The Children of Apep are a society of lizard people who thrive in the southern desert regions. They consist of three principal races: Agama, agile and quick witted; Mastix, muscular and prone to aggression; and the revered Snake Warriors, the closest cousins to Apep – the Snake God of all the tribes.
The intelligence of the lizard tribes was coaxed into prominence by the ministrations of an ancient race of Mage lizards, the Apophis, who arrived in the desert lands at the time of the earliest recorded history. Although not native to the lands, the Apophis adopted the customs of the desert tribes, encouraging their worship of Apep, and the practice of The Silence: an exclusively psychic form of communication.
There are three army lists for the Children of Apep. Desert Raiders where the focus is on mobility and speed. The Desert Kingdom representing the homeland defence armies. Finally the Royal Army which is the Children of Apep taking the war to the enemy
Commander Jenkins bent down over the track, it was light, hardly more than an indentation in the hard pack sand of the windward side of the dune, but the depth of its significance was hugely out of proportion to its physical presence, And that depth of meaning, in turn, paled to insignificance compared to the depth of trouble his company was now in. “Oolat, you were right” Jenkins said, sinking down to sit beside the marking, “and damn it I fear you were right about its meaning” Jenkins cursed the heat as he adjusted the sweat sodden rag wound about his head, a poor imitation of the elegant garb of the local tribes. An affectation that had lost him the respect of many of the senior officers, but damn them to hell too, they were not the ones out in the dunes playing cat a mouse with the silent menace. He withdrew two items from the inner pocket of his dress uniform jacket, passing the larger one, a folded piece of parchment
to the local tracker. “Take this to command won’t you now, do that and kick up a fuss until someone reads it, then I guess you had better make yourself scarce.” Oolat nodded gravely, then proffered his hand. Jenkins later reflected that although the shake was still awkward, it had been a fine sign of respect. The second item he had produced from the inner pocket was a leather pouch, containing a tiny intricate pipe, and an even smaller supply of pipe weed, the last toke Jenkins had of the supply he had brought half way around the world. By the time the pikemen had formed up, in good but customarily loud order – commands shouted with sufficient gusto to echo off the backsides of the dunes
Jenkins had finished his smoke, and its memory was merely a dry savour. “Shall we bring the flat Bows to the front sir?” the junior from fifth asked. Jenkins searched his memory in vain for the mans name, another failed promise to himself, he never was going to know the names of all under his command, not even the first rank under his
command. This had been a bloody wasteful pointless foray. “No, have them formed up facing back down the dune, ready to fire” Jenkins said, loudly enough to be heard, but at a volume that was like a whisper compared with the bellowed orders of the other commanders. “Sir, I don’t understand, I thought the enemy were on the far side of the
dune…” “Don’t lecture me on tactics boy, and don’t second guess my orders, and whilst you are at it you may want to take a look up from your bloody boots once in a while” Jenkins stood up, dusting the sand from the seat of his scarlet trousers as the junior turned on the spot the first action one under his command had managed to do silently
today. The muttered gasps from the company told Jenkins that their predicament had finally sunk in with the larger part of the company. Arrayed in blue and white splendour, on the faces of the dunes to the south west and east, was the largest gathering of the Warrior Lizard people Jenkins had seen. Their number had, up until now, only been hinted at by the people of the villages they had passed through. Hints and rumours written off as exaggeration by senior command. He couldn’t begrudge the nameless junior for his surprise, the lizards of Apep’s ability to move silently could not be
understood until it was experienced. “Your local man, you sent him off to get support” the junior asked hopefully. Jenkins weighed the moral of his men with the morality of lying, and decided to favour the former. “Yes, we should expect relief within the hour” he lied.