|Title||The Missing Link|
|Release Date||August 13th, 2014|
|510 / 610 (+ 65 / 108)|
|4.5 (+ 1.75)|
|59 / 65 (+ 3 / 5.5)|
|0.625 (+ 5.5 (+6)% / 0.5%)|
|32 / 35.5 (+ 2.5 / 5.5)|
|30 / 33.5 (+ 0.5 / 4)|
- For outdated and now non-canon lore entries, click here.
- Story #1
- Story #2
|Gnar is an excitable yordle whose playful antics can erupt into a toddler’s outrage in an instant, transforming him into a massive beast bent on destruction. Frozen in True Ice for millennia, the curious creature broke free and now hops about a changed world he sees as exotic and wondrous. Delighted by danger, Gnar flings whatever he can at his enemies, be it his bonetooth boomerang... or an uprooted tree.
Before the ice had given the Freljord its name, there existed a land brimming with wonder—that is, if one could see the world through the eyes of Gnar.
A young yordle with boundless energy, Gnar and others like him lived openly among the hardy tribes of the northlands. Though barely big enough to leave footprints in the snow, his temper rivaled that of beasts ten times his size, and he would erupt with a babble of curses the moment anything went amiss. For this reason, he felt more kinship with the greater and wiser creatures, who kept their distance from mortals. To Gnar, they looked like overgrown, white-furred yordles… and that was good enough for him.
While the tribes foraged across the tundra, gathering wild berries and tasty moss, Gnar collected more essential items, like rocks, pebbles, and the muddy remains of dead birds. His greatest treasure was the jawbone of a drüvask. When he tugged it from the cold earth, he squealed with glee and flung it as far as he could.
It landed two hops away.
Thrilled by this early success, Gnar carried his “boomerang” wherever he went. The world would try its best to offer him new delights—shiny lint, sweet nectar, round things—but none could match the pure joy he felt in throwing and catching his cherished weapon. He now considered himself a hunter, and trailed herds of wild beasts that paid him no mind.
But even he could sense change coming to the land. The sky seemed darker. The winds felt colder. The mortal tribes who had once foraged together, now appeared to hunt each other…
The big white yordles would know what to do. Gnar would go to them.
Using all of his hunting skill, he tracked them into the snow-capped peaks of a vast mountain range, much farther than he had ever wandered before. As he approached unseen, he also saw more mortals than he could count. This was exciting, but no one else seemed too happy about it.
Then the ground shook, and split apart. For the first time in Gnar’s life, it seemed as though everyone else was throwing tantrums. The mortals yelled. The big yordles roared.
But the monster’s arrival silenced them all.
Heaving itself up from the newly opened abyss, it bore huge horns, whipping tentacles, and a single eye, burning with strange light that made the fur on Gnar’s back crawl. While some mortals fled at the sight, he began to feel an odd pain in his chest—it was like the thought of losing his boomerang, or never being hugged again. This horrible thing wanted to hurt his new friends.
And this made him angry. In that moment, Gnar truly raged.
All he could see was the monster. In a flash, he was in the air, leaping toward it. In one paw, he grasped a snowball… or so he thought. In fact, it was a boulder plucked from the mountainside, for Gnar had grown as large as the big white yordles. He would send this monster back where it came from, by walloping its face!
But the blow never landed. Gnar felt a chill colder than any winter, one that seemed to turn the air itself into ice—truly, this elemental magic froze him in place, biting through his shaggy fur. Everything, including the monster, became quiet. The yordle’s strength and anger melted away. A deep tiredness crept into his limbs, and he fell softly asleep.
Gnar napped for a long time. When he finally awoke, he shook the frost from his shoulders, breathing heavily. Everyone else was gone. With no monsters to fight and no friends to protect, he felt very small and alone again.
The land was very different, too. There was snow everywhere, blanketing everything as far as his wide eyes could see. Still, he let out a happy yelp when he saw his beloved boomerang lying beside him, and scurried away to find something to hunt.
