[image description: Twilight. A cheery-looking young woman in a pointy black hat with flowers in its band, a black sleeveless tee, black shorts, and black work boots rides side-saddle on an old wooden broom. She is very high up, above the cumulus clouds and beneath the stars. She’s waving. Text reads, “114, Daria Ducharme ~ The Small God of First-Time Fliers”]
Some gods are gods for a lifetime, gods you win or are won by and pledge yourself to with all due devotion, serving at their altars from the cradle to the grave. Other gods are gods of the moment, here to see us through a transformative experience and then leave us on the other side as someone new, someone other than we were before. They are the gods of the first day of school, the first kiss, the first love, the first loss.
Or, in the case of dear Daria, the first flight.
Because she sits astride a broom, many take her for a god of witches, or of charwomen, but neither of these is quite correct, unless those spellcasters or hearth-sweepers are taking to the air for their very maiden voyages. Because she is a god of firsts, and young to the eye, many assume that she must be inexperienced, naïve, an easy god to take advantage of. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Daria isn’t jaded, because she’s worked hard to retain the sense of innocence and wonder that makes it possible for her to truly connect with the people in her keeping, to soothe their nerves and laugh away their worries, but she isn’t new here, either. Daria has been shepherding people through their first flights since the Wright Brothers. Lovely boys. Very sweet, very generous with their time in the brief hours they spent together.
Her time with her faithful is never long, but those who have flown with her once will never forget her again.
Daria is always prepared to take to the skies.
Artist Lee Moyer (13th Age, Cursed Court) and author Seanan McGuire (Middlegame, Every Heart a Doorway) have joined forces to bring you icons and stories of the small deities who manage our modern world, from the God of Social Distancing to the God of Finding a Parking Space.
Join in each week on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday for a guide to the many tiny divinities: