The Elders stand in a semi-circle within the sanctuary. The High Priestess and Shaman stand on either side of the portal and the Summoner in front of it. A storm is brewing in the north, for it is the sky gods who prepare the trials to come for the young initiate warrior. The air is charged with a ferocious energy, it makes the skin tingle with electricity and the heart race with anticipation. The great forest shivers, knowing what is to come. The drums beat out a rhythm that is hypnotic and ancient, the melody of which has come down from the ancestors beyond the stars. It sings of knowledge that is beyond reach of mortals in their unprepared state. ‘Seek, Search’ it chants. Who shall heed this message? Lightning illuminates the gathering for an instance, striking the torch above the portal. It leaps into life as the salamanders gather in their hundreds.
Soon the tempo changes as the drums quieten, even the storm seems to hold its breath. All three chant in unison as the young initiate warrior processes through the sacred avenue towards the portal. Her path is laden with rose petals:
She approaches, full of the promise of life and joy. Child of Heaven and Earth, Gift of the Gods. Let us honour her journey, from a place of hopes and dreams, towards a future yet to unfold. It is a road shadowed and filled with uncertainty. Much trial and tribulation shall she face but triumph she must.
Come forward Child, Come forward on the rose laden path. May it be a reflection of the being yet to emerge. May you always walk in Beauty and Love. May you always be pure in heart and intent, for that is the way of all spiritual beings.
We offer this precious flower. Blood red rose, symbol most ancient embodying sacrifice and wisdom. Much more we cannot reveal, for that is your task in the journey ahead. Beloved Child, many challenges shall confront you on your life’s path.
Face them with strength, courage and faith. Know that you have the power of the Universe at your call. You shall not be alone, for the blessings of the Ancient Ones and our Ancestors go with you unto eternity.
Hear me all who are gathered here, I ask for your silence. She approaches, full of the promise of life and joy. Child of Heaven and of Earth, Gift of the Gods. Let us honour her journey, from a place of hopes and dreams, towards a future yet to unfold.
Their chant ceases and silence reigns, even the sky gods seek sanctuary in silence. The young woman faces this first important trial in her life. There is no certainty that she will survive this ordeal. The tattoo on her forehead blazes incandescently. An eight pointed star, being the mark of her clan, the Winged Ones. A veil covers most of her face, revealing dark eyes, clear and unafraid. They anoint her with rose oil, she closes her eyes and breathes in its scent. Its perfume spreads through her blood, infusing it with a power that cannot be measured. She feels the pulse of the earth move through her in waves. They hand her a staff with a moldavite at its tip. A gift from the gods and as such most precious. It carries the voices of the Ancient Ones within it. It will be her ally for all life and the journey beyond the veils thereafter.
The young initiate opens her eyes; the light of the heavens is reflected within their depths. She drinks of the sacred potion, now prepared for the trial to come. They will never see her again for that is certain, for she will begin the journey back to the realm of the Ancestors beyond the stars. She holds the staff aloft and then chaos breaks loose. Water pours from the heavens and lightning strikes the great forest. The Elders gather round the little warrior protectively and escort her to the edge of the sacred precinct. The wings on her back slowly unfurl and stretch out fully, smoke laced with gold. Her dark eyes now reflect gold in their depths. She pauses and then races with inhuman speed through the thickly forested land, the aim being to reach caves in the distant mountains. Therein lie many mysterious rituals to undergo before full transformation can take place. The sky gods reign terror on the not-human child and send dangers aplenty. They are struck down with ease but she does not linger to revel in her triumph. That is not the way of her clan.
The goal reaches nearer, the miles speed by within the blink of an eye. Yet more obstacles approach, the unending swamp of the northern lands. Another test that must be passed. Her wings are untested but used they must be. They stretch out and beat slowly, creating whirlpools. The swamp moves as if alive. Strange beings lurk beneath its dark pools. Finally she rises, in time it seems as something terrible and hateful rises from the pool beneath her. Freedom at last from the restrictions of earth. She races through the air, the sylphs guiding and protecting their charge. The caves are within reach. Her feet land on sold ground. A moment’s hesitation before the portal is entered. She emerges into a huge cavern, more like a temple. At its centre stands, stands something beyond comprehension, a dream dreamt of forever. It is perfection itself, an enigma sought by many but rarely found. Ageless and beautiful is he, resplendent in white, star blazing on his forehead. From his neck hangs the symbol of his being, a silver Tau cross encircled by a serpent. His presence seems to fill this great temple within the mountains. Light pierces the darkness. Lux anglicae.