On the twelfth night of December, Lucia, the youngest daughter of her house, is given a gift of light by her mother so she can wake early the next morning to deliver cakes and coffee to the rest of her family. Lussi, a spirit of darkness, steals Lucia’s light. Dismayed and embarrassed by her loss, Lucia sets out to find Lussi and recover the stolen gift. Along the way, Lucia traverses many lands and meets many strange and beautiful beings. Eventually, Lucia arrives in Lussi’s realm, where Lussi proudly displays Lucia’s stolen light. When Lussi becomes distracted, Lucia takes back her mother’s gift but finds the light burns no longer. Heartbroken, Lucia returns home, where she admits to her mother that she lost her gift. Instead of being upset, Lucia’s mother praises her. She tells Lucia that because she held true to the virtues of purity, charity and hope, the light is not gone, for it burns deep within her. The three virtues arrive, bearing gifts for Lucia. Purity brings a dress of white, Charity a sash of red, and Hope a wreath of evergreens bearing many candles. Lucia dons her new attire and lights the wreath.

Excerpt from “Lucia”:

   Lucia happens across a countryside recently besieged by war. There, she spies valkyries, winged-maidens who decide the fate of men who have fallen in battle, moving warily about the field.


  In the center of the battlefield, Lucia finds the spirit of Hope. But Hope is lost. He has given in to Despair, the queen of the valkyries.


   Seeing Hope so overcome, Lucia determines she cannot leave him, she will stay and see him through his malaise. Lucia’s loyalty and devotion banishes Despair, releasing Hope from her clutches.




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