Before there was the novel, there were the stories...

by Nan Hawthorne, who also writes under Christopher Hawthorne Moss, Books and Stories b ChristopherHawthorne Moss at

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Old Stories: Shannon Recovered

arkness. Complete darkness. Then a flash of light. A feeling of warmth. No thoughts, only sensations. A girl's face. Darkness again.

He woke sometime in the evening. Three people sat at a fire. There was an old man, a young man, and a girl. It was a home; he was laying on fox furs. It was necessary for him to speak…


Falni looked up, startled. She lay down her bowl and kneeled next to the strange man her brother Snorri had discovered floating on a board in the sea a month ago. "Father, he spoke! What did he say?"


Ragnar squinted hard. "He's not speaking Norse. What did it sound like?"

Something in the head of this man clicked and he repeated his words in a different language.


Snorri jumped up "He's speaking Saxon!" He came up to the man. "You are in the home of Ragnar the Fisherman," he said in Saxon.


"In Norway."

"Norway…no, I don't know…how…who?"

Falni looked up at her brother. "What has he said?"

"He wanted to know where he is. Shall I question him?"

His father nodded, serious.

"Who are you? What is your name?" Snorri asked.

"I…am…who am…I…oh, God, who…I don't….who?"

Snorri looked alarmed. "He knows not who he is!" He continued to question him but the strange man said little more than, "I…no….don't know."

Falni touched her brother's arm. :We must leave him to sleep. We can give him a name - what shall we call him? Maybe what he said first was his name? Ichaun…Ikkom…Ihom…we can call him that.

Snorri explained the girl's words to the man. The man looked puzzled. Then as the men sat back at the fire, he pointed to himself. "Ikhomm?" and pointed to the girl. He waited for a reply.


And the darkness again.

When Ikhomm awoke the next morning, his mind was clearer. He could remember last night and knew his new name. He sat up and looked around. There by the fire squatted Falni, stirring something in the little kettle by the fire. She heard him stir and turned around. She said something in Norse, and he hared his name. Then she seemed to remember he couldn't understand. She sopped and thought a moment, and said in Saxon, "Good morning." The she laughed, and Ikhomm laughed and she brought him a bowl of stew.

That evening Snorri talked to him for a while, and he learned some Norse. He was puzzled as to all that was lack in his mind, but he liked his new home and slept that night very easily.

QUESTION: Which would you like to read after this story line is finished, the next stories or this story as it was retold more recently? See poll in the upper right.

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About the author

Nan Hawthorne now writes under the name Christopher Hawthorne Moss. You can contact Christopher at .