“Greenface” is a tale recorded by Alfred Sebar in 257 AC, once a scribe to a wealthy Regalian merchant. However, the story of “Greenface” has apparently existed as long as whaling culture. Alfred’s version is the one most commonly available today due to wide distribution thanks to several very active ships. This version was recently reprinted in 290 AC and is a common tale in many northern ports.
This is a tale I heard many times as a lad of the port. I have copied the tale here for future generations:
A gust from the north wind strikes the ships of the ocean. Its chill hugging the crews of the north sea. The wind does not shake the frost hardened men, hunters of the cold northern seas. They were the bane of whale, like many men of the north, scraping the boon of the deep in the form of huge bones and fine meats. In the days where whales swam like minnows in a pond, whale ships hugged the shore for fear of the deep.
A captain of a fine Regalia crew, my (the story teller usually has a relation to the captain in some form. A friend’s uncle or an uncle's friend, what have you), reasoned the thinking of the whale. He saw them go into the deep water, so why couldn't he? Surely the gentle beasts succumb to the other predators of the oceans, so could they show where it is safe? The fine captain decided, the whales must have a safe haven somewhere in the seas, one he would find and exploit for himself.
The mighty captain and faithful crew wandered the shore in their fine vessel, a galleon, hearty and strong. The crew hunted for a fine whale as a guide to glory. For many days they seeked until they found a fine fish a distance off the coast, barely catching the whale's hump and spouting on the horizon. The crew turned port side to follow the glimpse of a whale into the deep. They tracked the mighty whale into the blue, catching up to it at a fine thirty knots, surely a good breeze at their sails. The gods on their sides, the crew cheered as they hooked a barrel into the fish with a well struck harpoon.
For three days the whale swam into the ocean blue, the ship of men close behind. The first night the captain dreamed of the warm sea of whales, their bodies dancing in the water, filling the light blue seas to the horizon. The second day he dreamed of the same warm ocean filled with ships to the horizon. On the third, he dreamt of the whales again, but as he gazed upon the sea, one faced him and opened it's toothy jaws to speak. "The crew." it spoke "On the crew I must feed, for the flesh of the many are worth the flesh of the one." The captain would awake, fearing for his life. He would step into the sunlight glinting off light blue waters. He knew what must be done.
(The storyteller now speaks personally to the viewer) He told me this tale from his prison cell. You must heed this warning: never follow a whale, for Greenface the deceiver of men lurks among the large gentle giants of the sea.
(Usually the good listener would ask “Why Greenface?”)
(Answer) Because it is the color of the faces of those looking upon the ship.
- Most Unionists dislike the story of Greenface due to its obvious connection to demons.