The Flight of Faelön

Being the first leod, to wit, the first spoken ballad, 

of the tale of Þrar, King of Hrethendawn, and his seed and of their war 

against the fell forces of Duzk-ccyrak. 

A pæyre of wings and gilded sword, 

a Torith stone of Gildmedran, 

adorned the belt she so oft wore, 

a hoar upon her gold-flecked hæyre, 

and light born in the talisman. 

In eyes of silvery blue and gold 

were told the tales of many years. 

A thousand autumns had she seen, 

when green had left the e’er-fære knolls, 

and radiant light beheld her tears. 

Those kinsmen iron left unhewn

were strewn in haggard wød-halls dark. 

For evil wrought its work in grey –

the fey beheld his homeland torn; 

his daughter Faelön would depart. 

Her aim was Erian ‘neath the sky – 

where fly the Faery, Nynth, and Swan. 

In Erian the Glimmdrad bright 

may light the evening with their song 

and bring a hope to Hrethendawn. 

Ai! Þrar of Hrethendawn, 

beyond your land of river and tree 

there lies a Greater King, and One, 

Whom sun abides by his command, 

and soon will rise on thy victory. 

Ai! Elonru Argæth-Eär

the Ålwÿr fain have faith in thee – 

Ai! guide the wings of Faelön strong, 

and song of end by Glimmdrad fære, 

the Ragnarök by thy decree. 

Then Faelön gales of darkness fought 

aloft, a laden Hawkinfeye; 

her burden great for what was left – 

bereft her homeland of her kin: 

those who remained had fallen prey. 

At last she faltered, weary worn, 

and torn, her feathers, dampened, hung. 

She tramped through miry marshes fell, 

where dwell the beasts of Ashniron, 

and such foes clave with Áthunan. 

Its blade so keen cut through the beasts 

which ceased to swarm against its gleam. 

For Áthunan was blessed by King; 

in ling and woodlands was it forged, 

its sharp edge cooled in mountain springs. 

Then Faelön trod through Isydar, 

the elentar upon her brow, 

arrayed in aureole bestowed 

where flowed the river Čeruäd – 

and blessing on Þrar’s noble vow. 

His enemies would dauntless fight, 

and flight would end their battle song. 

And in the stillness of the eve, 

would grieve the noble, hoary Þrar 

for silence of great warriors gone. 

To battle, trothed he grimly then; 

to end he’d fight with blade before. 

His wings, should they their strength still lend, 

would fend his word from battle-heat 

and steadfast would withstand the war. 

The elentar he wrought within 

the dimness of the Mountains Naer. 

In morning’s light of weeping dawn 

the song of King rang through the æyre, 

the stone bestowed in daughter’s eyrie. 

An omen of a heavy grief, 

relief would never come in haste. 

This dowry to Þrar’s noble seed 

would lead it true through darkness deep 

and lands of bitter, barren waste. 

The stone she bore through peril great – 

abate the darkness would its light: 

called forth from memory of the tales 

where gales of darkness failed to shake 

the walls of Hrethendawn by night. 

And in the mists a swirling gleam 

unseen by eyes save hers alone: 

allured her gaze to faded glow, 

a flow of moonlit ebbing tide, 

its purpose yet to her unknown. 

A soft, stern voice warned Hawkinfeye: 

draw back and stay her straying hand. 

And yet it reached to touch the orb 

which o’er her hung in softest dress 

and whispered subtle, fære demands.  

She harkened to its gentle pleas, 

released the cord about her brow, 

and offered up the elentar 

to star-like guise of silver stream, 

which offered power for the vow. 

Her finger brushed the silver strand, 

and understanding filled her gaze. 

Her wonder paled to trembling fear 

as clear the orb-light then became: 

a wight entrapped her in its rays. 

Her cry of anger shook the gloom; 

her doom ordained, it laughed in scorn. 

Alluring shapes with merry tune 

that drew around them shadowed cloaks 

now crouched, unveiling truer form. 

She bowed her head bereft of crown; 

a sound’s caress alit her eyes, 

in sorrow rimmed and fraught with tears, 

her years of noble service drowned 

in binding pall and færer lies. 

A sweet voice sang a dirge of death, 

with breath now bated, Faelön heard 

the Glimmdrad’s song of grieved farewell; 

the spell now shattered, Faelön woke 

and grasped her hilt with prayerful word. 

