A long time ago, there was a river. In watching over this river was a spirit. 'Spirits' are names given to beings without true form, some occupy no space at all, some appear gaseous or ghost-like, but this particular spirit, lets call him the river spirit, existed as the form of a dragon-like creature made of water, with a mask on his face depicting a smiling, jolly old man.This spirit lived in harmony with the occupants of whatever planet it happened to live on, until one day, the planet was conquered. The citizens of this world could do nothing to defend themselves from the aliens, and their village was destroyed. This made the spirit sad. As the citizens of the village fleed their homes, he was left alone. When the invaders settled on the planet, this abused the land and polluted the water of the spirit's river. This corrupted his form, turning him into a great bloated polluted monster that stank of pollution and death and disease and famine. He was not a river spirit anymore. He was a Stink Spirit.
Eventually, the settlers died. The river killed them, their own pollution melted away their homes, their fields and their bodies. And the Stink Spirit was alone. Angry and upset and lonely, he fled the wasteland that was the planet he had happily lived on for thousands of years. He fled, far out across the stars, until he found the Bath House.There, he asked for a bath, one that would free him of his hideous form, but the owners of the bath house refused, claiming that the smell would drive their other customers away. But then, a little girl working there noticed the spirit, and she managed to convince the owner of the bath house, Yubaba, to serve the spirit.
Yubaba agreed, but on the condition that the girl bathe the spirit alone. She filled up a massive bath but soon realised that the spirit could not be cleaned by any means. Until suddenly, she noticed a thorn stuck in the side of the spirit. With help from the frogs working there, she managed to pull the thorn out, and she soon realised it was not a thorn, it was a bicycle, lodged inside the spirit itself.As they pulled, more and more junk cascaded out of the spirit's body, until the pollution of the lake was cleansed from the spirit's body, and it became a formless dragon once more. Thanking the girl and presenting her with a gift of special medicine, it flew off.
Using its newfound powers, its cleansed its homeworld and re-terraformed it back to how it was before. Eventually, the original inhabitants of the planet returned, and there was soon a common story about girl that saved the river, and the stories became legends and the legends became myths. But upon further inspection of the planet in question, we can clearly see that many races and many planets have myths just like this one. So why is it told amongst members of every League race, you ask? The answer is simple: this particular story is true.