Wodek, the grand white wizard
Oswald, a white wizard
Slogg, the Magwort servant
Marog, raven of memory
Hurog, raven of knowledge
The Forest Elves of Alfheim:
The Harmgots (Dark Elves of Dunkelheim):
The Borger-Elfir (Mountain-Elves of Mimir):
Bjorn and Ulrika: two human slaves of the Harmgots
The Old Library
The scene opens on the children searching for the book of myths in the library. Kirrig has her ears covered with a large woolly hat. They are making rather a lot of noise.
MELISSA: Jack, do be quiet! You’ll get us thrown out of here. And do stop kicking that ball of paper around. Why do you have to kick things all the time?
ALEX: Because he’s a boy – that’s why. That’s what boys do. They’re so boring!
TOM: Why don’t you come and help us find the big book of myths, Jack? The sooner we find it, the sooner we’ll get back to Middlegarth again.
LIBRARIAN: (Off-stage) Silence! Silence must be observed in the library!
MELISSA: (In a whisper) I told you to be quiet, didn’t I? You’ll get us thrown out.
(Tom continues the search for the book. Amy snatches the hat from Kirrig’s head and Kirrig squeals with delight as she chases Amy around the room dodging in and out of the other children. Jack continues to kick the paper ball around.)
MELISSA: Aha! Here’s the book, Tom, but where do I find the chant?
TOM: It should be on a loose piece of paper. Do you remember, last time we searched for it it had been torn out by Alex to prevent us following her back to Middlegarth?
ALEX: I put it back in the book afterwards though, Tom. Honest, I did.
JACK: (Pausing his game momentarily) Oh that’s great! It’s probably lost for good then.
ALEX: It’s not my fault is it? I tucked it in the back of the book.
MELISSA: Well it’s not here now. (Speaking animatedly now.)
JACK: You stupid girl! This is all your fault.
(Enter the librarian. Amy quickly runs in front of Kirrig to hide her elfish ears. The librarian has already noticed them and tries to peer round behind Amy as she speaks.)
LIBRARIAN: Now, children, this is your last warning. I must remind you that libraries are quiet places. People come here to read and study, and they do not wish to be disturbed by your shrill voices and boisterous games. If you wish to play games, go to the playground. Now – have I made myself clear?
CHILDREN: Yes, Miss!
LIBRARIAN: Now, you may stay if you intend to read quietly.
AMY: Thank you, Miss.
(The librarian peers at Kirrig over her spectacles as she exits.)
MELISS:A Phew, that was close. Kirrig, put your hat back on at once! I’m sure she noticed your ears.
TOM: Jack, pick up that paper ball. That’s enough football. You’ll get us chucked out if you’re not careful. (Jack picks up the paper and begins to unravel it.)
JACK: Hey, do look at this everyone. Do you recognise the print?
ALEX: It’s the missing page with the chant.
AMY: Hooray! Kirrig will be able to go home now. I will miss her though.
MELISSA: We all will, Amy.
KIRRIG: Kirrig not wish to go home. She want to stay here with Amy. This Kirrig’s home now.
TOM: We know you want to stay here, Kirrig, but we really must return you to your own folk in the forest.
KIRRIG: Kirrig frightened to go back. Too many wicked creatures in Middlegarth. None here in your world – except big dogs that bark. They frighten Kirrig.
MELISSA: Don’t be anxious, Kirrig. We’ll go with you to see you safely home. We’ll see that you don’t come to any harm.
KIRRIG: What about wicked Magworts? They steal Kirrig and make her slave.
JACK: The Magworts are all dead, Kirrig. Don’t you remember? We tricked them and turned them all to stone. That was incredible! I’d like to do it again.
TOM: Oh do be quiet, Jack. You’ll make her even more frightened.
ALEX: Let’s get on with it! I’m getting bored.
MELISSA: Alright everybody, form a circle and hold hands.
JACK: Not this again – holding hands with girls – Yuk!
ALEX: Don’t be silly, Jack, or I’ll slap your face! (Jack pouts.)
AMY: Tom, I’m frightened. It seems as though every time we go to Middlegarth we encounter a greater evil. First, the Magworts, then the Glumworts and … what next?
TOM: Be brave, Amy. We must do this for the sake of our friend, Kirrig. We cannot leave her in our world for ever. She does not belong here any more than we do in her world.
AMY: I suppose you’re right, Tom, but I’m still frightened all the same.
