Category: Book of Mammoth

The Invasion of the Slothen Horde Upon Triph

Excerpts:  Part Five of the Ongoing Saga

It had become apparent to Mammoths everywhere that the Great One had not kept his promise, for since Spidra and her children rose to the surface and brought death unto the Mammothian population, other creatures began to appear and claim for themselves land that had once known only the paws of the Pleistocene Epoch giants.

Mammoth populations began to dwindle and disperse, and while they maintained their dominance for many ages, it was clear that such things would not last forever.  And so, it came.

During Uglarth II's reign, the Mammoths were laid seige upon by a Slothen horde from the East.  Uglarth's scouts had long known of the presence of giant three-toed sloths in what was then called the Eyorn Region - the area of the world we know as southern Asia - but had failed to recognize the vast numbers Sloths had accumulated in a short period of time.  Indeed.  The Sloths were led by a fierce commander known as Bradelburn Und-Myraen, famed for his bloodlust and the slaughter of a large roving band of Moa birds that, heretofore, would have proven far too powerful for any Slothen Army to overcome.

Und-Myraen attacked Uglarth and his Mammoths at their capital city located on the outskirts of the Endrögen Flats.  The city was called Triph, which is the Mammoth word for "tusk."

The attack took nearly four days to execute, as Sloths are extremely slow creatures, able only to subdue their enemies by wrapping their arms around a victim and refusing to let go until the mark's will to live has sufficiently dissipated.  It was in this manner that they attacked Triph and took the city in the most devastating Pyrrhic victory since the War of the Mastodon, in which 800,000 Mastodons died in a single day while leaving but 40,000 Mammoths in the once major city of Ortumanga.  It had been a victory for Mammoth-kind, but one that set the species back one hundred years.

Following is an account written by one of Uglarth's generals after the seige on Triph:

The Sloths have defeated us once and for all in our glorious capital.  Woe unto Uglarth's line that has been broken by the savage beasts from Eyorn, and a thousand curses upon Und-Myraen  for the death he has brought upon our kind.  The entire city has been destroyed and it lies in ruins, decorated now only by the carcasses of my brethren.  My son and I escaped along with a few others, and we are now roaming the ice flats in northern Galp near Prakash.

I could not understand it at first.  Our legions fought bravely and killed the first wave of Sloths quite easily, but they began to appear in greater numbers carrying no weapons.  Slowly, they wrapped their arms around one Mammoth and then another and another until our entire legion had been subdued.  I cannot fathom why our brave soldiers ceased to fight as the Horde moved into Triph and killed nearly every innocent civilian.  It is my fear that the Sloths, and Und-Myraen the Scoundrel, in particular, possess some form of Magick unbeknownst to Mammoths, for it looked as if my brothers had been placed in a trance - as if they had given up entirely.  And then Igrak's Breath left them.

It is devilry.  There is a great Evil in this world now, and I know of no Mammoth that can combat Bradelburn Und-Myraen.  We are finished.

Igrak send us a savior.

- Wirmthorn, General, Uglarth's Second Legion

And so the Mammoths were banished from their kingdom.  Igrak heard no cries, and the Great One appeared to laugh at his creatures' plight.  There had been a prophecy during the Dark Ages that, had the Mammoths paid any heed, would have prepared them for the Slothen Invasion that shook the cornerstones of Mammothian society, and, likewise, they would have remembered that there remained one, final hope for the preservation of their species.

The writings of Glorm's father, however, went unread for another generation, during which time the maleficent Bradelburn Und-Myraen crowned himself King Sloth and forged an empire that would stand unblemished for hundreds of years.

The Unfortunate Plights of Magra and Kulgath Muil

Excerpts:  Part Four of the Ongoing Saga

Love is a heart that beats still, though it has been lanced upon a tusk.  Mammothian Proverb

Shrew, you shrew, once conniving, shall be torn in twain and made to serve an evil master, acid-woolled and hard of reign.  Mammothian Prophecy

The first great Mammoth lovers were famed among their sizable kin for unwilting devotion and their contributions to Mammothian Theatre as a roving duo of unmatched talent, cherished as gems among the community.  These were Magra the Harlequin Queen and Kulgath Muil the Orator.  Together, they traveled from the outskirts of the Kajik Mountains and the border towns along the River Braor (modern-day Turkey) to the metropolis of Kinski (our Alaska) located at the far end of the Ice Crossing.  One hundred years after what came to be known as Glorm's Folly, they roamed unmolested through the snows putting on carnival shows.

