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Authors: Rosalind Hyson

Aela

BOOK: Aela
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ALEA

ROSALIND HYSON

Published by Palmer Higgs Pty Ltd

First published 2013

© 2013 Rosalind Hyson

The moral right of the author has been asserted.

All rights reserved. Without limiting the rights under copyright restricted above, no part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in or introduced into a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise), without the prior written permission of both the copyright owner and the above publisher of this book.

This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents are a product of the Author's imagination, or if real, are used in a fictitious context.

A Cataloguing-in-Publication record is available from the National Library of Australia.

ISBN:

978 1 925 11213 9 (pbk)

978 1 925 11214 6 (ebk–ePub)

978 1 925 11215 3 (ebk–mobi)

Designed, typeset and printed by Palmer Higgs

palmerhiggs.com.au

Distributed by Palmer Higgs Books

phbooks.com.au

I dedicate this book to my husband, mother, family and Shirley.

CHAPTER 1

The Beginning

I
t was dark and extremely cold as I stood gazing at the sombre monolith of Silbury Hill, standing, brooding and mysterious, isolated from modern times, splendid and enigmatic. Guarding the secrets of its past, the reason for its existence and purpose, from modern contemporary times and countless invasive humans that have either lived nearby or passed through on some migratory progress. I was shivering at the time, feeling extremely cold and questioning why I was standing there on a freezing day in the middle of January gazing at the structure.

Peter and I had decided to take a few days trip into the countryside, to have a look at a small piece of England. These thoughts were far in the background of my mind, as I stood and stared at Silbury Hill. The largest human-built monument in the whole of Europe of the Bronze Age, appearing before me. My intellectual thoughts were thinking on this plane, but I felt a stirring of my primal emotions, as if there was a reason why I was there at the time. I heard a rushing sound in my ears and I sensed that my body was moving, although I knew rationally, I was stationary with both feet firmly planted on the ground. This strange feeling of movement and momentum took over, as I appeared to be transported, backwards in time. It was a very unsettling experience, that somehow or other the clock was turning backwards.

A gigantic force was pushing me further down a dark void. It appeared as though I was experiencing this movement over a long stretch of time, but in actual fact it was only a few seconds. I heard a voice calling, ‘Aela, Aela, where are you?'

Before I knew it, I was standing next to a lake, which was completely enclosed by a dark brooding forest. The sun was shining on the surface and every now and again a slight breeze disturbed the surface of the clear crystal waters.

I thought, ‘I shouldn't be here.' I was meant to be back at Silbury Hill, once more climbing into the car as soon as possible. But no, I was here near a lake, a mysterious lake of blue water. I then looked down, I found I was wearing a coarse, woven long robe. Imbedded in the borders of the garment, were beautiful symbolic patterns of very bright colours such as red, blue and orange.

I experienced the warmth of the sun basking on my face and I raised my hand up to touch my nose and cheeks, and felt the smoothness of my skin. I was totally confused, this was not me, I was meant to be wearing a coat. The general light should be dark, cold and miserable but instead there was bright warm sunshine. From the forest, I could hear the birds, this was obviously a beautiful summers day and I sensed that I was young again and feeling much more energetic within my body. Looking down once more, I saw my feet peeping from under my long dress. I felt so alive and full of vigour, as if I could run for miles without getting tired. I decided to move forwards, to walk towards the lake, as at that stage, I was standing a little distance away, on a slight rise of earth.

As I walked, I noticed that I had sandals that were strangely platted on my feet. This could not be, as previously I was wearing boots, but now there were sandals on my feet. This was certainly very strange, but at the same time exciting, as though somehow or other I had gone back in time and had become rejuvenated. Now I had my life ahead of me, full of youthful joy ready to face the unknown world hoping for adventure and love.

The sheer thought of these happenings infused my senses so I drank the cup of young life eagerly. I felt a certain
laissez-faire
attitude. ‘Oh well, things don't matter so much now as I have my life ahead of me.' I felt so effervescent, as though I could climb that nearest hill that was a short distance away without much physical effort on my part.

Again Aela heard a deep masculine voice calling, ‘Aela! Aela! Where are you?'

Aela's heart started beating rapidly, as she recognised from the sound of his voice, that it was Rom calling her. Instead of running towards him, she decided in a split second that she would hide behind a huge oak tree, and peep out to see which direction he was coming from. ‘Rom! Rom!' Aela called back, raising her voice and projecting it into the air.

Rom yelled back, ‘Aela, you are here, close by. But where are you?'

She cried back, saying, ‘Come and find me if you can!' and immediately ducked behind the tree again and stood very still against the trunk trying not to breathe heavily.

