Herein is the ill-fated romance between Ariana and Samuel, the first half of the story that continues in Silver Borne. This is also an origin story of sorts, because how he met Ariana is also tied up with the story of the witch, his grandmother, who held Samuel and his father for such a long time. I have to say that if it had not been for the constant requests for this story, I, usually a teller of happier tales, would have left this one alone.
As a historical note—and for those who need to know how old Samuel and Bran are—Christianity came to Wales very early, perhaps as early as the first or second century with the Romans. When exactly the events of this novella took place, neither Samuel nor Bran could tell me. Bran just smiled like a boy without cares—so I knew it hurt him to remember—and said, “We didn’t pay attention to time that way. Not then.” Samuel told me, “When you get just so old, those first days blur together.” I am not a werewolf, but I can, after all this time, tell when Samuel is lying to me.I do know that the events in this story happen a long, long time before Moon Called.