So here’s this thing that I’ve known about forever, but had no opportunity to talk about… until now!
It’s called the First War, and was one of the most culturally significant things to ever happen among the Mythos. Allow Grey to introduce you.
You’re human, so you wouldn’t know anything about the First War.
How can I emphasize the importance of this? All our history and education builds on it, echoes it, until every warp and weave among the Mythos follows its nautilus-spiral to narrow isolation.
Are you familiar with your Japan’s Edo period? In an attempt to preserve its culture and prevent the influence of too much foreign policy and religion, Japan closed its borders and restricted trade. You’re likely aware by now that the people of the Mythos do something similar: to protect ourselves, we stay away from you.
That’s the royal “we,” of course.
So here’s what I was taught about the First War. One day, the Ever-Dying humans joined forces with powerful members of the Mythos in an attempt to take over the entire planet. And of course, since you people multiply like rabbits, even wiping out entire armies failed to stop you. Within a few short years, you’d be back, more numerous than ever and following the lead of some wicked and dangerous fool. With nothing more than time, numbers, and the power of the monster you followed, you humans nearly conquered us all.
This is what I was told. It’s also a lie.
Here’s what Notte told me instead.
The First War is the reason humans have the concept of “gods,” as opposed to one great Creator. Those among the Mythos with a great desire for power tricked humans, took them, enslaved them, conscripted and used them like ammunition, a renewable and inexpensive resource. The end result was entire human cultures willing to sacrifice their own children to these so-called gods, and it was those gods who made war on the rest of us.
It took everything the Seven Peoples of the Earth had to end this takeover, and we suffered for it – the Guardians were decimated, the Sun scattered, the Darkness made weirder and more reclusive than ever. The Dream just left, permanently inhabiting the realm between worlds and so removing themselves from the equation. Even to us, they’re like ghosts.
After it was done, we Fey tightened our borders and retreated. Our leaders were so desperate to maintain isolation that they created the Throne and the Scepter — sentient, powerful instruments that harness the magic of Seelie and Unseelie fey from birth. They choke it off, limit it, preventing us from revealing ourselves or getting any ideas; they funnel our extra magic to our rulers and protectors to keep us safe.
That’s what we’re told.
There’s nothing quite like having the power you yourself generate being sucked out of you, leaving you empty. Forced to find other sources. To scavenge.
According to my teachers, the First War is why no other Peoples of the Earth can be trusted. We especially can’t trust humans, since you never know when they’ll sell themselves to somebody as weapons again. The First War is why the Fey will never allow the seven Peoples to unite again, lest they grow too strong and break the balance of power that gives us peace.
You heard me right. My people think we have the right to police everybody.
Why, yes, it is obviously biased toward Fey being everybody’s keepers! Yes, it does make inter-species discussion rather difficult! Yes, it is the reason all our power is stolen from us at birth, channeled into the Throne and the Scepter, to be released as our benevolent rulers decree. Yes to all of that, and it’s all based on the lie that we poor Fey were victimized, attacked, with no collective way to defend ourselves.
My teachers never said anything about the Fey joining in with the humans, being part of the rebellion, nearly overthrowing the rest of the world. I know now. Notte was there. His version of what happened is messier than I was told, but I believe him. We Fey sold ourselves out, too, following some monster’s shiny song.
It’s an unpopular truth, can you imagine? And you wonder why I don’t like to go home.
Share your thoughts below! I’d love to hear them.