The Casting of Stones

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This story has been passed around campfires for ages, and is nearly as old as Monsterdom itself. Many versions of it have formed in that time, and this page is an attempt to chronicle all references to it within known Belegarth lore.

For other ways to connect your lore to the wider Belegarth history, see also The Eyes of Obellys.


Original Version - Bugbears

"When all the races existed upon the face of the world, they had no place to call their own. They began to fight and make war for what could have been many years or only many days as time is weird for gods, and though each race fought with vigour and brutality, the Bugbears proved strongest and most ferocious of them all.

The other gods feared for their beloved creations and came to Marjack and pleaded that there needed to be defined homelands, if only to stop the wars, and so that every race would have a place they always belonged. So Marjack in his wisdom decided there would be a contest amongst the gods themselves: They would throw stones upon the world, and where their stone landed, their creatures would hold dominion. The gods rejoiced and the night before the contest they had another celebration to rival that of the night the world was made, but as the other gods drank and sang and ate, Marjack stood outside and threw stones, to practice. He practiced until he could hit EXACTLY what he aimed at, every time, and then he slept.

When the morning came the gods drew lots to determine the order in which they would go, then the competition began. The Human gods threw their stones and struck the area that allowed their children to live where they pleased, the Dwarven gods struck the mountains of stone, and the contest continued so forth until there remained only the god of Elves and Marjack himself. Only two homelands remained, the lush forests and the barren deserts. Marjack had drawn before the Elven god, and so made his way to cast his stone with confidence.

The elven god knew their creation had been made frail, the desert would surely break them, and so they concocted a scheme to ensure their pale creation's survival. In the moment before Marjack loosed his stone, the god of Elves cast a glamour over his eyes, so that he saw the Desert where the forest had once been and the Forest where the Desert should be. Having practiced all that time, Marjack hit his mark expertly.

As the stone landed, the glamour broke, and Marjack saw where he had thrown his stone. So great was his rage that the heavens themselves shook, and so great was his bond with the Bugbear that they were forever touched by his fury. Marjack declared then that ever would there be a hatred of elves in the hearts of the Bugbear, and as a lesson for his treachery Marjack grabbed the Elven god and carved his ears into knives so that all might forever know the pointed hearts of elves."

Newer Version - Deep Ones

"When Melashekhaad gave all the other gods the ability to create creatures, they threw a party to celebrate. Dagon was the most indifferent of the young gods, and did not really care about being able to create life. He liked to just relax and do nothing. But when Melashekhaad gave the others their abilities, he decided to join them in their revelry. As the youngest, Dagon was always picked on and bossed around so he held some resentment for his brothers. At the party, they had a rock throwing competition and made him throw first. The rocks would determine where on the earth they would start their creations. Dagon didn't really want to throw, but he haphazardly chucked a rock and it landed in the sea. The other gods laughed and derided him because he couldn't even hit the land. As the others threw, Dagon decided to trick them. The youngest god covered Marjack's eyes and made him hit the desert. With Gruumsh, he slapped his elbow causing him to hit the swamps. The other gods were furious, and drove Dagon away to the sea."

Newer Version - Gnolls

"...The Goblyn war was not over yet, though. It was not until nearly every inch of the earth was soaked in blood that the warring finally paused. The gods were now too attached to their races to see them destroyed, and decided, just this once, they would try a diplomatic solution. Each god would get to throw a stone, and their race would live wherever it landed. No gods or goddesses claimed the Gnolls during this time, and as a result, they became nomads. This also gave the gnolls their own strange power, having no reliance on gods, but their own will. In time, the great gnoll horde split into the clans we know today. Their stories are still being written as we speak."

Other References

  • Dwarves have a similar story that they call "The Falling of Stones." In the Dwarven version, the dwarves have been placed in a magical slumber under the earth after being created to help the gods to finish the crafting of the world. When the gods cast stones to decide the location where their chosen races would live, the impacts cause earthquakes that awaken the dwarves and allow them to head back to the surface and rejoin the world. While the Bugbear story references a "Dwarven god", it is unknown who this could be, as the dwarves have no specific gods of their own, instead venerating Paragons. It is very likely that this mistake comes from a lack of understanding due to the long and bloody history between Dwarves and the monstrous races.
  • Hat Trolls simultaneously believe two different versions:
    • Damun existed as the tallest Troll during the Casting. He got upset at these far-off beings throwing rocks at him and spreading smaller, useless creatures on his planet. So he picked up a huge rock, much bigger than the ones they were throwing, and chucked it back at them. He threw it really far, but he missed, and the big rock got stuck in the sky between Damun and the offending rock throwers. The would-be invaders kept throwing their rocks, but they hit the big rock instead of their intended target, and they got upset. Damun was pleased with this and sat down to watch. Smaller creatures ask Trolls where the new star came from, and to this day, they always say "Damun."
    • Damun was present for the Casting, but thought it was a competition to see who could throw the farthest. He won this by casting a stone so far that it landed on the Moon. The other gods shook their heads, but ultimately decided that Trolls could live where they want, but at least one of them has to live where their Stone had landed. So Damun took a deep breath, jumped onto the Moon, and has been holding it there to this day.
  • Most Kobolds, being atheists, don't actually believe that this story happened, as that would mean the gods had to exist. However, their non-existence didn't stop the pinkie races from believing that they had been "blessed" with new lands to live in, and that the Kobolds were no longer welcome on the surface. This series of events is part of what led to Kobolds living almost entirely in the underground city of Moseewaa.
  • Merfolk believe their progenitor, Pellao, existed at the time of the Casting but was uninterested in the competition. She chose to explore the deep waters of the oceans instead, and was later trapped under the ocean floor when fighting broke out again on the surface.
  • Notably, Goblyns, one of the oldest and most prominent monster races, do not acknowledge this story at all. It is likely that the "Wars" described in the original lore overlap with what Goblyns call the Great War, wherein all other races joined forces to defeat them, and succeeded only through treachery. Goblyns at the time were scattered to the four winds, and it is likely that Melashekhaad either was not invited, or merely slept through this event, as he is very large and pays little attention to the actions of smaller beings.
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