Hard the day when first I brought
Dark Eva in my house to dwell
Black the woman’s heart that wrought
Such a cruel and malevolent spell.
…Lir departed Lake Devra with his company and travelled to the king’s house where he was greeted by Red-Bove’s reproach for not having brought his children with him.
“It was not by me that my children were prevented from coming here,” said Lir, “but by the sorceries of your own Foster-child.”
“But what can you mean,” said the king.
“Eva has transformed my children into four white swans.”
Red-Bove knew from Eva’s countenance that what Lir had told him was true.
“The wicked deed you have committed shall be the worse for you,” said the king, and so saying he struck Eva with his own fae-switch and turned her into a Raven.
“This form shall be on you till the end of your days,” said Red-Bove.
Eva opened her wings and flew, with a scream, up and away, into the sky.
Then went Red-Bove and his Crafty-Folk and they camped on the margins of Lake Devra to converse with the children of Lir who were now swans, and to listen to the fairy music of their song.
For three hundred years they dwelled there until one night Finnola told them that on the morrow she and her brothers had to depart for the Sea of Moyle.
A great sorrow then on the Crafty-Ones and the next morning when the four swans spread their white wings and rose from the surface of the water infront of all their friends.
Upon reaching a vast height in the air they flew straight to the north and when they spied the Sea of Moyle churning below them, they descended to alight on its swelling surface.
The Crafty-Folk grieved their departure and that day made a law that no one in Erin should kill a swan from that time on…
to be continued…