Rom stood still for a moment whilst deciding what was going to be his next move in this situation. He was very tall, he had a broad muscular torso, strong arms and long well shaped athletic legs.

Rom's face was wide and broad, with high cheek bones and a square jaw, framed by jet black hair reaching to his shoulders. His clear blue eyes looked straight ahead staring at the scene in front of him as well as the area immediately around his person. He was always on the alert for any sudden appearance of a human enemy or a wild animal who was about to leap at his throat and kill him.

At this point Rom decided to enter into the game, Aela could actually hear his footsteps coming closer and closer, as he deliberately made a noise with his feet, letting her know he was on his way. Rom then said, ‘Call again, Aela!'

This request was greeted with a deadly silence as she had no intention of letting him know where she was hiding. Rom sensing this, called Aela's name again, but this time with a sound of impatience in his voice. ‘Oh, come on Aela, come out of the forest and let me know where you are.'

For some reason this irritation in his voice gave Aela a sense of satisfaction and a general feeling of importance. Rom decided to change his tactics, when he realised that Aela wasn't going to co-operate and now stopped placing his feet heavily on the ground as he slowly made his way forwards, hence there was an eerie silence. Aela realised that she was at a disadvantage with her brightly coloured garment with the red, blue and an orange border, as she certainly wasn't going to blend into the colours of the dark forest.

The next few minutes seemed to be an eternity, so Aela impatiently peeped around the front of the tree and peered out of the forest towards the lake, but there was no Rom in sight. Well, she thought, the best thing to do is to emerge from the shadow of the tree and slowly walk towards the lake.

Aela had only gone a few paces when Rom appeared suddenly at her side, and grabbed her placing his arm around her waist. ‘Got you, my beauty!' he exclaimed.

Aela looked up at him sideways and said, ‘I am not your beauty; I am mistress of myself.'

At that reply he let out a hearty laugh, saying, ‘Very well. I am aware that you are your own person.' He momentarily relaxed his arm around her waist, so she quickly leapt forward and sped towards the lake, with Rom running behind her.

They both arrived at the lake's edge at the same time, laughing and panting together. Aela then said to Rom, ‘It is wonderful to see you again, as it has been so long since I last saw you.'

Rom replied, ‘Yes, it has been many days. I have been walking in the forest thinking very hard about my future and of what was going to happen to me.'

Aela felt nonplussed about this, as she thought he should be thinking more about her.

Rom went on to say, ‘Aela, I am not in favour with Brude, the High Priest at the moment. I am living with my father's brother and his clan, as you know, ever since I was a little boy when my father was killed. My mother died soon afterwards of a sickness, but I think she had a broken heart.'

Aela dropped her head, sighed and said, ‘I remember their deaths, and the sadness of the people when both your parents died and the huge ceremonies that was performed in the Sacred Grove on behalf of them.'

Rom bent down and looked very closely into Aela's eyes. ‘I must leave this place, as I do not feel I am welcome here by Brude and his followers, especially now I am an initiated warrior. I have heard that there is another sacred place over the hills, where there are huge standing stones arranged in a circle and the people there worship the sun. I am thinking of going to that community to see whether they would accept me.'

Aela then felt very fearful and her heart began to beat faster. ‘Don't go, Rom. I'm going to miss you so much! Don't go. Stay here!' But she could see from the steely look in Rom's eyes that he had made up his mind and he was saying goodbye to her forever.

This was something she didn't want to happen as at the moment, Rom was the only man in the community that she really liked. Aela started to cry, she heard herself saying, ‘I don't want you to go.'

Rom looked quite perplexed and surprised at her reaction. Truthfully, she was a bit amazed at the depth of her own feelings, now she knew that he had decided to live somewhere else. She had not realised just how important Rom was in her life as she had always prided herself of feeling totally independent of people generally.

Rom went on to say, ‘Aela, you have a good position in society with your family, whilst I am alone and have nobody to support me, especially since the death of my parents. You are very beautiful and I know there are a number of other men who would like you to be their partner.'

At these words Aela immediately felt very angry. ‘How dare you say that! I am not interested in those men. As far as I am concerned, I will choose my partner and nobody else will do that for me.'

Rom then gave a hearty laugh saying, ‘I pity, the poor man who thinks he can outwit or subdue you.'

Aela then shook her head saying, ‘I have control of my life and future, and nobody else is going to tell me what to do, whether man or woman.'

Rom looked at Aela saying, ‘I must go now as I have also heard that where these people live, near those gigantic standing stones, they have a magical Sacred Sword, in the inner sanctuary of their temple. The owner of the Sword, then can gain wonderful strength and agility to fight any enemies.'

BOOK: Aela
6.86Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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