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Author Topic: The Windrunner  (Read 2367 times)
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Coren FrozenZephyr
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« on: 02 November 2012, 06:08:08 »

Again, inspired by Barbara Kingsolver. The opening lines of Pigs in Heaven caught my eye - a book which I have not yet read by the way:

"Women on their own run in Alice's family. This dawns on her with the unkindness of a heart attack and she sits up in bed to get a closer look at her thoughts, which have collected above her in the dark."



The Windrunner

Categorisation
a) Bestiary: Apparitions
b) Bestiary: Mythical Beasts
c) Bestiary: Sentient Beasts
d) Bestiary: Magical Beasts
e) Cosmology: Beasts: Apparitions

Overview
Windrunners are spirits that ride the morning winds. But whether they are a benevolent presence or “awful, awful things” is very much in the eye of the beholder.

It is said of some women, often with a disapproving look and a rolling of the eyes, that “women on their own run in their family”. Perhaps it is exactly this quality which attracts Windrunners - a call of kindred spirits, a resonance.

Having lived a lifetime in a brick house, neatly pressed between a husband and two neighbours, these ungainly, inconsiderate women wake up one morning to find a Windrunner dancing around them, for them - with them. And over the course of the day, after the stupor of a decade dutifully spent, a fierce independence comes into their eyes again. By Sunrest, there is rest no more in their hearts, which for so long lay undisturbed and moth-ed over. Then, we say of such women: They have “gone with the wind”.

Husbands and oppressive mothers-in-law: Beware the Windrunner!

Appearance
Unless you are the one for whom the Windrunners have come, you are more likely to feel them as an “absence” than as a spiritual “presence”. One moment you spy a movement out of the corner of your eye, a streaming past, a shimmering of the air, a ripple in the breeze. The next, it is gone, leaving no reason to think it had ever been there. Bird song clatters in the space between trees, hollow air that seems vast now and suddenly empty.

And if you are indeed the prospective eloper, you would hear of their coming long before you see their passing. First, you might hear a song in the wind, as if the very air was singing. In an hour, it will become apparent that the breeze is dancing for you – inviting you to run with the wind, to run with them, the Windrunners.

But of course all this is little more than folklore. How could we, those left behind, know how Windrunners tempt innocent women out of a life well-lived and infect them with notions of independence? Only those who have gone with the wind will ever know what truly transpired in those moments. And as we all know, women who run with the Windrunners are never seen again.

Special Abilities
Windrunners can travel without being seen and can generally do anything you would expect from the morning wind: lift a skirt here and knock over a pan there, rouse sleepers out of bed, make people groan or put a smile on their face. However, their signature ability is to “liberate” women and induce them into flight, to awaken their thirst for freedom and the outdoors.

Territory
Windrunners travel on the morning breeze. Consequently, anywhere on the Disk visited by morning winds remains exposed to the frolics of the Windrunners.

Contrary to popular belief, very few Windrunner “abductions” take place in Gondolwain and Serphelorian lands - perhaps because the women there are already sufficiently independent, and see little need to run away with the wind.

Note to Art: Perhaps pictures of Serphelorian and Gondolwain women could be inserted here?

Habitat/Behaviour
Windrunners run with the morning winds, and therefore women (or perhaps we ought to say: husbands?) are at their most vulnerable in the hours between Daybreak and Sunblaze.

Though women may pretend they simply require less and less sleep as they grow old, the real reason one sees so many ladies of advanced years off and about on the streets in those early hours of the day is something else entirely. Almost certainly, they are mothers-in-law ‘doing the rounds’, tiptoeing around the newly-weds’ abode to chase off any wayward wind spirits and peeking in through the marital window to make sure that all is well – which, of course, comes with its own dangers: Trying to save their daughters and brides from Windrunners, they themselves might fall prey to Nightbrewers and Witchmakers. After all, unlike Wild Magic, which sparks in adolescence, witchery is a talent that peaks later in life, after the marriage of one’s offspring.

Diet
Unknown.

