Once, on a far off plane, through many forests and through many plains, was a large, fertile thicket. This thicket was home to many bounteous places and wonders, from exotic orchards, refuges for those of the gray pelts, and groves scattered through out, some filled with sun petals. In the center of this thicket, was a wooded bastion with a large hall for a special gathering.
It was at this hall in the center of the thicket that the goddess Karametra came to harvest all that this land had to offer and celebrate with as many creatures as she could find, a festival of thanks for all that the land provided and for the creatures who gathered in gratitude.
In this cradle of vitality, Karametra set up her court of bounty; for it was at the convergence of of many abundant leylines. Kamaretra dictated that this was now a sanctum of fruitful harvest, and would be where she would show her love to all that had peacefully gathered in gratitude for the land’s bounty.
Food must be gathered for the feast, she though. Karametra made haste making sure that Gaea’s Bounty would come to fruition and produce a early harvest of the primeval bounty that the land provided. While this was a major endeavor, it was a giant opportunity to end hostilities between the denizens of this plane. She would gather them and allow them all to receive a taste of paradise.
Karametra’s first harvest was bountiful. Realizing, however, how many mortals she planned to gather, Karametra planned a second harvest, but only after she used her power to replenish the soul of the harvest and the land. It was a slow, incremental growth, but once again, the land was a fertile and abundant.
“I am collecting food for a feast,” Karametra said, “where all the mortals and immortals of this land may gather in peace and feed the clan.”
Lathiel, who had observed a singular mortal gatherings, excitedly suggested that Karametra recruit some mortal assistance to help with her feast.
“I know many mortals and immortals alike,” Lathiel said, “who would love to gather for such a feast under such a pledge of unity. I know this forest very well. May I help you gather some of them to help with such a wonderful task?”
Karamentra, though she wasn’t entirely convinced of the unicorn’s knowledge of mortals, smiled and nodded, and Lathiel dash off into the thicket. Just as they left, Karamentra heard a voice from above her.
“I, too, would love to help,” said the voice, serenely above the goddess.
Karamentra craned her neck and saw an angel descending from the heavens.
“My name is Shalai. I know plenty entities from around the plane that would peacably attend your fest. May I summon them for you?”
Karametra nodded, and flutter of wings, Shalai sped off out of the thicket, to invite as many that would gather for the feast the goddess had planned.
Knowing that assistance was coming, Karametra took a small respite. However, her idleness did not last long, for Lathiel returned quickly. At first, it appeared to Karametra that Lathiel had only returned with one person, but soon, many more exited the tree line into the thicket clearing.
“As I have observed many mortal gatherings,” Latheil said, “I have retrieved many important pieces required for a feast,”
“Please explain,” Karametra requested, filled with amusement and curiosity.
“Well, we now have a mother, a mentor, a knight, supply runners, and elders,” Lathiel said confidently.
While this didn’t sound like any mortal gathering guest list that she had ever heard of, Karametra nodded and welcomed all of her newfound assistants and guests.
“Also,” Latheil chirped, “you need furry pets that to complete any mortal gathering.”
Smiling at the unicorn’s enthusiasm, Karametra turned to the Mother and asked what she had brought to assist.
Lathiel trotted up to the Mother excitedly. “Don’t worry about that! I met some others who said that they would be along shortly to help with that”
No sooner than the unicorn had spoke but a thicket shook with a loud voice.
“We have arrived!” said the voice bellowed.
The trees at the edge of the thicket parted, and dryad with 3 heads strode towards the collected company, attended by two other individuals in hooded cloaks.
“Oh boy! Trostani! You made it!” Lathiel exclaimed, reaing back in excitement
“Yes, my child,” they dryad responded evenly, “and I have brought loyal druids to who offer gifts and wish to help complete the harvest.”
“Gifts?” Karametra inquired, curious.
“We also bring this offering, ” the other druid said, stepping forward as well and holding up a plump gilded goose. “We offer this and the pheasants that we fell to serve as meat for this joyous occasion”
Smiling, Karametra nodded and thanked Trostani and her druids for their contribution.
