The Last Spell

~ A Short Story by Andre Norton

last spell


Synopsis ~

It is the time of King Arthur. Merlin is stricken with a spell by Morgause. Nimue the King’s daughter is given “The Last Spell” by Merlin, and then becomes “The Lady of the Lake”.


Write-up from a fan ~

A woman fights desperately, first to get her man to a place of safety, and then to keep him alive; he must not die -- his powers are too badly needed in this world for her to allow him to slip across into the next one. She remembers how it was when they first met, her a child, King's Daughter, living in the Lady's lakeside hall; he an adult already strong in his wizardly powers. He, Merlin, schemed and swore oaths until he had managed to get her bonded to him as his apprentice.

Together they strive to keep the darkness from falling upon Britain but are thwarted by Morgause three times. Now she has managed to poison Merlin and Nimue fight to save him. He awakens long enough to give her The Last Spell, that of Time. She used it on him, knowing that her actions will be remembered as a betrayal, but the spell will put Merlin into a deep sleep that will last until his powers are once again needed by Britain. ~ SL


Bibliography of English Editions ~

  • Ancient Enchantresses (1995) Edited by Kathleen M. Massie-Ferch, Martin H. Greenberg & Richard Gilliam, Published by DAW, PB, 0-886-77677-5, No. 997, $5.50, 352pg ~ cover by Jean-Francois Podevin ~ 19 original tales of sorceresses from around the world and down through the ages. ~ With an Introduction by Melanie Rawn

Write-up from the back of the paperback ~

The Powers of Enchantment have been drawn from numerous sources down through the ages. And many of those wellsprings - from the ancient goddesses and gods to the forces of Nature and the Earth itself, to the magical lore and symbols of cultures from around the globe - are represented in this all-original collection of tales about enchantresses both famous and infamous.

Kathleen M. Massie-Ferch, Martin H. Greenberg and Richard Gillium have called upon such top fantasy talents as Melanie Rawn, Jennifer Robertson, Andre Norton, Harry Turtledove, Tanith Lee, and William F. Wu to weave the spellbinding legends that await you in ANCIENT ENCHANTRESSES.

From a poignant recounting of unrequitable love, to a new interpretation of an "evil" Arthurian sorceress, to the working of a sorcery more powerful than death, here are timeless works about those most fascinating and dangerous women ---

    9 • Introduction (Ancient Enchantresses) • (1995) • essay by Melanie Rawn
    13 • The Lady's Gifts • (1995) • short story by Melanie Rawn
    27 • The Last Spell • short story by Andre Norton
    36 • The Offering Place • (1995) • short story by Diana L. Paxson
    52 • Suffer a Sorceress • (1995) • short story by Harry Turtledove
    67 • Saxon Flaxen • (1995) • short story by Tanith Lee
    78 • Beyond the Wide World's End • (1995) • novelette by Susan Shwartz
    100 • The Seven Flowers of Autumn • (1995) • short story by Claudia O'Keefe
    117 • Ancient Enchantresses of War • (1995) • novella by Kathleen M. Massie-Ferch
    162 • Her City of Ladies • (1995) • short story by Steven Rogers
    173 • Unmasking the Ancient Light • (1995) • novelette by Deborah J. Ross [as Deborah Wheeler]
    196 • A Dying at Blackwater • (1995) • novelette by Hugh B. Cave
    217 • The Shiska • (1995) • short story by Mike Resnick and Lawrence Schimel
    223 • Mehitabel Goodwin • (1995) • short story by Lawrence Watt-Evans
    243 • A Craving for Oysters • (1995) • short story by Mary Frances Zambreno
    255 • On the Sun and Moon Mountain • (1995) • short story by William F. Wu
    275 • But One Son Living • (1995) • short story by Lois Tilton
    289 • A Wind from Heaven • (1995) • short story by Laura Resnick
    299 • In His Name • (1995) • short story by Jennifer Roberson
    307 • Erdeni's Tiger • (1995) • novella by Pamela Sargent
    352 • Last Words (Ancient Enchantresses) • (1995) • essay by Kathleen M. Massie-Ferch 



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