“Nehvi na’reaim yaeklas…”
Caught in a flurry of snow, Serenwilde’s festivities drew to an end as a new year and moon both turned. Alongside Nehvi, a carefree elfen lady recently returned to the commune, the shelterfolk gathered to observe Fair Galaphyrae conduct a wintry Sower rite and listen to poetry recited by Spirit-Touched Keyne, drawing the celebration of guild and kinship to a close.
Revelling in the ensuing high spirits and prickled nerves, Nehvi soon announced that the time felt right. She called upon Regent Tyrus Myeras to make good on an offer he’d made to her many moons prior – the offer to visit the Serenas’im Alemnacree in person and hear what words were waiting there.
Along with the gathered Seren, they journeyed to a glade that is both part of the Serenwilde, yet also beyond, a place where secrets gather and the Goddess Elfenehoala’s memory speaks. The Serenwilde basked in the fragrant mysteries of the place as though near and dear friends with them, and they encouraged Nehvi to step forth and touch the moss-covered stone raised before the crescent-shaped pond. As this was the conclusion to a gathering of kin and kith, and as the stone itself radiated no small amount of intense emotion, she agreed to do so if another joined with her in laying hands upon it. Keyne volunteered, and together, they placed their palms upon its pale surface.
And then Her voice sang through the clearing – the Elder Goddess Elfenehoala spoke to all gathered with words left there long ago. Her voice quickly overwhelmed the elfen, staggering her and, by Her conclusion, dropping her to her knees. Overcome, she wept; overwhelmed, she gathered the mists about her, veiling her deeper and deeper within their shadows until she disappeared with one last bitter, tear-stained regret:
“…You should have told Me…”
At a loss for what they had just witnessed and what now to do, the Seren conferred. Norra Lunarose of Moon Lake understood intuitively what had occurred and why the elfen disappeared, offering, “The message finally reached Her.” As Saran Strongleaf called out to his Goddess and others mused about whether it was altogether safe to remain, the impenetrable mists thinned. An animal trail appeared, leading deeper into a labyrinthine maze of trees and fog and spirits stalking the livings’ every move.
At the edge of hearing, growing louder the further they travelled, the shelterfolk heard a chant repeated over, and over, and over. “Nehvi na’reaim yaeklas… nehvi na’reaim yaeklas…”
With Galaphyrae leading the way, they followed the voices into a moonlit tangle from which there seemed no sure way out. And there they found the source of the chanting in three fae linked together in coven: a maiden, mother, and a crone. When Huskii Myeras of the Misty Vale broke their trance by uttering the first word of their incantation aloud – “Nehvi!” – their chanting quieted, but they didn’t chastise the gathering. They didn’t speak at all, but lowered their hands and widened their circle, welcoming the Seren into the ritual with neither explanation nor instruction – only their need. Only a phrase.
“Nehvi na’reaim yaeklas…”
Galaphyrae and Saran stepped forward, as did Keyne and Norra who both first joined with the chanting. Others followed more hesitantly, some with uncertainty, some with a small protestation, and some with fear, for this place was strange, and powerful magicks hung thick with the mists in the air. The fae resumed their chanting as the Serenwilde slowly fell into rhythm and purpose: Galaphyrae, Saran, Keyne, Norra, Huskii, Tyrus, Miau, Xiran. And still others found their way through the twist of mist and trees to join the circle and its goal: Llani, Erebos, Velcora.
“Nehvi na’reaim yaeklas…”
The ritual built to a crescendo of joined purpose and unity as moonfire flickered to life before everyone, at first haltingly, then growing and growing. And as it peaked in strength, the wintry air itself held its breath.
The words called to Lisaera, the Silver Goddess Who stepped forth from the mists in the middle of the circle. Were there any doubts before, the Elder Goddess shared many similarities with the elfen lady who had so enjoyed the Serenwilde’s festival, but unmasked – and somehow changed. After whispering words to Her fae in secrecy, they left, and Lisaera turned Her attention fully onto the mortals whose voices drew Her from the embrace of the realm. She had but one question: “What will you now do, children of Seralem, now that your festival has come to a close?”
The Serenwilde spoke of living, of learning, of listening, sowing, protecting, and growing. Miau spoke of meeting with Bandrui, then picking flowers – of community. Keyne echoed the words of his earlier poem, promising to walk in courage, love, and honour as the family the commune has grown to be. There were fervent words, and there were words filled with laughter. The Silver Goddess weighed all as though bearing witness to sworn oaths.
She then turned to Xiran Stormcrow, Serenwilde’s Minister of Cultural Affairs, and She asked the same of she who organized the activities and made room for so many disparate yet united souls. The faeling insisted her work was the work of everyone. And indeed it was – it was the work of a people united.
Soon Maylea, Bloom of Serenity stepped into the gathering, Her joy infectious as She greeted and welcomed Lisaera’s return. Together, They talked, and then They retreated into prismatic and silver light as Lisaera promised the gathering that She would meet them again.
Lisaera walks the First World once more, but what had drawn Her away for so long? And what happened to Her in the mists of Seralem? What meaning did the words the Seren chanted hold, and what will the Silver Goddess now do? She cloaks Herself in mystery upon ethereal mystery – this much of Her remains unchanged.