This story takes place in my Bear Empire universe, the home of the Deline-and-Carrone romance story and the theme of January 2019's Patreon posts.


 The people of every spirit have a tale about how they came to be where they are. 

Most of the tales are similar; even those who hate the Bear (and there are a few of those) tell of the way the Bear took charge.  Almost everyone tells tales that way: the Bear came over the land, the others rode the Bear's back, and so on. 

Not so the people of the Orca. 

Before there was the Bear, they say, there was the ice, the water, and the Whale. 

Before there was the water, there was only Ice and the Whale.

 And before anything at all, there was the Whale. The Whale spat out, and the ice formed where her spittle touched the surface of existence.

The Whale shot water from her blowhole, and thus there was water. 

The Whale slapped the ice with her tail, and the People of the Whale and the little-siblings, the seals and the fish and the wolves, all came to be. 

And the Whale dove down deep to the bottom of the water, and from there she brought up land and green stuff to live among the ice. 

And thus, the people of the Orca have been here longer than the people of the Bear, longer than the land the Whale brought with Bear, longer than anything at all but the ice, the water, and Whale herself. 

And Whale herself has been here, thus, longer than anything at all. 

For proof -- as if such a thing was needed -- the People of the Orca will point to their ice, which unlike inferior ice of other places, has veins of fat going through it. The Whale Herself built this ice, they say, to feed her people.   And if you dig down far enough in the ice, even today, you will find thick veins of perfectly preserved fat, the better to cook your ancient fish on. 

As if that weren't enough, there are also the carvings, deep in the caverns of the Bear, showing Whales and the people of the Orca already here, floating in the North above the Bear Mountains.

You won't find a Bear to speak of that, nor an Elk, nor an Eagle.  And that is fine.  The people of the Orca know who came first, and why.


With apologies to Terry Pratchett