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Threetoe's Stories, and Analysis

Forest Befouled

By Threetoe

In ages past the forest had been a place of power and purity. The Great Spirit of the Wood watched over all the creatures that dwelled there. Those that dared hunt in the forest often emerged days later, starving after being lead on endless chases by the Spirit's laughing satyrs. As the centuries rolled on, the elves came to dwell in the protection of the forest. They made their homes on the outskirts of the forest, far from the lake at the wood's center, out of respect for the Great Spirit. It was said that those that drank from the lake would find all their injuries healed if they were pure of heart. From time to time, an elf would fall ill and the satyrs would take them to the lake to be made whole.

A cold wind blew the leaves when Delvadale the elf leaped from his tree. He had been tracking a goblin bowman for many hours. Goblins were the lowest of creatures. They were the enemies of all that lived, eating not half of what they killed. Soon a stag appeared before the goblin. The laughing of the satyrs could be heard in the distance. Delvadale, consumed by hatred, leaped onto the goblin. The startled goblin released his arrow early and by a freak stroke of luck it found its mark. The satyrs ran to the fallen beast, tears in their eyes. Delvadale flew into a rage. He straddled the goblin and brought his fists down on its face over and over until it stopped struggling. The satyrs rushed to pull him from the unconscious hunter. Delvadale threw off the satyrs' arms, grabbed up the goblin's weapons, and returned to the home tree.

Once he was home Delvadale called a meeting of his heart friends and showed them the weapons. They would use these tools against the foul intruders. Working in secret, Delvadale and his cohorts made an arsenal of weapons. They grew barbed arrows from the branches of trees and poisoned them will the juices of the Cichi Cichi berry. After a few goblins had been killed, they kept clear of the forest. Delvadale felt his actions had brought a true peace to the forest that no silly satyr ever could.

Many years passed in the forest when a heart friend came to Delvadale with troubling news. A new creature had entered the forest. Delvadale gathered his weapons and went to investigate. He found a man, clad in furs, kneeling before a wild boar he had shot with an arrow. Delvadale clenched his teeth with rage. He pulled a sharp wooden spear from his back. As he crept closer he could hear the man praying.

"Oh great spirit of the forest, I beg your forgiveness, for I must feed my family."

Delvadale howled and raised the spear over his head. The man turned and slashed Delvadale's face with a blade, tearing out an eye. The elf plunged the spear into the man's chest. As the hunter lay dying, Delvadale put his hands to his face and screamed in rage. The forest was silent. Delvadale rose and made his way toward the lake. He could feel eyes watching him, but there was not a creature in sight. With no satyrs to guide him, he quickly became lost. Eventually he found a narrow river and followed it downstream. When he reached the lake he found it ringed by dozens of satyrs. They stood motionless, watching him. Growling with rage he splashed waist deep into the water and began to drink. The pain did not recede. The Elf looked up to see a huge rodent standing on the water. It was the Forest Spirit.

"Your hate has no place in the forest. Be gone, and never return."

Rage burned in the elf's heart as much as the pain of his wound. News of his banishment had reached the home tree before he arrived. Not even his heart friends dared approach him. He gathered his bow and a hooded cloak. Before he left the forest he dyed the cloak purple with the juices of the Cichi Cichi plant. No one would touch him now.

Not knowing which way to go he followed the river upstream toward the mountains. As the cliffs loomed large he found himself in a rocky hill country. Goblins appeared from behind the rocks. Delvadale lowered his hood over his eyes. As several ambushers held their arrows aimed his heart, a pair of leather clad goblins approached and seized his arms. Their hands jerked back as if they had touched hot iron. They hit the ground choking and wheezing. The other goblins lowered their weapons. Delvadale threw back his hood to reveal stark white hair and a beautiful elven face ruined by a horrible scar.

