The Story of Goatboy

By Goatboy

      I was born at a very young age (im fond of saying) to the wife of the alchemist and reputed recluse Horee. My mother died during childbirth exclaiming as her last words, "God it hurts!" and left my father to raise me by hand in a shanty town east of the city of Highport. Our nameless settlement consisted of nine closely-knit families who had made their way into the bleak wilderness for one reason or another, and now strived only for daily bread and an existence far from city life. We enjoyed our lives together and treated each other as kin, and it would have been an almost normal upbringing had it not been for the gross birth defect that cursed my head and face giving me a distinct resemblence to a goat. Thus I was given the nickname Goatboy.

      The others in our little community made every effort to treat me as a normal person and to give me proper respect based on my merits, and I never knew how lucky I had been until at the age of 18 I decided to make the trip to Highport in search of my fortune. From the moment I entered the gates it was obvious to me from the expressions of horror and disgust on the faces of everyone i met that I would always be alone here, unless I could find someone to accept me for who I really was. Luckily I did.

      Her name was Sarah and she was a 20 year old student of alchemy at the local university. She was the happiest, brightest person I had ever met, despite the fact that she was completely blind, and she took great interest in the fact that I was the son of the famous alchemist Horee. We talked for hours about our lives and we quickly became friends that day. She introduced me to her family and her father offered me a job as a laborer in his blacksmith shop where I began to learn the trade. But the work was tedious and uninteresting, and I soon grew tired of repairing broken weapons and armor for little pay and even less respect. So Sarah suggested that I enter the university, surely I would find my calling there. I took beginning courses in every subject offered and found I had a real knack for business, but with my unusual disfiguration I was assured that I would never succeed in that field. Discouraged and depressed I sat down in the university center to consider what I would do when I heard the sound of a battle cry and the clash of weapons from one of the nearby buildings. I ran to investigate and there in full battle gear were two huge men practicing what I now know to be the skill of bashing one another to the ground.

      I called out to them, "what are you doing! why are you fighting like this?" They ignored me and continued, beating each other senseless for no apparent reason, as an instructor looked on. I had never witnessed this kind of brutality and felt obligated to stop them from hurting one another, so i forced myself between them and with all my strength pushed them apart. This enraged them and they quickly turned to take aggressive stances against me. We stared at each for several seconds as they examined my deformities in disbelief and the instructor moved quickly to the door and locked us in. Suddenly one of them cried out and charged toward me at full speed, raising his weapon to strike. Knowing that I could not escape and fueled only by adrenalin I quickly circled him and in his blind rage he passed me banging his head against the wall, knocking him unconsious. The instructor looked down at him and shook his head in disapproval. The other man was outwardly dumb-struck by his cohort's blatent failure to harm me and his eyes narrowed as he reassessed me as an opponent. Slowly drawing a longsword from his belt he began to approach me in a mechanichal series of small steps, raising his sword to belt level. I stood before him shaking, sure I was about to be slaughtered, when he stabbed at me with great force. I quickly stepped out of the way. With his arm extended far beyond me in a clumsy fashion I thrust my shoulder hard against his, forcing him to fumble his weapon, and with all my might kicked him in the groin. The man clutched his mid-section and fell to his knees whimpering with tears in his eyes. I felt like I would faint.

      That day I found my calling as a professional fighter and have trained ever since. The two men I had fought quickly became my allies when I joined the academy, and we often reminisce about our meeting in good humor. My success as a fighter earned me great fame in the city of Highport, and many people now regard the name Goatboy with respect. Sometimes I see some of the same people that cringed from my appearance as I walked through the streets, and they wave and call out my name. That is a good feeling.