The greatest festival of the kingdom is the releasing of the waters of growth from their reservoir in the mountains every spring.  Each family has their own little gate and their own channels that run to their land and on this special occasion, they release them all together.

The occasion is special for many reasons.  Tradition, the holiday sense of fun and excitement, the feasts, the games.  But most of all, it is the waters themselves.

These waters have strength and power beyond ordinary waters.  They are literally magical.   They carry a fresh scent with them, wiping out the must of winter.  Everywhere they go, the land brightens, the green of the plants deepen, and nature grows.  To drink from these waters is to be renewed.

The time of the waters is a time of joy, of renewal, of happiness, of spiritual peace.

The second greatest festival of the kingdom is releasing the waters at midsummer, when they bring furthered growth, coolness, and happiness and joy.

The third greatest festival of the kingdom is the final release at the end of the summer, when they soften the land, ripen the harvest, and gladden all hearts.

Well, not all hearts.

There are some who open their own little gate out of season.  At first they experience extra growth, extra happiness.  The temptation can be strong.

But after a time the growth seems to go just a bit astray.  The crops grow but not to the bringing of fruit.  A sadness sets in.  The owner has to repent and endure a season of want, or else has to release the waters more and more frequently.  Some people’s lands have turned into swamps, and they release the waters near continually not for any growth or happiness at all, but merely to flush out the sludge and scum that grows there rapidly.

The saddest thing is that it is not only the person who releases the waters wrongly who is affected, but often their whole families.  Their lines and their land can take generations to recover.

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