The Story of Atlanticus and Lilliana
In the time before magic was forgotten and the world was split in two, the fairies ruled all that was dry and the mermaids ruled all that was blue. There was only one Unbreakable Law… the two worlds may never collide.
Lilliana was a flower nymph and spent her days in the fields sculpting new blooms. Her blooms were so exquisite that the sight of them would take your breath away! Scatterings of pinks and hues of peach, her flowers where legendary! Fairies would come from all over the Kingdom to see them. They had even caught the eye of Hawthorn, Lord of the High Council, who swore this nymph would be his.
Lilliana often worked late into the evenings as she drew inspiration from the colours of the setting sun. But one fateful day while creating a new rose she lost track of time and the sun had set before she realised it. She was a little afraid by the darkness setting in, so she decided to take the shorter path that led her past the great blue. She often wondered why something so glorious was forbidden to them, but would never dare to question the High Council.
As she walked on the path, something glimmered to her right. She looked but could not see anything. But then out the corner of her eye she saw the glimmer again. She left the path and walked towards the water. She knew if she was caught she would be punished, but she had to know what was there.
Lying in the shallow water, she saw him. Iridescent blues and greens flickering in the fresh moonlight. Her breath caught in her throat and her heart raced. He was quite simply dazzling! But this creature surely needed her help, so she quickly made her way into the water. Atlanticus lay bleeding in the water, unable to gather his strength to swim away. He had cut his legs on the coral by swimming too close to the forbidden dry land. Now, as he heard footsteps approaching, he tried again to move away but his legs were cut too badly. He felt doomed and closed his eyes in trepidation of what was approaching.
“Let me help you,” her gentle voice sang to his soul. Surely nothing evil could have a voice like that. Atlanticus opened his eyes and as his eyes met hers, the one Unbreakable Law was broken! Not only had the worlds collided, but so too had their hearts!
Lilliana quickly spun petals to act as bandages for Atlanticus and her magic in the petals healed him. But he did not swim away; he could not swim away! This beautiful creature had captured his heart and with her was where he wanted to stay! They spoke of their lives and shared their dreams, and before either realised it the orange glow of the sun slowly began to appear on the horizon.
Shocked and fearing they would be discovered, Lilliana begged Atlanticus to swim away and swore she would met him again that evening. Reluctantly he left but stayed close enough to shore to watch his love leave.
Lilliana hurried back to the fields to begin her day. But today was different! Lilliana was in love with Atlanticus, and so her flowers were even more breathtakingly beautiful than before! The other fairies noted that she must be in love, as only true love could create flowers like these!
News of Lilliana’s beautiful new flowers spread quickly, and soon word filtered down to Hawthorn and the other members of the High Council. The members of the High Council knew of Hawthorn’s intentions towards Lilliana, and assuming the new love Lilliana had was for Hawthorn, they began congratulating him. This, of course, did not make Hawthorn happy. The fact that Lilliana was in love with someone else totally infuriated him, and he swore to find and kill this stealer of Lilliana’s affections.
That evening as the sun began to set, Lilliana was eager to see her love again. She happily made her way to the path by the great blue, not knowing that Hawthorn followed closely behind her. He watched as she went off the path and made her way to the water’s edge. And then he saw Atlanticus! Seeing the lovers entwined in each other’s arms, Hawthorn flew into a violent rage and ran towards them, shrieking at the top of his voice, “You chose this… this creature over me!”
Lilliana screamed in horror as Hawthorn descended on them. She begged Hawthorn for mercy, begged him to let them go. But Hawthorn was too hurt to forgive, too furious and too humiliated to let them ago. Again Lilliana pleaded with him. Desperately she even offered her body to him, if he would only let Atlanticus go.
“NEVER! For breaking the Unbreakable Law, this wretched creature MUST DIE!” But as the words left his lips and he summoned the magic to kill Atlanticus, the water rose up and the King of the Great Blue appeared. “You shall not kill what is mine to rule over, or I shall rise up and flood all that is yours!”
Hawthorn recoiled in fear, but still protested. After all, they had broken the Unbreakable Law! The King of the Great Blue did not disagree with him on that part, but had a milder punishment in mind. Tragically, that punishment would separate Atlanticus and Lilliana forever.
“Take your fairy and give her wings, for if those wings get wet the fairy shall die,” suggested the King of the Great Blue.
“What about your abhorrent creation, what punishment for him?” Hawthorn sneered.
“I shall take away his legs and give him the tail of a marlin. Never again will he be able to be on dry land, lest he shall die,” answered the King of the Great Blue with sternness in his voice.
