I built this yurt with the skin I flayed off my enemies’ backs. Please, come inside for a drink

Greetings, weary traveller, and welcome to my family’s yurt! I built it using the hide and bones of more than 90 men I slew with my own hand. Come to think of it, many of them looked quite a lot like you. But enough chit chat – please come inside for a coffee!

Before we sit, you must partake of our customary welcome drink. By sharing this 86% spirit, we enter into a pact of everlasting goodwill between our two families. If you do not finish it in one shot, I will be honour-bound to gut you where you stand.

Glory be upon you, my brother – you finished it! Don’t worry about the red tinge; it only looks like that because it’s a special brew I distilled from the blood of a neighbouring tribesman. He died of hepatitis before I could hunt him down.

My friend, why have you begun retching? Perhaps you’d like to wash the blood spirit down with some fermented horse milk? Remember, if you regurgitate my peace offering I’ll have to disembowel you. Please don’t make me do that.

Good! Now, while my wife prepares some special coffee brewed from horse dung, let me tell you how I built this magnificent yurt.

It all began when I turned 13. To prove my worth as a man, I embarked upon a mission of great danger and immeasurable honour. I was destined to settle my great-grandfather’s blood feud by slaying our sworn enemies, the Yak’hai clan.

Over the coming years, I vanquished scores of Yak’hai men in hand-to-hand combat. Their prowess with the blade was no match for my raw fury and frighteningly strong thighs, and I inevitably defeated each foe who dared come before me. I flayed the skin off every victim and kept their bones as trophies.

During one such battle, a Yak’hai pigdog mortally wounded my noble steed. I found myself all alone, stranded on the freezing tundra, with only the man’s lifeless corpse for company. As darkness descended and the sweat above my brow started to freeze, there was only one thing I could do: fashion the man’s remains into a makeshift yurt.

I learnt two things that night: human skin is the ultimate insulator, and the flesh of a freshly slain man doesn’t taste nearly as bad as you’d think. When I made it back to my village six days later, I set about constructing a full-size yurt out of my stash of human remains.

Half a century later, my home still stands. The femurs you see supporting the weight of the ceiling, the decorative teeth sewn into the walls … the doorflap that’s made of 182 human cheeks sewn together … these treasured family heirlooms have witnessed the birth of all my 11 children and 104 grandchildren.

Indeed, I married my wife in this very yurt. And now you have come here with your, ah, extremely attractive girlfriend, whom I assume you will also marry very soon.

While we’re on the topic … did I mention that it’s, ahem, customary in my culture for a guest to, ah, offer his wife to their host for the evening?

Of course, I know that this, er, tradition may seem completely sexist and outdated to you. And there’s no way I would want to, um, sleep with a beautiful young woman in place of my 70-year-old wife.

However, it’s a sacred, uh, tradition. Unfortunately I’ll have no choice but to disembowel you both if you refuse.

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