Malazan Wiki
Malazan Wiki

Kimloc was a Tanno Spiritwalker[1] living in Ehrlitan. He was described as "an old man" with amber eyes "dressed in a wrinkled orange robe. The deep, rich ochre of his skin was set off by a shock of white hair".[2] His laughter sounded like blowing sand.

Kimloc lived in a gardened residence hidden within a neighbourhood of minor merchants and craftsmen. One wall of his abode was constructed entirely of glass, and was entered through a door of linen stretched over an iron frame. Inside was a wall of marble, candled alcoves, and solid wood doors. Other residents included his granddaughters (including Selal), a nurse, a House Healer, and Captain Turqa and the house guard.[3]

In Deadhouse Gates[]

Fiddler found his way to Kimloc's home when he rescued two of his grandchildren from a hunchbacked pimp. Kimloc invited the renegade Malazan to a meal and rewarded him with a conch shell invested with Tano songs of power. The shell would provide Fiddler with protection while travelling the wastes of the Pan'potsun Odhan. He also warned of the coming convergence known as the Path of Hands.

Spoiler warning: The following section contains significant plot details about Kimloc.

Kimloc proposed to create a song for the Bridgeburners ensuring their ultimate ascension. To craft his song, he simply needed to touch Fiddler to glean the knowledge he needed, but the sapper recoiled from the Spiritwalker's grasp.[4]

In House of Chains[]

It later became apparent that Kimloc had indeed made contact and gained the knowledge he sought.[5] At the Battle of Raraku, Quick Ben noted that the song caused the Bridgeburners to ascend and summoned any army of ghosts to defeat Korbolo Dom's Dogslayers.[6]

Significant plot details end here.


Kimloc had been responsible for the Tano Holy City Karakarang. Although the Spiritwalker claimed to possess the power to destroy the Malazan invaders utterly, he chose to instead surrender the city to High Fist Dujek Onearm when the Empire appeared undaunted. Valuing life above all things, he saw little benefit to the deaths of thousands. He also feared a massacre similar to the one inflicted by the Empire's T'lan Imass at Aren. Afterwards, he was known as a man who could not keep his word and his name was synonymous with empty threats. This capitulation may have explained why his home was hidden and why Seven Cities native Kalam Mekhar sought his death.[7] Fiddler noted that while Tanno monks give up their lives for peace, Kimloc gave his honour.[8] A book entitled The Apocryphal Teachings of Tanno Spiritwalker Kimloc implied that Kimloc ultimately spent a decade living in Ehrlitan.[9]


"Power has voice, and that voice is the Song of the Tanno Spiritwalker."
"There is something profoundly cynical, my friends, in the notion of paradise after death. The lure is evasion. The promise is excusative. One need not accept responsibility for the world as it is, and by extension, one need do nothing about it. To strive for change, for true goodness in this mortal world, one must acknowledge and accept, within one’s own soul, that this mortal reality has purpose in itself, that its greatest value is not for us, but for our children and their children. To view life as but a quick passage along a foul, tortured path – made foul and tortured by our own indifference – is to excuse all manner of misery and depravity, and to exact cruel punishment upon the innocent lives to come.
    I defy this notion of paradise beyond the gates of bone. If the soul truly survives the passage, then it behooves us – each of us, my friends – to nurture a faith in similitude: what awaits us is a reflection of what we leave behind, and in the squandering of our mortal existence, we surrender the opportunity to learn the ways of goodness, the practice of sympathy, empathy, compassion and healing – all passed by in our rush to arrive at a place of glory and beauty, a place we did not earn, and most certainly do not deserve.
The Apocryphal Teachings of Tanno Spiritwalker Kimloc[src]
"A Book of Prophecy opens the door. You need a second book to close it."
―Tanno Spiritwalker Kimloc[src]

Notes and references[]