Cientilla is an Eshu Grump and Mistress of the Gullah Free Lands. She may be the oldest living Changeling in the United States.

Overview Edit


Cinnamon was born on a shrimp boat in the waters surrounding the Sea Islands of South Carolina and grew up immersed in the lore of her people: descendants of the slaves who once worked South Carolina's rice plantations speaking a patois of African, West Indian, Irish and English known as Gullah, or "Geechee." From the beginning she learned every story, piece of occult lore, and craft her neighbors could teach her, all while working on her family's shrimp boat and weaving baskets from sweetgrass and willow twigs to bring in a little bit extra.

The language and culture provided stories and reforms that continually fed the young girl Glamour and she Chrysalised quite young. Afterward she found a whole community of Eshu among the islanders who welcomed her into their midst. Granny Henrietta took Cinnamon (now Cientilla) as her ward and adopted her as her heir.

Cientilla learned that an Eshu enclave had claimed a large freehold on one of the islands for several hundred years, having arrived with the slaves, and rather than traveling the world they settled down together to care for their human kin. In fact they have lived so close to their kin for so long that the Gullah knew that the eshu walked among them and some could even tell when a new eshu "bloomed" and became a "helpful spirit." Many believe the Eshu protect them from "haints," keeping the ghosts at bay by bribing them with stories.

Cientilla learned that the Gullah Free Lands bowed to no other faeries. While commoners claimed sovereignty over various territories during the Interregnum, the eshu of the sea islands claimed independence. Since the Resurgence and the sidhe trying to claim the same places, Cientilla has led the eshu of the islands in refusing to acknowledge them. No overlord has ruled them since slavery was abolished and the eshu will not bow to outside rule again.

Like Granny Henrietta before her, Cientilla appreciates the artistry of well-made baskets and quilts. She learned that if she told good stories when visiting neighbors most would give her a basket, handmade doll, or a new dress or quilt for her tales and many of these items had Glamour within them. She also learned to weave tales for vacationers to whom she gives tours. She has made it her life's work to compile a history of the Gullah people and the eshu who travelled with them. Many of her works reside in the Black History Museum in Beaufort and she is in much demand as storyteller during that city's Gullah Festival each May.

In the 80 years since her Chrysalis she had become one of the most respected lore keepers of the black people of the islands and a world-famous historian and storyteller. She occasionally travels to festivals to tell her tales but prefers to stay in "the place she was put." As far as she knows she is the oldest living changeling in the USA who has not succumbed to Banality and she plans on going another 20 years before even considering "going quietly."

She has a little knowledge in almost every Art but is practiced only in Wayfare and Soothsay. She is a master storyteller and good t basketry and herbal remedies. She used to be quite the dancer but age has made her bones too brittle to risk more than a sedate step or two these days.

Image Edit

Cientilla is a little over 5'2" and barely 90 lbs. Her ebony face looks like a wrinkled apple and her deep brown eyes, lined with wrinkles, shine with intelligence. Her grey hair is kept in a braid on top of her head. She has little patience with courtly garb and prefers to wears men' suspendered pants and shirt with apron when shrimping and a plain house dress when going to church. These days she also like wearing colorful caftans and African-inspired garb as long as they are comfortable.

References Edit

  1. CTD. Kingdom of Willows, pp. 112-113.
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