Welcome back to Medieval Monday. For December we are posting an excerpt with any kind of celebration in it. My guest today is Ruth A. Casie with her medieval short story The Druid Knight Tales.
Blurb: The Druid Knight Tales
After a year of searching, Maximilian, the druid Grand Master, finds the sacred mistletoe destined for his soul mate shriveled and dead. He must journey to the Otherworld and tell the Ancestors of his failure.
Ellyn of Brodgar is an exceptional healer. But each healing kiss depletes her energy and brings her closer to death. Ellyn needs to find her own healing power before it’s too late.
Max and Ellyn are tossed into the Otherworld and have until the third sunset to appeal to the Ancestors or be lost forever. Together they find love, and as the last rays of the third sunset slip away, both are willing to sacrifice their hopes, dreams, and lives for the other. Do they have what it takes to escape the Otherworld and begin their life together?
The Druid Knight Tales
“You knew, didn’t you?” She waited but a heartbeat. “You made certain where I stood and when the portal opened you wished me a safe journey.”
“I knew once you spent time together and learned to depend on each other you both would make the right decision. Ellyn, I know you and Max are to face challenges in the future. I will be there, always,” Doward voiced with quiet determination.
“Thank you, Doward.” She placed her hand on his arm. “We appreciate your devotion and friendship.”
“I cannot change what is fated but I will do what I can—”
“That is more than anyone could ask.” There was nothing she could do about the future. It would unfold as it was destined. Unless…she shaped it. Gave it direction. Knowing what the future held allowed them to prepare for it. Every moment was precious and she would make every one count.
She saw Max up ahead and her chest squeezed tighter with pride and love. He was her heart and together they could face anything. She glanced at Doward beside her. With a friend like him maybe the three of them could shape their destiny rather than be at its mercy. It might take a lifetime but something inside her said it was worth a try. They caught up to Max and the others.
The Grand Master stood before the bonfire and removed his tunic for everyone to see the sacred runes tattooed across his back. He picked up a lit branch. With his other arm he gathered Ellyn to his side. She ran her hand down his back, which made his muscles flinch and his tattoos softly glow.
He bent to her ear. “The runes warm to your touch.”
“Perhaps it is a sign we are truly soul mates.” She kept her eyes forward.
The sign. Of course. He smiled and raised the torch. “Is there anything else you want to tell me?”
“Her name will be Rebeka.” She stared straight ahead, not meeting his eyes.
“Who?” he asked, a startled expression spread across his face.
“Our daughter. Arik’s soul mate.” A satisfied smile played on Ellyn’s lips.
“She will be a mighty woman,” he teased.
She looked into his eyes. “She will be the best of both of us. Now, finish the ritual. We have important things to…celebrate.” She stepped aside and planted her staff deep into the ground between them.
He covered her hand with his. The staff glowed but only for them.
“Hail, Guardians, we thank you for the power of air, fire, water, and earth.”
“For all you have given to us, we thank you for the year,” the congregation replied.
“For the new year we make this oath. We pledge ourselves to the Guardians, the Ancestors,” he looked down at Ellyn, “and to each other. May our hearths and homes be safe and strong for another year.”
“For all you offer us, we give thanks for the year to come.”
He tossed the torch onto the pile and listened to the people shout with enthusiasm. He gathered Ellyn into his arms. “To hearth and home, my love.”
They sealed their pledge with a kiss.
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Hope you enjoyed this excerpt! See you next week!