Gran Kain was a god of destruction. When he saw the races Einhasad had created, Elves, Dwarves, Orcs and Arteias, he became curious and jealous. He imitated Einhasad and created a form in his own image. Then he went to see Shilen, their oldest daughter, and asked her to instill spirit into the form. Shilen was very surprised and told him, "Father, why do you want to do such a thing? Einhasad, my mother, is responsible for creation. Please do not covet the type of work that is not yours. A creature who receives life from a god of destruction will only bring about disaster."
But Gran Kain would not give up. After much cajoling and persuading, finally he was able to obtain Shilen's consent. "I will do it then. But I have already given the spirit of Water to my mother. So the only thing I can give you is the leftovers." Shilen gave the spirit of stagnant and rotten water to Gran Kain. Gran Kain gladly accepted it.
However, Gran Kain felt that it was not enough to bestow only one spirit on his creature. So he went to see Pa'agrio, his oldest son. Like Shilen, Paagrio also warned his father. However, he could not refuse Gran Kain. So he gave the spirit of dying fire to Gran Kain. Gran Kain gladly accepted it.
Sayha, in his turn, gave his father the spirit of wild and violent wind.
Satisfied, Gran Kain took everything that was given to him and cried, "Look at the living creatures I am making! Look at they who are born with the spirit of Water, the spirit of Fire, the spirit of Earth and the spirit of Wind. They will be stronger and wiser than the Giants! They will rule the world!"
Gran Kain shouted with great pride to all the world and instilled life into the creatures of his own image. However, the result was terrible. His creatures were weak, stupid, sly, and cowardly. All the other gods despised Gran Kain's creatures. Overcome by the shame of his failure, Gran Kain abandoned his creation and went into hiding for a time. These creatures were called Humans. They could not do any one thing well and thus become slaves to the Giants, doing all sorts of menial labor. The life of Humans was not any better than that of animals.
After the Fall of the Giants the former slave races were suddenly left to their own devices. The Elves, who had been the race responsible for politics during the Age of the Giants, were first to take control of the situation, but their position was soon challenged by the Orcs who drove the them with sheer military might out of the heartlands of the continent. The Elves tired to seek help from Dwarves and Arteias but their pleas were turned down by both races. Left with no allies to wage war against the Orcs, the Elves bitterly bemoaned their fate. Then suddenly a stranger with short ears and an ape-like face appeared among their ranks. The stranger knelt before the Elven king, who peered closer and discovered that the creature was a representative of the Humans; he wore a crown made of tree branches.
"What is it, leader of the lowly Humans?" the Elven king asked. "Do you come to mock our plight?" The Human bowed his head and spoke: "No, wise king. We come to see if our feeble forces may be of any assistance." The Elves rejoiced, for though the Humans were foolish and weak, their great numbers could be of help in battle. "Very commendable of you, Human king," the Elven king acquiesced. "Insignificant beings you may be, but your devoted loyalty and willingness to sacrifice your lives for us is admirable. Go forth in battle to victory and you shall gain standing directly beneath the Elves."
The Human king bowed deep before the Elven king, then lifted his head, facing his Elven counterpart. "Most noble Elven king," he spoke, "We Humans have but one request to make before we battle for the glorious victory of the Elven race. Our powers are too weak. Our teeth cannot even scratch the skin of the Orcs and our nails are useless against their muscles. We beg of you, grant us the power to stand against them. Teach us the knowledge of your magic."
This bold proposition left the Elves shocked and infuriated. Teach magic to humans? Never! They gestured, invoking the spells to turn the Human to a heap of ashes, but the Elven leader Veora interceded. She felt the request was no threat and should be honored. The Humans were too weak, and it would be doubtful that they could beat the Orcs without help. And with their inferior minds, the Humans would be no threat were they even able to learn magic. Thus she took a position that would later cost her life.
With their natural cunningness the Humans quickly absorbed the ways of magic, learning much faster than the Elves had anticipated. Since their ancestors had gotten from Shilen only the spirit of stagnant and rotten water, they could never emulate the true Water magic of the Elves, but by combining the Elvish spells with the spirit of dying fire they had obtained from Pa'agrio, the Human mages developed a formidable Fire-based magic of their own.
