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Ondine was a water nymph. She fell in love with a mortal, married him, and had his child. When she started losing her beauty he cheated on her. Ondine cursed him, stating, “You swore faithfulness to me with every waking breath, and I accepted your oath. So be it. As long as you are awake, you shall have your breath, but should you ever fall asleep, then that breath will be taken from you and not given back, such as what was taken from me.”