Creative Writing

Backstory: Historical but unauthenticated

This year I am writing a novel and today’s post is a backstory related to one of my characters (unedited).


Historical but unauthenticated

Cra lived high in the mountains, but unlike the rest of her tribe she found the steep, sloping sides with a mixture of sharp and rounded ridges to be a dull and lifeless terrain. She craved greens, browns and other colours. She wanted to smell mosses, dead leaves, blooming flowers and damp soil. She liked the sounds of chirping birds, owls hooting, wind in the leaves and sounds of humans playing, working and talking just out of sight.

This strange obsession with the forest was just one of the things that marked Cra as different as well the fact that she loved to be alone and often spent time apart from the tribe. Perhaps one of the biggest things that set Cra apart from the others was that Cra was small for a rock troll, so much smaller then her friends that it was whispered by them that one of Cra’s parents had to be a changeling. Cra wasn’t bothered by their snickering and she only smiled and romanticized the idea.

Those among her immediate family tolerated her disappearances down the mountainside and into the depths of the forest that ringed the mountain base. The other four families that made up her tribe had expressed, with varying degrees of disapproval, their objections to Cra’s trips down the mountain so much so that Cra’s trips ended at least by daylight.

Cra tried to abide by the wishes of her tribe. She tried to find pleasure in her love of the moon. Many nights she would sit quietly perched on a boulder watching as the clouds hide and reveal that lunar goddess in her dance across the sky until one night it wasn’t enough. She slipped quietly from her perch and stole down the mountain into the forest wanting to see what the moon looked like through the breaks in the forest ceiling. That was how she meet Alwan.

Alwan was big for human. His family farm backed onto the forest and like Cra he enjoyed escaping alone into the depths of it to watch the moon.

They were teens when they meet. They were curious about each other and not inhibited by their parents inflexible thinking. Night after night they snuck away to meet each other until without their even meaning to they found themselves in love.

A troll name Tedar had taken a liking to Cra and was angered when she didn’t return his feelings. By this time Cra knew she was carrying Alwan’s child and they had made plans for her to live with him and raise their child together. However, Tedar wasn’t easily dissuaded. Tedar followed Cra one night down the side of the mountain and he became enraged when he saw Alwan and Cra embrace, a human and a rock troll. He killed Alwan but Cra escaped his wraith and made it back up the side of the mountain to the safety of her tribe to tell her story.

Tedar was banished from the mountains but it was believed that that he stalked the forest at the base of the mountains so that she could never return there. Tedar lived with resentment and wanted to kill Cra and her child. Cra slowly began to fade between heartbreak over Alwan’s death and her mountain prison; her death became inevitable and because of the fate she suffered and because they couldn’t banish the child to the forest it was decided to send her baby to live with a human friend of the Chief Trolls until they could deliberate the fate of the half human and half rock troll baby.


It is the half human and half rock troll child that is a part of the novel that I am writing.

By Shari Marshall – 2021

4 thoughts on “Backstory: Historical but unauthenticated

  1. In case it helps: “…Cra’s trips ended at least MY daylight….”

    This paragraph starts great, but trip on itself. :They were teens when they meet. They were curious about each other and not inhibited by their parents rigid thinking. Night after night they snook away to meet each other until without their even meaning to they found themselves in love.”
    1st sentence = great. 2nd – the word ‘rigid’ snagged me and I think needs more detail, as in rigid – how? what would be rigid to these teens because I don’t trust that my knee-jerk understanding is correct..
    I doubt that you wanted to use a fish for a verb as snook would be, I think you wanted ‘snuck’.
    Finally – I would love to read this paragraph told not by the narrator but from her own thoughts and ending with maybe her wondering if ‘Do I love him or do I love him as the part of the forest that I can talk to?’ – – or some-such.

    Then wow – unexpected twist, Great, but I think this would be so much more powerful if told through her thoughts.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Gary, thank you for reading. It is an unedited piece originally written simply for the background information (not shared) in the novel. “Snook” versus “snuck” made me laugh, perhaps I should avoid sharing unedited pieces, haha. I changed the word rigid to inflexible. I do agree with you that this piece could be a lot of fun if written from Cra’s point of view. Perhaps I will play with that at a later point. As I write this reply, I am thinking wouldn’t it would be fun to write it from Cra, Alwan and then Tedar’s points of view….hmmm…very interesting.

      Thanks again Gary!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Well I enjoyed reading it and hope you’ll recall that I think you’re a great writer and unedited stuff can be really fun.
        To this day I recall my first big attempt to put a story on paper for a teacher. In one scene I had my protagonist order a couple of beers. Just before handing it in, I caught a typo where those beers became beets. I laughed so hard until I realized that I now had to retype the whole page, ugh!

        Liked by 2 people

        1. Haha, beets. I love those typos! I do not miss re-typing full pages on the type writer though but there was something enjoyable about the way the keys clinked and clacked…Thanks Gary

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