Monday, 30 May 2016
Ys is gone. Time passes. Seasons turn. Ysans adjust - in different ways. Gratillonius reorganizes and rebuilds. His enemies plot. Rufinus spies. Corentinus evangelizes. The Empire recedes. Barbarians return. Nemeta lives by witchcraft. Midsummer rites become the feast of St John. Drusus, retired soldier, farmer and Christian, employs Tera, former Ysan inlander, because she is a good worker who knows the landwights. Inlanders had called on the local Gods, not on the Three.
is reputed to be the daughter of a God but is really the daughter of an unknown human father;
knew a few spells but no longer uses them;
sees signs in wind, water or stars;
has seen Cernunnos three times;
moves in with Maeloch, the fisher captain, in Confluentes;
delivers Gratillonius' grandson;
accepts that her children will go to Christ;
says, "'They're ghosts of what They were, the Gods are.'"
-Poul and Karen Anderson, The Dog And The Wolf, Chapter VIII, section 5, p. 169.
Ghosts of Gods! The awesome reduced to the eerie. Neil Gaiman, who is surely an authority on such matters, describes five phases in the life-cycle of a God:
back to the Dreaming;
the realm of Dream's older sister, Death;
Tera's Gods have entered the third stage or maybe the fourth. Maeloch no longer serves the Three but will not forsake the spirits in the sea. He will remember Dahilis and kindle a torch on Hunter's Moon eve. Corentinus' duty:
"...was to purge the observances of their openly pagan elements." (Chapter IX, section 3, p. 182)
I can only decry this. If there is to be monotheism, then I would prefer that it be an inclusive one on the Hindu model.