*Please note that entries concerning “old Orlanthi oathes” or that old chestnut about the double-headed Salilgori coin are no longer considered worthy of gaining free entry to the Library Reading Room in future. By order, Theo. Pandarus, Temple Collator.
[XXIX.13.35] Herd-man can be served in a variety of ways, most of which can be found on Anchoritenus’s list of morally objectionable foods. Yet it is considered highly indecorous if the presentation of the dish gives the eater even the slightest suspicion he is eating eating herd-human. Even when the cook’s intention is not to deceive, and the guests are fully aware herd-man meat is on the menu, in civilized company no one will refer to the dish without a euphemism. In Pavis, the butchers peddle it as “mock pork”, in the Holy Country it is known as “forcemeat”.
With a candour which is often revolting, Malhawi Habatat describes a feast of almost obscene novelty in which forcemeat was served, at the court of the great Demivierge of Rhigos:
The naked brutes were paraded before us, glazen-eyed and stupid, yet our lady had personally selected them for their classical proportions and they had of course been well-oiled and depilated of all body hair. Following the lead of our mistress, each guest selected a herd-human of their choice, which was brought to their couch and made to go through a series of poses. That certain guests used the beasts for sexual purposes before they went to the pot I will for our lady’s honour not answer. Later that evening, each guest was served a dish of “forcemeat” cooked to their whim, and although hands, feet and, inevitably, genitals graced the plates as garnishments, everyone of course pretended not to notice.
Old Glaucon (the head cook) always complained that our mistress liked her herd-men far too lean for the best eating, but it was she who had them imported from Prax at tremendous expense. He later found himself trussed up and sold to the morokanth, after our lady discovered that he had been substituting human actors in the posing, and putting his plumper herd-men in the pot. She always did enjoy making the punishment fit the crime.
[XXIX. 13-36] …Among these states, the custom is to identify the sects of Malkion through the use of totem symbols. The Borists use a white eagle, the Brithini a crowned silver law rune black, the followers of Rokar use a multitude of gold law runes on blue, the mark of the cursed Galvosti is the evil green leopard, and the fanatic Hrestoli place Law over Harmony in varying colours. The troll sorcerers and their ilk use a thousand signs, but a magic sign with an orb of black is common. All peasant folk in Ralios, regardless of sect, patiently await the return of the Snake Kings… [Ciconia’s Ralian Journal, 1589 S.T.]
[XXIX. 13-37] There is in the forecourt of knowledge of Rhigos, deplorable city, a statue of Lhankor Mhy standing on a book. Foolish people there think he read with his feet.
[XXIX. 13-38] Introductory note, by a Grey Sage of Jonstown. This information is from Likstrandros, an early God-Learner who betrayed many Orlanthi secrets to his friends. He is famous for some other writing, notably the Second Gloss to Harmast’s Heroquest. In fact, these notes are from that Gloss, or perhaps an early draft of it.
“Before the time of Harmast Barefoot, there were ten tribes of the Heortlings: Penentelli, Vestantes and Infithtelli of Aggar; Berenneth of Saird; Forosivuli of Holay, and Liornvuli of Tarsh, both remnants of the elder Lastralgors; Stravuli of Dinaros; Koroltes of Doriziland; Orgovaltes of Orgovalland; and Gansavuli, of Gansaland. The first four tribes were overcome in the First and Second Theyalan Wars. The next four were conquered in 379 at the Battle of Night and Day, when the darkmen summoned the Black Eater but were crushed by the light of Nysalor. The last two survived after the Battle of Vanntar in 397, when the dragonewts were destroyed by dwarf-magic. So many people fled to the Stormwalk Mountains that a new tribe, the Hendriki, was formed from their refugees. When the Dorastan Empire enforced their rule upon the tribesmen, they forced all to accept worship of Lokamayadon instead of Orlanth. The people who protested left the valleys, and lived the Old Way in the hills, without fields or ploughs. Harmast was born amid these peoples, in the lands of the Stravuli, around 393 or so.”
[XXIX.13-39] To conceive, the shamaness told the hapless girl to first… [there is a damage to the manuscript here, which no spell or process can seem to restore]… then, swallow this seed whole… …do not mar it with your teeth, for it is a human soul…
[XXIX. 13-40] On a paving stone in the blasted ruins of the City of Miracles it was allegedly written, “…during the God Time, Rashoran, the last god of Law and first god of Chaos illuminated Humakt and Uleria…”
[XXIX.13-41] This is a tale of Ralios, translated by me, Gordal the Unstoned, from Easmuir Delelac’s “Mythic Eschatology”, a Safelsteran work published last century: In the Golden Age Yelm’s favourite bird was Vulture. Vulture was the most beautiful of all the birds, his plumage was pure gold, his crest filled with long and slender feathers which were all the colours of the rainbow. Yelm gifted his favourite with the choicest portions of any food available, he allowed Vulture above all birds to soar closest to his own divine radiance. When Yelm was slain by Orlanth and forced into the underworld, he asked his beloved Vulture to follow him, but Vulture refused, saying that the underworld did not befit such a noble and beautiful creature as himself. This displeased Yelm and at the beginning of Time when the Lightbringers returned him to the sky so he could follow his daily path across the firmament, Yelm took vengeance on his faithless servant. Yelm plucked the crest of many colours from Vulture’s head. He withdrew the golden hue from Vulture’s feathers. Yelm ordered “That never again shall such a bird so vain be allowed to eat the first meat: instead, you must wait in hunger for the last pickings. You can fly high in the sky, but must hang your head in shame from my flames.” This Delelac claims to be a Greylord, yet is a willing, even enthusiastic participant in the erroneous Stygian Heresy (a diabolic mixture of Western atheism and true veneration). This, and the fact that our own mythology of course identifies Vrimak as Yelm’s favoured bird, enables me to dismiss this tale as fanciful Western rubbish.
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