- "I fear that no one but myself will ever understand that my Master, Gavin Magnus, was not an evil man. I hate to call him misguided, or misunderstood - those words seem so cliché. He was a man who had lived too long, who had seen too much war and pain, who had witnessed the destruction of a world. After so much horror, wouldn't you want to put an end to it, too?"
- ―Solmyr ibn Wali Barad — Listen (file info)
A prominent character, Gavin Magnus was the Immortal King of the Enrothian nation of Bracada, ruling over the Wizards for almost a thousand years. Originally a wise and potent leader, he fell into despair following the Reckoning and turned his considerable abilities to the symbiotic enslavement of Axeoth, hoping to bring about a permanent peace.
The Immortal King
Born around the first or second century AS, Gavin Magnus was among the ranks of the Magi who served the Empire of Bracaduun during the rise of Tarnum, the Barbarian Tyrant of the Wasteland. In his youth, Magnus was present at the Battle of Steelhorn, where he was slain by one of Tarnum's Behemoths. Much to his apparent surprise, Magnus miraculously came back to life under uncertain circumstances.
According to Magnus, "I have spent much of my time ever since researching magic and the world around me - which is why I came here to learn about the Elemental Planes." After the fall of Bracaduun, Magnus personally pulled together the surviving Wizards and lead them into the southern, snow-capped mountains of Antagarich. Here, he founded the kingdom of Bracada, and became its Grand Vizier and Immortal King.
Around 750-800 AS, a truce imposed upon the four Elemental Lords came to an end. The Lords attacked Enroth, slowly segregating its elements to bring about its destruction. The Ancestors somehow arranged for Magnus to provide his old adversary, Tarnum (now the Immortal Hero) with a Tower on the outskirts of Bracada from which to prepare for the Lords' imminent invasion. Magnus sent his cousin, Barsolar, to "spy" on the Immortal Hero throughout his quest.
Instead of waiting on Enroth, Tarnum took the battle to the Elemental Planes by means of an Elemental Conflux. By the time he returned, thirty years had passed, and the four Lords had already begun to imbalance the elements. Tarnum was surprised to learn that Magnus was still alive, let alone that he hadn't aged in the time that had passed. Magnus sent a letter to Tarnum, announcing that he was coming with an army, secretly intending to garner knowledge about the Elemental Planes.
Search for the Ancients
Magnus explained to Tarnum his fate in the Battle of Steelhorn, and revealed that he had once even hated the Barbarian King - "but time has a way of making you forget. Now, if you can manage to defeat these Elemental Lords, I will consider us even - perhaps even brothers." Tarnum, however, had no interest in becoming Magnus's friend, unnerved by his cold arrogance. Before Magnus returned to Bracada, Tarnum made it clear that he was going to remove all knowledge related to the Conflux from the minds of all beings on Enroth with the aid of the Psychic elementals. This didn't seem to suit Magnus's interests - apparently, he had been looking forward to truly mastering the elements himself.
An extremely intelligent and talented Wizard, Magnus was also a collector of rare artifacts. During his rule, he amassed as broad a knowledge of Ancient devices as a native of Enroth could. Notably, Magnus somehow discovered a magic lamp around 900-1000 AS. He released the Genie within, who swore to Magnus "I shall serve you for as long as your feet walk this planet." The Genie was Solmyr ibn Wali Barad - who had not known that Magnus was immortal at the time. From that day forward, Solmyr served Gavin Magnus with unbreakable loyalty, but would come to regret his hasty vow.
For hundreds of years, Bracada had despised the Necromancers of Deyja (a corrupt, offshoot cult from their own kingdom). To aid in bringing them down, Gavin Magnus formed an alliance between Bracada and the armies of Queen Catherine in the Restoration Wars, between 1165 and 1168 AS. Bracada's role in the war consisted of quelling a border struggle between Tatalia and Krewlod, which had spilled over into Erathian territory, and aiding in the defense of the continent's east coast against the Dungeon Overlords of Nighon.
After the war, some of Magnus's Elven allies noticed a phenomenon in the shoals west of Brighton Point. An otherworldly glow emanated from the sea, and eight wetsuit-clad figures emerged from the ocean with black Control Cubes. Magnus ordered his troops to find the "sea-people" and bring them to Celeste. The four they returned with were Resurrectra, Sir Caneghem, Robert the Wise and Crag Hack - the "Good" Terrans.
The four Terrans became Magnus's temporary advisors in the Occult War against Deyja. Resurrectra, their leader, explained the nature of the Terran planetfall to Magnus and the Lords of Harmondale. Eventually, the Lords of Harmondale retrieved an artifact from the Terrans' spaceship - the Oscillation Overthruster. With the Overthruster, the four Terrans and the Lords of Harmondale reawakened one of the Ancients' Gates, passing through into Webstation Beta-5. Presumably, they have not been seen by Magnus since.
"I have come to realize, Solmyr, that I have been thinking too small. This Crystal Pendulum will finally bring a perfect peace to the world. Imagine that - order for all!"
—Magnus discusses his scheme with Solmyr.
The Reckoning took place in 1175, flooding the world of Enroth in fire. Magnus himself died in the blast, and Solmyr narrowly escaped by travelling to the Plane of Air at the last second. When he returned, he found Magnus whole again and conscious due to his immortality. Solmyr brought Magnus through one of the newly-spawned portals, and the two emerged in Axeoth. There, with Solmyr's aid, Magnus assumed his position as leader of the survivors of the kingdom of Bracada. Some years onward, Emilia Nighthaven established the similar kingdom of Great Arcan, and Magnus saw a chance to bolster his armies.
