Times Turn 8

.----      - ---     --     ---   -----   - --       ----  ----   -     ----.
 )                                                                         (
(                             NewOrigins Events                             )
 )                            September, Year 1                            (
(                                                                           )
 )    Multiple traders are talking about the town of Stanlock that lies    (
(       in the Kanesti Sands desert, where a faction murdered guards.       )
 )                                                                         (
(                          .:*~*:._.:*~*:._.:*~*:.                          )
 )                                                                         (
(      Several adventurers are worried about the town of Baraznuz that      )
 )      lies in the Lurgbuz Rocks mountains, where a faction murdered      (
(                                  guards.                                  )
 )                                                                         (
(                          .:*~*:._.:*~*:._.:*~*:.                          )
 )                                                                         (
(       Some wanderers are talking about the town of Hymnoarenos that       )
 )      lies in the Antanoimos Sands desert, where a villans expelled      (
(                                  guards.                                  )
 )                                                                         (
(                          .:*~*:._.:*~*:._.:*~*:.                          )
 )                                                                         (
(         Multiple traders are discussing about daredevils who have         )
 )    expelled Sandlings (912) near jungles of Bletchvil Woods. Freeing    (
(             the desert of Great Ugdur Desert from their fear.             )
 )                                                                         (
(                          .:*~*:._.:*~*:._.:*~*:.                          )
 )                                                                         (
(       Multiple bards are discussing about witchers who have killed        )
 )    Sandlings (309) near ocean of Lanktor Ocean. Freeing the jungles     (
(               of Autarkotuspolisus Woods from their horror.               )
 )                                                                         (
(                          .:*~*:._.:*~*:._.:*~*:.                          )
 )                                                                         (
(      Some scouts are talking about adventurers who have slew Grizzly      )
 )     Bears (155) near volcanoes of Birmingmoor Volcano. Freeing the      (
(             mountains of Dunham Mountains from their anxiety.             )
 )                                                                         (
(                          .:*~*:._.:*~*:._.:*~*:.                          )
 )                                                                         (
(      In the swamps of Great Yaer River, near forests of Nottingwood       )
 )         Woods, Sphinx (749) who continue to cause fear to local         (
(                               inhabitants.                                )
 )                                                                         (
(                          .:*~*:._.:*~*:._.:*~*:.                          )
 )                                                                         (
(      In the desert of Great Volbuz Desert, near mountains of Lurggar      )
 )      Heights, Sandlings (319) who continue to cause dread to local      (
(                               inhabitants.                                )
 )                                                                         (
(                          .:*~*:._.:*~*:._.:*~*:.                          )
 )                                                                         (
(       In the desert of Great Perikeros Desert, near ocean of Great        )
 )     Gothall River, Sandlings (484) who continue to cause terror to      (
(                            local inhabitants.                             )
 )                                                                         (
(                          .:*~*:._.:*~*:._.:*~*:.                          )
 )                                                                         (
(       A group of witchers annihilated the Giant Scorpions (221) who       )
 )       inflicted horror on the inhabitants of the Great Autarkaros       (
(               Desert desert near ocean of Great Yaer River.               )
 )                                                                         (
(                          .:*~*:._.:*~*:._.:*~*:.                          )
 )                                                                         (
(          In the mountains of Basingford Rocks, near volcanoes of          )
 )      Basingford Peak, Family of Ogres (392) who continue to cause       (
(                        dread to local inhabitants.                        )
 )                                                                         (
(__       _       _       _       _       _       _       _       _       __)
    `-._.-' (___ _) `-._.-' `-._.-' )     ( `-._.-' `-._.-' (__ _ ) `-._.-'
            ( _ __)                (_     _)                (_ ___)
            (__  _)                 `-._.-'                 (___ _)
            `-._.-'                                         `-._.-'

The forest of Maranarx Forest, south of Portsham, has yet to be visited by
exiles from destroyed worlds.


