Ammanas was the Ruler of the Warren of Shadow, Kurald Emurlahn, and the Ruler/King of High House Shadow. Relatively new to that position, it was not completely secure. As King, he commanded High House Shadow, including the Hounds of Shadow.
Ammanas was known to be crafty and unpredictable, and worked with his partner Cotillion in most matters. Many of the pivotal events throughout the series were the result of his web of schemes.
Ammanas' voice was described as reed-thin and he spoke with a Dal Honese accent. His vocal performance was often described by strong attributes such as manic shrieking, giggling, sniffing, cackling and hissing. Only on very rare occasions was he heard speaking quietly without affectation. He had long, spindly fingers.
Ammanas considered Malazan Empress Laseen an enemy. He believed the Empress to be with her back to the wall and possibly about to fall without his and Cotillion's help, something he felt to be unsatisfactory. Cotillion believed that Ammanas had always underestimated Laseen and that their current situation (i.e. at the beginning of Gardens of the Moon) was a result of that.
- 1 In Gardens of the Moon
- 2 In Deadhouse Gates
- 3 In Memories of Ice
- 4 In House of Chains
- 5 In Midnight Tides
- 6 In The Bonehunters
- 7 In Reaper's Gale
- 8 In Toll the Hounds
- 9 In The Crippled God
- 10 In Night of Knives
- 11 In Return of the Crimson Guard
- 12 In Stonewielder
- 13 In Dancer's Lament
- 14 In Deadhouse Landing
- 15 In Kellanved's Reach
- 16 History
- 17 Quotes
- 18 Notes and references
In Gardens of the Moon
Shadowthrone and Cotillion began settling scores with the Empress in 1161 BS. They appeared before the fishergirl who would later become known as Sorry on a road in Itko Kan. There Shadowthrone ordered the Hounds of Shadow to slaughter the Nineteenth Regiment of the Itko Kanese 8th Cavalry that had just passed by. After eliminating the possibility of witnesses to their actions, Shadowthrone watched as Cotillion possessed Sorry. Cotillion/Sorry then joined the Malazan marines, requesting to serve under High Fist Dujek Onearm in Genabackis.
Ammanas turned up again two years later in 1163 BS in Pale just after Ganoes Paran had been fatally stabbed by a still possessed Sorry. Paran had been assigned to investigate the girl, and Cotillion hoped his provocative murder of the Empress' agent would "draw her into the fray." Ammanas warned Cotillion/Sorry that something had entered their Warren uninvited and that they had stumbled upon another player's game. Ammanas swore to identify the interloper, but Cotillion/Sorry reminded him that toppling Laseen and the Empire was still their primary goal, adding that Ammanas should not get distracted.
While tracking the intruder, Shadowthrone and his Hounds met Ganoes Paran's now no longer dying spirit at Hood's Gates. Shadowthrone demanded the identity of Paran's benefactor, who had saved the young captain's life and opposed Shadowthrone's plans. But Paran did not relinquish the information. Instead he convinced Shadowthrone it was in his best interest to let Paran live as a known agent of his enemy rather than allow a different unknown entity to take his place. Shadowthrone agreed, telling Paran that his shadow would follow the Captain should Paran return to the mortal world.
Quick Ben visited Shadowthrone at the Shadowkeep to identify Hairlock as the intruder and to bargain his location in exchange for lifting the Rope's death sentence from Quick. Shadowthrone agreed, realizing too late that Quick was his treacherous former High Priest.
Quick Ben fulfilled his end of the bargain, alerting Cotillion to Hairlock's presence on the Rhivi Plain. The Hounds tore the mad puppet to pieces before Doan and Ganrod were themselves slain by Anomander Rake. Shadowthrone appeared and was saddened to confirm that there was no possibility of release for his servants from Dragnipur. Rake warned Ammanas to end any of Shadow's scheming in Darujhistan or face the sword himself. Shadowthrone was forced to recall the Rope, who was thus forced to give up his possession of Sorry. By now recognizing Oponn as his chief antagonist, Shadowthrone left Rake to contend with the twin gods' schemes.
