Myths, Legends, and Fairy Tales

Original versions and stories incorporating them,

from all times and parts of the world.

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A New Story

In Myths, Legends, and Fairy Tales

April 30, 2023, in Myths, Legends, and Fairy Tales

“Soul Arbitration”
by Rustin Lovewell

Hel arrives first.

The ground at the northern beachhead opens like an inverted gate, rocks and black pebbles sloughing away in a fall that drowns out the crashing surf.

My skin prickles.

I clutch the armrests of my stone seat as the goddess emerges from the depths,

moonlight reflecting off her bone crown.

Mist clings to her garments like phantom hands.

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A Reprise

In Myths, Legends, & Fairy Tales

July 23, in Myths, Legends, & Fairy Tales

Home is the Sailor”

by Brenda W. Clough

Odysseus lay still, struggling for every breath, and recited to himself all the perils he had escaped: Scylla and hungry Charybdis, the Cyclops, angry Ajax, Hector with his bright bronze sword, kingly Priam and bright doomed Achilles. I, Odysseus, I survived all these. I came alive out of Troy. I returned home safe after ten years’ journeying. And I will live to laugh at this fool injury. Heroes cannot die in sickbed, with weeping all around. We die in the bitter clash of armor and swords on the plains of windy Troy, leaving a corpse to be fought over by gods and men. Or we yell brass-lunged defiance and go down in a wallow of cold water as the bronze-headed rams cleave the ship into planks and floating rags…


A New Story

In Myths, Legends, & Fairy Tales


May 30, 2022, in Myths, Legends, & Fairy Tales


“Tyrian Purple”

by T.R. Frazier


I’d seen the sea wear many colors: the heavy gray of the lead vats I stirred each night; the sullen yellow of the unripe dye they held; the shifting green as the dye warmed and matured; the gentle blue as the long-awaited prized color began to emerge.

But the day the Cilician pirates bore me away, the sea wore Tyrian purple.


The illustrations are based on photographs used with the kind permission of  Mohammed Ghassen Nouira.
Please check out his facebook page where he has chronicled his years of work renewing the ancient methods of creating authentic Tyrian Purple dye.




A New Story

In  Myths, Legends, & Fairy Tales


March 20, 2022, in  Myths, Legends, & Fairy Tales


“Major Difficulties”

H.B. Stonebridge


Some folks would tell you Major Graham got what he deserved for calling up the Devil. But Devil is an ignorant man’s word for something he don’t understand. Major just got tangled up with something he didn’t know nothing about, and it bit him.

We like to think we know what we’re doing, but mostly we don’t, and don’t know we don’t.   And the wisest way to deal with the Devil is not to do it. I can do it, of course, otherwise not doing it wouldn’t count.

I just know better.

Most of the time.




A New Story

In Myths, Legends, & Fairy Tales


March 10, 2022, in Myths, Legends, & Fairy Tales


“Looking Glass With Golden Flecks”

A.J. Cunder


In the stillness before dawn, when the world sleeps save for fairies and magic, the queen stares into her mirror.  Eldritch characters glow along its edge as they did long ago, when as a young woman she took a wrong turn down her old village road and came upon an herbalist’s cottage…

…and a mirror caught her eye. She’d see her futures there, Every path altered by each decision she made.

But the cost?


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New Story

 June 30, 2019, in Myths, Legends, & Fairy Tales

“Four and Twenty Blackbirds”,  by Alexei Collier

Beneath her cloak, Marta clutched a bag of pale river stones as she followed Johan through the forest in the dying summer light. Every twelve paces, she dropped one stone. As it fell, she whispered its number.

She had dropped twelve since they’d left the path. She was afraid to count the next stone. Mother had told her to beware that number, twelve and one. It held a terrible power.

So Marta dropped two stones, murmuring, “Twelve and two.”

Stones had long memories, Mother had taught her. They would guide Johan and her back home.

Once it was safe again.

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September 30, 2018, Myths, Legends, and Fairy Tales, “The Mirror Crack’dby Jordan Taylor

As Morgan Roswarne moved, shadowy forms flickered in and out of existence around her.

My interview with her parents had not prepared me for this. How powerful must her affinity be, to call these forms out of the aether?

I was engaged to teach her to control her magic. But I didn’t even know how she called these clustering shadows to her. How would I teach her to keep them at bay?

