Deadsmell was a mage in Sergeant Balm's 9th squad of Medium infantry in the 8th Legion of the Malaz 14th Army. He was the squad's healer, and had access to High Denul. His name likely came from his musty odor.
Deadsmell was part of Adjunct Tavore Paran's punitive expedition against the Army of the Apocalypse. On the road from Aren to Raraku, his squad had done their share of the fighting, and their names were well known amongst the other soldiers in the legion.
After the Battle of Raraku, Leoman led the Army of the Apocalypse westward to Y'Ghatan and the 14th Army followed. Upon reaching the outskirts of the city, Deadsmell, Throatslitter, and Widdershins settled in for a game of Troughs. Sergeant Balm, pessimistic of their chances, went off to create his death-mask.
In the hours before the Last Siege of Y'Ghatan, Balm engaged Moak in a game of Troughs, but soon became overwhelmed by "the Confusion". He knocked over the board, unclear who he was and what he was doing. Deadsmell led his sergeant to safety from an angry Moak while congratulating Balm on a clever ruse for ending a losing game. Balm could not respond because he no longer understood what language Deadsmell was speaking.
Adjunct Tavore launched the attack on Y'Ghatan by sending the army's sappers to breach the city's wall under the cover of night. First into the city were the Malazan marines, followed quickly by the heavy and medium infantry. Once inside the city, the Malazans immediately came under attack from swordsmen on the ground and archers in the buildings above them.
Balm's squad pushed forward well beyond the other Malazan troops and took cover in a building filled with bolts of silk. While Galt and Lobe watched the street from the windows, Deadsmell, Throatslitter, and Widdershins went to investigate a noise upstairs. The three soldiers discovered the walls of the entire building had been filled with olive oil. Realising what Leoman meant to do, Balm's squad attempted to report their findings to Fist Keneb. But it was too late. When enough Malazans were engaged in street fighting inside the city, Leoman sprung his trap. The city's olive oil-soaked buildings were set alight and the streets quickly became an inferno.
Fleeing from the flames, they soon joined a mixed group of survivors from Hellian's, Fiddler's, Cord's, and Gesler's squads, who made their way to the Temple of the Queen of Dreams. Deadsmell was among the small group of soldiers who survived Y'Ghatan by tunneling their way out from under the city. They spent three days crawling on their hands and knees through the dark led by Bottle and his rat. During the ordeal, Deadsmell and a panicking Balm quarreled over Balm's verbal abuse of a refugee child. The corporal vowed, "if I was that child ahead of you, I'd shit right in your face."
Unaware that any had survived, the 14th Army made haste for the Kokakal Sea to embark on Admiral Nok's ships and escape the Bluetongue Plague ravaging Seven Cities. On the long trek following the army across the desert, Deadsmell and Lutes did their best to tend to the survivors. While Deadsmell treated Masan Gilani after Dejim Nebrahl's attack, Bottle realised the mage was a necromancer.
After the survivors caught up to the 14th Army, Gesler and Stormy were given back command of the Silanda. They requested that Balm and Fiddler's squads serve as their crew for the return voyage to Quon Tali. Deadsmell was later among the soldiers on the Silanda who taunted the passing Jakatakan Fleet by waving and holding up one of the ship's animated Tiste Andii heads.
The Adunct's fleet travelled to Malaz City where Empress Laseen awaited Tavore in Mock's Hold. The Silanda joined Tavore's flagship, the Froth Wolf, to moor at the city pier while the rest of the fleet remained anchored in the harbour. The entire city seethed with magically induced anger against the 14th Army and the soldiers of the Silanda prepared to defend their ship from the mob after the Adjunct was escorted away. During the attack, Deadsmell helped Shortnose and the other wounded. Eventually, he had to take a break as he was "all used up." Later, when the unconscious Adjunct was brought before him, he threw up his hands claiming, "Hoods breath! She doesn't even need me. Damned Otataral—I never could get that, what it does..."
After the apparent death of Hood, Deadsmell gained access to Omtose Phellack, an elder Warren, which allowed him to heal Adjunct Tavore Paran after the Bonehunters' disastrous encounter with the K'Chain Nah'ruk. Other healers could not help her because of the presence of her otataral sword, but Deadsmell was able to use his newly accessible Warren. In doing so, he gained disturbing insight into the Adjunct.
Growing up, the boy who would become known as Deadsmell was described as "half-wild" and terrorized by his four older sisters. He often took refuge with Old Scez, the village dresser of the dead, essentially becoming his apprentice. When Deadsmell was seventeen, Scez was murdered by a jealous husband and the boy then took over his duties. At the age of nineteen, when the local priest of Fener, Hester Vill, suffered a stroke, it was Deadsmell who attended him in his final hours. Waiting for Fener to come and take the priest, the boy was surprised to witness not the Boar of War, but the Lord of the Slain, Hood, coming for the dead man. Hood then declared that Deadsmell could be one of "his own" and offered him the gift of "the end of fear". It was thus that the young man began his service to the God of Death.
Notes and referencesEdit
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 House of Chains, Chapter 22, US SFBC p.711
- ↑ The Bonehunters, Chapter 7, US SFBC p.278
- ↑ The Bonehunters, Chapter 6, US SFBC p.239
- ↑ The Bonehunters, Chapter 7, US SFBC p.278-279
- ↑ The Bonehunters, Chapter 7, US SFBC p.287-295
- ↑ The Bonehunters, Chapter 7, US SFBC p.301-303
- ↑ The Bonehunters, Chapter 7, US SFBC p.307-309/316
- ↑ The Bonehunters, Chapter 7, US SFBC p.368/370
- ↑ The Bonehunters, Chapter 7, US SFBC p.334-335/368/370
- ↑ The Bonehunters, Chapter 13, US SFBC p.531/551-552
- ↑ The Bonehunters, Chapter 18, US SFBC p.716
- ↑ The Bonehunters, Chapter 22, US SFBC p.834
- ↑ The Bonehunters, Chapter 22, US SFBC p.884
- ↑ The Bonehunters, Chapter 23, US SFBC p.910/939-940
- ↑ The Bonehunters, Chapter 23, US SFBC p.951
- ↑ 16.0 16.1 The Crippled God, Chapter 4, UK HB p.111
- ↑ Dust of Dreams, Chapter 9, US HC p.282-284