In Deadhouse Gates
Sorry, now known as Apsalar, traveled with Fiddler, Kalam, and Crokus to Seven Cities. There she experienced memories from the life of the god who had possessed her. From her account, they managed to work out Shadowthrone and Cotillion's true identities.
Shadowthrone sent the demon Apt to Raraku to gather information on the Path of Hands convergence. In the course of her duties, Apt was ensnared by Sha'ik until finally being released by the prophetess to guard Kalam during his trek across the continent. Apt returned to Shadowthrone at the place where Korbolo Dom had crucified thirteen hundred Malazan children. The demon pressured the god into healing the children and taking them into service at Shadowkeep. The god begrudgingly healed Panek and the other children.
Shadowthrone directed Iskaral Pust to lay false trails diverting the Path of Hands from the Shadow gate at Tesem to the Azath House Tremorlor. He feared that if the ruse failed his "precious realm" would "become very crowded indeed". Assisting Pust was Rellock, Apsalar's father. It transpired that instead of killing him when Sorry was possessed, Ammanas had taken the fisherman from Itko Kan to serve as Pust's servant and restored his missing arm.
When the Path of Hands had ended, Apsalar successfully petitioned Shadowthrone to return her and Rellock to their home and sever all association between them and the god. The god also brought Kalam and Minala into Shadow to serve as the surrogate mother and father for his new child servants.
In Memories of Ice
Ganoes Paran told Silverfox that it was rumoured that Emperor Kellanved and Dancer had found a way into the Deadhouse in Malaz City. She shocked Paran by revealing that the pair had then ascended and taken control of High House Shadow as Shadowthrone and Cotillion. A thirst for vengeance explained why the two Ascendants had been trying to destroy a mere mortal such as Laseen. Silverfox theorised that although the Deadhouse was aspected to Death, Hood already occupied the position of King of High House Death. Since every Azath House led to every gate and Warren, Kellanved and Dancer had chosen Shadow as that House and throne had been empty. Afterwards, the House of Shadow had taken its place in the Deck of Dragons.
At the Second Gathering of the T'lan Imass, the Logros Bonecaster, Olar Ethil, revealed that Shadowthrone had not lost control of the First Throne when he had ascended. Therefore he still commanded the Logros armies. Many years before the Gathering he had ordered Olar Ethil to seek out the world's other remaining T'lan Imass armies.
During the Pannion War, Dujek Onearm tried to put Empress Laseen's recent actions into context for Whiskeyjack. The average Malazan soldier believed that Whiskeyjack had been stripped of his rank to eliminate a potential rival to the throne. But Laseen had purposefully inverted the command structure so that "the right people would be there at ground level when Shadowthrone and Cotillion made their move."
Further, Dujek revealed that the T'lan Imass slaughter at Aren by the Logros T'lan Imass had not been what it seemed. It was not Laseen who had ordered the massacre, but Emperor Kellanved who was not quite as dead as it was believed. Dujek claimed the insane former Emperor had returned to the First Throne and ordered the slaughter to "wreak vengeance on Laseen, to shake her grip on the Empire."
In House of Chains
Cotillion, in conversation with Lostara Yil, revealed that while Emperor, Kellanved had sent the Bridgeburner, Quick Ben, to eliminate the Cult of Rashan in Ehrlitan. Quick Ben was accompanied by Dancer, although neither Dancer nor Kellanved knew who Quick Ben truly was. The Bridgeburner mage earned Kellanved's eternal vengeance when he allowed the cult's Master Bidithal to escape.
Cotillion also revealed that Shadowthrone was obsessed with seeing Laseen suffer for her betrayal. Cotillion claimed to "see further than my dear companion" and believed the Empress had her role and the success of her empire was crucial to the pair's longer game.
Cutter and Apsalar (with Dancer's stolen memories) speculated that Shadowthrone had learned from his early residence in the Deadhouse by taking on the Azath tactic of negation and disarmament. He already claimed both the Throne of Shadow and the First Throne. Perhaps his ultimate plan was to claim all of the Thrones and their power and then do nothing with it but take them off the board. Apsalar told Cutter that the Emperor and his companion had vanished for two years prior to their assassinations. During that time they had followed a trail through the warrens and to places where the warrens did not reach. The trail had something to do with the Houses of the Azath and the pair returned irrevocably changed. Their supposed murders had then given them time to consolidate their claim on Shadow while avoiding the attention of gods and ascendants. He was shocked to learn the Deragoth once again walked the deserts of Seven Cities.
