In the wake of birth and betrayal, Ushna takes the God Ashur to Tristan in a last desperate bid to save Tristan’s life—and is helpless to do anything but watch as Ashur instead buries him in a grave. Though he has no desire to go on living, having now lost Brian and Tristan, Ushna has no choice. Not only do their children need him, the mysterious Simurgh has come out of hiding and forces him to continue on—for there is much to do and little time to do it, especially with treachery and danger closing in on them from every side.
Lexi stops by today to talk about one of the gods and some of the mythology surrounding him. It is completely fascinating and gives you a little bit of an idea on how it applies to Lexi’s series. She talks about more of the gods and goddesses throughout the blog tour so you should definitely check out the other stops. Read and enjoy!
One of the most popular gods that was adopted throughout Mesopotamia, finding information on Enki was the easiest of all the Sumerian gods I researched. There were a large number of myths attached to him and he was like the god rockstar, even among the other gods. He had a consort but he slept around, a lot. Eventually that got him pregnant with his own seed and his brother Enlil begged for mercy on his behalf to the Goddess Ki. Enki wasn’t the only example of male pregnancy in Sumerian mythology. The God Anu impregnated someone when he was fleeing to the heaven of the gods and his genitals were bitten off. The biter gave birth to three lesser gods. Ha!
Enki was Tiamat’s favorite grandson. He was the person the gods went to get something done. When Gilgamesh was unruly enough the people cried out to the gods for help, Enki created Enkidu to balance Gilgamesh. When Inanna was stuck in the Irkalla, the Sumerian underworld, Enki was asked to speak to his twin sister Ereshkigal to plead for Inanna’s return. When the gods became fed up with toiling, they went to Enki to create the humans. As far as I can tell, he was the god most active among the humans, Adapa being his most beloved sage. He liked them so much he shared the Me with them, helping them to raise civilizations.
As the patron god of the city of Eridu, Enki was known as the god of gasam (crafts, The Me <– very important), water, creation, intelligence. His influence stretched from southern Iraq to the Levantine coast and was featured in the earliest cuneiform inscriptions and continued to be prominent until the Hellenistic period. He acquired many titles: Master Shaper of the World, God of Wisdom and Magic, Lord of the Earth, Lord of Sweet Water, Lord of Semen, and Lord of Life.
His temple was called E-Abzu. It was believed that in the subterranean waters under the temple, he put Abzu, the “begetter of the gods”, to sleep (see the Igigi War). Abzu was intent on killing the younger gods because of the chaos they created but Enki helped Abzu to find peace by putting him in the deep sleep in the Kur. There Enki rested in the waters and absorbed the creation powers of his forefather.
His symbol was a double-helix snake, or the Caduceus. He was often shown with the horned crown of divinity and dressed in the skin of a carp. In the series, the Council of Five wore the Scared Capes of Scales which represent Enki. Also in the Hall of Shamash, the horned crown of divinity was on the wall in a glass case, and upon the doors is the Caduceus.
Other than the imagery, Enki himself doesn’t play a major part of the Sumeria’s Sons series, his prior actions do have an effect on the plot. How he lost the Me to Inanna to his rescue of her from his twin sister Ereshkigal’s underworld both play into the predicament Tristan and the Lycans find themselves in. But it is also these lessons that the characters from Sumeria’s Sons turn around and use to their benefit. The knowledge of what came before, if used correctly could mean the difference between life or the eradication of the Lycans.
A huge thank you for allowing me to be a guest on the blog today! Throughout the blog tour for Dragon’s Eye, I hope you enjoy the behind the scenes look at the gods and mythos, and how they play a part in Sumeria’s Sons. For a visual representation, please visit my Pinterest page. (https://www.pinterest.com/lexiander1/sumeria-sons-inspirations/) During the tour I discuss the Sumerian pantheon, about who and what the Gods/Goddess are, and how I use them. Make sure you stop by the other blogs to get a complete look at the Gods and Goddess the Lycan’s follow.
Also, Less Than Three Press is running a special sale on Sumeria’s Sons from September 23rd through October 7th (dates inclusive).
I woke staring into the darkness, and for the briefest of moments, I could smell him. Being able to feel Tristan as if he were right in the next room was maddening. And exhausting. If Tristan didn’t return soon, the toll of his absence would wear me down and already people were whispering. I couldn’t explain why we weren’t going back home to the ranch. They indulged me to begin with, believing I needed time for my grief.
Sighing, I sat up, knowing I wouldn’t be able to sleep anymore tonight. Grieving. In part, that wasn’t a lie because I grieved for Tristan’s presence. I breathed even as my chest ached. Since acquiring the albino caduceus adorning my chest, I sensed the direction of Tristan’s location. Thinking back, I also sensed his moods as well, but I’d always believed that came from years of knowing him. Now I wasn’t so sure. Even though I couldn’t point to what direction Tristan could be found, I’d been getting flashes of emotion along with a deep lethargy that wasn’t my own. The need to comfort him rose when unexpected pain flared, but there was nothing I could do. More than once, I wondered if my sanity wasn’t slipping.
Thank you for stopping by and reading!
