An of the Dreaming Seas

The following is some early writing from Phantammeron Book Two by author Mitchell Stokely. In this writing sample I go into depths about An, the sleeping Goddess of the seas. She rests at the bottom of the Dreaming Seas that encircle the Forest of Twilight in the heaven of the Fay called Phantaia. The concept is that she dreams at the bottom of the sea and from her dreams are the lives and fates of the living first conceived and set in motion.

“Beneath the crashing waves of the Dreaming Seas, within its wide watery bosom, had lain since Time immemorial, a sleeping daughter-of-the-sea named An.

This secretive child-of-the-waves the swaying seas had long ago held within its dreary depths. For An entrapped in endless dreams, enwrapped by her mother’s loving tides, had held close to her heart the faces of those children who through this world would someday pass. For she had been granted the gift of divine omnipotence, or far-seeing, envisioning by her inner eye the woeful fates of those that would come to live and die in the wilderness called Phantaia that now lay beyond her sea’s troubled shore.

Visions of those children had long flashed before her in a restless sleep. For in her dreaming mind had walked many solemn spirits traveling in great rows through Time’s endless hallways, passing through Death’s dark doorways and beyond, such that in her endless slumber it seemed a thousand ages had passed.

Echos of their sweet voices caressed the shadowed corridors of her mind, playing concordant songs of happy and loving lives as they plodded on. An then hearkened to their laughter and their mourning as their countless tiny feet walked on through lives generously lived and lost. Yet strangely that ocean-child could not recognize the face nor form of her own.

More pronounced their fates had seemed to her with each passing ghost, appearing then disappearing in her mind within the larger host, then strangely born again into this world more beautiful than before, until their final and tragic fall. Lit from afar as by a searchlight, their living lights then faded once more, never to appear again in any living memory or mind but hers.

Yet in her shadowed dreams born of vast fates still unknown, An reached out to each of them with her compassionate arms, desiring only to comfort and embrace them all in the midst of their tragic ends, these sad children of her mind’s mirrored eye. But devoured by her dream’s phantom mists, they lasted but a moment more as their dying lights traveled down dream’s wending, misty corridor.

For the desires of dreams that pass before the longing eye are there but to lead us mercilessly on some fruitless path through the hollows of our lives, like a fleeing will-o-wisp we long to grasp but never will, whose tempting lights dance just beyond the farthest hill.

An then with great wisdom wrapped her arms about herself, holding her dreams close to her, knowing that which touched her sleeping heart would but melt away with the waking light of some cruel and callous dawning day. For An through dreams had conceived what her heart desired most, to give life to the children she had seen but as fading ghosts.

But she would remain cursed to keep the heroic host in her sleeping mind bestilled, knowing she would never get to touch their loving faces, nor their children’s children, a pained desire left forever after unfulfilled. And so she felt great sorrow at what she had foreseen, and what would come to pass, crying for them in her sepulcher of glass, as she slept beneath the dark and rolling waves unseen.”

– Mitchell Stokely



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