A member of a Turkish order of dervishes, or Sufis, whose ritual consists in part of a highly stylized whirling dance.
El-Barak cursed and spat as the boat pushed off from the wharf in the unnamed city, huddled on the tip of the Bay of Corsairs. A line of soldiers stood shoulder to shoulder on the shore, simultaneously holding back an angry mob whilst ensuring that his departure was a one way affair. How dare he be banished from his own home for practicing ancient arts? The same dark arts that had been taught in the region for millennia. A determined sneer spread itself across his face; he would show this petty town that the dead were not a matter to be trifled with. As to how he would do this? Well that small matter was yet to be resolved. One thing he was sure of is that it was an issue he would have plenty of time to stew on.
As the days at sea drifted by, El-Barak's resolve hardened. He would not only show his countrymen the error of their ways, but also the world. He would produce something so revolutionary, so powerful that it simply couldn't be ignored. Days turned to weeks and between the endless blue of sky and sea, soon he could hear the waves chanting his name. It was in this state of delirium that he failed to notice the obvious - his short journey to Ulthuan was taking an age. The weeks had stretched into endless months. Sails stayed becalmed under the baking sun, oars disintegrated under calloused hands.
The sailors wailed in despair, throwing curse after curse on their charge, blaming his presence for the fate that had beset them. In thier desperation they danced and prayed, feet pounding the deck and voices clawing the sky, they cried for a change. In the Old World you have to be careful what you wish for. Storm clouds raced above the ship as voices rose and fell, a brisk breeze snapped out the sails before dying again. Suddenly, out of the volatile sky, boomed an ancient voice. The sailors on deck huddled together for comfort, having only realised their folly too late - for this was the voice of Tzeentch, the Bringer of Change. A change they would realise all too soon.
In a heartbeat the skies cleared and the wind rose. The crew looked around in shock, after such a close encounter, unsure of what such a reversal in fortune would cost them. They would not wait long. One by one with jerky, stilted motions, they rose to their feet. Looking at each other in horror, for these were not actions of thier own accord, they began to dance. The sailors whirled and span across the deck, crying out, alternately to each other and to the sky. Day in and day out they twirled, throats parched and limbs burning. Only one man on that ship wasn't dancing to the same tune; El-Barak looked on in glee as his former captors cavorted endlessly round.
As time passed the ship drifted out of familiar waters, heading further south than any sane vessel dared to go. Starvation gnawed at the bones of the sailors, shrivelling thier flesh and rotting their limbs. Still onwards they danced, an unholy jig. By the time land was eventually sighted, only one man onboard the ship was left in the land of the living. The silence of the sorcerer had saved him from the change Tzeentch had inflicted upon the unfortunate souls around him, passing them from life into unlife, and delivering them into his hands. As the ship bumped into an unfamiliar shore, his dervishes were complete. Little did he know of the use he would find for them...