The Song of Ceber
Argument: Takara tells the story of the clever blowfly, who when confronted with the monsters Terite's sexual indecencies have produced, comes up with a clever plan to defeat them.
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Takara no stranger to tale, began her spell:
The Tale of Blowfly and the Three Monsters
“The wasps, it is said, are descended from the Giant Thought and the Goddess Elsalay. The monsters of the world, however, come from Terite. He was a lustful deity who thought his true wife Takara a bore. He could never satisfy her and so was never satisfied himself. His lust drove him to travel the world looking for partners. His affairs with many titans spawned terrible beings that the world sometimes still has trouble with. If only he were male enough to tame Takara the world would have less problems. Adultery breeds sinners as the wise worms say. His affairs with the Giant Sky gave us the poisonous slow lizards and the giant serpent Azkaror-zăd was begot from the lizard titan Hope. The Delves are also his offspring as is the Earth Monster Karo. Wyverns spring from his loins like parasites, as do all the lesser dragons. Seeing his mischief, he attempted to hide his adulterous discharges by hiding the beasts on the Moon. But the moon was too small for them all, and soon they poured off of it, many striking the ground and dying, but others living and writhing around and causing terrible mischief.
Of all the monsters there were three that were the worst.
The Delves were wicked beings with lightless fire for hair and the faces of wolves and jumping legs like locusts. They would come into a hive and slay all to get the larvae.
The next most vexing was the Moon Beast, a shape-changing monster in the form of a giant bear. He prowled the river countries keeping the people away from all the great streams until they were parched with thirst.
Finally, there was Arktow the World Spider. Brother to black Akenzee, he kept to the shadows and stealthily stalked his victims, claiming them only when they were alone and their backs were turned.
The predations of these beasts were too much to bear and a great council was called to decide what was to be done.
“We can’t go on letting demons frighten our people, take our children, and kill our warriors,” the eldest wasp said. “If we don’t fight back eventually we will have nothing left.”
“But who can stand against these demons?” the crowd asked. They quaked with fear at the thought.
“Pick the strongest!” said one of the elders
“Pick the swiftest!” said another.
“Pick the smartest!” said a third.
“No, send all three!” said the fourth.
However, none could agree and even deplorable compromises could not be reached as the council was divided and the arguments grew fiercer and fiercer until the predations of the officials were worse than the monsters they faced. It wasn’t long until the wasps grew tired of the council’s inefficiency and had dissension and nullification on their lips.
When Blowfly went flying out, he heard the complaints of the wasps. From all of Ayeguay the complaints stirred, until finally Blowfly stopped to ask a few gall wasps he found lounging what the trouble was.
“Oh,” they said. “There are three terrible monsters that ravish the land and our council, the supposed wisest of our people waste time all day talking about what is to be done with these beasts.”
“Well, that has nothing to do with me,” Blowfly said.
“Please,” said the gall wasps. “If the monsters continue they will strip the world bare. There will be no balance and soon you will have nothing to eat!”
“There will always be something to eat,” Blowfly said, “but maybe you’re right. I will see what I can do.”
Thinking hard, he came up with a plan. He went down to the river and waited. Sure enough the Moon Beast soon came along in the guise of an old wasp. But Blowfly laughed.
“Wasps have six legs, old fly!”
And the beast departed only to return as a beautiful shield maiden.
Again Blowfly laughed, “You can’t fool me, girl. Women wasps have stingers.”
So the beast left only to return as a demon of the underworld.
Blowfly laughed so hard he nearly split his head open, “Nice try! I see through your disguise.”
The Moon Beast assumed its true form that of an enormous gray bear as tall as an oak tree.
“It doesn’t matter what form I appear in for I shall kill you,” it spoke.
“Wait!” said Blowfly. “I’m not here to fight. I came to see if the stories were true.”
“What story?” the Beast asked, vanity being a weakness in many of the lesser spirits.
“That you are the strongest monster in the land,” Blowfly said, “that you can beat any other monster in a fair fight.”
“That’s the truth. I am stronger than any of the land monsters. None have sharper claws or stronger teeth.”
“But you know,” said Blowfly, “now that I see you, I think the Delves of the south could beat you.”
“The Delves are but petty monsters turned out of heaven because of their foul smell. They are not fierce and I shall prove it to you!”
The Moon Beast went to the Delves, who lived on the top of Mount Cran, which back then breathed fire into the sky. The Delves would relight their hair at its peak after plundering the country-side. The Beast found them in a rude camp at the base of the mountain.
“Your murders end tonight!” the Beast said charging in.
They raked him with their claws, but they could not hurt the beast. Each swipe slid off the shaggy fur. The Beast caught them one by one and broke their backs.
“Now do you believe me?” the Beast asked Blowfly.
“You did kill the Delves, but surely not even you could challenge the world spider Arktow.”
“Bah!” the monster said. “Arktow is but a puppy. I’ll show you that he can be beat.”
They traveled the world in search for the spider. Finally, one day, they noticed they were being followed by the earth spider. Arktow was a rabid wolf spider, but one grown so old that his size had ballooned to mammoth proportions. Yet his dark brown pelt melted him into shadows. Only daring to creep when his prey was not looking, he decreased his distance even as his target’s fear increased. But the Beast was not scared. He whirled catching the spider fully exposed.
“Ha! I see you now. No sense in hiding.”
The spider unfurled its bulk until completely spread. As large as a hay bale. The spider had a plan. With his back legs Arktow spun a net, it would catch the Beast and bind it fast.
But it was not so! The Beast broke the net such was his strength. It tied the spider up with the broken net.
“Now you surely must believe that I am the strongest monster on this earth!”
“You did beat the Delves and the world spider, but isn’t the Earth Monster Karo stronger than both?”
“What? The Earth Monster? I’ll beat him ragged. There will be nothing left!”
So, they went and found the Earth Monster sleeping like a mountain of dirt on the south continent.
The Moon Beast climbed up to the Earth Monster’s face and challenged it to a duel. The Monster yawned and went back to sleep.
This infuriated the beast. Like many people assured of their own strength, the Moon Beast was quite stupid. He took his claws and sunk them into the Earth Monster’s moist button nose.
The Earth Monster sneezed and how did the Moon Beast fly! All the way up to the sky and through it and past the Moon where it became the evening star.
Blowfly alighted on the Earth Monster and rubbing his back legs to clean them, smiled before beginning his dinner from the Earth Monster’s hide.
Hércyme the árcræftiges blawfléogan ende bíspelles.
Authorial note: The above is adapted from several Native American myths (particularly Navajo myths, See Coyote and the Earth Monster) cobbled together. The blowfly is a stand in for Coyote. These sort of myths have always fascinated me, especially how they often incorporate explanations of the natural world, such as the creation of a planet presented here.
The Song of Ceber
Song of Ceber 0: Explanatory Notes ¦ 1 ¦ 2 ¦ 3 ¦ 4 ¦ 5 ¦ 6 ¦ 7 ¦ 8 ¦ 9 ¦ 10 ¦ 11 ¦ 12 ¦ 13 ¦ 14 ¦ 15 ¦ 16 ¦ 17 ¦ 18 ¦ 19 ¦ 20 ¦ 21 ¦ 22 ¦ 23 ¦ 24 ¦ 25 ¦ 26 ¦ 27 ¦ 28 ¦ 29 ¦ 30 ¦ 31 ¦ 32 ¦ 33 ¦ 34 ¦ 35 ¦ 36
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