A Little Foreword ...
These forays into the art of the literary fairy tale were originally published by Thistledown Press in 1998 as The Serpent Bride and Other Stories From Medieval Danish Ballads. They were inspired by the ballad collections and translations of Axel Olrik, E.M. Smith-Dampier, and R.C. Alexander Prior, all of which ultimately owe their existence to the work of Svend Grundtvig. They’re quite different from my usual writing for adults: light, romantic, and influenced far more by Eleanor Farjeon than by Tolkien, Glen Cook, and C.J. Cherryh.
This particular story was originally titled “Sir Karel’s Wake,” because for no particular reason I used a Victorian translator’s version of the name.
II: Sir Karl's Wake
"I will die, I tell you. I will die!" Sir Karl kicked at the leg of a chair, and scowled. "I will. Without Kirsten, life is nothing!"
His mother sighed at her loom. There was no trial so great, Lady Brenda considered, as a son in love.
"Don't be so foolish, dear....
The author has set this story to be visible to logged-in users only. Log in to read the rest of this story.