The horrified lovers protested desperately, but it was too late. Hawthorn and the King of the Great Blue had settled on the punishment. Then the two powerful rulers ceremoniously raised their hands and the spells were instantly cast!
Immediately Atlanticus fell to the ground and began gasping for breath, and his tail was flopping on the ground. Then the King of the Great Blue sent large waves to the shore that lifted up Atlanticus and returned him to the water. With tears in his eyes, Atlanticus stretched out his hands toward Lilliana but he was too far away to reach his love. Seeing this, Lilliana’s heart began to break because she could not live without his love. She ran towards the water hoping to reach him, but it was not to be. Her enchanted wings flew her up and away as soon as her foot touched the water’s edge and she was returned to the dry land.
“Let them be a lesson to others!” decreed the King of the Great Blue as he disappeared into the watery depths, dragging Atlanticus with him. Devastated, Lilliana lay on the shore sobbing uncontrollably while Hawthorn gloated at all the hurt he had caused. Feeling victorious and with great satisfaction, he left Lilliana there, her heart torn in pieces.
Lilliana lay there crying for a very long time. She had to have Atlanticus. She needed his love and could not live without him. What could she do? She had heard stories of a great witch who lived in the forest to the North. This witch’s magic was so great that it was said she could break any spell. Upon remembering this, Lilliana stopped crying, flew up in the air and headed north to find this great witch.
She searched high and low asking all manner of forest folk if they knew where this witch was. Hours fell into days and days into weeks; still she searched. And then one night as she slept a voice came to her, “Hear you’ve been looking for me!” Lilliana woke up immediately and there before her stood the witch. Lilliana told the witch her sad tale and begged for her help.
With a little twinkle in her eye the witch said, “I cannot break magic that powerful, but I can alter it… for a price! I will give you a solution, but only if you give me your ability to spin flowers. Understand that never again will you spin petals the way you do now. Without a second thought Lilliana agreed, whereupon the witch gave her an enchanted pattern. “A pattern! A pattern! What am I to do with a pattern?” said Lilliana in bewilderment.
“You use it to make yourself a blanket, silly girl, and so must he! You spin yarn instead of petals and he must use the blue of the sea. When your blankets are done and your love still strong, wrap yourselves tight and all spells are undone,” said the witch, and then she disappeared!
Not fully sure of what blankets could do to help their plight, Lilliana set out again for her home and her love. He had been faithfully coming to the water’s edge every night hoping for her return. That night after arriving home she wrote Atlanticus a note explaining what he needed to do to make his blanket using the blue of the sea. She placed the note in a bottle, flew out above the water, and dropped the bottle into the great blue. As soon as the bottle hit the water, Atlanticus appeared. He shouted to her of his love and how he had missed her. He retrieved the bottle, opened it and read the message.
Satisfied that Atlanticus now had the instructions, Lilliana sat on the shore and spun her yarn. And like her most beautiful flowers before, her yarn was the most beautiful yarn you had ever seen. She spun and spun until she had enough yarn to make her blanket.
Atlanticus spun too, spinning till he had yarn of green and blue. They both worked through the night and all the next day until finally their blankets were done. In excited anticipation they each wrapped themselves in the blankets they had made, but nothing happened! Lilliana cried out in anguish, and with tears welling in her eyes she threw her blanket into the water. It floated out on the gentle current to Atlanticus, who grabbed it. As soon as he touched it, he immediately felt it! Her love was there! He let go of his blanket and wrapped himself in hers. As he did so, he closed his eyes and felt Lilliana’s love holding him, felt her warmth enfolding him.
Lilliana watched from the shore as Atlanticus’s blanket slowly floated towards her. She picked it up as it settled on the dry shore. Instantaneously she felt it! His love! She was touching his love! So she wrapped the blanket around her, closed her eyes, and was enveloped in his love! Experiencing their love once again, they opened their eyes and now suddenly they were in each other’s arms. Their enchanted blankets held them in their own universe where no magic could ever tear them apart. They stayed together for hours until at last they had to leave. They dare not risk others coming in search of them and discovering their secret.
And so during their days they went on with their normal lives. Lilliana, no longer able to make her beautiful blooms, was content making daisies. But every evening when the sun began to set she hurried home where she would be joined by her love. Every night they would wrap themselves in their enchanted blankets to be magically moved into their enchanted universe of love.
They lived out their days like this until they were old and grey. And then one night as they wrapped themselves in their blankets, they disappeared into their own universe, never to be seen again. When others went looking for them, all they found were two old and worn blankets.
Legend has it that if you find Lilliana’s or Atlanticus’s pattern and make a blanket for yourself, you will feel a part of their love in that blanket, for their magic and love has never died.
Written by : Lindsay Cadenhead