The Day I Earned My True Name - Part 3
In ancient times, Furbolg tribes of Northern Kalimdor practiced a tradition which required the young men to prove themselves in accomplishing great deeds in order to earn their true names.
Continued from: The Day I Earned My True Name - Part 2
Like the previous 10 years, the first full moon of the new year was soon upon us. Soon the clans would start preparations and their ugly hunts. We decided with Simerrib not to meet as frequently, in order not to draw any attention upon us.
This year, the battles between the clans were fiercer than ever, resulting in more blood and deaths. A sorrowful mourning had already descended upon the island. The day of the sacrifice was approaching, and all clans wanted to be ready for that, as they did not want to be destroyed by Kurkren.
Unwillingly, I was having to join the battles in order to protect my clan and my mother. I wish I did not have to, but I was still not able to find an answer to what my father and N'azgilub had meant, I still did not know how to put an end to all this madness. By each passing day, I was growing into a stronger warrior but what meaning would it have had if my life was not spent to bring peace among Furbolgs?
The day before the day of the sacrifice, our clan still had not found anyone for the horrible act. Kurzerub gave the task of finding someone for the sacrifice to an experienced group of warriors which left the village early in the morning. I and a group of other young warriors were ordered to go and guard the east path another of our group was using for their attacks towards one of the eastern Furbolg villages on the island. I was leading the group and we did a good job until a crowded group from a northern village ambushed us. They were more than us in numbers and they had better positioning, so we did not show much progress in fighting them back. We fought for hours, continued even after the darkness fell. Some of my best friends were slain that night...
Just as I was moving to protect one of the wounded, I got hit by a large spear in the leg. I slowly fell onto the ground. With the exhaustion of the long fight and the incredible pain of the spearhead within my muscles, I passed out.
When I regained consciousness, it was still dark but I did not hear anything, any fights going on around. The spear was still in my leg but the pain was not as terrible as it first hit. I removed it gently and wrapped my leg to stop the bleeding. Once I took care of myself, I quickly checked my friends around me, they were all dead. It was not only a dark but also a sad night for me. After silently whispering each of their names with a short prayer we make for our fallen, I took their necklaces to bring them back to their families and headed back to our village.
I was having difficulty walking due to my wounded leg, and since it was a dark night with the moon covered behind dark clouds, it took me long to get back to our village.
When I approached our village, I saw from a distance that my clan had gathered around the central fire, which was now burning as violently as it has never been, and I saw a blurry shadow on the other side of the village. It was Kurkren's Spirit. I then realized that I had spent the whole day passed out and today was the day of the sacrifice. Before I reached the village, Kurkren's Spirit turned back and went into the darkness it came from. The sacrifice was over.
At that moment, a sudden thought hurt my heart like the stab of a blind dagger. I continued to walk towards the fire hastily now. The crowd around it was seemingly relieved by having fulfilled the order of Kurkren for another year.
When I got near the fire, our leader Kurzerub saw me and told the crowd to make way for me, then my mother saw me and ran to me and started crying as she saw my wound. It was when I was telling them how we were ambushed and how I survived, that I saw something in the fire. Something metallic, something shiny... it was the star necklace I had given to Simerrib at our wedding.
"Nooooooo!.. Simerrib, no!.. my love!.. my wife!.." I shouted till the last air droplet got out of my lungs and I fell onto my knees, covering my face with my hands. I felt like my heart was tearing apart, I cried silently... I had lost my love, I had lost my only hope to bring peace to our people...
When I stood up, everyone was looking at me with surprised faces, in a way asking me what was that all about. I had no time to answer them nor had I the desire to make explanations. My love, my wife, my hope was killed and it was done by my clan, by my family, but the real responsible for her death was the thing that had now disappeared in the darkness.
Grabbing my spear from the ground, I looked towards the direction Kurkren's Spirit disappeared into the forest for a moment. Then I turned back to my clan and shouted in tears:
"The girl you sacrificed today was named Simerrib... she was my wife... She was my only hope to bring our people together... I will go now, to make sure that the beast who caused us so much pain and suffering will see no other dawn. Join me if you want the same and send for all the clans to join us if they want to send Kurkren back to whence it came from once and for all and put an end to all this chaos and madness we have been weltering in for generations."
I rushed towards the forest, without looking back to see what my clan's reaction was or if anyone was following me. I did not want to lose Kurkren's Spirit's track. The full moon was now fully visible, coming from behind the clouds, which helped me see the shaking trees far to the north. I kept running towards north.
At the end of the forest, there was an open area with no trees, and just to the north of this area was a hill. Kurkren's Spirit had walked towards it and then disappeared. I was not going to stop there, so I ran towards that hill. At the edge of the hill, there was a big cavern opening, that I don't remember seeing before. It must have been turning visible only when Kurkren's Spirit came out of its nest to visit our villages for spreading terror and taking sacrifices.
I approached the entrance as it started to close. At the entrance of the cavern, I saw someone, who seemed to be casting a spell to keep the entrance open. It was N'azgilub. When he saw me, he said "Hurry my son, I can't hold it any longer. Take this stone, you will know what to do with it. What you will do will have a price for you but you have to do it for your people if you want to bring peace to these lands. Now get inside and end what you have started!" and placed a small, glowing red stone into my palm. I did as he said and entered the cavern. After I stepped in, the entrance was closed.
The cavern I was now standing in was a huge and horrifying place with foul energies flowing around. I could hear the screams of all the spirits that were sacrificed for or killed by this beast for countless generations, I could see the shadows of terrified faces floating around from all races that I know of. Gathering all my courage, I followed the tracks of Kurkren's Spirit to the back of the cavern.
