How Cirta became the Mistress of the Underground Waters
When the great Ophiotaurus beast was slain and its life-giving blood poured from the shifting skies, the world grew full of water, and there was a strife between its sons and the living things.
Hekas, the Breaker of Trees, was the eldest son of Ophiotaurus, and every year he claimed a tribute from the living things, and his hunger was boundless.
One year, Cirta, Phoeraia’s sister, was chosen to be sacrificed and, despite her tears, she traveled east to his cave. There, in the depth of a well, the Dusk Caster Hekas was hissing and laughing with pleasure when he saw the white-armed Cirta. He was about to encircle her in the coil of his limitless body when she spoke, ‘O, beautiful, most beautiful Hekas, Light of the World! I beseech you, grant me one final wish before I meet my untimely end. ’
‘What do you want from me?’ said the monster.
‘I am a maiden who has never known the pleasure of the games of love, and you, gentle Hekas, you are the most beautiful of all. Teach me the fight of kisses so I can be at peace .’
Hekas remained silent, so Cirta continued, ‘I want you in me, my noble Lord, this is the only thing I desire, I swear it on the endless dome of the Sky. I want to love and only that’
‘I will grant your wish,’ replied Hekas finally. ‘However, do not think that I will spare your life. After your caresses satisfy me, you will be devoured .’
‘I wish for nothing else,’ said Cirta. ‘But how can I accept you in me, O Infinite Snake? The tenth part of the tenth part of you is longer than the distance from the earth to the skies. Please reduce yourself according to my shape, so that we can be one. ’
Hekas agreed and did what Phoeraia’s sister implored him to do. Then, the swift Cirta drew out her dagger, beheaded the mighty Hekas and swallowed his body. She then put the hissing head in her, between her thighs, and said, You are now in me, O arrogant, most arrogant Hekas, and I am full of your endless knowledge and power.But the head of the monster quickly rotted and fermented in her, sprouting black blood and mist. Cirta became feverish, her womb grew swollen, and she laid in the depth of the well for one year. When this time passed, the sapphire-skinned Zephrios Hekaterios emerged from her like a spring from a rock. He stretched his arms, looked at his mother and found her beautiful. Zephrios wrapped his mother in his sweet, shining foam. He took pleasure in her and vanished following the great tides. After another year, Cirta gave birth to two twins, and they were called the Zephrides, the daughters of Zephrios, and sometimes the Hekaterides, because they descended from the great monster.