The Widow Harun
Regent of Ulgarth, Khan of Durpar and Veldorn, and Chief of the Shaaran Hyena Tribe
Mongke is a muscular, barrel-chested Half-Tuigan who often wears a topknot. He is almost always found armed, since he is often on campaign.
Born in 1397, Mongke is the son of Batu and grandson of Jebe Khan. The ambitious Mongke was only thirteen when he was made Chief of the Shaaran Hyena tribe in 1410. The following year he married Artusas, a high-ranking woman of the Shaaran Lion tribe. In the following years he ruthlessly consolidated his control over his and his wife’s tribe and expanded their territory deep into Veldorn, culminating in 1413 when the Shaarans enlisted the aid of the Durpari to smash the beast chiefdoms once and for all. Many of the monsters of Veldorn, such as the vampires and the beholders, were simply exterminated. Some were driven into the mountains where Ogres and Stone Giants allied to The Golden Family largely destroyed them over the next decade. Other humanoids of the area, such as large numbers of minotaurs, joined Mongke’s forces, where they were given their own banner units and kept at the front in the subsequent campaigning. For example, the next year (1414) the banner units were heavily used when the Shaarans betrayed their Durpari allies and seized the northern half of Durpar, bringing them into contact with Ulgarth across The River Xon.
In 1410 the thirteen year old Mongke rode with his father and grandfather on the second of The Great Raids against the border cities of The Shaar. But years later his ambitions at home in The Shaar had been thwarted by his childless marriage. The eventual Khan of All Shaarans would be Yakub, son of Mongke’s cousin Arigh Boke. Frustrated, Mongke took a second wife, Shatila of Ulgarth, with whom he fathered Drasna, the next King of that land. Upon becoming Regent of Ulgarth in 1417 Mongke’s domains were recognized as a new realm of the Empire. In 1423 he added the vale of Solon to his possessions by strong-arming the Sheik of Raurin.
With the death of Subedei Khatun in 1426, a power struggle long brewing between branches of The Golden Family came to the surface in The Tuigan March, where the Noyan previously loyal to the Khatun found themselves variously courted and assailed by other members of The Golden Family. The contest for power pit Mongke against his cousin Arigh Boke, with their fathers Jochi and Batu working behind the scenes and Rurik attempting to play kingmaker.
This struggle almost took a turn for the worse because of a horse race between the two Khans’ wives in 1427. When Arigh Boke‘s wife Anawat chose to compete in the big race at the Shaarmid horse fair that year, Artusas saw a chance to embarrass her rival and advance her husband’s fortunes by entering the race herself. She and Anawat would compete head to head in adjacent lanes. The wagers were steep and the race almost a blowout, but though Artusas and her Dambraai Drow’s Bane held a commanding lead for most of the track, West Wind, the Lhesperan ridden by Anawat, pulled ahead in the final length, defeated Artusas and even managed to place. This has dampened the conflict between the two women and for the moment forestalled a more direct confrontation between their branches of the family, but the ill feelings are not gone.