Timit was remarkably tall, broad, and brawny for a Human, nearly as hulking as an Ogryn — or so reckoned a group of travelling performers when they caught a glimpse of him towering over the crowds at a village harvest festival. They asked him if he would like to accompany them and earn a living as an astonishing physical specimen. Before Timit could answer, his parents told the troubadours that for a sack of seventy copper coins, they could have him, or else six hens, a boar, and a sow. Timit, never a lad with clear or ambitious visions of his own future, shrugged and acquiesced. He bid farewell to his chronically impecunious family and began a new life: Timit, the World’s Largest Madcap, literally the biggest fool in all Teleria.
In his new role, Timit wore a jester’s regalia, alongside the ‘slanderer’s collar’ and ‘dunce’s crown’ that peasants were traditionally forced to don in rituals of public humiliation. He would play the perpetual bumbler and butt of every joke. Then, at the end of the show, having been made the laughing stock, Timit the Fool would get his ‘revenge.’ First with his massive size, and then with a clownishly enormous hammer engraved with masques, he would terrify and chase off the rest of
the troupe, who would filter out into the audience to solicit money. Then, as a crowd-pleasing finale, Timit used his hammer to smash anything the audience offered up.
Audiences guffawed at Timit’s humiliations but cheered nonetheless when he ‘wrestled’ and ‘clobbered’ his former oppressors. The reveal of his giant hammer which started as a genuine surprise, but grew by reputation to become an open secret among those who flocked to see him — always drew gasps and laughs. And they began to bring all kinds of things that they wanted to see him crush. Huge vegetables, old furniture, sacks of rats, innumerable other oddities — he
pulverized them all before the cheering throngs. Given the character of some of the towns and hamlets the troupe visited, Timit’s finale occasionally took a macabre turn. Besides vermin, he put down sick or wounded animals, and various people were often put forth as candidates for a squashing, sometimes with frightful sincerity.
Timit wanted to tone down the smashing ritual but was pushed to comply with every request for the sake of profit. Eventually, Timit was presented with a so-called witch, whom the townsfolk swore a Sacred Order inquisitor had condemned to death for evil sorcery. They had dragged their heels in obeying his order, and he was therefore long gone. But the troupe master held their word as good and their coin as valid and ordered Timit to be the executioner. Timit hesitated,
sweating within his metal cone, hearing the baying crowd ringing and echoing within it. Finally, he heeded their chants and crushed the grey-haired woman’s skull with what he hoped was a quick and merciful stroke.
On that very night, witch-cursed or maddened with guilt, Timit crept upon the rest of his troupe as they snoozed drunkenly in the village inn. He laid the same execution upon each and every one of them, giving the troupe master an additional emasculating hammer strike. Timit fled aimlessly from the discovery and commotion, mulling his resentments and lamenting that he had never known a single loving soul, not his grasping sharecropper parents nor the false family of his troupe. The reasonable and mild-mannered Timit faded away, replaced by a hardened, embittered killer.
One fateful night he came to a crossroads and saw, to his amazement, a woman dressed like him, as a fool, in a jangly patchwork of jester’s garb and noble’s plate armor. She laughed aloud when she saw him, and he laughed along with her, two fools driven to wandering madness. She was Kaja the Wry, and Timit became infatuated with her within hours of their meeting. She was the commanding yet sympathetic presence he needed in his life — she treated Timit as a comrade rather than a freak or a bumpkin and was always coming up with new, amusing diversions for the two of them. He was doggedly devoted to Kaja and her unhinged charisma, and as she pursued her violent prankster’s revenge upon the world that had mistreated them both, Timit wished only to please her. With her leadership and his muscle, they lived a happy life of crime, anarchy, and destruction together. Timit’s colossal hammer found a new purpose, shattering the bricks of noble houses and the chains of the enslaved. When the two were pressed in battle, Kaja proved brilliantly distracting with her infuriating jibes, ridiculous gadgets, and outrageous acrobatics — the better to set up a lethal blow from Timit’s slow, ponderous weapon. As they sowed chaos across Anhelt, neither had ever felt more fulfilled.