We Set the Dark on Fire by Tehlor Kay Mejia Read Online (FREE)
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In the beginning, there were two brother-gods: the God of Salt and the God of Sun.
On the inner island, the Sun God warmed the soil, shone down on the plentiful foliage, and browned the skin of his chosen children. On the outer island, the Salt God kept the water teeming with fish, the waves calm, and the beaches safe. For thousands of years, Medio existed in harmony and prosperity.
But then the Sun God fell in love.
Constancia was the daughter of Medio’s king. She was strong, brave, and her brilliant mind rivaled the god’s own. Each morning he shone brighter and brighter into her window, until one day he walked through in the form of a man, fell to one knee, and asked to be hers forever.
So Constancia became a goddess as well as a queen, and for a time, the divine walked the island in human form. Gods and rulers alike. But into the room that the Sun God shared with his bride, the Moon Goddess shone night after night, and soon she, too, fell in love.
One summer midnight, when the Sun God had walked alone into his moonlit garden, the Moon Goddess descended in the form of a beautiful woman. Her hair was tossed by darkness, her eyes glittered with stars, and her passionate love for the god-king swayed him. Constancia was his equal. His partner and his wife. But in the Moon Goddess he found his opposite, and he was intoxicated by her. For six days and six nights he sat still as a statue in the garden, trying to choose between them as the island waited in darkness.
Meanwhile, the Salt God tasted his brother’s indecision, and seethed. For eternity, the tides of his sea had obeyed none but the Moon Goddess, but each time he glimpsed her face she would turn slowly away from him, shrinking in his eye until she showed him nothing at all.
When the Sun God had finally made his choice, his angry brother ascended from the sea as a man to hear his proclamation.
With Constancia on one arm and the Moon Goddess on the other, the Sun God announced that from that moment onward, the three of them would rule as one. Constancia, his equal, and the goddess, his opposite. The kingdom, he promised, would prosper beyond anything they had ever imagined, and for each of the six days of his isolation, there would be a celebration day to follow.
The Salt God quietly disappeared, but a few days after the Sun God’s revelation, a storm lashed at the island. Houses were destroyed, and the villagers huddled in terror as the beaches and flatlands were destroyed. This was the Salt God’s revenge against a brother who he felt had stolen what belonged to him. After days of rain and punishing waves, he appeared at his brother’s house and issued his ultimatum: