The Maiden and the Lake Man Myth in Corive | World Anvil

The Maiden and the Lake Man

[In progress, will be changing]
Nøkken - Scandinavian folklore (Norwegian spelling) of a male water spirit who could lure women and children to their lake with enchanting music before drowning them. Variants of this being are found across the Germanic cultures, including the English Nix. This particular one is more based on the Norwegian variant than the naked man who shapeshifted into a horse of the Swedish näcken. [note to self, Nøkken needs a page]
Show spoiler
May or may not be related to elves? Haven't decided yet.


There was once a young girl who wore a cape of blue. This girl would take the path every week to her grandmother's house with a basket of goodies and a fiddle. Along the way there was a lake that was to the side of the path, and she would admire her reflection and her blue cape before playing the fiddle for a few minutes. Growing bored of playing for no one, she would resume her journey to her grandmother's house each time.
Several months, maybe even years, went by, and the girl would pause at the pond every time. No longer a small child, but growing into a young woman, she would take the moment of respite and rest near the pond for a short time, singing or playing the fiddle when awake, before carrying on with her travels.
One year, an unearthly scream echoed through the forest as loggers were fleeing from a fire into the river as a dam fell. The young woman was running toward her grandmother's house suspected to be in the flames, the music she played echoed across the lake, pulling her feet towards it. Her spell-bound form disturbing the water lilies in the shallows as she did not walk on the surface. As she neared the center of the lake, two hands reached up as the music stopped, and pulled her under. Only the blue cape floated to the surface.
There is a pond that only appears in the highest of tides, where a melody and counter melody are played from, and a tombstone with a basket of long gone food at the shore, dressed with a blue cape.
For protection when needing the lake's water, the people leave a small blood offering [need a page about that] of three drops, a loaf of winter bread, a bottle of [distilled alcohol], or a bundle of water lily seeds.

Historical Basis

There was a logging camp that had caught fire in Contested Lands region, and the dam upriver did break, bringing a major flood from [Tormyra] into the region.
By one of the logging camps, there is a lake with a gravestone, where offerings are left. There are similar offering shrines near other lakes, and this practice is seen up in Tormyra as well.
Nøkken, are found in the lakes of Contested Lands, Tormyra and Thedim, but not in the salt water regions of [Factory-Cities] or Goltheris


The myth is more a fairytale that seems to have originated from the Contested Lands, and moved into Tormyra and southern Theydim.

Variations & Mutation

There are variants, some where the girl was married to the Nøkken and together they play music, others where he tried to protect her from the flames and she drowned because he didn't realize she couldn't breathe, and a few where she was "sold" to him with varying end results.

Cultural Reception

In the Contested Lands, Nøkken are assumed to be in every lake, river, and pond, so offerings are left as nearly every body of water.

Cover image: by Lyraine Alei, Midjourney


Please Login in order to comment!