The Human bodies, though not as big and hard-boned as those of Orcs, had been strengthened through constant labor and infighting among their kind. The spirit of wild and violent wind that Sayha had granted them made their archers and dagger users fast - not as nimble and light-footed as Elves but much quicker than the heavy Orcs. All Humans were adept with their hands and could skillfully wield weaponry of any kind. But more than anything else, their numbers were huge and impressive. In a short amount of time, the Human army became a formidable force.
The Human-Elf alliance gradually began to overtake the Orcs. As the tides of battle turned in favor of the alliance, the Dwarves shifted allegiance from the Orcs and began to provide military equipment to the Humans. With the stronger armor and sharp weapons crafted by the Black Anvil Guild, learning from Dwarven instructors how to use pole arms and wield heavy axes, the Humans could now defeat the Orc army without the aid of Elven forces.
The Elves grew uneasy, even as the alliance victories grew in number. They could sense the Humans growing stronger and beyond their control. Yet the Elves did not allow their uneasiness to grow to concern, for they could not imagine that the lowliest of them all - the Human trash - could conceive a rebellion. And with final victory over the Orcs within reach, the Elves had no time to dwell on worries about the Humans. Meanwhile the Humans continued to learn higher forms of magic, and eventually the war ended with the victory of the Human-Elf alliance. The Orcs were forced to sign a humiliating peace treaty and quickly retreated to the safety of their original lands in the northern parts of what would later be known as Elmore.
The king of the Orcs laughed as he departed for Rion: "Foolish Elves. This victory is not yours, but that of the dirty Humans. How do you propose to control these monsters of your creation?"
True to his bitter words, the Elves now faced a new threat - the Humans. But after the long battle, the Elves were left too weary and weak to fight. In contrast, the Humans with their new powers of magic, were strong. And thus, the Humans rose up against the Elves.
Too late, the Elves realized they had taken under their wings the offspring of dragons. A fierce battle of magic versus magic once again shook the land. But the Elves were too weak to suppress the forces of the Humans. They were slowly pushed back until they were forced to retreat to the safety of their forest. From that secure position, they prepared for the final clash against the Humans. Elven magic was strongest in these woods and they sought to use this advantage to victory.
The Elves dug deep dungeons that quickly echoed with the clanging of swords and shouts of battle. But the ultimate victors in the three-month siege were the Humans. Neither Elven pride, nor the magical powers of the Elven woods, nor even the superior magic of the Elves could stand against the endless stream of Human armies. The Elves suffered horrible losses and eventually escaped deep into the forest. In retreat, they cast strong barriers around their woods to prevent the trespassing of Humans and other races.
And thus, Humans became the conquerors of all the land. Their lowly descent, having been put together from leftovers, proved to be both a curse and a blessing in the competition with other races. Having some of Maphr's essence in them, Humans could learn from Dwarven pole arm users a skill like Earthquake, an earth-shattering spear thrust, but since the spirit Maphr had contributed in the creation of mankind was that of barren and contaminated earth, they could not create wealth. The most a Human could ever aspire to was to cook up some potions from fish oil, but they could never craft even the simplest dagger or a plain leather helmet.
On the other hand, having a limited choice of what he or she could do drove the individual Humans towards ever more perfection in their chosen profession. Human pole arm users might have to buy everything they needed on the market, but they became better with their chosen weapon than a Dwarf could ever aspire to. Human healers could not cast the same support magic as their Elven colleagues, but when it came to quickly restoring a fighter's lost blood on the battlefield or even resurrect them from a temporary death, Elven Elders were no match for a Human Bishop.
Normally one would assume that especially Elves with their much longer lives had more time to study all the aspects of their magic in depth, reaching an unsurpassed mastery in their chosen profession. But exactly that long life expectancy makes them not too eager on learning, while Humans, who know that even if they do not get killed by an enemy they will reach the natural end of their life after 80 years at most, are under great pressure to learn everything at once, before it is too late.
 Discussion at Lineage 2 Role-Playing Association