Pedws Ffowk and St Elian's Well
PEDWS FFOWK was for three years afflicted with a complaint which nobody could understand. She was well and yet she was not well: she was sick and yet she was not sick. That is to say, she had no ache or pain, and her appetite was good. But all the time she became thinner and thinner, until at last she was nothing but skin and bone. She went to doctor after doctor, but they could not find out what was the matter with her. She consulted quacks also, but even they did her no good. Finally, she went to a wise man. He, after hearing her story, said, "Someone has put you into St. Elian's Well."
"What do you mean by that?" asked Pedws.
"Someone has gone to the woman who keeps. the well," answered the wise man, "and put your name on the register, and thrown a pin into the well, together with a pebble with your initials on it."
"Well, what is the harm of that?" inquired Pedws, who had not heard of the power of the cursing well.
"You are cursed," was the reply, "and unless the curse is removed, you will pine away and die."
"But what am I to do?" said Pedwa, now thoroughly frightened.
"You must go to the woman who keeps the well, and pay her to take you out of the well," was the wise man's advice.
Pedws lost no time in going to the guardian of the well, who, for a small fee, agreed to examine her register. Sure enough, the name of Pedws Ffowk was there inscribed, and the date of the entry corresponded with the time when she had begun to waste away. On the payment of another and a larger sum of money the priestess of the fountain agreed to take out of the water the stone on which the initials of Pedws Ffowk were scratched. From that moment flesh began to grow on her bones, and before long her clothes, which had hung upon her like rags upon a scarecrow, were filled out as well as they had ever been. Pedws lived to a good old age, and her greatest trouble was that she never found out which of her best friends had put her into the well.