In the forest of Katararotes Woods roams the Sandlings (405). Free the world from this menace and be rewarded!
Seek a token of the Ancient Ones legacy amongst the camels of Great Durbuz Desert.
Seek a token of the Ancient Ones legacy amongst the rootstone of Great Lurgbuz Desert.
Seek a token of the Ancient Ones legacy amongst the grain of Ialihn Plains.
In the desert of Great Antanoatos Desert roams the Family of Ogres (2242). Free the world from this menace and be rewarded!
Seek a token of the Ancient Ones legacy amongst the camels of Great Antanoatos Desert.
Seek a token of the Ancient Ones legacy amongst the iron of Great Ugdur Desert.
In the mountain of Nottinghill Rocks lurks the Undead (498). Free the world from this menace and be rewarded!
In the desert of Great Ugdur Desert roams the Sandlings (1911). Free the world from this menace and be rewarded!
In the jungle of Ugdur Jungle roams the Great Apes (864). Free the world from this menace and be rewarded!
Seek a token of the Ancient Ones legacy amongst the furs of Akeratos Jungle.
In the desert of Great Antanoatos Desert roams the Sandlings (350). Free the world from this menace and be rewarded!
In the desert of Agamenakos Desert roams the Giant Scorpions (246). Free the world from this menace and be rewarded!
In the desert of Great Birmington Desert lurks the Sandlings (926). Free the world from this menace and be rewarded!
In the desert of Great Ugdur Desert roams the Crocodiles (106). Free the world from this menace and be rewarded!
In the desert of Great Volbuz Desert lurks the Sphinx (631). Free the world from this menace and be rewarded!
Build a Temple in Agamenakos Desert for the glory of the Gods.
In the desert of Great Birmington Desert roams the Giant Scorpions (108). Free the world from this menace and be rewarded!
In the forest of Koehine Forest roams the Living Trees (482). Free the world from this menace and be rewarded!
In the desert of Great Izuknuz Desert lurks the Sphinx (811). Free the world from this menace and be rewarded!


Crocodiles are just as friendly as anacondas.
Iron Harlequins (12)
We were expecting guests...  but nobody showed. Hope the monsters didn't get them.
Four Horsemen (13)
Englefart caught his friend playing with fire. 

"No! Playing with fire is dangerous, you could burn your face off you silly old goose"

Englefart taught his friend to respect fire and use it safely. 
MetroGnomes (14)
“Recruit some scouts. Give them horses this time.”
“Will Gnolls do?”
Grey Order (15)
We see first necro creatures. Call to arms! Be ready to fight live beings!
Great Horde (16)
New Friends found, expansion continues
Malibu West (17)
Sand dunes with islands of living land, usually swampy along a river, such is the landscape of this world. Probably, forest here is the rarest and the most significant type of a land.
Desert Eagles (18)
Looks like the Town Guard decided to leave the town, with a small fight.
The Filras (20)
Nothing beats the joy of farming! The harvest is plentiful and ripe, but half has to be given to the demons.
M9 (22)
can we do the quest?
Akacis (23)
The Power (24)
Another monster? when will this end ?
Silver Hand (25)
But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.
Beastmasters (29)
First towns started to fall for the hostile forces.
Avalon Empire (3)
There seems to be many sphynxes around... Let's jump !
The Cartographer (30)
The viking faction had established outposts, guards and even some food production in local mountains. Therefore with this public announcement we claim full sovereignty over the Hornwood Heights mountain range including Basington peak.
Vikings of Venden (31)
Our diplomatic missives seem to have born fruit.   This is good.
Atlanteans of Yore (32)
In blood we trust
Blood Angels (35)
Injuries, Therefore, Should Be Inflicted All at Once

Our Eldest's Column

The ritual of penitence (and great grammar ringi) two months ago was great fun for all involved, but our civil servants know it has slowed our development, perhaps setting us back as much as the kindness of Good Mr. Hagen originally helped us forward.  So I did what any of the Eldests before me would have done, I evoked a demon and asked for a shortcut.  

The high priestess was later furious with me.  She told me, with much feeling, that I should take my questions to a god, not a demon.  She says demons are damned, dirty, deceitful, and dangerous.  But I think the high priestess is biased.  She spent her life learning to commune with gods, so of course her conversations with gods go better than her conversations with demons. And go better than her conversations with me.  She tells me our conversations would go better if only I were a bit more god-like.  But I digress, and I'm also getting ahead of my tale.

