#NaNoWriMo : Frewyn's Seamhair
Halloween in Frewyn takes a more somber character than it does here. After all the trick-or-treating and all the candy-eating is done, many do to honour and feast in the name of their departed. I'm working on rewrites for "From Frewyn to Sanhedhran", book two in the series. There are a few chapters devoted to the holiday since its one of Frewyn's most important. Here is a small piece from one of those chapters:
Services at the Church were let out, the last of the mulled cider was dolled, and now the holiday of Seamhair could take its more serious hue. Whilst chocolates and treats were being divided amongst the children in the square, those who felt equal to performing the more requisite duties of the day went to visit the memorials erected in honour of those whose friends and family had passed into the otherworld. Trinkets and remembrance of the deceased were got, shawls and veils to screen the faces of those who felt all the somberness that such a night could produce were wrapped about shoulders and faces, and soon parents and children alike were making the reverential pilgrimage to their places of respect. Those whose loved ones had been burned at the Church pyre congregated at the Churchyard in quest of the happy relief one receives through the prayer and the aspiration of hoping that their friends and family crossed over safely; those who had their dead spread across Frewyn’s verdant planes returned to them to speak their piece and have their wishes carried to otherworld by way of the wind just as those who spread them at sea would have them conveyed by way of the rushes; and those who had lost their parents and children due to the war assembled in the square, bearing their trinkets in hand, to give their reports of the year, hope their loved ones were well, and pray for a visitation from them that evening. Many who had participated in honouring and remembering their departed often spoke of being permitted entrance into the otherworld on Seamhair night: feasts and gatherings of old friends and family were often had in dreams, and whether the Frewyn belief of the dead speaking to the living through the thin veil of sleep and wakefulness were true must be left to be conjectured. Many who had only a mild belief in the Gods did feel that the familiarity and warm conveyed by their evening visitors were signs enough of the veracity of their visitation, those who had a firm belief in their religion were convinced of practice, and even those who were determined to think that the Gods had abandoned their children after their ascension to the stars would believe that the visits were true if only to find some comfort and relief from the misery of being made to live without their parents or children or spouses.
From the joyous bustle and sounds of holiday gaieties, Diras became a tome of veneration. A mist blanketed the capital making the candlelight blurred and subdued, prayers and general news were murmured in soft voices, trinkets held tightly in hands, families huddled closer together, and once every due respect was paid, long tables lined with the last of Frewyn’s autumn harvest were set, and a grand feast in honour of the departed was ate. Drinks were poured, cups were raised, praises of those passed were exclaimed, the traditional songs in Old Frewyn were sung, and the joyfulness of holiday raillery soon recommenced.