Shadowthrone and Cotillion's claim on Shadow came under threat from an unknown enemy causing Cotillion to dispatch Kalam, Cutter, and Apsalar on various errands. Ammamas appeared on Drift Avalii after Cotillion had killed the Tiste Edur who attempted to take the Throne of Shadow for the Crippled God. Together they mourned Hawl's death and discussed Traveller, and the plans of the Talons. Ammanas stated it was not enough to stop the Talons, they needed to ensure they failed. Then he took his old friend into his confidence regarding his own endeadvours, specifically the demon-containing diamonds they had given Kalam.
In Midnight Tides
The Crimson Guard mage, Corlo, told the Letherii Acquitor, Seren Pedac, that the cursed Emperor Kellanved had driven their prince, K'azz D'Avore, from his lands. The Guard had vowed to take them back. Pedac replied that the lands of the Emperor must be very far away as she had never heard of him.
In The Bonehunters
Shadowthrone summoned Iskaral Pust before the Throne of Shadow and decided his High Priest would "have to do" and sent him off with instructions. Cotillion noted that Shadowthrone appeared less substantial than usual, and Ammanas admitted he was a little stretched of late.
On Shadowthrone's orders, Pust searched out Mappo Runt, who had fallen to the attack of Dejim Nebrahl. The T'rolbarahl had been released by the Nameless Ones to remove Mappo and allow the Nameless Ones to substitute a more pliant guardian with Icarium. Shadowthrone intended to counter the Nameless Ones' plans for Icarium. Pust's wife, Mogora, followed Pust to Mappo and interceded in the dying Trell's care, invoking a ritual of Ardata. The goddess appeared in Mappo's dreams, irritated by Mogora's presumption and curious over Shadowthrone's interest in the Trell. She quickly discerned Shadowthrone's intentions and was offended "he would so blithely assume my allegiance" and even more offended that his assumption was correct.
Ganoes Paran later used the Deck of Dragons to call upon an irritated Shadowthrone from the Nascent. Paran notified him that he planned to release all of the Deragoth to hunt Dejim Nebrahl, an idea Shadowthrone found "profoundly stupid". He was further enraged when Paran requested that he send the Hounds of Shadow to Seven Cities as well. But Paran understood that the freed Deragoth would first seek out their counterparts and if this occurred in the Shadow Realm all of Shadowthrone's plans would literally be "torn to pieces". Shadowthrone reluctantly agreed.
Ammanas sent the Hounds of Shadow to Seven Cities to finish off Dejim Nebrahl and lead the Deragoth to kill Poliel. They were also to kill Quick Ben, who was there to rescue his sister from Poliel in G'danisban, but were stopped by Apsalar, who used the Shadow Dance to ward them off. Ammanas blamed Cotillion for this since it had been his skills that had been imbibed by Apsalar.
He summoned Quick Ben to fend off Icarium from the First Throne. Ammanas later rescued Kalam Mekhar after he had been shot with a poisoned quarrel and took him to the Deadhouse. He was awed by Apsalar's Shadow Dance, commenting that he had never seen even Cotillion perform with such skill. He also informed Obo that the Twins Oponn had been meddling in the events from Obo's Tower, which caused Obo to eject them from the tower.
In Reaper's Gale
Shadowthrone and Hood travelled to the Refugium to meet Menandore. The god of Shadow claimed the three agreed on scant little other than that their previous impressions of each other were too generous. Shadowthrone poked fun at Hood, but offered that the three did agree on an unnamed matter that Hood wanted addressed. Menandore noted that she never accepted Shadowthrone's claim to Shadow. Nevertheless, Shadowthrone offered to assist the goddess against her sisters, Sukul Ankhadu and Sheltatha Lore, in return for a one-time access to the gate to Starvald Demelain. Menandore agreed and Hood noted the pair were worse than advocates before departing. Shadowthrone wistfully recalled how he had once considered butchering all the lawyers in his empire when he still ruled it.