The demon I evoked, he seemed real nice and handsome, not dirty like the high priestess would later tell me all demons must be.  When I told the demon how we had offended the Times' editor by criticizing her grammar while making grammar errors of our own, he was sympathetic, even said he had done things like that in his own long life.  When I said were were set back in our development by our own poor manners, and that improvement of primitive lands by good example and good government was slow, he agreed.  He said what we needed to undo our setback was a shortcut.  And, again unlike what the high priestess would later tell me, he was real honest.  He didn't pretend to know how we could avoid the consequences of our mistakes, he said he himself didn't know any better path to civilization than the slow path of good government that I already knew.  

I must have looked so disappointed when he said that.  But then the demon brightened my day, for he said "I don't know a faster path, but the most notorious warlord of this world know that."  I said the little folk had not encountered this notorious warlord, or if we had, he saw us and we did not see him.  And now the demon smiled a beneficent smile.  The friendly demon offered, in return for the usual bribes and bowl of blood and promise of virgin sacrifices for the next 7 years, to invoke the most notorious warlord of this world, and to tell us the shortcut.  The demon set up his magical paraphernalia in a pattern very similar to the pattern I had used to evoke him, but without the containment field or barriers.  And then the demon _invoked_ with a famous name (which _I_ will not reprint here, though some others have been less cautious) that most notorious warlord to wear awhile my friendly demon's demon suit.  

The notorious warlord, now in handsome demon attire, revealed to me that development entails changes from the former, primitive state to the civilized one, and that, while these changes were on balance more good than bad, the local population enjoys some of these changes more than others.  The task of those already civilized is to help one generation embark on the initial period of sacrifice, so their children can enjoy the fruits of civilization.  And then the demon spoke the wisest, kindest words I have heard in many a year.

"Injuries, therefore, should be inflicted all at once, that their ill savor being less lasting may the less offend; whereas benefits should be conferred little by little, that so they may be more fully relished."

The demon (well, really the warlord temporarily in handsome demon flesh) gave me much other practical advice about when to plant, when to dig, and how to organize our lunches.  This advice will be useful to the little folk, but it was merely practical, unlike the single sentence quoted above which seemed to me the beautiful and perfect thought of a god.  The lesson ended, the notorious warlord departed the demon, the demon departed my chambers, and I hurried out to share the good news with my people and my governors.

Music Column

The plot thickens.  Brave hedgehogs reveal the Gyperborean poem is really a secret code.  The spooks still think it is, or can be, set to music, and still suspect the translators of deleting the musical notation, either because they did not understand it in the original, or because they did not know how to write music in Standard Goblin.  And one of our musical readers thinks she once heard a song like the Gyperborean poem, though the song she remembers was about some peaceful little fields.  Little folk spies searched the country for a copy of last month's Times in some language other than Goblin.  Without success; are all the natives of these deserts illiterate, or do they just not like newspapers?  The spooky linguists are trying to deduce whether "little" in "little fields" means fields for goblins, gnomes, and other little folk, or whether it means the fields are tiny, like the fields in these deserts.  The linguists don't have much to go on yet; they desperately need the original, or at least a different translation of the original Gyperborean song.

Natural Philosophy Column

We apologize for our errors last month.  Please read the errata.  Our shipbuilders are still waiting for the holy stone to arrive.  Even if that stone is lighter than water, it is apparently too heavy for goblins to carry.  Our swift couriers had a camels, but that camel is fully loaded with two goblins, and in any case could not bring back enough holy stone to make a raft.  The swift couriers have begun searching the caldera for camels or even (sour face) horses, but so far have found neither.

Porcus Column

Our messenger was summoned to the chief editor's office as soon as she arrived at the Times with this months articles.  The beautiful, talented, and wise chief editor told her that she had no difficulty reading last month's Porcus column, but that she published it despite what it said because she favors free speech, so long as it is grammatical and correctly formatted, especially if it helps sell her newspaper.  She explained, in impeccable Standard Goblin (how many languages does she know, and does she speak them all this well?), that she did not translate our Porcus column into the native language of each edition of her newspaper last month because, well, that would have defeated the little folk's purpose in submitting it in Porcus, and also because she has a shortage of translators because the translator she chastised for us resigned from the Times promising a lawsuit.  

