Act of Mercy: A Celtic Mystery

Act of Mercy: A Celtic Mystery

Peter Tremayne

Language: English

Pages: 288

ISBN: 0312268645

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

In the late autumn of 666 A.D., Fidelma of Cashel - an advocate of the Brehon Courts, sister to the King of Cashel, and religieuse of the Celtic Church is at a crossroads. Needing to reflect upon her commitment to the religious life and her relationship to the Saxon monk Eadulf, she leaves Eadulf behind and joins a small band sailing from Ireland on a pilgrimage to the Shrine of St. James in modern-day Spain. Her first surprise on-board is the appearance of Cian, her first love, a man who had deserted her ten years ago, and who stirs up memories she'd rather forget.

As if this wasn't complication enough, on the first night out the ship is tossed by a turbulent sea and a pilgrim disappears, apparently washed overboard. But the appearance of a blood-stained robe raises the possibility of murder and death continues to dog the tiny band of pilgrims trapped within the close confines of the ship. Battling against the antagonism of her fellow pilgrims, Fidelma is determined to solve this most perplexing of puzzles before the ship reaches the shrine and the killer, if there is one, disappears forever.













Atlantic Visions, 1989. The Sister Fidelma books By Peter Tremayne Absolution by Murder Shroud for the Archbishop Suffer Little Children The Subtle Serpent The Spider’s Web Valley of the Shadow Hemlock at Vespers The Monk Who Vanished Act of Mercy *Our Lady of Darkness *forthcoming ACT OF MERCY. Copyright � 1999 by Peter Tremayne. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission except in the case of brief

on Crella’s arm. ‘I have been asked by the captain to make some enquiries. You see, under law, he has to present a report about Sister Muirgel’s death to the legal authorities at his home port, otherwise her family may take action against him for negligence.’ Crella’s eyes widened innocently. ‘But I am of her family and I know that Murchad was not to blame for her death.’ ‘Well, Murchad has to show that in law. Otherwise, no matter the good intentions of yourself, one of her closer family

worried her more than she cared to admit. Chapter Eleven The next person she should question, Fidelma decided, was the Breton mate, Gurvan, who had conducted a thorough search of the ship. She asked Murchad where he might be found, and the captain told her that he was below, ‘caulking’. She did not know what that meant, but Murchad had signalled Wenbrit and instructed the boy to take Fidelma down to where Gurvan was working. Gurvan was in a forward area of the ship where, it seemed, some

that she had let slip more than she had intended. ‘I merely meant that your curse and invocation were not responsible.’ Sister Gormán considered that for a moment. ‘But a curse is a terrible thing and I must atone for my sin. Yet I cannot do so by forgiving Sister Muirgel, nor by feeling guilt myself.’ ‘Just tell me this, Sister Gormán,’ Fidelma said, beginning to feel irritable at the self-centred attitude of the girl and her attachment to a belief that one was responsible for Sister

die a longer and more agonised death trying to survive in these seas.’ It was true that the brooding, rocky coastline with its frothy, angry waters was no place to go swimming. Perhaps the old fisherman had a point. ‘If God wants us to live then He will save us. There is no use struggling against fate.’ Fidelma had not pursued the conversation for it was not a subject of which most fishermen would speak. Indeed, the greatest curse that anyone could pronounce among these coastal folk was ‘A

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