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Nazar. Via MLMM

Nazar. Via MLMM

The dunes rose in gentle crests.  The dunes fell in dark valleys.   But always the desert wind fought her.

Liuza leaned into the wind – shielded her mouth with her scarves – grit her teeth.  But her robes clung to her ankles and thighs, making every step a skirmish with the sand.

And today – as always – the scent of myrrh clung to the wind.

This scent was no blessing.  It was Kattiv’s disguise – his calling card – his jab at all things good.  He was an alchemist, a sorcerer, a minor prince – and his appetites were as immense as his reach.

It was no accident that he used perfume to mask his presence: he used a pleasant smile and a handsome face to mask his corrupt heart, too.  Wherever Liuza roamed, travelers would spit when they heard his name.  Herdsmen blamed Kattiv for every sickness; mothers used his name to coerce children into compliance.

Liuza’s bag was heavy with talismans and lucky tokens meant to protect her from Kattiv’s possessive eye, but – only one talisman could protect Liuza: the Mighty Nazar of Bahari.  It was said that the Nazar’s concentric rings of cobalt and silver were the eye of the ocean itself.

Kattiv had cursed the ocean in his fear and his jealousy – and the ocean does not forgive.

So Liuza staggered onwards – towards the Coast of Bahari – and she sang on her journey:

Eye of the Ocean, never sleeping,
Powerful and pure, protect me from his corruption.    

Eye of the Ocean, my beacon, true,
Guide this poor traveler on her arduous journey.

Linked to the Fairy Tale Prompt at MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie, where Chèvrefeuille gave us the following mission:

“Imagine that you are in the Middle East and you are haunted by some sorcerer … the only way to defeat that sorcerer is by wearing a Nazar, but you have to go on a quest to find that Mighty Nazar to defeat the sorcerer.”

I wanted to use Mediaeval Baebes for this piece – they accompanied my last fairy tale, too – then this song came to mind.  The lyrics  are “Salva nos, stella maris / Et regina caelorum” – “Save us, star of the sea / and queen of heaven”.   And yes – the song is about the Virgin Mary – but doesn’t the Nazar look a bit like a “star of the sea”?  And in medieval paintings, the Virgin was almost always painted in blue robes.

The last two verses are landays.

 

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25 thoughts on “The Nazar of Bahari (Prose / Landay)

  1. Another marvellous piece of scene setting – all those fine descriptive details and the wonderful characters – which sets the scene for……. 😉

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      • And… I think you might possibly ‘finish off’ a couple of stories too? I’ve read some excellent openings of stories at BIOLI over the last couple of months, which hook the reader very nicely – and fitting a whole short story into 750ish words is quite fun once you start playing with the plot…

        Of course, i know you already work across so many different forms 🙂

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  2. Wow .. nearly missed this in my rush … this is really a very fine story, reminds me of something I’d read in the Arabian Nights … cool that the bad guy should be called Kattiv (in Italian cattivo means bad and is pronounced like your Kattiv – in fact some Italian cartoonist have used the K to make their readers thing their writing about an English baddy!) Those Landau are fantastic too … sigh 🙂 … an all around real beauty!

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    • Thanks Georgia!

      You caught my trick in calling him “Kattiv” — that came from Google Translate — Maltese! On one hand, they said it meant “pleasant” — but in the fine print they said it meant “wicked” and “unkind”. Pretty cool info about the cartoonists using the “K”!

      Glad you liked it — I ran out of steam and probably should have given it a better ending.

      Be careful on your trip, okay? Hugs! And get lots of photos!

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      • Thanks Jen … got my bags packed … got my tickets in my bags (very useful) and I’m ready to go … oh and I saw the partial eclipse of the sun too! Too cool!

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        • Lucky you… I would love to have seen it!

          Sing with me: “she’s got a ticket to ride… She’s got a ticket to ri-i-ide…!” 😉

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        • “she’s got a ticket to ride! And she don’t care …” The train trip was uneventful and had a nice walk with kiddo to his home. We’ll be heading out (maybe) for a morning to the sea – the sky’s overcast – in alittle while. Ciao for now!

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