This ancient book is not of exceptional construction, made of braxat hide and thick, leather-like pages of unknown origin. It has a nondescript look, being no larger than a tome found in any sorcerer-king’s library. It definitely shows its age.
It is thought by some dwarves that the Book of the Kemalok Kings stolen by Borys servants is actually a copy of the original, which has likely turned to dust over the centuries, though no one knows for sure if this is the case. The book definitely shows its age, and if returned to the dwarves it would likely be re-copied in an effort to preserve the knowledge contained within.
At the height of the Green Age, the dwarves of Athas were among the most powerful races of the Tablelands. From their majestic city of Kemalok, the dwarves grew strong and prosperous in the years prior to the coming of Rajaat and his evil followers. It was during this peaceful time the writings of the Book of Kemalok Kings were begun.
A personal journal written by the king of the dwarven people, the book is a combination of historical events and vital insight into the dwarven race. In a time when historical documents were nearly nonexistent, the Book of Kemalok Kings was one of the few chronicles of Athas to survive the ravages of the Cleansing Wars. No single item on Athas contains as much rare history than this dwarven relic.
Following the death of Rkard, the last of the dwarven kings, at the hands of Borys of Ebe two millennia ago, the fallen monarch was placed in his sacred crypt along with the Book of Kemalok Kings. At that time, it was decided that until the threat of the sorcerer- kings on Athas was ended, no monarch would rule the dwarven race since he would likely be threatened by the Champions of Rajaat. Should knowledge from the book ever be required, the elder guardians of Kemalok would consult the ancient writings.
Like many other races following the Cleansing Wars, the dwarves of Athas lost considerable knowledge, history, and tradition to the harsh conditions of the world.
Among these was the ability to translate the Book of Kemalok Kings. For nearly a millennium, the relic gathered dust in the tomb of Rkard, its knowledge useless to those it was created to help.
The dwarf Er’Stali worked in the library of the sorcerer-king Hamanu, which that allowed him to learn parts of their ancient written language. With this knowledge, he could translate portions of the Book of Kemalok Kings and learn more of the ancient language. The Urikite was sincere in his intentions and became the first non-dwarf ever to set eyes on the age-old text.
Unfortunately, Er’Stali studied the book for only a short time before it was stolen by a psionicist named Maetan, who took the book to Urik. At the same time, Rikus and his Tyrian army were mobilizing to engage the forces of King Hamanu approaching the newly freed city-state.
While in Kled, the dwarves told Rikus of the Book of Kemalok Kings and asked him to recover it. Rikus agreed, and in return, he was granted the title of a Knight of Kemalok and was given two artifacts to help him in his quest: the Belt of Kings and the Scourge of Rkard. However, on his way to meet the approaching army Rikus was attacked by a dozen wraiths who were former followers of Borys of Ebe.
Recognizing Rikus as a Knight of Kemalok, along with his possession the Scourge, the wraiths agreed not to kill Rikus if he brought them the Book of Kings so they could use information within to find their former master.
Spells placed on Rikus by the vile wraiths forced him to complete this task, and in the end, the wraiths took possession of the dwarven relic.
Despite the loss of the Book of Kings, the learned Er’Stali was able to transcribe what he had read, preserving a portion of the ancient work.
Er’Stali died nine years later in Kled, and it is unknown how much of the text was copied. Also unknown is the location of the Book of Kemalok Kings since the wraiths took possession of it. The crypt containing the undead warriors has since been vacated, and the location of the book is unknown. Since undead and shadow creatures were altered during Rajaat’s brief release from the Hollow, it is possible the relic may now reside on one of Athas’ mysterious dimensions: either the Black or the Gray.
Study of the tome greatly increases the reader's knowledge of history, and wisdom about the world.
Legends of Athas, companion book to Dark Sun 3.