Hello, friends! This is a legend from the world of Storm Raven. For the Toastmasters group that I’m in, my next presentation is to tell a folk tale. However, the requirements do not say that it must be an existing story from our world, so I wrote my own! I hope you enjoy it.
How many of you are familiar with the Shattered Sea? None of you? Well, the Shattered Sea is a large expanse of jagged islands to the north, scattered over an area almost as large as our own continent. On a map, it looks as if a giant smashed a clay pot and tossed the pieces into the water. A web of treacherous channels carves through the islands. Lurking in those waters are marauders, waiting to attack anyone who ventures too close. However, that part of the world was not always that way.
Many generations ago, long before our great nation existed, the area of the Shattered Sea was occupied by a full continent, which was attached to our own. In those days, that landmass was united under a single massive empire, whose name has been lost to the ages. Back in that time, the gods had gifted humanity with the power to shape their world in all kinds of miraculous ways.
They could create fire as hot as any forge to make steel far stronger than anything we can make. They could bring water from the very earth in a drought, allowing them to feed their populous cities. They could even command the wind itself to cross the oceans with unheard of speed. With their command of the elements, they constructed massive buildings and monuments. People prospered and flourished across the empire. Even the workers that made it all possible lived happily and comfortably.
One day, one of those workers, named Corina, was gifted with more power than any other worker had before. However, instead of demonstrating gratitude for her gift and using it for the good of the empire, she decided that she still didn’t have enough. Corina seduced one of the people that had given her her new abilities, managing to convince him that they were in love with each other. Together, they fled into the northern part of the realm. There, she traveled from place to place, turning workers against the generosity of the empire. She spread the idea that she and the other workers still didn’t have enough. She drew others into her web of greed and finally led them to rebel. The empire never saw them coming, so the workers were able to rapidly take control of the northern half of the empire.
Eventually, the empire rallied and held the rebels to the northern half of the land. Thousands died on both sides of the war. Some within the empire even turned against their homeland. As the deaths mounted on both sides, with no end in sight, the people of the empire turned to the gods to ask for help in ending the conflict. The gods answered these prayers, but not in a way that the people expected. First, they struck the northern half of the empire with a tremendous amount of power, smashing it and pushing the pieces far from the southern half. This created the Shattered Sea as we know it today. Next, the gods took back the gifts that they had given to humanity, deeming them unworthy of wielding such power. The gods’ punishment had crushed the rebellion and killed Corina, but those who were left had to scrape in the dirt to survive. The old empire fell and eventually, new nations rose from the ashes.
Now, we pray to gods that, so far, refuse to listen in the hope that they may decide to one day be merciful and raise them up again. We must also be vigilant in case another with the ambition of Corina arises to lead us away from the path that the gods would want us to follow.