Sigurd the Dragonslayer (c. Y470 – Y523) was born with the name Volsungar into an imperial warrior caste of orcs. After a battle to eliminate a secret mountain dwarf vault, his human allies turned on the orc battalion to preserve their secret. He and a few other orcs managed to escape the purge and fled to the Scythian mountains, where imperial rule was weakest. He was one of the first founders of the Liberation Army after Myrrh‘s defection in the imperial capital. He became fast friends with Baldur the Radiant and Andvari the Cunning, who gave him the nickname Sigurd (which means victorious hero in one ancient imperial dialect) after he slew one of the Empire’s draconic allies, a fearsome wyrm named Fafnir. He wielded Gram, the Unstoppable Axe, and was considered by his companions to be the most deadly warrior in the world. It was said that even without his favored weapon, he was a fearsome combatant with fist, tooth, and claw. Those who worship Sigurd as a god revere him as a deity of fire and a protector of those who travel the wilderness.
After the Holy War, Sigurd founded the duchy of Santenne in the eastern plains. Many of the orcs he liberated in the war followed him there to begin anew. After centuries of imperial enslavement, there was such intense racial prejudice against orcs that all they wanted was to live in nomadic isolation. Not all orcs moved east; some newly formed tribes remained in the west and tried to avoid human civilization. Over time, the racial tension has greatly subsided, but many orcish customs and traditions, including their nomadic lifestyle, have remained part of orcish life in Grandévere.
In Y523, Sigurd was slain in battle with the great wyrm Nidhogg. His axe Gram is now thought to be a part of Nidhogg’s legendary hoard. Treasure hunters and mercenaries on the payroll of wealthy collectors have searched for Gram and Nidhogg’s treasure for centuries, but neither the dragon nor his hoard have ever been found.