A storyteller regaled us in the Pub late one night. She showed up on a spring night so horrible that no visitors from the nearby Estates was to be seen here. So it was with some surprise that the door opened and she stepped in, wreathed in snow covered furs. She said not a word as she hung her furs near the fire and took a seat in Falstaff’s Chair. Reynard served her mulled wine and he had a gleam of recognition, mischief too, in his eyes. The Old Man muttered something that sounded like a curse under his breath but he too turned towards her to hear what she had to offer us.
She held out to the listeners her empty left hand and I noticed her ring on that hand was highly polished silver with Jormungand carved upon it. Her eyes, dark before, were much darker now. Her tale, she said, was all she owned now as everything else was lost. Not quite the truth in the eyes of the Goddess as her clothing, jewelry, and obvious hale health spoke of a certain wealth still.
Her tale was of a cruel, harsh King who forgot what it meant to be a King, of a Kingdom that had forgotten for too long what it meant to a Kingdom, and of the One-Armed Queen who saved the Kingdom from itself but couldn’t save her husband, the King, from himself so she committed regicide and bore the bloody knife that killed him.
No one said a word, not even The Old Man, though Reynard smiled sadly at her. Your sister said that even the three women we call The Norns stopped knitting…
She drank deep of her mulled wine, got up and, using but one hand, the one the ring was on, put on her furs and stepped through the door into the storm. I think I saw a glint of a silver circlet upon her head as her red hair moved in the wind but I couldn’t be sure.
Until next time, Gus