The Spring Equinox is a Rathillien holiday.
The Merikit celebrate the Equinox with a mummery of a maiden's transformation into the Eaten One, followed by a feast by the Silver Head. After the feast, a maiden acting as the Ice Maid is sacrificed to the Eaten One, to get the Eaten One's blessing for the following year.
The mummery is largely comedic. It consists of several roles: The Maid, her suitors, The Maid's Mother, and The Eaten One. It also involves audience participation.
The play begins with The Maid rejecting various suitors with haughty gestures and personal insults. The end of the mummery goes as follows:
- The Maid: I would rather be a war maid and track the wild game.
- The Maid's Mother enters.
- The Maid's Mother: Take a mate and become a proper wyf. I have a fine lodge. To whom should I leave it if not to you?
- The Maid: What want I with hearth or housebond? What is a lodge but an earthbound trap?
- Audience stomps their feet.
- The Maid's Mother: Oh no! The earth is shaking! The River Snake must be hungry. Who will save us?
- The Maid swayed her hips seductively.
- The Maid: No need for a hero. I will deal with him, for who can resist my charms?
- The Maid's Mother exits. The Maid pantomimes gingerly walking on ice.
- The Maid: Ooh! This is harder than I thought.
- The Eaten One enters.
- Children in the audience: Look behind you!
- The Maid: Did I hear little birds twittering? Wakie, wakie, snakie, snakie!
- The Maid slips.
- The Maid: Oops. I’ve fallen into the water. Oh no!
- The Eaten One slithers over her.
- The Eaten One: Munch, munch, munch.
- Audience: And he ate her all-l-l up!
- ↑ Honor's Paradox, "Chapter X: Spring Equinox" (Spring 37)
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