Magra would adorn herself in strange masks, often resembling the many creatures that were beginning to encroach upon formerly exclusive Mammothian holdings.  Children shrieked with glee and terror when she donned the visage of a Sloth, at this time a relatively new biological outcropping.  Her tusks protruded from behind the mask and gave her a ferocious, otherworldly appearance as she loped slowly, trunk swaying and brushing up against the young ones who looked more frightened than the rest so that they would jump and crawl underneath their mothers.

All the while, Kulgath told fantastic stories of Highland Raids and the original Mammothian Lore, for before he had turned toward the rogue theatre, Kulgath had been well-respected as an Oral Historian and Loremaster.  The tales he told in a deep, baritone voice that pitched and swelled, relaying images of great battles and hard-fought migrations made perilous by great Sea Monsters, one hundred feet long and boasting seven rows of razor teeth, pack hunters of newly-infested oceans.  His descriptions were so rich that even Magra, from time to time, lost her place and missed a step or two.  This was rarely noticed.  During the oral crescendo of each story, all focus was upon Kulgath just as Magra commanded the most attention during her pantomimes of battles and other such spectacles.  Here too, overcome by Magra's graceful stomping, Kulgath would trail off, and his heart would seize up momentarily.  The feeling was referred to by Mammoths as the Lancing, a sensation beheld by those whose sentiments were pure.  In this regard, the roaming thespians were rare.

For seventy years, Magra and Kulgath Muil wandered, being careful always to pay their yearly respects at Endrögen Flats.  It was at this festival that they put on the largest performance, aided by younglings from Braormer's School of Theatre in Triph.  Why the school had been named after a notorious inseminator, no one knew.

Before the performance, a camp was made, and spirits distributed among the festival-goers.  Mammoths who refused to partake in the worship ceremonies were banished.  There existed no form of death penalty in their culture, a tradition that remained intact until the Age of Peril.  On the eve of their fifty-eighth production, Magra and Kulgath were sleeping peacefully with their trunks entwined.  During the night, a battalion of Bandit Shrews snuck into the tent silently and drugged the lovers so as not to disturb their slumber.  They proceed to gnaw feverishly at the Mammoths' tusks and tear the wool from their very skin.  The Shrews even scarred their trunks so badly that, by morning, Magra and Kulgath were scabbed together and drenched in blood.

The day grew late, and as the Mammoths were making preparations for the festivities, a howl came from the Harlequin Queen's tent.  A crowd gathered round, and the creatures that emerged from the tent were not recognized by their brethren.

The production was canceled.  Magra and Kulgath Muil retreated into the wastes and were never heard from again, but word reached them by way of a Tundra Moa that Mammoths had since declared Shrews mortal enemies of Mammothkind and had bemoaned the loss of their beloved performers.  A feast had been held in their honor, and there were rumblings that a party was to be sent forth by King Müth himself to find and bear hence the disgraced couple.

Magra and Kulgath sighed and said that they did not wish to return to their kin, that they were happy living in freakish solitude from the rest of the world and that Peace had been delivered unto them with great efficacy.

The Legend of Glorm and Spidra and How Death Came to Find Mammoths

Excerpts:  Part Three of the Ongoing Saga

Woe unto the fallen
Who in the tundra freezes
Woe unto the Mammoth
Who marches where he pleases
Woe unto the Westerly
Warm winds like Demon's Breath
Woe unto the Mammoth
Who marries himself with Death

Mammoth Traditional


DURING THE THIRD AGE OF SKOPJA'S REIGN, THE FIRST MAMMOTH DIES UNDER THE TUNDRA IN A LAND KNOWN AS ENDRÖGEN FLATS.

The salt flats had been famed by all as a place of great mysticism, and some even suggested that buried beneath the permafrost lay the Heart of Igrak himself.  At night, Mammoths gathered to witness the strange, red glow that emanated from the flats as it spiraled upward into the heavens.  By morning, the light would fade, and the crowd would disperse, mumbling prayers of thanks and praise to Igrak and the Great One alike.

