- "Hack, grind, cook and eat. Those Butchers are alright. Don't get near their pots though..."
- —Anonymous Ogre.[2a]
Ogre Butchers are second only to Tyrants in terms of power and influence, for they not only the spiritual and magical representative of their tribe and god, but they are also the tribe's foremost cooks. Through the gory ritual preparation and consumption of meat, Butchers channel a portion of their fearsome deity's eternal hunger into feats of magic. Invoking the single-minded strength of their god, Butchers can instill unnatural vitality to their comrades, swelling the Ogres muscles and toughening their skin. They can even turn their wrath upon the enemy, causing bones to break or the ground to open up and swallow their foes.[1a]
Although not as mighty as a Tyrant, a Butcher is an emissary of the Great Maw and is held in both awe and fear by his tribe. Butchers prepare all of a tribe's feasts, celebrations in which all Ogres take great pride. Around camp a Butcher is given a wide berth, for it is best not to get too close in case he is looking for extra ingredients, as fingers or whole limbs have been known to go missing. In battle, however, Butchers are most often found right in the thick of the fighting, where they use their cleavers and magic to great effect.[1a]
Butchers are typically more rotund than an average Ogre and have even worse personal hygiene. They often resemble walking larders, for in addition to being caked in dried blood and offal, Butchers adorn themselves in chunks of meat, along with an array of meat hooks, cleavers, filleting knives and even special tenderisers tucked into a leather apron, or even pierced through their flabby skin. A Butcher must be prepared to use these items in their gore-soaked rituals at a moment's notice. Of all true Ogres, only the Butchers do not wear a gut-plate -- they trust their guts to the protection of the Great Maw.[1a]
Any infant that conforms to the recognised portents is immediately handed to the tribe's Butcher, who bites deep into the whelp's gut to claim it as his own. The Butcher then force-feeds the child in a continual glut until the protegé has grown fat and strong. Further initiations into the secrets of the Great Maw include gulping down rotten meat and toxins to build a tolerance to poison, learning the art of grinding bones to meal, and discovering which parts of a beast to devour to augment different magics.[1a]
Butchers are responsible for blessing their tribal warriors with the power of the Great Maw itself, as well as inflicting great harm to those that dare to stand before them. Some Butchers show an inclination towards magics other than the Great Maw. Some take powers from the very animals they cull, while those who dream of an oncoming fiery comet have a penchant for reading the future and controlling the weather in destructive ways, whilst always looking to the heavens for some sky-borne disaster. Still other Butchers revel in the final act of their killing work, and their spells focus on death and dying. Regardless of their focus, Ogres believe that to cross a Butcher is to cross the Great Maw itself, a certain recipe for a painful doom.[1a]