Even now, Gnar has no grasp of what took place that fateful day, nor how he escaped. He simply marvels at the world before him, with so many oddities to collect and places to explore.
Snow falls all morning, blanketing the earth in fresh coats of white. One by one, feathery flakes trickle from the sky, gently at first, and then rapidly in unison. Soon, the howling blizzard muffles all sounds save for a peculiar racket coming from a nearby cave, where a shock of orange and blue bounces up and down, left to right.
Gnar bustles about, annoyed at the world. He has been drawing in the snow under the shelter of rock and stone, but nothing appears the way he imagines. Gripping a bone boomerang almost the size of his torso, the young yordle curses at the ground.
“Shubbanuffa!” says Gnar. This means one of two things. Either he believes the snow is being uncooperative, or he wants some sweetmilk. No one can say for certain.
With a jump and a skip, Gnar tumbles from one unfinished sketch to another, each depicting similar scenes. There they are, bands of carefree yordles living happily among the tribes of the frigid north. Sometimes, wild beasts stand a head above his kin. Other times, Gnar himself towers over everyone else. These little differences do not faze him. Instead, his wide eyes fixate on his boomerang, his paw guiding it to trace out a grand shape with long, sweeping strokes.
“Onna legga,” Gnar mutters to himself. This means he wishes not to be distracted. In the past, others have confused this with “Oga lagga,” meaning he would very much enjoy a hug.
Placing the boomerang in his mouth to free up his paws, Gnar leans downward. His claws pick away bothersome specks of dirt. His nose sniffs the ground, searching for any stray pests daring to deface his work. Pleased with the results, Gnar somersaults back to take a wider look.
The powdery snow paints the picture of a one-eyed monster with tentacles the size of mountains.
“Wabbo!” Gnar cheers, as his boomerang drops from his jaw. The monster is the right amount of scary—just as he imagined. With one arm, it slices through an entire herd of elnük. With another, it holds a whole bundle of elkyr, like sticks.
“Ganaloo mo,” Gnar grumbles. Upon further inspection, it appears his elnük look too much like elkyr. This will not do. As he moves to touch up his piece, he stops. His large ears perk, their violet insides twitching with vigilance.
Footsteps approach in fours from outside his cave. Perhaps it is the monster, and perhaps it has come to express its discontent with how it is being portrayed.
Grasping his boomerang, Gnar stands upright on his two hind legs. “Nakotak!” he declares, ready to face his rival once more. In truth, he is thrilled. Ever since he woke up from that long nap, he has wondered where the monster took his friends. Finally, he is about to get some answers.
But what trespasses into his cave sees with not one eye, but two.
And rather than tentacles, it has legs, stout and stocky. Coarse fur covers its entire body, forming a frosted mane to crown its head and back. Its scarred face appears worn and bitter, marked by two ivory tusks and a stiff, pudgy snout.
This is a strange-looking creature, Gnar thinks to himself.
As the giant drüvask boar lumbers inside, it sees only the comfort of stone overhead. Its sighs are deep, its breath strands of mist fogging the chill air. The beast’s hooves shake the ground beneath, stirring up snow like splashes of milk. After a few heavy steps, all of Gnar’s art is ruined.
Gnar’s boomerang strikes the boar right between its eyes. The dazed beast shakes its head, blinking hastily as it lets out an angered growl. Gnar pants in a frenzy, wielding his prized weapon up high, enough for the boar to identify its source of pain.
Like thunder and lightning, the cave booms twice with roars of rage.
Tumbling out come the boar and a positively enormous yordle. Grown to a size larger than even his foe, Gnar pummels the intruder with his now massive, fisted hands. His wrath fuels every punch, jabbing blow after blow into the boar’s thick hide.
The fight seems to end as quickly as it began, until the savage beast somehow wrangles its hooves under Gnar’s chest to kick him away. The colossal yordle collapses next to his cave, bundles of snow rising as he lands. With his spiny back exposed, his head woozy, Gnar hears repeated huffs and puffs, and the clatter of those same bullish hooves scraping faster and faster on the wintry soil.
