The Brönne, descendants of the ancestor Brön, whom Calenheliddoeg had made half-man half-steed out of long grass and the steppe’s wind, had since their early times been famed as combative horsemen. Holding vast domains, and loving fight, archery, and the wide open plains, they soon began to press against the estranged Sūr’s southern reaches. Although both tribes respected one another’s territories, the tribe of Mon soon yearned yet again for north and more tranquil lands.
The green plains north of Nollpyrrh and Lley Allon were lined by a belt of forest that had been a natural and still uncrossed barrier to the Sūr. Lillya and Umrren though, leaders of their people, finally set out into those woods, to find what lay beyond. Already accompanied by her daughter Llaune, Lillya had the sense to feel other peoples’ presence beyond the forest, and as the trees gave way, the leaders of Sūr entered upon the domains of the Bre. These people, Brene as they called themselves, had come down from the north, along Lake Deep, into those lands, driven there by the other tribes of the north. At the feet of the Gelen hill, at the forking of the river Cym, the Bre had settled and claimed this territory, reaching from the great northern forest’s edge to the Aelmyndd mountains in the east and the belt of forest in the south, as their own.
For a time, when people were still few and the lands wide, the Bre granted land to the Sūr, coming from the south. There was a silent concord between the people, who still inhabited the lands thinly scattered about, and their affairs were of mutual advantage. The child Llaune was raised up north of the belt of forest, while her parents oversaw their people on both its sides, north and south. Thus it came to be that not only was she cared for by the members of her family and tribe, but also by those of the Bre. Learning from both her own people and the Brene, she grew up to master the arts and secrets of both tribes, as no other outsider would have ever been able to.
It seemed, in the time of her youth, that Llaune was to become a bond between the tribes of Sūr and Bre, to unite them in peace. But as the years went by, the girl grew tall, her hair swung long, more and more people of her tribe moved into the northern lands, pressed by the Brönne, who had become increasingly hostile to their former brethren. On the far side of the belt of forest though, in the lands of Bre, the people grew uneasy about all those many Sūr, foreign still, who did not seem to stop spreading in their lands.
(to be continued)