"I won't spoil the conclusion if you're eager to see this through."
This article contains MAJOR SPOILERS relating to
some of the most pivotal parts of Worm. Although all articles contain spoilers, this article will reveal major plot twists and should almost certainly be avoided unless you have finished the story.
Lou Joubert, known to the world as Moord Nag, is a Namibian warlord and one of the most powerful parahumans in Africa, politically and otherwise.
Likely triggered while isolated and being controlled by another in keeping with the master pattern. Her agency was likely taken from her in some way.
Dismissive of human life, possibly linked to her partners need to feast on the dead. She looked forward to seeing well of areas of the world devastated by Khonsu. She held to her word and thought that speaking English was beneath her.
She treats Aasdier as an equal partner and companion.
Took control of a huge section of Africa with only the help of Aasdier, and still held it after more than eight years. Local Warlords and groups paid homage to her when operating in her area. She was known to have killed thousands of people, yet was still free. She was recognized as powerful by other powerful people.
Unlike many capes on Earth Bet, Moord Nag doesn't have a costume. Ordinarily, she keeps her hair in braids and wears a t-shirt with the sleeves removed and the bottom half cut off and an ankle-length dress that is frayed at the edges.
Moord Nag's power, near as anyone can tell, is an enormous living shadow named Aasdier that follows her around. It has an instinctual reaction to anything that could possibly harm her, it bases this off of intent and it will even destroy attempts to investigate himself or his master. Aasdier gained an ongoing expansion of pursuance and stature when it ingested humans, dead  or possibly alive. Originally, he could fit in the palm of her hand and was very weak, by 2011, it was large enough for her to ride on. It switches out various skulls, including bovine, humanoid, avian, rodent, serpentine and crocodilian all scaled up to fit the size of Aasdier. It is unknown if these are added or a feature of Aasdier himself.
It is unclear if there is an upper limit to how powerful Aasdier can become and how many lives he can take to fuel and empower himself, each absorption usually only gives him an extra teaspoon of mass or so. Aasdier can, however, lose mass with certain failures on the part of his host or other monumentally damaging effects, splitting or sectioning him apart is ineffective as he will simply reintegrate. Aasdier further shows some immunity to space-time effects. Moord Nag requests five thousand lives as her price for fighting an Endbringer (with the implication being that Aasdier needs that amount to be strong enough to challenge an Endbringer) so she was confident that she could use that amount. Despite being seemingly composed of smoke, Aasdier cannot go through walls, at least without destroying them first, the same effect that can kill people and bugs and scour the body of Endbringers.
Moord Nag's connection with Aasdier and by extension her shard are much like that of Breaker-type cape. They have a deep bond of trust.
With the aid of Aasdier, Moord Nag became the de facto ruler of much of Namibia with many smaller warlords paying her homage, a position she has held for eight years. Now her effective territory extends past Namibia, well into Angola, Botswana, and even a small part of South Africa.
Was called to a meeting following the emergence of a global threat and was already seated when the full contingent of Undersiders and their allies arrived. Weaver attempted to use her swarm to see if she had any weapons, Aasdier blocked and killed the insects. She listened as Doctor Mother thanked them for coming before she mentioned that people died every day. Teacher said that he had given her the ability to understand and speak English and that it wouldn't cost her anything to use it. She told him that she wouldn't speak it.
Doctor Mother asked Moord Nag if she would help them and she turned her down. Tattletale then told Faultline about her before Moord Nag corrected her, saying that she wasn't alone because she had Scavenger. Doctor Mother asked her what it would take to get her to fight and Moord Nag told her she would need to replenish her power. Doctor Mother said that Cauldron would supply her and Moord Nag told her that she would need five thousand lives. Dragon and Chevalier objected to the deal though Moord Nag told them that the contract was sealed before walking away.
Moord Nag later rode Scavenger into battle against Khonsu. She stepped off Scavenger before it lunged at the Endbringer. Scavenger was trisected, but continued to wind around and tear into Khonsu's body. It attacked Khonsu's injuries, knocking him off balance, and then pushed Moord Nag out of the way of one of Khonsu's fields. Aasdier proved himself resistant to the fields' effects. Then, having enough, Khonsu teleported away from the battlefield to the next site. Aasdier was left behind.
Having survived the opening moments of the event, Moord Nag was contacted by Cauldron for another meeting. She was given an interpreter to tell her about the particulars of the conversation.
