- Louis Sauvain
Asullus Anguli XI ... Asullus’ Corner
So, Asullus here once again, along wi’ trusty an’ sweet Morphia, the Spritae, still actin’ as our scribe, fer all ye oldsters an’ wee ones alike as ha’ been writin’ wi’ yer requests an’ demands — some more polite than others — to be informed o’ the most serious an’ needful questions o’ our time an’ tryin’ to bring answers to the queries such as those as reach the Tower o’ the North.
Now, today, Ba-Nessa o’ Tuzanne ha’ sent a missive inquirin’ as to the fate o’ Sorcerers in our world. Well, ‘tis no’ me best subject, but I’ll try to make some sense out o’ all o’ it – no’ from personal perspectives o’ course, but what this old Mule ha’ observed o’er the years o’ watchin’ these High Folk in their comin’s an’ goin’s so to speak.
So, as Master Silverstrus, me Master fer a very, very, long, long time a-fore he went on at the end o’ the Battle o’ the Linden Trees, ha’ told those under his tutelage o’er the years, once ye becomes a Sorcerer, yer Life-span do seem to be connected to yer use o’ yer Sorcery, itself. That is, e’ery use o’ Sorcery by the gifted an’ talented do cost the Practitioner some bit o’ her or his Life-span. The nigget at the middle o’ all this is that how much o’ the Life-Span is forfeit is no’ to be known – ‘tis a mystery.
But, ‘the hook’ as Master Rolland would say, is that while the use o’ a Sorcerer’s craft’ll cost him, or her, no’ only do they no’ know how much each act tolls up, but the cost fer that very same act on one occasion’ll be different on the next.
An’ then, on top o’ all that, yer average Master Sorcerer’ll ha’ no idea as to how much spell-castin’ bucket-fulls he, or she, ‘ll be startin’ out wi’. So, it’s all a Mystery. Ye ha’ no idea how full yer bucket may be at the beginning an’ ye ha’ no idea how much ye must use to water the field or put out the fire on Moon’s Day, nor e’en if the amount required fer the exact same task’ll be the same on Mars’ Day o’ the same week.
So, then, at the end, ye ha’ a Sorcerer who ha’ – hopefully—led a good life, helpin’ those as are around him or her wi’ this an’ that life-problem an’ so on. But, as his last use comes to be, easin’ a pain or straightenin’ a bent blade or some such, he runs out o’ juice an’ gets done an’ what happens is, he’s gone – usually keelin’ o’er right in front o’ yer eyes. ‘Tis a sad fate, yet we mortals all ha’ more or less the same fate, some worse, in fact, an’ that sad fact ‘tis true.
But, the question remains -- what is it, exactly, as happens at such times? Well, the answer to that query be, accordin’ to the Learned is that the Three Fates ha’ made a decision an’ cut the thread, don’ ye know.
So, ye may be aksin’ yerselves, the Three Who? An’ in what follows ye’ll be learnin’ the answer to yer question. An’ since there is no kind o’ thing that be simple when dealin’ wi’ Humans, I’ll gi’ ye a complete read on the whole matter o’ this subject.
The Three Fates
The Three Fates (the Moirai) be three sister Goddesses, incarnations o’ Destiny an’ Life, it says here. Their names be Clotho, the one who spins the thread o’ life; Lachesis, the one who draws lots an’ determines how long one lives by measurin’ the length o’ the Thread o’ Life; an’ Atropos, the Inevitable. She’ the one it is who chooses how someone dies by cuttin’ the thread o’ life wi’ her shears in a certain way. I ha’ heard it said that they be ugly old women, stern an’ severe-like. But if ye says this opinion out loud an’ somethin’ dreadful then occurs to ye, ‘tis on yerself, I’d say. Also, I ha’ heard it said that some three days followin’ a child’s birth, the Moirai’ll come visit the house to determine the child's fate an’ life an’ all such.
But the confusion comes because other sets o’ Three be known. An’ so, how’s one to know which is which an’ who is who? So, ‘tis me duty to try an’ sort it all out, an’ here they be as follows below…
The Three Furies
Now in this scary set be the Three Furies (Erinyes), that is, three Maiden Deities described here as “chthonic deities o’ vengeance,” or, as I calls ‘em, ‘the Infernal Goddesses.’ An’ they be known as Alekto (Unceasing), Megaera (Grudging), and Tisiphone (Vengeful Destruction).
They be said to be beneath the earth, punishin’ whosoever it is ha’ sworn a false oath or other o’ a series o’ misdemeanors.
As to their origin, Brother Vaticanati ha’ said that one time back in the day, the Titan Kronus an’ his pop, Uranus, got into some sort o’ family dispute an’ the young lad castrated his father most cruelly an’ threw the remains all into the Sea. But as he was headin’ toward that body o’ water to make his, um, deposit, some drops o’ blood from his cargo fell upon the land. An’ so, it was the Erinyes as emerged from those drops of blood as fell on the Earth (Gaia). Now, this here Mule always was told that Gaia was a Titan-ess an' had to do wi’ ol’ Terra. But what then is her relationship to the Lady, if’n any? I ha’ no clue whatsoe’er, but I’d love to know if any o’ ye ha’ such information.
Anyway an’ in our last o’ The Threes we ha’…
The Gray Sisters
The Graeae (or the Phorcides) be daughters o’ the Sea-Gods Phorcys an’ Ceto an’ sisters to the Gorgons (who, by the way, were also three in number, but we’ll get to them another time. These folks do seem to go on an’ on aboot their ‘threes’, though I ha’ no idea as to why that might be). Anyway, The Graeae take the form o’ old grey-haired women though some say they be half-swan at certain times. Also, their age ‘tis said to be so great that a human childhood fer them is hardly conceivable. Hmm.
The Three Sisters was comprised o’ the well-clad Pemphredo (Alarm) an’ the saffron-robed Enyo (Horror or The Waster of Cities) an’ Deino (Dread, as in The Dreadful Anticipation o’ Horror).
They’re the ones as are said to be sharin’ but one eye an’ one tooth amongst themselves, which they takes turns passin’ around aboot an’ usin’. At times, though, I ha’ heard that one might arise in the country who has a powerful important question he, or she, needs to be knowin’ the answer to. So, they goes off to seek The Gray Sisters an’ if they’ll no gi’ ye an answer to yer riddle fer ye, ye kin always steal their eye or tooth an’ keep it from ‘em until they yields up ye yer satisfactory response.
So, now ye know as much aboot such things as this here old Mule. But I admits I be curious as to how a Sorcerer, or Sorceress, goes aboot their daily life knowin’ that any use o’ their craft might be the occasion when old Atropos snips their thread an’ that’s that – e’en if all they did was to spell themselves a rake from the barn wi’out ha’in’ to go fetch it themselves. Maybe that’s like it is, really, wi’ the rest o’ us. At least we ha’ that much in common wi’ such folk. Hmm.
But, there be a deeper question, o’ course, which is, what is it, now, that prompts the 3 Fates to be makin’ their decisions in the manner that they do an’ at the time they do? This one’ll need to be gi’en that one some more thought. But until that time…
The Great North Tower, Northfast