The Promise Document in Linebound | World Anvil

The Promise

The decision that changed history.

"The snow fell upon their heads and shoulders, flake by flake. The wind howled like the fiercest predator. Erlik and Jarmish ignored the weather and watched each other with their wooden spears at the ready.   A sudden crack filled the air. Eye contact broke and they both frantically scanned for the source of the noise. A nearby tree snapped in the wind and fell between the two. The ice shattered and Jarmish fell in.   Erlik saw the pile of fish Jarmish had caught. There were hungry beaks to feed, thoughts of family flowed through the mind like the river. It had been so long since he had seen them. A pounding from under the ice snapped Erlik back to reality.   And then it happened - the moment that changed history. Instead of doing what anyone else would have done, Erlik stuck his speak in the water and felt a tug. The river was strong under the ice but he managed to pull Jarmish back to the hole the branch had broken. The human's wet hair came out of the water first and Erlik extended a clawed hand.   Jarmish stuck out an arm and they grabbed each other by the elbow and he was pulled from the water - that's why deals today are sealed with that same motion."
— Opening of The Promise

Things were hard for everyone during the Time of Darkness. The stories say that many would steal, fight, and even kill for the resources they needed. Distrust was the default and compassion was scarce. Families looked out for themselves, this caused great tension between the species - humans and tengu - in the Zinato Region.


During one fateful encounter, two people, Erlik and Jarmish - tengu and human - stood face to face. Each of them searching for something their family needed desperately.   They had known for at least a season that they lived in the same area but never encountered each other. But this knowledge had them leave their homes armed with whatever they could find. Sharpened sticks proved useful as both weapons and tools for finding the deep spots in the snow. The coming battle was interrupted and in a rare act of sympathy, one saved the other. This act led to a partnership between the two, then their families, then others nearby. Together they were more capable of surviving the realities of the world.


To the current time the effects of The Promise are felt. The lived reality of people in the Zinato Region and in Burim and Bral are the result of that agreement from long ago. In these regions, racial tensions between the two species are almost non-existent.

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Treaty, Diplomatic
Oral Tradition / Word of Mouth


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