J7

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J7 - VICTORIA

You will believe a woman can fly.

The demi-god Victoria, daughter of Ariel, exulted as she flew in the sky of the Land We Know all aglow with light created by Chokhmah. This light was not confined to a small spot in the sky as are the suns which shine upon worlds. Rather, the whole sky changed from the dark of night to glowing white every day, and this light also brought warmth. And Chokhmah had created seasons by causing the light to shine for timespan of two parts in three during summer days, but only one part in three during winter days, and equal parts on spring and autumn days. But there were no stars.

Victoria soared over the River Armak, which flowed northeast on the east of Nath, and she looked down upon the dam men built in pale imitation of El Shaddai's walls ringing the Sacred Mountain. That dam formed Lake Enkaa upon the same river. She saw also a second river named the Nanki, which flowed northeast through Alodra and entered the sea in the heart of the Kingdom of Menkal. The third and largest river was Sabik, which flowed west to divide Menkal from the Saiph League and entered the sea at Murzi Bog.

Bat-El had called the sea Thalury. He had carved many coves and headlands into it, and set two large islands off the coast, and many lesser islands also. The large islands were called Elendal and Avior.

Victoria looked down and saw how Binah had brought forth upon the Land We Know many growing things, and trees with leaves of many colors, red and green, yellow and gold, such that the land looked to be perpetually in the full glory of autumn as it was known on Earth. Yet Binah's trees were never bereft of leaves, even in winter. They fell from their trees individually after a span, and were replaced by another.

Some beasts were brought from Earth, and other beasts were introduced by the elohim after they had changed them from original Earth stock. And for the most part these creatures were benign, and fitted in well with the ecology of the Land We Know, and the sea Thalury, or they were herd animals which men and nephilim tamed when they came. But no plant life was introduced from Gorpai, for it was too aggressive, and would soon displace all the gentler samples from Earth.

Belial knew that unchecked the animals would breed far beyond the ability of the Land We Know to support them, and chief among these animals, he knew, would be the human beings and nephilim who would come. So Belial introduced to the Land We Know monstrous predators from their darkest dreams to keep all of them in check. Then was seen in the Land We Know many trolls, and goblins, and Leviathan, the dragon under the sea who devoured those who foundered therein. But the most fierce predator of all were the winged dragons who nested in aeries high above the Land We Know on the unassailable cliffs of the Sacred Mountain. Then all who went on two or four legs had to keep one eye on the sky, for they were the dragon's prey, as surely as the smaller creatures were ever the prey of eagles.

And Belial thought himself revenged on Binah and the others by irreparably marring the world they were creating. But the predators created by Belial were taken to be strong threads woven into the growing tapestry that was the Land We Know, and the other elohim honored the wisdom of Belial, yet Binah found a way to put a leash on the dragons.

And Victoria descended to Suhair in Menkal to meet her friend Mike, a member of the Gervasi Crime Family but not her blood relative. She had grown fond of him, but not in the strangely sexual way that Binah had arranged to keep the Family bound tightly together. And Suhair seemed peaceful to her, for it was a full century before Blackseed would bring war to Menkal.

Lilith is gathering the whole family together on the Moon, Mike told her when Victoria came in, after a flight that he could scarcely imagine. But then again, he had seen with his own eyes many things under the sea that he could never express to Victoria in mere words.

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