Cotillion and Shadowthrone brought Quick Ben, Trull Sengar, Onrack T'emlava, and the other survivors of the defence of the First Throne to Shadow to recuperate. Shadowthrone sent out his Shadow wraiths to procure a longhouse, farm, and livestock that had wandered into Shadow for Minala and the Company of Shadow. Quick Ben still seethed at the god for pulling him away from Kalam in Malaz City when his friend needed him. Although, Shadowthrone had afterwards placed Kalam in an Azath House to heal, Cotillion withheld from Quick Ben the god's true motivation for saving his life. The High Mage demanded Cotillion provide him access to a gate to return to leave Shadow. Cotillion agreed, but warned that reality on the other side of the gate would remain unresolved until they passed through. The nature of their destination would be determined by themselves. Trull demanded Cotillion summon Shadowthrone back to provide a better explanation of what awaited them, but Ammanas was no more help.
The three eventually found themselves in the Refugium, along with the ghost of Hedge. Menandore did not appreciate the interference of the "pathetic mortals" and temporarily allied with Sukul and Sheltatha to kill them. In the conflict with Quick Ben and Hedge, both Menandore and Sheltatha were killed. Without the interference of the Soletaken, Silchas Ruin was to plant the seed of an Azath House near the Gates of Starvald Demelain. The resulting House rooted the Refugium in reality and took control of the twelve gates. Afterwards, Quick Ben speculated that this had been Shadowthrone and Cotillion's plan all along as the Azath's control of the gates meant the two gods now had full access to them.
In Toll the Hounds
Shadowthrone and Cotillion met Traveller and provide him with supplies and the Hounds as guides. They also confronted Karsa Orlong and warned him to stay out of Traveller's way.
In The Crippled God
Ammanas met Ganoes Paran on the roof of the keep in Kolanse that Paran's Host had conquered. He questioned Paran on his faith in his sister and struck a bet with the Captain about the ongoing siege. He sent Quick Ben and Kalam to the Host after losing the bet.
In Night of Knives
The past events of Kellanved and Dancer's ascension were detailed. During the night of the Shadow Moon in 1154 BS, both Kellanved and Dancer returned to Malaz City after having disappeared from the human realm for two years, during which time Laseen ruled the Empire. During these years, they had been exploring the Azath Houses. Upon their return they were targeted by Laseen for assassination. During the attempt at Mock's Hold that involved Laseen, Topper, and Otataral powder, both men seemingly fell out of a window over a cliff and into the sea and were presumed dead.
In reality, Dancer and Kellanved had used Laseen to stage their deaths. They went to the Deadhouse, an Azath House on the island, and ascended to High House Shadow and took control of its Throne. It has been theorized that Shadow was wandering over the physical realm like another layer of reality and that the night of the Shadow Moon was the convergence of the physical locations of Shadowkeep and the Deadhouse. In this way, they could ascend from the Deadhouse to the Shadow House.
Shadowthrone and Cotillion pulled Traveller, Kyle, and their companions into the Shadow realm. Once they were in Shadowkeep, Shadowthrone proposed to help Traveller find his "quarry" in return for "a mere service." Before he could elaborate, he detected an emergence from Kyle's sword which was revealed to be Osserc. A Hound of Shadow arrived and a confrontation seemed inevitable until Hethe, Shadowthrone's monkey-like servant, defused it. Osserc departed and Traveller bid Kyle farewell. He had accepted Shadowthrone's offer without revealing what it was. Soon after, Traveller appeared near Li Heng during the Battle of the Plains to defeat Skinner whose Crimson Guard threatened the existence of the Malazan Empire.
Renegade High Mage Ussü recalled Emperor Kellanved's instructions before the Malazan 6th Army left for the invasion of Korel. Kellanved informed him that the goal of conquering was not control of territory or resources, but was "about recasting the deck entirely...Everywhere, for every region--for every person--hands are dealt from the Dragons deck. To create true fundamental change you must force a complete reshuffling of all hands."
