Gae Bolg, Spear of Mortal Pain

Gae Bolg, Spear of Mortal Pain

When my Grandfather, Lugh, left the Emerald Isles for the Kingdom of the Winds, all he brought with him was an ornate, heavily magicked spear, known as the Gae Bolg. The Gae Bolg is a finely crafted spear, a great weapon for melee combat.

However, its true power awakens when it is thrown. When the Gae Bolg is thrown at an enemy thousands of barbs shoot out from it, causing it to stick. The only way to remove the Gae Bolg is to cut around the wound itself.

Lugh was given this spear by his master to commemorate the final day of his training. What his master did not know, is that the Gae Bolg also curses the wielder.

The curse? The wielder of the Gae Bolg will inevitably bring harm to the ones he loves. Lugh fell in love with a kind woman named Aoife that he met shortly after arriving in the Kingdom of the Winds, and they shared many days together.

Lugh continued on his journey, leaving Aoife behind, and breaking her heart. Months after his departure, Aoife’s belly began to swell. She gave birth to twin boys, My Father, Setanta, and Uncle, who died shortly after birth. My Grandmother became twisted by the rage that now filled her heart. As she raised my Father, she told him nothing of Lugh.

Years pass, and my Father grows. On his thirteenth birthday, Aoife hears news of Lugh’s whereabouts, and sends a courier with a letter, telling him of his son. After she sends the courier on his way, she tells Setanta that a man will be coming soon, a man she owes a considerable sum, and she is afraid he may harm her.

Setanta got very little sleep the following days, constantly on guard. When Lugh finally arrived on horseback, Setanta was high in a tree, his bow drawn.

As Lugh dismounted, Setanta struck him in the chest with three arrows. Setanta leaped from the tree, and ran up to the Lugh, who now lay upon the ground, the last of his life fading. Lugh looked up into Setanta’s eyes, the same color as his own, and was truly glad to see him.

“My son… I am glad I could see your face before my time came,” croaked Lugh. Lugh ceased moving, and his eyes unfocused. Setanta took the spear that was strapped to Lugh’s back, and walked towards his home.

“Mother… That man called me his son, is this true?” said Setanta, spear in hand. Aoife could have lied. She could have lied just as she had the entire time she raised Setanta. For some reason, knowing that her plan had worked, having had her son exact her revenge, she could not lie to her son any longer.

“Yes, my child, he is your father, but he left me! He left me and never came back!” cried Aoife, eyeing the spear in Setanta’s hands.

“So you had me kill him?!” cried Setanta, pointing the spear accusatorially at his Mother. “You had me kill my own Father?” Aoife opened her mouth to speak, but could not find the words. The Gae Bolg spoke to Setanta then.

“Kill her,” it said, “exact your vengeance for your slain father!” Setanta almost gave in to the powerful suggestions of the spear. He almost killed his own mother. His will was too strong for that, though, he shook his head violently and threw the spear into the wall, far from his Mother.

The Gae Bolg exploded into a thousand pieces, shards of pure light. The shards began to swirl around the room, a puff of smoke condensing in the center. The smoke stabilized into the form of a shade, a demon. It spoke to Setanta, tried it invade his mind, bend his will, and corrupt his heart.

The only response the demon received was a loud, guttural, “NO!” The sheer amount of force with which this word was shouted banished the demon from our world. The shards of light began to fly into the center of the room. Aoife and Setanta had to look away from the dazzling sight. The light began to fade, and when Setanta looked back, the Gae Bolg lay at his feet.

This is the spear I now carry; an heirloom of my family with a terrible past but a bright future. This is the story of the Gae Bolg, Spear of Mortal Pain.