Moord Nag later fell under Khepri's control and was used as part of a ploy for the goddess to capture Glaistig Uaine. Khepri sent her into the front-lines alongside Alexandria and Legend as Ash Beast attacked Scion. Mere minutes afterward, she was pulled back and sent through dimensions to scavenge from the dead. Moord Nag was then redeployed alongside other heavy hitters, relieving the force that had been fighting Scion. Sifara used his power to move Moord Nag closer only for Moord Nag to have a stroke from mental stress. This stemmed from Khepri's control being very similar to her trigger event.
Khepri sent her to Panacea to be healed and, after the healer initially refused, sent the repaired warlord back out against Zion. However, the golden man was able to bash the pair away before Scavenger could reach full size. In the final battle in New York, Moord Nag and Aasdier fought Zion side by side with Lung.
"There was no long-term, and trying to cling to one would only spoil it all."
This article contains spoilers regarding the ending of Worm and plot of the sequel.
On Moord Nag's power: Breaker/spectral minion of ambiguous solidity (as it desires) and form. Kill people = minion gains a bit of mass. Started off like a palm-sized critter. Gained maybe a tablespoon of mass per kill. She's had a few setbacks along the way. Trying to game it/fool the shard kinda backfired once or twice. Power eraser ate a good chunk once. Found someone who made clones, ate clones. Looked like it worked for a bit, then power rebelled, and she lost a huge chunk of her minion at a critical moment. She basically has auto-defense. Her spirit will identify incoming attacks & hostility and move to block. If I were to stat her out in Weaverdice, I'd give her a series of 'stances'. Ride, Safe, Offense. With her spirit behavior changing accordingly. She doesn't manually control the spirit, but Breadth and Depth are set enough & her conflict yields are high enough that it's effectively a subconscious extension of her anyway, with trust on both sides. She doesn't turn it off or put it away. She's not in a position where she ever would or has to. She can send it away. But again, moot point. It can move through walls but only by destroying them in the process. There's something congealed in there, so it wouldn't pass through a keyhole.
On Moord Nag before "breadth and depth" set in: Moord Nag was a traumatized pokemon trainer with one pokemon in a war-torn country, and her pokemon didn't always cooperate. - archived conversation on Spacebattles
↑You triggered at a very young age, you were no doubt isolated, as masters tend to be. - Excerpt from Teneral e.1
↑ 4.04.1I sent Moord Nag in with the other heavy hitters, relieving the force that Scion was fighting.
Sifara moved the ball, moving Moord Nag a distance forward. Her pet shadow Scavenger loomed, as large as it had ever been.
And Moord Nag promptly had a stroke. I watched as Scavenger dissipated into smoke.
Wha- what? Why?
I reached out to Moord Nag, and I could feel the damage being done. I moved her back just as I’d moved her forward, shifting more capes onto the battlefield to deliver some ranged fire.
Why? I was stunned, and putting my thoughts together in regards to this was like trying to swim in molasses.
Had to act, instead of thinking. Investigate.
I used my ability to read the physical states of the creatures I controlled, reading my swarm much as I’d check a spider’s level of hunger, its health, fertility or the amount of venom available.
Almost across my entire swarm, people were threatening to lose their minds. Literally.
It was stress, a factor I hadn’t taken into account. I controlled their bodies, but I didn’t control their minds. They were bystanders, watching this all unfold, and even though I regulated their heartbeats, kept their breathing level, the mental stress accumulated.
There were exceptions in every category, but I could assess my gathered army with broad strokes of the brush. The thinkers were coping best, the tinkers nearly as well. The masters struggled the most, followed by the shakers and breakers. The rest fell in some middle ground. Moord Nag… my control over her had apparently tapped into some kind of trauma or phobia she had, so she’d been the first to reach some kind of fever pitch in terms of the buildup of stress-induced chemicals and reactions.
I was killing my own minions.
I moved quickly, scrambling to get measures in place before I lost any more.
An open portal and a telekinetic let me move Moord Nag to the only available, capable healer I had available. - Excerpt from Speck 30.5
↑ 5.05.15.25.3The Doctor spoke “Moord Nag? We could use your assistance.”
The woman and her shadow pet with its crocodile skull looked at Doctor Mother. “Laat hulle almal sterf. Ek is tevrede om die wêreld te sien brand en die vallende konings te spot. Ek en my aasdier sal loop op die as van die verwoeste aarde.”
