Myths of the Ravnivori Empire Part 1

Here are a couple of myths from my homebrew setting.  They both feature Amaz and Tauronus, those two avatars of the battle of the genders.  As might be expected, they feature some pettiness, fighting, sex and falling from grace.  They’re very Greek, actually and both gods come off as being rather human in their failings.  But then, I’ve always like the Greek myths.

Myths

How Amazons and Minotaurs Came to be Like Other Mortals

When the world was first populated by men, elves and dwarves, both Amaz and Tauronus looked upon it and decided that they wanted mortal children of their own. Amaz shone her light down on a fertile patch of soil and plants in the shape of beautiful women sprang up. As they were made in her own image, the goddess named them after herself – Amazons.

Tauronus quested deep into the earth, finding stones imbued with the power and energy of the soil itself. He brought them back to his home and carved his own likeness into them. With a mighty clap he awoke his sons and gave them his own name – Minotaurs.

For untold centuries neither Amazon nor Minotaur knew the sensual touch of another. When an Amazon wanted a daughter, she lay upon fertile soil for a day, baring herself to the powerful rays of Amaz herself. If she found favor with the goddess, a new Amazon would sprout and over the next months she would care for the tender plant that was her daughter until she was old enough to pull free of the soil and walk on her own.

Minotaurs would delve deep into the earth, following labyrinthine passages that would bewilder others and leave them stranded and lost. If they please Tauronus, they would find a magic stone, one almost too large to carry and have to haul it back out. Then, they spent months carving the stone into the likeness of a minotaur. When the carving was done, their son came to life to walk on his own.

And Minotaurs and Amazons were happy but the goddess Sivis Kee was not. She was jealous of the two races because all other men and animals in the world worshipped her as they mated but Minotaurs and Amazons had no need to.

In her pride and greed, Sivis Kee set out upon a plan to bring them to her, as well.

Her first target was the king of the minotaurs, for she knew that if she could corrupt him the rest would follow. She lay in wait for him the next time he delved into the caverns to find a stone to become his new son, taking the form of a female minotaur.

He came across her before he found a stone and she seduced him, using all of her sensual skills and arts to show him the pleasures of the flesh. She also provided him what he had originally been looking for, giving birth to a minotaur and handing it over to him.

The amazon queen was no more difficult to seduce. As she lay in the light of Amaz, Sivis Kee appeared to her as a male amazon. Just as she’d done with the minotaur king, she introduced the amazon queen to the delights that were her specialty and also left her with the gift of a child.

While both the minotaur king and amazon queen were still able to get children the way their creators had intended, they could not forget Sivis Kee’s insidious lessons and each sought out paramours. Their children with Sivis Kee naturally had a rapacious desire for the pleasures of the flesh.

From there, the corruption slowly spread throughout their nations as other mintotaurs and amazons learned Sivis Kee’s pleasures.

Worse, all of the children conceived in the way of other mortals were incapable of reproducing in the traditional ways. Eventually, all minotaurs and amazons were only capable of reproducing as other mortals do.

Both Amaz and Tauronus were furious with not only Sivis Kee but also their own people. Sivis Kee cooled the ire of both gods in her usual way. Their mortal followers were not so lucky. Because they had chosen the way of other people Amaz cursed her chosen people to bear their children as other people did. Amazons had to carry their babies in their wombs for 9 months just as human women did and had to suffer through the pain of childbirth just the same.

Because minotaurs had allowed themselves to be distracted by the female form, Tauronus made that distraction an obsession. No longer would his chosen people have the focus and calm necessary to make the wondrous stone carvings that could come to life. At all hours of the day and night, thoughts of women and the pleasures they could provide would creep into their thoughts.

And that is how amazons and minotaurs came to be like other mortals.

How Centaurs Came to Be

Just as her chosen people, one of Amaz’s greatest joys is riding. In fact, it is this joy that takes her across the heavens every day, her glowing shield providing heat and light to all those below.

In the time before time, Amaz’s mount was the mother of all horses, a glorious, powerful mare named Centia. Centia could run faster than the wind and for weeks without tiring. She was more beautiful than the moon with a gleaming, sleek coat, straight back, and proud head. She was also filled with wisdom and Amaz often asked her for her advice, always finding it valuable and true. She was so glorious that gravity refused to hold her and she was capable of crossing sky and stars as easily as land and water.

She was so beautiful that, one day as she was bearing Amaz across the heavens, Tauronus caught a glimpse and immediately lusted after her.

He approached Amaz and asked the goddess to gift her mount to him. Centia was not her property but her friend so Amaz could not give her to Tauronus. She did not tell him this however and simply told him “no” finding that much more amusing.

Tauronus then offered to buy her from Amaz, providing ever more extravagant payments, until he finally brought her an entire mountain. When Amaz laughed at his exorbitance, he cast it into the sea, creating a small island.

Amaz’s denials only spurred on Tauronus’ desires and, after discarding the idea of fighting Amaz (they were too closely matched) for Centia, he decided to use a more subtle approach.

Taking the form of a massive, well-formed bull, Tauronus snuck into the pasture where Centia spent her nights while waiting for Amaz to ride her each day. She was wary at first but he simply grazed in her field the first night. On the second, he got a little closer. On the third closer still. After a month, they were grazing side by side. Another month and they were cavorting together.

Amaz did not realize anything was wrong, though she noticed her otherwise indefatigable steed was growing ever more listless and dreamy. That is, until Centia began to show. Centia had freely given Tauronus the gift that Amaz refused him and was carrying the inevitable results.

Amaz was furious that she had been bested by the other god. In her fury, she attacked him, but they were too evenly matched and she soon gave up the assault when it became obvious that the outcome was far from certain and that Retra and all on it would likely be destroyed in the conflict.

Unable to vent her ire on her fellow god, she instead took her anger out on her former friend. Centia was stripped of much of her divine power and cast down to live on Retra.

In the due course of time, she gave birth to Tauronus’ offspring, a being who shared both her equine traits and the humanoid traits of his true form. This child was named after both his parents – the first centaur.

Centia was saddened by her reduction in stature. Tauronus took pity on her and reshaped her so that her form was more in matching with that of her son. Without the constant reminder of what she was, Centia was soothed somewhat, though still prone to melancholy.

It is said that, even today, Centia roams the deepest parts of the Sea of Grass, still beautiful, still powerful and swift, though only a little more than mortal. It is also said that Tauronus still visits her from time to time. The results of these dalliances are the centaurs who possess horns like their fathers, individuals who are always destined for greatness and glory.

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