Tag Archives: magical beasts

Eighth Entry: The Redcap


red cap for bestiary 8

The castle should be empty, but as we pass through open doors, the sound of iron-shod feet confronts us, pattering madly. We came wondering, but not, perhaps, believing – now, we know the story to be true. It is the Redcap, haunt and horror, too fast to escape and so we do not move. 

We stay together, watchful, wary, and when the sun sets, hear the screams and run together, but we know what the creature will do.  The sound of feet, the sound of mad, dark laughter – we watch, from a distance, wishing to inspire no more death, as he bends over a body.

An old, small man he seems, but armed with a long iron pike that he grips in talons fiercer than a predator bird’s. His feet beat against the ground while he stands, one then the other, heel then toe.  His cap is in his hand, and he drains blood with it, the red invisible in the dark. He hums, but the melody is nothing human.

Having been witness to the horror, we retreat, but slowly. If the blood begins to dry, he’ll seek another victim. If we run, we might go far, but never fast enough. 

Better not to be noticed. Better to hold our breaths.


Cockatrice References

Redcap Wiki
Redcaps at Mysterious Britain

Image Credit: JB Monge

Have a suggestion for a creature that belongs in the Bestiary? Leave it in the comments!

Seventh Entry: The Cockatrice


cockatrice bestiary 7

In the wilderness, impossible things are sometimes born that make their way into the world of man – yet it is also the case that occasionally the opposite is true. We have met such a beast, and survived to speak of it – the wizard’s dragon, the sorcerer’s apprentice. 

If the morning is quiet in farm country, and there is no crowing of roosters to welcome the oncoming dawn, be wary of walking alone. Perhaps one is near you, slaying those whose signal is as a death cry – small creatures turned to stone will tell the tale. The rock in the shape of a rodent may once have been a living mouse. 

Bird-footed, bird-faced, born from an egg a toad has hatched, the cockatrice bears a deadly venom and even to be perceived by it is death. In its glare is a swinging scythe – like Medusa, broken beauty of the ancient world, all that look directly upon it turn to stone. 

We see it from above, safe in our watchful silence, perusing the reflection of his horror and mystery in still waters. The creature itself avoids its own gaze, drinks slowly with a tongue like a lizard’s. When the beast rattles his tails and disappears into the brush, we breathe easy again. 


Cockatrice References

Cockatrice Wiki
Cocktrice at the Encylopedia Britannica

Image Credit: Jivu

Have a suggestion for a creature that belongs in the Bestiary? Leave it in the comments!