Shadowthrone later posed as the amnesiac Shadow priest Warran and traveled with Kiska and Jheval through Shadow. He was described as a dark skinned man with frizzy grey hair, grey uneven teeth, and beady yellow eyes. He was angered by the mad mage Yathengar's Chaos Whorl which devoured portions of his realm. At the site of the Whorl he watched with satisfaction as the Tiste Liosan Army of Light destroyed the Whorl even as it bloodied its own nose. Cotillion chastised him for wasting his time on such an unimportant task.
In Dancer's Lament
In Deadhouse Landing
In Kellanved's Reach
Before ascending, Ammanas was known as Kellanved, founder and Emperor of the Malazan Empire. He was originally from Dal Hon and described as a dark-skinned gnarled gnome of a man with curly grey hair. He also exhibited a penchant for wearing grey and black. He was shorter than Dancer. Cotillion described him as a "particularly adept and ambitious practitioner" of the Meanas Warren.
Before he became Emperor, Kellanved had been running a tavern on Malaz Island. He partnered with Dancer with the aim of taking over the criminal organizations that ruled over the island and overthrowing the local pirate ruler, Mock. They employed a young boy, Dujek.
Kellanved and Dancer spent a lot of time while in Malaz City accessing and exploring the Shadow Realm, becoming familiar with its idiosyncrasies and attributes. At one point, the two encountered Xethel, a 'daemon-like' local inhabitant of Kurald Emurlahn known as "brood-mother" who was apparently an elder of her small community and a magic user of some sort. During their friendly meeting - which was characterized by questions on both sides - Xethel significantly told Kellanved that she 'named' him Amman-an-ash, "The One Who Would Know Everything". Xethel then 'named' Dancer Coth-tel-ish-ath, "The One Who Watches and Judges".
Nok, Hawl, and Amaron - all Napans - were in hiding on the island after Nap was conquered by the Kingdom of Unta, but were discovered by Dujek and taken to his new employers. The scheme expanded further after Dancer bolstered their numbers by recruiting other Napan refugees who had fled their island, such as Cartheron and Urko Crust and Surly. Shortly thereafter, Toc the Elder, Dassem Ultor, Tayschrenn, and Duiker also joined. With this family, Kellanved and Dancer conquered Malaz Island. The group lived in the Deadhouse, which granted them longevity, immunity to most diseases, and certain other gifts.
The Napan faction of the family used Kellanved to crush the Untan hegemony and take the Napan isles back. Once the Kingdom of Unta on the Quon Tali mainland was conquered, the Malazan Empire was created.
At some point, Kellanved discovered the First Throne of the T'lan Imass which deemed him a worthy occupant. The Emperor used the Throne to awaken the nineteen thousand warriors of the Logros T'lan Imass and commanded them to use their unmatchable strength to conquer his enemies.
- "History comforts the dull-witted."
- ―Kellanved, quoted in Duiker's Imperial Campaigns, Volume One
- "Every throne is an arrow-butt."
- "Never ignore the barbarians."
- "An army that waits is soon an army at war with itself."
- "A throne is made of many parts, any one of which can break, to the king's eternal discomfort."
- "Is there anything more worthless than excuses?"
- "I have had visions of the future, and each and every one of them ends up in the same place. Don’t ask me what it means. I already know. That’s the problem with visions of the future."
- "I could never make up my mind if he was the biggest fool I'd ever met, or the most cunning bastard."
- ―Cartharon Crust about Kellanved
- "Leave feints to the nobility, And they can take their clever elegance to the barrow."
- ―Kellanved, on useless Untan Cavalry maneuvers
- "No one steals from me. Not even a fish."
