Long before humans built great towers of stone and steel, long before they journeyed across the ocean and made all the lands their own, long before they made fire their slave, created machines to carry them into the skies and beyond, the world was a different place.
In those long-forgotten times, the stormy skies were ruled by dragons, the wild forests were governed by elves, the wide fields were inhabited by all kinds of animals you could imagine and the seven unforgiving seas were ruled by fair mermaids and beautiful mermen. It was so long ago that hardly any creature is left alive who could remember and the ones who still are, were already ancient when the first humans saw the light of day.
From far above, the sun looked upon the green and blue earth and admired everything there was. But her fire longed for the cool touch of the moon, who was her lover, and she too, longed for the sun, chasing each other, every day and night throughout eternity.
The sun and the moon admired one of those dangerous seas from far away. There lived a beautiful mermaid, her fin as green as the brightest algae and her hair glowing red like the setting sun. She ruled over many mermaids and mermen, as she protected them with her magical powers, for there were dark creatures in the depths below that came out at night, captured mermaids and mermen and devoured them in the deep. But they were no match for the green scaled mermaid. She could wield the magic of the ocean, controlled the tides and her magic was aided by the knowledge of the stars and the wisdom of the moon. But her true power lay within the fire of the sun. Every day, when the sun was setting, she would grant the mermaid the gift of fire to guide her people through the darkest of nights. They called her Frinja, daughter of the sun. They loved her and crowned her Queen.
But after years of fending off the dark creatures of the sea, Frinja grew tired of the constant danger and thread from below. So, she spoke to her people with courage and fire within her heart. She told them they would do what no other merpeople had dared to do before. They would leave their sea and their home behind and venture beyond their natural habitat, to go walk and explore the land. They would seek out a world that was not dark and deep, perhaps strange and unknown, but they longed for a place where they could start a better life.
With the help of the magic of fire, that was able to change one form into another, their fins transformed into legs and they could seek for more peaceful places. They were afraid as no merman or mermaid had ever gone beyond the sea. Their Queen could have just as well asked them to fly to the moon or to the sun. But they did as their Queen commanded because they loved and trusted her and knew that they could accomplish anything with her. Together they left the shores of their sea and ventured North deep into the unknown. They went through forests, fields, mountains and forests again. They followed their Queen for twelve cycles of the moon.
The moon looked down upon them and could feel the love of the Queen for her people. And the moon admired her, for she herself loved the sun dearly and could sense the fire of the sun within the Queen.
One hopeful morning, they found a lake surrounded by a forest and on one side there was a huge mountain. Frinja saw dragons flying over the lake and the mountain. Huge creatures with shimmering scales, glowing like armour in the light, their wings so big they could cast shadows upon the earth, their proud heads raised high, their horns pointing to the sun. Frinja unleashed her fire over the lake to show them that she too had a power not unlike theirs and waited for the dragons‘ answer. The oldest of them, a giant and wise beast named Monsmagis, descended to speak with the merpeople. His scales were dark green, his eyes amber and kind. Frinja knew that he would understand her and her people’s problems. She told him everything. How the creatures of the dark had devoured her people one by one and how she fought them with fire and magic every night. But the losses were still too great, her heart ached more and more, and she had decided to leave the sea with her people to find safer waters elsewhere. Then, Monsmagis told her that the dragons ruled over the mountains and in their forests lived their prey. But the lake belonged to no one and he decreed that the merpeople shall have it, become lakepeople and they would be under the protection of the dragons. For he could sense the pain and desperation of Frinja and her people and he knew that they would be safe with them. Frinja and her merpeople thanked the dragons and they dived into the lake, breathed in the fresh water and made it their home.
There were no houses within the lake, nothing they could live in, so Frinja raised the fire from within the earth and created palaces of hot stone. She created wonderful houses, works of art, that glittered beneath the surface of the lake. The dragons noticed her talent and were curious. Frinja offered her knowledge of her magic as a thank you for the protection and new home the dragons gave her. And some of the former merpeople, who were now lakepeople, knew much about the magic of the moon, the tales of the stars and the secrets of healing and shared their crafts with the dragons. And the dragons in turn shared their secrets of fire, the ancient tales of mountains and the freedom of the sky with them. Deep friendships grew between the dragons and the lakepeople. Some were so close that when a lakeman or a lakemaid came out of the water and transformed their fins into legs, the dragons allowed them to ride on their backs. Together they rose high into the air, far above the forests, the mountains, the lake, closer to the sun, moon and stars.
