Binding Oaths

Book 12 in the Wyrdwolf series

Book 12 in the Wyrdwolf series
When Izzy begins to suspect her son's dog is an intruder, she has no idea of the horrors this will reveal. With Michael seriously ill and Morgan in trouble at school, the last thing she needs is to uncover an ages-old plot that has robbed Merlin's heirs of their memories. Then Izzy finds out she has lost something she would kill to regain.

If only she could remember what it is.

Bound by the Seelie Court, Declan can't tell her what he knows. Except that the only way they can recover what they've lost is for Michael to kill an elf. With her mates ill or threatened, Izzy begins to think they have no hope.

Help comes from two witches who are forced to face their own past when they agree to a request from Declan. By the time they realise how deeply they are involved, they and those they love are already at risk.

Unable to rely on anything she thinks she remembers, Izzy must make a nightmare journey to ancient lands in a last-ditch attempt to save her mates, her cubs and herself against overwhelming odds. This time they are fighting elves – and their only chance is to reach the witches first.

The twelth book in the Wyrdwolf series draws on Welsh mythology, Cornish folklore, traditional witchcraft and Christian folklore. Set in the borderlands of England and South Wales.

  • series number: Book #12
  • Where to buy: Amazon US
  • Where to buy: Amazon UK
  •    For other countries, click on the UK link and substitute your country's domain for the in the url
  • True BitsIf you want to know which of the folklore and history in the books is true

True Bits in the book

Chapter 2
The symbology of the rose exists.

Chapter 3
Islamic hadith record that Jinn favour the appearance of a black dog. See Sahih Ibn Hibban (6156).

Red ears as the mark of a fay animal comes from Irish and Welsh mythology.

The Nanteos Cup exists and is claimed to be the Holy Grail.

In British folklore, the Thirteen Treasures of Britain is buried with Merlin on Bardsey Island. Merlin’s Oak in Carmarthen existed between the 17th and 19th centuries.

St Beuno’s Cup is based on the Trawsfynydd Tankard.

Vortigern is mentioned in the Historia Brittonum attributed to Nennius, a 9th-century Christian monk from Gwynedd, Wales.

Y Draig Coch (Welsh) = the red dragon. This is the name of the Welsh flag.

n’est-ce pas, ma cherie (French) = won’t we, my love?

Chapter 4
Parfait (French) = perfect.

Chapter 8
The dating of domestic electricity in the UK is true.

Chapter 9
Fornyrðislag (old story metre) is an Old Norse poetic metre with alliteration but without internal rhyme. Iambic pentameter is an English verse form.

Chapter 10
Ah, bon (French) = Oh, really? (sarcastic)

Pépé (French) = grandfather (informal).

Chapter 11
The Addams Family was a 1960s TV series based on the work of Charles Addams.

Chapter 12
The name Enid may come from Middle Welsh eneit = spirit, life.

Chapter 13
Geoffrey Chaucer is a major English poet of the Middle Ages.

Orpheus (Ancient Greece) and Väinämöinen (Finnish, Kalevala) are famous for charming animals through playing on their harps.

The British Security Industry Association exists.

The museum exhibits are real examples of widespread apotropaic magic used in the UK since medieval times. The Latin title of the Virgin Mary is Regina Caeli.  I made up the bit about diamonds being used for the Vanir (a clan of Heathen gods).

Staining runes after carving is referred to in the Poetic Edda, Havamal 141-144. Academics argue about the colour and whether blood or paint was used.

Chapter 15
The Dunning–Kruger effect exists. The lemon juice example happened.

There is a Welsh Christian saint called Melangell. She was said to be the daughter of an Irish king and is associated with hares. I changed her story.

The Tylwyth Teg are Welsh elves.

In English folklore, hares are associated with witches.

Chapter 16
The tale of Math fab Mathonwy, Gwydion and Blodeuwedd is in the Fourth Branch of the Mabinogi. Math and Gwydion made Blodeuwedd out of oak, broom and meadowsweet. The information about aspirin is true.

I invented the connection between Lleu’s oak tree and Blodeuwedd’s.

Comprends-tu? (French) = do you understand? (familiar form)

Désolé, cherie. La petite mort, n’est-ce pas (French) = Sorry, darling. [It’s] the Little Death, isn’t it? La Petit Mort is a concept referring to a weakening or loss of consciousness, specifically in sleep or during an orgasm.

Chapter 18
The Kipling quote is real, as is the Cornish story about the spriggan. Tolkien’s song is in The Hobbit. The grim ballad is Child #67.