August 30, 2018, Myths, Legends, and Fairy Tales, “Rapunzel — A Re-Windingby Joan Stewart

A woman tended her home and garden, and followed the common customs of the time in the common way, yet she found herself gazing more and more at the uncommon walls of thick old stone surrounding the land of the old woman right beside her.  Surely, they held something marvelous, but she didn’t dare approach the small, formidable figure swathed in black which sometimes in the early morning came out of the woods, tended to mysterious business within those walls, and then with the setting sun walked back into the woods.

Well.  When she was back in those woods, how was she to know who was peering over her wall? 

            But deep in those wild woods, in a wide glen encircled by a fence of woven branches hung with feathers, bones, knotted roots, and stones, in the center of the glen, in her dwelling, the eaves and windows hung with things swaying and clacking as with a breeze… the old woman knew.

June 25, 2018, Myths, Legends, and Fairy Tales: “Hima” by Sam Muller

Hima barely noticed the dwarf.

She saw him now and then at dinner, crouched by Mother’s chair. He looked at no one and no one looked at him.

He was a fixture, like old furniture.

Had there been more than one dwarf, once? At first she wasn’t interested enough to ask.

Later she was too frightened.

April 23, 2018, Myths, Legends, and Fairy Tales: “The Witching Hour” by Ekpeki Oghenechovwe Donald
I stood balanced at the top of the oldest palm tree, the one that grew at the south end of the village. I was in my element — pitch black night. This was my dawn. The murmurs of glowing spirits mixed with the chitter of living insects.

The hoot of an owl reminded me there was work to be done, battles to be fought — silent, undeclared, but raging all the same. And old Mama Ishaka was on the other side of them. With a sigh, I leapt from the tree, fell free, and caught one of the power lines that led to a human spirit. The link was strong. The call of this spirit sang the music of its soul to me. It called me back home.

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October 31, 2017, Myths, Legends, & Fairy Tales, In a Field of Bone-Bonnets“, by Aimee Picchi


The old witch climbed into bed, drew her quilt to her chin, and spoke. The hut settled on its haunches, listening.

“I know in my bones my end is near. You have served me well, with more care than I would ever have imagined. But you are a magicked thing.  You need a witch’s power to remain alive. I’ve used the last of mine to grant you three days to find a new witch.”

Then softly she mumbled some last advice.








Jan. 31, 2017: Myths, Legends, and Fairy Tales: Thief or Felon Bold, by Alter Reiss

She laughed.
“We are within the hill and beyond the stream that stains like blood,” she said. “I will tell you now one true thing: when you bargain with those who live within the hollow hill, you give us things which it amuses us to take, and we give back things which it amuses us to give.”



Jan. 30, 2017: Myths, Legends, and Fairy Tales: “Fruits of Victory“, by Jonathan Shipley

In the darkness overhead, Ilianthe saw a point of light flash into being.

  Flash and hold steady.
Another way station in the void.
Another star, created of angel light and dragon fire.
Their victory allowed them to create stars, to reshape the Cosmos  Hundreds more would be scattered through the darkness of the heavens, and the Holdings would no longer hang cold in the lightless emptiness.  Yet victory had not brought peace.


Jan. 24, 2017: Myths, Legends, and Fairy Tales: “Black Annis and the Barguest”, by Sarah L. Byrne

They call me Black Annis, the village folk do.   I walk the woods alone, my voice gone dry as old leaves, and I’ve not forgotten how to make me a glamour when I need one, with claws of iron and hair like duckweed.

But what does that do against a bargeust from the lands to the north, fangs like blades, breath a bellows blast, eyes of flame?


Jan. 10, 2017: Myths, Legends, and Fairy Tales: “Godmother Death”, by Kate O’Connor




At first, I thought I had been sent for her. She was so very small, barely a breath in her tiny body. But no, it was her mother, eyes fixed on me, on the tipping point between life and death. And her mother said, “Will you look after her?”




digital painting “I Waited”, by Kim Myatt


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Oct. 18, 2016, Myths, Legends, & Fairy Tales: “Laila Tov — Good Night — “, by Robert B. Finegold, MD


The small sward of earth and patchwork hut where the crippled tailor and his demon bride once lived was shunned for its evil, or so the villagers would claim; but whether it was for the evil that once dwelt there or the evil that was inflicted upon it none would say.


wild nunt for magazine

June 14, 2016, Myths, Legends, and Fairy Tales The Wild Hunt of Sliabh Mannan“, by Philip Brian Hall

When a Goddess asks you to stop a God…

out of brambles title pic finalMarch 5, Myths, Legends, & Fairy Tales: Out of Brambles, by Leenna Naidoo

A short, spooky Halloween story to make you smile.





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