Hugh and Hywel decided to walk off the pathway, past the hut and to the west. They had no idea where the hiding place of Timothy could be located, but Hywel began to wonder if the animals obeyed some sort of sorcerer. He suggested to Hugh that they would follow any animal which moved, such as the deer or the foxes. Sadly, for them, their entire conversation was overheard by the rabbits, which immediately ran and told Timothy that the animals were suspect. Timothy instructed the animals to play "hide and seek", running this way and that to confuse the two. And, so, for two or three hours, the deer went one east, the badgers west, the foxes obviously south and so on. After half the day had passed, Hugh refused to move another inch. "It is as it they were leading us astray on purpose." Hywel stopped walking. He sat down, exhausted. "Of course, why did I not think of that?" The two men were getting hungry and soon the smell of food wafted from the direction of the hut. "Do you think this sorcerer would poison us?"
Hywel answered, "The food we ate the first day did not hurt us." And, being a bit superstitious, he added, "And, remember, Ralph and Roger did not eat anything and they are dead and gone. Maybe the food protected us."
Hugh thought that was a silly idea but said nothing. The two men walked slowly back to the hut. Hywel began to wonder whether they would find the treasure. Hugh no longer cared. He was pining for the town pubs he left behind so many weeks ago.
The door of the hut remained wide open, as they had left it, as the sun began to set in the sky. The dusk came early at this time of year and Hugh lit a candle in the small room.
Hywel dished up more odd stew and vegetables and made places for two at the table. Soon, the two men were eating and forgetting the craziness of the day, until Hywel saw something which made him stop eating, his spoon in mid-air. Outside the window he was facing stood the most enormous bear he had ever seen.
Hywel had laid the gun on a rack on the wall and ran to get it. But, the bear vanished. This vision created real fear in his soul. For the first time, perhaps ever, Hywel thought of giving up a life of crime and greediness, but sadly, as his habits of mind were so strong, he decided to continue with the quest.
"Did you see anything outside, Hugh?" Hugh had been facing another direction, towards the door and had not seen the bear. When Hywel ran to get the gun, Hugh had hide underneath the table.
"No, I did not." But, Hugh was lying. He had seen the bear in a mirror on the wall, an ancient, bent mirror but clear enough to show the large, dark shape. Hugh was forming his own plan. Perhaps the bear would end up taking Hywel and Hugh would simply row to the closest shore and leave this haunted island behind.
The man of greed was also forming a plan. If he could get rid of Hugh, then, when he found the treasure, he would not have to share it. Both men remained silent in their evil plans.
Hywel did not know what to do about the bear, but just then, there was a knock at the door, which the men had shut and bolted. Hywel still had the gun in this hand. "Hugh, open it and I can shoot whatever is there."
"Bears do not knock on doors, Hywel", answered Hugh. He was afraid Hywel would shoot him. "You open the door." The knocking continued. Both men stared at each other. Then Hugh added, "We do not have to open the door." But, the knocking continued.
Hywel yelled, "I cannot take this anymore," and he turned around and opened the door. Of course, no one was there. A fox had taken a stick in its mouth and knocked on the door, running away into a hedge quickly when Hywel opened it.
The man, now so nervous he could not think properly, stepped outside on the same path where Roger had seen the bear. The door faced due west.and beyond the hedge, Hywel could see a faint light. Hugh stood behind him. "Fairy lights, and dangerous," he said in a heavy voice.
Hywel wanted to follow the light. His level of impatience at not finding the treasure grew hourly. He thought o the bear. So did Hugh. "But, if we are going to find anything, maybe we should follow the light."
So, both men agreed to go out into the dark with the gun and the lamp. They walked due west, towards the small light. It seemed about 400 feet away, but as they walked, it receded and they finally realized after twenty-minutes or so, that they were not any closer to the light.
Hugh was still planning to abdicated his role and play the betrayer, if he could find the sorcerer. Hywel was planning on sacrificing Hugh to the bear, in an effort to get rid of him. But, just as he thought this, Hywel fell into a trap-a simple animal trap, the oldest type in history, a hole in the ground which had been covered with reeds, moss and bracken. The trap was about twenty feet deep, a really deep hole, partially natural and partially dug out to be deeper. "Hugh, help me out of here." But, Hugh yelled back, "Throw me the gun first, as I am afraid the bear will return while I am helping you."
