Help Index :: Religion :: The Twins

Tarafas, the Dawn Star, and Tarayla, the Evening Star, were once worshipped
as a pair. The Twins were inseperable; they did everything together, and
never was there such a bond between two people as the one between Tarafas and
Tarayla. They were virtually identical in appearance, mannerisms and even
their voices, save only the color of their hair: that of Tarafas had a slight
golden tinge, while Tarayla's bore the touch of silver. This, of course, was
easily mutable to two beings so magically natured as they, and the Twins
enjoyed pulling pranks on other people, trading identities as easily as they
might a dress. Together, they created the Llewyrr, the Children of the Light,
and with the assistance of the Child-Goddess, their sister Anor, blessed the
elven nation with great beauty and equally great capacity for love. Also,
they instilled in their children the magics the Twins shared, and indeed, each
elf was gifted with this strong affinity for magic. This time was known as
the Age of Magic, or the Age of the Twins. During these days, magic was much
more common than it is today. Virtually every living being bore some talent
for the arcane, and peace and prosperity ruled the land.

Such harmonious times could not, however, last forever. The indestructible
bond between Tarafas and Tarayla quickly drew the attention of the Corruptor,
Temohpab, who saw this as the ultimate test of his powers of destruction. He
vowed to shatter strong affection between the Twins, and coerce one or both of
them to join his terrible evil. Utilizing stealth granted him by Ulthi (who
in his madness was more than happy to grant Temohpab the power to bring chaos
to the union of the Twins), Temohpab seduced both of the sisters, allowing
neither to know that the other also had his attentions. The sisters, thrilled
that each of them shared even the experience of finding a love, were certain
that life could not get better for either of them. Little did they know just
how wrong they were.

Temohpab decided that the time had come to see just how thoroughly he could
destroy the Twins. Using his magics to tint Tarafas' golden tresses with a
silvery hue, unbeknowst to her, he allowed Tarayla to come across him with her
sister. Tarayla, shocked and confused, ran in horror from the scene of her
lover with her sister. The first seeds of doubt and hatred had been planted
in her heart, something she had never before experienced in the sheltered,
blissful life of naivete the Twins had always led. Tarayla felt pulled
irresistibly back to the place where Tarafas and Temohpab were, unwilling, yet
unable to resist the siren call of Temohpab's beckoning.

It was then that she noticed her sister's silver hair. Sudden anger flared
within her, searing her innocent soul with burning rage. Tarayla watched,
horrified, until Tarafas left, and then ran to Temohpab, pleading to know why
he had betrayed her with her sister. Temohpab, inwardly cackling with glee
that his horrid plot was coming to a head, swore to Tarayla that he had been
tricked by Tarafas, who had been masquerading as her sister. Blinded by her
love of Temohpab, Tarayla accosted her sister, demanding to know why Tarafas
could be so cruel. Tarafas, rightly denying any knowledge of what was going
on, pleaded with her sister to stop, to believe in her.

Not truely reassured by Tarafas' pleas, yet unwilling to press things any
farther with the sister she so dearly loved, Tarayla backed down for the time
being. An uneasy truce existed between the Twins for a while, though both had
cause to doubt the bond between them. When it became apparent that Tarafas
was with child, however, the final tenuous thread between the Twins snapped.
The inevitable occurred. Tarayla, unable to stand the thought of her sister
bearing her lover's child, broke down in a fit of agony and rage. Propelled
by the sinuous whispers in her mind, she went in a fury to Tarafas, and
attacked her. Tarafas, too, was touched with anger, not only that her sister
would ever seek to harm her, but also because she, too, felt that she had been
betrayed in the matter of Temohpab's love.

The Twins fought each other with all they had, each seeking to destroy the
other in the madness of their rage. Storms of wild, chaotic magic flooded the
land, ripping it asunder as the battle of the Twins raged on. At last, the
very land could suffer no more, and Meriada, who held all things arcane in his
hands, forced the Twins to cease their terrible fighting. Though Meriada
restored the balance of the land as best he could, doing so pulled much of the
magical essence from the world, turning creatures and beings once very
mystical in nature were now suddenly rendered mundane, and were forced to
learn life without magic. Many fragile creatures died, and many more were
forced into hiding to keep what little magical power they did have hidden from
the rest of the world.

Both Twins were near death from their injuries and from sheer exhaustion.
Their mother, Taranth did all she could to heal them, but knew that the most
important part of what had made up the Twins -- the mystical bond between them
-- could never be healed. As a reminder of the horrible damage that had been
done that day, Taranth left each of the sisters with one scar on their
previously perfect faces: Tarafas' on the right cheek, and Tarayla's on the
left. Tarafas was horrified at what had been done. The thought that she had
been a part of the breaking of the world, not to mention the fact that she had
very nearly killed the twin she adored, left her in shock and agony. She fled
the scene of their epic battle, weeping for all that once was, and never would
be again. To her, the scar she now bore was an open wound, weeping for the
loss of her sister and her world.

Tarayla, too, left what remained of the land which once the Twins had
created in tears. Hers, however, were from the pain of not being able to
finish what she had started, and that her sister, once her best friend and now
her greatest hate, still drew breath. Tarayla, now to be known as Shantara,
meaning Vengeance, wore the scar her mother had left to her as a twisted badge
of honor, yet one that will fester until she is able to complete her task of
killing her sister. Shantara descended into Temohpab's darkness, forsaking
the land of light. Those among the elves most loyal to her followed, choosing
to remain below the surface of the earth in night's constant embrace. In
time, the Dyvie, or Children of Night, as they were now known, built the great
city of Meran'Aysa, the City of Twilight, whose location is now wiped from
mortal minds.

Shantara bore Temohpab two children, first Morkith and then Rhiqua. The
first, Morkith, was hideously warped by the fury and hatred that his mother
carried in her heart. Unloved and unloveable, he shunned all but his younger
sister, Rhiqua, who he felt could be of use to him. Morkith turned his innate
talent for the mystic arts into an intense study of the undead and demons,
making his ultimate goal the destruction of everything upon the earth.
Rhiqua, beautiful and destructive, became known as the Child of Hate, poisoned
by her mother's constant venom into hating almost all of creation, seeking to
cleanse the world in a torrent of fire.

After the epic battle with her sister, Tarafas sought complete seclusion
from the world. Indeed, she withdrew herself so completely from the mortal
realm that she gradually faded from mention by name, and seemed remembered
only by her title, the Dawnstar. The child she bore was a girl, whom Dawnstar
named Cynnis. She taught the child to love the woodlands and the wild things
that dwelt within. Cynnis grew to be the protector of the forests, and in
fact, all of nature. In time, the Llewyrr came to hold her in almost the same
regard they had once given to Tarafas, now faded in their memory.

Continued in The Twins2.