When I turned right at the last corner, I saw it there, far at the end of the cavern, in a huge chamber. Kurkren, the unmerciful beast from our ancient legends, in its physical form, was sleeping on the ground. Responsible for all the deaths and pain among my people, responsible for separating my people even further, he was laying there with all his grandness. In his physical form, he was much larger and he looked much more terrifying. I had no chance fighting him, not all Furbolgs combined did we have a chance against him.
Without making any sound, I quickly inspected inside of the chamber with my eyes. I was trying to find something that would give me a clue about what to do with the stone N'azgilub had given me. Moments later, I saw a red glow behind Kurkren's gigantic body. Holding my breath, I slowly moved around him and saw a huge red crystal coming out of the ground at the far end of the chamber.
As I came closer to the crystal, both the crystal and the stone in my hand started to glow brighter. I touched the crystal, instantly filling with a feeling of unimaginable energy. I was still myself, but I felt stronger in a different way, full of life energy. When I further inspected the crystal, I noticed a cavity on it, with the exact same shape as the stone in my hand. I knew what I needed to do.
Just as I was placing the stone into its cavity, I heard something that moved behind me. It was Kurkren, who had awoken when I touched the crystal and had started staring at me trying to understand what was going on. I shouted towards him:
"Kurkren! You took my love from me, you took the hope from our people. I have come here for you, to avenge Simerrib and all my people who were sacrificed and killed because of you. You will take lives from us no longer, you will see the dawn no longer."
He made a deafening roar that almost caused me to drop the stone in my hand, and immediately after his roar he charged towards me. But I acted faster and placed the stone into the cavity on the crystal just before he got to me. It triggered a blinding explosion and released enormous amounts of energy in all directions, an energy that would leave none alive that it touched. Kurkren, hit by this energy beams, made his final roar, the most terrorizing of all, a roar which was heard from all the island as I was told later on, and fell onto the ground. Kurkren, the spreader of pain and suffering was defeated.
I was also hit by the energy beams but instead of killing me, they just knocked me down unconscious for a while. After the shock of the explosion had vanished, I got up and came near the huge corpse of Kurkren. Using my spear, I cut a piece from his beautiful shiny fur, and then his corpse turned into ashes, spreading around like thin air.
When I walked back to the entrance, I noticed that it was now fully open and I saw a huge crowd of Furbolgs outside, waiting for me to come out of the cavern. Furbolgs not only from my clan, but from all clans of Azurmeyst. Bronzeclaw, Blackfur, Whitepaw, Owleye, Sharpspear, and many others, all Furbolgs were there.
I was wearing the tabard Simerrib had given to me, with the emblem of a bright sun shining above a high mountain. With all eyes on me, I raised my hand holding Kurkren's fur into the sky and shouted:
"My people, today ends the rule of Kurkren, so the sacrifices we have been making and the endless battles that we have been having with each other. Today ends the deaths, pain and suffering; today starts the peace for the Furbolgs!"
N'azgilub whispered a name into the sky, a name that was never given to another Furbolg before, which was then spread to all mouths in the crowd. In a few seconds, all Furbolgs were shouting this name:
"Ulgarub! Ulgarub! Ulgarub!.."
As the Furbolgs were shouting and finally coming together in peace, a bright sun started to rise over the mountains to the far east.
I had finally accomplished what I was supposed to do and brought peace to my people, but I had lost Simerrib, my love...
When we got back to our village with Furbolgs from all other clans, everyone helped me recover her remains from the fire and together we went to the shared graveyard, to bury not only my dear Simerrib but also the neverending grudge and hatred that we had allowed to spread among us for many generations. Now that we had come together, we chose a new emblem for all Furbolgs of Azuremyst. A bright sun shining above a high mountain.
This my friend, is how my people, the Furbolgs of Azuremyst Isle united and how I earned my true name.
No, I will not end my story without telling you how I was able to live so long. Remember the feeling of ultimate life energy that I absorbed from the red crystal in Kurkren's chamber? The crystal gave me a neverending life energy. What you would consider as a gift at first, soon turned out to be a curse as I watched all my loved ones die one by one, as years passed. My mother, N'azgilub, my friends, our leader Kurzerub, all the people that I know from our clan, from other clans and many many more...
Long after I witnessed the peace among my people but also lost so many loved ones, I found peace in solitude. So, I left our village and started to live alone, moving from one place to another, without calling anywhere home and without attaching to anyone so that I would not witness another loss of a loved one.
One last blow to my people, which was unexpected and pretty unfortunate, was the crash of that huge vehicle, which was carrying the blue people of the high skies. It crashed right on our village and having witnessed the crash from afar, I just could not bear any more pain. So, I abandoned all the life that I know and found haven in a cave, away from any known paths. I believe you will show understanding if I do not share the location of this cave with you, as any unexpected guests would only create more sadness for me.
If you visit Azuremyst Isle today, you can still see our shared emblem, a bright sun shining above a high mountain, among the current local Furbolg clans, mostly on their totems.
Not only that, but you will also see a mountain, The Mountain of Living Air, just behind the huge vehicle the blue people of high skies crashed onto this world with. There is a small path climbing up to the top of that mountain. It may take long to reach the top, but if you can show the patience and get to the top of the mountain, you will see a big gray rock. If you look closer, you will notice some symbols on this rock. These are the symbols from our ancient scripture that are now long forgotten. On one face of this rock, you will see the symbols that Kurkren's Spirit drew on the ground when it first visited our village. On the other side of the rock, you will see the symbols that all young Furbolgs are taught to remember, depicting how a long-forgotten ancestor of theirs fought with Kurkren for his beloved ones and brought peace to all clans.
My name is Ulgarub. In our tongue, it means "That Who Brought Peace To Us".
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