“Then how can I help you?” I asked the lad.
“Sometimes they send me to fish in the river, by the bridge.”
“So why don’t you just run away when you go there?”
“Would that it were so easy! They have me under a powerful enchantment, so that I may only go to the river, and when my buckets of fish are full, return directly.”
“What can I do then?”
“At midnight on the full moon, come and look for me there by the bridge, and bring a horseshoe on an iron chain. Hang it round my neck, and I will be able to escape. And you’d best protect yourself in like manner too, or they’ll take you in my place!”
The full moon was only two days away, so the following morning I went to the ironmonger’s store, and bought two horseshoes and some iron chain, preparing the two ‘necklaces’ as the lad Angus had instructed me.
The appointed night arrived, and I made my way along the road to the bridge over the river. There I waited in the moonlight for midnight to come around, wearing one of the horseshoes on its chain about my neck.
Sure enough, at the allotted time, Angus appeared nearby with two wooden pails and a fishing rod. He was down on the rocky shore of a fishing pool, and he sat upon a large stone, casting his line into the water.
Continue reading The Lad on the Knoll. Part II by Chris Pollard