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Gruntle1

Interpretation of Gruntle while he was still a caravan guard by Toraneko

Gruntle was the captain of a group of caravan guards for hire, which included Stonny Menackis and Harllo. He had been in the trade for over twenty years, earning respect among his peers as well as a high rate for his services.[2] Unlike most in his profession, he had received a formal education some time in his past, which gave him what he called a healthy scepticism.[3] He had a weathered, roughly chiseled face that had lived hard years, although there were well-worn laugh lines around his eyes.[4]

Gruntle despised the military and its discipline. He also disliked titles, only calling himself captain in order to charge more for his caravan services.[5]

He and Stonny exchanged insults like a married couple who had known each other too long.[6] The two had slept together on a few drunken occasions, but afterwards were largely too embarassed to talk about it.[7] Gruntle was also friends with a suicidal caravan guard named Buke in whom he saw much of himself.[8]

He preferred to fight with two Gadrobi cutlasses[8] and had a habit of rolling his shoulders.[9]

In Memories of IceEdit

The Road to CapustanEdit

At the opening of the book, Gruntle served the merchant Keruli, escorting his caravan along the main road between Darujhistan and Capustan. Despite his usual distaste for traders, he considered the man to run against the grain enough to threaten Gruntle's long-cherished disgust for merchants. Also, he considered that Keruli might not even be what he was showing, but rather an important person in disguise.[10]

While the caravan was waiting to pass near a bridge destroyed by the Jaghut Tyrant Raest after his release two months prior, Gruntle met Emancipor Reese, the manservant of the infamous necromancer duo, Bauchelain and Korbal Broach. Reese requested Gruntle meet his masters which Keruli encouraged, interested in what the pair were up to.[10]

Bauchelain led him into the hills to where Broach awaited at the remains of the tomb where Raest was once chained. Filled with both unease and fear in the pair's presence, he turned down their request to accompany them inside. After quizzing the guard captain over recent events involving Moon's Spawn and forestalling Broach's desire the kill him, Bauchelain sent Gruntle back to camp. Gruntle sensed Keruli's distant observation and advised that they stay clear of the two necromancers.[10]

The necromancers later hired Gruntle's friend Buke as a guard, and Gruntle tried to warn him off. But Buke was sure Broach was behind a series of murders in Darujhistan and sought to bring the pair to justice. He refused to heed Gruntle's advice.[11]

Gruntle's caravan arrived in Saltoan where Keruli organised a meeting with the city's crimelords. The merchant advised of the Pannion Domin threat and suggested ways of combatting its influence among the citizenry. Gruntle was surprised to hear that Saltoan had recently seen its own spate of strange murders, supporting Buke's theories.[8]

On the road between Saltoan and Capustan, the caravan encountered Hetan and her two brothers hunting for demons rumoured to be in the area. They joined the caravan and the lust Hetan soon bedded Gruntle. The caravan soon encountered the abandoned wreck of the necromancer's carriage. Searching inside, Gruntle found Broach's blood-slicked child, proving Buke's suspicions. The necromancers and Buke soon returned reporting that they had been attacked by one of Hetan's demons.[8]

For safety's sake, the two groups continued on together, but before the caravan reached Capustan, the demons struck. In actuality, they were undead K'Chain Che'Malle K'ell Hunters. Six attacked the caravan, and Gruntle was severely injured.[8] After their rescue by Grey Swords and an army of T'lan Imass, Stonny tearfully informed him that Harllo had perished in the attack. Gruntle remembered Harllo throwing himself between his captain and an attacker.[12]

CapustanEdit

Gruntle was chosen as the Mortal Sword of Trake. After being selected by Treach, he was tattooed with tiger barbs, his eyes saw with inhuman acuity and he acquired a spatial sensitivity that made control of his body absolute. He could walk a forest in absolute silence or freeze, becoming perfectly motionless, shielding even the breath he drew. On a psychological level, instinctive decisions now lurked just beneath the surface and the violence residing in him was that of a killer - cold and implacable, devoid of compassion or ambiguity.[13]

After the breach of the city walls during the siege of Capustan by the Pannion Domin, he united a group of normal citizens and soldiers into an effective fighting force. Treach granted him the power to cause this crew of normal humans to semble into a giant, emerald tiger, almost like a reverse D'ivers. This group fought and defended a building until the arrival of the Bridgeburners and their Barghast allies to the city.

Following the siege of Capustan, Gruntle and his followers accompanied Dujek's renegade Malaz 5th Army and their allies, to take part in the attack on Coral.

In Toll the HoundsEdit

Gruntle signed on with the Trygalle Trade Guild. He was one of the shareholders tasked with transporting Mappo Runt.

In The Crippled God Edit

Gruntle was killed at the opening of the gate to Starvald Demelain as he fought against Kilava. Gruntle reluctantly fought her while the Eleints began to pour through the gate into the world. After attacking an Eleint, Gruntle was thrown into a rock wall, which shattered his body and caused Treach to flee his Mortal Sword as Gruntle died. Gruntle's last thoughts were of Stonny.

Fan art galleryEdit

Notes and referencesEdit

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