The Twin Spirits, Lamd & Vulf

"Never one-" "Without the other" - Direct quote from the short story "From Hwir to Haradren", speakers are Lamd and Vulf respectively

Special thanks to "League of Legends" by Riot Games for the character concept and header art
The Twin Spirits, Lamd & Vulf is a common Elvish myth rooted in the last dying moments of an Elf's life. Only appearing in the last minutes of one's life, Lamd & Vulf come to claim their soul to ensure it is passed on to its desired destination. Lamd, a spirit of innocence, kindness and forgiveness, is the one to kill the individual if they accept their death, giving them a quick, painless death. Vulf, a spirit of vengeance, regret and agony, kills an individual only if they flee and do not accept their fate, the chase tiring them which gives way to more pain and suffering. While it would be easy to dismiss this myth as a means to frighten young elvish children, the Twin Spirits remind elders of a community to live their lives out now while they don't regret it, and even though the Twin Spirits have gone through a revision or two due to the introduction of humans, it is still nonetheless a part of Elvish culture.

Summary

Old Elvish tales tell of twin spirits that roam about the forests of Springlend, who are the manifestations of death in Elvish folklore. According to the myth, the two spirits, Lamd and Vulf, only appear in the last dying minutes of an Elf's life. They are responsible for the passage of one's soul to be passed through the Material Plane to the destination, whether it be the Positive Planes or the Negative Planes. Lamd is the white spirit of innocence, and she slays thoughts who have accepted their fate, with a quick clean strike of her short bow, painless and quick. Vulf is the black spirit of regret, and when an individual attempts to feel death, Vulf hunts them down and tears their soul from their bodies, a process many deem to be painful, long-lasting and regretful. While the precise origins of these two remain unknown, the most popular belief is that Lamd was the first creation Correllon made that died on the Material Plane, and Vulf was the first creation Lolith made that died also on the Material Plane. Correllon and Lolith both created the elves, but different variants, thus explaining the difference and similarities between Lamd and Vulf. Lamd is often depicted as a young child, wearing a mask with long white robes and equipped with a shortbow. Vulf is often depicted as a floating spirit with a wolf's head, with eyes that glow blue when hunting a soul.

Historical Basis

During the early years of the Material Plane's formation, the first lifeforms brought in by the gods were powerful demigods in their own right, each with a unique power or aspect attached to their creator. In this instance of the Twin Spirits, Lamd was the caring, naturing soul Correllon envision for his elves, while Vulf was the unrelentless and terrifying creature Lolith wanted. While not unique just to Springlend or Elvish culture, it is believed that the first of the god's creations when they passed ascended into godhood in their own way, but not Lamd or Vulf. Both did not ascend to godhood, creation the theory that they might have fought each other in the past due to the differences brought on them by their gods. It is quite possible both killed each other, and the two individuals either by fate or design have been inseparable. Ever since the two united, both surface and Underdark elves recall seeing vague spirits in their dying moments and they believe it was Lamd and Vulf coming in to ensure the passage, but as for what the elf would do is up to them.

Spread

Nearly all elves in Springlend know of the Twin Spirits, but not all of them believe it since its actual existence has not been proven by a scholar or an individual who's word is known to be true. But even outside Springlend, many elves living in other natures also believe in the Twin Spirits.

Variations & Mutation

The biggest deviation is how they are portrayed as. In the old elf tales from before the formation of Targonia, Lamd and Vulf were depicted as a high elf and drow respectively, still wear white and black robes, but while Lamd used a bow, Vulf used a barbed dagger to symbolize agony. However, it slowly changed over time due to the involvement of humans knowing about Elvish legends. To the humans, Lamd and Vulf sounded very familiar to Lamb and Wolf, which correlates to common sayings humans use about Shepards and wolf packs. Over time, the image of both changed to reflect the human interpretation, at first to the elves outside Springlend before finally affecting the actual history tellers in Springlend. Now Lamd resembles a human child with white robes made of cloth, and Vulf is a vengeful wolf spirit. Another common explanation for Vulf's change is related to the occurrence of Lupines being created in the Material Plane after it was created. Lupines, due to their wolf-like appearance and their approximation and respect to the elves, may have indirectly influenced future interpretations of Vulf, which also sounds very familiar to wolf, of which Lupines are also very close to.

Cultural Reception

While the Twin Spirits have no effect on everyday living, it is mostly told to members of the Elderly to remind them to do anything they wished to do before they passed. Since most would like to have a quick and easy death in life, they must accept their demise when Lamd and Vulf show up, and thus they are inspired to live their lives and without regrets. The elves believe that the souls of their kind will live on and be passed into the next newborn elf that comes into the world, but only if Lamd was the one that enabled that passage. Vulf, on the other hand, symbolizes regret and revenge, and members of the community are encouraged to not have those flaws, or else their passing would not only mean to the end for that soul, but it would be an painful end for that individual.

In Literature

Most Elvish works involving either vengeance or acceptance often involve the Twin Spirits, the most popular literature piece is the short-story "From Hwir to Haradren" by Tenerias Barkgrower, which recalls the tale of an unknown elvish protagonist exploring Springlend when he knew his death was coming, and the story is told by the perspective of Lamd and Vulf who watch him on his adventure.

In Art

Paintings of the Twin Spirits are rare, but do exist. The current interpretation of Lamd and Vulf is what most often see, either watching some individual about to die or a split painting of one-half of the spirit's face to form one individual.

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