Moon and Unicorn

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Excerpt from

"The Fall of Ys"

a short story to be published in FIREBIRDS, 2004

Fuite de Gradlon

. . . She never spoke of her resolve, but her father sensed it, watching in brooding silence from the highest tower of Ys as his daughter walked the seawall below. Despite his promise to the priestess of the Sea, he was determined that Myramond should never leave him. When ten years had passed and Myramond reached her fourteenth year, King Gralon began to tempt his daughter, seeking to turn her heart to worldly things. Sumptuous feasts he laid before her, heaping her table with delicacies. But of even the most savory dishes, the king's daughter ate only moderately, preferring simple fare.
Undaunted, her father ordered gorgeous robes made, embroidered mantles and brooches of gold. But Myramond refused all finery, donning only the plain garb she had always worn. Concealing his frustration, the king arranged lavish entertainments of tumblers and jugglers, but his daughter only looked on politely and excused herself as early as she might, for such diversions stirred her not at all. Her heart was set on the Misty Isle.
After a year without success, King Gralon grew desperate. He knew his daughter would depart with the Sea's white priestess when she came unless he could devise some stronger snare. So, one by one, secretly, he called all the finest young men of the city to him, promising rich rewards to any who might win his daughter's heart. One by one, he sent them to her, but all in vain. The king's otherworldly daughter could not be swayed. In the end, nothing could contain the king's rage as, one by one, the young men returned to him, confessing failure. . . .

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This website is © 2 February 2003 by Meredith Ann Pierce