Introduction:

This is the tale of how I found true love while participating in one of my hometown’s little known, but deeply cherished local traditions. The story contains no bestiality.

Sheepshaggin’Hi, I’m Jethro, I’m twenty years old and I live with my parents and two younger sisters on one of the small islands off the east coast. Although, to be truthful, that’s where I used to live, as I’m currently spending most of my days on the mainland, attending university. But the island will always be home to me and once I’ve graduated, I’ll surely go back. There’s just something special about life on a small, isolated island like ours that simply can’t be found anywhere else.

Until the day I’ll return to the island for good, I can only try to visit home as often as I could, which is nowhere near as often as I wanted. You see, merely driving from the campus to the harbor would take at least four hours. If traffic was heavy, five or six hours was more likely. And that was just the first part of the journey. From there on, the only way to the island was by a three-hour boat trip. Weather permitting, this boat shuttled back and forth three times a day. Bad weather, however, was liable to keep the ferry moored at the harbor for days at a time, especially during the stormy autumn and winter months.

While this remoteness was a bit of a pain to me now, the isolation was also what made our island unique, and is therefore essential to the story I am about to tell you.

As you can imagine, our community is largely self-reliant and very much independent of the mainland. It’s been like that for centuries, and even modern technology had not been able to change that. According to the tourist board, our ‘picturesque island’ houses about 19,000 people, and over 50,000 sheep that roam the fields and forests. Apparently, we are ‘known for our own unique and age-old traditions’, most of which are in some way connected to our ‘long lineage of brave fishermen’ and dedicated to ‘the men who sailed stormy seas to bring home nothing but the finest fresh fish’.

While most of our local festivities do indeed involve the sea and its bounties in one way or another, one was quite unlike all the others. That particular day is known as Linus Day, and it is probably the most cherished of all our traditions. Linus Day is celebrated each year on the day of the first new moon in spring and got its name after a nobleman that featured in one of the local legends. It was because of this holiday that I had decided to skip my classes and visit home for a couple of days.

The Legend of Linus.

A long time ago, there lived on the island a man named Linus. As the story goes, he was a wealthy nobleman who had everything his heart could desire. Good looks, lots of money, a luxurious home and scores of friends. His good fortune seemed complete when he met a beautiful girl with a smile that brought sunlight to a rainy day. He quickly fell in love with her and within weeks of their first meeting, he asked her to be his wife. She gladly accepted his proposal and a huge wedding feast was announced. Everyone on the island was invited.