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Oliver D. Bernuetz's Stories

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The Goddess' Tale

I sit in Sorrow.  Long have I sat here in Sorrow.  I know not my name.  He took that.  I know not my children's name.  He changed that.  I cannot see the Sky.  He hid us from that.  This was all once part of the Garden planted by my father, mighty and lost Genert.  I am one of his daughters and I made myself a city on the edge of the Garden where my people lived.  They were tall and noble and beautiful and loved the Earth.  But then Chaos came and threatened all.  Genert left to fight it and failed and I who was not a warrior was left here to guard my city and my people who were not warriors.  And I knew that when Chaos came all would be destroyed and all of us would die.  Since we could not fight we decided to dance one last dance before the end.  We adorned ourselves with beauty and anointed ourselves with the sacred. The music lifted to the Sky and warmed our sad hearts.  We moved in sacred forms and pounded the Earth with our bare feet.  Drums were beaten and rattles shook. We were ready to die but then a gnat landed on my shoulder. 

"You do well to prepare for Death, Sister.  May I call you Sister?  Well at least you think you prepare for Death.  But when Chaos comes it is not Death they bring but non-existence. It will be as though none of this ever was.  Is that what you want?  I can save you.  Like I saved Deros."

And he revealed himself as the Trickster.

"Deros is safe?1  I want my people to be safe too!"

"I can save them but," he smiled and shrugged.


"But my aid is not free there is a price."  He smiled a smile that did not reach his eyes.

"What is your price?"

And he whispered in my ear that Trickster and told me what he wanted for his aid.  And I loved my people so that I agreed to his price.  He nodded and took his price.  As I lay there in pain he went to work.  He gathered up all my people and cooked them up in two great pots.  Men in one pot and women in the other.  He peed and shat in each pot.  He stirred and stirred and when they were soft and bubbly he took up a reed of glass.  Dipping the reed in the first pot of men he sucked the reed full and then puffing out his cheeks he blew a globe of flesh. With a great shear he cut the ball free and it bounced on the ground. He kept at this until the pot was empty. He turned to the second pot and let out a cry of dismay. 

"Oh dear!  I've left the women too long and they are too hardened to work.  And here I am all out of fuel!  Oh well, waste not, want not."  And taking up the pot he distended his jaws he emptied out the entire pot, chewing up the contents of the pot!  He made a face as he chewed.

"Ugh, forgot about the pee and shit.  That's really ruined the taste."

As this utterance I was finally able to react despite my pain.  I screamed and summoned an enormous gnome to bury him.  He laughed though and grabbed my city to shield himself.  It was buried by the gnome!  He destroyed the gnome with a feather and laid hands on me.

"Bad goddess.  Is this your gratitude?  Your people are safe."  He burped.  "Oh right. Well half of them anyway." 

He giggled and picked up one of the balls.  He blew in its ass and it shuddered and came to life. It deflated and turned into a short, squat hairless man except for his head which was adorned with a tuft of orange hair.  He blinked and then waved tentatively hello.

"They can now inflate themselves into balls."

He made an encouraging gesture and the little man stuck his thumb in his mouth and blew himself back into a ball shape.

"Now they can roll away from danger, they taste terrible so no one will ever eat more than one.  And..."

Saying this he kicked the ball up into the Sky.  He went flying up yelling "Whee!"

The Trickster reached down into his pants and took out a splinter.  Taking aim he flung it after the little man still flying up into the Sky.  It struck him and the little man exploded into a fireball.  The Trickster shook his head.

"I really should watch what I eat.  It seems to have spoiled the mix."

He cocked his head.

"Ah, time to hide goddess.  I do believe that a swamp is coming." 

Saying this he poked a hole in the ground with his finger and dropped my people in one by one making sure to blow life into each one.  Last of all he dropped me.

He yelled down just before covering the hole up.

"You're welcome by the way."

And so I sit here in my prison.  My hands gone.  My feet gone and worst of all my name.  And my little men come to me for something they can't seem to express and soon leave to wander where they will in our ruined, buried city.  And all that is constant is my Sorrow.


[1] Deros was not strictly safe.  He was killed and cut up into many pieces by Eurmal.  Each piece then came to life and defeated the Chaos that came against them.  See page 452 of The Guide to Glorantha.

Last updated February 22, 2020

Glorantha is a trademark of Chaosium, Inc. Gloranthan material on this page is copyright ©1997-2020 by Oliver D. Bernuetz or by the author specifically mentioned on an individual page. Glorantha is the creation of Greg Stafford, and is used with his permission.

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