The Ballad of the Sun and Moon is considered to be the seminal work of an ancient minstrel known only by his title, Maestro. He is believed to have served under the Elven Emperor Minspero, approximately three thousand years after the death of Geb. The ballad is still often performed today, in royal courts throughout the world.
The Ballad of the Sun and Moon is divided into four parts, which remains the classic form for most musical entertainment (not to be confused with musical ambience) provided for royal courts.
Part One: The Cantata Edit
Princess Asainna is ordered by her father, the King of the Sun, to take a husband, as he would like to know that the family will have an heir before he steps down from the throne. Asainna balks, as she is secretly in love with her slave, Samoq. Her father gives her three days to choose a husband, or he will give her an heir himself. That night, she makes a plaintive cry to the stars, and the Queen of Night appears, offering Asainna freedom from her father, and to spend 'the rest of her nights' with Samoq, if only Asainna will complete a great ritual for her. She gives Asainna an enchanted dagger, and tells her three offerings she must make on the night of the new moon, two nights hence.
Part Two: The Adagio Edit
Asainna spends the next day being bombarded by marriage proposals. She craftily asks each man to bring her 'an item specific to their skills' to prove their devotion, which happen to be the items the Queen of Night asked for before. This portion often varies from Varigal to Varigal, as they will write in whatever adventures they like for the hapless suitors.
After the suitors return with the gifts, the King of the Sun makes a grand showing of devotion to Asainna, by having all the most 'valuable' slaves of the palace executed, including Samoq. Asainna tries to stop the executions, but her father, realising that her love for Samoq is what has kept her from taking a husband, executes Samoq himself, and forces her to drink his blood, so she can 'taste the bitterness of her wasted years'. Asainna flees to her room, planning to kill herself with the dagger.
Part Three: The Minuet Edit
Asainna sits at her window, weeping as the slaves' bodies are burned in the distance. She sings to the night of having lost her love, apologizes to the Queen of Night for failing to perform the ritual, and then goes to kill herself with the enchanted dagger. The Queen of Night appears, and asks her why she weeps. Asainna tells her of Samoq's death, and being forced to shame herself publically by drinking his blood. The Queen of Night comforts her, and tells her that "Death is no detriment to Devotion", and convinces her to continue with the ritual.
The next night, the King of the Sun holds a grand ball, and Asainna attends, with the three offerings, and the dagger, hidden in her dress. She keeps attempting to slip away to perform the ritual, but her father draws her back in, parading her in front of the guests and telling her to choose a husband. Over the course of the night it is revealed that the King knew that Asainna loved Samoq long before he gave her the ultimatum, and that he made her drink his blood publically so that all other suitors would reject her, so he could keep her for himself. Asainna flies into a rage, and stabs her father with the enchanted dagger.
Part Four: The Rondo Edit
The King falls, and the Queen of Night appears. She thanks Asainna for making an even greater sacrifice than those originally planned, for killing her father, who's life was what maintained immortality for the elves. Almost immediately, the eldest elves in the room began collapsing and dying off, cursing her with their last breaths. Asainna asks the Queen of Night about Samoq, as she fulfilled her part of the bargain. The Queen replies "Death is no detriment to Devotion, nor is Time." She curses Asainna with vampirism, so that she will be burned by 'the face of her father', be forced to 'drink the blood of those she loves', and live till the end of time.
Variations and Theories Edit
Some parts of the Ballad are often subject to variation, most notably the three offerings and the adventures required to obtain them. Originally, the items were a lamp, a fleam and bloodstick, and an hourglass, foreshadowing later events of the story, but now they can be nearly anything, so long as it's a 'magical' or 'artifact' version of the item, and the prince in question must go on a quest to retrieve it.
It is often theorized that either the Queen of Night or Asainna herself is actually Akrasia, the Goddess of Time. Much of the symbolism used for the Queen of Night (veils, stars, darkness) are also used in Akrasian temples and art. It should be noted, however, that Akrasia is rarely depicted as malevolent, like the Queen of Night. The opposing theory, that Asainna is Akrasia, is an attempt to explain where, exactly, Akrasia came from, as her birth and exitence were not recorded before the death of Geb.