But as time passed, and the gods failed to make their presences known, people began to wonder where they had gone, and doubt their return. Many began to fear they had in some way angered or offended the Five, but their prayers went unanswered, apparently unheard. As the years went by, many began to lose their faith in the gods, and worship of other beings began. Cults centered around the Ether Spirit, the Realm itself, and even the First Royal Kazule, sprang up, despite attempts to quell them.
However, the Five had not abandoned Felnova. When they returned, they stilled the anger, the fear and recriminations, and the despair that had befallen the people, walking among them and assuring them they would never turn their backs on the Realm, even if they might at times be required to depart for distant Realms for long periods of time. None dared argue openly with this, but Time suspected many harbored doubts.
He gathered the rest of the Five, and they discussed what they could do for their people until, at length, they settled upon a solution. They crafted in the night sky an eternal reminder of their dedication to Felnova, a great dragon that would forever stand watch over the Realm below. These stars shine brightly in the sky, and can be seen from every part of Felnova.
The Five haven't always managed to walk among their people on Felnova as often as they may have preferred, but the gleaming reminder of their presences, shining brightly in the night, reassures people that their gods are there, and always will be.
However, although they both sought knowledge, their motivations were different. Azcen sought knowledge for its own sake, while Nebrielas sought knowledge for the betterment of his species. At times, Nebrielas would cease wandering so he could tell other lions all that he had learned and live among them, helping them as best he could with his newfound knowledge, while Azcen, on his own, continued his search for knowledge. Eventually, this endless thirst for learning caught Gaz'in's attention, and he watched the two brothers for quite some times.
He saw in Azcen a kindred spirit, and a fitting candidate for godhood. The Realm of Ristell was still young, and without gods, and the fiery lion was a strong candidate. However, when Gaz'in appeared to him, Azcen was reluctant to ascend and leave Nebrielas behind, despite his brother's encouragement to accept the great god's offer. For a brief time, Gaz'in withdrew to confer with the rest of the Ten, and returned with an offer for both of them to ascend to godhood; Azcen as part of Ristell's pantheon, and Nebrielas as the patron demigod of the lions of Vystriana. The brothers accepted this offer.
Nebrielas was made into a constellation, a starry lion roaring his defiance against the night sky, sleeping by day out of sight of mortal eyes. However, at times, these stars would vanish from the night sky as Nebrielas, taking on the persona of Aular, the Reizen of a pride of lions, walked among his mortal kin. These forays became longer and longer, and his divinity faded over time as he became mortal once again.
Eventually, he died of old age, but was reborn, and the cycle begun anew. A hundred times, he died, and was reborn, before reappearing in the night sky as Nebrielas. His power has faded, but he remains a guiding force in the lives of Vystrian lions, granting them visions and guiding them through dreams as he maintains his nocturnal vigil.
You see, Cirrus and R'rkain Ascended during a dark time for our kind, and would be the cause of things getting darker still. For R'rkain was never supposed to Ascend in the first place. Time erred when he chose Cirrus, not knowing he was twin brother to R'rkain, so when Cirrus arose to godhood, so too did R'rkain.
For a time, it seemed as though Time's misgivings were baseless, as the twin gods ruled over the wolves and brought about a new era of stability and peace. But, alas, it was not to be. Cirrus, chosen of Time, forsook his brother's companionship in favor of bettering his people. R'rkain harbored resentment of his brother's authority and prestige, and a burning ambition to surpass his brother which was further fueled by what he saw as his brother's betrayal. He came so very close to succeeding, facing off against Cirrus in battle and gaining the upper hand.
But, at the moment of victory, while the Five watched in worry, he was ensnared and cast down, stripped of his power and divinity. Severely wounded, he fled, disappearing into the wilderness where he desperately sought to regain his lost power. But he retained his immortality, as Cirrus, despite urging from some of his kind to finish R'rkain off for good, couldn't bring himself to destroy his brother.
So, you see, the wolf gleaming in the night sky could be either Cirrus, mourning his lost brother, or R'rkain, crying out in anguish for what he lost. Or both, for as twins they shared a bond that could not easily be undone. As for R'rkain, he is still wandering the wilds, ancient but ageless, at the head of his own pack.
One day, as Balion observed the Realm, he noticed the elf kneeling by the tree and took an interest in his vigilance, coming to Belgarath in the form of an old man and asking what bothered him so. As he explained, the God decided he would find out what had become of the elf's love. It took him many years, for had other responsibilities that took precedence, but eventually Balion mentioned his search to the Goddess Linath who, after some thought, recalled that the elven woman had passed into the Soulplane over a decade past. She had stood out, the Goddess said, for she had seemed extremely sad, and when prompted about her condition explained that in order to save her lover from certain death she had given her own life.
The two Gods pondered this for some time, thinking how unfortunate it was that Belgarath had no way to know that his love had never truly betrayed him and had instead saved his life. Finally, they came up with a solution: combining their powers, they reached out and touched the elf's tree. Belgarath, who had been keeping his usual vigil, looked on in wonder as his tree and grew and warped, its trunk tripling in size even as the leaves took on a faint glow. When he reached out and touched it his love appeared beside him, as beautiful as she had been in life.
Much later in the day a huge congregation of elves stood in silent reverence around what had just been dubbed the Tree of Souls. Zacyn, looking down on them from far above, smiled. As night fell and the elves began to celebrate, one looked up and shouted with wonder, for in a patch of sky which had previously been quite bare of stars shone a perfect rendition of Belgarath's tree.
Zacyn and Scylla's love for each other grew, and, in secret, they began a tryst that eventually saw Scylla become pregnant. While they had managed to keep their budding romance a secret, Scylla's indiscretion was too much to hide from Time and the rest of the Ten. A furious argument erupted, during which Leartes promised to deal with their offspring himself if they proved to be a threat to the balance of the Realms, despite Zacyn and Scylla's protestations. After Fenrir supported Leartes, Time reluctantly supported him as well, although he decided to wait until the children had been born, and displayed their powers, before he passed final judgment. The rest of the Ten largely tried to remain neutral, though some made their feelings known, one way or another.
Several tense years followed, with the possibility of a fight between members of the Ten, which had previously been unthinkable, becoming a real, nightmarish reality. These offspring, a lightbeast named Daama, and a shadowbeast named Vladimir, grew to be powerful, but not unnaturally so. Leartes, seeing no threat, saw no reason to interfere, and Time, after reprimanding them, gave his blessing to Scylla and Zacyn and reversed his original decree.
As a reminder of the great power and influence of love, and of how close it had come to causing true strife among the Ten, he placed a a pair of starry dragons in the sky as further proof of his blessing upon their union.