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Aerwyn
Cathair Utopian

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Aerwyn sat alone, on the edge of the river Corenas, watching the many fish splash, churning the water into foam in their mad rush upstream.

Aerwyn

She wondered if they had a purpose; and if so, what was it? Could she, the daughter of a renowned Harper, have a purpose? She hoped, at least, it did not involve swimming, as she was not the best of swimmers. Aerwyn's mind wandered aimlessly; the bright flashes of sun on the silver scales of the fish dancing across her vision. One fish stopped, seemingly to gasp for 'breath', his sucking lips opening and closing many times. He started again, but he was too slow, and was stuck in the current, the water beating him back, his defenses and strength failing. Aerwyn watched him, and stroked his glistening back with a finger. He was a wondefully colored fish, a rusty red and dull black, like armor that had sat in the rain for too long. Nestled amongst these colors were scales of gold. Aerwyn thought he looked like a knight, brave and strong, but dying, beaten by his foes. She lifted him suddenly out of the water and ran, carrying him further upstream, the fish's lips sucking, his tail slapping feebly against her. She reached a calm spot in the water, and dropped him in. The fish swam in a full circle, as if unsure that he was truly safe, and then gave a little fishy leap of joy. Aerwyn laughed aloud, the stormy, brooding look gone from her eyes for a moment. After the fish had gathered his strength, he looked up above the surface of the water, and started swimming once again toward his goal, whatever and wherever it was.
--When I am stranded in the current--Aerwyn thought to herself--who will fish me out?--

Aerwyn

Aerwyn stood again, brushing herself off. She turned about, and shuffled toward her Keep, Crinos. Along the way she sang a song she had made up, about her fish:


Brave sparkling warrior,
Mighty, and strong,
Admirers crowd you,
In a delighted throng.


But battle will claim you,
You must go to fight,
So you mount your steed,
And ride off in the night.


What shimmering maiden cries for you?
Your ears are deaf to all sound,
'Cept the thundering of oncoming hooves,
Echoing against the stark ground.


The clashing of swords are heard from afar,
One strikes home, and you cry out,
Your foe, your slayer, disappears like the stars,
Leaving you to deal with your bout--
Of pain.


Lying in a blood filled river,
Many pass and turn their heads,
Their goals are more important than a lone stranger,
And you might as well be dead.


But your shimmering maiden comes once more,
In a dream, or a hallucination,
She lifts you from your nightmares,
And promises you'll never venture back again.


--Needs work--she thought--but I think Father will like it--








Aerwyn neared the door of Crinos Keep; she stepped across the threshhold. Her father was sitting in the midst of many onlookers, dazzled by his deep voice and fancy fingers, flitting across his gitar. He was nearing the end of an old song that he had sung to Aerwyn as a young girl, and the last words were:


When the sunlight touches the shadowed lands,
And the dragon wingbeats are stilled,
We will work and live by the skill of our hands,
And our hearts will be thawed, when once chilled.


But to those who would wish the great gods of the sky,
To fall in ruins and dust,
Their evil hearts will shrivel and die,
As all things evil sometime must.


But sweetling, cry not, I will always be here,
For because of your birth I am blessed,
You young innocents should have nothing to fear,
So now close your eyes, and take rest.


