Half-orcs are relatively rare in the world, but they do appear in human communities from time to time. The name may be inaccurate; most half-orcs have two apparently human parents, although their birth is often accompanied by rumors of savage minglings in the family’s past. Because of this, half-orc children may be abandoned by their parents to fend for themselves, or sent to live in a temple or monastery in hopes of “purging the orc blood from their veins”.
The sages have their own theories on the origin of half-orcs. According to the eladrin historian Ruidon of Far-lost, orcs were not created by the god Gruumsh, as is commonly assumed, but by the primordial Erek-Hus, the King of Terror, who twisted humans into orcs to fit his needs. After the cataclysmic battle between the dragon god Io and Erek-Hus, which ended with Io split into Bahamut and Tiamat and the King of Terror splattered across two continents, Gruumsh took the abandoned orcs into his keeping. However, the blood of Erek-Hus contaminated the land on which it had fallen; and even today, if a woman eats of food that has grown on a contaminated spot while she is with child, the babe may show orcish features—the ultimate legacy of Erek-Hus.