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  • Chulainn, hero of Ulster, stood at the ford at Cooley,

    譯者: Lilian Chiu 審譯者: H_L Au

  • ready to face an entire army singlehandedly

    阿爾斯特的英雄庫胡林

  • all for the sake of a single bull.

    站在庫利的淺灘上,

  • The army in question belonged to Queen Meadhbh of Connaught.

    準備好隻身面對整支軍隊——

  • Enraged at her husband's possession of a white bull of awesome strength,

    這全都是為了一隻公牛。

  • she had set out to capture the fabled brown bull of Ulster

    這支軍隊隸屬康諾特省女王梅芙。

  • at any cost.

    她很氣她的丈夫擁有 一隻力量驚人的白色公牛,

  • Unfortunately, the King of Ulster had chosen this moment

    因此出兵要捕捉這隻 傳說中的阿爾斯特褐色公牛,

  • to force the goddess Macha to race her chariot while pregnant.

    且不計代價。

  • In retaliation, she struck down him and his entire army with stomach cramps

    不幸的是,阿爾斯特國王 選擇這個時間點

  • that eerily resembled childbirthall exceptChulainn.

    強迫懷孕的馬夏女神 參加雙輪戰車競賽。

  • Though he was the best warrior in Ulster,

    為了復仇,

  • Chulainn knew he could not take on Queen Meadhbh's whole army at once.

    她用和分娩相似的劇烈腹痛擊倒

  • He invoked the sacred rite of single combat

    他和他的整支軍隊——

  • in order to fight the intruders one by one.

    唯一的例外就是庫胡林。

  • But as Queen Meadhbh's army approached,

    雖然庫胡林是 阿爾斯特最棒的戰士,

  • one thing worried him more than the grueling ordeal ahead.

    他知道他無法立刻對抗 梅芙女王的整支軍隊。

  • Years before, Cú Chulainn had travelled to Scotland

    他要求採用單人對戰的神聖儀式,

  • to train with the renowned warrior Scáthach.

    希望能一次對付一個入侵者。

  • There, he met a young warrior from Connaught named Ferdiad.

    但梅芙女王的軍隊接近時,

  • They lived and trained side-by-side, and soon became close friends.

    有一件事讓他擔心的程度 超越眼前的嚴峻考驗。

  • When they returned to their respective homes,

    數年前,庫胡林 曾經旅行到蘇格蘭,

  • Chulainn and Ferdiad found themselves on opposite sides of a war.

    接受知名的戰士斯卡塔赫的訓練。

  • Chulainn knew Ferdiad was marching in Meadhbh's army,

    他在那裡遇見了費迪亞德, 一位來自康諾特的年輕戰士。

  • and that if he succeeded in fending off her troops,

    他們生活、訓練都在一起,

  • they would eventually meet.

    很快就變成了親密的朋友。

  • Day after day, Cú Chulainn defended Ulster alone.

    當他們各自返家時,

  • He sent the heads of some of his adversaries back to Meadhbh's camp,

    庫胡林和費迪亞德發現 他們在戰爭中處於對立方。

  • while the rushing waters of the ford carried others away.

    庫胡林知道費迪亞德 在梅芙的軍隊中,

  • At times, he slipped into a trance and slayed hundreds of soldiers in a row.

    如果他成功抵禦了她的士兵,

  • Whenever he saw the queen in the distance, he hurled stones at her

    他們最終就會碰頭。

  • never quite hitting her,

    日復一日,

  • but once coming close enough to knock a squirrel off her shoulder.

    庫胡林獨自守衛著阿爾斯特。

  • Back at the Connaught camp, Ferdiad was laying low,

    他把一些敵人的首級 送回到梅芙的營地,

  • doing everything he could to avoid the moment

    其他的屍體則被 淺灘的急流給沖走。

  • when he'd have to face his best friend in combat.

    有時,他會不小心走火入魔,

  • But the Queen was impatient to get her hands on the prize bull,

    連續斬殺數百名士兵。

  • and she knew Ferdiad was her best chance to defeatChulainn.

    每當他看到女王在遠方時, 就會朝她猛力投擲石頭——

  • So she goaded him and questioned his honor

    從來沒有擊中她,

  • until he had no choice but to fight.

    但曾經有一次近到 擊下她肩上的松鼠。

  • The two faced off at the ford, matching each other exactly in strength and skill

    在康諾特營地這一頭, 費迪亞德很低調,

  • no matter what weapons they used.

    盡他所能避開必須和最要好的朋友

  • Then, on the third day of their fight, Ferdiad began to gain the upper hand

    面對面對戰的那一刻。

  • over the exhausted Cu Chulainn.

    但女王對於取得她想要的 那隻公牛失去了耐心,

  • ButChulainn had one last trick up his sleeve:

    她知道若要打敗庫胡林, 她手上最好的牌就是費迪亞德。

  • their teacher had shared a secret with him alone.

    所以她去刺激他,質疑他的榮譽,

  • She told him how to summon the Gáe Bulg,

    直到他別無選擇,只能一戰。

  • a magical spear fashioned from the bones of sea monsters

    兩人在淺灘對決, 不論他們使用什麼武器,

  • that lay at the bottom of the ocean.

    在力量和技巧上都不相上下。

  • Cu Chulainn called the spear, stabbed Ferdiad to death, and collapsed.

    接著,在他們對決的第三天,

  • Meadhbh seized her chance and swooped in with the rest of her army

    庫胡林疲憊了, 讓費迪亞德開始佔上風。

  • to capture the brown bull.

    但庫胡林還有一招密技:

  • At last, the men of Ulster were recovering from their magical illness,

    他們的老師曾經單獨 和他分享了一個秘密。

  • and they surged out in pursuit.

    她教他如何召喚蓋伯爾加之矛,

  • But they were too late: Queen Meadhbh crossed the border unscathed,

    那是一支有魔法的長矛, 用海怪的骨頭打造而成,

  • dragging the brown bull with her.

    一直躺在海底。

  • Once home, Meadhbh demanded another battle,

    庫胡林呼喚了那支長矛,

  • this time between the brown bull and her husband's white bull.

    將費迪亞德刺死,

  • The bulls were well matched, and struggled into the night,

    接著他也倒下了。

  • dragging each other all over Ireland.

    梅芙抓到機會, 帶著剩下的軍隊衝進去,

  • At long last, the brown bull killed the white bull,

    去抓那隻褐色公牛。

  • and Queen Meadhbh was finally satisfied.

    終於,阿爾斯特那些被魔法疾病 纏身的人恢復過來了,

  • But the brown bull's victory meant nothing to him.

    他們立刻追出去。

  • He was tired, injured, and devastated.

    但他們慢了一步:

  • Soon after, he died of a broken heart, leaving behind a land

    梅芙女王越過了邊界,毫髮無傷,

  • that would remain ravaged by Meadhbh's war for years to come.

    且拖著褐色公牛一起走。

Chulainn, hero of Ulster, stood at the ford at Cooley,

譯者: Lilian Chiu 審譯者: H_L Au

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