Мое творчество довольно тесно связано с деятельностью, которая до настоящего времени являлась основной в моей жизни – лингвистика и письменные переводы, в которой я тружусь вот уже более пятнадцати лет. Писать на русском и на английском языках я начал еще в институте, но только пару лет назад я задался целью превратить это увлечение в профессию.
Fantasy “The Forester”
This novel is the first in a series of tales titled ‘Tales from the Monster Lighthouse’,told by the lighthouse keepers, who, weary of the uneventful, months-long sojourn on an isolated island off the Chilean coast, find it the sole source of entertainment. Before the tale begins, the crew is joined by a freshman from the Chilean Coastguard.
Thefirst tale takes place in the Austrian Alps at the beginning of the nineteenth century. Set amid the deep forests and high mountains, it revolves around the patrician occupants of an old stronghold and the inhabitants of a village lying in its foothills. Biting frost induces the households to consume their entire stocks of firewood by mid December, while an unprecedentedly early and heavy snowfall cuts off the entire area from the neighboring settlements and the usual sources of fuelwood. Left with no choice, men of the castle and the village have the desperate recourse ofviolating an old ban by venturing into the closest pine tree woods, the Grove of Thirteen Witches, to procure lightwood to avert certain death of hunger and cold. The Grove has since times immemorial been considered a sacrosanct shrine of an elemental spirit, The Forester, whose zeal in protecting his preserves was said to know no mercy; anyone attempting an encroachment was sure to meet with an end most horrible.
The group of men, including the Baron of the castle, promptly cut down young trees and carry them to the village in the setting Sun. Next morning a dreadful discovery shocks everyone in the know; the procured pine trees have been overnight issuing blood, suggesting they were live creatures. The following night the eldest son of the woodcutter disappears into the night never to be found. With fears mounting, more children go missing in the village; the existence of The Forester appears to be much more than a superstition of yore. While the peasants are left to fend for themselves, the castle inmates cherish the hope the stronghold walls are strong enough to defeat the assaults from The Forester and assure the safety of their children; a futile sentiment as it shortly transpires.
The legend is further proved a reality when The Forester’s sinister shadow is seen kidnapping more victims, all under eleven years old, in the village. His next strike is dealt to the seemingly invincible castle where he appropriates children, including the Baron’s son. The final count of the snatched children is found equal to the number of the pine trees cut down in the sacred woods.
InthewakeofThe Forester’sferociousravaging, avillagepriest, missing for fifteen years, makes his sudden reappearance. A much darker side of the tragedy is revealed, as the priest declares a century-long curse, not the crusade into the Grove of Thirteen Witches, as the true cause of atrocities. He further confesses having spent all the years in search of the occult knowledge in Palestine necessary to counter the malediction. It was placed upon the people of the castle and the village in consequence of a violent witch-hunt initiated a hundred years ago, when countless innocent women were falsely accused of sorcery, tortured and executed at stake. The inequities had angered the powerful Goddess of Earth, the protector of women, who ultimately engaged weather and The Forester himself to exact revenge of the women.
Thepriest,togetherwiththedescendantsofthethree originalwitch-hunters, includingthelordofthecastle, descendintothecastle vaults, theplaceofthe auto-da-fes of the women, where their souls are stuck in a parallel dimension, oblivious of own death and conscious solely of continued suffering at the hands of their torturers. Releasing the souls does not come easy but the mission is finally accomplished. Thementhen set to delve deeper intothesubterraneanrealmsofthe Goddess of Earth,inthehopeofexpiatingtheforefathers’ sins and retrieving the children kidnapped by The Forester. This presents yet another challenge as the natural forces seem all ill disposed against the daredevils.
Havingsecuredpardon, the Baron of the castle returns home to discover all the women robbed of children are pregnant, which can mean only one thing – the children have returned to their parents.