For many years, Mammoths made such pilgrimages to Endrögen.  They came from every corner of the globe bringing with them offerings of food and large rocks, but the source of power never revealed itself to the pilgrims despite their pleas.  Instead, they stared at the red lights and stomped their offerings into the ice until the plants became green poultices.  This was the proper sacrificial ritual according to Mammoth Law.

It was upon the Flats of Endrögen that came the first Mammoth death, for though Igrak had been rent apart during the Creation, he did not die.  Rather, it is Igrak's energy that binds us all to one another and to the rest of the universe, for the Mammoth Dancer (as he came to be called) was granted eternal life by the Great One and so shall live thusly, but the same cannot be said of poor, young Glorm, the high priest's son.

One night, after all the pilgrims had left, Glorm stayed behind.  The red glow had gone as well, but Glorm had marked the spot of its ascension with his tusks the previous evening, anticipating to return and dig out the source of this strange Mammothian power.  And so, he did.  Glorm dug his tusks into the ice and began to writhe, moving his head like a shovel.  So vigorously did he work that he began to bleed around his mouth.  The roots of his tusks became sore, and his eyes were wild with pain and fright, for Glorm soon hit upon a small, underground cavern, the top of which was not but eight feet below the earth.

He slithered down into the hole and muttered, "Echthelion likthalid pren Igrak."  [Protect your child, Igrak.]  His feet hit the hard, cold stone of a cave, and as soon as this happened, a bright, red light filled the immense cavern.  From an outlet on the far side of the chamber ran a small stream, and the rocks below shimmered in the brilliant light such that Glorm had to squint in order to see.  He heard singing from within the cave but could not discern its source.

Glorm wandered aimlessly from cavern to cavern finding nothing in the red, glaring light until finally he grew tired and set his haunches against a wall.  He sat and nursed his sore tusks, and by now, he had lost his sense of direction.  There was no telling from whence he entered this place.

Suddenly, a small, eight-legged creature no bigger than Glorm's foot appeared in front of him, which startled him to no small extent, for all Mammoths had been taught that their kingdom was to remain free of all Others.  The creature's belly was marked by a strange red shape that Glorm didn't recognize.  At once, he spoke in his native tongue, "What are you, little one, and why have to come into the realm of Igrak and his children?  You are a most unwelcome intruder."

The creature blinked at Glorm through a hundred tiny eyeballs and hissed, "I am the Queen Spidra, and you are most unwelcome here, Glorm son of Drymbal.  These caverns are treacherous, sweet Mammoth, and the Heart has become full."

Glorm's eyes widened.  When he tried to speak, his words came out a whisper, "The Heart of Igrak?"

"The very.  Come, I will show you."

Spidra led Glorm through a web of tunnels and passageways, her legs clicking against the stones as the Mammoth lumbered along behind thankful that the brilliant red glow had subsided.  At last, they came to a cavern, larger than any other in the cave, and in the center of the room lay a large Mammoth heart.

"After all these years," Glorm said, "Igrak's heart beats."

Spidra laughed coldly.  "It is swollen, dear Mammoth."

At the moment Spidra said this, the heart burst open, and the cave was filled again with the red glow.  Only then did Glorm see thousands of red bellies pouring out, reflecting the light every which way.  Spidra's children swarmed upon the high priest's son in a matter of seconds, devouring him.

All the while, the queen laughed with a tyrannical glee and cried out to her children, "Out through the hole poor Glorm has made for us!  To the surface!"

And this is how the first Mammoth died upon the Earth.  And this is how death came to find all Mammoths such that when they are small or weak or outnumbered, a child of Spidra comes to gorge her belly on Flesh.

In the Beginning

Excerpts:  Part Two of the Ongoing Saga

In the beginning, there were mammoths, and there lived no other creatures upon this earth. Nay. Sloths had not yet brought lethargy into the world. No fish did swim in primordial oceans nor did any bird dot any sky, and in the vast, empty wastes of the planet did the Mammoths roam without restriction or fear.

