Nøkken : The Water Spirit
Sefa never went down to the pond again, and from that moment on she never used the dam to irrigate her fields. Haki, after hearing what his mother had seen, obeyed her wishes and never again went near the water where the evil creature lived. The Nøkken never called to either of them again. He knew that he had done enough damage in their lives and wished to cause them no more pain.
Haki cut the Bäckahäst, that Åndeløs had named Vandykker, loose and chased it as far away from the Lillebekken farm as he possibly could. His mother feared that it would infect another brook nearby, but she did not know what else to do. Sefa did not want that monster in her barn, for she already had one in her pond.
Then one winter, the Nøkken did not see Sefa for days on end. He waited and waited, but she never appeared outside of the farmhouse. The Nøkken feared for the health of his human partner, for she had been looking frail as of late. Sefa had aged greatly, and she now walked only with the help of a stick. Her once beautiful golden hair, which she had often braided around her head, had turned gray and her face had become wrinkled like the ripples on his pond on a windy day. And yet he still loved her as much as ever.
On a cool early spring morning the Nøkken surfaced when he heard hammering coming from the barn. With his glowing eyes he scanned the barnyard and noticed that dirt had been piled up on the side of the farmhouse where Sefa's father, mother, and first husband Vigarr were buried. A short while later he watched nervously as Haki went into the house. A few moments later he saw her son emerge carrying his mother in his arms. To his keen eyes Sefa did not appear to be moving.
The Nøkken watched in stunned horror as Haki carefully placed his mother into a wooden box next to the pile of dirt. Her son then walked back to the barn, only to return moments later with an odd shaped piece of wood. As his body shook uncontrollably from grief and shock, he saw Haki kiss his mother, and then cover the box with the wood. Slowly her son hammered in each nail to seal the coffin shut. Each time Haki pounded on a nail he drove each one deeper into the Nøkken's heart.
When he had finished sealing the coffin Haki carefully lowered the box into the hole next to the pile of dirt. The Water Spirit was able to keep his emotions under control until Haki began to cover the grave with soil. It was then that the shock wore off, and the finality of what had actually happened sunk in. The Nøkken could hold in his sorrow no longer, and he began to wail and moan in agony.
Haki understood all too well the strange sounds that were coming from the pond, and worked to shovel the dirt into the grave at a furious pace. When Haki finished he quickly put the grave marker in place, and went to the barn to harness his horse to the cart that he had already filled with his belongings. Before leaving Haki stopped at the grave and said one last farewell to his mother, father, and grandparents. He would never return to Lillebekken.
The Nøkken looked on as Haki disappeared into the distance before emerging from the pond. This time he did not bother to change into human form, for there was no one around to fool. As he approached the newly made grave he began to shake uncontrollably. The creature that was once known as Åndeløs dropped to his knees and placed the water lilies he had picked from the pond onto Sefa's grave. Then he did something that no Nøkken had ever done before. He began to cry. His tears were not salty as Sefa's had been all those years ago, but were the same as the fresh water from the pond.
" I will always love you Sefa ! " the Nøkken whispered.
It was then that the Nøkken realized that forever was a very long time !
- The End
- Next Story : The Fire Dragon's Quest ( Part Three Of The Ítreksjóð Trilogy )
- Glenn Bergen, ( Ravensheart ), © Copyright, 2017.