An Introduction to Mahid
House Mirkul was the last House of Birtule to claim leadership before House Tiduun rose to power. They have traditionally been a pious order, and until their recent period of leadership a peaceful one, by Mahidan standards. At a time when war with Ungim had ravaged the Imigoru and even largely starved much of Birtule proper, Mirkulan spies discovered that the enemy planned to poison the great Canal itself, probably rendering the city uninhabitable for generations. The entire clan, many whom had never killed and some whom had never even borne weapons, took up arms and called the Houses, squabbling and leaderless even in the face of war, to defend their home and prevent this grave offense to Elanta... an offense for which even death was far too small a punishment.
The combined might of the Houses, in their first well-orchestrated operation since the beginning of hostilities from Ungim, rode out from the besieged terrace of Birtule, and to the confusion and eventual horror of the Ungimi attackers refused to engage their main force, instead sweeping around their flanks, seizing the barrels of potent poison and any soldiers or adjuncts they could lay hands on before retreating again through another gate.
Unspeakable, gruesome things were done to those men in full view of their fellows, just out of bowshot up on the Birtulan platform, but Ungim is nothing if not stubborn. It was months before the now organized House Guards finally drove them back, at great cost of lives.
No one knows what happened to the barrels of vile poison, rumored to be some of the most toxic stuff ever seen by Northmen.
After this final success, and with Birtule reduced to nearly one tenth its original population, Mirkul established a firm theocracy, determined that the city had been spared not just by the valor of her warriors, but by the grace of Elanta. Birtule flourished, her resources outstripping her population for once, and over the next forty years she grew into her present glorious self, which according to those old enough to remember surpasses even her state before the war.
During this time, however, the diligent rule of Mirkul turned strict, and then oppressive… or perhaps it was the needs of Birtule changing. In any case, those of other religions came to resent the rule of a House which recognized and made provisions for only one, as the church of Elanta demands. Eventually they fell to disfavor, and House Tiduun took their place as the most respected and de facto leader of the Houses of Birtule.