[!] It was upon that morning when Lily Peregrin spoke her final words and vanished into the ethereal. It would only be two hours later when an explosion of angry insects swarming around a beehive revealed a message in a bottle crammed within its honeyed interior. This message contained the last will and testament of Lily Peregrin.
The Vision from My Eyes
The Last Wisdom of Lily Peregrin
I did not lead a beloved life. None shall sing my name in their songs when I am rotting in the dirt. I shall be washed up and forgotten, restricted to merely a name on parchment in Halfling records. An obligatory inclusion within our fair folk's history. I was rude, blunt and plainly a pain in the arse of halflingkind. And yet, I stand proud, because I know in the end, I was the first domino in a new golden age of the weefolk.
It all began when I was a young'un in my twenties. I saw the Golden Age of my mother, Iris the Great, thrive and then extinguish. The prosperous time of Old Honeyhill came to an end with a swift stab from a biggun assassin. My mother lay dead in my arms behind that bokolo stable, and with her died the old Peregrin regime. The dynasty that was heralded as the greatest in halfling history. My older sister, Doctor Sorrel Peregrin, took the shovel's burden. As I grew up, I watched her wither and fade into a shell of her former self. She was not worthy of the position; I have always loved her, but I always knew it, even from that young age. She held not the mental fortitude it so required. I knew that I was the only one left who could do it; The dynasty must survive. Nothing could destroy the Peregrins, for we were chosen by Knox. I had seen the holiness that radiated about Iris, and heard the tales of her exploits, and I knew this to be true. And so, on that fateful night, I took Thainship. We burnt down the Old Honeyhill. It was a vestige of a bygone era; A standard of liveliness that I could never replicate. I only ever saw it as a graveyard after Iris died. We built New Honeyhill in the ruins of the old village, and it was beautiful. We began to bud as a society once more, opening up to a new spring of our people. I kept council of my trusted Elders; childhood friends and heirs of ancient Halfling houses such as mine. And yet, all was not well.
My most trusted advisor, Mimosa Applefoot, challenged my rule. I always thought myself superior to her, in truth; She was smart, but I always thought I was smarter. Her threats still scared me, however. The Applefoots were the founders of the Thain system, and before my mother returned our line to Arcas, they were a much more powerful and influential family. We had stolen their spotlight, and in my youthful ignorance, I thought she aspired to win back her ancestral title. My rage consumed me, anger at my betrayal, anger at the thought of my mother's legacy dying to the hands of my former friend. In Mimosa, I saw the face of that biggun assassin; A killer, ready to destroy all my family had. What was worse was the man on her side. Cyris Collingwood. I had heard stories about the insanity of this man from the days of Bramblebury; His delusions of kinghood, and claims that he was visited by Knox and given a crown. He denied the Knoxist religious teachings of the modern church and proposed his own, leaning on biggun ideologies. He was an enemy of Arugula, waiting to be swept into the tides for his heresy. And thus, I unleashed my rage at a peaceful debate. I threw the Thain Shovel for Mimosa's head in an act of blood rage, and with it, I surrendered my power.
In my act of defiance, my many supporters turned on me. My own daughter, Dolly Peregrin, voted against me. I was the last true Thain, a patriot of a bygone era of dictatorship. Democracy reinvigorated itself within the weefolk, that slow disease that rots away all it touches. The fuel for the fire of hatred and corruption. The spear that brought down Bramblebury. The system that my brother, Monkey Peregrin, fought to cleanse and destroy. In my ignorance and passion, I had allowed it to fester once more, and thus allowed myself to be vanquished. And so, they shall remember me as a tyrant. They shall see me as the last barrier against progress and reform. They shall see me as Lily the Terrible.
But perhaps I was wrong, in the end. The weefolk have found new stride under their new leadership, and have prospered far more than they ever could under my tutilege. Maybe it took the end of the First Peregrin Dynasty to reset the board. To provide a blank slate for our circle of life to continue. What haunts me, deep down, is that I shall never know. I will never see the outcome of my legacy, nor will I be able to study it, like I so studied the politics of our kind throughout the ages. I leave this mantle to my children. I still believe that The Peregrins were led back to the greater halfling race for a reason. I still feel the ripe energy of Knox pulsing through my blood, even as it grows stale and cold. My last message to my descendants is this: bear witness to what has transpired in this age, and use it as your weapon. See our faults and adapt. Win back that damnable shovel.
I bid you all fond farewell. Do what I could not.
The Greater Peregrin Family
The Weefolk of The Realm
LONG LIVE THE PEREGRINS