Below is the promised translation of last months column into the language of your local edition of the Times, whatever language that might be:

Ciphered to evade the editor's prying eyes.

Twice the Times' chief editor declined to publish our articles "because they are not up to the Times' high standards".  Forsooth, we offended first, criticizing punctuation in the Times.  Verily, she did find a punctuation error in our own Times submission.  Fair is her first snub.  But committing our second month's columns to the round receptacle reserved for arguments so holy they may fuel the Times' fires of type reformation seems excessive.  What sort of apology does she demand?  We tried to atone for our disrespectful criticism of the Times article by having a month long nationwide ritual of penitence.  If our month long nationwide ritual of penitence  isn't enough to satisfy her, what will be?  We are little folk, so we must keep a shamefaced demeanor in public, but in private, some of us are steaming.  Some little folk reporters have asked Our Eldest's government for help.  Our Eldest heard their plea, and set the full machinery of the little folk state to somehow compelling the Times editors to publish our work.  At the little folk's ancient, adequately funded but dusty and disused "goblin intelligence agency", some old spies took time out from creating crossword puzzles to apply their professional skills to determining, what, really, the Times editor intends to publish from our submissions.

Propaganda Column

The Great Grammar Ringi was a great success.  Many new civil servants have been appointed with the new rank of Grammar Ringi Censor.  They will be paid stipends from the public purse for life, and they will be immune to certain taxes and obligations than fall on the rest of the little folk.  They shall be selected from those individuals whose performance in the grammar portions of the Goblin civil service exam are highest.

There has been some mumbling, among the littlest and most educated of us, not the new recruits from the provinces, complaining about demons.  The little folk are good.  We would never do anything that is bad.  If Our Eldest summons demons, he must be doing so for a good cause.  The little folk are lucky to live in peace inside the ring of Thane's Ring armies, and any demons Our Eldest is summoning must be helping us bring civilization and appreciation for the arts to those lands.

Demons are people too.  Gnomes are little people.  There has been some disrespectful and intolerant gossip about big folk recently.  Ask yourselves, is disrespectful gossip really the littlest thing you can say?  Make yourselves small.  Be nice to a demon, gnome, orc, or gnoll today.  

Advice Column

Pace, Martiniks.  You see Ironmen but you see no camels.  If you get a camel and learn to ride it, the ironmen will allow you to pass.

Puzzle Column

Last month we asked

Which of these is elderly, timid, feeble, and nervously shilly shallying?

A) "Your majesty, we are late."  --Windmasters
B) "Running late as it is."   --Romans
C) "Oh dear, oh dear, I shall be too late."   --Dead Rabbit

The answer is simple if you think like a goblin.  

not A) The answer cannot be A, because A might offend the windmasters.  Weather is terrifying.  Sane goblins offer earth and water to any who claim to command the wind.  Sane goblins offer no offense to any master of weather.  So, the answer cannot be A.  

not B) The answer cannot be B, because, well, you know, Romans.  "Rome never looks where she treads.  Always her heavy hooves fall on our stomachs, our hearts or our heads; and Rome never heeds when we bawl. Her sentries pass on.  That is all."  (Kipling)  So, for the little folk anyway, the answer cannot be B.  

then C) The correct answer is C, because the dead rabbit is dead.  And as all goblins know, dead things can no longer hurt you.  Unless you wait to long before eating them, particularly on a warm day.  The correct goblin answer is C.

Religion Column

Gods are very different from demons.  Gods care about their creations, and have your best interests at heart.  Gods will treat you better than you treat them.  Particularly nature gods, they accept all the harm we do, and every spring give us new presents despite our sins.  Demons don't make anything.  Demons don't care about anything.  Demons are uncaring unmakers.  Demons are damned, dirty, deceitful, and dangerous.  Demons will treat you far worse than you treat them, then tell you that you still owe them your sacrifices and your soul.  No good ever comes of communion with demons or the undead.

Emulate Good Mr. Hagen and the Thane's Ring spirits that assist him.  Bind evil wherever you find it.