Years of prosperity passed by and Frinja finally had time to rest. After a while she became pregnant. She did not know who the father was, but she also did not care, for she was the fairest Queen and most beautiful and strongest of all her people and took as many lovers as she wished. And she loved the idea of raising her child just on her own, so no one could interfere with her love for the child and how she would raise it.
After nine cycles of the moon she gave birth to a little baby boy with brown hair and green eyes just like hers. She looked at her boy, loved him like nothing else in the world, more than her lake kingdom, more than her magic and her fire. He had become her fire. She named him Dantelius, after her own grandfather, who had taught her everything about magic. In the years that followed, she taught Dantelius everything her grandfather had passed on to her and about all the new things she had learned since then. All the discoveries about the land, how the trees whispered to her just like sea plants spoke to her through the current or all the magic and secrets she had learned from the dragons.
Dantelius grew up to become a handsome young lakeman and his fire was just as strong and wild as his mother’s. Many lakemaids fell in love with their prince but he declined all of them. He was only interested in fire and adventures.
One morning he met a young beautiful blue dragon named Seraphirus. He was the grandson of the ancient dragon Monsmagis. They became friends immediately. Together they rose into the sky and explored the forests and mountains around them. They ventured deep into the woods and spoke to the spirits of the trees and other woodland folk. They ventured deep into the caves of the dragons and found sparkling gems and gold within the stone, like frozen rivers. One time they even found dragon eggs, forgotten, turned to stone, deep in the dark. They wondered where their dragon parents might have gone too. Maybe they had died or maybe they had to leave the eggs behind here in the dark.
Late into the night they would sit together by the shore of the lake and told each other stories and legends about the lakepeople, the dragons and the merpeople, Dantelius’s ancestors who lived far away to the South.
After a while, Dantelius was called back to his mother’s underwater palace. The years had made her old and sick. She could sense that her time had come to an end. Her fire was going out. But she was not sad, for she had accomplished so much in her life and had enjoyed every day and every night filled with love, magic and fire. Now she was tired and was ready to sleep. She told her only son that it was time for him to become King of the lakepeople. He should leave his adventures with Seraphirus behind, take responsibility like she did so long ago and protect his people. Full of sorrow and sadness Dantelius wished his mother farewell. She took her last breath and the fire within her green eyes went out.
By the shores of the lake in the shadows of the mountains they burned her cold body. Dragons and lakepeople shed tears of sadness. Even the forest behind them made their sorrow known by mourning through the wind that moved their leaves and branches.
In the weeks to come young lakemaids courted Dantelius, for some of them wanted to become Queen, but none of them seemed good enough for him. The families of the rejected lakemaids, grew hostile towards their young King. They did not know why he had rejected all of them and feared that he simply wanted to keep all the power to himself and did not want to continue the cycle of life and pass on his magic and fire to the coming generation.
At night, after he had argued with the other families and reassured them that he wanted to be a just and wise King in the image of his mother, he was unable to find sleep, so he rode with Seraphirus deep into the night sky. He told his blue friend to fly higher than any other dragon had flown before. Excited, Seraphirus flew towards the stars and together they rose higher and higher. They flew so high that the great landscapes underneath them grew tiny, they passed all the clouds and even they, white and stormy, appeared weak and little. They flew so high that they could see the earth as it was before them. The world was round and circled around the sun. And Dantelius slowly sensed, like the sun rises in the morning, that he would never be happy with a Queen but that this, him and Seraphirus, only the two of them, the blue dragon and the green-eyed King should be together. He told his friend, and Seraphirus said that he too, did not want Dantelius to find a Queen for only the two of them wanted to be together. They confessed their love to each other and were happy that they felt this way.
They glided back down to earth, back to the mountains and the lake. Seraphirus confessed his love for Dantelius to his dragon family and Dantelius confessed his love for Seraphirus to his people. They did not understand their love. How could a dragon and a lakeman ever be together? It was unnatural. It could never be! Disappointed, the lovers met by the shores of the lake and did not know what to do. Then Monsmagis, the great dark green dragon, flew down to them and looked with his kind amber eyes upon the unhappy couple. He told them to fly West, as far as West could go. There, they would find other merpeople, strange merpeople, half men, half kraken. They knew old and ancient magic that could help them. The old dragon would look after the lakepeople and the dragons as long as they were gone.
