THE MILKEN BROWNIES

APPEARANCE - COAT OF ARMS - TERRITORY - PEOPLE - HOUSING - CLOTHING
DIET - WEAPONS - OCCUPATIONS - GOVERNMENT - PRODUCTION/TRADE
 
NATURAL RESOURCES -
FESTIVALS - HISTORY

The Milken Brownie tribe, living in Milkengrad, is unique in that they have become one society together with the Milkengradians, with whom they have developed a symbiotic relationship. A Milken family lives in virtually every Milkengrad house, and helps the family in whatever they do for a living, or in whatever else they might need helping with. In return they gain respect, and are well taken care of, normally being seen as part of the family. Alone among the Brownie tribes, they worship the elven High Goddess Avá, and culturally are more Milkengradian than Brownie.

Appearance. Milken individuals are identical in appearance to those of the LLaoihrr, Memnoor, and Aohu'o, fitting the general Brownie description. Members of every Brownie ethnic group belong to the Milken, generally categorized as greenbarks, brownbarks, redbarks, bluebarks, yellowbarks, ebonybarks, greybarks and birchbarks.
Return to the top

Coat of Arms/Sign. None.
Return to the top

Territory. The city of Milkengrad, where they live in harmony with the Helcrani population consisting of humans, dwarves and elves.
Return to the top

People. The Milken tribe has several qualities that sets it completely apart from the other tribes. The only tribe that worships Avá, or been influenced by the elven worldview, or human culture, they live in daily close contact with a city (Milkengrad) composed of humans, dwarves, and elves, and have been accepted as fully equal in that society. They have also developed a dependant, symbiotic relationship with these Helcrani, and are generally valued and doted upon. They speak both common Tharian and the Helcran dialect.
Return to the top

Housing. Milken dwell in tunnels under the houses of the Helcrani, decorated like the rest of it, or in a special structure in the yard called "Milkenwana" (little home). Milken residences are often luxurious and especially beautiful. Every family seeks to have its Milken happy, because they believe that brings good luck.

Brownies whose human family no longer exist because of lack of descendants turn to the Head of the House (something like the leader of the kin, a Fratra is divided into Houses and they in turn to Families) in order to be assigned to a new family. Brownies aren't inherited, but they follow whomever of their lord's beneficiaries they want. It is a disgrace for an heir to be chosen by no Milken (compare also the local proverb "Even his Milken don't want him"). Nevertheless, by law no heir should remain without Milken and special articles of the relative statute arrange the details.

The Milken joined the human, elves and dwarves as companions. Each family has its own Milken who adopt its habits, take care of chores in the house and consider themselves as part of it. The Brownie descendants belong to the family and follow marrying children to their new home. There are Sostrian Milken, Helerothi Milken etc. The Milken identify themselves completely with their master's Fratra and social position. They consider themselves as Helcrani of the Brownie race. The other races appreciate and love their Milken. They consider them as members of the family and valuable friends. The number of the Milken living in a house is also considered a sign of wealth and nobility. Aristocratic families brag about the Milken they have. To give an example: Acrat the Menegulan, a wealthy shipowner, boasted that 1000 Milken lived inside his house. Little children are taken care of them and play with them. As soon as a child is born, his parents donate a Milken family to follow it as long as it lives.
Return to the top

Clothing. Milken are generally well-taken care of by the Helcrani families with whom they live.
Return to the top

Diet. The Helcrani families will often prepare food and clothing especially for their Milken. A few crumbs would most likely suffice, but anyone treating his Milken so poorly would be ostracized by society. Milken often are better clothed and better fed than the Helcrani they live with. Return to the top

Weapons. Milken retain the weapons used by the Aohu'o tribes, but are no longer the legendary marksmen that they once were. They also use miniaturized versions of the preferred Helcrani weapons.
Return to the top

Occupations. Milken are responsible for keeping the house clean while the rest of the family is asleep, getting rid of insects, mice and other "unpleasant" visitors. During the many civil wars among the Helcrani the Milken also fought bloody battles divided in opposing Fratrae just like their masters. During the Fratric Wars epic battles took place not only between the runty Milken, but also among Milken and men, because they were used by men in special operations. Warlord Lamach of the Ahai’s once said, when he saw his Milken returning victorious while his men were defeated, "if only my Milken were half the size of my men I'd rule the world". Very soon, besides the civil wars, the Brownies officially joined the armed forces of Milkengrad. They were used as spies, scouts and saboteurs. This resulted in a much better social position for the Milken.

There are numerous traditions, tales, proverbs and beliefs about the Milken that justify the words of the Badahur the Invader after the Fratric Battle of the Idiots (P.S. The Milken stopped it, because Erpheronian troops were approaching for battle - the conflict stopped only to start again when the invaders were repelled.): "If there are any Milkengradians, then these are the little ones. The rest of us are just men that fight each other to the death for a crime long forgotten."