It was then, when the Sun set for the first time, that King Eldrid Mammoth spake unto his subjects and recited to them the passages given him by the Supreme Being. "This planet was given to us by the Great One..." he said as an excited murmur rippled through the gathering crowd of woolly beasts, "...so that we might rule it justly in isolation and live in harmony as Mammoths and never fear invasion by those that are Other than us. We shall never be forced to commingle with any other beast, and never shall anything that is not Mammoth tread upon the dirt nor consume vegetation nor procreate according to the Great One's design."

King Eldred Mammoth spake so and stopped. Throughout the land there was a great din as the Mammoths cheered and grew joyous in their supremacy. Hamish Mammoth, son of Fortinbras the Skewer, laid before them a feast (being the culinary superior of the others) and Myla, his sister, raised her trunk and sounded a call of celebration that reverberates in the earth to this day. As later commented upon by Ulfungrian Mammoth the Just and Tender Loony, the festivities were "manglewart bint fiddlechabronian einthestlebrain," which, translated into the Common Tongue, means, "very sensible in light of the circumstances."

Creation: The Legend of Igrak

Excerpts:  Part One of the Ongoing Saga

This is a common bedtime story told to Mammoth children.  Stories such as these were passed down through the generations orally, often being set to percussion or theatrical displays during festivals and other celebrations.

Igrak was born into the formless waste of the universe.  Mired in primordial obscurity, he had little with which to occupy himself in those days of emptiness and cosmic non-existence.  For milliennia, he existed in utter loneliness, floating freely through the dark expanse of  space until one day, he cried out into the dark,  "Rescue me."

At first, he did not hear a response.  Space was as black and bereft of life as  it ever had been, and Igrak grew sad and  pondered his plight  having hoped that a voice of some kind might have greeted him, although it was foolish to think.  As he sat and thought, nightmares began to seize him.  He closed his eyes and scratched his head with his enormous trunk trying all the while to rid himself of the strange visions.  He saw something orange  - something of such ferocious light that he felt pain in every part of his body, and some say that, though Igrak was quite safe and quite sound, he actually smelt singed wool.  Shapes began to form in his dreams.  There were tremendous spheres and oblong bits of rock.  He saw trees and vast oceans, some of methane and some of water.

But Igrak did not know any of this, as we know it.  He knew only that the visions enthralled him, but he did not know where they came from, nor did he understand them.  He dreamt for days, until his mind was tired and entirely confused, and again, he cried out, "Rescue me."

This time, a faint whisper crawled through the blackness, slowly but with purpose, and  found its way into Igrak's ear.   "Dance," said the voice.

Igrak was confused.  He did not know what it meant to dance, but as soon as he had passed the voice off as cosmic gibberish, his legs began moving in peculiar ways.  They shifted from side to side, and they stomped, and they drew circles, and while Igrak was seized by a fit of uncontrollable dancing, the space around him began to ripple and tear.  He stomped  and a great cloud of dust rose from underneath his foot.  It began to commingle with the other dust clouds Igrak's dance was creating, and suddenly, the particles took the form of a rock.

Igrak laughed as he had never before, and the great guttural expulsion echoed across the waste, and suddenly, a great ball of white light appeared in front of him.  He saw planets forming in the warmth of the light and begin circling its source, and on these planets, he saw the canyons and lakes that had been present in his dreams.  He continued dancing, able now to control his movements, and he continued laughing.  Igrak laughed and laughed and laughed.  He began to run faster and stomp harder, and every bit of black space he touched sprang up into some fantastic shape or produced an indescribably brilliant sensation.

Igrak did not know what to make of any of it.  He could not help but be ecstatic, though, for now there was something.  In the blink of an eye, the formlessness of the empty waste was giving way to a beautiful array of colors, shapes, sounds, and feelings.

Eventually, the dancing began to affect less and less space.  Igrak looked about him, and as far as he could see, there were planets and nebula.   Comets whizzed by his head.  He had never been happier in his life, and he began to laugh again.

He laughed so hard that his body exploded and dotted the sky with huge white orbs of  light so scorching they would consume anything that drew near, and it was on that day the first Mammoth was put on this planet under the first star that appeared as Igrak danced.   It is called fromin, which means Lightfoot, for after Igrak exploded, his paws remained and were pulled in by our star in gratitude for having been created.

It is Igrak who gave light to the world.  In his desperation, he had received aid from a voice, and it is written in many places that the voice Igrak heard was his own and that he was the cause of his misery and - likewise - his mirth.