May 19th 1536, was I can suppose, the day that The King totally lost his reason. So, now it is our turn to feel his guilt, manifest in slaughter. Nearly all the monasteries in Wales have been destroyed, by order of King Henry! Only a few of the Welsh Fathers have chosen to remain, fleeing the kings’ retribution by seeking sanctuary on pin pricks of rock, like Ynys y Niwl.
Being forced to pass my days on this island, means there is some delay in the receipt of news of the world beyond. Only when somebody, usually another member of the same Order, reaches The Monastery that I hear any information about distant parts, it’s frustrating…
Indeed, it’s taken a couple of years for me to hear that King Henry has executed Queen Anne; chopped her head off no less! If it wasn’t for that wet and bedraggled Monk in a faded blue cassock, who washed up on the island three days ago, I’d still be none the wiser. The Abbot doesn’t realise how much his fellow Brother’s like to gossip and I like to listen. However, those papist Monks who sought sanctuary in this old Viking refuge of Wyndwrayth, have mostly found only death, at the hands of Millar. I suppose I should have at least a modicum of sympathy for these poor souls but I don’t, the centuries of his slaughter have taken a toll on what little humanity I ever had.
The ‘Dissolution of the Monasteries’ continues apace. Millar finds times like these, stimulating but I can hear the fear spreading by whispers in the cloister. Everybody knows that Henry’s men will be arriving on the shores of Llyn Isaf before the summer ends and then, what will be left of this place?
So much for the mercy of their Lord. If he exists at all?
I have read many of the brethren’s holiest books and concluded they are simply folk tales, like parents recite to their children, in essence, to teach and frighten them into obedience. They would have done better, to frighten them by telling them tales about The Millar of Souls, at least he is real! When all is said and done, their Bible is like many other holy books. Mystery meets cruelty in a clash of unprovable events and long forgotten people, in the hope of giving birth to another religious movement to challenge the power and orthodoxy of the last doctrine.
My years have taught me, that this process usually ends up with many more dead than both sides can afford to lose. Civil wars and conflicts often herald the decline of their civilisation. It seems this latest argument of power is between two codes of the same fantasy religion, ridiculous!
I rarely see Millar these days and in truth, I am not aware of what he does for the majority of the time, up there in his tower room. When the Monks were slaughtered by the King’s men and they left the island with their plunder, he seized that feature of Wyndwrayth for himself. He pleasured himself creating a couple of slaughter rooms, practically placed and within easily accessible locations in the tower.
I am becoming aware of his growing agitation, which usually indicates he smells the approach of a death and hence the opportunity to feed. Over the long years that I have been his guardian, I have learnt that this is the point where I have to keep my wits about me and be ever more vigilant. Up until now, I have found no limit to the true depths of his depravity. With each life he takes, he not only grows stronger but larger and more formidable. It is my place to keep control of him, to contain his size and strength, thus preventing his free reign of terror being unleashed upon the earth.
Well, at least I have a good spot to bury the corpses where the soil is soft and mercifully deep. I did try to keep score once but it all became far too pointless, so these days I just make educated guesses. My latest best guess is 410 souls, accumulated over our time on Ynys y Niwl. I’ve considered those numbers for quite a while and upon reflection, 410 is not too high a number for the years. So, maybe I’m not doing too bad a job when it comes to keeping the barrel lid on Millar’s homicidal tendencies.
I have realised during the passing of these endless years, Millar and myself are inexorably bound together, in a form of mutual dependency. The world we inhabit together, lies somewhere between ‘tick and tock.’ Neither in this world, nor out of it, neither alive nor dead. An empty space furnished by imagination. We are sustained by Millar’s life force, which in turn is fed by his rather disgusting delight in slaughtering the innocent, preferably as slowly as possible, to extract the most horror and pain from his victims. He is like some monstrous, hairless, yet slimy feline, toying with his prey.
Millar seems content to live in his imaginary world within the tower, furnished by those memories of the souls he has taken. Over the years my skills at their manipulation has increased. I can now conjure up people for him to order and dispatch again and again. Those poor tormented souls will never be released.