The Milken have also hieratic duties. They were Protectors of the Artapherana and Conservators of the graves of the Anactari in the Valley of the Kings and of course Curogane's grave upon the Efirhall. The Milken Priests are honoured first in celebrations and dwell inside Avá's Temple.
Return to the top

Government. Since the Milken took up arms on behalf of their country they were considered citizens. So, they gained formally the title of Helcrani. They were allowed to have personal property and to live without a family to serve (although this was considered by the Milken to be most unpleasant). Anactar Ogygor set Browniecide as a criminal offence punished just like homicide. Milken however refused to accept a form of representation in the Gathering of the Houses, because they considered as "internal affair" any problem occurring between them and their family and refused to let "outsiders deal with it", as Mys Ironblade of the Sostrian Fratra once stated.
Return to the top

Production/Trade. Milken are also very helpful in farming. They cultivate the land and take care of trees all over the Efirhal and have a reputation of being master gardeners. Furthermore, many Milken, especially the Nerters, are working as artisans, sculptors and goldsmiths because they are extremely capable with their hands, especially when doing very detailed work, comparable with their dwarven masters. The Styreian Milken are excellent tamers, scouts and hunters. The combination of elven and dwarven skills have rendered great results.
Return to the top

Natural Resources. The same as the Helcrani.
Return to the top

Holidays, Festivals and Observances. The Milken celebrate together with the Helcrani family they live with.
Return to the top

gfx gfx
gfx
gfx
THE AGE OF MYTHS
(YEARS 3.400 B.S. - 1.655 B.S.)
1695 b.S. Crumbled Leaf's Comment
In the Aohu'o Hawkfeather band, Crumbled Leaf, the local shaman, makes an offhand comment that "The spirits of rock, tree, and stream will never abandon us as long as the sun shines".

THE AGE OF AWAKENING
(YEARS 1.655 B.S. - 822 B.S.)
1648 b.S. Capturing of the Hawkfeather Brownie Band
The elven ship "Helnaura" anchors off from Akdor after the Year of Darkness has ended. The entire Hawkfeather band, now numbering just over eighty individuals, hides themselves among the supplies on the landing boats, and so manages to find hiding places aboard ship. Weeks later, the ship's cook, noticing supplies missing and suspecting rats, searches for the culprit and finds the Brownies. He realises that they are sentient beings, so they are brought before the captain Macharean, member of the League (a secret elven society trying to find out the best way for a harmonical rule of the world). He spares their lives and brings them to Artemidor, the inspirator and leader of the League.
  

1647 b.S. The Brownie Co-operation with the League
The captured Hawkfeather Brownies found on a boat coming from Akdor are presented to Artemidor, the leader of the League, and are meant to be the solution to a problem he is facing. By that time the Council of the League has decided to proceed with an experiment to determine whether the human race will be able to bring harmony to Sarvonia as the leading element of a co-operation of the races.

As a symbol both of the experiment and the Tree of Life the League decides to plant the Artapherana, the Trees of the Elements, dedicated each to one of the main races. The place of the plantation was found a while ago and the necessary arrangements to prevent settlement of the area are already made. However, the trees need several centuries to grow to their full size and, until then, someone has to take care of them until the humans will settle in this area. The Brownies, with their small size, and now used to living and digging underground, can easily accomplish this task.

So Artemidor asks the Brownies for their co-operation in the quest. The Brownies, by this time thoroughly demoralised by their apparent abandonment by the spirits, and by their long living in hiding underground, are quick to grasp at hope, even if, for the moment, it is someone else's hope. They eventually come to share wholeheartedly in the elves' dream, and even to worship the elven Goddess, Avá the Beautiful.

The years that follow the Brownies are "educated" by the elves so as to be ready, when the time will finally come. This process is so deep that they adopt the elven language, Styrásh.
  

1600 b.S. The Planting of the Artapherana
The Artapherana are planted upon a hill in an island at the north-western border of Erpheronia and Centorauria and the Brownies are put in charge as protectors of the trees. Those gifted in Brownie Life Magic learn to bend and adapt the holy light deriving from the Artapherana, tricking the eyes of distant observers and making them entirely invisible outside the hill.

The next centuries the Brownies take care of the trees and often welcome elven visitors who provid them with lots of knowledge and information about the process of the experiment.
  

850 b.S. The League's first Contacts with the Humans
The League tries to re-introduce the elven civilisation to the humans. Among the first they contact are peaceful villagers living in the valley between Salsair and the High Fores. Elves from Goltherlon will visit them and familiarise them with the elven culture. Prince Tacunija from Goltherlon is the most important of them. Moreover, it will be interesting to monitor their reaction to the next human-elven war.

THE AGE OF THE BLOOD
(YEARS 822 B.S. - 50 B.S.)
803 b.S. The League choosing of the Erpheronians
The Artapherana Trees have long ago developed to their full size but still no human tribe can be found to match the criteria of the experiment. In this year the Brownies are informed that the tribe is finally found. It will be the Erpheronians.
  