The God Ashur followed behind me carrying Tristan, whose body was battered and broken. The cry of our newborn pups preceded me. Their birth was supposed to be a wondrous occasion, but through treachery and lies, that was stolen from us. Instead of enjoying the happy moment, I feared Tristan was dying.
There was so much blood. The damage to his body overwhelmed my senses. I was afraid if I didn’t keep my eyes on him, if I turned my back for a second too long, his Flame would slip away. We ran through the cursed caverns that wouldn’t allow me to touch my wolf or feel the song of the earth. Ashur’s harsh commands to hurry spurred me on faster but I had to look behind me, I had to see with my own eyes that Tristan was still with us, still fighting.
The scars… I couldn’t care less but Tristan might. I vowed I would spend the rest of my life showing him how beautiful he was to me—but first we had to get him out into the open.
I glanced back. “Hurry, Ashur.”
The corridor seemed much longer than when we’d come in. Glancing over my shoulder again to ensure Ashur followed closely, my impatience caused a snarl to rumble in my throat. Tristan’s skin was a gray-blue, stark and sickly against Ashur’s rich mahogany tone. With every passing moment, we were losing him.
“Please.” I don’t know if I begged Ashur to go faster or if it was a plea to the Gods to spare Tristan’s life.
When we entered the darkened corridor carved from the bedrock, I heard Tristan sigh. For months, he’d been teaching me how to listen to the Earth and I could practically feel her rush to him. I climbed the stairs, my foot slipping on the wet step in my hurry to get outside.
The open air had never smelled so good, filling my lungs with the scents of life. My wolf stirred, frantic for our mate. I reached to take Tristan from Ashur, but he dodged my grasp, moving off to the side. His low voice had a musical tone as he chanted in a language I didn’t recognize and next to him, a hole formed in the ground.
“What are you doing? You said all we had to do was get him outside!” Why was Ashur not singing the song for healing? I reached again to take Tristan from Ashur’s arms. Tristan was teaching me the complex chant, but Ashur was Tristan’s tutelary. He knew what to ask the Earth for and how. Why was he not begging her to save Tristan’s life? She wouldn’t say no. She’d never say no to Tristan because she adored him.
It took a moment for the haze of my frantic thoughts to subside enough to realize Ashur was talking and then another for me to process the meaning of his words. What did he mean he couldn’t restore Tristan’s health?
With rising alarm, I said, “You’ve been teaching him how to sing to the Earth. Why can’t you do that now?”
Ashur dodged me, laying Tristan in the hole atop the dark loamy soil. Something eased in me seeing Tristan in contact with the ground, although the Earth didn’t rush up to him as I’d expected. She never missed an opportunity to touch him… until now. Instead, I felt power build until my bones ached and the snakes on my chest writhed in discomfort.
Staring down, I searched for the source of the energy, sure that at any moment, whatever it was would show itself. My gaze continued to return to Tristan with his ruined eyed, his torso ravaged and gaping. Never had I seen him so vulnerable, so small, the very sight calling to the caretaker within me.
Tearing my gaze away, I confronted Ashur who was pleading with me. “I teach him the songs but She doesn’t respond to me.”
An ancient sadness shone in Ashur’s visage but I didn’t care. I had trusted him to save Tristan. Never before had I been filled with such useless rage. I didn’t understand what Ashur was saying. Who was he talking about? The Earth? He was the king’s tutelary, so why wouldn’t the Earth answer his call?
Desperation rose up and I barked, “Why the fuck not?”
“Because I took the wrong side in a war, now I’m forever separated from Her.”
What did that have to do with the here and now? What did it matter he’d lost something or someone? My Tristan was dying and all he could do was talk. Ashur’s pleading gaze held mine and I suddenly understood. I glanced back down at Tristan, lying in a bed of fresh dark soil.
“No! You cannot mean to do this. He’s not dead!” I jumped into the hole; Tristan’s single eye stared at me with clarity, despite the state of his body. His chest rose and fell with each labored breath. There was still time. I could save him.
With the strength of the God he was, Ashur wound his arms around my waist and easily hauled me away from Tristan.
I went mad.
I fought, screamed and begged. First Brian and now Tristan. How was I to stay behind? I pleaded with Ashur to allow me to go with Tristan. We’d travelled through the Earth together before, we could do it again. I could sing to the Earth and beg for Her help.
It wasn’t too late.
Then Ashur chanted and the soil covered Tristan, taking him from my sight. I roared with fury, thrashing and clawing at Ashur’s hands. I vowed vengeance for this act of betrayal. Silently, Ashur held me as I beat and wailed upon him, trying to free myself from his steely grasp. He whispered continuously, “I am sorry but this had to be done,” in my ear. Tears of grief stained my cheeks and I hated him all the more because it didn’t have to be like this. He had no right to take Tristan from me.
Lexi has always been an avid reader, and at a young age started reading (secretly) her mother’s romances (the ones she was told not to touch). She was the only teenager she knew of who would be grounded from reading. Later, with a pencil and a note book, she wrote her own stories and shared them with friends because she loved to see their reactions. A Texas transplant, Lexi now kicks her boots up in the Midwest with her Yankee husband and her eighty-pound puppies named after vacuum cleaners.
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