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Liath Mac Medb
by on February 3, 2019
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My excitement roused me from my sleep early the morning of the interview. Foreign royalty! How often does a chance like this happen? Almost never I would imagine, not to humble book writers in any case. It is a unique opportunity, and while interviews are not normally something that I publish I simply can't pass up an opportunity like this to go alongside my travel guide to Maréire. After my morning breakfast and coffee, and a read through the local news it was not long before someone from the castle came to get me. Until now I hadn't seen one of the Knights of Fianna in person, and quite frankly I'm not sure I was ready for the experience. It felt like meeting a folk hero. The Knight stood several inches taller than me, was broad chested, and wore armor of a silver color that shined brighter than any steel, his flanks covered by an armored skirt of emerald green with white edges. He bade me to follow him, and I did so no doubt grinning like a giddy schoolfoal.
As the two of us walked the streets the town was just as busy in the early morning no different than any other time of the day, except the docks which were much busier than usual as the fisherman were already setting sail. The local ponies do not eat the fish, but there are a few griphons on the island that eat them, and the rest they trade with other nations. It is one of the few resources that get shipped off of the island, as trade with Maréire is very scare as Gallowglass does not leave the island except for incredibly rare circumstances and even then never in it's raw state.
The Knight explains to me that the Queen is much to busy to meet with someone so I will be meeting with one of the young Princes. They are two brothers, an Earth Pony and a Unicorn and are currently in their mid-teens. I will be meeting with Prince Liath, who is around sixteen and the more sociable of the two so I am told. I questioned the Knight about why Prince Liath was chosen to speak to me, and I was told that the young stallion volunteered. It's very rare that the island gets visitors and the young Prince was simply curious as he'd never met somepony from off the island before. I conceded as I had little choice.
Approaching the castle itself was a sight to behold. It had a massive courtyard out front, with a large fountain in the shape of a harp called a cláirseach. The craftsmanship was incredible and looked to be gold plated, with the jets of water shooting upwards from the inside of the frame to make up the harp's strings. The castle itself was large and wide, most of it made out of white washed stone. The windows were framed in gold plated Gallowglass, making them shine almost magically in the morning sun. The two large front doors looked to be made of green painted oak with a handle of polished steel. Two knights pushed open the doors to reveal the interior, just as impressive as the exterior. Marble pillars lined the entryway that matched the floor. In the center was a long carpet of emerald green and gold weaved in an intricate design. Along the walls were many tapestries that I can only imagine had great cultural and historical significance. Guarding the hall were several more Knights with swords in sheathes across their hips, but in their hooves were long spears.
I was led into a side hallway, my stoic guide not much good for conversation, until we reached room with a wooden table and several chairs. In two of them sat two young stallions I can only assume are the princes. An Earth Pony with a chestnut coat, a dual colored mane of red and dark brown, and a white streak down his face to match his fetlocks, and probably the most brilliant green eyes I've ever seen. The other, an onyx black Unicorn with a horn of bright silver, his mane was grey like a cloudy night sky and seemed to shimmer like starlight when the sun coming through the window hits it. He has bright violet eyes, and white fetlocks like his brother. Both of them have a lock of their manes braided tightly that hangs down off of the sides of their heads. The knight salutes, banging a hoof on his breastplate. "My apologies Prince Sainglend. I did not expect you to be here." The knight says with a bow as he speaks to the black stallion.
"I can go where I wish, Sir Finn. That, and Liath would not shut up about the outsider so I decided to sit in on the meeting to make sure he doesn't say anything foolish." Explained the black Prince with a haughty tone.
The chestnut prince laughed with a roll of his eyes. "You're so uptight, what could I possibly say?" Prince Liath speaks much more casually, and even the way he sat in the chair seems relaxed and aloof.
"The point is, don't mind me." The violet eyed stallion blinked.
"You're awfully mature for your age." I commented.
"We're princes, we have to be." Responded Prince Sainglend, who then took a leather bound book and opened it to near the middle. It looked to be written in the native language, so I couldn't even tell what kind of book it was. He then raised a hoof and waved it dismissively at the room as if telling us to get on with it.
"He's just going to ignore us and pretend he isn't interested." Prince Liath grinned and gave his brother a side glance.
"You and your subjects have been very friendly and hospitable, I appreciate it." I bowed and thanked the prince.