"No, I am keeping the gun," replied Hywel. Hugh backed away quietly and ran towards the light so far away. He was convinced the light could lead him to the sorcerer. And, he would leave Hywel to the bear. After all, Hywel had the gun.
"Hugh, Hugh, where are you? Get me out of here, now, you idiot." But, all Hywel heard was the low growl of a large bear. "I shall have to try and kill this bear with one shot, which is all I have left. And, I cannot see in the dark." He tried to remain calm, but the growling continued. "Maybe it got Hugh."
Then, all was silent. Hywel felt so tired, he could hardly stand up. The ferns and bracken at the bottom of the bottom of the hole looked like a soft bed. He wondered it he could just lay down until morning. He was too short to jump out of the hole and it the bear was up on the surface, Hywel felt it would not come into the hole. How would the bear get out?
In the meantime, Hugh ran into the small forest and kept running to the light. He yelled, "Sorcerer, I want to talk with you. Magician, hear me. I give up. I want to go home."
Timothy heard his voice from his small cave. He said to Belsay, "Go out and meet the man and pretend you are a sorceress. Ask him what he wants. Be careful. But, he seems to be a coward and cowards do not attack Arctic wolves."
Belsay bowed her head, "Yes, Master and this will be fun." She ran towards the clearing where Hugh now stood and halted in front of him. Hugh was terrified. "I, I , I want to leave in the boat. I shall never come back. I no longer want any treasure. Please let me go. You have the other man in the hole."
"So, Evil Man, you would sacrifice your comrade and leave him here to danger, while you left freely? Men are cowards. No animal on this island would do such a thing, and why should we let you go, to do evil deeds on the mainland?"
Hugh could not believe a sorcereess, as Belsay's voice was that of a female, could talk to him in this accursed place, as he saw it.
"What choice do I have? Do I have a choice?" Hugh felt sorry for himself, as he usually did in these situations.
"You always have a choice to choose good, Evil Man. Choose one now. Go back and help the other man out of the pit and we shall let both of you go in the boat, but only if you promise never to speak of this
place and to repent of your evil, doing good for the rest of your short days."
Hugh shook, "Yes, yes, I shall go back and agree to your terms. Do you promise to help us leave? But, what if the other man will not leave?
Belsay continued, "If the other Evil Man does not want to leave, we shall still let you go, if you try to help him."
Hugh agreed. Belsay said, "I myself will lead you back to the pit. The bear will not harm you if I am with you."
Hugh followed the wolf back to the pit, but the wolf disappeared back into the forest as soon as he knelt at the edge of the hole. "Hywel, I met a sorceress. She looks like a wolf and she told me that she would help us get off this horrible island if I helped you out of the hole. She protected me from the bear. Now, I shall get a heavy branch and pull you out."
Hywel yelled back, "Alright, get me out of here, now." He did not believe Hugh, but Hugh was helping him out of the pit.
As Hugh pulled Hywel out of the hole, the greedy man said to him, "I suppose I have to thank you, but I do not believe your story. And, why should I leave without the treasure? You give up to easily. I never wanted you with us and now I am getting rid of you. Hywel pointed the gun at Hugh, but just as he pulled the trigger, the bear lunged at him from the side and pushed him back into the hole. The gun blew up and Hywel fell breaking his neck.
Hugh looked at the bear, and the bear looked at Hugh. "I am sorry. I did not want Hywel to die. I am so tired of games and treasure hunting. I just want to go home."
Belsay came up to the side of the pit. Hywel lay dead at the bottom. "We need to discuss what to do with you. Go back to the hut, sleep and in the morning, you will see more magic."
Hugh practically ran back to the hut, slammed the door and bolted it. He threw himself in the bed, but before he did, he did something he had not done since he was a child. He prayed.
In the morning, Hugh was awakened by a large bird, a raven, pecking at north window. He rose and opened the window. The raven spoke to him. "Follow me to the beach and you will be told by another how you are to leave. You may take five jewels with you for your travels, but you are never to speak of this time again."
Hugh rushed out and followed the raven, which handed him a sack of the five jewels found by Hywel . Hugh, at first, did not want to take the jewels, but he was in an obedient mood and followed the raven to the beach.
There, at the edge, was the largest turtle he had ever seen. In its face, it resembled an old, wise man. The turtle spoke. "If you are willing to repent and abide by the directions you were given last night, I shall take you to the shore, but you will have to ride on my back. Are you willing? You must trust me."