So, they flew West as far as West could go. They flew over mountains so high they had never seen before, forests so wild they did not dare to descend and then they reached a sea that was so big, they flew day and night and day and night again but there seemed to be no end to it. A blue dragon flying over a blue sea. They realised how tired they had become, how worn out Seraphirus’s wings had become. He feared that he simply could not go any further if they would be flying for much longer. Seraphirus thought that he had led his beloved Dantelius out into an unknown sea and they would both crash into the ocean and die. He wondered if he would still make it back if he turned around now but he knew that there was no going back. But then hungry and tired Dantelius and Seraphirus spotted an island. Seraphirus collected all his strength and excited he and his lover flew towards the island. They followed the setting sun that had been their guidance on their journey, and from far away she admired the courage of the lovers.
Finally, they landed on a beach with sand as white as snow and it was a wondrous place to behold. The animals and the sounds they made were the strangest they had ever heard. Everything seemed colourful and bright. They had never seen any plants like this. It was a different world. And it was here on the shores of this far away island that the lovers met the strangest creatures. Men and women with eyes black as night. In appearance they looked no different from the lakepeople, except where their fins should have been, they had eight tentacles like the kraken in the sea. The tentacles were big and shiny but there was an elegance within their movement that astounded the two travellers. The krakenpeople welcomed the strangers to their jungle island. They recognised their special bond at once and understood their problem. Although together in friendship, love and mind, they could never truly be together, physically parted like the sun and the moon, the two most ancient lovers, always chasing each other.
They guided the lakeman and the dragon to their most skilled enchantress who lived in a big cave on the island. Her tentacles were red and pulsated with magic strong and old. Her name was Philiteja. They explained to her why they had come, and she told them about the order of magic. Only old could become young, only bigger things could become lesser. Fire could only end in water. She said that she could not turn Dantelius into a dragon, for all the dragons were made in the beginning of time by the sun’s fire. But she could turn Seraphirus into a merman, for merfolk were a part of the element of water. It was the essence of change and water was able to transform fire.
Dantelius did not want Seraphirus to give up what he was. He could not change his entire being for him. But the blue dragon did not want to hear it. He told him that everything he was, he was because of him. Their love was so deep, Seraphirus would not want to live a single day without Dantelius. He might have been born a dragon but his true being lived within his heart, within his soul. Seraphirus knew that being a dragon did not fulfil his life anymore but spending a life with Dantelius as a merman, that would mean everything to him. And in that moment the young King realised how much Seraphirus loved him and how much they loved each other and if the situations were reversed, Dantelius knew, he would do the same for Seraphirus. So, they agreed to do the spell that would change their lives.
When the full moon ascended over the island, they went to the bay and Philipeja called upon the tides and the deep magic within her. Then she summoned Dantelius’s and Seraphirus’s fire and the flames engulfed the blue dragon in the water. The flames grew higher and higher, towered up, towards the moon, they glowed golden, red, purple and then white as snow. The fire melted the body of the blue dragon and sculpted a new one. And out of the storming waves and fire appeared a beautiful merman with dark hair and blue eyes. The fire ceased and the waves calmed down. Seraphirus had transformed into a merman with the bluest fin the ocean had ever seen. The moment he reached the white beach his fin turned into legs and Dantelius embraced him for the first time. They thanked the enchantress who thanked them in turn to have been able to stretch and explore the boundaries of magic with her.
In this night, Dantelius and Seraphirus could truly be together as one. And the moon looked down on them in her glittering light and felt happy for them, but she did wonder when she would ever be one with the sun.
In the morning, the lovers woke up in each other’s arms, wished the krakenpeople farewell and they went on their long journey home. They ventured through the sea and met other merpeople and their kingdoms. They were always welcomed, as Dantelius’s mother was famous throughout the world and her son, the new King of the dragonlake, wielded the same fire as she did. And all the merpeople were curious about the mysterious merman with a fin and eyes so sapphire blue they were immediately enchanted by him. But the lovers longed for their mountain lake and never stayed long in the kingdoms of the merpeople.
