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Gerjet and Waer

Long ago when glass was still new, deep in the woods there lived a poor man with six daughters. The oldest was Gerjet, a Shaper who thought herself stronger than even Sol Himself even though just a little girl. But when her father tried to reprimand her for her blasphemies, Gerjet would don her Armor and chase him from his own home. A willful girl, Gerjet refused to do any work, even filling the weightless luz jar from the nearby nodus. Instead she wandered the woods all day.

But one day she returned to her home to find her father and five sisters gone to her grandmother’s without her. They left her only a bit of food and the luz jar she refused to fill to wait out the night until their return. So she set out for the nodus but could not catch a single Breath to fill her luz jar.

Soon her head began to hurt, but she could not leave the ley, for it was her only light and she did not know the way home. And as midnight came, she heard a woman’s voice.

“I have heard tale of a Shaper named Gerjet, who believes herself stronger than Sol Himself and would like to test that claim.”

Gerjet turned to find a woman where there was no woman before, and fear filled her, for she knew it was midnight, and only Waer wandered the nodi crossroads then.

“A wager then,” the woman said. “Your Shaper strength against mine. Surely if you can overcome Sol, you can overcome a woman frail as me. And if you win, I shall give you your heart’s desire. But if I come out the victor, you shall serve me for the rest of your life.”

For her willfulness, Gerjet was still a clever girl and knew never to make a deal with Waer. But she also knew she would not survive if Waer pursued her, so Gerjet grinned.

“Only Waer makes wagers at midnight. Are you she?”

“I am indeed,” the woman answered.

“Impossible,” Gerjet said. “Waer is a monster made of a thousand black Breaths who can block out the moon. Surely you are not her.”

Suddenly the woman’s skin fell away, and she rose into the night as Waer’s chimera, with the head of a lion, the body of a ram, tail of a snake, and wings of an eagle. “I am she,” the chimera thundered.

But Gerjet shook her head. “No, I have heard of many ghuls who can make themselves as giants. But only Waer can truly make herself small.”

“Like this,” asked Waer as she became the size of a child.

“That is small, but I have heard Waer can become much smaller.”

“Like this,” asked Waer as she became the size of a cat.

“That is small, but I have heard Waer can become much smaller.”

“Like this,” asked Waer as she became the size of a mouse.

“Perfect,” said Gerjet as she suddenly scooped the tiny Waer up in her luz jar. “You truly must be Waer.”

Waer raged within the luz jar, but Gerjet knew even Sol’s enemy could not break the glass. But she also knew that it would one day break and Waer would hunt the Shaper who trapped her behind glass. So Gerjet buried the luz jar deep and departed the woods. She knew she could never return home again, nor reveal her Shaper talents to another living soul lest Waer discover her.

Her Shaper strength stolen from her, Gerjet was still not afraid, for she knew she was a clever girl, and clever girls cannot be caught.

Author Image.jpg

MD Presley is a screenwriter, blogger and occasional novelist… which basically means he’s a layabout.  He has written two books on fantasy worldbuilding, and teaches worldbuilding techniques, tricks, and tips at Forging Fantasy Realms once a week on YouTube. 

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