The propagandists tell us that soon we may need to publish our prayers in other languages.  Is this a good thing or a bad thing?  We do not know.  Our gods are silent.  This month, at least, we can still publish in New Standard Goblin.

Little goblin children's evening prayer:
    Bless Good Mr. Hagen and the Thane's Ring spirits that aid him.
    May his campaign to seek out and bind evil bring to all the peace inside the ring of his armies.


Last week our natural philosophy reporter made the implausible claim that the northeast corner of the great Antanoatos Desert is also the northeast corner or the Antanoimos Sands.  Of course, readers of the Times immediately deduced the implication that the Zolain flows over the edge of the world in an odd location, because only from an odd location may the northeast corners of two areas meet.  One reader even pointed out that while it is technically possible for the Zolain to flow over the world's edge in a place that is not odd and does lie at the northeast corner of two different areas, if this were true, then it must also be true that the Zolain flows over the edge from a second, adjacent location that is odd.  Other readers were quick to point out that if the river flows north from an odd location, then its even shores must lie slightly north of the waterfall, and to then suggest how our explorers might peek under the rim of the world from points north of the Zolain's waterfall.  Sadly, none of this is possible.  Our reporter made an error.  The Zolain river is at the northwest corner of the Antanoimos sands, not the northeast corner.  And it is the shores of the Zolain that are odd at the falls, not the falls themselves.

Governors Column

Get a government job my mother said.  Art is higher status and more fun, but these deserts barely support the first artist.  When the second arrives both artists will be poor, and when the third joins them, all three will starve.  Criticize Our Eldest all you want, but civil service salaries are guaranteed by little folk law; civil servants always have silver in their pockets.  So I wasted my childhood memorizing Goblin classics, law, government, and oratory while my friends got to study the fun subjects of goblin painting, poetry, music, architecture, statuary, tapestry and porcelain.  I pass the exams, get appointed, and for what?  Our Eldest all too often forgets that he spent all that silver training us for our jobs, and he spends far too much of the people's treasure on foreign consultants who try to tell his civil servants how to do what we already know better than they how to do.  Just this month Our Eldest hired, or in some other way got advice from, (how did Our Eldest do that?  Our eldest must know more tricks than he taught us) the most notorious of warlords (you know whom I mean) to advise him on development economics.  Our Eldest had a special interest in the transition to modern agriculture in the provinces.  Now we, Our Eldest's governors and other civil servants, already know how to do this.  It is a slow process of showing and sharing good goblin government, introducing goblin religion, setting a good goblin example for the bigger, less civilized provincials, and generally waiting for the older generation of provincials to retire and die off, at which time their goblin emulating children will take control of the province.  But Our Eldest wanted to go faster.  He asked consultants for short cuts.  And so we governors all received at the beginning of the last month a politely worded suggestion: "injuries, therefore, should be inflicted all at once, that their ill savor being less lasting may the less offend, whereas benefits should be conferred little by little, to so they may be more fully relished."  What is this nonsense?  It is signed by Our Eldest, but we really know this suggestion must come from that (literally) damned consultant.  Our Eldest suggests that we not politely request alms to support communal projects as usual this month, but instead take and melt down all the autochthonous population's golden idols, and that this month we take from the locals their children.  He asks that the children be sent back into the interior so that they may be educated as house helps in goblin lands, where they may learn goblin culture away from the primitive influence of their parents that can only hold them back.  Our Eldest is either Our Senilest, or he has invoked instead of evoked one of those demons he trusts so much more than his governors.  The polite suggestion from Our Eldest goes on to beseech us to use all the goblin artistic talent we learned in school (but of course we didn't learn it, because we were busy studying for the civil service exam while our friends got to make art) to carve frightful koruro, to wear these while collecting the idols and children, and then to hang them from or mount them on the roof beams of the house of government.  So we carve our koruro, sew frightening robes to go with our newly carved masks, and practice with the terrifying maracas and castanets Our Eldest has politely suggested that the instrument makers of Colgrove, Hymnoaros, Marmere, Stockdare, Zelotatres, and Warrington send to us.  Then last month, all across the lands of the little folk, the provincial governors, instead of our usual begging for alms to support projects of general benefit, don our scary masks, shake our rattles, dance our frightening dance, and politely request the natives to give us all their idols and children.

