young folk, in this story I will travel with you into the far past of the
Shendar, the desert people. I will go to a time in which the Ráhaz’Dáth was even
a more perilous place than now, in a time when the Shendar had not yet adapted
to the way of the desert yet. The aj, who play a large part in present Shendar
culture, had not yet been tamed, and so much wisdom was yet to be developed.
I will tell you of a romance so cruel, so full of tears and death, so full of
pain and sorrow. Yes, indeed, the story of two souls, whose lives were
intertwined from the first moment of history. All have their own destiny, but it
is my belief that Seyella elected these two destinies to become one, like the
all consuming love that existed between them. Of whom am I talking? Well, if you
spare me the time, I will give countenance to the tale of Mi’khran and Dilluar…
It happened that there were two lovers, Mi’khran, son of Ul'Ghan'a, and Dilluar,
daughter of Me'shen'a. They belonged to the clan which eventually would become
the Shen-D’aurus. Given their appearance, these two younglings were always
looked upon as being Baveras-blessed – they did not know how wrong that
assumption would prove to be – because they emanated a tranquil beauty and
seemed the true incarnation of pure youth.
If one looked into the deep blue eyes of beautiful Dilluar, they would see the
eternity, the ever moving waves of their precious Seven Jewels. How foreboding
these sights were, they did not realise. Her jet-black hair would reflect the
pure passion of Foiros, when it glimmers with the last sun-rays of the lingering
dusk. And her face, ah, were hers not such a cruel fate, she would have been
inspiration to many a poet or artist, and not just a figure in a tale told by an
old man in his last days on this world. When she smiled, it was as if the very
air you breathed was sweetened with the subtle perfume of love. How can I
describe such beauty accurately, how can I describe the subtle signs of elegance
in her every move, the touch of her hand, the sensuality in every single thing
Mi’khran seemed the embodiment of strength and agility, possessing the power of
youth but also already the stamina of men much older than him. It was a joy to
see him climb the great dunes of the central desert or participate in other
games, his enthusiastic laugh would be heard all over the nomad-camp, inspiring
the hearts of the people nearby. His prowess in the hunt was not easily matched,
his courage and pride like those of Foiros himself, fierce and flaming.
There was also another matter which separated these two from the rest; Love.
Never before had there been seen a love so fierce, so strong, like a fire which
burns unquenchable, the tongues of the flames reaching higher and higher,
marking the sky red and full of motion. Never were the two seen separately,
always together, in almost every subtle movement of their bodies one could
easily read the signs of love, the affection for the other so great, that each
seemed less without the other. They lived their lives and they were full of joy,
the very presence of them enhanced the group, strengthened everyone’s heart in
grief-stricken times, heightening the pleasure in joyous times.
Then it was their fate that disaster should strike the young couple. It was that
day that Mi’khran set out to gather food with his friends. In those days,
survival was the most important matter to the Shendar, and if they could not
scavenge a meal from the desert, then they would soon perish. The group was
travelling towards the Jewels, for beasts were often seen there, when a young
friend of Mi’khran, Killuan, suddenly fell to the ground screaming.
It was only then that the group saw the danger. In their youthful enthusiasm,
they were all barely a year passed their first kill, they had failed to
recognize the rock they passed as one of the dreaded rock-snakes. But they could
clearly see the magnificent animal now, its head raised above the ground, its
eyes keenly on the man on the ground.
Everyone was as motionless as an adan’sonia tree, not able to move.
Mi’khran, in his courage, was the first of the men to move. He raced towards
Killuan and as he saw that the snake was about to strike he reached his
companion. Pushing his friend aside, he faced the snake alone. But the snake had
already begun its strike and under the eyes of his companions, Mi’khran was
struck down, falling to the ground whilst holding the ráhaz'estár in a fierce
grip. The venomous fangs had pierced his shoulder, and all knew that the young
man had forfeited his live. In his last seconds, Mi’khran managed to hold the
snake and kill it with a clean blow from his knife. Then they both fell to the
ground, their blood mingling with each other, all hope of life lost, and sorrow
filled the companions. They began the slow and horrid journey back to the camp,
Mi’khrans body carried by the others.
Oh cruel fate! Was it not that just that day, Dilluar had gone out to see if her
beloved was already returning; was it not that just that day, she saw her hope
and love vanish in one strike as she saw the body draped on his companions
shoulders. There could be no doubt, her soul mate had been bitterly slain and
death had overtaken his glorious life.
The young Dilluar fled from the scene, running as fast as possible towards the
Jewels, not wanting to go anywhere, just wanting to be nowhere.
She collapsed eventually, on a dune near the Seven Jewels. There fair Dilluar
wept and wept and her tears resembled a waterfall so rare in that region. It is
said that a small pool was created by her tears and she was in the middle of it.
Only the gods know how long she stayed there, on her knees, crying.
Eventually she fell into a deep sleep, overcome by her tiredness, succumbing to
the easing blankness of slumber, the soothing emptiness of the land of dreams.
She awoke to the sight of small creatures around her. They were sandrollers, a
curious type of creature. Small balls of fur they seemed, and they were drinking
from her pool of tears. Comforted by the presence of other beings, Dilluar
crawled towards them and sat with them, trying not to scare the wild creatures
too much. They remained with her there, drinking her sorrow, calming the young
When her tears were all gone, the sandrollers made ready to go away, moving in
the direction of the Jewels. The once so strong but now fragile mind of Dilluar
could not handle this though; she could not be left alone again. Summoning all
her energy and strength, she pursued the beasts, in her mind they were the only
things in this world which could keep her sane. She managed to follow these
little creatures right down to the edge of one of the Jewels. There the
sandrollers stopped and started drinking again, not from her tears this time,
but from the fresh glimmering water of the Jewels. She fell next to them, and
also drank the cool fluid. It soothed her sore throat, harsh and sore from the
sandy winds of the desert.
Oh, would it be that the story would end here, the tale not full of doom but of
righteous sorrow. But alas, it was not allowed to be so as the sandrollers
seemed to be swept away by the waves of Baveras, right under the eyes of the
frightened girl. All her beauty had vanished in the mask of sorrow and grief she
wore, and as she saw her last buoy on her lake of sanity sink and disappear
under the dark waves of madness, she lost her reason, her life, her passion. She
arose and jumped into the deep water, which embraced her with its cool arms. She
did not even try to remain afloat; had she done so, she would have seen that the
sandrollers were capable of swimming, they had not drowned, they had just acted
in their natural capacity. Poor Dilluar just let herself be taken away by the
numbing waves, desiring oblivion. Baveras granted her that void of thoughts and
took her to the heart of the lake. It is said that she remains there still.
This grievous story ends as they actually all end, with the gods. Baveras,
becoming aware of the tragedy that had befallen in her domain, became so angry
that she vented all her rage by cursing the sandrollers. She accused them of
misleading the young girl, and forever coloured their eyes blood red, to remind
all on the death they had caused. In addition, she banned the sandrollers from
her domain forever; they would never be able to swim in the water again, they
would simply float, almost never touching the water, the waves of the Jewels.
Thus ends this tale, it is not full of joy, no, but then again, is this world
not wrought with tears and sorrow? Is it not just that which gives us our
history, our identity? We are shaped by the tales of people like Mi’khran the
Brave and Dilluar the Fair, they affect us in a way which we’ll never truly
understand, but also in a way which will change our hearts forever.