|Occupation||Ruler of Vesh|
Au Vam is a writer, cultural icon, and the king of Vesh. As Pankrator, Vam commands the legendary Middle Army, making him Meti's former commanding officer. Famous for his aphorisms, he is attributed with writing Fifteen Ways of Ruling in DE 1559.
Fifteen Ways of Ruling
Fifteen Ways of Ruling is a work of literature attributed to Au Vam. Written in DE 1559, it contains details about the qualities needed for kingship.
- Let the ruling king always keep a clown about him and on his council, and let the fool babble on what he like, and relentless mock the king and all his grand and royal plans and designs at the idiot's discretion. For there is no greater councilor than one who will clearly speak truth to folly.
- “The angel is a mighty judge, for his gavel is a fist of stone encasing a terrible and unforgiving fire. A corpse-ocean of criminals have been fed to that flame, yet oceans more shall never quell its unrelenting hunger.”
-15 Ways of Ruling Wielder of Names 3-58
- It is a fool that mistakes a princess for a weakling, for she carries the tower in her heart, and upon that chthonic root dark and terrible edifices may grow.
- Do you understand the true power of a sovereign? A raw man must kill with his bare hands. The battered warrior, a weapon. The commander, his bellowing voice, the conspirator, a whispered word. But all these pale compared to kingship. A true sovereign need not flex a single muscle in his body, and a hundred men die. A true sovereign may murder without a single impulse, or even intent, sight, breath, or even though of his murder. He is an idiot indifferent to his own violence. He has sublimed the act of obliteration.
That is the meaning of kingship.
- Hastet Om. A man who picks his wives as though selecting beautiful flowers from a field. And he rips their petals off just as fast.
- “Do not surround yourself with splendor. Spend your treasury sparingly. Stock the halls of your holdfast with sturdy and plain men, and do not adorn your walls. Abhor gold. If you sit next to the sun too long, you’re likely to go blind.” -Au Vam, 15 Ways of Ruling Wielder of Names 4-61
- “Dread those with the terrible star on their brow, for they are my kin. They trade in flesh, smoke, and star-knowledge. Their reins of power are made of coursing flame, and their chariot wheels trample the world in any direction they wish. When you see them you will know there are many ways to fill a man with death, and the walls of the world will feel thin to you indeed.” -Au Vam, Pankrator of Vesh, ruler of the Yellow City KSBD 5-86
- "One man's fortress is another's prison." - Au Vam Seeker of Thrones 6-62
- “The cruelest of weapons aim not to kill, but to preserve life, in the most hideous and torturous ways imaginable.” -Au Vam Seeker of Thrones 7-75
- “Many great men ask me why I keep such numerous, rare, and expensive flowers in my palace. This is to warn me of the habits of weak kings. A king should always be attentive to his flowers, and keep a great number of them. If he does not pay his servants enough to take care of them, they will pluck some in secret, and sell them in the market. If his servants do not care enough for their master or their service, they will willfully neglect his flowers, and they will die. If he forces his servants to water the flowers out of fear, the delicate flowers will be overwatered and they will die. If he keeps lavish flowers, he must educate his servants sufficiently to take care of them, or they will die. A king with wilted flowers, or no flowers at all is not worth trusting. This is the first measure I take of my rival lords.” – Au Vam, Pankrator of Vesh, the Yellow City King of Swords 4-39
- “From this hour forward the gates of the city will be barred to my kin. Do not underestimate them. Do not commune with them. Do not give them offerings, or give them bread or Ajash if they visit you disguised. Many of them have a sweet countenance and a honeyed tongue. They will say their wish is to be a teacher of men, to spread messages of peace. In an earlier age, this was true. Now dogs and worse have crept into their ranks. Madness has consumed them. Their only passion now is a lust for blood and power.” -Proclamation of Au Vam King of Swords 6-57
- “The ruling king must know the lay of his law as the lines on the back of his thumb. He must know it like a path he walks every day, like the house he grew up in. It is a beast he must nurture without fear of being consumed by it, as he surely will be some day if he is not attentive.” – Au Vam King of Swords 10-131
- “Total victory is not found in the final sword blow. To perfect victory you cannot continue to spill the blood of a fallen foe, which only shows your insecurities to your many enemies. Instead, you must nurse your foe back to health, dress, and feed him, but not so much that he regains his strength. You must take away every aspect of him which originally seemed fierce and indestructible. In every aspect you must diminish and crush his spirit with affection, all the while maintaining your grip on his sword arm. In this way, kindness is the greatest cruelty.” -Au Vam King of Swords 10-142
- “Chief among the concerns of any code of punishment is that it is important for the executed to have dignity. A man’s death must be treated with reverence and not treated at some soiled thing. It therefore transforms from a wrongdoing into a spectacle.”
– Au Vam, Pankrator of Vesh King of Swords 10-145
“The king Au Vam was known for keeping a peculiar member of his council – a low-born scullion, who would serve tea for his grand war parties. This country maid kept the company of ten of the most powerful generals in the Yellow City, and was privy to their most tenebrous plans, yet was scarcely sixteen summers of age and educated not a whit.
Her purpose was thus: if the grand designs and monolithic schemes of any of these mighty and august men could not pass the base judgement of a girl of sixteen summers, they were immediately discarded.
Thus did Au Vam win nearly all of his battles.”-Histories of the Yellow City, Vol. 32, paragraph 3 (A.S.C. 189)