Saturday, January 31, 2009

The Tale of Rhun Hir ap Maelgwyn

‘Seek it then, foolish King, but know what fate awaits you’ the hag screeched in the shadows of the hovel. ‘Know that others faster and stronger than you have looked for the sword of Rhydderch Hael, and never come back.’ The fire in the middle of the floor flared in eldritch blue, and the hag seemed to dance amongst the embers. The wind outside howled louder as it streamed down the sides of Yr Wyddfa, and pounded on the hide entrance. Rhun Hir ap Maelgwyn kept his eyes on the hags face no matter where she moved, his distrust made the greater by his friends advice “fear the hag Rhun. Watch her case she steals your treasure.” Rhun had puzzled at this and questioned his friend. “Your life Rhun, your life!” Now he was alone half way up the side of the mountain beneath Clogwynn Du’r Arddu, the “black cliff of the darkness”. And in this hovel Rhun began to think he had found the heart of that darkness.
‘Tell me hag where it is. Then I can leave you and this filth’ said Rhun in a harsh whisper. His fear was driving his temper and he was struggling to keep his peace with the hag.
‘Disgust, foolish King? Not disgust. Fear I think. Fear. And yet where you will go for Rhydderch’s sword is darker than the rocks of Yr Wyddfa, foolish King. Oh yes.’ Her eyes seemed to burn brighter like a cat’s. How he longed to get out of here and run back down the mountainside. It was only his wiseman’s council which had told him to make the treck alone, otherwise the hag would never be found. Her hovel was said to never to be in the same place the next day, and the ground showed no signs of fire or of people passing. But up hear she lived beneath the howling mist ridden hills, beneath the cliff of the darkness.
‘Tell me where to find it. Your silver is there’ he threw the bag on the far side of the fire where it chinked to a stop.
‘Ah very good’ she said ‘but not enough. Promise me a promise Rhun ap Maelgwyn and I’ll tell you of the way to the Dyrnwyn sword.’ The sword of the white hilt. The sword of fire that would bring him his Kingdom.
‘I give it, hag’ he said. To be done and out of here was all he could think of.
‘Not soo quick young buck, for favours three you’ll agree, then the sword that burns the darkness fires the soul, will in your hand be control’d’

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