“She says no. Let them all die,” the woman from the Birdcage said.
“Can I ask who she is?” Faultline asked.
Tattletale was the one to answer. I think she got a measure of joy out of rubbing the fact that she knew in Faultline’s face, “Moord Nag. Warlord based in Namibia. As far as the current warlords in the area go, she’s had the longest lifespan at about eight years or so, and she’s gotten things to the point where most of the other bastards around there are kowtowing, asking permission to attack this city or occupy that area, to go to the bathroom or unite two groups in an alliance.”
“Us, basically,” Tattletale said, glancing at me. She turned her head to look at Grue, “Only on a much, much bigger scale, and she did it alone.”
“Ek het dit reggekry met aasdier,” Moord Nag responded. “Nie alleen nie.”
↑“Your daughter was a mental wreck the last time anyone outside of the Birdcage saw her. There are too many dangerous individuals in there. She,” Chevalier said, pointing in the direction of the woman with the shadowy pet with the massive bird skull, “Has killed thousands of people. That’s nothing compared to what some individuals in the birdcage have done. We’d be letting the wolves run free again, in the hopes they deal with the lion.” - Excerpt from Scarab 25.5
↑Cauldron. I was looking at the people behind Cauldron. I felt a chill, despite myself.
“Ms. Alcott declined to join us,” the woman in the lab coat said. “As did Adalid, who wanted to be ready to defend his home in case the new Endbringer arrived there. The three blasphemies and Jack Slash were unreachable, but we would have far fewer problems if individuals like them could be reached so easily.” - Excerpt from Scarab 25.5
↑ 9.09.19.2I could make out a station with a woman, black, accompanied by a massive shadow of a monster with an auroch’s skull for a head. The woman’s head hung, her hair braided or bound into dreads, I couldn’t be sure. I moved my bugs closer to check to see if she had any weapons, and her pet shadow reached out to block the swarm. They died so quickly it was almost as though the shadow had killed before it made contact.
↑Moord Nag appeared, riding her shadow’s skull like a surfer might ride a wave, except there wasn’t any joy in the act. Her arms remained still at her sides, her head not fully erect, eyes almost looking down, as if she watched the skull with one eye and Khonsu only merited her peripheral vision.
She didn’t wear armor. Her top was a simple t-shirt with the sleeves removed and bottom half cut off. There was a faded image of a rock band on the front, her bra straps showing through the gaping armholes. Her dress was ankle length, frayed a little at the edges. Her feet were bare, her hair in braids and tied back behind her neck.
The skull dipped close to the ground, and the warlord stepped off as though she was getting off an escalator. - Excerpt from Scarab 25.6
↑ 11.011.111.2Still, he was feeling the hurt. Moord Nag’s shadow ripped into the site of the injury, widening it, danced back as Khonsu swung one arm at the skull, clipping and shattering one antler, and then lunged again, driving itself into another injured area.
It caught Khonsu off-balance, and he landed on his back on the ground. The shadow flowed over him, the skull butting him in the face to knock him down once again as he tried to rise. It simultaneously extended out, reaching across the battlefield to push Moord Nag back out of the way of a swiftly approaching Khonsu-field. She stumbled a little as she was deposited a hundred feet back, but she didn’t really react. The shadow had more personality than she did, here. [...] The Endbringer teleported, and thanks to the Thanda, we were collectively teleported with it. My bugs, Moord Nag’s shadow, and several tinker-made mechanical soldiers were left behind, as we found ourselves on a beach riddled with stones the size of my fist. - Excerpt from Scarab 25.6
↑Moord Nag Master pet 'scavenger' gains permanent increase in size and power by consuming the dead Independent - Parahuman List, bolded edit by Wildbow.
↑ 13.013.1“Vyf duisend, lewendig, dit maak nie saak of hulle mag het of nie. ‘N Fraksie van wat jy die gek aangebied het.”
“No,” Dragon said, before the translator could speak.
“Yes,” the Doctor said, just as readily. “I caught the number, I can figure out the rest. You’ll get what you need.”
“I can’t stand by and watch this, not like this,” Chevalier said.
“How many more will die if we don’t act?” the Doctor said. “The Thanda will counteract the Endbringer’s teleportation ability, at least for a time. Moord Nag gives you much-needed clout. Again, at least for a short time.”
“In exchange for five thousand lives?” Dragon asked.
“A small price to pay. How many have died as we conducted this meeting?”
