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Now here is a brief scene from Chapter 4, “Ruins, Relics, and Revelations.” Keeper Scarlet Connely, a dear Irishwoman over a hundred years old, has been sent to Ireland to gather refugees to take to the sanctuary world of Lantamyra. She is staying at the house of her trusted follower, Elizabeth Caldwell. Here is the excerpt:
Elizabeth’s daughters gathered around Scarlet’s rocking chair. Little Jane was small for her eight years and did not hesitate to climb up and sit on Scarlet’s lap or to lean her head against the old woman’s breast.
Twelve-year-old Victoria asked for a story of faraway worlds.
“I want a story, too,” Helen, the ten-year-old said, “a story of fairies and magic.”
Jane brushed a lock of dark hair away from her eyes. “I want to hear a song first.”
“Well, well, wishing well, I’ll drop my bucket in the well and draw a magic tale to tell….” She hummed a few bars then began to sing softly:
“Along a winding shaded path
As twilight deepens into night
The trees begin their evening song
And from the branches fairies come
To guide me with their glowing light.
Now strolling down this magic path,
Where flowers only bloom at night,
I watch the fairies tender care
Of blossoms in the pale moonlight.
A flicker here…a glimmer there
Of wings a-flutter on the air.
From hollow trunk and mushroom top,
The fairy folk observe my walk,
And as I pass beyond the woods
Into a glade, I hear
The music of the pipes and flute
Come drifting to my ears.”
The children clapped their hands.
Fiona set a tureen of soup on the dining table and told them supper was almost ready.
Scarlet smiled at the girls. “I should have time for one more poem.”
The emphasis on the word time made Victoria’s eyes light up. “A tic-toc poem?”
“Yes, twelve little verses.”
“One for each number on the clock,” Jane added.
“A sad poem or just another sweet one?” Helen asked.
“Helen! Mind your manners,” Victoria scolded, “and be grateful that she shares it.”
“I am grateful!” Helen glared at her older sister. “I was just hoping for a true story.”
Scarlet smiled thoughtfully at Helen. “In truth there is power…in time there is truth. Here are twelve verses called The First Sword of Power… perhaps you’ll see the truth of it. Now, Jane with your fingers count the verses and make sure there are twelve.”
She rocked the chair back and forth to set the tic-toc rhythm:
The sword was forged,
A kingly blade.
He honed it…then
He knelt and prayed.
To God, he swore
To use it right
And swing the sword
With all his might
Against all foes
The king shall stand!
With power sworn
To use for good,
The kingdom thrived;
The castle stood.
But ev’ry king
Must pass in time.
The clock of Death
Must always chime.
And so it was,
His son became
The youngest king
To use the name.
The young king sought
The old and wise
But found instead
A path of lies.
“Oh, King, you’re strong,
Your sword has might!
So, use the blade!
You have the right!”
And so the king
Did set the course,
Attacked and killed
Until the day
That he could claim
The power of
A vast domain.
The people forced
To serve his rule
Grew hateful of
This king so cruel.
Then swords were forged.
They honed each blade,
And then they knelt
And prayed and prayed….
Jane looked up and smiled. “Twelve, right on the button.”
Helen clapped and nodded. “That was sad.”
“And powerful,” Victoria added quickly.
Jane’s smile turned to a frown. “How many times do they have to pray before they learn swords are bad?”
Scarlet burst out laughing and hugged her. “Now that is the question.”
A TALE OF TWO WORLDS, Copyright 2013, Waterwyk Arts
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Blessings of life,