistan. The Cabal was an organization of nine mages who were the true rulers of the city. Making his home within the city's Estate district,[2] he considered it his duty to assure the city's survival and independence from the Malazan Empire.

Baruk employed many men, women, and familiars in a spy network. Amongst his long standing agents were Kruppe, Murillio, Rallick Nom and Coll.[3] Baruk also made use of the familiars Irp and Rudd and the demon Chillbais.[4][5] His human servant was Roald.[6]

He was described as bulky with plump hands, but still able to move with alacrity despite his girth.[7] Lady Simtal described him as a 'fat old man smelling of sulphur and brimstone'.[8]

Baruk was in the habit of working at night and because of that normally did not drink after sunset.[9] He despised chance operating in his affairs.[10]

In Gardens of the MoonEdit

For a year, Baruk had been the recipient of messages from Circle Breaker about secret meetings held by councilman Turban Orr at Despot's Barbican. The spy's reports were sent to him on behalf of the mysterious Eel whose true identity Baruk was unaware of.[6]

In the wake of the Malazan victory over the nearby city of Pale, Orr tried to push a proclamation of Darujhistan's neutrality towards the Malazan Empire through the council. Two days before the vote, he visited Baruk to persuade the alchemist to give his support to the motion. Baruk declined to back Orr and the councilman told him that the proclamation would nevertheless go ahead as a majority support had been reached just that night.[11]

Anomander Rake, aware that Baruk and his fellow Cabal members were the true powers in Darujhistan, contacted the mage through Crone to form an alliance.[12] Upon hearing of two traitorous Pale wizards hiding in the city, he demanded their heads. The alternative being killed by Dragnipur, Baruk promised Rake he would have them.[13]

Kruppe came to Baruk with information about the ongoing assassin war and the situation amongst the thieves. He also told Baruk about Oponn's coin and was charged to protect the coinbearer, however, if it should transpire that the Lord rather than the Lady claimed the coinbearer, Baruk ordered Kruppe to engage Rallick (i.e. to have the coinbearer killed).[14]

When Rake commented that Baruk was addressing him as equal, Baruk replied that there were many paths to Ascendancy implying that he himself might be an Ascendant or on the path to it.[15]

Spoiler warning: The following section contains significant plot details about Baruk.

In Deadhouse GatesEdit

Baruk and the T'orrud Cabal helped sponsor an expedition of the Trygalle Trade Guild along with Dujek Onearm to provide Fist Coltaine and his Chain of Dogs with food and water after their crossing of the Nenoth Odhan. Additionally, Coltaine was presented with a bottle of smoky glass on a chain which he was instructed to wear at all times.[16]

After Coltaine and his army were massacred and crucified by Korbolo Dom's army of the Apocalypse, Baruk sent his familiars Rudd and Irp to collect the Fist's body. Rudd was able to find the corpse because Baruk had linked the familiar to the ensorcelled bottle. Unfortunately for the Malazan Empire, the bottle which had been designed to save Coltaine's soul had been given away by the Fist to Duiker. So it was ultimately the Imperial Historian's body and soul recovered by Baruk's agents.[17][18]

Significant plot details end here.

In Toll the Hounds Edit

Crone met with Baruk as envoy for Anomander Rake and brought him a text by Dillat as a gift from her master for the Alchemist's collection.[19] The two discussed the potential for an event happening and Rake's offer of help should it be needed. Chillbais who, for several months, had been watching the Azath House in Darujhistan for Baruk,[20] appeared towards the end of their meeting with news of a change there. Baruk then told Crone that 'it (the event)' had begun.[21]

In Orb Sceptre Throne Edit

Baruk tried to protect himself from being forcefully summoned by the Legate (the last Darujhistani Tyrant), however he failed. He was forcefully dragged away from his estate and transformed into a clawed creature, now called Barukanal, who was under the control of the Tyrant, a constant punishment for the mage.[22]

He was forced to serve as a servant of the Tyrant, and approached Caladan Brood outside Darujhistan warning him to keep away from the Tyrant's activities in Genabackis. Unfazed, Caladan Brood in turn, threatened to destroy the entire city should the Tyrant become too brazen. Baruk then left without having accomplished anything.[23]

Baruk with Hinter, Aman and Taya attacked the residents of K'rul's Bar. Whilst attacking, he was at the same time trying to avoid hurting them as much as his controlled mind would allow. K'rul appeared and ended the fight. Baruk tried to convey a hint about how to attack the Tyrant before also being told to leave by K'rul.[24]

Baruk interrupted Rallick Nom's attempt to assassinate the Tyrant. Pretending he did not know Nom's purpose, Baruk instead made another attempt to give a message on how to thwart the Tyrant.[25]

Baruk slashed Barathol Mekhar's wrist so that some of the forger's blood would strengthen the circle he was making for the Tyrant. Baruk told him to be grateful given that had Aman been in his place he would have slashed Barathol's throat instead.[26]

After the fall of the Tyrant, a battered Baruk returned to his estate where he was greeted by Chillbais.[27]

Other Edit

He was the creator of an antidote to the deadly white paralt poison used by assassins. He also created the pendant originally meant for Coltaine but given to Duiker which allowed him to resurrect the historian after he was crucified on Aren Way.

Baruk used a simple cantrip to make a note disappear which then joined others in a safe place.[9]

Notes and referencesEdit

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