A spirit entered Celundynn’s watery heaven of Ansyllar, making its way with a message. This entity verified her previous outbound message was received. Another meeting, this time for the sake of her people’s lives. The messenger, made of swirling stones with two eyes shining like magma, stopped a good distance away from her as she sat on her throne of creation. She sat for a while in contemplation of its presence. Time became very flexible within the Celestial Spheres. Ansyllar, home of all Undine spirits, was no exception.
During this time, Celundynn thought about what she knew.
Her husband’s blasphemous creations, humanity, caused mayhem and strife for the Salamander species and their Dragon gods. It would only be a matter of time before it all came apart. Whispers of the Dragon gods rising up and uniting tickled her ears. An emissary living in the Crater of Lugos cried out to her in prayer, telling her about the plans Draax has. The waters and Draax’s fleet have stayed quiet for a long time after their strike on Ar-Indurr. It would only be a matter of time. Time she did not have in the real world.
The Goddess of Shimmering Light and Shallow Waters knew her symbiotic relationship with her followers. Nothing would stand in the way of her keeping them safe. Including her own husband.
Celundynn held court in her Palace of Eternal Light, a construction of miraculous will, carved out of dreams and hopes. Bright walls made of luminous bubbling water flowing up and down divided the underwater palace. The floor looked much like any other floor you would find in the ocean, filled with sand, small creatures, and rocks. Arching over the strange walls of dividing water, fibrous coral made of strange glowing filament filled the ceiling, a living plant stretching over the whole palace. Celundynn herself formed it from the dying wishes of a coral reef, destroyed long ago by rising methane gas from the ocean floor.
The small elemental creature knew it stood out as a dark, rocky shape, swirling in the otherwise calm palace. So it delivered the message quickly.
“The Gnome gods will gather for you, Celundynn, to hear your plea. Meet us in the Orchard of Knowledge, Reason, and Madness when the next lunar moon is full over the city of Jaash. The exact point will be detailed in another message. Our hearts are made of stone, so make sure to bring passion and logic with you -- else your requests will fall on deaf ears.”
“Insolent spirit, I should crush you where you stand. But I will come at the appointed time. And I will bring both passion and reason!”
The rock spirit left her palace rumbling with swirling crushed stones. The Goddess of the Shallow Waters watched the messenger disappear out of her realm. One of her many priestess advisors approached her throne. She stopped and bowed low, waiting for permission to speak. Celundynn decided long ago that every spirit in her realm would stay in the form of mermaid, with the upper half very humanoid, and the lower half a fish, to show her commitment and love for all water and land creatures. Her priestess advisors were no exception, wearing elaborate jewelry on their Human parts and allowing their tails to swim freely with no constraints. The priestess who bowed before her waiting for permission was once the finest negotiator in the seas. Norhenna’s advice came from the heart and reached through the fog of information, doubt, and fear.
“Speak Norhenna, I wish your council.”
“Goddess of the Light and Shallow Waters teeming with life, I understand Gnomes. After spending several of my living years as your ambassador living in the city of Pothma, nestled deep in Rhok-Kanmor mountain range where the most stubborn of Gnomes, the Stoneborn, call home; I believe you must appeal to Methussa. She will listen, and the other Gnome gods will follow. But to convince her you must state our case. The Dragon gods are uniting and will come to destroy us.”
“Are we sure about this? Even now it sounds ludicrous. Their very nature is chaos and fire. They spread out their will and extinguish themselves before even thinking of a full assault on us. I only hear rumors and information inferred from my priests. Nothing solid. How can I make a case?”
“Here.” Priestess Advisor Norhenna handed the goddess a crystal, deep blue in color, swirling patterns within. “The spirit of Cargo Ship Captain Farthreen Wavecrasher from the city of Nesh is inside this crystal. Let him speak before the Gnomes. They were overrun and destroyed. Even their spirits were enslaved into crystals like the one you have. One of our scouts managed to sneak aboard a Salamander vessel leaving the scene and steal several crystals back so they may find peace in your heaven.”
“This is horrible. Free him at once! Why did you keep his soul trapped in the crystal after it was recovered?”
“We, uh, we wanted to make sure to show you what the Salamanders did. What their gods practice and make our case.”
“FREE HIM NOW.”
The crystal parted. A long haired greenish blue kelp mane cascaded down to his shoulders. This full, deep blue water moss bearded, handsome faced, muscular Undine covered in jewels and armor caused many spirits, including Celundynn, to pause in thought as he materialized in the palace. Only his spirit remained, but it formed into his real life appearance. Slowly he glanced around, aware he was in humanoid form, with two legs and two arms, able to maintain and sail his cargo ship.
Cargo ships, like the one Captain Wavecrasher commanded, could not reasonably carry Undines in any other state except land form. Often cargo ship crews and captains remained outcasts of their society, but their services were vital. Without the trading and supplies they brought in, each city would lose precious resources. The backbone of Undine society would collapse without the hard work and effort of their cargo ships. For this privilege of sailing ships and bringing goods they gave up full time aquatic forms, unless they were in a life or death situation where transformation was needed.
“Am I in heaven, our home of Ansyllar?”
“Yes, Captain Farthreen Wavecrasher.” Celundynn spoke musically with a smile.
“My goddess Celundynn, you are incredibly beautiful. My heart gladdens that I could make it here. We thought our ship was doomed and our souls imprisoned by Salamanders.”
“One of our scouts rescued you from a fate worse than death. I need your services one more time.”
“Anything, my goddess of light.” He returned the smile given to him by his goddess. The other priestesses noticed the subtle flirtation.
“Come with me to the Celestial Gardens. I ask you as a loyal subject and someone worthy of telling your story once again. Tell our allies what happened on the day of your death.”
“So I shall, my goddess. I am yours.”