They laughed at us.

They laughed at us!

They laughed at us.  All across the little folk lands, there are no alms this month, nor melted idols, nor children on their merry way to civilized futures.  The children are still stuck in the past with their primitive parents, still speaking their coarse, non-Goblin languages.  We are fortunate that civil service salaries are guaranteed by edict, for there is going to be quite the _dent_ in the public treasury.  I hope Our Eldest is _very_ _polite_ to that damned demon.  

Obituary Column

Darlugdach, explorer, beloved son and younger brother, died last month in freak weather in the Antanoatos Wastes, while making his way north from the Nottinghill Woods.  He did not suffer, his was a peaceful death of natural causes, he seems to have been struck by lightning.
little folk (38)
The desert is full of hidden danger.  An entire outpost vanished into the sands.  Not one survivor.  It seems a small elite force killed them all before they could flee.
Kiiran (39)
The Children of The Four Winds have launched a diversity, equality and inclusion initiative. They are accepting members of all species into the army, and will accept anyone into the quarries to produce the stone needed. The ancient, decayed roads will be restored!
The Children of the Four Winds (40)
Strange! A neighbor, StarFire (19), has disappeared somewhere! Yesterday his detachments were sneaking around my lands, developing the forest, and the ruler himself threatened to take over the town of Optanitos, and today - it's empty! But we just agreed on peace!
Alwengos (41)
Is it really the peace? Is it really time for a quiet development? what a pleasure for our people! 
Prodigal sons (42)
The size of the tundra in the north is amazing
Martiniks Trade Guild (43)
Something terrible is happening on the Tritotuspolisus Plains, murders have been taking place there for the third month. Two factions (19 & 26) lived in those lands have already left this world. Who is this creepy monster, destroying everything in its path?
Brave hedgehogs (46)
Merewulf spoke to his nobles. Send your people on patrol. There was a rumble in the jungle  in the southeast. I don't want any people violating our borders. Kill any intruders and hang them up in plain sight as a warning.
The House of Cygwin (47)
More and more factions are coming to the respite of this city in the desert. Utuk'ku cannot blame any of them, the heat outside these walls can drain out even the most determined. They will welcome the ice.
Stormspike (49)
First unit on guard gets all the tax.
Thane's Ring (5)
Development is low, but steady. Could it be the fault of orcs or elves?
They don't seem very cooperative in farming lands or building stuff.
Magogash empire (51)
Not that sandlings were rude to Torwin, they were just too much ... sandy. 
Corvin Ravens (55)
Damn cows ate all our crops.
Orc Hunters (56)
It's nice to meet such good guys as a little folk.
I take this moment to say hi! 🤗

I also say hello to the monsters, with a wish to choke and become dinner yourself. ☠

In the desert, you especially want a good dark beer... 🍺
Dark League (6)
The desert sands swirled around the penitents' feet, their bare callused skin too tough to feel even the midday heat.

Behind, the rage of Kongs.  Ahead, the hunger of grizzlies and the brutality of ogres.  Truly the Fendahl was testing their faith today.
The Fendahli (65)
Your magesty. This time we've failed.
Bogt thing attacked us before we was ready to fight.
It's time for resurrection.
WindMasters (68)
Less words, more work. Finally the swamp will have iron weapons to sell so more goblins can be purchased.... so much for full magic (it's only temporary)

Peace at all costs!
Peacekeepers (7)
Ogres, grizzly bears, evil mages, evil warriors, a demon pit...

Rough neighborhood.
Fenris Reborn (70)
Have finally found another faction in this desolate world.
Hope they are friendly.
Will let you know.
Romans (8)


Holden is so severe, that he at first eats his meal and then cooks it
In the faraway land of Boola Boo Ball, there are no lutes, no lutes at all.
The authorities of several coastal regions have banned the Holden Witness Sect from performing rituals on beaches and in floodplains. Animal rights activists fear for the egg laying of rare turtles and crocodiles.
work is not Holden, he will not run away into the forest
Holden helped Helena heal hedgehog.
Autumn-chill'd desert
Red eyes burn holes in the night
Winter is coming.