The Immortal King sent Solmyr to Emilia with an offer of his hand in marriage in exchange for the throne of Great Arcan. Emilia refused, and Solmyr attacked her forces. While Solmyr was away, Magnus enlisted the aid of Koelox, leader of Iranese's Red Dwarves, for use in a later plan. However, Emilia prevailed against Solmyr with the aid of Tharj Orcsplitter, an experienced Dwarven General. Solmyr returned to Magnus, ashamed at his own humiliating defeat, and Magnus charged Solmyr with locating the hidden Black Dragon Graveyard. After Solmyr succeeded, Magnus ordered the Red Dwarves to construct dragon golems using the bones and their own technologies.
However, the Red Dwarves disputed amongst each other, and used the Dragon Golems to destroy each other, wrecking New Bracada's capital in the process. Magnus, infuriated, changed his plan and ordered Solmyr to travel to a frozen wilderness to retrieve the Rainbow Crystal, an artifact of immense power. With the aid of a guide named Holman, Solmyr defeated the Crystal's defender, Old King Dreggar, and claimed it. Solmyr returned to Magnus with the Rainbow Crystal. There, Gavin used it to create a Crystal Pendulum capable of enslaving any sentient being to his will.
After witnessing so many centuries of war and strife, Magnus plotted to eliminate free will and thus prevent any further conflict from ever taking place. His death on Antagarich had unveiled a new, "insane" man, or so Solmyr thought when he abandoned Magnus's reckless plan, siding with Emilia. The Reckoning had changed Magnus, and Solmyr felt it best to believe that the kindly ruler of Bracada he had long known had perished along with the old world.
While Emilia and her six comrades searched for the Sword of the Gods with which to slay Magnus, Solmyr ventured into the underworld to seek information on the Crystal Pendulum. Meanwhile, Magnus continued to use the Pendulum to turn thousands of Great Arcan's citizens to his will. He took over Great Arcan's capital, Arcania, and stationed the Pendulum there. Though his power was great, he was not as invincible as he thought. Tharj journied alone to Arcania, hoping to buy Emilia and Solmyr time enough to defend themselves against the Pendulum and amass a large army to attack the capital. When Tharj reached Magnus, the Immortal King turned the Pendulum on him, sending the Dwarf to assassinate Emilia. Tharj reached Emilia's tent, but was killed by an eagle-eyed archer. Having located a Mind Shield, Solmyr and Emilia turned towards Arcania, hoping to restore justice and their people.
"Stand on the edge of a precipice with your toes poking into thin air. Feel the chill wind whip against your face, tug at your clothing, push at your shoulders. This is how close we came to losing. This is how close Magnus came to enslaving the minds of the entire world...forever!"
—Solmyr ibn Wali Barad
The last of Emilia's comrades who had not been enslaved - the hunter Kodge - defended the rebellious territories, while Reed, Emilia's ally, also participated in the attack on Magnus. Though an intensely formidable spellcaster, Gavin had relied on Solmyr to devise Bracada's actual battle strategies over the centuries, and now that expertise stood against him. In the siege of Arcania itself, the tide of battle was in Emilia's favour, and Magnus came as close to meeting his fate as was possible. The Mind Shield nullified the effects of the Crystal Pendulum, allowing the Arcanites to fight the Immortal King. His troops defeated, Magnus was felled by the Sword of the Gods in melee combat.
However, "If in the past the Sword of the Gods killed the God of Sacrifice, the weapon was still not powerful enough to put an end to the Immortal King. Emilia and I were discussing the best way to dispose of the Crystal Pendulum when Magnus groaned and lifted himself up from the ground, his wounds healed." Grabbing a fallen sword, Magnus screamed "Traitor!", dashed towards Solmyr and thrust the blade at his former servant's stomach. Emilia, stepping in front of Magnus, took the impact. "The blade exited her back and still had enough force to punch a few inches into my stomach as well."
With Emilia disposed of, Magnus aimed to shatter the Mind Shield and unleash the dormant Crystal Pendulum once again, turning defeat into victory. Solmyr responded quickly, summoning forth a Lightning Bolt spell and directing it at the Crystal Pendulum. The Rainbow Crystal shattered, taking Magnus' intertwined mind with it. "Magnus clutched at the sides of his head with both hands and fell to his knees, shrieking like a banshee experiencing a hundred thousand tortures at once."
Emilia barely survived, and those Magnus had enslaved were restored with the Crystal's destruction, their free will and minds returned. Gavin Magnus, still immortal but now rendered as mindless as those whose will he had taken, was imprisoned in Arkania, with Solmyr as his overseer. "He stares out the window without seeing, without even knowing where or who he is." Gavin Magnus, the Immortal King, was left "catatonic - for all eternity."
Magnus appears in Heroes Chronicles: Masters of the Elements, Might and Magic VII: For Blood and Honor, Heroes of Might and Magic IV and was mentioned in Heroes of Might and Magic III: The Restoration of Erathia.
|Academy heroes in Heroes of Might and Magic IV|
|Alem · Annavanta · Aycora · Danika · Davius · Fafner · Fynelda · Grum · Hally · Hedegraus · Jubal · Iona · Merrox · Neela · Nobblenot · Oaryn · Paulus · Piquedram · Petula · Rissa · Segwen · Sharah · Teddor · Tharj · Ufretin · Verno|
|Aenain · Aine · Astral · Brendemar · Bohb · Brissa · Calyphona · Cyra · Daremyth · Emilia Nighthaven · Gavin Magnus · Genevieve Seymour · Grindan · Grunkie · Gurvilin · Malcom · Melody · Minasli · Mudgeon · Mysterio the Magnificent · Olivaster · Pherlon · Qubar · Raven · Redwara · Solmyr ibn Wali Barad · Suzieque · Sylas Zanj · Tina · Theodorus · Urnaka|