Chapter 1: Goldhalbinsel

A long time ago there was a village called Goldhalbinsel. In this village, there lived a few big families. These families were not small like the families of yours and mine. Indeed these were very large families. In fact, they were so large that cousins would bump into each other in the streets and they wouldn’t even know that they had the same great-grandmother.

As in all tales, this one is no different as I will start the story from the very beginning, or atleast, at a beginning that is important to the story. So I shall start with how the village came to be.

Of all the families there, the largest of them was the Bodensohns. They were the family that fled from a nearby town to found Goldhalbinsel. When they first arrived, the town was filled with useless trees and plainly equipped with neither commerce nor activities. They decided among themselves that they liked the place. Therefore, they drew lines in the soil and started to settle down there. They befriended the local lumberjacks working in the forest nearby and started a small trading shop, attracting people from nearby town and villages.

After that, tumultuous times befell the village. Foreign families came and plundered Goldhalbinsel. Of these marauding families, none stayed as long as the Steife-Lippes. They stole trees, crops and other natural resources for the giant scary beast that they worshipped back home called Industrialisierung. And while Steife-Lippe were in Goldhalbinsel, they destroyed the idyllic lifestyle of the village and smudged the landscape with roads, schools, railroads, modern buildings, water piping and introduced electricity, and bureaucracy. To help them retain their grip on the village, the Steife-Lippes became advisers to elders of the Bodensohn family.

The Steife-Lippes also encouraged the arrival of the second family of our tale. They were the Dracheabstammungs. They left their own village, a mighly and a big one called Mittleres Königreich, to go in search of better opportunities elsewhere.

Following closely was another family, the Schwarzes. They arrived seeking a better life for themselves. They came from one of the oldest village in the world but now, the village was getting too crowded and it was difficult to make ends meet.

As they had skills that no one in the village had back then, the Steife-Lippes welcomed them. The Dracheabstammungs were particularly adept in alchemy, seemingly able to turn anything into gold. The Schwarzes, on the other hand, were intelligent and seemed to be very proficient when equipped with quills and parchments. Soon these 2 families slowly made Goldhalbinsel into their own home too.

All this while, the family elders of the Bodensohns had had an understanding with the Steife-Lippes. By appeasing the Bodensohn family elders with corrupt mechanisms like outright bribery, concessions and preferential treatments, the Steife-Lippes ensured their continuing presence in the village.

However, this practise can only go so far as the Bodensohns in general grew resentful of the plundering Steife-Lippes. Soon they made calls to get rid of Steife-Lippes from Goldhalbinsel. The Dracheabstammungs and the Schwarzes also came to realize that a secured future meant being independent from the Steife-Lippes. As a result, the 3 families of Bodensohn, Dracheabstammung and Schwarze got together and decided that they shall rule Goldhalbinsel together. They relied on each other’s strengths while overcoming each other’s weaknesses.

With combined efforts, they ran the Steife-Lippes out of their village. Or so they would like to believe. The truth is, the Steife-Lippes would have left the village anyway because the family fortunes were running dry.

But back in Goldhalbinsel, the families celebrated their new found freedom. They’ve installed the Bodensohns elders as figurative leaders but everybody knew that the real power rest in the hands of ordinary Goldhalbinselians. In fact, they liked that idea so much that they started thinking of themselves not as Bodensohn, Dracheabstammung or Schwarze but as Goldhalbinselians.

The 3 families had all the recipes of being able to live happily ever after but our tale does not end here, as troubling times laid ahead for Goldhalbinsel.

More of this tale in days to come….

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