Ancient Publishing

Serventa, Shadow of the Light

a sample from Chapter 2

As the sun crept away behind the mountains the evening shadows flowed across the loch. It was the time between the dog and the wolf when the fairies came out to play, the nature spirits, known as Seilie Wichts in some parts of Scotland, the watchers of the woods. Beyond their gaze rabbits nimbled under the trees, an adder uncurled its length to slide away under the heather to hide for the night, and bats needed the exercise. Serventa remained where she had been standing, waiting.

A raven circled above the loch to guide the wolves of the night. The visitors were well advised to leave before the nocturne when the wolves would exploit the darkness for their hunt. The people of the Highlands loved that the wolves had been reintroduced and it was very right that they should return to where they had been before, but they could be dangerous. Slowly, Nature would be returning into its balance as it should be, as it has to be.

Serventa turned to acknowledge the fairies after noticing their sparkles of light in the foliage. She bowed with prayer hands, graciously. She respected all living beings and was gracious to all without exception, because everyone and everything has a purpose and they are here for a reason. These were the fairies, thought forms from the Light, little nature spirits of the trees and streams, who could be a little mischievous, but a joy to know. They meant no harm, just a little curious why Serventa remained at the edge of the loch. It promised much. They were busy, ever watchful, looking for an opportunity to make use of human mistakes, and so often fulfilled in their vigil, but careful to keep a distance, vulnerable to the cruelty of people. They were a little afraid of the Blue Men of the Minch as well and always kept a guarded eye on the waters of Loch Ness. Usually, the fairies were inoffensive and the worst they would do would be to tangle the hair of people into fairy-locks or elf-locks while they slept or tweaked their noses as they passed by, but they could be very helpful to people as well. They might also spend their energies making secret herbal remedies from heather and other herbs in their underground homes, fairy mounds, although it was true that some could be spiteful, making all sorts of weapons, such as ancient arrowheads from flint, known as elfshot, that people would find lying about in the earth, so beautifully made they could only have been formed by fairies. These were called in the Highlands of Scotland Saighead sith, fairy arrows. The fairies were always industrious, making musical instruments or composing music, so delightful and as natural as the golden sound of silence. They also liked to spin and weave.

Every day they would take a forest bath to restore their energies. Walking amongst the trees, particularly the rowan tree, which was sacred to fairies, they would sing songs of nature. They knew the virtue of words, the music of sounds, and the healing properties of herbs. It was said that when the fairies played their music, 'The trees would dance and waterfalls would stop to listen, so wonderful the sound'. Serventa returned her focus to the lake and held on to a little piece of bread she always carried as a protection against any possible fairy malevolence. Like all natural creatures they might contain a little naughtiness as well as good and that is the balance of life, very necessary. Serventa turned again and threw them a small gold charm which was prized amongst them all. They did not need people's money and would only use it to give in return for a lost tooth hidden under a child's pillow. One had to be cautious of one thing, though: Fairy Gold was known to be unreliable as they could make it look like gold only then later you would find it made of gingerbread cake or gorse flower. So, they could not always be trusted, but are they here to teach us all to be wise and wary? Serventa stood thinking on this, waiting.

Serventa of Tutulumar book

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