The Woman that Danced in the moonlight.
old and twisted wood. The screeches of baensidhe and lights of the marsh
wisps would move the night air, but none would come to visit, nor would
the pipers steal children. Rather, the children that were lost came
home again, with tales of smiling and benign guardians leading them away
from the easier paths, to find their loved ones again.
There was a woman in the village, who could work with grasses and herbs,
could make medicenes that cured ills and hurts, and whose advice
brought healthy children and kept some alive when all thought they would
die. She was golden haired and beautiful, and her village thought
themselves blessed to have her. There were tales that she spoke to the
creatures of the wild lands about the houses, and that she danced with
the Kings and Queens of the fey folk, whose interests in humans were
meant to be for evil, yet whose friendship brought mulberries into
fullness in the heaths, brought cows with creamy milk, and kept the
little darks away.
There were tales, of Walkers in the mist, and of black things that bound
mens' hearts with darkness. Power brings faith, and the weak will
follow a pitch darkness with the same fervour as the purest light. There
was a leader of these darks, these Walkers, and he walked in shadow so
deep that the air screeched in his passing.
One day, he came to the village, and the well-woman was not there. He
came with a great black cart, and he stood eight feet at the shoulder,
armoured in black, a great blade edged with ice, and a hundred followers
at his side. The people could do little, and lights gathered at the
edge of the twsited oaks, wailing in fear and at their inability to aid
the poor people. Dark swallows Light, and all know it.
As the last of children were being loaded, and the beheading of the
adults began, she returned, with wind in her wake, her beauty
mesmerising, yet a set to her that showed no smile. 'What do you do with
these children, Lord?' She asked, and her demeanour was of a servant.
'He smiled, if that is what it was, and said 'I see you, beauty, and you
deserve a truth. The truth is, these things around me were children
once, and now they are mine, to do with as I wish. They will die for my
whim, or kill for it equally well'.
She cried 'Oh, well show me this, for I have never seen such obedience in men, and I wish to see it before you take more!'
The creature gestured, and an armoured darkness stepped forwards,
reversing it's blackened blade, to kill itself, without a single sound
and a bow to it's Master. 'Oh!' She cried. 'More, more...I want more!
More and you shall have me at your side'. He gestured, and another died.
She danced for him, with abandon, and he showed her more, as she moved
ever closer. As she finished her dance, she was inches from him.
'I will show my Power, for yours is the greater, yet mine is a light to
savour and devour, which I will freely give you, as you have shown me
something of memory today!' The Walker bowed his head and his breath
'Come, little Darks! Dance with me, blow me kisses in the moonlight!'
She danced with each, and her light shone. Little by little, they grew
still, at the end of each dance, and their eyes were softened, just a
little piece of light in their terrible, stolen Dark. As she stopped,
the Walker reached his hand to her. 'A last dance, and you will be my
Queen, and together we will own the world!'
She danced to him, and her hand brushed his. She glowed like a star, but
her smile hardened. 'It is you who will be bound, my Great Dark! I am a
Light, but also a Dark, for a whole is not true without the two.'
The Walker shouted then, a sound that sent all to their knees but the
woman, who stood calmly. He gestured, but nothing happened. She smiled
ever the broader, and the hint of darkness in her flickered, but was not
strong, just defiant, and with intent on his pitch soul. 'You have
shown me your power, and it is nothing'. He gestured. 'No, Dark, you
have shown me that your peons will die for you. Fully half have died,
and they are yours no more'. He shouted, and it was the blast of grating
ice, cracking and grinding, a wave of power. 'You have let me show
mine, and half have been touched by peace. They will not follow you ay
more'. She spoke the truth. He was alone, and she glided towards him, as
his eyes glowed red. He raised his sword, and he struck at her.
The Woman laughed, as the blade stopped an inch from her face. 'You have
shown all fo the Dark, but my little you have not yet seen, for you
hungered for the death of my light, only that!' She faced him, and her
hands rose, flames rolling along them, blue fire, like the marsh Wisps
have, whipping and twirling. Her face was a snarl, as she burst into a
pillar of blue flame, and her voice crackled. 'Great Dark, Walker, I
bind you, for your name is known to me, and there are those who whisper
it with fear and with hate. You will fall, and your life will release
those you have bound, for you have forgotten that all have light AND
dark. Your little piece of Light is what gives me power upon you, not
your dark!' Her hands rippled, and the fire struck him even as his sword
rose a second time. A burst of Light rose, and tore free from tendrils
that sought to hold it, but it was drawn into the woman, and released,
to flow into his servants.
With a quailing scream, he vanished, and with tears of joys, those bound
came to life once more, freed from his winter grasp forever more.
A month after this, she vanished, as the mutterings grew of her own
devilry, of the hint of Dark she had shown, for any dark is fearsome,
and her protection was forgotten, as men began to fear her as much as
the Walker. She left, and her name left with her, for she had never told
it's Truest form. Her name was Witherwere, and she became a goddess at
the end of all her life, a beauty yet still, with both Light and Dark in