In the years that I had been attempting to revive my husband from the Realm of the Dead, I had only ever worked the Rite on Beltane and Samhain. It was only after some great reluctance that I was at last persuaded by a friend and ally that perhaps my timing was a little off. It took not a little to convince me that during Lughnasadh, when the bud and tree were in full flower and yet not quite ripe for the harvest, it would be a far more appropriate time to attempt to bring Sebastien’s spirit back from the aethers.
This night, not within my Insularium but rather within the family crypts that were nestled deep beneath the Château de Rochefort, the sweet cloying incense of aromatic herbs, frankincense, myrrh, camphor, bittersweet and copal burned upon a brazier. The scented cloud hung like a miasma sometimes seeming to take the form of watching spirits and daemons. Upon the floor both on the paving stones and upon the walls were inscribed the sigils and seals surrounding the Circle around Sebastien’s sarcophagus. There were the signs of Solomon, the invocation of Saturn, the offerings of food, wine and the promise of the spilling of blood later that night. Upon the Altar was the Sword, the Chalice, the Scourge and the Sacrificial Blade. And upon my person, I wore the Veil rather than the Crown which now sat upon the very centre of the Altar, glittering as brightly as the stars that shone in the sky far above us. Beside it was the one that was intended for my Prince, my Consort – my Love. Every torch within the catacombs was lit, the underground river, even the lake itself seemed to glow and increase the light in the large, cavernous chamber.
All of the knowledge that I had gained in my life was fuelled by the intensity of desire, the desire to see my consort and have him returned to my side.
Hail to you of the East, South, West and North!
I am Sister to the Gods, Beloved Consort of the Fallen Ones!
In my veins flows the Blood of Danu!
Behold before you the distant Son of the Sidhe Kings
One of Thine Own, slain by deceit!
Cast into the Darkness those who have done this thing
I am not one who has defiled the Holy City of Gorias
I stood at the defence of Falias
I have not betrayed the Hidden Ones of Murias, Finias and Shasheksa!
Dataheh! Dataheh! Dataheh! Dataheh!
Eshep Sheshen, Sataiten Neha Azazeal a’Khetaha!
Micherechkhen ena Grigoriameh, Sidhe Danaeu!
Dataheh! Dataheh! Dataheh! Dataheh!
Sataiten Neha Azazeal a’Khetaha!
Dataheh! Dataheh! Dataheh! Dataheh!
Eshep Sheshen, Sataiten Neha Azazeal a’Khetaha!
On and on we chanted. Each Ritual element brought to a fevered pitch, dispatched as it should be. Every possible action tied with a precision that I did not know existed. The large chandelier that hung over us, probably made of iron, dripped with elaborate and ghastly waxen stalactites from the hundreds of candles that had been placed within it. In these depths, it seemed to glow with a purplish haze. In the shadows I could see the eyes of the ones who served Azazeal. I could see the swirl of aetheric whisps that could have been none other than Sebastien’s own ancestors or perhaps even those whom he had slain or the spirits in attendance. I paid no attention to any of these phenomena but rather kept my mind and my intent focused upon my husband that lay atop the great black basalt sarcophagus, that now seemed to also glow in the low light. If not Sebastien, surely it had become an almost a living, breathing thing that surrounded my husband’s long-stilled body. The etched panels rested comfortably on the bodies of Fae steeds and the wings of Faery maidens. It was a masterpiece of artwork that was lovingly crafted by my own People on the Fortunate Island.
Beside this dark tribute knelt my protege’, Amarante, her hair dishevelled and wild now that we were deep in the throes of our Working. She, too, was focused on every element of the Rite – though I knew that she feared the possibility of our success far more than she did of our failure. Still, I knew, she did this for me and she did so without question or hesitation. The deep rumbling of the thunder was the only indication of the raging storm that had now manifested above. We could see no lightning. But the air now pulsed and crackled with the electricity of both the thunderbolts and the Ritual itself.
