Thursday, 30 October 2014
Lurking suspiciously near the headwaters of the Timpopo river, Nurkibahoo is a land of dark and fearsome reputation. If the tribes of the Leech Coast dare to mention the word ‘Nurkibahoo’ it is only in terrified whispers accompanied by vigorous, and not always successful, attempts to avoid soiling themselves. Once, so legend has it, Nurkibahoo was an earthly paradise, home to the Great Mountain Gods and an assortment of lesser deities that did their cleaning and looked after the garden. But these gods long ago disappeared and what crept into the void to replace them were, so stories tell, malignant spirits of terrible evil: fell creatures that would make even the Nazgul shift nervously. The archaeological evidence does not fully support this story: ancient inscriptions tell of the presence in early Nurkibahoo of a proto-Egyptian civilisation known as the Clunj. The Clunj seem to have adopted Egyptian tomb building techniques but their civilisation appears to have ended after rampant speculation led to the collapse of the world’s first pyramid selling scheme. Now, Nurkibahoo is the land that the land that time forgot has forgotten. Tales abound of a wilderness filled with strange ruins and impenetrable jungles; of dismal swamps and noisome smells. English explorers reputedly reached a small part of it in 1678 and established a small settlement named New Grimsby. But even if this were true, nothing more since has been heard from them. Either they died of disease, probably through the filthy conditions; or were reduced to cannibalism, probably through boredom.