ll of the North of the Warhammer World is part of the Chaos Wastes. All of the North ? No a small, barren frosty island directly on the North Pole of the Warhammer World is still free of the influence of Chaos. There a small community struggles for freedom and independence.
The island has no own name, nor have it’s inhabitants formed a nation in the usual sense. The area itself is just called “North Pole”. Not only that there seems to be no national conscience there seems also to be no real understanding of economic mechanics and procedures either. The people of “North Pole” produce goods (especially sweets and toys) all year long, but deliver all of the years production on a single day. And the most unbelievable part is that they do not even present a bill to the recipients.
The ruler of “North Pole” is called Weihnachtsmann (Father Christmas). He is a big guy with a white long beard and a deep ready laugh . He dresses always in red and wears a special hat with a bowl at the end. A little bit like a jester. But don’t be fooled by his appearance. He says he only wants to fulfil wishes, but he is an real autocrat as despotic as they come. His word is law and he sents out presents or thugs as he sees fit and the “HoHoHo” of his laugh makes the blood of even the meanest and toughest freeze.
At his side is a still (after some hundred years) girlish looking woman called Christkind, a real fancy dresser. She wears always expensive and stately clothes, with some stars and glitter on it,. Some sources mention wings on her back, but there is no real proof to that. Her relation to Weihnachtsmann is unknown, whether she’s daughter, lover or some kind of councillor is unsure, but she also does some of the delivery in the Empire of men.
This hoarded wealth (especially on the day before delivery) and seemingly naivety (regarding business procedure) easily leads to the image that “North Pole” would be an easy and rewarding target for any venturing General. But be careful the fact that “North Pole” exists since hundreds of years independently within the Chaos Wastes hints that there is more than meets the eye. It is not only protected by strong enchantments but also by an formidable army. It is not unheard that an “North Pole” army was sent out to free trading routes (probably better called delivery routes as the goods are strictly going one way only) or to free some of their people who were held for ransom.
The armies are usually lead by a Nikolaus (St. Claus).
This seems to be some kind of hereditary title as all the army leader seem to carry that name. He looks like a younger issue of Weihnachtsmann and some sources hint at the possibility that Weihnachtsmann is elected yearly from the all the Nikoläuse. Other sources state that they are all bodily sons of Weihnachtsmann and he is just too lazy to think about new names. The last theory is supported by the fact that all Nikoläuse have the same stature as Father Christmas, the same beard and the same dress code. They also can often be seen riding in a reindeer drawn sledge. A convertible model also favoured by Weihnachtsmann. We are sure that the information that those sledges are able to fly can be put in the land of lore.
Knecht Ruprecht (Grizzle)
For dirty work like roughing up bad boys Nikolaus has Knecht Ruprecht at his side. Knechte Ruprecht also serve as army officers. There is no further information on them, but it seems obvious that Knecht Ruprecht is also an hereditary title and a Rute seems to be their sign of office.
Weihnachtssänger (Carol singers)
The North Pole army does not have any wizards per se, but they enchant with songs. Those songs are called Christmas Carols and are able to bewitch even the hardest heart. Lore has it that in ancient times the singers were accompanied by a brass band, but when the city walls of Jericho fell down in a concert, the brass band was abandoned.
The main force is made up by Elfen infantry. The literal translation would be Elves, but the Elfen look more like Goblins with sharp features than like Elves. The Elfen are part of the working class, producing the toys, the sweets and most other goods. They are small and nimble and quite clever. They are surprisingly good fighters and equipped with the most exotic weapons, the double handed teddy bear probably being the most exotic from all. There nimbleness makes them very hard to hit in combat and proofs to be as effective as the hardest of armours.
The Elfen look after the art aspect of goods, but the technical aspect is handled by the Gnomes. But not only their technical and mechanical skill, but also their physical appearance show their parentage which they have in common with the Dwarfs. They wear red Zipfelmützen and long beards like Nikoläuse.
But the beards are often quite short because whenever they gut stuck in some mechanism (and that happens quite often) they have to be cut free. The Wichtel are highly skilled but not very strong, so they prefer ranged over close combat. The weapons are of the Wichtels own design and are usually quite short ranged, but devastating. A projectile from a chewing gum gun can bring a full regiment to stop and a sugar can in the eye is no sweet sight. Thanks to their technical expertise their armour is much better than that of comparable troops.
Mail Order Trolls
A rather recent addition to the North Pole society and army are the Trolls of the mail order. We are still in the dark about the origin of that name as none of them wears mail nor any other kind of armour. With the world’s population growing so fast (despite all those wars), Weihnachtsmann, Christkind and Nikoläuse sometimes just can’t manage to deliver all the goods in one day. In this case the mail order trolls step in and deliver some of the goods. Mail Order Trolls or just Trolls fall into two broad categories. One is called Stone Trolls, because anything delivered by them looks as if had been hit by a big (and I mean a real big) stone. The other kind is called River Trolls, because anything delivered by them looks as if it had been washed up on the shore of a river.
Before becoming a Nikolaus you will have to endure an apprenticeship. While the apprenticeship lasts the Nikoläuse to be will wear the Green Zipfelmützen and replace them with the red ones of a real Nikolaus on passing the final exams. Those who fail the exams have still the opportunity to become an Knecht Ruprecht. The Green Zipfelmützen most favourite lessons are the sledge driving lessons. The best and most reckless sledge driving Green Zipfelmützen form the Sledge Units in any army.
The only land animal native to the “North Pole” are polar bears. They have been befriended by the people of the “North Pole” and are used mainly as guard bears. Some tried to use them also as lap bears, but, that was a short and bloody fashion. Usually the fur of polar bears is snow white as this is the perfect camouflage in the snow wastes of “North Pole”, but in a small area call Dalmatia there are hot black stones which stick out of the white snows. The bears living in that area are called Dalmatians and there fur pattern adapted to their surroundings white with black spots. Rumour has it that there are always 101 Dalmatians at any time.
The North Pole is an awfully cold and bare area, there is only one plant growing there quite a miracle I must say. The plant is an needle tree called Christmas Tree. The people of North Pole are so happy to have at least one kind of plant, so that they ornate those trees with small painted glass spheres, sweets and lights. Rumour has it that those trees can move and wherever they rest for a while presents appear beneath them. Researchers still argue whether the presents are some kind of the tree’s fruit or whether the tree together with the light acts as a homing beacon for Nikoläuse so that they know where to deliver the goods.
Ghost of Christmas
Sometimes an army is accompanied by an Ghost of Christmas. There seem to be three kinds of then The Ghost of Christmas Past, Present and Future. There is a theory that the Ghost of Christmas Past is used to frighten customers who haven’t paid last years bill, the Ghost of Christmas Present to frighten customers who haven’t paid this years bill. But that theory is bound to be wrong as nobody is known to be given a bill and the Ghosts of Future Christmas wouldn’t have anything to do as you never know who will not pay his next bill.
Sometimes presents have to be delivered to places which are not readily accessible. In those cases the presents are delivered with the help of a Present Lobber. It is needless to say that the Present Lobber is an Mail Order Troll (of the Stone category) invention.
Once in a while the sledges have to travel where there’s no snow. The inventive Wichtel constructed a cannon that can make snow just for those cases. The cannon itself is mounted on a sledge and makes snow in front of itself, gliding over the freshly made snow it is followed by the other sledges. The snow cannon can also be used as an short ranged weapon.
Excerpt from “My travels in the North” by Gerhard Wanderer.