I raised the Ritual knife, even as Azazeal stood behind me, looking on. Gone was the pretense of human form that he so easily assumed to ease his dealings with Humanity.Such things in the Magickal Circle of this kind were an unnecessary expenditure of energy for any of us. The bloom and stream of dark red appeared across my forearm and into the bowl upon the Altar even before the flicker of pain hit my awareness. I was unpreterbed by it. In fact, I revelled in it. With the spilled blood and pain, first from me, then from Amarante, we would render him animate once more. I opened my arms then lifted them high, the ribbon of crimson winding down over my arm and the bodice of my garment. I barely noticed until I felt Azazeal’s touch when he moved my elbow ever-so-slightly. I whirled around to face him, looking into the yellowed Daemon eyes and seeing the slight glint within them.
“The other, Faelyn,” Azazeal rumbled, “You must give the others as well.”
I nodded and with a quick, yet deep slice, he cut the other arm as well and I bled anew. One more deep breath and I pulled aside the deep collar of the bodice of my gown. “Eshep Sheshen, Sataiten Neha Azazeal a’Khetaha….” I whispered closing my eyes. Then at last I could only speak one final word, with one last breath before the poison of the entheogen that the blade had been soaked in entered full force into my bloodstream, I could only move my liips to form the name; “Sebastien…”
They say that the Sidhe do not die, not truly. That like Immortals, if you do not kill them in a specific way, they are once again revived. I assure you from my own experience, and surely upon this night, that I passed very closely up under the left wing of the Angel of Death. I saw the great, black fathomless countenance look down at me,. Even in that abyss there seemed to pass a sense of recognition that quickly faded into the realisation of who and what I was. In those glowing pits for eyes and within the eyes of any of the Host, we the Fae are just as cursed and fallen as our Nephilim and Grigori kin. We the Fae are nothing to them other than arrogantly rebellious children who will most probably be dealt with whenever the jealous Deity that they so mindlessly serve finally gets tired of us refusing His alleged benevolence.
I have been called ‘Faelyn the Arrogant’, and ‘Faelyn the Fool’, all because I had fallen for a mortal man and would not be satisfied the end of that even when that very man died within my arms. I defiantly spat in the face of their Heavenly edicts for over four hundred years, and now I had the temerity to demand the rest, reciting the authoritative utterances in Enochian . The Angel of Death dropped into my palm the vessel that contained my husband’s soul, that had been held captive there – within that place between Heaven and Earth, and not quite Hell.
Who knows how many days and nights we were in the crypts? I only remember sobbing at the foot of the sarcophagus once more, having gotten farther than I ever had before, only to see no sign from Sebastien’s cold, still-lifeless body. Even Azazeal had shrugged and disappeared into the dark cavernous reaches of the Crypts. With him followed the others. It was Amarante’s gentle hands that urged me back toward the surface, out of the belly of the Earth, away from the death and disappointment. I followed, aching, our bodies and clothing coated with soot, sweat and blood as we made our way up the winding stone staircases. It was only when I reached the small hidden room behind the walls of the library that I felt a stronger, male hand close over my arm lifting me up, even as I shook and sobbed at another year’s failure at the only thing I had ever truly desired. Somehow in my despair he was able to coax me to drink and then took me to my own chambers, staying with me the whole time.
In spite of the touch of my Anam Cara, I confess, he was not exactly the man I wanted that night. Hsu had me undressed and ordered me bathed and put abed where he wrapped a strong arm around me. It must have been the healing warmth of Hsu next to me. In my misery I had to acknowledge, at least to myself, that I had once again failed to accomplish what I set out to do. His caresses were warm and made me forget, and Goddess help me, I could not stop myself from imagining what it would have felt like to have succeeded that night. I arched against him, responding at last. I somehow think Hsu knew that I was not really with him that night – at least not in my mind. Knowing me and knowing the ways of Magick, it did not bother him.
I awkened from a satisfied slumber; the bed empty, only to hear hear Hsu speaking to someone in the library that I realised something was different. It took a moment for me to actually realize who it was he was talking to.
