Page:More Celtic Fairy Tales.djvu/65

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43
Powel, Prince of Dyfed

had of yore been one of his followers. And thereupon he became grieved for the wrong that he did in keeping with him a boy whom he knew to be the son of another man. And the first time that he was alone with his wife he told her that it was not right that they should keep the boy with them, and suffer so excellent a lady as Rhiannon to be punished so greatly on his account, whereas the boy was the son of Powel the chief of Annuvyn. And Teirnyon's wife agreed with him that they should send the boy to Powel. "And three things, lord," said she, "shall we gain thereby—thanks and gifts for releasing Rhiannon from her punishment, and thanks from Powel for nursing his son and restoring him unto him; and, thirdly, if the boy is of gentle nature, he will be our foster-son, and he will do for us all the good in his power." So it was settled according to this counsel.

And no later than the next day was Teirnyon equipped and two other knights with him. And the boy, as a fourth in their company, went with them upon the horse which Teirnyon had given him. And they journeyed towards Narberth, and it was not long before they reached that place. And as they drew near to the palace, they beheld Rhiannon sitting beside the horse-block. And when they were opposite to her, "Chieftain," said she, "go not farther thus: "I will bear every one of you into the palace. And this is my penance for slaying my own son, and devouring him."

"Oh, fair lady," said Teirnyon, "think not that I will be one to be carried upon thy back."

"Neither will I," said the boy.

"Truly, my soul," said Teirnyon, "we will not go." So they went forward to the palace, and there was great joy at