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Pray Like The Clappers by Nigel Roth

Dernière mise à jour : 2 mars 2021

The first night was very cold. 

Strangers gathered, staying in their familiar groups, ready for the time when the ritual would start. The hidden moon shed little light, but voices could be heard in the dark, talking low in known and unknown tongues. Suddenly, a cry went up, and as the gathered raised their hands in front of them in intuitive unison, a religion was born.

And they clapped.

They clapped for their protectors, like Cernunnos, or Herne the Hunter, Pan, Faunus or Pashupat, or Enaitchess, so that they would keep protecting them during this torrid time and always look favorably down upon them from their air ambulances in the sky.

As they clapped they felt alive again, after weeks of sitting in silent fear, with visions of their world falling apart through food shortages, and a sickness that responded to no cures, and unfavorable fortunes, and leaders lost in their own trance-like States.

They clapped to feel the blood in their veins flow again, to feel strength return as they fed off the energy of their fellow clappers. They stood for the first time in weeks, on shaky legs, clapping, clapping. Their hands dropped the flint they were napping or the Playstation controllers they were holding, and their fingers moved through the air like the wings of Picus.

As they clapped, they saw neighboring tribes arrive at the gathering, adorned in their finest trinkets and garb, to join the clapping, and they clapped with glee to show they too were respectful of the clapping gods. And they made a note to wear their best twisted copper torques next time.

Their clapping intensified when they thought of the pride of their own tribe, and were proud to represent their kinsfolk, like the Taexali and the Carvetii, the Damnonii and Iceni, and the Church Street South of the Tesco, and they clapped for their own kin as much as the next tribe.

They clapped, of course, because it was an unseen law that clapping was needed to ward off the evil spirits of the underworld. And as ritual abiding citizens, they clapped their hearts out to mend mammoth breaks and smilodon bites, and spear wounds, and the unseen deathbringer, garland-sickness.