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CHAPTER XVI

They met him near the place where the games were played.

"Good my soul, Tibraide'!" cried the King of Leinster, and he gave Mongan a kiss. Mongan kissed him back again.

"Amen, amen," said mac an Da'v.

"What for?" said the King of Leinster.

And then mac an Da'v began to sneeze, for he didn't know what for.

"It is a long time since I saw you, Tibraide'," said the king, "but at this minute I am in great haste and hurry. Go you on before me to the fortress, and you can talk to the queen that you'll find there, she that used to be the King of Ulster's wife. Kevin Cochlach, my charioteer, will go with you, and I will follow you myself in a while."

The King of Leinster went off then, and Mongan and his servant went with the charioteer and the people.

Mongan read away out of the book, for he found it interesting, and he did not want to talk to the charioteer, and mac an Da'v cried amen, amen, every time that Mongan took his breath. The people who were going with them said to one another that mac an Da'v was a queer kind of clerk, and that they had never seen any one who had such a mouthful of amens.

But in a while they came to the fortress, and they got into it without any trouble, for Kevin Cochlach, the king's charioteer, brought them in. Then they were led to the room where Duv Laca was, and as he went into that room Mongan shut his eyes, for he did not want to look at Duv Laca while other people might be looking at him.

"Let everybody leave this room, while I am talking to the queen," said he; and all the attendants left the room, except one, and she wouldn't go, for she wouldn't leave her mistress.

Then Mongan opened his eyes and he saw Duv Laca, and he made a great bound to her and took her in his arms, and mac an Da'v made a savage and vicious and terrible jump at the attendant, and took her in his arms, and bit her ear and kissed her neck and wept down into her back.

"Go away," said the girl, "unhand me, villain," said she.

"I will not," said mac an Da'v, "for I'm your own husband, I'm your own mac, your little mac, your macky-wac-wac." Then the attendant gave a little squeal, and she bit him on each ear and kissed his neck and wept down into his back, and said that it wasn't true and that it was.



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Map of Ireland