From sheath of fine chalcedony, 

the ebony of night blade cleaved; 

her hands unbound by fateful song 

the wrong accursed nigh glint of dawn, 

the wight e’re long of prey bereaved. 

It hissed, unfurling acrid fumes, 

and plumes of stinging blackness rose. 

It transformed into face of death 

and lath of darkness blotted stars 

and manifested wrathful foe. 

The wight she fought till break of day, 

when golden shaft pierced sable gloom; 

her doom she wot now all too well: 

the fell usurper clenched the jewel 

which paled to shale as shadow loomed. 

Ai! Elonru Argæth-Eär, 

si-elentaril an namén! 

The words of bitter prophecy, 

aloft the sea in ages past 

did last their time to bear her bane. 

Her fierce cry sent forth Áthunan 

among the blackened mist of death. 

The blade of life she so oft wore, 

now bore the scar of final tale 

and scourge of shadow’s dying breath. 

The wraith, in kindled flame of Light, 

its might accursed by Brighter Dawn, 

the elentar it crushed with hate – 

abate it would in fatal blow 

the flight of Faelön with her song. 

The beating heart undone by bane 

that fain, her father did bestow 

upon his daughter grim and fære: 

despære now clutched the precious stone 

and crushed her in its lurid glow. 

The pallid hue of mortal sleep 

to keep her brow in listless rest, 

a silent watch in ashen cold, 

foretold in ancient dismal rune 

to still the heart of warrior’s breast – 

it’s leaden grip announced the knell 

that quelled the trembling of her hand. 

In peace beyond the mortal realm, 

the helm thereof her spirit left 

and rose to star-trod færer land. 

Her noble father’s gilded halls 

enthralled in strains of deepest grief 

were clad in sorrow’s blood-stained robes. 

He chose, the mighty warrior Þrar 

to guard his fleeing subjects lief. 

Upon a steed in armor clad 

Þrar gathered all those loth to flee. 

The lamming of the darkened power, 

dour in the quest for pride, 

assailed the Noble Prophecy – 

the tide was turned ere all the vales, 

availed by guard of Hrenthendawn, 

had blackened by fell evil’s sword. 

The portals of bold Medorath 

were naught but sundered beams anon. 

With fyre they scorched the citadel, 

an ell could not be found uncharred. 

The shadows swept the crumbling halls 

now sprawled upon the meadowfeld, 

where death befell the hoary Þrar. 

The blade of steel his warriors clasped, 

still fast within their stiffened hands: 

while Hæachlar, beloved son, 

undone by scars of bloodshed deep 

led what remained to outer lands. 

His burden for his homeland great, 

the weight thereof he carried long. 

For Áthunan was brought the knight, 

the blight upon its tempered steel 

was told of in the Glimmdrad song. 

A scout among the wyld-lands cursed 

unearthed the cast-off precious stone, 

ill-bartered by the errant maid, 

inlaid with tale of woeful doom, 

within its face her toils shown. 

Her temple of world’s mortal form 

adorned with stain of crimson deep 

the servant gently bore away: 

arrayed the fære-folke buried her, 

among the trees they bid her sleep. 

Then, hastily an army rose – 

their foes they guessed of evil deed. 

For Áthunan they found unsheathed, 

bereaved of noble owner fære: 

ill-bode the sword of dire need. 

An army swift, but swifter still 

the fell, cold pall chilled Hrethendawn. 

They came too late the children bright, 

their light shone dimmer by those ones 

whose presence in their midst were gone. 

Who, mourning, left for lochs of gold 

unsold to shadow’s prying eyes,

where boughs of silver veins endued 

eschewed the darkness by their guard 

of scrolls forbid’ to scarlet lies. 

The Glimmdrad, eyes of amber gleam, 

for king of Hrethendawn they found 

the son of flightless, fallen Þrar. 

Afar the hills rang with lament 

of heir to throne and sorrow-crowned. 

With Áthunan he bowed his head 

and pledged himself unto the One 

Who guided flight of Faelön fære 

through læyre of hellish creatures foul 

and loosed her with the Glimmdrad’s song – 

Who heretofore blessed noble Þrar 

in star-lath kindled lore foregone, 

Who would fulfill the Ælden Troth, 

the oath to maiden lain to rest,  

the Hawkinfeye of Hrethendawn. 

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