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Ery
Image of Ery
Ery (top) and Halia
Gender Female
Race(s) Mermaid, formerly human
Former occupation(s) Tidesage of the Windward
Relative(s) Halia (lover)
Booknovel
This article contains lore taken from Warcraft novels, novellas, or short stories.

Ery was a Kul Tiran tidesage and one of the two main characters in the Kul Tiran folktale "Why the Mermaids Left Boralus", which tells of the love between her and the mermaid Halia.

Biography[]

Ery was born in a gutter's hut in the fledgling town of Boralus. As a tidesage, she served aboard the two-master Windward and was very deeply loved by the people of Boralus for her bravery and quickness and for having vouchsafed her ship over many journeys, from the Eastern Kingdoms and farther beyond. The sun burned her skin brown and her duty made her serious and pensive. Although she was liked and respected by her crew, she did not seek company in anything but prayers to the Tidemother and, as a result, felt a deep loneliness.

The mermaid Halia eventually fell in love with Ery and began swimming near the Windward when it was in port so she could admire the sea priest's long brown hair. The sailors begged the captain to let them scare off or kill the mermaid, but Ery forbade them, and she never failed to give Halia a salute when the Windward arrived to Boralus or bid her goodbye when the ship left. Some new crew members tried to jeer at the tidesage for making a mascot out of a mermaid, but she silenced them with her hard fists. When the ship was anchored in Boralus and Ery went swimming in the harbor, Halia left gifts for her in the form of half-dead fish or (when the fishing was poor) pearls. Because Ery was as sensible as she was serious, she dumped the pearls back into the water weeds. According to the tale, this is why Boralus Harbor has so much bubble seaweed: it is all of Halia's discarded pearls.

By observing her and offering her gifts, Halia became more familiar with Ery's ways than anyone else and unwittingly disrupted the tidesage's loneliness. Ery was at first solemn over the gifts, then touched, and finally amused. She was attracted to Halia's beauty as well, and spent a whole voyage sharpening a gut-hook knife to give as a return gift. Upon returning to the harbor, she waded into the shallows, called for Halia, and gave her the knife. The shy mermaid and the grave tidesage kissed and confirmed their feelings for each other. Halia then asked Ery to come live with her underwater, explaining that if she slit her feet and walked into the harbor, the Mother would take pity on her and turn her into a mermaid. Ery refused, citing her duties as a tidesage. In response, Halia instead begged Ery to make a house by the shore and let her swim alongside her ship on voyages, but the tidesage replied that they had to keep their relationship secret or else her crew would reject her, which would be the death of them. Halia wept at this but agreed out of her love for Boralus and the Windward. From that day onward, sea priest and mermaid met in secret coves and waterways, growing more dear to each other in the process.

One day, when the Windward was in dock, a great storm came to Boralus and threatened to destroy the town. With no hope of reinforcements, Ery and the handful of other tidesages who were present gathered in tiny boats at the river's mouth to divert the water. The other priests faltered one by one until, on the fifth day, only Ery was left. Halia begged her to slit her feet and save herself, but Ery replied that there was still a chance if she could hold back a large waving coming toward them. Halia decided to help her, and while the priest parted the waters with one blow, the mermaid held the water back from the other side so that they together ripped the seas in twain. Ery stated that their work was not yet done, and Halia declared that she would build a wall while her beloved held the water. She began piling rocks and mud on the seabed, pausing every so often to check on Ery, but the tidesage always said that the work was not yet done. Eventually, Halia was joined in her work by her fellow mermaids, but Ery knew nothing of this, still standing in the wreck of her ship and pulling back on the waves. At this point, the Windward arrived and tried to rescue their tidesage, but she refused to come to them. The mermaids' wall grew so tall that it began to rise under Ery's feet, lifting her above the water until it towered over the harbor. Halia returned over and over to ask if the work was done, and when the tidesage finally turned around to answer, she collapsed from exhaustion and fell into the water. Without her power to hold them back, the waves crashed into the seawall, but it held steady.

Halia immediately dived after Ery and pulled her to the surface, but the priest was neither breathing nor moving. The crew of the Windward hauled the two onto their deck, where the sailors and other tidesages tried to revive Ery without any luck. Eventually, Halia drew a knife, slit open her lover's feet, and cried for the sailors to push the two of them over the railing and into the harbor. The crew did so and wept for their tidesage, but after a long wait, Ery's head broke the surface. Her hair now had a strange sheen and her legs had been replaced by a tail, but her face remained the same: the Mother had taken pity on her and transformed her into a mermaid. Halia held her arms around her beloved's neck, alternately weeping and laughing with joy.

Ery never returned to Kul Tiras a tidesage or a fellow in arms, but the entire island now knows her story. On certain calm sunsets when the red is deeply reflected on the surface of Boralus Harbor, old sailors call it "Ery's blood", which presages good weather, in remembrance of the dutiful tidesage and the mermaid who loved her so faithfully.[1]

Quotes[]

  • "Kill fish out of hunger, and kill pirates to defend yourselves, but I won't suffer you to kill a mermaid out of chickenheartedness." (to her crew)
  • "In another life I would, but not this one. I have walked the path and pledged what I am to the Tidemother, and ships cannot move through firth or fjord without me. There are not enough tidesages that I could throw off my duty and live with you, Halia."
  • Ery: "The storm will be at its peak tonight, but it is breaking half the spit into the water. Behold that wave coming toward us! If it gets through me, all is lost. If I can seal the harbor's mouth now, I will. If I die, I would as lief leave Boralus behind me."
Halia: "If you die, I die. I will help you."

References[]

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