- "In proclamation, one defines his enemy for his enemy"
Notes and references
- Gardens of the Moon, Glossary, UK MMPB p.706
- Gardens of the Moon, Dramatis Personae, UK MMPB p.xvi
- Deadhouse Gates, Dramatis Personae, UK MMPB p.20
- Gardens of the Moon, Chapter 4, UK MMPB p.155
- The Bonehunters, Chapter 2, US SFBC p.69
- Gardens of the Moon, Chapter 1, UK MMPB p.16
- Gardens of the Moon, Chapter 3, UK MMPB p.124
- Gardens of the Moon, Chapter 15, UK MMPB p.473 - When Anomander Rake killed two of the Hounds of Shadow was one of those rare moments
- The Bonehunters, Chapter 2, US SFBC p.71
- The Bonehunters, Chapter 11, US SFBC p.467
- Gardens of the Moon, Chapter 1, UK MMPB p.17/18
- Gardens of the Moon, Chapter 1
- Gardens of the Moon, Chapter 4, UK MMPB p.139/140
- Gardens of the Moon, Chapter 12, US HC p.279-281
- Gardens of the Moon, Chapter 15, US HC p.326-334
- Deadhouse Gates, Chapter 5, US HC p.129-130
- Deadhouse Gates, Chapter 1, US HC p.34
- Deadhouse Gates, Chapter 5, US HC p.133
- Deadhouse Gates, Chapter 11, US HC p.304-306
- Deadhouse Gates, Chapter 11, US HC p.305-306
- Deadhouse Gates, Chapter 24, UK MMPB p.927
- Deadhouse Gates, Chapter 11, US HC p.295-296
- Deadhouse Gates, Chapter 23, US HC p.583-584
- Memories of Ice, Chapter 4, US SFBC p.145-146
- Memories of Ice, Chapter 19, US SFBC p.674-675
- Memories of Ice, Chapter 15, US SFBC p.523
- Memories of Ice, Chapter 21, US SFBC p.770
- Memories of Ice, Chapter 21, US SFBC p.771-772
- House of Chains, Chapter 8, US SFBC p.327
- House of Chains, Chapter 8, US SFBC p.328
- House of Chains, Chapter 20, US SFBC p.650-652
- House of Chains, Chapter 20, US SFBC p.672
- House of Chains, Chapter 16, US SFBC p.554-555
- House of Chains, Chapter 23, US SFBC p.748-749
- House of Chains, Epilogue, US SFBC p.851
- Midnight Tides, Chapter 19, US SFBC p.579/582
- The Bonehunters, Chapter 2, US SFBC p.69-71
- The Bonehunters, Chapter 9, US SFBC p.413-420/422
- The Bonehunters, Chapter 11, US SFBC p.458-459
- The Bonehunters/Chapter 15, US SFBC p.466-468
- The Bonehunters, Chapter 15, UK MMPB p.722-769
- The Bonehunters, Chapter 21, UK MMPB p.993-997
- The Bonehunters, Chapter 23
- Reaper's Gale, Chapter 5, US HC p.128-129
- Reaper's Gale, Chapter 8, US HC p.188-192
- Reaper's Gale, Chapter 10, US HC p.258
- Reaper's Gale, Chapter 23, US HC p.741
- Night of Knives, Chapter 4
- Return of the Crimson Guard, Book 2 Chapter 6, US HC p.487-493
- Return of the Crimson Guard, Book 3 Chapter 2, US HC p.620-622
- Stonewielder, Chapter 3, US HC p.134
- Stonewielder, Chapter 6, UK TPB p.341-343
- Stonewielder, Chapter 7, UK TPB p.373
- Stonewielder, Epilogue, UK TPB p.629
- Gardens of the Moon, Dramatis Personae, UK MMPB p. xiii
- House of Chains, Chapter 8, US SFBC p.327
- House of Chains, Chapter 5, US SFBC p.247
- Deadhouse Landing, Chapter 3, US TPB p.57/59-62
- House of Chains, Chapter 5, US SFBC p.247-248
- Memories of Ice, Chapter 19, US SFBC p.675
- Gardens of the Moon, Chapter 9, US HC p.230-231
- Gardens of the Moon, Chapter 1, UK MMPB p.17/18
- Deadhouse Gates, Chapter 1 UK MMPB p.50
|Members of Kellanved's Family|
|The Originals||Kellanved • Dancer • Dujek • Amaron • Hawl • Nok|
|Expanded Family||Cartharon Crust • Dassem Ultor • Duiker • Surly (Laseen) • Tayschrenn • Toc the Elder • Urko Crust|
|Deck of Dragons and Tiles of the Holds|
|Cards||High House Chains • High House Dark • High House Death • High House Life • High House Light • High House Shadow • High House War • Unaligned|
|Tiles||Azath Hold • Beast Hold • Dragon Hold • Empty Hold • Ice Hold • Fulcra|