“We hail our Pharaoh, for his rule is absolute and eternal. He who has foiled death does what is best for Khaepsha-ultan, and we will follow his every command, for he will bring us to glory and absolution. We hail our Pharaoh, for his word is infinite.”
- - Unknown
Pharaoh Khyannarith of the Khyan Lineage, otherwise known as Khyannarith the Deathless and the Dark Pharaoh, is a member of Ankhor nobility and the current Pharaoh of Khaepsha-ultan, alongside the recognized most powerful ruler of the southwestern region of the Sea of Sand of Koldenwelt. An egotistical and intimidating character, Khyannarith is driven by ideals pertaining to the concepts of predestination and purpose, believing himself to be the the rightful ruler of the lands of the Sea of Sand and to be blessed by either the Twelve Gods or Isiris due to his nature as a seemingly immortal presence, alongside the one to eventually fulfil the Inheritor's Legacy left by the Sohet. The Dark Pharaoh acts nearly always with intention and hidden motivations, rarely having allowed himself to be observed outside of his palace following his coronation although it is known that he is rather charismatic and almost seductive in his behaviour, boasting a dominating and unflinching attitude as a result of a combination of his own self-assertion and his age.
A dangerously ambitious and undaunted individual, Khyannarith, while proclaiming to hold the pride of his nation in high regard, treats a majority of his mortal subjects and followers as if they were unenlightened children as a show of arrogance and his partial detachment from empathy for others, with his mind and viewpoint predominantly focusing on the larger and wider picture at hand rather than small details; this afflicts him in such a manner that he has a tendency to underestimate the capacity of others and allow himself to let his guard down. One of the most powerful arcane spellcasters in the entire region and an unnaturally-proficient swordsman, the Dark Pharaoh rarely acts directly from beyond the shadows in which he resides, instead allowing his disciples and followers to fulfill his bidding - yet his presence is almost omnipresence in the southwestern stretch of the Sea of Sand.
Prince Khyannarith of the Khyan Lineage was born in the Fall of 1,186 BNA within the confines of the Monarchial Estate of Khaepsharathas as the only heir to Pharaoh Khyanonnos and his queen, Khyanamense. The great-grandson of the first Pharaoh of the Khyan Lineage, Khyansenna, Khyannarith was groomed for the inheritance of the kingdom from a young age by handlers and serfs of the Pharaoh, possessing a somewhat distant relationship with his father while sharing a close and intimate relationship with his mother, who he came to admire as a personal role model due to her beauty and confidence alongside her care for him. When granted the option to participate in the Golden Battalions as a young teenager, Khyannarith accepted and was stationed in the northeastern settlements of Khaepsha-ultan, where he quickly rose through the ranks and discovered his seemingly natural affinity for arcane magicks, which in turn caught the attention of the magi of the Cabal of the Pharaoh.
After some decades of combating a variety of desert-native threats and commanding slave raids, Khyannarith was drawn from the northeastern sector to participate in a major military campaign involving conflicts at the expanding border of Khaepsha-ultan in the Western Forests with the Honsaru Domain; it was during this campaign that Khyannarith was "assassinated" by Lagosi swordsmen from the State of Yosae - a vassal state of the Domain - and swiftly returned to life through means inherently magic yet unknown to him, allowing him to dispose of his would-be killers and continue to attempt to push into the Western Forests throughout the rest of the campaign before he received orders from superiors - and a personal message from the Pharaoh himself - to abort the campaign and preserve resources and infantry. Khyannarith ended his career in the Golden Battalions as a High Captain following the resignation of Pharaoh Khyanonnos due to illness, with Khyannarith being crowned and coronated as the successor Pharaoh in 1,150 BNA. Following his coronation, Khyannarith became more entwined with the Cabal that served the Pharaoh and became distant from his former social and outgoing self, instead coming to adopt a mentality driven by faith and a new sense of purpose.
Following multiple assassinations attempts upon his person, each of which unsuccessful due to either having evaded them entirely or resurrecting from death, Khyannarith became involved in the Sandstorm Emnity in 860 BNA following degraded and increasingly hostile relations with the Merovar Dynasty, having commanded his most loyal followers and servants to attempt to gather Sohet artifacts from Sohitaria which would drive the two nations into a state of war - which was later escalated by a failed attempt at the reunification of the Drifting Tribes of Khahurnim, alongside support garnered from the city-state of Mivtzar. Following three decades of open conflict, the Colossus of Sand, Almonohuim, was stirred and sought to forcefully cease the war via destroying portions of Khaepsha-ultan lands and many military assets, while Karnak the Hedonist, whom Khyannarith had met with personally on various occasions prior and during the Emnity, was devoured by the Colossus. The Sandstorm Emnity had left Khyannarith bitter yet more determined to improve Khaepsha-ultan's standing as a superpower, founding ambitions that would come into play during the course of the New Age.
