Post by Scribbles on Dec 21, 2019 20:56:32 GMT -5
Snow Comes to Certovia
This land is still new. An infant in the eyes of the gods. Foliage and small creatures have emerged from small, implanted dreams and ideas of their creators, Morfia and Shamol Rute, took shape. Just as in the dreams of mortals, the dreams of the gods shift and change and so, too, does the landscape of Certovia. Forests that stood bright and resplendent, would bend to the will of the dream and become barren of their livery until the two gods saw fit to restore their regal foliage.
These shifts in the dream are what Ver Statera looks to this day. The handiwork of those whom he set to the task of creating this world. Standing in a meadow surrounded by thick trees, he peered up into the sky to regard the still form of the clouds. So quiet and still were his surroundings that the world seems nothing more than a painting. Closing his eyes, Ver Statera communed with his fellow god of storm, Val Torm.
"Val Torm, have you a thought to bring some life to this creation?"
Moments later, a gentle breeze brushed against Ver Statera's face and suddenly, the picturesque landscape began to sway with the wind. The air was filled with the gentle sounds of leaves rustling. Taking a deep breath, the smells of nature put a grin from his otherwise stoic face.
"Much better. My gratitude, Val Torm."
Ver Statera stood and enjoyed music generated by the newly formed winds rushing through the trees and tall grass that surrounded him. Glancing down, a pathway appeared through the meadow that lead into the forest.
"Very well. Show me what you have created, Shamol Rute," Ver Statera said to himself with a slight chuckle as he began to follow the gently twisting path, allowing his hands to drag through the tall grass.
Leaves fell as their color changed from bright yellows and reds to browns and greys, dancing on the breeze. Delighted by the sight of wilderness creatures jumping and batting at the fallen leaves, he slowed his pace to share in the joy of a large, four legged creature as it went bounding through the trees kicking up fallen leaves. The creature noticed Ver Statera and walked over with a leaf in its mouth. Ver knelt down, took the leaf and gave it a gentle rub on it's narrow snout. Always faithful, the beast looked up to his master with striking eyes. “Thank you, Ven. This is wonderful." he said as he spun the leaf, mesmerized by the tiny dancer between his two fingers.
Leaving the friendly Jaghund behind and continuing along the path, he found himself at the edge of the forest and standing at the edge of a cliff overlooking a vast ocean. Closing his eyes once again, he listened to the sounds of the world around him.
"The cliffs of Akh. Is that what your children will call this place, Morfia?"
A gust of wind blew in from across the water, strong enough to pull the leaf Ver was still carrying, from his hand, though it didn't seem to touch Ver Statera himself.
"I agree, Val Torm. From this vantage point, even one of your storms would seem like a thing of beauty."
The path shifted and turned north, descending into the heart of a deep valley. Thelrodam's Valley, or so the Humans and Alfar called it, was an unbroken sanctuary that radiated a peace enveloping Ver Statera. Everywhere he looked, there were birds playfully chasing one another or singing to the sky as the warm sun washed over them. This place felt familiar to the man-god, though he had never set foot upon this part of Certovia before, that he could remember.
Eventually coming to an ancient tree that had no equal in size, Ver placed a hand gently upon its trunk and looked up through its branches.
"This is where I fell asleep. You're much larger than I remember, old friend. You were here when Scois first came to me and talked of creating this world," he mused as slivers of his memory slowly returned to him and he sat down, leaning back into the giant tree.
"The others have done so much. Beyond anything I had ever dared to expect!" He sat with his eyes closed, recalling the meeting with the other gods as they debated over the creation of Certovia.
"Each of us had our own visions of what this would could be...should be. I realize, now, that any expectations would have fallen far short of the result. How could we deem to know what to create, when we never really knew what it should have been?"
A seed pod fell from the ancient tree and landed beside the divine visitor, who slowly turned to regard it.
"We had no idea what lay ahead, when we took pieces of ourselves and used them to plant the seeds of this world; like naive children, we hoped to bring order to the chaos. How quickly the plans of even the gods can become nothing more than leaves caught in a malstrom."
Something cold startled Ver Statera. How long had he sat there, reliving the past? Had he been asleep again? Was such a thing possible?
