Tara West

YA paranormal/fantasy and New Adult author

Keepers of the Stones–The Beginning of Time

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Well, I’m about 67 thousand words into my current fantasy WIP, Curse of the Ice Dragon, and I have about another 10-15 thousand to go. I’m working feverishly every day to hopefully get the rest of my book finished within the next two weeks and then I can get back to my newest Whispers novel. Oh, and I never tire of looking at my Ice Dragon cover by artist Michelle Ulmer (Littlemeesh) from Deviantart. Here’s a link to her page on Deviantart where she has the entire ice dragon poster on display. Isn’t it beautiful?

I’ve got to get back to writing. In the meantime, please enjoy this origin myth I created for the inhabitants of my fantasy world, Tehra. This explains the origins of the evil goddess, Madea, in Curse of the Ice Dragon.  

The Beginning of Time

In the beginning there was chaos, with no division between the land, sea and sky. Only the Elements reigned: air, soil and water, colliding in discord, making Tehra a volatile, miserable planet. The Elements were unhappy with the constant state of unrest and change on Tehra. Since neither of them could exist together in harmony, they knew they needed something stronger and more powerful to rule over them, and bring peace to the planet.

The Elements called upon the vast magic of the universe and created the Tryads, immortal keepers of the Elements. Their names were Madea, keeper of sky and spirit; Kyan, keeper of land and breath; and Eris, keeper of water and life. But the Elements made one fatal mistake. They used magic, and only magic, to create the sisters. The Tryads were not of the Elements and so they had little regard for the safekeeping of the planet, save for one of the sisters, Kyan, who loved her land and the people who inhabited it.

The Elements had believed the Tryads would rule Tehra peacefully, keeping the distinction between air, land and water, and ending all chaos. The Elements, being simple in nature, had not planned for avarice and greed.

Eris, keeper of the fin folk, was unhappy with her station below the surface of the earth. She did not enjoy living among sea creatures and being tethered to an unsightly fish tail. She felt slighted by her air-breathing sisters who lived above her.

Madea bemoaned spending her days among the sky creatures, peering down at life below. Her earth sister lived with beings called humans who had built a shrine in her honor. But the bird folk gave Madea no such special treatment. Thus she wished for nothing else than to shed her wings and take her sister’s place as ruler of the human world.

Kyan, keeper of the land, felt no such resentment towards her sisters. She had fallen in love with Orhan, a handsome mortal. Together, they had conceived five daughters, each one the exact likeness of her mother and bearing magical powers. Kyan knew of her sisters’ envy, but did not fear them because, along with her daughters, she was more powerful than Madea and Eris combined.

But if Kyan had one weakness, it was her love for Orhan. Though he had wealth and power, he, being mortal, was still unhappy with his lot in life and desired sons. Kyan, as a daughter of Elemental magic, could only conceive a likeness of herself. In order to give him sons, she would have to use a different magic, a dark magic – one that came not from land, sky or water, but from the darkest recesses of the soul.

Kyan loved her husband and could not deny him his ardent wish, so she birthed him twin boys, Dafuar and Odu. But something changed within Kyan after she’d called upon the dark magic. Her soul had been compromised and her magic weakened. Along with it, her daughters’ magic had been tainted as well.

Madea was the first to seize upon her sister’s weakness, flying fast from the heavens and striking Kyan and her daughters with great thunderbolts, sending their souls into the great abyss and reducing their human forms to mere stones. Heartbroken and distraught, Orhan fled with his young sons to the shelter of the shifting sands.

When Eris learned of Madea’s treachery, she rose up from the waters, demanding her fair share of the land. Madea refused, and thus began a war between the two sisters. Madea pelted the waters with thunderbolts and hurled great gusts of wind. Eris retaliated with monstrous waves that swept away entire villages and eroded the soil.

All the while, the Elements mourned the loss of Kyan and the ongoing destruction of their planet. The world had become chaos once more – something that the Elements had sought to prevent by creating the Tryad. Now they had to act before Tehra was lost forever.

As each sister was consumed in destroying the other, the Elements manipulated wind and water, and pollinated their wombs. Eris and Madea each bore five daughters, the Elementals, who grew into adulthood before the first full moon. And though the Elementals had inherited their mothers’ magical powers, they were children of the Elements as well, and owed their loyalty to them, and thus to restoring peace and tranquility.

The Elementals forced their mothers to sign a truce. Eris was made keeper of the sea, as well as all of the islands and shorelines. Madea would rule the sky and the mountains. The land in between was given to Dafuar and Odu. But though Kyan’s sons were immortal like their mother, the dark magic used to conceive them had robbed them of their inherent magical powers. They feared they would not make good keepers.

The Elementals presented Dafuar and Odu with six sacred stones; each stone had once been the body of their mother and sisters, and they possessed great power. Through these stones, Dafuar and Odu could rule as keepers of the Elements. But soon it became evident that the sons had inherited their human father’s weaknesses, for though they lived forever as immortals, they aged as men. Their bodies became more weathered and decrepit with each passing year, and their memories began to fade.

The Elementals, fearing Eris and Madea would find a way to seize the powerful stones from Dafuar and Odu, stole them, hiding them in the darkest recesses of the earth. The Elementals then divided the remaining land between Madea and Eris. Dafuar and Odu left their homes and wandered the earth for ages, searching for something they’d lost, not remembering it was the stones they sought. They lived a cursed life, wise but unwise; immortal, but old and frail.

All the while, although Madea and Eris were tethered by The Elementals, their powers grew. Displeased with the shrines built to her by the mortals, Madea built one to herself; a giant palace of ice, rising up from the ground and reaching as far as the heavens. Eris, likewise, built a palace out of fire, which rose up from the ocean; a towering cylinder, shrouded by plumes of smoke and guarded by molten lava.

The two sisters had become so transfixed in building their shrines and strengthening their magic, that they had forsaken their duties as keepers of the Elements, paying little heed when ice storms and cyclones ravaged the earth and people. The Elementals, likewise, had no time to manage sky, land and water, as they were most often preoccupied with their mothers.

So, slowly, once again, the earth began to crumble. The ice melted, the wind howled and the land shook. The Tryad and the Elementals had failed to protect the Elements from chaos. Now, the people’s only hope of saving their planet lay in hiding, within the powers of the sacred stones.

 

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Author: tarawestauthor

A former Texas high school teacher, Tara enjoyed coaching her writing team and even the hectic deadlines that came with running the school publications. After taking a break to raise her baby girl, Tara now works from home as a cover artist. In her spare time, Tara loves to read, exercise and spend time with her family and friends. She contributes the cover art for her own novels and has designed covers for over 500 other books. She’d love for you to visit her at www.tarawest.com where you can check out her Whispers series and sample her artwork.

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