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Varpar Hogar (Planar / male tiefling / wizard 5 (Transmuter) / Factor of the Xaositects / N)
Many factors in the Cage are called barmy. Perhaps none deserves to be called it more than Varpar Hogar; the very fact that he's a high-up of the Xaositects should tell a blood that much. Thing is, the message he brings might sound addled in the extreme, but it's proven to be more successful than most anything else that's ever been dreamed up. Is the multiverse itself barmy? According to Varpar, that'd be the case.
Unlike so many of the Xaositects, Varpar's actually completely sane. His arguments are carefully though out; the product of a logical and reasonable mind. See, this blood used to be high in the Fraternity of Order, until they threw him out. His theories were too crazy for them, they said. So, going with his very philosophy, he threw in with the Xaositects. And what's more; that tactic's worked just like he knew it would. Varpar's ideas are now more popular with the Guvners than he ever was when he was in their ranks. Confused? You'll have to know more about his beliefs to figure it out...
The secret's in opposites. A long time ago, this tiefling cutter Varpar noticed that whatever he did, the opposite always happened in the end. He got married to someone he loved; his life turns to a living nightmare. An acrimonious split later; he's happier than ever before. His research as a Guvner takes him so close to an Axiom that it's practically eating out of his hand; he's thrown out of the faction. He becomes an enemy of order and law; the Guvners are begging for him to come back and tell them his darks.
It's a barmy old world all right.
Varpar's philosophy's so simple that you think you've missed it when you see it: Do the opposite of what you intend. That's it. No fancy words (those come when you have to explain to your friend why you've just betrayed them). 'Course, they'll see the benefits in the long term; it's just that most cutters aren't prepared to wait that long.
Every mathematician knows that for every action, there's an equal and opposite reaction. There's no point fighting it, berk, it's pretty much an Axiom itself. Varpar realised that long ago.
What does this mean? Say a man wants to make a fortune. He sets up a business, begins to trade, works his way into the trust of the big-timers. He might even be successful for a while. Then what happens? One lousy mistake and it all comes crashing down around his ears! See, that berk forgot that for all his effort, there's be an equal and opposing effort to make him loose all the money he'd worked so hard for!
- Famous saying of the
as he welcomes cutters to the "half price night" at his brothel
Here's the clever part. Suppose the same blood subscribed to Varpar's beliefs. First thing he does is go out and sell everything he owns, gets really unlucky gambling, and lands up to his ears in debt. That's pretty barmy, right? Wrong! You're forgetting the Axiom, berk. As soon as he's done this, the mechanics of the multiverse are primed. All the cunning blood has to do is sit back and watch the rewards roll in, and the multiverse strives to give him back everything he's lost. Hey presto! The cutter's rich as he was before, and he can spend it all over again!
If you wondered why that rather logical piece of thinking belongs to the Xaositects, you'd be asking the right questions. Well, most of the Chaosmen don't really care about the physics of it all; they just enjoy doing crazy things. Varpar despaired about it at first, but it was all part of his grand scheme.
See, once he'd told a few high-ups in the Guvners about his philosophy, they laughed him out of the Courthouse. Varpar'd pretty much expected it; after all, he'd worked hard and been successful for too long and knew a fall'd come any day. So he packed his bags and left the Guvners laughing.
A month or two later, and the Fraternity of Order've come to their senses. Just as Varpar's fall from grace was dramatic, so his rise in the Xaositects has been meteoric. He's as powerful and influential a blood as any in that faction. Could be that the Guvners are jealous, or perhaps they just want to get their hands on the dark of his beliefs. Whatever it is, they've invited him back to the faction, and promised him a post even higher than the one they sacked him from.
Will Varpar return? Who knows, but it'll probably be the opposite of what you'd expect him to do. See, he's discovering greater and greater subtleties in the maths of his beliefs; such that it might even turn out to be addled nonsense after all. Who knows indeed?
The Reactionaries are what the brave cutters in the Xaositects who subscribe to Varpar's barmy idea have chosen to call themselves. Some of them enjoy the chaos of the situation, others like doing the opposite of what they're told to do. Some even go as far as doing exactly what they think they should, knowing the opposite'll happen, and maybe the opposite again. It's a complex business, contrariness.
Even stranger, for each Reactionary in the Xaositects, there seems to be one in the Guvners. These bloods catalogue and test the theory, measuring their actions and reactions to see whether the contrariness holds constant, and if so, whether it'll oscillate more than once. Could life be a continual movement between two opposite states, and if so, how does one alter the amplitude and frequency of such oscillations?
As the small groups of Reactionaries grow, the more conservative thinkers in both factions grow worried. The Xaositect high-ups wonder if their younger members're being influenced towards lawfulness by this ex-Guvner. It was fun letting him in but perhaps the idea's not a good one any more, and the success they've enjoyed's about to go sour. But then they're back on the inescapable ring of Varpar's strange logic.
Meanwhile, the Guvners dislike the spread of disorder and breaking of protocol. Was inviting Varpar back a good idea? Will he come back, and more importantly, do they really want him back? His theories seem to be true, but only if they're proved by the anti-contrary logic of the Fraternity; surely this is the opposite of itself? Frankly, it makes many heads hurt just to think of it all.
And in the middle is Varpar. His theory seems to be excellent, and he's both sought after by and at the same time rejected by two opposing factions. Maybe it's time he started out on his own...or would that herald certain disaster? He could even forget the whole idea...but then, would it bounce back again?
It's surely an impossible quandary.
- Varpar Hogar
Copyright 1998 by Jon Winter