Mating
Theories on how Windrunners mate differ based on whether one believes them to be wayward male spirits which corrupt wives and lead them into temptation (in which case, there must be a cluster of renegade wives rearing cots of baby-Windrunners somewhere over the mountains, having caught the hail whilst trying to run away from the rain); or women who have run away with the wind (in which case, Windrunners reproduce by a process of conversion, like wailwomen and whiteladies). Most likely the latter is true: Women who have ‘gone with the wind’ become Windrunners themselves.

Myth/Lore
Signs of impending disaster neighbours should keep a sharp lookout for: Do you know a woman who complains that she has become invisible to her husband, who now looks through her in the bedroom for his glasses or his keys, even when she is naked, her body a mere obstruction, like a stranger in a theatre blocking his view of the play? Becoming ‘invisible to husbands’ and complaining about it are the first signs that someone might be prime Windrunner material – both are, after all, invisible.

These spirits can affect anyone from the lowest peasant to a princess or queen – so kings often keep earth mages as a deterrent against the unwelcome visit of Windrunners.

Most Santharians blame the Gondolwain and the Sankrean for bringing Windrunners to our land from across the seas. But we, as educated readers of the Compendium, know that the first Windrunner was more likely Serphelorian.
« Last Edit: 02 March 2013, 16:23:28 by Artimidor Federkiel » Logged

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"I think that comes under the rule of Quia Ego Sic Dico."
"Yes, what does that mean?"
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"That doesn't sound like much of a rule!"
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Coren FrozenZephyr
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« Reply #1 on: 02 November 2012, 18:17:15 »

Oh God, I'm getting verbose again. Two sections and I'm already one Word page in...

Time to bring out the shears!
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"Everything should be as simple as possible and not simpler." Albert Einstein

"Is he allowed to do that?"
"I think that comes under the rule of Quia Ego Sic Dico."
"Yes, what does that mean?"
"'Because I say so', I think."
"That doesn't sound like much of a rule!"
"Actually, it's the only one he needs." (Making Money by Terry Pratchett)
Irid alMenie
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« Reply #2 on: 08 November 2012, 21:08:09 »

Ooooh... I know you're still working on this but I'd just like to say that I really like the idea, and now might have to use it for a character on the RP boards.
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Coren FrozenZephyr
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« Reply #3 on: 13 November 2012, 06:28:46 »

Thank you, Irid. I will try to finish it this week.
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"Everything should be as simple as possible and not simpler." Albert Einstein

"Is he allowed to do that?"
"I think that comes under the rule of Quia Ego Sic Dico."
"Yes, what does that mean?"
"'Because I say so', I think."
"That doesn't sound like much of a rule!"
"Actually, it's the only one he needs." (Making Money by Terry Pratchett)
Seeker
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« Reply #4 on: 29 November 2012, 04:00:01 »

Just dropping a note to let you know I read through the entry so far.  I find it intriguing and am looking forward to your finishing it.

 I wonder why Wind Runners don't pick males to influence?   undecided  grin
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Coren FrozenZephyr
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« Reply #5 on: 13 February 2013, 17:13:52 »

Finished!

Quote from: Seeker
I wonder why Wind Runners don't pick males to influence?  undecided  grin

I hear you, brother!
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"Everything should be as simple as possible and not simpler." Albert Einstein

"Is he allowed to do that?"
"I think that comes under the rule of Quia Ego Sic Dico."
"Yes, what does that mean?"
"'Because I say so', I think."
"That doesn't sound like much of a rule!"
"Actually, it's the only one he needs." (Making Money by Terry Pratchett)
Ta`lia of the Seven Jewels
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« Reply #6 on: 13 February 2013, 17:54:37 »

Coren!

I always thought you were a young male somewhere in Britain or on the beaches of Southern Turkey..
I doubt that now, for you could have not written that entry IF it would be so. This submission should come from me! Well, maybe my husband did never squeeze me between him and our neighbours (who would probably raise their brows if they knew what I'm doing in my free time - though WoW is worse than 'Worldbuilding' - that is only a waste of time and not prone to produce gunmen)

I like it soo much!

