Chapter Number: Two
Author: D. Sanders
Posting Completed Story in Five Chapters - Forgive the Barest of Proofreading
Series Title: La Luna ed il suo Amante
Chapter Number: Two
Author: D. Sanders
“Father Gallus!” Endys hollered to the old priest, his grey robes flapping wildly about his delicate frame. At eight years old, he was a wisp of a child next to the other children his age. His hair still so blond it gleamed white in any available light and his pale blue eyes like orbs of sky trapped in ice. He was a breathtakingly beautiful boy, gentle, serene and quiet, most of the time. Today he seemed alive with excitement as he raced to his mentor.
“Slow down lad, you will lose your breath or make me lose mine just watching you imp. What do you need child?” Gallus asked as Endys came to him with a very old looking book.
“Father Flamen gave this to me today at lectures. I wanted to show it to you.” Endys said, indeed out of breath as he handed the book, open, to the elderly priest.
“He said he found this book way back in the archive. It has pictures!” Endys smiled and pointed to the open page. “Look, it says Endys! That’s me!”
The page was a drawing of the lunar flowers that indeed the child had been named after.
“Aye, little white moon flower Endys. Named for Endymion, the flower god.” Gallus said closing the book and handing it back to the boy. “This is the story of Endymion. I think you will find it interesting. I’d like to hear your opinion on it after you read it.”
“That’s what Father Flamen said. I already read it during midday meals. Father Gordus yelled at me about food and books.” Endys said sheepishly, books weren’t allowed at the meal tables.
“Father Gordus is right. What if you had spilled food on this book, it would have been ruined.”
“I was real careful. I couldn’t stop reading it. It made me sad.”
“Why did it make you sad?”
“Because Lord Mane was left all alone. He must have been so sad. Lord Sol has all the flowers, but Lord Mane only had Endymion. The book didn’t say, but I bet Mane cried. I would have cried.”
Gallus nodded. “I bet he did. It is hard to lose one you love.”
“Why would Sol do that? He’s not a mean god. But that was real mean of him.”
“I cannot answer that Endys. I don’t know. Gods sometimes do things we mortals see as cruel. It could be Sol loved Endymion too, and men often fight with each other over things they love.”
“But it says that Endymion loved Mane. No one asked Endymion what he wanted other than the Mother Goddess. After that Mane and Sol fought and Endymion got hurt in the end.”
“Endys you are far too astute for a child. Yes, men do that and often hurt the ones they love most in the end. It is a sad part of life.” Gallus patted the child’s head.
“It’s not fair.”
“Another sad truth in life my son. Things are seldom ‘fair’ as you say.”
“It says the Endymion was reborn mortal, I hope Lord Mane got him back. Did he? The book doesn’t say.”
“I don’t know Endys. I think you will have to find that answer yourself.”
“I don’t know where to look.” Endys pouted, wanting the continuation of the story.
“Most answers are found within dear boy. Look within first, then without.” Gallus guided sending the boy back to his lessons smiling fondly as the reborn Endymion was beginning to show signs of awakening rapidly.
Endys sat curled upon his cot when the boy that shared his cell returned from lessons. “Have you decided yet Endys?” Poll asked as he set his books down on their shared study table.
Endys shut his well-worn book and nodded. “I think I did a long time ago. Lord Sol is good, and he makes the harvests grow and gives us light and warmth. But Lord Mane has always been the one I wanted to learn more about. I was named after the moon flower after all, I think it’s always been in me to follow him.”
“That silly little book? You’re basing your priesthood on a fable?”
“No. Well partly, I don’t know Poll. It’s hard to describe. Ever since I came here I was always shown both orders and while I see the good in both, I want and need to follow my heart here and it tells me this is the right choice for me. Whenever I consider choosing the sun priesthood, I feel sad inside. But when I think of following the lunar order, I feel at peace. Does that make any sense?”
“You always were odd Endys, you’re a dreamer.”
“I don’t dream. I never have.” Endys sighed turning his face to the window. “But I feel. Tomorrow in my interview I will choose Mane. You?”
“Sol. I’m a realist, he provides, the people prefer him too. Mane is too mysterious for me. I like cold hard facts.”
“I don’t want Mane lonely. I think this whole class is choosing Sol, and no one chose Mane last class. I want Mane to know he’s loved too. He protects us in our sleep. He keeps the darkness at bay, he’s all alone guarding the night.”
“Can a god BE lonely? They’re Gods!”
“I don’t know. I think so. It says they can love and hate, why can’t they feel other emotions too?” Endys asked and Poll shrugged.
“Who knows Endys? I’ll miss you, they’ll move us into different rooms tomorrow.”
Endys smiled and hugged Polls shoulders. “But I’ll still see you every day. We’ll still be friends Poll, don’t worry.” Endys reassured as he finished packing his few possessions in preparation for his interview and his entering the priesthood officially and just three days away from his twelfth birthday.
“Sol is angry.” Mane said as Gallus settled onto his cushion in the temple.
“Endys chose you, of course he is my Lord. We expected this eventually. Endys chose you the day he was born, he’s followed his heart ever since.”
Here Mane smiled and turned to look at his Priest. “Unlike his other mortal lives. I can feel Endymion’s soul fighting to break free. I watch the boy, he even looks like Endymion in every way, I am just waiting now until he calls, it will be soon.”
“What do you mean by call my Lord? He calls to you every day in prayer.”
“He calls me by my Mortal Name. Mane is the name man gave to me. When he calls my True name, that only Endymion knows, then and only then are my shackles broken and I can regain some of that I have lost.”
“Just some my lord?”
“Gallus, the curse Sol placed on Endymion has limits that Mother set. She was furious at Sol and it was she that made it so Endymion would be reborn and that neither Sol nor I could touch him unless he called our true names. First Endymion must call, then he must confess love, then he must face his final choice. Gallus, we are at the cusp of his awakening. Sol will be just as vigilant as I. He will send agents to sway if he can. Only once did he call before, only once did he confess love before, his final choice was never made, Sol will see to stopping that again if he can. Now it is more important than ever we keep Endymion safe.”
“How soon my Lord?”
“Soon, he is twelve now, he is becoming a youth. The dreams will start soon now that he has made his choice. Even I cannot say when or even if he will call. I can only wait as you now. Mother is keeping this shrouded from both Sol and I.”
“I will watch him, he is my personal acolyte. He will be with only me from here on out. I will protect him my lord.”
“I know little Gallus. Thank you.”
“I live to serve you Lord Mane.” Gallus said as he returned to his quarters. His new acolyte tucked into his alcove asleep. White blond hair, splayed across the pillow, and a contented smile on young lips.
“Sleep well young one. Your life is now changing. For your sake and his, I pray you remember soon.” Gallus said as he crawled into his own bed for the night.