Santhalan Bedtime Stories   
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Introduction. The 'Dreadful Orcen Mage and the Brave Boy' is a tale told primarily by the storytellers amongst the Black Butterfly Rovers around the campfires of an evening. It teaches that all people, regardless of race, tribe or creed are worthy of friendship and kindness, rather than fear. A particular focus is on the outcast in society, especially as the Black Butterfly Rovers are themselves outcast. Some wandering storytellers have been overheard telling stories that are very similar to this, leading to speculation that different tribes and perhaps even races have their own version of this story. The incremental repetition is a feature of this type of story and it helps to reinforce the message of the story. Depending on the popularity of the story, the audience has been known to get so caught up in the story, that they join in on the repititive parts.

This version of the story refers to the early years of Ximax and the move of the Orcish Society of Enlightenment to the city. As most viewed orcs as little more than savage and blood thirsty beasts at that time, this story was set against that backdrop. The society, in time, became the Volkek-Oshra and these orcs became valued members of the Ximax community. The gold medallion that is given to Martyn is crafted by the Volkek-Oshra orcs to show that they are of that tribe.


 long time ago in the city of Ximax, there was a terrible orcen mage that lived by herself in the catacombs beneath the magic city. No one had actually seen the orcen mage, but all parents warned their children about it and said “If you are naughty, the terrible orcen mage will come to you from the catacombs and take you back there and eat you.” This was indeed an unenlightened time.

This terrible orcen mage had half of her face burnt away and wore a golden mask. Around her neck she had a necklace with the skulls of children she had taken away previously. She also ate Ximax cats and Ximax rats to give her power. All the children were very afraid except for one, a brave boy named Martyn Ravolyn.

“Hi, my name is Martyn Ravolyn,” he would say, “And I’m not afraid of anyone or anything!” He wasn’t even sure that he believed the story, when he heard it, he would say, “To tell the truth I’m not afraid of that golden faced orcen mage. If I meet her face-to-face, I know for sure that I’ll be brave.”

At those times, even as it is today, turning fourteen was a big deal and called for a celebration. Martyn’s parents were holding a big party for him, and asked him who he wanted to invite. He wanted to invite one special guest, when they were asked who that was, he replied, “I would like to invite the terrible orcen mage. I have never seen her and I would like to.”

“No one has ever seen her, there’s no way to find her,” his parents said.

But Martyn headed for the catacombs beneath the city and began looking for the golden faced orcen mage.

“She must live around here somewhere,” he said, “To tell the truth, I’m not afraid of that golden faced orcen mage. If I meet her face-to-face, I know for sure that I’ll be brave.”

He came up to a strange looking well-shaped construct in the catacomb and looked inside, “Yoo-hoo, is anyone there?”

An orc, her face covered with a golden mask, and wearing a necklace with what seemed to be skulls on it rushed out and said, “I am here!”

Now, Martyn was startled at the sight of her, but he stood still, and he said to himself, "To tell the truth, I’m not afraid of that golden faced orcen mage. If I meet her face-to-face, I know for sure that I’ll be brave.”

To Martyn, the orcess didn’t look angry, she looked frightened more than anything, “What do you want?” she asked in voice that sounded frightened.

“I’m having a party and I want you to come,” he said.

The orcess couldn’t believe her ears, “Are you really inviting me to your party?” she asked.

Martyn nodded and saw that she was crying, “Why are you crying?” he asked her kindly.

“In all of my years of living in the catacombs, ever since the accident that burnt my face and killed my brothers and sisters,” she touched the mask that covered her face and the necklace around her neck, “No one has ever been kind to me. I would love to go to your party. Come in here and I’ll give you a gift.”

Unfrightened, Martyn did as she asked, and she gave him a medallion with flames carved into both sides. He put it around his neck, and together, they went back to the part. People came from all over Ximax to see the not-so dreadful orcen mage and the brave little boy and to celebrate with them.

The amulet with the flames became a symbol of the Volkrek Oshra, and of their friendship. As Martyn grew older he became known for being a wise and powerful mage and whenever people saw him, they said, “Kindness and friendship always wins out over fear.”


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 Date of last edit 20th Fallen Leaf 1669 a.S.

Bedtime Story written by Deklitch Hardin View Profile