Thomas of Erceldoune is a figure in Scottish Borders folklore.

Chapter 19
Verglas is a thin coating of ice or frozen rain on an exposed surface.

Chapter 20
The information about Trellech is real, including the well.

Declan’s information about roses and Harpocrates is true. A Grand Tour was the 18th century custom of a trip around Europe undertaken by young upper-class men.

In vino veritas (Latin) = in wine lies the truth. That is, a person under the influence of alcohol is more likely to speak their hidden thoughts and desires.

The folklore of trees in this book (ash, oak, rowan, hawthorn, yew etc.) is European.

Chapter 21
The Arthurian folklore from Tintagel is real, as is the probable history of Arthur’s Castle.

Grockles (Cornish dialect) = tourists.

Lammas (from Anglo Saxon Loafmas) is an Anglo Saxon harvest festival still celebrated by many modern pagans on 1st August.

Chapter 22
The folklore about white hares is true.

Chapter 23
Kerdhin (Cornish) = rowan.

The Dagda is a god from Irish mythology.

The Hurlers and the Pipers exist.

 Mên Scryfa (Cornish) = ‘stone with writing’ is a standing stone in North Cornwall. Local folklore has an army buried under it.

St Michael’s Mount is a small island off the coast of Cornwall. Its Cornish name is Karrek Loos yn Koos (= grey rock in the wood). There was a priory there in medieval times. It was never named Myghal’s Mount.

The tale of the enchanter lord of Pengersick is from Cornish folklore. It includes an Eastern wife, a mysterious stranger and the fire.

Avalon = Isle of Apples. Arthur was taken there after the Battle of Camlann.

Isis had to make a new penis for Osiris for him to father Horus (Heru).

The information about Cadoc, King Donyarth and the history of the title of Earl of Cornwall is true.

Chapter 24
The Gokstad ship was rescued from a Viking era burial mound in Scandinavia and is now in Oslo.

Skiðblaðnir (=assembled from thin pieces of wood) could be folded up and always had a fair wind. Loki obtained it for Freyr. See the Prose Edda Skaldskaparmal 35.

The word hysteria comes from the Greek word for uterus. The ancient Greeks believed that the uterus moved around a woman's body to cause disease.

Chapter 25
The director Ridley Scott did not make a version of Lord of the Rings.

The names of the magical schools and colleges are drawn from Welsh mythology. Math fab Mathonwy was King of Gwynedd in North Wales. His story is the Fourth Branch of the Mabinogi.

Pwyll = Pwyll Pen Annwn is the hero of the First Branch of the Mabinogi and King of Dyfed in south-west Wales.

Gwydion = Gwydion fab Dôn is a magician, hero and trickster. He appears most prominently in the Fourth Branch of the Mabinogi.

Myrddin (Welsh) = Merlin.

Chapter 26
Pucas are a part of Brythonic (Welsh, Cornish etc) folklore.

In European folklore, hares were thought to change sex annually.

Chaucer mentions a harpist named Glascurion or Glasgerion in House of Fame. The tale of love and revenge is Child Ballard #67. Fictitious bards such as Iolo Morganwg’s Geraint and Kirion the Sallow are based on him.

Yggdrasil is the world tree in Heathen mythology. It’s identified as an ash in the Poetic Edda Voluspa 19. The Glastonbury thorn exists.

Chapter 27
Tapping the bone exists. So do the other forms of divination mentioned.

In UK folklore, witches were thought to be able to change into hares.

Rain uses the Anglo Saxon names for the runes. The meanings of the names are true as is what Rain says about the rune sets. The tree folklore is real.

The attributes of the wood of oak, ash and thorn are true.

Chapter 28
the family jewels (British slang) = male genitals.

Many of the ingredients in the potion are used in relevant herbal remedies. Some are dangerous.

Mên-an-Tol (Cornish) = stone-the-hole. It comprises three upright granite stones. The central one is round with a hole in the middle. ‘Crick’ alludes to its alleged healing ability.

Cornwall has been a world source of tin since ancient times.

Hag stones are stones with a naturally occurring hole through them. In Britain, they have many names.

It’s illegal to spread knotweed in the UK.

A nemeton was a sacred space of ancient Celtic religion.

In Cornish folklore, a spriggan is malicious fay who looks like an old man.

The all-female Takarazuka Revue is a popular Japanese drama school.

