TThe Chronicles of Rosalia Janus Hawthorne: The Welsh Archive

The Chronicles of Rosalia Janus Hawthorne

Part 1.

The Archive of Clan ap Gruffyd

From Gruffyd ap Hughes, the Welsh Archive 8.8.2/495

I have lit a fire on the headland, the sea is pounding, do not desist for the time is heavy, my love. The flame tree, as we call it, is about to bloom, the water is silky green and there are stars in it. Though the moon is waning, we must not be disheartened, my heart, amidst all our enemies, I am here. I shall never give in and I love you. I wake earlier each day for the equinox warms my blood and my dreams are vigorous and strong; I know what is calling us and it is not yet time to cede dominion to that utter darkness. I refute it. I will not have my clan go down again to the charnel house.

My flesh is not young nor is it raddled and my arms are strong, desire is in me, hot and syrupy. Waiting. It is no long easy and I had patience for that task once. Our girl is thriving in the Summerhouse though it be cold and winter still groping at us. She does not seem to mind that at all; her eyes are as deep as yours with mystery upon her like a wave, white and foamy, blue with fish; the dolphins will come this morning as it almost sunrise. A pearly day though it will cut up later and still my bones sing of you, beloved, I feel you coming somewhere, not death itself can divide us. The edge of the world is dancing. Much change sings at the hinges of the universe and I will not heed the warnings of the Alpacheks yet. They are useful to me. I sharpen, each morning, the knife you gave to me; it is a deadly thing in its beauty and its purpose. Two eagle feathers fell here a yestereve ago, an omen, the prophecy moves on inexorably and I tell you, I tire of it. Webbed within the skeins of time, we will cut through this time. I feel it in the child; she is as alien as the meerkat we hunted once and never caught. Her eyes surrender nothing.

You know I can still hear how the music in your voice is great, though they will say I am one sided in this, I refuse to deny your purity in song and truth, In that I remain incorruptible. I will, this lifetime, act upon the tapestry itself for I feel the drive of it, can no longer resist it. The fire was the beginning. The predators will not ignore it, it signals war; nor should they; it is my first statement, first kill; no longer to hide in the crevices of the mountain. Long have I healed here with our daughter, and I tell you true Rhiannon, she is well and will sing the valleys back through time. The time to dissemble is done.

Later I will go down to the sands and set your sea harp down for the wind to play. Yea verily, there will be war, but that was always inevitable. Our little one Anwyn Rose is walking now and she asks of you, questions only you can answer. Her hair is fair and strawberry in hue and she is all moon gold and the creatures of this quiet island follow everything she does. I did not accept that she will be the Chosen One. No more victims for the alter of time, it is done. It is a true gift that she lived at all, when they brought her, fresh from your womb. I counted her breaths with her, as mine, until that tiny ember of her spirit took flame. She was so tiny the women here almost despaired but I knew where and when we forged her, my love, and I know what flows in her veins. If you could but see her it would set a smile upon your face; only in dreams I know, and hard, so cruel on you, her mother, but I swear to you Rhiannon she hears your music. I have watched her little feet patterning to the sound of your sea harp. Thus I have moved the plan forward although Tele, my oldest brother in arms, has warned me that they will keep you longer in the darkness and that thought alone has almost unbalanced me for I know how much you need light. My woman of flowers and fire, keep it alive in memory, in the eyes of your mind, in the ventricles of your heart. I, so much more that all the others who love you, know that you are not able to give in. But you may fade, my sweet, and that is what often drives me forward. They think that by imprisoning you, I will make a mistake. How little do they know of us. Your pain is the probe that stills my every judgement and I would not forswear it for all our lives. I will balance it in time. In time. You will not allow me to be less than what I am… but I will have vengeance when the world dances around the flames of its own destruction. For you and Anwyn Rose, my Rhiannon, I will settle it on my own scales of justice. It is strange but I believe that our daughter understands this as she understands how to breathe. It is so simple to a soul so wise. She does not even have to work at it. Morning has come here now; and it hurts me to think how they will not let it come to you, and in this you must believe, each night I send to you in dreaming, all the gold and green and colours that I know. The flowers that you love, colour, so much colour that you are almost blinded with it; and in that colour I ask you my love: stay but the time, I cannot yet, if ever, bear to loose you. But I know you so well and you have become far too still; therefore I am coming.

I have sent my men to Danger Point and the young man on lookout on Mount Agony reports of odd movements on the mainland, and he with eyes like young falcon; a cousin of your he is, Iestyn. Many of the men and women are dwelling in the sea caves with the old people; they have safe haven there, though not freedom. Hard is the waiting, but the heart will yield to that, but not utter defeat. The young men are rebuilding the fleet your father once designed before the great madness overtook him and he succumbed to that dark woman, regardless, the design is excellent; ingenious and cunning. Forgive me, I know you hate to be reminded of him, but the dead must have their due and he did father you. All the dead, the wise, the stupid and the brave, who are we to judge them; many of their deed s were great, though evil in design much good came from them. Strange. The wise old man told me when I was young that it was my task to make the sacrifices of the dead meaningful. It is a hard old time to be born into, but needs must when the devil rides as the old man said. I laid three stones on his grave last Solstice moon.

I believe the stars themselves are changing now. Those great and ancient star charts are no longer settled, they are moving and no longer reliable. When I was a boy my teacher foretold this. For we were boys once, all my brothers and I; we laughed and played and made mischief in the world of childhood; a grace for which only now am I truly thankful. For my father’s patience alone, I am indebted, he was secure enough to let us roam free like untrammeled animals and he bestowed upon us that confidence that will make a wild boy into a resilient man. I miss him, still. Laughter and the hall and the harp and the sweet warmth of my mother’s smile. Some of the clan distrusted my father’s judgement in his sons; he chose to disappoint their singular expectations. A man of deep ironies, he knew the ambitions of his kinsmen only too well. But I and my brothers were innocent of court politics then; and he ensured that we stayed that way in all the country of a childhood unbetrayed by malice. A great man and a wise father. All those gifts that you never tasted my Rhiannon, would that I could give them now. Not so, you are matchless my love, perhaps because you grew up so differently to me. Thus I will give our daughter a childhood beyond cruelty, a garden to grow and to plant each flower of her innocence and a time to play in the world without recourse to fear or hiding; or the ancient curse that we broke to set her free into this world.

Wait for me, Rhiannon. Swear it on the blood bond we forged in the cells of our daughter. Do not lose faith with our credos, though even I know the time is growing quickly and liquid and not even love can solidify the tide that pulls our blood. O beloved I will not write again for a time. It is close to coming to undo me and I cannot permit myself that luxury, not yet. Not ever.

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