“Well then,” the mother stated, “we should get to work”. Looking to the druids, “You bring that into the bastion and we’ll get working on it right away. The rest of you, either come help in the kitchen or keep an eye out for our guests!” And with that, she sped into the kitchen to get started, followed by the knight and the druids.
It wasn’t long before an alluring scent filled the thicket. Lathiel, wanting to make sure that the remaining guests would be able to find their way, galloped into the forest with bags of bread mounted to them, hoping to leave a trail of crumbs for the guests to follow.
As the evening began to fall, it was time to commence the festivities. Guests slowly started to arrive and gather at the table that the mentor and the elders had set for everyone. Mortal and immortal, human, elf, and beast alike gathered in a cheerful cacophony of voices and merriment.
A planeswalker from a far off land arrived first, handsome, and offering a blessed wine for the table. Soon they were followed by all sorts of enchanting creatures, here to celebrate the harvest.
As he sat, there was a loud growl at the edge of the thicket. Slowly a wicked wolf walked into view, followed on foot by Shalai.
“This one smelled the meat and has offered to come in peace if he may also have a spot at your table,” the angel stated loudly to the assembled guests.
Karametra was dubious, but the wolf seemed distracted by the appetizing scents that filled the thicket, which seemed to lull him into more docile nature. Satisfied that he would cause no trouble, Karametra nodded and pointed to a spot next to a slightly brutish gingerbread man where the wolf would be served.
“Dinner is served!” shouted the Mother, emerging from the bastion with the cooked gilded goose. She was met by shouts and howls of delight and even applause from those that had hands. Those that had not already been seated performed a coordinated charge towards the table to make sure that they would get a spot.
As the Mother placed the meats down on the table, the knight arose and with one fell swoop of the mother’s cleaver, all the meat was sliced in twain and ready to serve.
“Before we feast,” Karametra announced, “let us give thanks for the common bond that we all share; the bond that has gathered us here, and recite a pledge of unity for this day: a day we gather in thanks and honor the fallen”
The table fell respectfully silent, basking in the atmosphere of thanks and peace.
The silence was intereupted by a loud booming voice from beyond the treeline
“And why was I not invited!” the voice bellowed.
“Show yourself,” Karametra replied, with a voice that shook the plates and goblets on the table.
There was crashing sound as out of the woods stepped forth the largest troll the goddess had ever seen. On his bald head, he bore a small beaten, wooden crown
“I am a Troll King”, the troll stated, “and I’m hungry. Let me eat your food!”
“Do you come in peace?” the goddess asked, staring the Troll King dead in the eye.
“Whether I come in peace or not does not matter! You’re eating food in my woods, therefore I get to have some!”
Smiling mischievouly, Karametra nodded and replied, “Let me get you a plate your majesty, over flowing with gilded goose”
“Now that’s more like it!” the troll king barked, and sat down at the far end of the table while all the other guests stared.
The goddess brought the Troll king a plate filled with all the bounty of banquet, and the troll king gobbled it down with an predatory hunger
“I want more!” he shouted. Still smiling, the goddess offered him another heaping plate.
After his sixth plate, the Troll king’s consumption seemed to slow quite a bit.
“I….I think I’m done,” he mumbled, almost drunkenly.
“Well,” Karametra replied, “I hope you saved room for dessert.”
“Dessert!?!” the Troll king exclaimed, “I can barely move now I’m so filled with gilded goose and pheasant and soup”
“You will reap what is sown, your majesty” Karametra stated with mirth.
Too sleepy to notice the goddess’ comment, the troll king leaned back in his chair, and before long, the thicket was filled with the sound of his snoring. This however was shortly drowned out by the laughter and merriment of the guest resuming.
“You’ll make sure he gets back okay?” Karametra asked Shalai
Shalai nodded to the goddess as she took another sip of wine.
Looking around the thicket, filled with those gathered in peace and in gratitude, Karametra decided that this should happen every year. While those who attended this year might choose to not do so next year, she knew that this tradition would grow, and spread. The faces may change, the food might be different, but every year, this would become the time of a grateful magical gathering.