Chapter 29
Early miscarriages in humans and dogs reabsorb the zygote(s) rather than aborting them.

Chapter 30
The Puritan Commonwealth reigned the UK from 1649 to 1660. The reign of Charles II is commonly known as the Restoration (of the monarchy).

Chapter 31
In his The Battle for Gaul, Julius Caesar records that druid training took twenty years.

Queen Elizabeth II was crowned 2 June 1953.

Chapter 32
Groundhog Day is a 1993 American fantasy comedy film.

The names given to adder stones are true as is the folklore about them.

Chapter 33
The knight moves in an ‘L’ shape that enables it to jump over other pieces.

A rook is one of the most powerful pieces. Each player begins a game with two.

Chapter 34
Croque Madame is a cooked ham and cheese sandwich topped with a fried egg. It’s a universal French snack.

Chapter 35
The Arthurian legends began with Gildas, Nennius and Geoffrey of Monmouth’s Historia Regum Britanniae.

Breton, Cornish and Welsh are all Brythonic languages. Brittany was settled by Cornish and Welsh emigrants.

The Bodmin Manumissions is an excellent source for medieval Cornish names.

John Militon was a real person who owned Pengersick castle in the 16th century. His son Job was briefly Governor of St Michael’s Mount.

Chapter 36
The Old North (Yr Hen Ogledd in Welsh) existed. It stretched roughly from the existing M62 motorway to the Antonine Wall in Scotland and included the ancient Welsh kingdom of Gwynedd.

The Ring of Luned is one of the mythical Thirteen Treasures of Britain. The folklore relating to it is real.

Chapter 37
Nia (Welsh) = bright.

Aval (Cornish/Breton) = apple.

Lesser or Little Britain are names given to Brittany.

Chapter 38
Guardians of the Galaxy is a 2014 American superhero film.

Chapter 41
The Trawsfynydd Tankard is in the National Museum of Wales in Cardiff and is as described in the book.

St Beuno exists as a Christian saint. He may have been two different people due to the timelines. Edward’s potted history of him is true.

Chapter 42
Broceliande is part of the myths about Merlin. On the map, it’s the Forêt de Paimpont in Brittany. Emrys is one of Merlin’s names in Welsh folklore.

Tegen (Cornish) = jewel

Milpreve (Cornish) = adder stone.

O Rose thou art sick is from the poem The Sick Rose by William Blake.

Chapter 43
Gorsedd (Welsh) = throne. In modern Wales, Cornwall and Brittany it is a community or meeting of modern-day bards.  

Anglesey was the last stand of the druids according to the Roman sources.

The yew is associated with life and resurrection due to its longevity and ability to regenerate when apparently dead.

Chapter 46
Apotropaic marks dating back to the early 17th century were commonly carved into entrances such as doors, windows and chimneys. They were often scorched.  

Chapter 48
Awen is a Welsh, Cornish and Breton word for inspiration. It’s a central concept of modern pagan Druidry.

Chapter 51
Bien (French) = good.

Chapter 52
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (sudden cardiac arrest) is the commonest cause of sudden death in healthy young people.

Wistman’s Wood is an outstanding example of English native upland oak woodland and a Site of Special Scientific Interest.

Chapter 53
Glasgerion was said to be the son of the king of Powys, which is where St Beuno came from.

In Heathen mythology, Loki had his mouth sewn shut for trickery. See the Prose Edda Skaldskaparmal 35.

Chapter 57
AWOL (acronym) = absent without leave

Izzy’s route to Wales exists.

WAG (acronym) = wives and girlfriends (usually of celebrities).

Chapter 58
In Heathen Mythology, Ginnungagap is the primordial void.

The approved method of driving on ice is real.

Chapter 59
According to British folklore, the fay dislike cold iron.

Canines can smell the chemical reaction of silver tarnishing.

Chapter 61
Castell Bryn Gwyn exists.

The Hitchcock thriller is The Birds, based on a story by Daphne Du Maurier.

Chapter 63
The Seelie Court takes place in the area occupied by the Bryn Gwyn stone circle, close to Castell Bryn Gwyn. Only two stones remain of an original eight (not nine).

Chapter 70
Joan-the-Wad is part of Cornish folklore.

Many of the ancient tin mines are in the same area as Mên Scryfa.

Chapter 73
The Clearwell Caves exist.

Chapter 74
Hogwarts is a school of magic in the Harry Potter books, written by J K Rowling.

The White Nights festival in St Petersburg exists. It takes place between May and July.