Wild applause greeted this last line, and Aerwyn's father, Aedoan, stood and bowed several times. Afterward, the young ones of the Hold where put to bed, and the adults made merry, danced, and Aedoan came once again to the stage. But this time, he did not sing. Instead, he spoke loudly, calling for the dancers to quiet themselves.
"Fellow people of Danach," he said,"it is my great pleasure to present to you my young apprentice, and daughter, Aerwyn, to sing for your Gather of the Golden Wings!"
The audience applauded, and Aerwyn, speechless and nervous, legs shaking, took the stage. Her father handed her a flute, and he took his gitar, beckoning Aerwyn's mother, Lerwyn, to join them. Lerwyn smiled bashfully, and took her harp. She embraced her daughter, and kissed her cheek.
"You'll do well," she whispered,"just sing your best."
Aerwyn nodded and swallowed a few times.
She thought back to the lazy day she had spent by the river, and recalled her fish song. She started by explaining:
"This first song, ladies and gentlemen, comes from my imagination, and a fish. I was sitting by the Corenas river this afternoon, where the fish are migrating upstream, and I came upon a beautifully colored fish, caught in the current.."
She finished her explanation and began the song. Her mother and father soon got the gist of the melody and harmony, and they backed her up with harp and gitar. In the middle and end of the song, Aerwyn did a bit of a dance and played vigorously on her flute. In a matter of time she had the audience clapping to the rhythm, laughing and dancing. After the song she danced some more, jewelry jingling, red hair whipping around her face. She ended with an elaborate set of leaps, finished with a roll. She landed on her hands and knees and bowed her head. The audience loved it. They called and smiled, guffawed and chuckled. Some people climbed up on stage and started dancing themselves. Aerwyn was lifted up by her father, and Lerwyn stood smiling by his side.
"The wonderful Lady Aerwyn!"











Although the Gather lasted long into the morning, Aerwyn was in her bed soon after her performance. She hummed herself to sleep, and as her eyes closed, she recalled the Sleep Song her father had sung to her..


But sweetling, cry not, I will always be here,
Because of your birth I am blessed,
You young innocents should have nothing to fear,
So now, close your eyes, and take rest.

Aerwyn

Aerwyn awakened to a knock at her door.
"Come in!" she yelled, and jumped out of bed.
The door opened, and a young woman walked in.
"Hello, Aerwyn. My name is Rubiae."
"Oh. Good morning, Rubiae. May I ask what you are doing here?"
Rubiae smiled.
"Well, Aerwyn, I wanted to congratulate you on your astounding performance last night. You did quite well!"
"Thank you, very much I'm sure." Aerwyn replied, smiling.
"But that's not what I've woken you up early in the morning for. I'm sure you know what a dragon is--"
Aerwyn's heart lept--dragon? Of course!
"--and I know that you understand that there is a clutch at Vella Crean, and that they must have candidates. My dragon, green Maoith, has decided, after hearing you sing, that you are Sands-worthy!"
Aerwyn caught her breath, and put a hand to her mouth. She stepped back, wonder and excitement, and disbelief, registering in her eyes.
"M-me?" she managed to squeak.
--Now--she thought to herself--that's hardly a proper voice for a Harper!--
"Me?" she asked again.
"Well, yes,"said Rubiae, in a puzzled voice, "but after your reaction, are you sure you want to?"
Aerwyn shook her head, but then quickly corrected herself with a brisk nod.
"Why..why, yes! Of course!" Aerwyn stammered.
"Then get yourself packed and say good-bye to your parents."
Aerwyn nodded, and flew to her sack. She threw all her clothing and a few bottles of this and that inside, as well as boots, sandals, paper and writing tools, and a few other knicknacks inside. She skipped down the stairs and shouted to her parents--
"I've been Found!"
Aedoan and Lerwyn hugged her tightly, and they both kissed her cheeks.
"Farewell, darling," said Lerwyn.
"Keep singing!" advised Aedoan.
Then Aedoan fished inside his pack that lay on the floor, and withdrew a small painted carving of a flit.
"To remind you of us," he added,"And don't forget your old parents, now, sweetie."
"I won't!" she cried, and kissed them again. Then she was out the door, and Rubiae was helping her mount the green Maoith. The trio launched into the sky, and they vanished parallel.

Aerwyn

Another egg had hatched, revealing another white. The white had been busy, letting out little melodious croons. At the sound, Aerwyn started to whisper a soft song she created. At the sound, the white tilted her head.
~That was wonderful, my rider. Come, will you sing songs about me? Mulgoith?~
Aerwyn smiled.
"Of course I will," she whispered, happy tears of rapture running down her face.

Mulgoith

Mulgoith, juvenile stage

Vella Crean--http://www.geocities.com/vellacrean/