In time mortal man multiplied, and they traveled the seas under the guidance of Manannán mac Lir. When the Sons of Mil arrived on the shores of Ireland they found the Tuatha De Danann in possession of the land and engaged them in battle. The Great Mother’s Second Children recognized they would thereafter be in decline, for their seers foresaw that mortal man would become legion, more numerous than the heather on the hills. They invoked the Great Goddess Danu seeking her advice and judgment, and she convened a conclave of the Gods at which all of the Tuatha De Danann attended.
Discussion and debate ensued for three days and three nights. There were two distinct and different schools of thought. Some argued that war was the answer and that to the victor should go the spoils, for through strength of arms the vitality and the protection of the world was certain. Others argued that mortal man should be forced into a peaceful coexistence, for through their combined strength, defense against the Fomori if they should return was assured.
The Great Goddess Danu merely watched and listened, and she duly noted that throughout the conclave Cernunnos had not uttered a single word. She then spoke and silence settled over the gathering. She asked Cernunnos for his thoughts. All eyes turned to the Goat Headed God, many suspicious, for his origins and race prior to ascension were well known. When he spoke, his guttural voice carried to all, and none interrupted.
“There will be mortal men proud enough to believe themselves Gods, and some brave enough to endure much and accomplish it, they are beautiful creations indeed. Free will is wisdom, for the balance will always strive to regain its natural state. The Tuatha De Danann have never truly had leeway to freely choose their own destinies, therefore they find it difficult to see this gift handed so easily to the Third Children of Danu and seek to either destroy them, or force them into servitude. This conclave has not been about the fate of the Tuatha De Danann, but that of mortal man. I say that the Second Children of Danu should now be given this choice, for whichever path they choose they are still one side of the same coin. The dominion of the Third Children is a certain future. Those that choose to war against and harm mortal man, so be it. Those that choose to aid them, so be it. Dominion to all touched by the sun and the moon should go to the Third Children, and the hollow hills and other places below the surface to the Tuatha De Danann.”
Many of the Tuatha De Danann looked away at his words for they sensed the unadulterated truth in what he said. Some were ashamed, some merely accepting. The Great Goddess Danu smiled, for she saw wisdom in the words of Cernunnos. The assembled Tuatha De Danann were then transformed by the Great Goddess Danu into the fairy folk, later known as the Sidhe.
Those who were more inclined to help man formed the Seelie Court, and those more inclined to harm the Unseelie Court, and they departed for the realms below. The Sons of Mil then took the lands of Ireland for their own, and their encounters with the Fair Folk are well documented, even up to today…