It had been a long, long drive, but finally we’d reached our cottage in the depths of Pembrokeshire. The large log fire and wooden floors gave it a bohemian feel, while the Celtic art and ornaments everywhere left us in no doubt we were in the heart of Wales. This rural retreat would be our home for the holidays, and how we needed it – the divorce had taken its toll on both Alby, my ten year old son, and me. With work and school now finished for the summer, we were both definitely ready for a break.
After a light supper together, sat across the big, old wooden farmhouse kitchen table, we’d each enjoyed some personal time – Alby exploring the long back garden, while I opted for my novel, a fireside armchair, and a glass of warming Merlot. Soon it was time for Alby to turn in.
“Dad,” he said, as I prepared to turn out the bedside lamp, “who is Sinite?”
“I don’t know. Why?”
“The boy was looking for him.”
“The boy outside, in the field. The flash light boy.”
“Alby, you’ve had a long day. Time for sleep now.” I kissed his forehead and turned out the light. He turned over on his side. Checking back five minutes later, he was indeed fast asleep.
Pouring myself another glass of red, I walked out the kitchen door and down the long back garden. Stopping by the fence, I studied the mysterious shape of the feature that lay beyond – a megalithic burial chamber silhouetted against the setting sun. Sipping from my glass, I became aware of something at the far extreme of my peripheral vision. I turned my head to see a young boy. His gaunt appearance and deep shadowed eyes suggested he had seen more than enough suffering in his short life. He was wearing a grubby t-shirt with what looked like a Celtic symbol across the chest.
His lips moved and, amidst the whisper of the wind, I heard him say something indistinct.
“What’s that? I didn’t hear you.” Moving closer, I saw that it wasn’t a t-shirt. His grainy skin looked like it was made from wood, into which the Celtic symbol had been carved. Beneath this, I could see his lungs fill, breathing in the air to speak again with raised voice.
“Have you seen Sinite?” he called. As he spoke these words, his little eyes rolled up within their dark sockets, and a flash of light rippled across the Celtic symbol. It was as if a window in a building had suddenly opened, giving a dazzling reflection of the dying sun.
I studied him curiously, then answered, shaking my head.
“I don’t know who Sinite is.”
He took another deep breath. “Don’t worry,” he said quietly, his gaze trained back upon the burial chamber. “You will.”
My photo shows Pentre Ifan in Pembrokeshire which helped inspire this story.