"Take me to your master," commanded Delvadale. The goblins lead Delvadale away from the river and through a maze of canyons until they reached a huge black fortress built into the side of the mountain. Outside the main gate lay huge piles of half eaten bodies. Enormous ogres guarded the entrance. They growled as Delvadale passed, frightening his goblin escort. Inside the fortress menacing cave trolls played, throwing skulls at each other. At last they reached a vaulted throne room. On his black rock seat sat Gulrolek, Lord of the Underworld. Delvadale looked on the demonic ruler with defiance. No injury could match the wrong done him by the Forest Spirit.

"Tell me elf, why I should not have you torn to pieces," said the Lord of the Underworld.

"I know the secrets of the forest," said Delvadale, "With this knowledge you can destroy the elves and all that live in the wood."

The evil ruler rested his horned head on a clawed fist. He agreed to allow Delvadale to rule what was left of the forest once all his enemies were destroyed. Soon after Delvadale found himself leading a goblin raiding party. He rode a chariot pulled by a dozen vicious beak-dogs. They needed to take a short detour before they reached the forest. Ahead of them was a small hamlet. The evil elf cut loose his dogs and sent the goblins rampaging through the village. Once all the villagers outside were dead, Delvadale ordered the goblins to search the houses. They emerged with a dozen crying children which were bound and set on the back of Delvadale's chariot. They rode night and day until they reached forest. The river flowed alongside the chariot. Delvadale sent his goblin scouts into the woods. He could see the elves watching from the trees. Why didn't they shoot the goblins down? Delvadale let out an evil laugh. They had destroyed their impure weapons! Delvadale knew the power of the forest spirit could not be underestimated, however. He whipped the dogs and drove his chariot into the forest. When he had gone as far as he dared he dismounted the chariot, dragging one of the bound children into the river.

"This is what I think of your purity!" screamed Delvadale.

One of his dearest heart friends cried out from the trees above as he slashed out the child's neck and sent the body sliding down the river. Soon the goblins dragged the other children into the river and slaughtered them. Delvadale waded down the river followed by the goblins. When they reached the lake they saw the Forest Spirit gasping and choking as it descended into the befouled water. The satyrs ringing the lake clutched at their necks as they began a grotesque transformation. Their eyes dropped out and their faces burst as the bones grew into the shape of a goat's head. The goblins fled into the woods. Delvadale waded into the center of the lake and addressed the former satyrs.

"Go my foul Blendecs! Show my brothers how to purify a forest!"


    • banishment for infractions
    • collective traumatic experiences could give rise to certain mandates or new ethics in the entity
    • can bargain life prior to a sentence of death
    • ethics could demand the destruction of certain objects
    • lesser creatures can react to threatening gestures in a subordinate or fearful fashion
    • sometimes onlookers will try to stop fights
    • demanding to see superiors in general
    • exchange of land and titles for services rendered
    • tricksters, non-lethal means of deterring intruders, tied to ethics
    • even large creatures can play, evil ones can play macabre games
    • violently urging animals forward by causing them pain, this may be the only way with certain creatures
    • taking and binding hostages
    • some creatures kill for pleasure even when they aren't hungry
    • using extracts to dye clothing, can be used for concealment, repulsion, poison, etc.
    • chariots
    • following water flow directions on regional map
    • there can complicated, multi-stage battle plans and tasks utilizing the universe metaphysics
    • to perform difficult tasks, a questor might be given an army
    • places of power can be avoided out of respect or fear, depending on the entity, places of power can actually have powers, these can have conditions
    • once a mythical being understands the nature and environment of its adversaries it can concoct and share methods to destroy them if it possesses understanding of these matters
    • obscene acts can be used to defile certain locations, creatures and forces associated to these locations could undergo various changes as a result, in this case the spirit is destroyed and the power over the temporal creatures goes to the elf and their nature changes accordingly
    • forces, regional spirits
    • if regional ethics are broken for whatever reason, prayer might be attempted to appease the forces, this might be purely symbolic or it might be necessary and actually useful
    • controlling plant growth up to the point where any desired object could be fashioned
    • forces can have temporal servants to perform tasks for them