“If you are whom I suspect you are,” Hsu’s voice growled quietly, “I know someone who will be very relieved to see you. But be that as it may, you are in fact, wearing my robe.”
“Yes, however, you were sleeping with my wife,” came the silky, court-trained voice, “so I do believe that rather makes us even, Oui?”
I rounded the corner into the Chateau library, and there, before a roaring fire, was my once-dead husband. His one eye assessed me then Hsu. A smirk twitched at the corner of Sebastien’s mouth.
“I trust you slept well, Faelyn, in spite of the storm?” he smiled not at all unpleasantly.
To say that I had an overwhelming desire to procure the nearest, heaviest object within reach and hurl it straight at his head was an understatement. But much to my chagrin, I found that I could not even move. I was, in that moment, absolutely dumbstruck. ‘After more than four hundred years…… ‘ When at last I did find my voice, it was not what I had imagined that I would say to him after all of this time.
“You’re late, Sebastien,” I glared at him.
“Mon enchantreusse,” Sebastien all but purred at me, “Surely you know by now I have always tended to be a late riser.”
Muse: Fanny Fae / Faelyn
Fandom: Original Character / Folklore / Mythology
Word Count: 1994
civ_barbarian, 1st_of_the200, sunnotshadows & all_forme are each lovingly used with the kind permission of their respective scribes.
10 responses to “95.6 Ritual Awakening”
Thank you. I spent a great deal of time on this one, and I probably will still tweak it some more. The Ritual elements just sort of popped out. I couldn’t find what I was looking for online, so I just…*cough* um…”channeled it”. 😉
My typist would like me to let you know how very wonderful, how heart-rending this post is, my lady. And she is again struck greatly by your strength of will and passion.
And as for myself? I am only sorry that I was awake in the little room off the library, and was not there to see the morning scene play out. But then, perhaps it is best that I was not there after all.
I thank you for that, my dear.
Perhaps it was best that you were not awake, Amarante. And maybe if you ask either Hsu or Sebastien, perhaps you can clear up the mysetery of who it was who covered you up that night.
It is only the truth, Madame.
And – non. Thank you but non. It was a simple question, and some mysteries need not always have answers. I have no wish to know which man touched me in my sleep. I have had dreams enough about it for years.
I confess, as a man who was once a proud Puritan, I know little of the rites of which you speak. Those things which would disown such things, I find no shock of now.
*looks a Amarante, his eyes soft* I somehow think that under the circumstances, you did all that you needed to Madame in the name of Love. For what greater power is there than this?
Oui, it is true. Madame de Rochefort, she… *looks up at Faelyn, smiling* She was the knowledge, the power, the passion that pulled life back from death itself. And it was love that gave her that passion, that power I think.
I was there, she was both mighty and terrible, and awe-inspiring. I would not like to be the one against whom she brings her powers. Indeed, I would not like to see what would remain of such a foolish creature, for they would be foolish indeed to attempt to hamper her in her desires.
But in listening to your Lady, the Comtesse de Rochefort, tell the tale, it would seem to me that you, too, showed a great deal of love. For your love for her is clear, sweet Amarante’. I doubt that anyone, no matter if they be man, woman, spirit or something other – could possibly stand between you and that love.
Please do not be distressed by that observation, Mademoiselle- for I find it quite admirable on your part.
Wow. That was amazing and breathtaking and beautiful.
Since I friended you however long ago it was, I have always enjoyed reading about the different aspects of Fanny’s life. Entries like this are wonderful and it always feels like a small glimpse into a very, very long past.
Thank you very much for that. It means a great deal.
Fanny / Faelyn’s love for her husband is probably one of the most driving things in her life – outside of her desire for Power and her determination toward survival of herself and her loved ones. And yes, her past is very, very long and most likely the final draft of the novel will be coming out this year. I’ve been futzing around with it long enoug. It is most definitely time.