The landscape around him had changed. The leaves on many trees had vanished, leaving only evergreens to provide color in a sea of white flakes falling from the sky. Ver Statera held out a hand and let several flakes land into his open palm. A gust of wind blew several flakes around his head as he listened to Val Torm.
"Yes, I remember this. Snow. That is what it was called on one of the other worlds."
As wildlife sought shelter from the storm, Ver sat, still leaning on the ancient tree, and watched the snow pile up around him. What was cold to a god? What was anything to a god that was more dreamer than divine? The last question weighed heavy upon him, amplified by the deafening silence that now engulfed him. An undeniable feeling of loneliness threatened to consume him as he allowed the snow to hide him from view.
Without warning, the snow was dusted off of the melancholy god and he was welcomed by the most curious of creatures. It's glowing face humanoid, it's limbs overly long, giving it a gangly appearance and small wings sprouted from its back. He once had a dream. Or was it a dream? Nothing seemed certain these days. Such a creature, the Sidhe, he knew them as. Without warning, the creature and several newly arrived companions hauled him from the snow and his heart soared. The barren trees were aglow with tiny magical lights of every color he could imagine and everywhere he looked, Sidhe, and faery alike, were dancing, singing songs and playing in the snow drifts without a care in the world. Tiny faery folk continued the task of decorating the tree, flying swiftly among the branches.
"What is this?" Ver Statera gently asked to no one in particular.
One small, winged child continued to tug him along as they adjusted their grip to face him.
"Is day of Statera's Smile! None allowed to be sad this day!" And the smile on the child’s face was the definition of pure innocence and joy.
"But, I am Ver Statera..." he replied with confusion.
"Then you must smile even more!"
The joyful demeanor of all gathered was infectious, and even a god was not immune as a smile came to Ver Statera unbidden. He gave a hearty laugh as he found Ven laying in the snow, a willing subject of a young one’s over-ambitious decorating abilities. And, as the light began to fade, the glow of the magical lights seemed to intensify, creating a glade of multicolored hues. Ver Statera soon found himself joining in their celebrations, sharing song, dance and even partaking in the feast that began at midnight.
As the day’s festivities came to conclusion, the eldest, and largest of the Sidhe stood and turned to face their honored guest.
"We Sidhe, and faery kin, have come together on this day every year for centuries to celebrate Statera's Smile. Not to celebrate your smile. We celebrate to make Ver Statera smile." The gathered crowd began to cheer and clap until Ver Statera stood and all went silent.
"My friends. Your joyous merriment has come to me in the most opportune moment. For I find myself dislocated from the world of my brethren. I must confess that I struggle to find myself worthy of such a celebration"
The elder Sidhe gave a soft smile in return and gently replied, "Worth has little to do with any of this. Statera was in need of friendship, and the Sidhe came. Just as the Sidhe will always be here when Statera needs us."
There was nothing left for Ver Statera to say and so he thanked each in the assembly individually and went back to the ancient tree to sit once more at the base of it’s trunk. Sinking into the snow, he leaned back to rest against his old friend and looked up through it’s bare branches at the soft, twinkling glow.
As Ven curled up next to the man-god, his tail covering his nose, Ver mused, “These creatures are such curious and wonderful creations, are they not? If I could, I would stay here for an eternity. With them and with you, old friend.”
As Ver Statera felt a willful sleep creeping upon him, the Sidhe surrounded the tree and began adding more magical lights throughout the otherwise barren branches. In moments, the ancient tree was ablaze in multicolor lights and decoration. The elder Sidhe sat down in front of Ver Statera, the others following suit and taking a seat in the snow around them. The small faery, who had been tugging on the god earlier, made itself at home on a broad, fur-covered shoulder and fell asleep. Ver rubbed his eyes, watching their forms shimmer in the dim light. Perhaps this, too, was another dream.
“Sleep, Statera. We shall decorate this tree when next we celebrate Statera’s Smile, so that you may look upon us and know that you are never alone,” said the elder in a hushed tone as Ver Statera slowly surrendered to sleep and the world faded away once again. The last words of the elder, echoing in the distance.
“The Sidhe have always, and will always be with you...”
Note* to learn a bit more about the Sidhe please review our lore section at www.defendthenightgame.com/lore/