Jack of Many Trades

The Rivers and the Seas

Originally posted: 2015-04-11

I will tell you, first of all, that Wiljon was by no means careless. All three brothers were known for their cleverness, but Wiljon in particular was a master of intellectual pursuits, and he beat his brothers at chaturanga and other strategy games three quarters of the time. The trouble with strategy is that it is that no amount of planning can completely account for chaos. But Wiljon did his best, building a snug fortress for his daughters, counselling peace whenever possible, and always seeking the best path.

One day the seas were troubled. Unlike a normal storm, all of the winds were blowing and all of the waters were stirred at once, across all of the lands the brothers knew. When the waters did not calm even after nine days, they met to discuss what should be done.

"It may be our parents," Wiljon said. "We should proceed with caution."

"It may be our parents," Wodanaz said. "We should use this knowledge against them for gain."

"It may be our parents," Wehaz said. "We should fuck with them." At the behest of Wodanaz but against his own better judgement, Wiljon left his daughers Danec and Varanec and went forth from his home to seek answers. None of the sea waters would calm for him, and they could only shout and moan when he asked why they thrashed so. Finally he went to the first water, the well at the center of the world. It was so deep that it was said to have no bottom, but instead that those who dove in and didn't return were instead surfacing in the otherwhere.

The earthgods who guarded the well were hesitant to help him, but when he explained the state of the waters elsewhere, they decided it would be best to help before such a plague could spread to their waters.

"We will help," they told him, "but you will owe us a boon."

Grateful for their aid, he agreed. They allowed Wiljon to pass, and he plunged his head into the waters. There he saw a vision of his mother, the Lady of Water, calling down storms. He was able to see that she was living on a coast to the south, where the waters were warm and never froze.

"They have as much as declared war on us again!" Wehaz smiled when Wiljon returned. "Wodanaz can justify going to war for sure."

"Don't be too ambitious," Wiljon answered, but he was called into war counsel anyway.

The seas continued to churn, and the rivers overflowed their banks, and Wiljon watched his daughters fight madness, for Varanec was tied to the saltwaters and Danec to the freshwaters. Determined to see the end of it for their sake, Wiljon left his snug home again, this time for the home of his mother, Kaana of Mu. He planned to broker peace with her and take home a deal Wodanaz could not refuse. Distrustful of his mother, he laid enough charms and curses on himself that anyone sane would be dissuaded from causing him harm. He felt his plan was quite safe.

Kaana greeted him warmly, had a feast prepared for him, and then tore his head from his body in revenge for her brother Tzymir. She had no regard for the curses Wiljon had laid, though the first of them rebounded on her immediately, dampening her power and driving her from the waters.

With Kaana cut away and Wiljon dead, Danec and Varanec were forced to either gather themselves and take control or give the waters entirely over to the Leviathan, the original spirit of the waters. With prompting from Wodanaz and Wehaz, as well as to honor their father, they stepped forward. Danec is the fresh water, largely friendly and helpful, often peaceful. She called the floodwaters back within their banks. Varanec is the sea water, capricious, sometimes still full of rage and pain at her father's death, but still dedicated to the world she was born to. She calmed the waters and blessed the sailors, though there are still times when her anger gets the better of her and the waters rise again.