Cathedris Themesong

Split the Stride

A Coming of Age, or an Ending of Youth

You didn't even go between Sharenskus's legs, you went behind em. Come back when you've done the real thing, this table is for adults only.
— Young adult rivalry
  To many foolhardy youth that live across the coastal city of Russin, the path to adulthood is routed between the two giant legs of the water bound God-husk Sharenskus. If one wishes to think of themselves fully mature, they must undertake the extraordinarily dangerous stunt of captaining a sail or steam ship through Sharenskus's legs, while he is in mid stride.  

The brave die young

The tradition is an extremely popular talking point among all those who call Russin home -- yet barely a fraction have attempted it, due to both the theoretical danger and the proven deadliness it possesses. Tales of splitting the stride are passed from older generations to the younger as a warning not to attempt the ridiculous maneuver; those tales are then passed around between students on lunch break as mythical stories of those who attempted the impossible.  
Every single year, even with all the warnings, a few dozen people attempt to split the stride. Most are stopped long before they even reach Sharenskus; there's a watch tower on Break Point exiting the Russin harbour district, as well as always at least one guard boat in the water. However some still manage to sneak through -- and while there are a lucky few that survive the extremely risky ritual, a significant portion never make it back to shore.
Oh, no, absolutely not. I never even dreampt of splitting the stride -- at least, not after I watched my closest friend attempt it and nearly die.
— An older Russinian, reflecting.
I'm not even kidding, I heard that once someone split the stride accidentally. The captain had a few too many Russin-specials, and fell asleep drunk at the helm just after loading his boiler with coal. Woke up when the spray from Sharenskus's legs hit his face, and by that point it was too late to change course, so he just held on tight and prayed -- and popped out the other side unscathed.
— A popular drinking story


Cover image: Art by Stormbril, base image by Artem Verbo


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18 Jul, 2021 09:39

I love that you made a coming of age ceremony that only the foolhardy would attempt. Many such examples in our world, it is nice to see it done in a fantasy setting too!

19 Jul, 2021 04:27

Thank you! Yeah, I definitely remember seeing a lot of that sort of attitude when growing up -- "you're not cool if you don't do BLANK!", so it's really fun to take it in a fantasy direction too :)

Cathedris, the world of God-Husks and New Magic, welcomes you.
18 Jul, 2021 16:57

Great article Storm, I especially liked the Captain that Split the Stride on accident :D   Also, I am wondering are there similar tests of courage performed with some of the other God-Husks?

Author of Cenorad ; a bleak-dark sandbox of creativity.
19 Jul, 2021 04:30

Thanks Sloqush! :D   There definitely are -- many of them are more extreme versions of Danger Tourism, done totally unsupervised! Not many are as iconic as sailing through Sharenskus's legs mid stride, though.

Cathedris, the world of God-Husks and New Magic, welcomes you.
Sage Dylonishere123
R. Dylon Elder
18 Jul, 2021 19:13

This is such a cool take on the prompt. I could easily see this being a thing in cathedris. Well done. The quotes were a nice touch as well.

19 Jul, 2021 04:31

Thanks Dylon! :)

Cathedris, the world of God-Husks and New Magic, welcomes you.
19 Jul, 2021 15:24

As always, I am both afraid yet interested. I think I would end up being the people stopping the foolhardy children attempting this. Gosh, it sounds so cool though.... i love it :)

You should check out the The 5 Shudake, if you want of course.
19 Jul, 2021 19:52

Absolutely! A little bit of risk is okay, but danger on this level for what might be considered a "dare" -- no thanks! xD

Cathedris, the world of God-Husks and New Magic, welcomes you.