Pharaoh Khyannarith appears as a tall, muscular and athletically-built Ankhor with defined, handsome facial and bodily features and an astonishingly young appearance in contrast for his age; despite his status as a millennial entity, Khyannarith retains the appearance of a young Ankhor in his prime, standing upright and taller than the average Ankhor while boasting an impressive physical form. Khyannarith's form is decorated with various scars as a result of various attempts on his life, bearing them most prominently across his stomach - his first fatal wound as afflicted by a Yosaean blade - and across his chest and throat. His eyes are naturally dark, yet they become illuminated when using arcane magic, and he is known to adorn himself with a degree of make-up, such as golden lipstick and polish.
The Pharaoh often wears an augmented version of the male equivalent of the monarchial Pharaoh robes, tailored to emphasize the musculature of his torso and upper body, and the standard Pharaoh's headdress as a sign of status amongst his peers and subjects; he is also known to possess ceremonial armour and religious robes for various occasions. Khyannarith keeps a decoratively-patterned sheath for his personal ancestral blade, Eclipse, attached to his belt both for ceremonial and combat purposes and is known to subconsciously caress its length out of some form of habit. Amongst various pieces of jewellery, such as rings, bracelets, and earrings, Khyannarith is known to have a glyphic tattoo of a Sand Drake upon his tongue and a notable birthmark in the shape of a scarab beetle located above the base of his tail.
The Pharaoh is a dangerously ambitious and narcissistic individual who is absent of a great deal of empathy and sympathy that would be natural for a majority of mortals, considered to be vain even by the standards of other Ankhor, yet he justifies his goals and motivations as serving a greater benefit for Khaepsha-ultan and his species as a whole rather than purely for himself; while conceited and notably manipulative, Khyannarith is known to be patriotic and takes pride in his service as the Pharaoh, participating in the resolution of issues that afflict the kingdom inside and out rather than remaining entirely self-interested. He is known to be a follower of the philosophies of purpose and destiny, believing greatly in the concept of fate and supposedly knows that his empire shall achieve the fabled Inheritor's Legacy and truly succeed the Sohet.
Khyannarith considers himself as knowledgeable as he is divine, having an affinity for both native and foreign literature and is known to take pleasure in rich and artistic pursuits such as painting. While Khyannarith can barely connect intimately with other people due to his egotism, he knows how to emotionally manipulate them through his charismatic and seductive approach, going so far as to indulge himself in intercourse with both sexes while holding little to no emotional attachment of his own towards either. Khyannarith prefers to focus on large scales rather than intricate details in regards to his motivations, seeking to perfect Khaepsha-ultan as a whole and being willing to sacrifice any number of individuals in order to achieve such so long as he succeeds. The Pharaoh is known to be largely insular and dislikes making public appearances, usually sending ambassadors and diplomats to spread his word, and is infamous for his habit of making misjudged decisions regarding the capacity and potential of his enemies and rivals.
Pharaoh Khyannarith, as most Ankhor are, is swift and agile and his martial capabilities are reinforced by over a millennium of practice and training with unarmed combat and melee weaponry, holding a particular preference for longswords. Due to his stature and physical capacity, Khyannarith holds more stamina and strength than the average Ankhor and is thought to excel beyond their peak range, holding a degree of superhuman physical potential. Khyannarith is also known to be affiliated with arcane sorcery and is capable of utilising a majority of available spells and abilities tied to the school, with both his spellcasting and martial abilities being complimented by a cunning and sharp intellect despite his apparent fanaticism and delusion.
However, his attitude and boastful self-assurance often opens Khyannarith to numerous vulnerabilities which can allow others to obtain an edge over him in combat and in intellect; despite his healing factor, his status as an immortal, and his inherent ability to resurrect from death, returning into existence so long as his soul continues to exist, Khyannarith still feels pain as a mortal would and reacts to it in a similar manner. Due to his tendency to underestimate threats, Khyannarith is known to lose his self-assurance and become panicked at the first indication of events swaying outside of his favour, which in turn afflicts his intellect and his ability to improvise.
- Amanaten - “Not only does your Pharaoh command you, but he confides in you also.”
- Monolith - “To resist my Bygone Warmonger is futile, futile, futile!”
- Asemath - “A true leader is compelled rather than benign.”
- Volim the Greedy - “Even pitiful marauders are subject to a destiny beyond their calling.”
- Shuseisi - “To turn away from your Pharaoh is equal to turning away from fate.”
- Praenuntius - “... I fear immortals no more than I do mortals.”
- Vestige - “I am commanded by destiny to avenge the Sohetar Realm, my nemesis.”
- Vixaatus - “It is saddening to bear witness to an elder dragon so misguided.”
- Almonohuim - “There shall come a day where the sands answer to you no longer.”
“You have attempted against our ancestors even when they gave you shelter, tried to steal from us what we have protected all our lives. Your crimes will never be forgiven, tyrant.”
“Do not mistake my mercy for weakness. You exist as I see fit, and you will eventually vanish just the same, pigdog.”
- - Asemath
“You have eluded death long enough. Your time runs short.”
“You may have a place in the world. Though He may dictate your fate in a different manner.”
- Khyannarith was inspired by characters from various pieces of media, most notably Imhotep from The Mummy, Dio Brando from JoJo's Bizarre Adventure, and Xerxes I of Persia from 300.