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Rated: 13+ · Short Story · Horror/Scary · #2315430
An alternative story of leprechauns.
Carrick Fergus

Carrick Fergus was born long ago in the days when leprechauns were as large as humans and had nothing but good relations with them. So long ago was this that Carrick’s Uncle, Old Tom O’Cobbley, held a contract for the supply of stone to Marlborough Masons Inc, the company that built Stonehenge.

The birth of young Carrick was a happy time in the Emerald Isle and his name, meaning strong rock, was an indication of the hopes placed in him by the Fergus family. It was a shame therefore, that, as the lad grew through the years of boyhood and youth, it became apparent that he wasn’t. Growing, that is. Time passed and Carrick’s name became a mockery of the shrunken little thing he had become.

Worse was that his heart, bitter at his lack of stature, became ever more evil as he searched for a way to repay the world for its amusement at the strange little creature that claimed to be a leprechaun. Driven by this desire for revenge, he studied the evil arts of black magic and sorcery.

His powers increased steadily while his heart grew ever blacker and he became a creature feared by humans and rejected by his fellow leprechauns. He set himself up in business and, by the use of his secret spells and incantations, he prospered so well that soon his was the greatest company in Ireland, even his uncle’s old firm having been taken over by a hostile bid from Carrick.

Time passed and Carrick Fergus became so rich that all Ireland, both humans and leprechauns, were impoverished and suffered. The sour little man squeezed them hard, now that he had power, and all felt his baleful presence. Many of the humans began to blame the leprechauns for their troubles - for was not this Carrick a leprechaun despite his miniscule size? And the leprechauns denied him and fought against those who saw them as the cause of their troubles.

There was war in the land and the Emerald Isle dissolved into a place of tiny principalities and chieftainships, all distrusting each other at every turn.

And still Carrick grew ever richer.

At last, it came about that Carrick possessed all the riches of the island and the inhabitants were left with nothing but what they could scrounge from those even poorer than themselves. In their desperation, the humans elected a high king who called all the various petty leaders together to speak with Carrick about his greed.

He came, confident that his dark powers could protect him from any attempt to imprison him and steal his money. The little being, bent and wizened now in his wickedness, waited while the king made his appeal. Then he stood before them all and asked this question:

“Where are my brothers and sisters, the leprechauns? How is it that the humans come seeking my favour but not so my own blood?”

The king was surprised at the question but answered truthfully. “We invited therm but they would not come. I know not why.”

Carrick’s face turned red with the rage stored up in his heart. “Then,” he pronounced, “they shall suffer the worst in their pride and obstinacy. Let them from this day forth have children who never grow beyond my height, and let them live in the shadows, afraid of the big people, hunted and laughed at as strangers in their own country.”

Then he turned and uttered the words of a curse that carried out his threat. So it has been for the leprechauns ever since.

And so Carrick turned to the king. “For the humans, because they have humbled themselves and asked me, I will make this promise. They may seek me with all their wiles and cunning and, if they catch me, I will take them to my treasure and share it with them in full. Do not think it will be easy, however.”

With that, he disappeared and people have sought him ever since. Without success.

Word count: 666
For Horror Writing Contest? No! Activity! March 2024
Prompt: An evil leprechaun.

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