Ancient as the alliance between the Elves and Gryphons is the ritual of Pledging, that time when an Elf and a Gryphon swear allegiance to one another before any other. A few snide individuals have remarked that the whole affair is rather like a wedding, but this is a simple view. In truth, the ritual is more like a formal oath, with both parties swearing loyalty and friendship to one another, until death or dishonor severs it.

Pledged pairs are as close as family, and it is not unusual to see them living together in tall buildings, with the Elves living on the bottom half and the Gryphons living on the top in what is called an “aerie”. This arrangement benefits both parties, with the Elves being permitted to ride their Pledges and the Gryphons receiving the care and crafts of theirs.

Before pledging, a sort of courtship begins in which the Gryphon will present the Elf of its choice with a primary feather, and the Elf will present the Gryphon of its choice with a pendant marked with their personal sigil and the crest of their House. If the courtship is accepted, each Pledge will wear the token of the other and invite their friends and family to the ritual, a three-day event usually accompanied by excessive food, drink, and entertainment.

On the first night the Pledges hold a vigil and drink only water, telling one another all their secrets, fears, shames and hopes.

On the second night the Pledges are given sweet foods and drinks, and are ritually bathed and massaged by attendants.

On the third night the Pledges take flight together, and return after a few hours to enjoy the feast with those who attended the ritual. A priest or priestess then presides over the vows each Pledge publicly makes to one another, and pronounces the bond sacred.


Posted March 5, 2012 by Evoru

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