The Greatbloom: Aligare’s creation legend



Every culture has a creation story, some folklore attempt to explain why we have earth and sky and life. Aligare folk have the legend of the Greatbloom. You might have seen it already in the Aligare lore section of this site but here it is again:

Before all things, there was no land and no sky, not enough light to see by and no waft of air to sense with. All things churned together. It was silent, like a held breath. And then, life came to that place. It crashed through all things, more brilliant than lightning and more fluid than water, to strike one mote of soil and one mote of air. From that burned spot, the Greatbloom crept out. It was a tiny vine, pale white but as alive as any person. Without so much as a seed hull to protect it, the Greatbloom rooted itself on the life-struck earth and breathed in the life-struck air — and it grew and grew.

After forty-eight years had passed, the Greatbloom was soon a towering plant casting an endless shadow over the land. And then, it opened a magnificent flower, so it had a face to turn toward everything around it. The earth was bare and dusty. The air was devoid, stirred by no wind. Sensing how badly the land wanted for life, the Greatbloom gathered its strength into seeds of every type and element. Once its seeds were scattered, the Greatbloom wilted and died. Over the forty-eight years its stalk took to break down, its elemental seeds blossomed and filled the land richly with life.

The gods arrived to watch those seeds send out first roots. They saw what that lone Greatbloom plant had done, and they gathered around its dry, brown stem. They had never seen such potential in all the empty tracts they had crossed. Great Bright and Dark, with Verdana, Fyrian, Ambri and Okeos beside them, agreed to tend to these things the Greatbloom brought to life. And with all life adopted by god guardians, it was nurtured, and it has been thriving ever since.

The details change a bit depending on who’s telling the story. Korvi folk sometimes say the Greatbloom produced both seeds and eggs, because they don’t think fire-elemental creatures would come from a seed. Some folk feel that the Greatbloom’s seed wasn’t created by a lightning-like bolt of life energy: they think the seed itself was there from the beginning, as a dense packet of all the mortal life energy there is. But whatever the story’s specifics, the Greatbloom is broadly known and considered to be the origin of everything in Aligare.


I didn’t actually develop this creation legend until Remedy was nearly complete. I wanted to make sure that the people’s legends are a reflection of their everyday lives and beliefs. That’s why the Greatbloom sacrifices itself to fill a greater need. That’s why the gods are outsiders who are impressed by the Greatbloom’s efforts, and willing to adopt the land and protect it. Aligare society values cooperation and kindness, and it feels that the families we choose are just as valid as families tied by blood. For aemets, korvi and ferrin, these values are a constant truth.



2 Comments on “The Greatbloom: Aligare’s creation legend”

  1. Very well written and insightful having one’s view of a creation story reflective of the societal values the people bring to it. Nicely done.

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