A Chapter by Elf at Heart


The Abbey of the Virgin Mary

Father Redlen


It was early morning but the sun’s pale light and the chirp of birds were enough to awaken Father Redlin from his slumber.  He rose from his straw cot and washed his face in a small basin of chilled water.  He then kneeled below the window of his room and prayed to Jesus Christ and the Virgin Mary.  After his prayers were complete, he rose and crossed his chest.  He then walked out of his modest chamber, entering a corridor where cold emanated from the rock walls and the smell of candle smoke and incense were almost overpowering. 


Redlin walked down the hall, through an open door and into a beautiful garden in the Abbey’s courtyard. This is where the monks grew all of their food and where they took their meditations beneath a large oak tree.  On the other side of the courtyard he walked through a pair of double doors into a large room filled with rough wood pews facing a simple alter.  Redlin knelt and briefly prayed once more to a painted wooden statue of the Virgin Mary and then walked to main doors leading out into the surrounding countryside.  He pushed the ironwood doors open and stepped out into the full light of morning.


The sun was sitting above a wall of snow capped mountains to the east and a blanket of thick green pines stretched below the hill where the abbey was built.  Redlin deeply breathed the crisp air and surveyed the countryside in greater detail.  Below, where the bottom of the hill met the edge of the forest, a brook gurgled from a small huddle of moss covered rocks.  Around the thin stream of clear clean water grew tall verdant grasses and bright flowers.  He spotted a young doe lopping through the undergrowth and a bird of prey swooping into the forest’s canopy after a hare or other small rodent.


Father Redlin truly loved the beauty of the land and the wild creatures that lived upon it.  The abbey had been in existence for almost a century and was known as one of the most secluded in Britain.  Many of the brothers in this abbey took various vows including the vow of silence because they knew they would be removed from many of the world’s distractions.  He was happy in his life devoted to God.  Of course, it was difficult to give up the comfort of woman’s smooth flesh and the bitter warmth of ale running down your throat but after a few years he felt at peace as he had never done before.  Calm and cheerful, he continued to look out over the dark green land before him.


Redlin heard a loud thrashing in the undergrowth below him and saw a small flock of crows take flight from a dead tree nearby.  He scanned the wood line below as the sounds grew even louder.  Then he saw the brilliant flash of metal in the sun as over thirty men burst across the shallow brook at the bottom of the hill.  All of the men were dressed in full plate armor and carried either long swords or crossbows.  One of the men, upon seeing the figure of Father Redlin above, called to his comrades.  Two men aimed their crossbows in his direction.  Redlin turned to run as a heavy bolt flew over his head.  The second bolt caught him in the shoulder.  He stumbled but kept running as warm blood ran down his back.


When he reentered the abbey he called the alarm, “The French are here!”  In a matter of moments, the hallways were full of monks but by then the enemies were at the main doors, hacking and pushing their way in.  A monk knelt in front of the doors, hands clasped in prayer.  The doors burst open and enemies flooded in like rats.  As they charged forward, the soldier in the lead slashed downward as he passed the praying monk, sending his dark red blood into the air.  Father Redlin began to run once more, his vision slightly blurred from loss of blood.  He could hear cries and cruel laughter behind him as he ran back into the courtyard.  He was halfway to the other side of the abbey when he felt the sharp impact of a second bolt against his back.  This time he fell, his face thudding into the black earth of the garden.  He rolled over, clenching his now bloody teeth as the arrows his back snapped.  Father Redlin looked up at the yellow and orange sky above but then a dark shadow fell across him.  A young soldier came into view.  Redlin stared up at the young man as he drew a hand ax and raised it above his head.


© 2011 Elf at Heart

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wow! well written and really descriptive! i was so intrigued in it the whole time!

Posted 12 Years Ago

Very well written! It has a beautiful story line so far and I absolutly can not wait till you put up chapter 1! Keep this up!

Posted 12 Years Ago

...whoa this was totally epic!! UPDATE SOON PLZ!

Posted 12 Years Ago

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3 Reviews
Added on November 4, 2011
Last Updated on November 4, 2011