• December Bride
  • Part Two



ye canna leave me home." Yet in spite of this decision -
perhaps because he felt that her mind had dwelt on the
unspoken request, perhaps because of the faint shade of
regret in her voice, Frank's heart leapt.

So, when they came out onto the road both turned away
from Ravara towards the townland of Banyil. Here and there
in the hedges could be seen the dim outlines of courting
couples, half-hidden in the lush grass. The murmurous sound
of their words and their stifled laughter came to Frank and
the girl as they walked along the dusky road. The dew felt
chill on the young man's face, white moths flitted silently
under the trees and against the silver-green light of the
sky, bats fled like polished stones, unce, as they approached,
a dark gateway, he touched her arm, but he felt it withdrawn
under his fingers, and they passed the place in silence.

At last, at the head of a loanen where several men
sat, she paused. A voice from the blackness of the hedge
bade her good-night. She answered, and then hastened her
steps and drew the young man further up the loanen. "Well,
good-night, now," she said.

"but wait, I dont know your name!" cried Frank, reach-
ing out to touch her.

She withdrew a little, "Molly McFirbis. That was my
father and my brothers wi' those men at the heado' the

"'Molly McFirbis'" he repeated. "And 1 didnt get my
reward for the scarf."

She said nothing.

"Molly," he asked, bending towards her, "will ye go
to husky Woods dance wi' me?" Again he felt the girl's
eyes trying to read his face in the dark, "i'll be going
anyway," she said at last.

"Aye, but will ye go wi' me? Molly, will ye go wi' me?"
She came close to him. "Yes. I’ll meet ye here at eight in
the evening."

Grass, Moths
Linen Hall Library, "Hanna184", Northern Ireland Literary Archive, accessed Wed, 01/19/2022 - 10:36, https://www.niliteraryarchive.com/content/hanna184?page=1