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"Break their ranks, and ride them down without mercy. Crush the living. Feast on their terror." - HecarimSquare Hecarim

Hecarim is a spectral fusion of man and beast, cursed to ride down the souls of the living for all eternity. When the Blessed Isles fell into shadow, this proud knight was undone by the destructive energies of the Ruination, along with all his cavalry and their mounts. Now, whenever the Black Mist reaches out across Runeterra, he leads their devastating charge, reveling in the slaughter and crushing foes beneath his armored hooves.

Shadow of War

Born into an empire long since gone to dust and forgotten, Hecarim was a lieutenant of the Iron Order—a brotherhood sworn to defend their king’s lands.

As Hecarim won victory after victory from the back of his mighty warhorse, the commander of the Iron Order saw in him a potential successor… but also a growing darkness. His obsessive hunger for glory was eroding his honor, and over time the knight-commander came to realize this young lieutenant must never lead them.

When he was told this, Hecarim was furious. Even so, he bit back his anger, and continued in his duties.

When they next rode to war, the commander found himself surrounded by enemies, and cut off from his fellow knights. Hecarim, seeing his chance, turned away and left him to die. At battle’s end, the Iron Order, oblivious to what Hecarim had done, knelt on the bloody ground and swore allegiance to him.

Hecarim rode to the capital to take his formal oaths, and met with KalistaSquare Kalista, the king’s most trusted general. She recognized his prowess and leadership, and when the queen was wounded by an assassin’s poisoned blade, Kalista was comforted to know the Iron Order would remain with the king while she sought a cure.

Gripped by paranoia, and seeing new threats in every shadow, the king raged at those he believed were trying to separate him from his dying wife, and dispatched Hecarim to quell dissent throughout the kingdom. The Iron Order earned a dreadful reputation as ruthless enforcers of the king’s will. Towns and villages burned. Hundreds were put to the sword.

With grim inevitability, when the queen died, Hecarim chose to sour the king’s grief into hatred, seeking sanction to lead the Iron Order into foreign lands. He would avenge her death, while earning yet more dark renown for himself.

But before they could ride out, Kalista returned. She had found what she sought upon the distant Blessed Isles—and yet it was now too late. The king would not believe this, and had Kalista imprisoned as a traitor. Intrigued by what he had heard, Hecarim visited her cell, and they spoke of the pale mists that protected the islands from all invaders… and also of the inhabitants’ immense wealth, including the legendary Waters of Life.

Knowing only Kalista could lead them there, Hecarim eventually persuaded her to guide the king’s fleet through the veil that concealed the Blessed Isles from mortal sight.

They landed at the city of Helia with the queen’s body in solemn procession. The Iron Order led the way, only to be met by the city’s masters, who now refused to help. Enraged, the king ordered Kalista to kill them, but she refused, and Hecarim smiled as he made the decision that would damn him for eternity. He drove a spear through Kalista’s back, and ordered his knights to ransack the city, looting its vaults of arcane treasures.

Amid the chaos, a ThreshSquare lowly custodian agreed to grant the king access to the Waters of Life—but not even this could distract Hecarim from the revelry of bloodshed, and so it was that the Ruination of the Blessed Isles would take him almost completely by surprise.

A blastwave of magical force tore across Helia, shattering every last building and leaving the fragments suspended in searing un-light. In its wake came the Black Mist, a billowing hurricane that dragged every living creature it touched into its shrieking, roiling embrace. Hecarim tried to rally the Iron Order, hoping to make it back to their ships, but the mist claimed them one by one as they fled.

Alone, and defiant to the end, the knight-commander was taken by the shadows. He and his mighty steed were fused into a monstrous, spectral abomination that reflected the darkness in Hecarim’s heart—a brazen creature of fury and spite, at one with the Black Mist and yet utterly enslaved by it.

Bound forevermore to these Shadow Isles, Hecarim has spent centuries in a sinister mockery of his former life, cursed to patrol the nightmarish lands he once intended to conquer. Whenever the Black Mist reaches out beyond their shores, he and the otherworldly host of the Iron Order ride out to slaughter the living, in memory of glories long passed.

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References

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