What I don't like is if you use a) and b), that disturbs the feeling.

AND there are other women wo fit in with the Gondolwainians (?) and Serphelorians (?), guess who!

Hmm, maybe these women know the windrunners also and give their men so much freedom to prevent a windrunner taking them with it.

I missed that submission when you posted it, how could I!

Edit: There are no Sankrean yet, so do you want to mention them already now?
« Last Edit: 13 February 2013, 18:08:57 by Ta'lia of the Seven Jewels » Logged

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Coren FrozenZephyr
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« Reply #7 on: 13 February 2013, 18:14:50 »

Ahaha - thank you Talia!

Quote
AND there are other women wo fit in with the Gondolwainians (?) and Serphelorians (?), guess who!
I forgot the Shendar!

Quote
Hmm, maybe these women know the windrunners also and give their men so much freedom to prevent a windrunner taking them with it.
Brilliant idea! Although, are we talking about the Shendar or Serphelorians now?

- The use of (a)-(b) will be removed.
- Sankrean: I usually like to seed references here and there before I write the tribe entry. Then, years later, when I sit down to sketch the tribe, I can do a search and find all these little reminders of what I had in mind. Breadcrumbs along the way, if you like!


PS: Beaches of western Turkey. ;) Just a stone throw away from the Greek islands - la dolce vita...
« Last Edit: 13 February 2013, 18:17:10 by Coren FrozenZephyr » Logged

"Everything should be as simple as possible and not simpler." Albert Einstein

"Is he allowed to do that?"
"I think that comes under the rule of Quia Ego Sic Dico."
"Yes, what does that mean?"
"'Because I say so', I think."
"That doesn't sound like much of a rule!"
"Actually, it's the only one he needs." (Making Money by Terry Pratchett)
Artimidor Federkiel
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« Reply #8 on: 19 February 2013, 03:50:17 »

Just read the entry, and while its shorter than others it is also delightfully different. :)

Personally I would suggest to move the following passage...

Quote
Windrunners are spirits that ride the morning winds. But whether they are a benevolent presence or “awful, awful things” is very much in the eye of the beholder. -
Husbands and oppressive mothers-in-law: Beware the Windrunner!

...up to the top of the entry, so that we get immediately introduced in the spirit nature, which was entirely unclear to me until I arrived at the mentioned passage. Guess it's easier to understand to the as of yet uninformed reader.

Personally I ask myself why these spirits seem to affect females only, why there are no other versions that maybe seduce males. But maybe that's a very different kind?

As for the pictures: Not sure if they should be there as you state yourself that the Gondolwains and the Serphelorians are not really affected due to their already established independence. So these pictures wouldn't be representative. A picture of a girl/woman dancing in the fields or so would fit much better, and maybe there's something in that regard somewhere at one of our new artists. Wouldn't be entirely uncommon.

Anyway, aura +1 for an entry of the different kind, and especially for finishing it as well! :D
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Coren FrozenZephyr
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« Reply #9 on: 24 February 2013, 20:16:37 »

(Day-off - or rather: allowed to visit the city for four hours. ;) )

Thanks Arti! I'm glad you like the entry.

Quote
Personally I would suggest to move the following passage...
Great idea!

I defer to your wisdom when it comes to the use of pictures. Let me know if anything catches your eye as you scroll our artists' galleries. Cheers!

Quote
Personally I ask myself why these spirits seem to affect females only, why there are no other versions that maybe seduce males. But maybe that's a very different kind?

All shall be made clear in good time! (That is: There is another spirit I have in mind, which is available exclusively for men.)
« Last Edit: 24 February 2013, 20:20:35 by Coren FrozenZephyr » Logged

"Everything should be as simple as possible and not simpler." Albert Einstein

"Is he allowed to do that?"
"I think that comes under the rule of Quia Ego Sic Dico."
"Yes, what does that mean?"
"'Because I say so', I think."
"That doesn't sound like much of a rule!"
"Actually, it's the only one he needs." (Making Money by Terry Pratchett)
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