Liath shook his head. "They're not my subjects, and drop the formalities I get enough of that around here. Just talk to me like you talked to the innkeep at the Knotted Cask." He smiled in a genuinely friendly manner.
I cleared my throat nervously at the request, looking at the knight who stood guard by the exit and then at Prince Sainglend. Neither of them paid any attention. "Alright then, Liath. Tell me a little about yourself." I said as I really prepare to take notes.
"Well, I'm one of Queen Maev's two sons, as you can guess." He chuckled. "My birthday is March 11th, and I'm sixteen years old. I like running, laughing, relaxing, exploring, and making ponies happy."
I jot down everything he said, which is why this reads a bit different to things that I usually write. "What about you?" I turn to Sainglend, who ignored me.
Liath is about to open his mouth when Prince Sainglend's horn glows green and prevents his brother from speaking. "Say anything about me and I'll hold you upside down while I dump that bottle of mead you hide under your bed from mom into the garden." He hissed while narrowing his eyes at his brother. Liath can only nod quickly and the magic fades.
"Sorry, he's got me by the flanks on that one." Prince Liath took it in stride with a grin and a shrug.
"A-anyway. What are your duties as a prince?" I asked trying to get back on topic.
"I'm kept pretty busy. Unlike somewhere like Canterlot, it's real unlikely that my brother and I will ever sit on the throne, so we're taught how to be useful to the Queen, current and future. We'll be kept around as members of the court but unless you're the Queen being of royal blood doesn't actually mean much here." Liath explained.
"What about specifically? What do you do that is something your brother can't, and vise versa?"
"I help the Druids sometimes. I was gifted with the ability to use Geasa. I've helped swear in some of the newest knights. Like him." Prince Liath nodded towards the knight by the door, who shifted in his armor.
"He also likes to sneak out and run around town like a moron." Sainglend said while turning a page in his book.
"I'm helping ponies. I put a Geas on myself to help me find those in need." Liath narrowed his eyes at his brother who wasn't even looking.
"Which you just learned how to do. If you messed it up, it could kill you one day." Sainglend retorted.
"What is a Geas?" I asked quite curious as I had never had them explained to me, and now seemed like the perfect opportunity.
"It's a promise with Maréire. I vow to do something, or have someone else do something which forms a bond with Maréire and the receiver of the Geas. You don't want to break them, it's bad news. Maréire sets the consequences, so there's no knowing what kind of punishment you'll get. Except for the one every Queen takes, that punishment is always death." Explains Liath.
"Are you worried about your mom dying?"
Liath shakes his head violently causing his rather messy mane to be tussled. "Not even a little. In fact she might even outlive both of us..." Liath's ears droop a bit.
"Change the subject." Commands Sainglend.
"Your turn. Tell me about you." Liath leaned forward with his eyes shining brightly with curiosity.
"Well, my name is Wander Lust. I am a writer and explorer from Canterlot in Equestria. I travel to exotic locations and write about them." I explained as well as gave him a bit history about my own life, which I will leave out of this transcript for the sake of length. This is not my autobiography after all.
"How long do you plan on staying?" Liath asked.
"A week or two, I expect." I responded in kind. Such a length of time may be a bit excessive but I am very much enjoying my time here and don't want to leave.
"In that case, let me show you around. Sightseeing by royal carriage doesn't sound terrible does it?" Liath grinned, practically beside himself with excitement. He seemed insistent. Sainglend huffed at his brother's suggestion, but didn't say anything else.
"What about your duties? I couldn't ask you to go gallivanting off with some foreign stranger."
Liath waved a hoof dismissively. "Nonsense. Maréire wants you to see her, if it didn't, your boat would've been dashed across the cliffs when you got here. Besides, I need to get out of here for awhile. It's settled...I just have to talk my mother into it." Liath scooted his chair back and stood up. His brother reluctantly followed after closing his book, and the two princes leave after the knight opened the door for them.
"They are always like that..." Sighed the knight who until now had rarely spoken. "Come. I will escort you out." The large stallion commands and leads me to the gates of the castle after explaining that I will be summoned should Prince Liath convince his mother. So ends my meeting with the royal princes of Maréire. An interesting duo, and despite Prince Sainglend's prickly demeanor, I can tell that means well. My impression of Liath was that he was one of the most innocent and kindhearted young stallions I've had the pleasure of meeting. Whether it was youthful naivete or something else, I can tell that he will make a lot of people very happy or at the very least do his best to try.
Topics: backstory, history, lyle