Barrow Girl (Barnaby Taylor, 2017)

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Introduction

This is the story of a girl called Inteachán and the things she does. Inteachán does these things because she is very good at doing them. You might say that she was born to do them. You might also say that she has no choice. Either way you would be right. Inteachán does what she does because she has to. Or else the world will end. Simple as.

Inteachán does not always see things this way. Sometimes she likes to pretend that she is simply ordinary. Uneventful. Unnoticed, even, but someone this discreet can never really exist in a book that bears their name. Perhaps this is something to ask her if you ever get the chance?

The things that Inteachán does are also secret. Hidden. Obscure. Out of view. Unknown to most of the rest of the world. Occult, as in not apparent, but also just occult. They have to be.

Do you really think that the world would knowingly let an eleven year-old girl save it from complete and utter annihilation?

Bara Cailín Ident test

Hi Everyone

Here’s a test ident for Bara Cailín. I am trying to capture that particularly unsettling feeling that I always associate with British science fiction, supernatural and horror television shows from the 1970s – in particular, Roger Price’s The Tomorrow People (1973-1979); Children of the Stones (Peter Graham Scott, 1977); and Nigel Kneale’s wonderful Quatermass IV (1979).

Bara Cailín

A dark and filthy night. Black as black. A howling wind. A small mound in the distance. A lonely tree bent double on top. Nothing is abroad.

No one walks on a night like this.

But wait.

A small figure stands next to the tree. Gently lifting a large flat stone. Carefully tying a rope. Lowering the other end into a small black hole. Leering like a baleful eye in the frightening dark.

Inteachán tests the knot.

Inteachán is nine years old. She climbs down holes. Retrieving relics. Important things.

Tombs. Graves. Cairns.

Inteachán calls herself Bara Cailín.

Barrow Girl.