TOM: Hold hands, everyone and be ready for the chant. Let’s practise it now:
(Reading from the piece of paper) þurh blâst ond regn…
ALL; þurh blâst ond regn…
TOM; iç ġefare in drÿliçan eorǷriçe.
ALL: iç ġefare in drÿliçan eorǷriçe.
[Through wind and rain into the magical earthly kingdom I go. Old English pronounciation guide: Thurch blast and rayn itch yefaruh in drewleechun airthreacher.]
KIRRIG: (Slipping out of the ring) No, no! Kirrig not want to go. Kirrig stay here.
MELISSA: (In a kindly voice) Kirrig, be brave, we must go now. Now come back into the ring, here, between Tom and me.
(Kirrig obeys her and Melissa and Tom hold Kirrig firmly by the wrists. As they chant she tries to slip away again but she is held too tightly to break free.)
TOM; Together everyone – the chant, just as we practised it.
ALL; þurh blâst ond regn iç ġefare in drÿliçan eorǷriçe. (Three times)
On the second time the stage goes dim and we hear Kirrig and Amy screaming. In this distance the sound of the librarian’s voice calling for silence can be heard. On the third time there is a loud sound effect of thunder and a huge flash of light. The stage blacks out and the children disappear.
The Forest of Alfheim
It is twilight in the forest and all is eerily still. The sound of birds flying off to roost can be heard in the distance and the hoot of an early owl. Enter the children. Amy appears frightened and Kirrig is sulking.
JACK: (In a hushed voice, as if trying not to wake a sleeping child) Where is everyone then? I’ve never seen the forest so quiet and still. It’s uncanny.
ALEX: Perhaps they are all asleep.
MELISSA: That’s not very likely, Alex. The elves are always on their guard.
TOM: Why don’t you ask Kirrig to call them?
ALEX: That’s no good – she’s sulking. Girls are so boring when they sulk.
JACK: Hear, hear!
AMY: Kirrig, please don’t be in a mood with us. We had to bring you home, you know that.
KIRRIG: Kirrig lives with you now – not here in forest.
JACK: Yoohoo! Elves, where are you? It’s me, Jack, and the others.
MELISSA; Jack, do be quiet! You’ll wake the whole forest!
AMY; I know – the handsigns. We can call the elves silently with the handsigns. Now, let me see! If I do ebwar and asur they will know that we are calling them and that it is safe to come out. (She makes the ebwar and asur signs and the others copy them, except Kirrig, who is still sulking. Harkrugg slips out from behind a tree.)
HARKRUGG: Kirrig! Little elf Kirrig. Where on earth have you been all these years? We thought you had been stolen from us again.
(Other elves appear silently from various hiding places)
MOONDAG: Kirrig, you’ve come home at last – and Tom, Melissa, Alex, Amy and Jack. How good to see you again. (One by one the elves hug Kirrig)
TOM: Hello, Moondag! I’m afraid it’s our fault you’ve been missing Kirrig. She got caught up in our transportation spell but we returned with her as soon as we were able.
MELISSA: You see, she stepped into the ring when we chanted the spell to return home and she was transported with us.
TRIGG: We searched the whole forest. We knew you were sad because your friends went away, Kirrig. But we could not find you anywhere.
KIRRIG: Kirrig not want to come back. Kirrig happy at home with children! But Kirrig missed elfir friends and glad to see you again.
TOSTIG: These are not happy times in Alfheim, Kirrig. Elves live in fear.
JACK: But how can this be? The Magworts and the sorcerer Lokki threatened you – and we helped destroy them.
ALEX: Yes, and then it was the Glumworts. We sorted them out good and proper.
JACK: Yeah! AMY What further bad luck could possibly befall you?
WENZEL: The elves have a saying that bad things happen in threes.
MOONDAG: And that the third thing is always the worst of all.
TOSTIG: This is certainly true for us. Our forest and our lives are threatened greatly by the most evil danger of all.
TRIGG: The Dark Elves of Dunkelheim.
HARKRUGG: The fallen elves – the lowest form of life in this world.
KIRRIG: Kirrig knows the legend of the Dark Elves – but surely it is legend only?
WENZEL: Not so, little Kirrig. These elves are real and are descendants of a band of Borger Elfir or Mountain Elves. That most evil sorcerer, Lord Lokki, bewitched them for a punishment when they would not obey him.
TRIGG: His magic drew all the good out of them and replaced it with pure evil.
The Nethersole School, Polesworth, Staffordshire, England
Act One Beginners, Portsmouth, Hampshire, England
Farlingaye High School, Woodbridge, Suffolk, England
East Moonta, Australia