Eclipse by Lferion
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Author's Notes:
This one is for Taz.

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He remembered when the blood-brown moon was cause for sacrifice: blood and life poured out upon the ground, flesh and hope offered to the fire, the smoke billowing up, entreating the heavens to mercy. When the temple-singers wailed and the mourning-women took up the threnody of grief and fearful, aweful hope. He remembered the cacophony of horns and pipes, the vibration of shell and copper, horn and bronze a desperate vibration against his lips; the rattle and clatter and boom of sistrum and drum, the cry and crash of cymbals shaking the air, calling the moon back into the sky.
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He remembered waiting in the shadow, blue on his face, bronze in his hands, both black in the moonlight, his brothers breathing beside him as they waited for the edge of darkness to mar the shining circle. Waiting for the clangor of bells and gongs, the thump and stamp of feet to fill the silence, and mask the sounds of slaughter. He remembered moon-white faces with empty eyes staring at the dimming sky as their tide of death advanced upon the plaza and slew the celebrants with blood-black hands; when the moon returned, unheralded, the city lay eclipsed and still.
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He remembered when the creeping shadow staining silver light to copper gloom was dire portent of disaster. When generals charted troop advancements by the course of stars, and light too little or too much was sign of heaven's disarray. He remembered tending to the bonfire, a redder roar and brighter than the sickly moon, as soothsayers and magi counseled Darius of Persia to despair. Megas Alexandros would take the field: the occult moon was death of kings, the signs confirmed by fiery descent of stars to earth. And when the moon was dark in ordinary time, indeed the Persians fell.
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He remembered Galileo peering through his lenses of shaped glass that made the distant lights leap close and show their spinning faces, proving to be spheres. The moon reflected sunlight: a mirror, not a source. Eclipse was interruption, the Earth imposed twixt moon and sun, and no mystery or portent. Predictable phenomena with the mechanism known. The cold and windy dark was cause for joy, not fear: examining the shadows could push back the edge of ignorance and free the soul from dread. No dragons stalked the skies, consuming and regurgitating stars. No doom or dread but heaven's ordered course.
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He remembered lounging on a balcony, his arms around Alexa, watching the shadow of the earth engulf the moon, the sands of Santorini dark beneath their feet. The hush of wine-dark waves was quiet, ceaseless song. Her head lay on his shoulder as she rested close in his embrace, her flesh no weight at all, her life a so—small glimmer in the dark. He told her tales of firelight and bells, dragon-knights and calling back the light, all hope and wonder, nothing of the fear; and told himself he was too old for portents, and would not allow despair.
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Now, Methos stood and saw the moon a place: a surface men had walked, could walk again, explore in arid, airless grace. The curve of her bulged out into the sky, beaten bronze in earthlight as she spun, tethered to the world. The shadow on the sky was never still, would never cease to move as long as planets circled. As he had never ceased to move, seeking, reaching for another day. As he watched, a silver edge emerged, grew brighter, casting stronger light. He spoke — a murmur, knowing Duncan heard: "I want to see the Earth eclipse the Sun."
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Notes: The eclipse of the moon 20 Feb 2007 inspired me. wrote a Live Journal entry that focused that inspiration and gave me the final image.

Nasa's lunar eclipse site
There was a total lunar eclipse on 4 April 1996. Methuselah's Gift aired 28 April 1996.

The Galileo Project

The battle of Gaugamela, Alexander the Great's victory over Darius III, took place on 1 October, 11 days after a total lunar eclipse on 20 September, 331 BC.

My Highlander50 table