Our Elves/Goblins Are Different

This remark:

The book doesn’t have much to say about the difference between elves and goblins beyond that goblins have darker skin.

from this review of the Goblin Emperor got me thinking about my own experiments long ago with Elves & Goblins.

Back when i was a high school kid, I wrote a lamentably long and awful fantasy saga (nearly half of it was written in various forms of verse, some experimental, other metric) of ridiculous scope, no doubt influenced by my own middle-school enjoyment of Magic the Gathering and its planeswalking gods stomping about across the multiverse.

The book I wrote covered 3 major interrelated arcs that spanned half a dozen planes working on the concept that magic users powerful enough could create anchor points in select areas within an 8 dimensional grid to create worlds out of possibilities and travel between them; of course, since temporal axes cannot intersect along such worlds, while one can shift between these planes, there’s no interrelation between the timelines of each world.  So, one asshole wizard’s crusade against life has corrupted the world at 0,0,0,0,0,0,0,0 on the multiversal plane and those who are trying to stop him have created a time loop across these planes because of having stopped there at one point.  Worlds are created, invaded, destroyed, and the cycle goes on.  The three arcs consisted of a series of wars against a lich king who had found a plane shifter’s spellbook, the aftermath of those who escaped that war to another plane only to find it attacked by one of the plane shifter (the Burning God) at the heart of the time loop, and the revenge quest of the other plane shifter (Garin) who finally destroyed the Burning God and left the decadent empire (and spellbook) which would eventually fall into the possession of his descendant who would become the Lich King.  It was written so that you could theoretically start at any point and it would tell a continuous story up to the point where you were back where you’d started.  Oh, yeah, and the Burning God, who was the overarching villain of the whole thing, was one of Garin’s great grandchildren who was resentful as hell of the fact that his great grandmother, the Nymph, had basically bred their entire race with the purpose of being her former (yeah, Garin thinks it’s pretty messed up too) lover’s army.

The way that elves and goblins worked were almost a grampa paradox.  Just for the hell of it, I made a little diagram:

Morilithic saga

Don’t ever expect these to be published in any way, shape or form any time soon; it’s still rotting in a box in my spare room, and a lot of the parts written in pencil are so faded I could probably barely make a lot of it out.  Plus, it’s about as bad as you’d expect from a teenager who’d mixed up a bunch of pink slime fantasy, Tolkien and had just read a ton of Hindu mythology.  Every time I sat down to edit it in the last 10 years, I would give up in disgust when i’d see all the names I’d cribbed from the Mahabharata.

2 responses to “Our Elves/Goblins Are Different

  1. Which PROVES that sane people reflexively devote volumes material to the subject of why and how elves and goblins are different from each other. I mean CASE CLOSED. (!!!)

    • Ironically, one of the many reasons why I could never bring myself to do anything with it was I went through a phase of despising the preconceived notions that simply calling things “elves” or “goblins” would bring to the table. The idea that someone could just HAVE elves and HAVE goblins in their story and leave it at that boggles my mind!

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