pretentious cosmic picture


Sashang, a few months after they had arrived on Tu, bore the baby Tjisir, and a storm out at sea proclaimed his coming. As much as she loved the baby, she would often bring him to Chialta, while she went her wayward way. Since Sagin was imprisoned, Angusin taught him much, and Tjisir grew swiftly, becoming a giant among the Kaanho. The elves loved the young Kaan, and made him gifts, like the thunderwhip and the lightning-axe. Moody in many ways, he never ceased to be grateful for the tutelege of Angusin and Linfal and Mayalaph. He loved the skies, and the clouds, and often stride it. He was rather jealous of Tuao's status as Sashang's new lover, and suspected that such was why Sashang did not spend more time with him, so he would often try to cover the sun with his clouds.

Linfal in turn, on her visits to Chialta, became pregnant, and soon bore Angusin the first of the star-warriors. They intermarried with the elves in the first generation, and soon climbed the sky at night. They shone of their own light, like their mother, Linfal, the moon, a cold light.

However, Linfal made the mistake of warning Sashang against Tuao, which Tuao resented. "Stop meddling in my affairs, Linfal, or you will find the entire sky too small for the two of us."

"I will advise as I think best for the interests of my sister."

"Then you will beware me!" and he struck her down and made as if he was going to harm or ravish her, when her children got between her and Tuao.

"Thanks to Linfal sharing in C'Don's judgement, we are less than full Kaan...but there are many of us."

Thus began the war of stars and sun, which comtinues to this day. Tuao reigns supreme during the day, while the star-warriors gather their strength. Then they start to rise, and Tuao retreats, not fearing any single foe, but fearing their massed might. The redness at the end of the day, both in the sky and the redness of the sun, is due to the wounds given him by the star warriors. Then the star-warriors line the night sky, in legion after legion, in different battle formations which we call constellations. Then Tuao, after resting and having his wounds healed, rises again, to face the star-warriors, and the pinkness of dawn is the blood of the star-warriors. Sometimes the dark cloak of Linfal falls on Tuao and blocks his light for a time, and men call it an eclipse.

Angusin almost stopped it, but Linfal objected. "Our children are like you in temperament. They adore a just cause. Give them a cause to fight for, and a battle never-ending. Tuao likes it also, and if the war ceased, sooner or later he would tire of the constant flying over and stay in one place. The zest of battle is good for both the star-warriors and the sun-dragon."

"Yet some of the star-warriors fall, and men call it a shooting star. There is bloodletting on both sides --"

"Which makes the dawn and the sunset."

"Is there no better way?"

"None that wisdom can discover."

Sashang had three children by Tuao...Lilung, first of the dragons, the first of the merpeople, and the first of the seaserpents. Due to C'Don's punishments, each succeeding one was less and less like a Kaan. These started to spread in the waters, with the merson taking an elfen wife and so the race of merpeople were born. Lilung mated with his own sister, the seaserpent, and their brood of children were four dragons and four seaserpents. Another generation passed, with intermarriages between dragons and seaserpents, and then the dragons stayed with their own kind, and mated with their own kind, as did the mindless seaserpents. In imitation of high Chialta, but in the watery depths, the dragons built the City-under-the-Sea, with the aid of their cousins the merpeople, whom they overawed with their size and power, so that the merpeople became a servant class to the dragons. Yet the dragons needed the cunning hands of their cousins. The merpeople, in turn, needed the dragon's fire to smelt metals, underwater.

While the first humans slept in the Greater World, life continued apace on Tu.

Next Chapter.

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Copyright © 1997 Al Schroeder