After twenty cycles of the moon they finally reached the lake with great knowledge and new magic they had learned from all the places they had visited. The old dragon Monsmagis was happy for them but the lakepeople and the other dragons were afraid. They did not understand their newfound magic and they still did not understand their love.
Mistrust grew into fear and anger and the lakepeople imprisoned Dantelius deep within the lake and the dragons threw Seraphirus in a cell high up in the mountains. Both sides agreed on only one thing. Their friendship was over, they had gone too far! Only one race should be allowed to live by the lake and the mountains. There was no place for both of them anymore. They feared and did not understand what Seraphirus had done for Dantelius. The old dragon Monsmagis tried to reason with them but they would not listen, and the younger dragons decided to imprison him as well.
Both sides were ready to fight. The lakepeople rose the deep waters with ancient magic and the dragons unleashed a fire storm over the lake. Lakepeople were fighting with courage and with violence against the mighty and fierce dragons. No one could win. Water and fire and the sky were at war. The lovers could hear their fighting and despaired. They realised they might never see each other again. Separated in their prisons they could sense their love, the magic rising within them and they broke free! Dantelius unleashed a red fire storm from the depth of his heart and ascended high above the fighting. Seraphirus breathed blue fire, hotter than any dragon flame and the blue fire carried him out of his cell high into the air to his lover Dantelius. A gigantic fire storm, flames red and blue, circled like a hurricane above the mountains, the lake and the forest. This blizzard of magic shock the mountains to their core, terrible like lightning and it silenced everything within its reach. Terrified, the lakepeople and the dragons ended their battle and looked up into the sky. Both lovers spoke to them with one voice that they had done nothing wrong but had only loved each other and had explored magic beyond. A magic, a love the lakepeople and dragons could never have dared dream about. They had planned to share their knowledge with all of them, but they did not want to listen. They were given one last chance, to accept them as King and King over lake, forest and mountains or they would rain fire upon them until everything they had shared before would be turned to ashes. For this was the anger the dragons and the lakepeople had created, inspired by their fear. And all the lakepeople and all the dragons bowed to their new King and King. The firestorm ceased, Monsmagis was freed and the lakepeople and the dragons started to heal and to understand.
Their new kingdom became the richest in knowledge of the wonders of magic the moon and the sun had ever shone down upon. King Dantelius and King Seraphirus ruled just and wise over all their subjects. Everyone was equal and could love and live freely.
After a long time both Kings grew old. They wondered what would happen after their deaths because they had no heir. Dantelius fell ill and like his mother he knew that he had little time left in this world. Seraphirus could not bear the thought to be without his lover. So he started thinking and came up with an idea that would unite them forever and continue their legacy. Deep in a dragon cave, Seraphirus and Dantelius had visited so long ago, he found a fossilised dragon egg that had never hatched, and the years had turned it into stone. He carried the egg to his dying lover and told him to unleash his red fire, his essence of life and let it flow into the dragon egg. Seraphirus would do the same with his blue fire. Their fires would live on forever within the stone egg.
They created their final union under the watchful eye of the moon who wondered again when she would finally be allowed to touch the sun’s fire.
King Dantelius and King Seraphirus unleashed their magic, their love and their life essence and let it flow into the egg. And so, red and blue turned one within the stone and the two Kings left this world. The dragons and the lakepeople mourned for them and burned their bodies by the shores of the lake. Then they carried the stone egg to the foot of the mountain where it should rest for eternity between mountain and lake. Suddenly, the earth underneath the egg trembled and it broke in two! Out of it hatched a little baby girl with blue eyes like Seraphirus’s and brown hair like Dantelius’s. The lakepeople and the dragons could sense the fire within her which was the same as Frinja’s, Dantelius’s and Seraphirus’s! When the baby girl stepped into the water her legs turned into a blue and red scaled fin. They all knew that she was their Princess, the daughter of King Dantelius and King Seraphirus and granddaughter of Queen Frinja.
The dragons and the lakepeople decided that the Princess, they named her Frinja the Second, would live one year with the lakepeople and one year with the dragons and so on, until she would come of age and become their Queen.
And so, as the years passed and every day and every night, sun and moon looked upon the double blessed child, they could see within the girl’s heart lived the fires of her parents, the lakeman and the dragon. Both lovers in the sky knew that the love between Dantelius and Seraphirus was complete and they took hope from that.