The Dog and the Prince
Once upon a time, in a very small village of Wales in the Middle Ages, lived a prince, his son and a dog in a picturesque castle. The prince was known as Llewellyn the hasty. He was a slim man in his thirties. He had curly dark hair, sparkly grey eyes, massive brown beard, an extremely pale skin and a prominent nose. The prince was a widower, so he was responsible for the care of his little two-year-old son. The baby was known as Baby-Bu because “bu” was the only word that the baby repeated. Baby-Bu had a very good friend called Gelert. Gelert was a big black and brown Alsatian who always was next to Baby-Bu to protect him when he got into trouble.
One sunny day at midday, the prince, who was an expert hunter, went to the wood to try to find the little deer that he had seen that morning from the balcony of his bedroom. Before leaving the castle, as he usually did, the prince called the dog and while he was stroking the dog’s head, he said: “Loyal and brave Gelert, take care of my little boy as only you know how to do it. I’ll come back at the evening”. The prince raised Baby-Bu from his cot, kissed him and left him inside it again. The reliable Alsatian sat next to the cot and saw how the prince disappeared between the oaks and pines of the wood.
Shortly afterwards, a strange noise started to be heard. It came from the wood. Baby-Bu thought innocently that it was his dad coming and started to babble with delight. But Gelert knew that smell perfectly well. That strange noise and also well known smell came from a pack of wolves that lived near the castle and always were round in search of preys. The leader of the wolves had seen Baby-Bu and wanted to catch it. In a rush, the dog took Baby-Bu from his cot, hid it behind a bush and prepared himself for the difficult challenge. Gelert started fighting with the leader of the wolves and defeated it easily. Immediately after, two other wolves emerged from the wood and attacked the dog. The Alsatian fought with all his strength for two long hours, until he could kill the wolves. Once he realized that the situation was under control, the tired dog lay down to sleep. Although he was wounded and sore for the fighting, the courageous dog was proud of being the one who had protected Baby-Bu.
In the evening, the prince returned from his hunting and quickly noticed a strange smell in the air. While he was walking, he was examining the place closely, suddenly, he discovered spots of blood on the ground. The prince was confused and scared. What had happened? Where was his reliable dog? It was his son ok? Llewellyn ran as fast as he could where his son’s cot was, but to the prince’s amazement it was empty. Desperate, the prince looked for his dog in order to get an answer, but when he saw the animal, he turned pale. The Alsatian was covered in blood and it was peacefully sleeping in front of a bush. Astonished to see that, Llewellyn took his sword and killed the dog while it slept. Seconds afterward, the prince heard a noise from behind the bush. When he went round it, he found Baby-Bu playing with some leaves safe and sound. Further away from where his son was, the hasty prince saw the two dead wolves. Then, he understood.
At twilight, the prince carried the dog to the top of the highest green hill at the back of the castle and buried it. Then, he collected a pile of green and grey stones and marked the grave. That night, the moon and the stars shined as they had never done.
It was said that the prince Llewellyn the hasty did not have another dog again in his life, and that once a month, people could see him sat by the fire on the top of the highest hill at the back of his castle, remembering his trusting and brave dog Gelert.
You can still see the pile of stone on the top of the hill today.