The day for Fiáin’s Surrender drew closer. When she had first received the Writ from the men of Cernunnos she had been afraid, of course. The fear at such a thing only ever heard of was only natural, but deep within her something also stirred with excitement at the thought. This was probably part of the reason for the Writ and the Surrender demanded therein, although how Cernunnos had known was beyond her. Her parents had tried so very hard to shield her, but wildness is a hard quality to shelter and the kinsfolk could just tell, it seemed.
It wasn’t like she had ever been open about her thoughts. Oh God, was that what he was to draw from her? Her wildness was evident there, she knew, and her thoughts were dark. She had kept those things from everyone though, as soon as she knew that those feelings were forbidden. She had quietly indulged at times, but only ever when alone and when her need was so great that she could not ignore it. Initially Fiáin had thought that the other girls must share these sorts of desires but she had come to understand that they did not.
Perhaps that was in some way why part of her wanted the Surrender. The thought of Cernunnos was a fearful one indeed. What girl would not be afraid of their antlered king, but there was also a comfort in knowing that she could let go and give herself. A reassurance in knowing that he would break her and make her pure again. So even though her impure thoughts were ones she tried to keep to herself, there were other outward signs of her wildness. It was written in her nature from the beginning and she was wilful, adventurous in ways that the others were not. Even her hair, and unruly red, was wild and untameable.
The day before the Surrender, Fiáin received the red robe that she was to wear. Her family were quiet as they sat down to eat that night and although what would happen was written in the lore, they talked little of it. The villages that made up the kingdom of Cernunnos were many, and it the fact that she had been Summoned was to bring prosperity and favour to their small Clachan. It was an honour to be taken in this way by such the Stag God. As the ate their final meal together, the silk of her robe felt softer on her skin that any cloth she had worn before, and it seemed to caress her in a way which only ignited the fire inside her.
The following day Fiáin bade farewell to her family and was escorted by the guards to the Dun. She was led then to a room where she was to wait for Cernunnos himself. She had heard about him though never seen him before and she knelt quietly as one would do for one’s King. She wondered in awe as she waited for this God, half man, half stag, to surrender her wildness to him. Soon the door opened and he stood there before her. Fiáin had not expected one so youthful looking and fair of face. The splendour of his antlers had not been given justice and neither had his strong physique.
Cernunnos walked towards Fiáin and crouched down in front of her so that their eyes were locked. He didn’t speak, but she knew that in that moment he could see everything that she had tried to hide for so long. It seemed to rise up within her as if she offered it to him without ever having received a request.
“I see your need, young Fiáin, but try not to be afraid. It will be ok. I know that you will fight me, for that is in your nature, but believe me, you will surrender. I will have to hurt you to break you and I need you to take that for me. Do you understand?”
“Yes, my Lord,” Fiáin whispered.
“It will be hard for you to bend your will to mine,” Cernunnos continued, “but there will be such beauty and freedom in yielding to me. You will become mine, you see. What I ask you to give is everything, but I will give you everything in return. An everything such as you never knew before and an everything such as most will never know. This is your Surrender, Fiáin. This will change you and it will change your path, so I ask you now, do you enter into this contract willingly?”
Fiáin was shocked. She had never know that there would be a choice. She had thought that she was being taken and it was outwith her own control. But she saw now. This was something that she was destined to do and to be. Although he offered a choice, really there was none for this was written in the very fragment of her being and had been so since she entered this world. She was a daughter of the Stag and this was her destiny.
“Yes, my Lord.” Fiáin said again.
Cernunnos, (Celtic: “Horned One”) in Celtic religion, an archaic and powerful deity, widely worshipped as the “lord of wild things.” Cernunnos may have had a variety of names in different parts of the Celtic world, but his attributes were generally consistent. He wore stag antlers and was sometimes accompanied by a stag and by a sacred ram-horned serpent that was also a deity in its own right. He wore and sometimes also held a torque, the sacred neck ornament of Celtic gods and heroes. Britannica
If you have enjoyed this then you might like to read some of my other twisted myths and legends:
- Destiny and The Brownie – Twisted Myths and Legends
- Can you see me?
- The Capture of Astrid
- Protect me and set me free
- Desire of the dark: crossing the boundary
- His Wild Woman
The prompt for Wicked Wednesday is Spirit Animal. I did a quiz and my spirit animal came out as being a deer. I have written about being a deer woman before and so this time wanted to try something a little different. To read pieces about other spirit animals please hit the badge and follow the link.