Lillandra

First impressions count and Lillandra’s first impression was a doozy.  “From love gone wrong, Sorrow shall enter the world,” she proclaimed at the Congress of the Gods.  The Firstborn never forgot and made sure that the Secondborn, third born, fourth born and all the borns after that understood.

Only Lillandra could have made such a proclamation.  Her gift to the Elder Races, the ability to go forth and multiply, gave her the right.  Without her gift, none of those other borns would have been around to enjoy the Full Radiance.  The Firstborn would have also been the Lastborn.

No one held it against her, they didn’t find people of other races attractive*, at least not in that way, but even if they had, they would have obeyed Lillandra’s Ban.  The Lady of the Hearth presented a case that was hard to refuse.  After her heavy lifting, (for that, check out her brother Aerdran’s entry), Lillandra was content to while away the days in the shade of Wentavayya, her Sildar tree in the Singing Forest, and dream of babies, lots of babies – Pangral, Elves, Dwarves, Ravir you name it, the more babies the better.  She was a goddess of fertility, birth and creation and thought about babies all the time.  She made up the rules for having babies based on what she’d seen in the Prophecies – no mingling between the races, no familial incest and pretty much everything else was fair game.  Since fornication passed for prayers to the Earth Mother, the less regulation the better, but the funny thing is, she didn’t pay much attention to the rules when it came to herself, unless there was fine print allowing anyone to marry their grandchild.

That’s what Lillandra did when she gave her heart to Vitale.  Way back, before the Elder Races, Lillandra had brought forth the Ealar Shamran, making her the plant god’s mother, in an admittedly unconventional sort of way.  An age or two later, Shamran hooked up with Spollnar as part of the Vanara conspiracy, and Vitale was the result.  So you see, Vitale was Lillandra’s grandson.  It wasn’t something people dwelled upon; it wasn’t even well known.  The surviving myths didn’t go there, a tradition I honored.  When you read the Vanara story, that barely mentioned, unnamed god laying with Spollnar was Shamran.  The dots are there, they’re just not easy to connect.  I’m not sure which god was responsible for the cover-up.  It might have been Lillandra, to protect Vitale’s reputation (and hers, though I’m sure that wasn’t the point), but that wasn’t her style.  It could have been the Seeress, acting on a premonition, or the Lady, following the Balance’s command.  Or maybe, it was a conspiracy and they all had a hand in it?

Lillandra’s popularity was enduring too.  The healer Sidara, who helped Hali cleanse the Orc shaman’s shadow, was her priestess.  Centuries later, in Renk, Knights of the Spring rode under her banner by the thousands against Bayor.  By then she’d been updated to Lillandra 2.0, the result of a long running PR campaign and taking Vitale as her consort.  Having the Vanara war god as a permanent fixture on her left arm made a world of difference.  She’d needed to remake in her image.  With the Elder Races, she was Lillandra of the Hearth, who had uttered uttered the most famous words of the Elder Days, but for Mankind, her Ban meant nothing.

For one thing, the Ban was unofficially revoked after the BUN.  What was the point?  Sorrow had already entered the world.  Lillandra didn’t make a speech and no announcements were made, but no one made a fuss about mingling any more.  It didn’t really change anything.  Old habits die hard and Lillandra’s Ban was so ingrained that pretty much everyone still followed it.  After the Reckoning, things loosened up a bit.  Most of Mankind didn’t know about the Ban.  Those who did just chalked it up as another crazy Elder Day thing.  Every once in a while, you’d hear about a man or woman falling for an Elf.  It was rare but not unheard of.

Also, the world after the Reckoning was a world without earthsong, and next to babies, Lillandra loved earthsong most.  She and Aerdran had learned its secrets from Spirit and if Deridean hadn’t already given the honor to Aerdran, she’d have gladly given earthsong and fertility to the Elder Races.  Between losing earthsong and the Ban’s downgraded relevancy, Lillandra needed a fresh face for Mankind.  Hence, the makeover.

 

* Two notable exceptions, one of which was nipped in the bud before it became a problem.  Unfortunately it only took one slip up for Erlik to gain his foothold.

1 – Sunome of the Dolforro and Embyrl, an Elven princess.  The Lady of Esel caught wind of their feelings before the would-be lovers could act upon them.  She stripped Embyrl’s sorcery and bestowed a curse right out of Ladyhawke on the pair.

2 – The Traitor and Caeryn the Mist Elf.  The Traitor knew that it was wrong to love an Elf, but he didn’t care.  He was weak and easily seduced and his selfishness brought Sorrow to the world, just as Lillandra had warned.

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