The Birth of the Races
And the Betrayer began thinking of a new plan to regain control of her creation. She thought if she could pit brother against sister she would gain a chance to destroy them both. So she set about making a race to her liking, and fashioning it to suit her purposes. Individually they were weak, but united they were strong. And when she was pleased she bestowed upon them the blessings of ingenuity and curiosity, and the curse of single-mindedness. She passed her hand over them once more, endowing them with the spark of life, and immediately they fell to their knees and worshipped their Mistress.
She allowed their numbers to grow, and the people known as the Kirnan flourished and thrived. And after seven times seven generations, four siblings were born known for their virtue and love for one another. The four were named Esselen, Dunnigen, Derry Twinkleye and Rhea. And the Betrayer came to them in a dream showing them the Vault of the Dragons where the Keys to Magic are kept, and planted within the siblings the seed of desire to steal the four Keys.
So the siblings gathered two companions each, and they set out north for the volcano known as Arcan, which housed the Vault of the Dragons. While on their way, the twelve companions had many adventures too numerous to recount here. After six months journey, they arrived at the base of Arcan. Having discussed their plan many times, they knew the next morning the siblings would split up, each with their respective companions. Sharing what little food they had, they each made pledges to share the four keys equally among themselves, and to always honor one another as brother and sister, no matter what their fate.
The next morning, they put their plan to action. Derry and Rhea scaled the side of Arcan, while Dunnigan set about digging an escape tunnel. Finally Esselen positioned himself at the mouth of the tunnel to take the keys and run with them, for he was certainly the fastest runner.
Once at the top Derry and Rhea lowered themselves into the volcano’s crater, and then into a cave that led to the heart of the mountain. Miles of tunnels they walked until they came upon the holy chamber, guarded by the Red Wyrm, Tiamat. “Who are you that you have come to the Vault of the Dragons? What is it you desire?” asked the dragon eyeing the companions suspiciously.
“We have heard of your fate,” said the silver-tongued Derry, “that you are condemned to guard this vault for eon upon eon, without so much as an entertainment. And so, we have come to bring you just that.”
“How kind of you to think of me,” said the crimson dragon. And without further ado, Derry and his two companions began performing songs and stories and dances for the pleasure of the Red Wyrm.
Meanwhile, Rhea and her companions were sneaking in the shadows. And with Tiamat distracted, they were able to slip behind the guardian and steal the Keys of Magic. By that time Dunnigen had broken through into the vault with his tunnel, and Rhea dashed down it, not looking back.
Once Dunnigen had broken through, Tiamat realized she had been tricked. Quickly she called her dragon companions to her aid. But once the keys had been stolen, the volcano soon exploded in magic, fire, and magma, fusing Tiamat with her companions, and creating the horrifying hydra that she is today.
The siblings barely escaped with their lives from the explosion, but were scattered to the four corners of the world. Esselen and his friends were able to hold on to two of the keys, and were thrown to where the land and sea meet, and his descendants became the Kesh and then the Elves. Dunnigan held a key, and was thrown far to the northern mountains. His descendants became the Dwarves. Derry had one key, and was thrown south into the southern hills. His descendants became the gnomes. And Rhea, taking up the rear, did not have any key. She was thrown to the floor of the Great Valley, and her descendants became the halflings.
As punishment for failing to carry out her well-laid plans, Kir turned her back on her children the Kirnan, and created foul and evil forces to kill them, now known collectively as the Gob-linsa, or Goblins. For this reason, and countless others, the older sister of Ged and Sekonet is known as Kir the Betrayer.
The Kirnan then cried out to Ged, Keeper of the Natural Law. “We have been used as a tool against you. We are now being punished for our innocence.” And the Lord of the Living passed his hand over the Kir-nan, and granted them The Blessing to transform themselves into wolves so that they could hide and defend themselves from the forces of Kir. The Blessing continues to this day among the Kirnan. Known to others as lycanthropy, it is seen as a curse. But it is the saving grace of the Kirnan as the adopted children of Ged, Lord of the Living.