Lore Ipsum: Atalanta
Hello! Today’s card follows the myth of Atalanta, the huntress.
As always, this myth was recently recounted in vlog form by Dael Kingsmill, which i highly recommend you watch before you proceed to the card. I won’t be covering the whole myth in detail, only the aspects my cards drew from, and she tells it far better than i ever could. Let’s get started!
Atalanta was born to a king who wanted a son, and was abandoned and left to die of exposure. A mother bear found the child and took it upon itself to raise her as its cub for a while, until she was found once again and taken in by a human family. Atalanta grew up to be a master huntress and went on dozens of adventures.
At one point, when a massive God-summoned boar was terrorizing the city of Calydon and destroying everything in its path, a gathering of dozens of heroes from all across the realm was convened. Even against staggering numbers the boar evaded capture, until Atalanta struck the first blow, weakening it enough so that it was finally brought down by the group.
Atalanta eventually reunited with her father, who promptly took her back in and imposed that she would get married straight away. She agreed to it, but only if her suitor was quick enough to best her in a race. Many failed this task and were slain in the process, until Hippomenes prayed to Aphrodite to help him win this race in the name of love. Aphrodite granted him three golden apples which, when laid on the race track, would be irresistible to Atalanta and force her to stop and pick them up. Hippomenes ended up winning the race but neglected to give thanks to Aphrodite, who had her revenge by enticing them to consummate their vows in a cavern sacred to Artemis. Artemis, being the goddess of virginity who doted on Atalanta, was none too pleased with this affair, promptly turning them into lions for the remainder of their lives.
I wanted to make Atalanta a powerful card to reflect her many adventures, while putting in as many references as possible.
The cast cost refers to her mother bear, without whom she might not have existed at all.
First strike refers to her first strike against the Calydonian Boar, and haste to her many race victories.
Becoming a lion, the curse of Artemis, is a death trigger for the sake of simplicity, inspired by Thragtusk. I’m unsure if even with all this she should cost only two mana, as the Bear cost is pretty restrictive, but three seemed right as the common bear traditionally costs two.
Until next time!