juli 26, 2003

The hunt in the forest

At this he tied his horse to a tree at the side of the track and set off into the undergrowth. His wife rose to her feet to follow him, but as she did so, she noticed that the troll child was lying where it might at any moment be kicked by the horses, who were uneasy bbecasue it was near. Just the thought of touching the changeling made her shudder; none the less, she moved it a little to the side out of range of the horses' hooves.

"Here's the rattle our boy was holding when you dropped him" called her husband from within the woods, "So I'm sure that I'm on the trail." She hurried after him, and they walked for a long time in the forest, searching. But neither troll nor child did they find, and when the night drew in, they had to return to the horses.

The wife wept and wrung her hands. Her husband walked with his jaw clenched tightly and gave her no word of comfort. He came from a good and long-established family, which would have died out had he not got a son. Now he was filled with anger at his wife because she had let the child fall to the ground. "She should have held on to the child whatever happened", he thought. But when he saw how she despaired, he did not have the heart to reproach her out loud.

He had already helped her up into the saddle when she remembered the changeling. "What shall we do about the troll child?" she said.
"Yes, where's it gone?" he asked.
"He's over there, under the bushes."
"Well, that's the right place for him", said her husband, with a bitter laugh.
"We'll have to take it with us though. We can't leave it lying in the wilderness."
"Oh can't we?" said her husband, and put one foot in his stirrup.
Posted by andrewb at juli 26, 2003 09:38 EM