Now Hugh had never trusted any man in his life, much less a turtle. "Why cannot I have the boat," he asked. "Is this a trial?"
If turtles could smile, Ringsend would have smiled. "Yes, it is a test. You have been given one more test to see if you are worthy to return to men and live a good life."
Hugh felt that his self-centeredness was melting away. He began to cry, even though he was a grown man.
"I actually feel something new. I feel gratitude. Yes, I shall go with you."
Hugh put the satchel of jewels around his neck. He climbed on the back of the great turtle and the animal slide into the waves of the sea.
"Hang on to my shell. The trip is only two hours". Hugh did as he was told. The turtle swam around the eastern shore of the island and into the strait between the island and the mainland. Hugh, in his old habits, began to complain. "It is too hard to hang on to you. This is harder than I thought. How long will this take?"
The turtle answered, "You must not complain. You should stay in that grateful grace you were given on the island. This will be only two hours of your entire life."
Hugh;s hands hurt. He never let himself endure pain before this. He always found a way out of painful situations and always sought the easiest way out. Now, he was slipping back into his old thoughts of self-pity and weakness. His narcissism was not strong enough to demand success, only comfort.
Hugh said, "I cannot do this," and he let go and sank into the sea.
The turtle turned around. He could not see the man sinking farther and farther into the depths. Ringsend swam back to the island, around to the south side, where Belsay and Timothy waited for him. Sadness circled the wise eyes of the old turtle.
"You see, Timothy, old habits of evil make men weak of will. You have been spared to do good and remember these lessons. I shall never see you again as I am going to the warm seas and there I shall die. May our Creator be with you."
Timothy knelt down and kissed the head of the turtle. "Goodbye, Grandfather Ringsend, I shall never forget you."
The turtle answered, "One more thing. You have never looked at the treasure as your heart is pure, Now, take it back to your hut, and look at it, but first bury the man in the pit on the mainland, as no one is buried in Eden."
The turtle slipped back into the sea and was gone. Timothy stood there for awhile, and then went to the pit. The bear had somehow carried the body out of the hole and Timothy wrapped Hywel's body up in a blanket. He took it to the boat and within six hours, with the badgers, had returned to the island. That night, Timothy took the chest of Alba into his hut and opened it up. The first layer of jewels seemed usually brilliant-emeralds, rubies, diamonds lay on top of another box. Timothy reach into the lower part of the chest and pulled out the box. It was black leather and was closed with a latch. Timothy unlatched the box and in it were several things he did not recognize. But an old letter written in the same language of long ago, Latin, lay on top of these golden things. Timothy had learned Latin from his Bible, as he had two Bibles, one in Latin and one in an old English tongue he had deciphered. He could always read and never knew a time when he could not.
The letter was from Alba, as her large signature gracefully ended the paragraphs. The letter read, "Dear one of my descendants. I, Alba, bequeath to you the Mass vessels used at the last Mass attended by the great King and Saint, Edmund, dear martyr of our people. These vessels, sacred and revered, came from Rome hundreds of years ago brought by the first Christians to East Anglia. Some say this cup was that of Christ Himself, used at the Last Supper. Dear Descendant, for my sake, take these back to our country, if it is at peace and give them back to the altar of God. These are my jewels. Alba."
Timothy wept. These things were mysteries to him but he knew what he had to do. Ever since he was a very young child, left on this magical island by his parents, he felt that he had belonged to God Himself. When he read the words of the Last Supper, his heart had burned with a great desire to serve God. When he read the words of Paul on the priesthood in the Letter to the Hebrews, his heart swelled with love.
Now, he knew what he must do. And, so did his creatures. All the animals came out of their hiding places and bowed to the Master. Timothy instinctively did something he would do hundreds of times in the future. He blessed them.
Then, taking the jewels of Alba, Timothy rowed away in the boat to the mainland. Years later, many years later, stories of a holy priest in a hermitage near old Beodericsworth, a holy hermit who said Mass with the oldest chalice the locals had ever seen. Some said it was from the treasures of the old Villa Faustina, where the Christian Romans had built a small chapel. Some said the hermit looked like the old families of East Anglia, which once was honored by the beautiful Alba, whose jewels had disappeared centuries ago, after the death of the saintly king.
Timothy lived to be very old and another legend grew up around him. People claimed that at night, a she-wolf would come and visit him, speaking with him in an old language of the East Angles. Such was Belsay, who had vowed to guard her master until his death.