namesthesky: (a ~ one day soon)
Ayabel ◌ "Aya" ([personal profile] namesthesky) wrote2014-02-26 06:16 pm

authorized borrowing

Aya is little used to having the opportunity to set her own priorities, but she likes it. She's not hurting for any material resources, and the organization of the attic would produce those more than anything else; and she has this entire bookshelf closer to hand. So the attic, which may or may not contain ghosts, languishes; and she steadily works through the book collection. Right now she is on the third in a series of myths from the old religion; this volume is about Aelare, the trickster.
pythbox: A book. (Default)

[personal profile] pythbox 2014-02-27 03:00 am (UTC)(link)
Aelare has the most interesting stories.

She (or just as frequently he) appears in a bewildering variety of forms, although the commonest are the fox, the magpie, and the young man or woman with sparkling eyes. Most of the longer tales concern her venturing out into the world to make mischief or dispense gifts depending on whim and the behaviour of the recipient, but sometimes there is a shorter verse or tale about some (un)lucky soul who enters Aelare's domain and comes away embroidered with strange magical effects, with or without meeting the trickster responsible for the change.

Almost every time Aelare is introduced in any of these, it's with some new story about his or her origin. She was born in a sea-storm when the world was young, and flew around the world twice trying to build a nest to keep shiny stones in, and wherever she lingered she left magic in her wake, and that is why she takes the shape of a magpie in this story; in that one, he was the first person to walk into a magic, and it ate him up and made him part of itself, and that is why he takes the shape of a young man. And on and on. The most any two of these origins can agree on is that Aelare either came out of a magic or made them all.

Perhaps that abundance is why one of Aelare's many titles and epithets - alongside simpler things like "the copper-coated" (as a fox), "the yearning one" (mainly as a magpie), or "the gem-eyed" - is "the one who is born a thousand times".
pythbox: A book. (Default)

[personal profile] pythbox 2014-02-27 03:29 am (UTC)(link)
The stories can be very charming!

Probably through the influence of ancient storytellers' wishful thinking, Aelare is frequently depicted as developing a soft spot for some mortal - the reasons vary widely - and kindly bestowing a useful trick instead of instant death or inconvenient transformation. This girl gave the copper fox a kiss and was blessed with luck at gambling; that boy ran into a magic to escape his chores, and when he invented a series of increasingly improbable excuses to avoid revealing his dereliction to the woman whose eyes sparkled like opal, she liked his cleverness so much that she taught him how to braid moonbeams into cords like the ones she wore in her hair, after which his family was much more interested in getting rich off his new talent than in making him crack nuts and beat rugs.

Some of the gifts, often the most ambivalent ones, sound like things someone really might have walked out of a magic with and attributed to a trickster god; others, like the man who learned to drink sunlight he caught in a bowl and eat raindrops by the crunchy handful, seem invented for absurdity; some of the rest are tied to other legends, in which Aelare appears to some notable hero and helps or hinders them with some not-quite-traditional twist on the kind of aid or obstacle such heroes would usually encounter.
anotherbreeze: (① rewarding)

[personal profile] anotherbreeze 2014-02-27 02:59 pm (UTC)(link)
When the duke's son glances into her room and sees what she's reading, he giggles.
Edited 2014-02-27 15:26 (UTC)
anotherbreeze: (④ a magic)

[personal profile] anotherbreeze 2014-02-27 06:17 pm (UTC)(link)
"That one's my favourite," he says cheerfully.
anotherbreeze: (③ make it clear)

[personal profile] anotherbreeze 2014-02-27 07:38 pm (UTC)(link)
"But Aelare's the only god I feel like I'd get along with."
anotherbreeze: (④ a magic)

[personal profile] anotherbreeze 2014-02-27 07:47 pm (UTC)(link)
"Well, I guess that's why they're so unpopular these days."
anotherbreeze: (② i like to)

[personal profile] anotherbreeze 2014-02-27 07:49 pm (UTC)(link)
He laughs. "Yeah. I'm glad you like the book, anyway."
anotherbreeze: (④ a magic)

[personal profile] anotherbreeze 2014-02-27 07:55 pm (UTC)(link)
"Good luck," he snorts.
anotherbreeze: (③ make it clear)

[personal profile] anotherbreeze 2014-02-27 08:13 pm (UTC)(link)
"I've never heard any, but then, I barely ever go up there."
anotherbreeze: (⑥ unprepared)

[personal profile] anotherbreeze 2014-02-27 08:16 pm (UTC)(link)
"Maybe I have a haunted attic, then."

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