800 b.S. The Goltherrhim Ag'rán Tacunija utters the Curse of Fire
The heir to the Goltherrhim regency, the Ag'rán Tacunija, is murdered by Kyranian rogues on the foothills of the Hèckra volcano, while travelling from the Goltherlon to the Vontron. As he dies, Tacunija curses his killers and their people always to fight among each other and to be rewarded for the crime by fire. He is quoted: "May my blood haunt you and your children, until Avá's Dream is over. No peace will ever reign you and your people and always will you fight among each other but never will you get rid of yourselves. And let fire be my witness and your reward for thy crime."

These dramatic words should become the "Curse of Fire", sealed by three sudden explosions erupting from the Hèckra. This is said to symbolize that the Curse would be fulfilled three times. Bromir, a small Kyranian boy, witnesses the whole event and relates the curse to those that would hear.
Kyranians become "Helcrani"
The massacre against the peace-loving elf Tacunija and his men triggers a series of retaliatory elven attacks against the Helcrani, who burn their villages and turn to the Eastern Fores Mountains for salvation after two of their settlements are destroyed. The Curse is fulfilled for the first time.

The dwarves, who live there, welcome the Helcrani, because they are enemies with the elves. There they build five villages: Sostra, Heleroth, Ahaiwana, Menegula and Codomma. The area was named Helcrah ("Firedamn") and they take the name Helcrani ("Firedamned").
The League's Choosing of the Helcrani
The Helcrani decide to seek refuge in a safer place but the League fails to guide them to the selected place and they resort to the High Fores for salvation where they accepted dwarves inside their society. After counceling the League decides to change the subject of the experiment, abandoning the Erpheronians, and chooses the Helcrani as the worst human tribe for the experiment. The Brownies are informed of these facts.
  

730 b.S. A Plague strikes Helcrah
A plague strikes Helcrah and Goltherlon and most of the humans, many dwarves and even elves follow Helronn and seek refuge in Centorauria. The Centoraurian king Arpalann gives the Helcrani permission to settle at the north of his kingdom as long as they swear allegiance to him and live as his vassals.

As the Helcrani reach the coast, the Brownies release their magic, revealing the trees and the refugees are guided by the light to its source. There they find the Artapherana and the Brownies, whom they name Milken ("small ones").
Founding of Milkengrad, the "City of Wonders"
Milkengrad is founded in Efirhal Island ("Firehill") around the hill with the same name. The name of the city derives from the Milken Brownies, who guide the Helcrani following instructions of the elven League - "Milkengrad" translates literally to "City of the Small Ones" according to the Brownies, while the humans claim that it actually means "City of Wonders". At any rate, from now on the Helcrani will share their history with the Brownies.

On top of the Efirhal lie the Artapherana, unique trees that symbolize the four elements, around which the Curonesta (the palace) is built. The Helcrani are organized in 7 fractions, called fratrae. Five of them are human and named after the villages and one for the elves (Styran) and the Dwarves (Nerterian). Milkengrad is also known by the Helcrani as "The City" in contrast with the settlements of Helcrah which are referred to as "The Villages".

Soon the city flourishes under enlightened guidance. Many monuments are built, the most famous among them the Temple of Avá, the only human temple ever dedicated to Avá the Beautiful. During the next decades an important merchant fleet is developed triggering tension with Erpheronia. Erpheronian attempts to conquer Centorauria are unsuccessful and the Helcrani are distinguished as the main Centoraurian strike force.
THE AGE OF REBUILDING
(YEARS 1.062 A.S. - 1.144 A.S.)
ca. 1.100 New Vale Brownie Trade and New Thinking
The news of other Brownie groups surviving like the Llaoihrr have managed is enough to begin a revolution in thinking. It is obvious that Brownies can indeed exist and live without the protection of the Vale. Explorers set out once more to look for friendly settlements and to map the land around their Vale. The Brownies' natural inventiveness takes on the challenge, experimenting with ways of travelling across the many furlongs of land. From this, the Arrowhead Geese Squadron is formed, a group of Skydivers who train and look after a dozen or so of the birds. These are large enough to carry goods for trade.

Another shock occurs when the Llaoihrr discover the Milken Brownies around 1400 a.S. This tribe does not and has not worshiped the spirits for hundreds of years, another thing which was considered essential to Brownie survival. It changes their worship in fairly subtle ways – no longer do the Llaoihrr believe that not paying tribute will lead to disaster and death, but they do still think that the spirits can and do help them with their daily life. Someone who gives thanks for the gifts around them will receive more in the future.
gfx


See also Aohu'o (Akdorian tribe), Birni Brownies (ancient tribe), Brownies (the race), Drasil (tree creatures), Keekoo the Deliverer (Brownie hero), Helcrani (human tribe), Llaoihrr (Vale Brownies), Milkengrad (city), Memnoor (Void Brownie tribe), Milken (Milken Brownies), Rat Brownies, The League (elven society)
   

Information provided by Greybark View Profile and Curgan View Profile