|“||... a tiny thing in black, almost impossible to take seriously as a danger... The combatants went on for maybe fifteen minutes, shredding each other. I got the impression things were not going as easy as Shifter had hoped. Bringer was putting up a damned good fight.||”|
Stormbringer, sometimes just Bringer and later Stormshadow, was one of the original Ten Who Were Taken. A woman of unimpressive stature and small frame, she nevertheless had the ability to create devastating, utterly relentless storms which could last days, and which featured torrential downpours and targeted lightning blasts. In unarmed, physical combat, she would also prove to be ferociously powerful and resilient.
Stormbringer was a key ally of the Black Company up until her betrayal of the Lady at Battle of Charm, during which she was presumed killed. She unexpectedly resurfaced years later – thousands of miles away from the Lady's Empire – during one of the Black Company's most infamous defeats: the Battle of Dejagore.
Before the Annals[edit | edit source]
The Domination[edit | edit source]
Prior to or during the era known as the Domination, Stormbringer was an independent wizard with considerable power in the northern continent. Then she was enslaved by the infamous sorcerer known only as the Dominator, becoming one of the Ten Who Were Taken. As such, Bringer was forced to become one of the Dominator's enforcers and generals, but presumably was also one of his subordinate lords with control over much territory. Nothing else specific to Bringer is recorded in the Annals about her role during the Domination, except that she, Soulcatcher, and the third woman Taken were the Dominator's lovers.
After about a century of tyrannical rule, they were all defeated (but not killed) by a mysterious woman called the White Rose and her armies in the Great Forest. Bringer, alongside the Dominator, the Dominator's wife the Lady, the other nine Taken, were all imprisoned in the Barrowland alongside a considerable number of horrendous demons. The imprisonment was meant to last for eternity.
Liberation and service to the Lady[edit | edit source]
Several decades before The Black Company (and 370 years after being interred in the Barrowland), Stormbringer, the other nine Taken, and the Lady were freed from their prison by a group known as the Resurrectionists. To keep power to herself, the Lady orchestrated this event such that the Dominator and his "pet" demons remained imprisoned. Stormbringer and the other Taken would soon join the Lady in building their headquarters, the Tower at Charm. Then, the Taken served as the Lady's generals in the consolidation wars, helping her establish her own dominion, the Lady's Empire, over a huge span of the north.
The Black Company[edit | edit source]
Versus Harden at the Stair of Tear[edit | edit source]
During the time that the Black Company was employed by the Lady, she assisted them with a massive storm during their march across the Windy Country toward the Stair of Tear. Her storm was essential at keeping the Rebel forces of Harden at bay until they reached the mountain pass. During the opening assault, Bringer cast a powerful spell which melted rock, and created a lava flow which traveled downhill onto advancing Rebel troops inflicting heavy casualties. Shortly afterward, Stormbringer, Soulcatcher, and the Hanged Man led a surgical strike to assassinate Harden at a small meadow near sandstone pillars at the Stair. The three Taken (with some soldiers in tow including Croaker and Raven) used their flying carpets to descend upon Harden in a surprise attack. Stormbringer struck first, using a lightning blast to strike the Rebels accompanying Harden. The other Taken joined the fight, but soon Harden, now alone, struck back. He used a formidable sorcery to freeze all three of the Taken in place. Before he could finish them, however, Harden was ambushed by Shapeshifter, who had been disguised as his mount the entire time. Stormbringer and the others were actually diversions. While Bringer and the other two Taken struggled to rid themselves of the violet-colored sorcery, Bringer's two subordinates helped Shifter finish Harden. Before he died, Harden flung his sword, which pierced the Hanged Man's skull. Soulcatcher and Stormbringer made it clear that the Hanged Man should be left to die, causing Shifter to feel betrayed. This would be the first indication that the women among the Taken were not loyal to the Lady.
At the Battle of Charm[edit | edit source]
During the Battle of Charm, she and the other two female Taken were secretly in league with the Dominator. Bringer was the first to betray the Lady, by attacking two of the male Taken. First, she somehow caused such grievous injury to Shapeshifter that the entire Empire (with sole exception of the Lady) thought he died. She did this without being immediately identified as the attacker, and kept fighting alongside imperial forces for awhile longer. On another day of that battle, she openly attacked Bonegnasher, killing him, but reportedly dying in the process. However, Stormbringer survived, and fled south. Stormbringer faked her own death so effectively that the Lady herself thought she died. Only Shapeshifter, after his recovery, discovered the truth of Bringer's survival, and he did not share this information with anyone except his shape-changing apprentice, Lisa Daele Bowalk.
Shadow Games[edit | edit source]
Shadowmaster in the south[edit | edit source]
In the southern continent, Stormbringer took on a new identity as Stormshadow, allying herself with Longshadow and becoming one of the four Shadowmasters. The Shadowmasters were a fractured and distrustful group, but she was often in league with Shadowspinner and was probably his lover. She participated in their wave of conquests that brought the Shadowlands (the territory south of the Dandha Presh) under their control. Her major conquest was the unwalled city of Dejagore, a place known as Jaicur to its residents. She built a brand new city called "Stormgard" directly on top of the old city, leaving numerous abandoned tunnels and hidden underground places. Most importantly, she added tall walls all around the city, establishing a formidable personal headquarters.
Battle of Dejagore[edit | edit source]
At the Battle of Dejagore, she was cornered in the parapet of her castle by Shapeshifter, his apprentice Lisa Daele Bowalk, and a group of Company members including Croaker, Lady, One-Eye, and Murgen. Stormshadow was so powerless that Croaker guessed Shifter knew her true name. Shifter removed her mask, exposing her identity to everyone's shock but his own, and wrestled her to a total standstill at the cost of all his energy. One-Eye would take the opportunity to knock out both Shifter and Bringer, and with Goblin's help, soon burned them both to ash. The war against the Shadowmasters would continue, but after the deaths of these two Taken, only the Howler and Soulcatcher would remain of the original Ten.
|Ten Who Were Taken|
|Soulcatcher • The Howler • The Limper • Shapeshifter • Stormbringer|
The Hanged Man • Bonegnasher • Nightcrawler • Moonbiter • The Faceless Man