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HOW IT ALL BEGAN...

FORBIDDEN LOVE

Since time immemorial there has been light and darkness, life and death, existing in a beautiful and necessary balance. Each is as important as the other though neither able to co-exist fully. 

It is said that Ulfar always loved Ingrid and she him but the very nature of their beings made it impossible to be together beyond stolen glances in that time when day gives way to night and again when the sun rises to usher in a new day. It was in those moments in which their love grew.

Reaching a breaking point, Ingrid sought out her sister Halfrid, goddess of magic, in request of a magical item that would allow the couple to be together, regardless of the time of day it was. Happy for her sister and the joy she'd found, the goddess presented her with the talisman of Sanddalr. Halfrid instructed her sister to wear this around her neck whenever she was to be with Ulfar. But all magic comes with conditions and this would be no different. Halfrid warned Ingrid that this powerful item would only work for one week every six months. The consequences for disregarding the limit would be dire. Ingrid, desperate and in love, agreed to the terms and accepted her sister's gift. 

CREATION

Ulfar and Igrid enjoyed centuries of life together this way. The months apart were hard but they made the most of their time together. Over the years they managed to have numerous children, each a deity in their own right. The children of the couple possessed the ability to move freely between the realms of dark and light, allowing them to spend equal time with them both. It was hard to not prefer one realm, one parent, over the other. Each held its own charm, its own allure.

They created an island in an expanse of ocean for their time together and named it Gardhr. Their children ran free there and even began to build homes for themselves there as they grew. It was lush and beautiful, a paradise in the very essence of the word. 

As time went on, Ingrid and Ulfar began to look out at that expanse of ocean with a sense of loneliness despite having each other and their family. They created more land, growing Gardhr in leaps and bounds. Rivers flowed and animals were plentiful. Food grew everywhere. Then they created humans, making them capable of light and dark. They would visit their creation, teaching them how to live so that they might grow strong and plentiful. And grow they did.

BETRAYAL

Though the couple didn't know it, there was someone who was watching them in their happiness. Someone who's jealousy had been allowed to quietly fester for centuries. Halfrid, the very one whom had made the relationship possible, now coveted her sister's life. 

Her opportunity to ruin it all presented itself on the final day of Ingrid and Ulfar's time together. Ingrid had already returned to her realm as Ulfar lazed about Gardhr for a few more hours, enjoying the world a bit longer, as was his way. Halfrid appeared almost as soon as Ingrid was gone. She maintained the guise of a simple friendly visit before offering Ulfar a goblet of wine spiked with a potion that would rile his lust and make him susceptible to her advances. 

A few months later, as Halfrid's belly began to grow round with Ulfar's child, she paid a visit to Ingrid. Not knowing that Halfrid had spiked his wine that night, he kept the betrayal from Ingrid. And so it was Halfrid that broke the news to the goddess of the night. At first Ingrid refused to believe her sister, assuming she'd gotten pregnant by a human man. It was close to the time the couple was to meet and Halfrid encouraged Ingrid to confront him then.

CONFRONTATION

When Ingrid arrived on Gardhr, she still refused to believe her sister's claim about the paternity of the child she carried. It wasn't until she saw his face that the first tendrils of doubt began to slip into her mind. Before they were even inside of their home Ingrid knew she had to confront him. And so she did. The look in his eyes told her everything she needed to know even before he confirmed it with his words.

The spirit of the earth split into four as it tried to keep the very world itself from being destroyed beneath Ingrid's rage. The land trembled and split, creating an island separate from other lands. Buildings fell into the depths. Her sadness drew mist around the island, forever enshrouding the land in fog. Even now the land remains difficult to live on and nearly impossible to grow anything on.

Once her fury cooled, Ingrid turned to leave the island for the last time, dropping the talisman that allowed them to be together into the water, losing it and the ability to see Ulfar forever.