In The Steps of Bahamut
Although many human cultures have adapted this familiar story for their own use, the elves claim original credit. This tale is told to the young for it stresses the importance of family as well as builds a moral high ground as to why ones culture is better then another.An elf village was destroyed by an orc raiding party-the only survivor an elf woman, great with child. She being an outcast, for having loved a human, was forced to live on the outskirts of the village a twist of fate that saved her life. She fled into the burning forest and forded a swollen stream. On the other side, she found refuge in a tiny human village. There, she gave birth to her child, for labor was brought on by her traumas. With her dying breath she named her infant daughter Havellia KoeD’anna, and she bade a woodcutter care for her child. The elf woman perished that night. Under the care of the villager, who was now the mayor, Havellia grew into a child of amazing beauty. The human women of the household took exception to this beauty, and they did their best to ensure that such loveliness would never show. The mother and her daughters made Havellia clean the stalls, the sties, and the fireplaces every day. The poor half elf child worked from before dawn to after dusk. The people whom she called “family” sought always to humiliate her for her pointed ears and thin features, and to belittle her beauty. Their taunts hurt an innocent heart. And so matters went for many years, until one day a prince rode through the now prosperous village. He was an elf prince, this much is true, and he stopped at the human village to water and feed his stallion. The mayor’s daughters were smitten with his charm and elegance; in him they praised the very features they taunted in Havellia. The elf amused himself at the human girls’ expense-until he saw the thin figure of Havellia trudge by, bearing her heavy burden of firewood. The prince grabbed the half elf maid by the arms and stared long and hard into her eyes. Then, slowly, he smiled, for his search was over. Drajum KoeD’anna had found his sister’s child. The two wept with joy when the truth was revealed, though Drajum was saddened at the news of his sister. He disclosed that he had been away at the time of the orc attack; he had returned to discover their homes in flames. But there was no sign of his sister, whom he knew to be pregnant, and so Drajum went in search of her and her child. More truth was revealed at the house of the mayor’s, for the elf prince saw that the humans had made a slave of his niece. He retaliated by slaying the mayor’s wife and daughters, only just sparing the man’s life at the request of Havellia.
- Moral: Suffer not the vanity of others.