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Orghotts’ one and only wish is to become a true daemon. His origins are buried under the blood-flecked snow of three hundred winters, though the people of the Icehorn Tribe whisper that he was born of an unholy union between a Great Unclean One and a human witch. Whether this tryst was the result of a daemonic pact or something even fouler is best not dwelt upon.[1a]
Orghotts is consumed by resentment that he has one foot in the mortal realm and one in what he sees as his rightful domain, the Garden of Nurgle. The enemies of the Icehorn tribe call Orghotts the Bastard King of Icehorn Peak, though none use this title in his presence, for the well of buried anger that suffocates the warlord’s soul can boil over in a single deadly instant.[1a]
Icehorn Peak is situated in the far north of the world, on the penumbra of the Realm of Chaos, and the people that eke out a living from the god-touched wilderness are well used to seeing the shimmering landscape disgorge entire hosts of daemons. Orghotts has dwelt on the margin of his master’s domain for several centuries, for the ichor that runs in his veins lends him a sham immortality that has extended his lifespan to many times that of the oldest human.[1a]
The Realm of Chaos ebbs and flows across the lands as the power of the Dark Gods waxes and wanes, and at times its has spilt over the mountains to consume Icehorn Peak and those who dwell in its shadow. Orghotts has, at times, even walked the twisting pathways of the Garden of Nurgle, though instead of being the transcendent paradise he had hoped for it proved instead a tantalising hell. The Bastard King wandered the Realm of Chaos at one step removed, able to see the garden unfold around him but unable to breathe in the nostril- blasting scents of its bright fungus or taste the rancid spores that floated lazily through the air.[1a]
It was a vision of heaven dangled in front of his aching senses, granting not peace but instead inflaming Orghotts’ desire to appreciate Nurgle’s gifts fully. The only things he was able to touch there were a pair of rot-bladed axes that he found embedded deep in the trunk of a twisted tree that had once been a dreaming life-wizard. The axes were of mortal origin, and though it took every ounce of his strength, Orghotts wrenched them loose and took them for his own. He fights with these plague-caked Rot Axes to this day, a permanent reminder of the time he stood upon the threshold of his destiny.[1a]
There was a period in Orghotts' history where he would regularly consort with - and even consume - the daemonic servants of the Lord of Decay in an attempt to contract Nurgle's Rot. He did this in the hope that he would die from the spiritual disease and become a Plaguebearer, as had so many lesser tribesmen before him. Devout as he was, he felt sure that the Lord of Decay would take pity on his devoted disciple and reforge him in immortal form. Ironically, the same unnatural resilience granted to him by his half-daemon nature kept him from the embrace of death and the nirvana that lay on the other side. Nurgle's Rot claimed him as a vessel, even reshaping his mortal form so that the single horn of a plaguebearer sprouted from his skull in place of his left eye, but it did not claim him completely as he had hoped. Though he has since spread that most transcendent of diseases to countless mortals, Orghotts remains stranded on the mortal plane.[1a]
Like countless warlords before him, Orghotts walks the path to glory in search of his god’s favour. This treacherous road leads only to death, to transformation into a mewling Chaos spawn, or - for a rare few - to immortality as a daemon prince. Though Orghotts’ daemonic allies have intimated that even daemon princes bear the stigma of the mortal seed that birthed them, he strives for that status nonetheless, for if he wins favour enough to cross the divide he will at last become a true immortal.[1a]
In his quest for Nurgle’s approval, Orghotts has sailed in search of glory on many occasions. He has led entire tribes south across the Sea of Chaos, through the wilderness of Norsca and into the Empire. He fought at the Battle of Kislev's Gates during the Great War Against Chaos in 2303, challenging and swiftly slaying the warrior priests and grand masters of the Sigmarite armies sent to stop him.[1a]
Though Orghotts considers himself a mere shadow of the warrior he will one day become, in battle he has always proved to be a force of terrible destruction. Heavily armoured and all but immune to physical wounds, those fast enough to land a blow on Orghotts' stout frame invariably find their attack shrugged off, and a decapitating blow levelled at them in return. Even those of his blows that do not truly connect can be lethal -a single scratch from the Rot Axes will fester and turn gangrenous in a second, laying the victim low even as Orghotts barrels past in search of fresh opportunities to prove his worth. Those assailants that do manage to penetrate Orghotts' armour and pierce his skin quickly learn the truth behind his name. Whenever the warlord’s flesh is cut open, a gout of daemonic ichor spew out with shocking force. Its vitriolic potency is enough to burn through steel and dissolve the flesh beneath. It is a testament to the length of Orghotts’ violent odyssey that more men have been killed by his tainted lifeblood than by the blades of the latter-day champions that march alongside him.[1a][1b]
The daemonic vitae that runs in Orghotts’ blood proved unpredictably useful in the harnessing of Whippermaw, the pox maggoth that the warlord rides to war. Orghotts first encountered the monstrous maggot- thing slumbering in the quagmires of the Eternal Lagoon. Guided into the stinking morass by a vision of Nurgle's fecund favour, Orghotts wisely waited until Whippermaw was in a digestive torpor after devouring a swamp drake before approaching the beast. The maggoth slammed a long claw into Orghotts’ neck, but just as its long tongue whipped out to ensnare him and yank him towards its two gnashing mouths, the scent of daemon ichor gave the beast pause.[1b]
Seeing his chance, Orghotts caught the beast’s lashing tongue in his gauntlet and swung up onto its back, using the whip-like appendage as an improvised rein with which to yank the pox maggoth left and right until it had learned to obey his commands.[1b]
Any other warrior would have been swiftly thrown off and chewed in half, but the scent of Nurgle’s favour ran in Orghotts’ veins. So it is that he rides a powerful pox maggoth to this day, a beast just as impervious to harm as its master. As the scale of his deeds grows ever greater, Orghotts’ chances of true immortality become greater with every passing night.[1b]