Monday, July 26, 2010

Creating Vera: Lord Night

I am, rather haphazardly, designing a new fantasy-themed world. "World-building" is a hobby of mine, and one that I begin a great deal better than I end. I don't normally share many creative ideas in my blogs, but I think that is more tragedy than benefit. I am all about benefits these days, as I continue in my quest to get my life on the right set of tracks.

The world is known as Vera. This is a nod to Latin, of course, and the idea of truth. For me, Vera is the true world, the center of an entire creative (and created) universe. I am overly fond of wizards, sorcerers, and the magical arts. Thus, Vera is heavily populated with arcane individuals and their equally arcane sentiments. Many of these mystics dwell in a floating city called Aeralunde. Since, however, I'm teaching a course on Greek Mythology this summer, I have had gods and goddesses on the brain. Today's entry is a part of my rumination on the divine.

Subject: Night (celestial divinity; male aspect)

Lord Night is one of the four creative deities of Vera. By creative I mean that his origin was spontaneous, and that he himself is a creative power. He has fathered gods and mortals, and through him aspects of nature and society have come into being. In religious iconography he is never depicted with a face. His body (as a statue) is divinely masculine, although it can sometimes be androgynous. Statues of Night always wear masks. The masks are often elaborate, but during the Fast of the New Moon, a simple, ebony mask is chosen -- the eyes closed, the lips barely smiling. Lord Night is wed to Lady Moon, but their marriage is an unhappy one. Lady Moon did not wish to marry anyone, but Lord Night demanded her hand from Mother Sun -- otherwise he would cease to honor their agreement to keep the days bright and the nights dark. Lady Moon became Lord Night's wife, but she is only bound to his demesne on the night of the New Moon. At all other times, she has freedom. Lord Night can be cruel He is always capricious. He has been known to work kindly, but this has more to do with his whimsy than with any compassion on his part. The night of the New Moon is his monthly celebration and sacrifices to him are made in Aeralunde and across Vera.

Lord Night has many servants, and even more children. His chief servants are the Varja--shadowy beings who act as messengers of Night's will. The Varja usually appear to those who have attended upon Night's mysteries. These initiates will then interpret the will of Night to their acolytes and the city at-large. Night's temple is one of the largest in Aeralunde, smaller only than the Mother's and the Lady's. His mysteries are experienced by many, but very few initiates have ever claimed to receive the word of the Varja. Less benign than the Varja are the demons, said to have risen from Night's anger at Lady Moon's rejection of him. Lord Night does little to control these nefarious creatures, and they have insinuated themselves among mortals. Another servant of Lord Night is actually the chief messenger of Lady Moon, an enigmatic being known as Lynx. Lynx serves Lord Night on the Night of the New Moon, performing tasks that are too complicated for the Varja. Lynx is not believed to enjoy this service, but since his mistress is Night's wife, he has little choice in the matter. Lynx is a jovial fellow, who appears, much like Lord Night, in dapper dress that is only slightly old-fashioned.

That is good for now. A very basic introduction. I will continue to work on Night, the Varja, Lynx, and my demons (who need a better name) in the coming months. Comment and let me know what you think.    

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