“Jy praat asof dit saak maak. Die kontrak is verseël. Sal ons gaan nou,” Moord Nag said.
“What did she just say?” Chevalier asked. Moord Nag was already walking away, stepping away from the panel and into the recessed passage beside it, almost completely hidden in shadow. I could only make out the rodent’s skull, overlarge and pale in the darkness.
“The contract is settled,” Dragon said. “She sees it as inviolable, now.”
“I like her,” Marquis commented. “Mass murder aside, anyways. Woman of her word.” - Excerpt from Scarab 25.5
↑ 15.015.1Scion was in the midst of fighting a monstrous, hulking dragon-man and the warlord with the death-eating shadow. He saw the first of the faces that the reality-manipulator had created and lashed out, demolishing it.
Scion fought his way free, and the warlord went on the offensive, lashing out. She’d collected the bodies of the dead, as the faerie girl had collected their ‘spirits’. She was strong, though not quite as strong as she would have been if things hadn’t gone sour.
He tore into h- her pet and the damage was permanent. She pressed forward anyways, forcing him to retreat above the skyline. - Excerpt from Speck 30.6
↑ 16.016.1The shadow’s head had taken on the appearance of a serpent’s skull, complete with fangs, and the body was a column behind it, stirring around Moord Nag without touching her.
It lunged, and fragments flew off Khonsu’s shoulder as the shadow made contact, rubbed against him. It was as though the shadow’s body were a series of circular saws, a rasp.
Khonsu’s field made contact with the shadow’s body, catching the middle of its body. Moord Nag didn’t even flinch as her serpent was trisected, the middle section dragged away.
The serpent was winding around Khonsu now, maximizing the surface area that was making contact. Khonsu elected to ignore it, floating forward to put himself in reach of more of the defending capes. [...] Apparently deeming that the circles weren’t working in this situation, Khonsu banished all three. Moord Nag’s shadow was freed, and rejoined the remainder of the mass. Khonsu’s forward advance was momentarily paused by the impact. He created the circles anew, placing them in spots where people at the epicenter couldn’t move fast enough to escape. - Excerpt from Scarab 25.6
↑Indiscriminate, January 20th, 2012 // Khonsu Notes: First appearance. Scion/Moord Nag victory. List of all one hundred and sixty three targets and casualty numbers here.
Lüderitz, April 2nd, 2012 // Leviathan Notes: Loss? Driven away by Eidolon. Secondary targets Swakopmund, Gamba, Port-Gentil and Sulima. Target/Consquence: Moord Nag. Guerilla tactics continue, losses in notable but not devastating numbers, but his target survives. - Excerpt from Scarab 25.6
We'd just lost our last major advantage in determining how this could play out. Jack was getting everything. He was a wiki-walk away from getting details on everyone who was arrayed against his new Slaughterhouse Nine. - Excerpt from Sting 26.6
↑All of the other major players were present, minus the Birdcage contingent. The Thanda had six members in near-identical robes. Their logo was a block of letters arranged in a five-by-five grid. Moord Nag had a ring of skulls around a black circle. Faultline’s crew had a wavelength, like a reading on an seismic monitor. [...] I looked over the room. Moord Nag and the South American capes had interpreters rattling off the particulars of the conversation. The Protectorate, the Irregulars, Faultline’s crew, the Suits… all bristled with anger. - Excerpt from Extinction 27.2
↑I took control of Alexandria, instead, Pretender. Controlling the person who was controlling the manipulative bitch Alexandria. I took Legend, who was part of that fight, two foreign capes and Moord Nag.
They were the ones running interference, buying us time to breathe.
Now I positioned them. As I’d done with my bugs, I lined up the shot.
↑I needed to consolidate my strength. I had capes gathering materials. Moord Nag was among them, one of the scariest warlords of Africa, now traveling between dimensions to scavenge from the dead, her pet shadow devouring mountains of flesh from mass graves and battlefields, swelling in size. - Excerpt from Speck 30.5
↑For all it mattered, they might as well have been a kids on the schoolyard, sticking their legs out to trip someone. Scion found his momentum again.
Panacea was healing Moord Nag.
I reached for the warlord, bringing her to me.
Scion struck her aside before Scavenger could swell to his full size. - Excerpt from Speck 30.5
↑“Time is of the essence. [...] Your Valefor is healed and gone. Warlords from your old Earth have been snatched up, and people don’t yet know.” - Excerpt from Gleaming 9.2