Volrath is a being that comes from the card game .
Evincarof Rath and arch-enemy of Gerrard Capashen. He was featured in the sets , , , Mercadian Masques, , and .
Volrath was named Vuel upon birth as son of
Sidar Kondo, within a North Jamuraan warclan. When the young Gerrard Capashen was accepted into his family, Vuel initially expressed contempt, but they later became good friends.
One of the rites of passage for Vuel was to face the challenge of climbing a harsh, sizable, plateau. His trial was doomed to fail, as Starke "il"-Vec added poison to the ritual paintings applied to his body. Gerrard chose to save his life, but Vuel was cast out of his clan as a failure, with even his father rejecting him. Volrath therefore resented Gerrard for not simply letting him die.
As he wandered out alone in despair, Starke comforted him and whetted his ego and need for revenge. Vuel rallied other barbarians from surrounding to tribes to attack his former clan. This led to the deaths of many of Vuel's people, including his father. During this time, Vuel managed to deactivate
Karn, and steal the " Legacy" artifacts. However, Gerrard was nowhere to be found.
Starke now saw Vuel fit for the next step in his ascension, and promised Vuel a whole world to command. Vuel was eager to prove himself and stepped through Starke's portal, onto the valley of Rath. Shortly after arriving he was transported to
Phyrexiawhere Yawgmothtrained him, mutilated him, and gave him all of Rath to command.That day, Vuel was dead, and Volrath, was born.
Note: When Time Spiral was still in its early stages Vuel was a concept card.Instead of Vuel, Endrek Sahr, Master Breeder was the second Legendary Black creature in the Time Spiral set.
Volrath, Evincar of Rath
One of Volrath's first act on Rath was to claim ownership. He met and challenged the current envicar, taking the throne of the abandoned stronghold, and becoming the sixth Evincar of Rath.
Volrath soon enslaved the Dal, Kor, and Vec tribes, and began "experimenting" on them. He did some very creative things with his experiments, most notably he grafted the
Phyrexian control spines onto hundreds of people, hoping to be able to control them. Unfortunately, only one person survived the procedure: Greven "il"-Vec (meaning Greven, of the Vec tribe), who was then enhanced in many other ways as to grant him strength of superhuman levels. Greven became Volrath's second in command, though after years of torment and humiliation Greven had grown to despise Volrath.
Volrath blamed Starke for all he had suffered, for being cast out of his clan, for being scarred by Yawgmoth, etc. He captured Starke's daughter, Takara "en"-Dal, and soon after Sisay, friend of
Gerrard, and Captain of "Weatherlight", after he ordered Starke to bring her to him.As predicted, Gerrard came to rescue Sisay aboard the "Weatherlight", but was quickly shot down by Volrath's own flagship, "Predator", under the command of Greven. Greven returned with the remaining "Legacy" artifact, "Weatherlight".Volrath at first was overjoyed, with the Legacy Artifacts he could slay Yawgmoth himself and use Phyrexian hordes to Dominate both Phyrexia and Dominaria. Then Volrath learned that Gerrard was only 'presumed' dead, after Greven saw him fall off "Weatherlight". Volrath "knew" that Gerrard was still alive and felt like he'd been lied to. As punishment he tortured Greven far more violently than ever before.
Tahngarth of the Talruum mountains was "Weatherlight's" first mate, and was captured by Greven. And perhaps out of the goodness in his heart, Volrath had his Phyrexian priests horrifically alter Tahngarth to a form worthy of his new role as Greven's first mate aboard the "Predator". Also aboard "Weatherlight" was Vuel's old protector,
Karn. Karn was a golem created by Urza to watch over Gerrard, and was also a piece of "Legacy" himself. Volrath set up an elaborate torture device specifically for Karn.
Without hesitation a second rescue attempt was made by Gerrard. This time he brought Starke, Mirri (Gerrard’s cat warrior friend), and Crovax (an Urborgan noble) along with him.Gerrards band infiltrated the Stronghold and just as they'd freed Karn and Tahngarth, Volrath’s angel Selenia arrived and forced the party to disassemble. Tahngarth and Karn took the wounded Mirri and Crovax back to "Weatherlight" while Starke and Gerrard ventured further.When Gerrard and Starke entered the Dream Halls they found Takara en-Dal hiding behind Sisay with Volrath at their side. In reality, Volrath had a shapeshifter minion take his form, whilst Volrath himself shapeshifted into the form of Takara. All the while Sisay was under Volrath's mind control.
Before the battle had gone on very long, Tahngarth barged in and smashed the shapeshifter (in Volrath's form) into a column. By this time the spell on Sisay had been weakened enough for Gerrard to convert her back to her old self. Volrath's shapeshifter, weakened, reverted to its normal form. The party made a false realization and, thinking Volrath defeated, fled. The real Volrath, disguised as Takara, went with them.
As they neared "Weatherlight" it became apparent that Crovax had become a vampire after slaying the dark angel Selenia and was now attempting to convert Mirri. With Greven and "Predator" looming near, Gerrard made the painful decision to leave Mirri behind in order to escape.
The crew made haste, escaping through a portal and crash landing in Mercadia City. They were shortly robbed of "Weatherlight" by local water sorcerers. Gerrard and Sisay went to seek the "Weatherlight". Volrath, still in the form of Takara, killed Starke. When Sisay and Gerrard returned and found Starke dead, they caught on to Volrath's disguise and fought. Volrath, despite his abilities, lost the battle. With Volrath seemingly out of the picture Gerrard and Sisay ran to "Weatherlight" and made a hasty retreat through the Phyrexian caves.
With Volrath absent for so long, it seemed to most on Rath that he would never return. With no other option, the Phyrexian Inner Circle arranged a contest to decide the new Evincar of Rath. Before Volrath arrived; the only two contestants were the now very powerful vampire Crovax and the lesser wizard Ertai, both abandoned long ago by the "Weatherlight" crew.Just as Crovax was to be crowned Evincar, Greven enters and announces Volrath. Everyone shook with fear, and all the crowd and soldiers bowed before him. Crovax, however, was unconvinced of his power. The Phyrexian ambassador, Belbe, who was sent by Yawgmoth himself, declared the challenge and the battle for Evincar began.
Volrath was far more powerful than Crovax, but the wizard Ertai intervened during the battle, allowing Crovax to be victorious. He lost all the power being an Evincar granted him, he lost his throne, and he lost his victory over Gerrard. Volrath is dragged into his own dungeon, and is executed via disintegration by flowstones, injected and commanded by Ertai.
Volrath is a cruel, ruthless leader whose arrogance is offset only by his great intelligence. When punishing prisoners, Volrath prefers to use methods that damage his captives psychologically. He deformed the proud minotaur Tahngarth with a magical ray, and placed the pacifist golem Karn in a room full of moggs, with a shifting floor which ensured that the golem's very existence lead to the deaths of others, as moggs would be crushed beneath his weight.
Volrath is a master shapeshifter, with incredible control over his body's cellular structure (in one of the books, he is able to make stone crumble by insinuating his flesh into it). He is also a skilled geneticist and necromancer, whose experiments with both living and dead subjects have created countless monstrosities and a number of new species on Rath.
When Volrath was personified on a 2nd series Vanguard card, Mortuary, he was given the ability "Whenever any of your creatures is put into your graveyard from play, you may put that creature on top of your library." His ability to grow in strength at the cost of others was also reflected on his own card, Volrath the Fallen, which was printed in the expansion.
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