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There Be Draguins

A young boy's destiny.

This is the first chapter of a book I am writing for my grandson. Let me know what you think.


June 16, 1611 was a dark and rainy day in the tiny Irish village of Cluain Tiobrad. Its lush green pastures made its Gaelic name of “Well of the Meadows” appropriately given. On most days with less rain it was often a pleasant resting place for travelers between Monaghan and Castleblayney, in County Antrim, heading on the main road towards Dublin. 

The farms are small and barely support the families who rely on them. Structures made of strong walls with thatched roofs and shuttered openings which did little to delay the weather’s path. Mostly large common rooms for living and a few smaller rooms where provisions were kept. Small stone walls provided barriers to keep the horse drawn carts from wavering from the paths but livestock found little trouble in wandering. 

It was a hard life with little respite from disease, famine, and wars fought for land between local lords and tax collectors. For some, whose destiny was long ago determined and who must suffer the consequences of their failures, it was even more treacherous. It was a time of castles and Kings. It was a time of fantasy and fables. It was a time of Draguins.

Chapter One 

On this morning Soren MacDonnell of the clan MacDonnell, rose before sunrise to fork the hay in the barn before his morning chores. It was the day of his 14th year and he was still despondent over burying his grandfather the week before. His memories only increased the pain of the many years ahead he must face without him.

From the moment he was born his grandfather, Ewan MacDonnell took him to his knee and throughout his life spent each waking moment preparing him for the days ahead he must endure. Each hour was filled with the history and tradition of the clan MacDonnell and each day was filled learning the skills of survival.

Their bond was strong and it was just such a memory that instinctively caused him to fall to his knees and roll to his right as the dark shadow and flapping of wings passed through the space where he had been. 

The shadow was enormous. The wind from the wings blew barrels over and made the loose timber rattle as it circled inside the barn over him. This one was the biggest yet. This was the first one he must face alone. Soren flipped his pitchfork in the direction of the shadow above him. Then he spun and grasped for his grandfather’s sword.

The wrapped leather grip with twisted wire dug into the skin in the palm of his hand making sure it wouldn’t be knocked loose easily. The blade was 3 inches wide and almost 36 inches long. It had been rolled and turned 1100 times by a long forgotten Celtic blacksmith and had a blood gutter running the full length of the blade to make it easier to pull out.

The hot breath of the draguin had the stench of death and made his eyes tear up. The wail from its lungs was deafening within the walls of the barn. Soren whispered his grandfather’s name, turning to face the wailing beast and flapping wings as his grandfather had done so many times before.

This story is protected by International Copyright Law, by the author, all rights reserved. If found posted anywhere other than with this note attached, it has been posted without my permission.

Copyright © 2010-2040 LDJohnson (Dreamcatcher) - All rights reserved, including all copyrights and all other intellectual property rights in the contents hereof.

The contents and composition herein are not to be copied, reproduced, printed, published, posted, displayed, incorporated, stored in or scanned into a retrieval system or database, transmitted, broadcast, bartered or sold, in whole or in part without the prior express written permission of this author.

Unauthorized duplication is strictly prohibited and will be considered illegally plagiarized and subject to any or all damage claims, and is an infringement of National and International Copyright laws.

This composition may have been inspired by something seen or heard at a time or place heretofore forgotten. In all cases, credit has been attempted to be properly given and when so given, shown as a note or in footnotes. Failure to give proper credit is a mere oversight and/or unknown to this author and not an intentional act.

It is intended to reflect an original work of fiction or based upon personal experiences. Names, characters, places, and descriptions of incidents are products of this author's imagination, fictitiously expressed, personal experience expressed either in detail or loosely referenced, or merely the humble opinion of this author. Any similarities to actual persons or events are coincidental and subject to this author's determination.

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