Saturday, December 10, 2016

A New Mythology--Oramon--The Lost Shadow

   Where Nomra’s tears fell upon the earth, there rose the Seroi, the spirits of grief. They were quiet and settled heavily upon the shoulders of the mourners. At last, the mourners drifted away as night fell, each leaving a tear. The tears glistened around the bier of Onera, sparkling in the night. Only Neron would not leave the funeral, he could not bear to leave Onera there in the dark. The Seroi clustered around him and at last he fell asleep beside the body of his daughter.
   Ariaj carried Nomra to Onerae and they alighted silently near the bier. Nomra came and rested her hand upon the forehead of her daughter.
   “I am sorry,” she said. There was no light save the tears in the night. “Rise.”
   Onera opened her eyes.
   Nomra looked into the eyes of her daughter. There was no light within them. Neron woke as the sun rose and saw his daughter standing before him. She had no shadow and her eyes were lifeless.
   “What is this?” Neron asked. “What have you done?”
   “I have tried!” Nomra replied. “And I have failed. There is more to a being than the body and I do not know whence that part has departed. But I swear I will find it, Neron.”
   “You cannot make me love you again,” Neron said.
   “So be it,” said Nomra. “But I will undo what I have done.”
   Ariaj transformed into a giant raven and carried Nomra away. Neron fled from Onerae and the soulless body of Onera and hid himself in a secret ash grove. The body of Onera stayed on the island and no creature dared go near it.
   “We will search the air for her missing spirit,” Nomra said to Ariaj. She sent Triona to search the seas. She sent Phiron to enquire of the Lights in the heavens. They could find nothing.
At last Nomra asked Nemrus, “Have you seen the spirit of your sister?”
   “I watch all the earth and the animals thereof,” said Nemrus. “Onera’s shade passed by me in the night, in the dark it slipped past, she is gone now.”
   “Whence did she depart?” Nomra begged.
   “To a place where Light can never shine,” Nemrus said. “Her shadow has gone down into the earth. She is within Oramon. Beneath the soil and stone in the heart of Darkness. From Darkness she was formed and to Darkness she has returned.”
   “But her body lives!” said Nomra. “I will find her shadow and reunite it with her body. Where did she enter the earth?”
   “I will show you, but you will have to go into the Dark alone, I will not accompany you.”
Nemrus took her to a cleft in the stone far to the north where the mountains glistened always with ice. The cleft was Dark and into the Dark, Nomra stepped. It was a familiar embrace, the embrace of untold time and unknown place. She had slept in the Dark before Time, before Place, before Light.
   “This is a place of shadow,” said Nomra. “How will I find a shadow amongst shadow?”
   “With Fire,” said Phiron. He had followed her and Nemrus to the cleft and come after Nomra into the Dark. His radiance bloomed bright in the shapelessness and Nomra used his luminance to form them a glittering path into the belly of the world.
   Down they went, and on, but no sign of Onera’s shade could they spy.
   “Onera!” Nomra called. “Forgive me for my jealousy. I have wronged you and your father. Come to me that I may make it right.”
   “Mother,” came a voice from the Dark. “I forgive you, but I cannot come back with you.”
   “Why not?” Nomra asked.
   “Because this is the place where future people will come when they die and it is terrible.”
   “Then come with me, leave this place, leave the Dark!”
   “I must stay and make it a pleasant place. A new place of wonder, like the world above, the one that you made.”
   “Come back to the surface,” Nomra begged. “No one need ever die and come to this place. Come back, your father is heartbroken.”
   “Neron…” Onera said. “And Nemrus, Triona, Ariaj and Phiron.”
   “I am here,” Phiron said.
Onera’s shade emerged from the Dark, into Phiron’s light. Tears were on her face. “I’ve missed you so much,” said Onera, trying to embrace Nomra and Phiron, but she could not touch them, for she was only a shade.
   “Let us return to the Light,” Nomra said. “Your body is there.”
   Nemrus was waiting at the mouth of Darkness.
   “Something is wrong,” Nemrus said. “The deer tell me of distress in the forests afar. We must haste to Onerae. But when they came to Onerae, the body of Onera was gone and all of the animals upon the island were dead.
   “The body without spirit does terrible things,” Nomra said. “For so I was when I slew Onera.”
The sea monster had carried Onera’s body to the mainland and now she laid waste a path of death into the forests. Nemrus, Nomra and Onera’s shade followed the trail of lifeless animals and found the body at the base of an ash tree, where it was about to drink the life from Neron.

   “I am empty and seek to fill myself but nothing satisfies,” said the body.
   “We have brought your soul back to you,” Nomra said. “Do not take Neron’s!”
   “I cannot go back in,” Onera cried, “my body has been defiled.”
   “You must,” Nomra said. “Or Neron will be destroyed.”
   So Onera clave unto her body again and let Neron go.
Onera took on a sadness that had not been before. Neron did his best to bring light back to her eyes, and created more beings and creatures for her.

   Nomra no longer favored Amalteron. She spent much of her time in the cleft, upon the crystal path she had made to find Onera, exploring the dark places within Oramon, forming silver caves and rooms of glowing stone. Here she could be alone in a cold place, in the Dark, away from the world and her loved ones. 
   She saw them occasionally when they met upon Amalteron and they would tell her of the new things they had made. But Nomra was silent about her own creations and the things she found sleeping in the Dark. Neron and Onera had forgiven her, but she had not forgiven herself.

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