"I've had worse than you, Teblor, in my day. Uglier and bigger and meaner. Of course, they're mostly all dead, now."
―Keeper, upon meeting Karsa Orlong[src]

The man known as Keeper lived isolated in a tower on the shore of the Otataral Sea in Seven Cities. The tower was located on a peninsula covered by the A'rath Forest. The nearest city was Ehrlitan, fifteen days on foot to the west. Keeper was the Daru translation of his local Ehrlii name of Ba'ienrock.[1]

Keeper was a huge man with almost black skin indicating a Napan origin. His lower face was covered by a thick, grey-shot beard and he had huge muscles with no fat. He was dressed in a thick, rusty mail vest and a belted loincloth of a colourless material. His hat seemed to have been made out of the remnant of a hood but carried no weapons.[2]

Keeper lived in a squat, misshapen, flat-roofed tower made out of limestone fossils which had a triangular, shuttered window about three quarters up on the seaward side. A narrow path led up from the beach to the base of the tower, then the lime dust trail led around it, past a jumble of limestone boulders to the front of the structure. There the trail forked with one path leading to the entrance of the tower and the other to a raised coastal road with the forest visible beyond it. A huge skull formed the lintel of the low doorway. Keeper, a keen paleontologist, had hollowed out the inside of the tower to accommodate the fossil of a huge, dinosaur like creature which he was putting together. The skeleton was held up by a framework of poles, crossbeams and ropes. The floor was covered in stone chippings and there was a brick-lined fireplace beneath the scaffold. There was also a small section of scaffold just below the triangular window.[3]

The wreck of a fishing boat was sitting on the beach above the high water mark.[4]

There was a natural spring near-by.[5]

Keeper possessed a three-legged stool.[6]

In House of ChainsEdit

Slug Fest by Shadaan

Interpretation of Keeper facing Karsa by Dolmen aka Shadaan

Karsa Orlong and Torvald Nom came across Keeper's tower in the dead of night. Karsa described the fossils of which the tower was build as drawings, which made Keeper laugh. He invited them in for tea. Asked about his name, he told them that in the outside world he had died long ago and he wanted to keep it that way. He told them to call him either by his local name or its translation.[7]

When Torvald observed that he had obviously seen a fair bit of the world, Keeper discouraged any further delving into his past.[8]

He told them that they would have to earn their keep by helping him dismantle the roof as he needed more space for the fossil which had turned out to be far larger than he had anticipated when he build his tower. Karsa refused, saying that putting together old bones was pointless and Keeper was wasting his life with such a stupid task. In response, Keeper floored Karsa with a single punch to his lower ribs on the right hand side which knocked the Teblor unconscious. When Karsa awoke, it was light and the other two had already been working on the roof for some time. Keeper was amazed that Karsa was up as he knew that his punch had broken ribs as well as bones in his own hand. Not wanting to show weakness, Karsa helped with some of the dismantling. Keeper told them that he had always had a temper and had never been good at taking insults.[9]

Keeper told Torvald that staying with Karsa was not safe as the Teblor was dragging a thousand invisible chains behind him and whatever was on the ends of each one of them was filled with venom.[10]

He provided Karsa and Torvald with provisions when they were leaving. Amongst other, he gave them a small bag of coins, mostly silver jakatas but also some high denomination local coins. Before Torvald could say anything, Keeper waved aside any protests saying that he had emptied half of Aren's treasury on the night before he drowned.[11]

Keeper's true identity was not confirmed until a later book.

Spoiler Alert

Stop here if you do not want to learn of a potential alias or alternative identity for Keeper
which is not yet disclosed in the story and/or might be information from another Malazan book/series.

Do not hover over the following link to avoid mouseover spoiler.

If you wish to proceed to the character's page containing a spoiler, click here.

Notes and referencesEdit

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.