Vale Nor was a huge, serpent-bodied beast that became a demigod known as the Island Mover. He is the god and ancestor to the ocean-dwelling race, the valenor, and is often depicted as a larger version of the species; with large frills, tentacles, and a glowing horn that he would shed every hundred years in the deepest depths of the ocean.
Vale Nor would shape the islands and ocean floor by forcing land masses apart and dragging them around. His actions are believed to be the cause of the world’s tectonic plates, which still move without his help.
Until the mid-9,000s he was barely known to other Sentient races; most who knew of him had only heard of him through the Rendi tale, in which he attempted to swallow the ancestors to the kogarg and anvora people but was stopped by the harpy Zen’efay. This attack being present in both Rendi and valenor history has caused many clashes with the bird races in the past, but since the valenor’s reclassification as Sentients, conflict is at a minimum.
Vale Nor was said to have appeared during the Great Darkness (believed to be the same mentioned in many cultural tales) and ruled the world before the New Sun.
He was the first to take soulstone to the depths of the sea, in the form of his moulted horn. His glowing horn gave life to the ocean and created delicate ecosystems that slowly spread around the world; allowing ocean life to survive the otherwise certain death of the Great Darkness.
He held back from feeding on the fish for as long as he was able while they reproduced to fill the ocean; only eating when absolutely necessary for his own survival…. But these rare feeding times made the fish fear him in his peaceful approaches and he was shunned by the life he’d worked hard to maintain. Whales, however, were smart creatures who understood Vale Nor’s efforts and served him loyally. They learnt to communicate with Vale Nor, a trait passed into his mortal descendants, and became holy creatures that even he would not consume.
When the New Sun first rose Vale Nor swam to the ocean’s surface to feed on life above, but instead he was wounded by the sky-creature, Zen’efay, who was able to cause great harm to him despite her small size. In the struggle of the pain of his wounds he destroyed his home continent; shattering it into hundreds of smaller islands that came to be known as Das.
Vale Nor’s wound bled, and he was unable to stop it. As it bled, he shrunk. It continued to bleed until he was no larger than a young whale and unable to care for himself as the ocean turned on him. Ungrateful for the life he had given it, the ocean tried to kill Vale Nor, but the whales protected him. Growing vicious and organised, many of the whales turned into orca warriors in their attempts to save their God. Eventually, however, Vale Nor was killed.
He met his end when ambushed by an ocean-born dragon, who ripped his horn and skull from his head and shattered it. The fragments of his skull and horn were collected by the whales, who tried to summon him back from the dead with magic; but instead the fragments grew into their own people, the valenor, who took after him in image and in pride.
Despite many attempts to coax them, whales have refused to attempt necromancy again.
The Poem, Betrayal
There is a popular poem, translated from the valenor’s native tongue, that explains the story of Vale Nor. The poem is titled Gaiskavahk or, in International, Betrayal.
The poem’s most accurate translation is below:
When the sky went dark,
He was all that lit the oceans.
He was all that brought life,
In the world that sought to kill itself.
So despite his hunger,
He held back,
And let the ocean creatures multiply,
Until it was too much,
And he began to feed.
He leapt from his waters,
To the sky-creatures above,
Swallowing two in his great maw.
The smallest slashed at him,
With claws too sharp for its size.
And he shattered the continent Das,
Screeching as he bled from his wounds.
And he fled from the surface into the Great Deep,
Where the ocean was unthankful for the life he had given it.
And he died in the care of whales.
The only loyalty he had ever been shown.