The blizzard wails, louder than before, as though the Freljord is bracing itself for the coming loss of one of its own.
“GNAR!” the hulking yordle bellows, leaping away from the boar’s charge. In a flash, he slams his bulky arms against the beast’s behind, sending it forward to crash into the rocky wall of the cave’s entrance.
A stunted screech pierces the wind. Frozen rocks crumble onto the boar, now lying still.
Gnar trudges toward the beast, his breath short and rushed. He nudges its limp body with his foot. There is no resistance.
He decides it has fallen asleep, but remains perplexed why its eyes are open. Curiously, the snow around the boar turns a deep red. All of this seems quite odd, and yet, it is not the first time this has piqued Gnar’s interest.
His memory flickers with similar images. Before the long nap, he would see different tribes yelling gibberish as they threw pointed sticks at one another. Their game looked at once exciting and exhausting, and Gnar would watch them until enough of one side fell asleep on red snow. They must have been awfully tired, just like this strange, tusked yordle.
Thinking of those bygone days makes Gnar quiet. He remembers waking up from the long nap, believing the world took away everything he ever knew. His breath slows, his shoulders slump, his feet shrinking until even he would not believe that he stands in his very own footprints from mere seconds ago.
The small yordle dashes into his cave to retrieve his boomerang, hugging it with all his might. It is the one thing that did not leave him after the long nap.
For a moment, Gnar glances at the boar. It rests out in the elements without a whisper. Setting his boomerang lightly on the ground, he skitters back into the storm.
The blizzard surges on. Gnar is not bothered, but maybe, the slumbering beast is. With his tiny paws, he gathers all the snow he can, and carefully places it atop the boar.
It is sleeping after all, and it will need a blanket.
|THE HUNTER HUNTED
The jungle does not forgive blindness. Every broken branch tells a story.
I've hunted every creature this jungle has to offer. I was certain there were no challenges left here, but now there is something new. Each track is the size of a tusklord; its claws like scimitars. It could rend a man in half. Finally, worthy prey.
As I stalk my prize through the jungle, I begin to see the damage this thing has wrought. I step into a misshapen circle of splintered trees. These giant wooden sentinels have stood over this land for countless ages, their iron-like hides untouched by the flimsy axes of anyone foolish enough to attempt to cut them down. This thing brushed them aside like they were twigs.
How can a creature with this level of strength disappear so easily? And yet, even though it has left this unmistakable trail of destruction, I have been unable to lay my eye upon it. How can it appear like a hurricane then fade into the jungle like the morning mist?
I thrill in anticipation of finally standing before this creature. It will make a tremendous trophy.
Passing through the clearing, I follow the sound of a stream to get my bearings once more. There I see a small shock of orange fur, crouching, waiting. I spy on it from a distance. A tiny fish splashes out of the stream and the creature scrambles for it, diving gleefully into the rushing water. To my joy, I realize it's a yordle. And a hunter, at that!
This is a good omen. The beast will be found. Nothing will escape me.
The yordle's large ears perk up and face toward me. He runs on all fours with a bone boomerang in hand, quickly stopping in front of me. He babbles.
I nod in appreciation at the young yordle and venture onward. I traverse the difficult terrain with ease, trying to pick up any sign of my quarry. As I try to pick up his scent, a distraction. I'm startled by strange chittering. The yordle followed me. I cannot allow him to disrupt my hunt. I face him and point into the distance. He looks at me quizzically. I need to be more insistent, good omen or no.
I rear back and let out a roar, the wind whipping the yordle's fur and the ground rumbling beneath us. After a few short seconds, he turns his head and, with what I think could be a smile, he holds up his small boomerang. There can be no further delay. I snatch the weapon out of his hand and expertly throw it into a tree, impaling it high amongst the branches. He turns and scrambles for it, jumping frantically.
I barely get ten paces when a roar shakes me to my very spine. The deafening crack of stone and wood echoes all around. Ahead, a giant tree crashes across my path. The bone weapon of the yordle juts out from its trunk.
An unearthly growl rises behind me.
|I've made a terrible mistake.
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