Thursday, December 29, 2011

The Gnomes

We are a peaceful race, and our forebears came to this land seeking refuge from the Second War of Succession.  We've lived here as farmers, craftsmen and philosophers since long before the coming of the Uruki.

The arrival of the invaders frightened us, for this land was rightfully ours, and they were armed and ready for combat.  They made their appearance far from of our nearest settlement, and our people avoided contact.  For years, the Uruki didn't even realize we existed!  Knowing nothing of the land, they moved to the great central plain, which we had always avoided.  This made it easier for us to remain hidden from them.  

It was clear they didn't understand the land or how to live here, and many of them died in the first years, so we secretly began to assist them.  As they gradually became aware of us, they took to calling us Gnomes, after some ancient myth of theirs.  This actually helped us to avoid them, for they came to think we had supernatural powers and they didn't try so hard to find us.

When they began to banish criminals rather than execute them, we welcomed their banished for this gave us more knowledge of the Uruki.  Even after we revealed ourselves to them outright, they continued to call us Gnomes, and claimed we were non-men.  Their provision against killing didn't apply to us; and so we did our best to prevent them from leaving the great central plain.

When the Uruki Chieftain Condon led his people out of the Borderlands, to the Grey Hills, many people on both sides died in the skirmishing.  When they reached the Rift Valley, my grandsire, Tyrum, sued for peace; and the resulting treaty granted our people the same rights as Uruki Clansmen, allowing us to live together peacefully. 

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