The Giant of Six Hills

In those days, the giant race still lingered in the high places of the world, setting themselves up as kings over small mountains or rocky plateaus. They were an old and proud race, protective over the lands they called their own. Because giants had long since lost the art of animal husbandry, they lived off tribute from the terrified farmers they allowed to live within their realm. In the foot hills of the Pyrenees Mountains, dwelt one particularly ferocious giant whose territory extended over half the Kingdom of Aragon and all of Navarr. Known as the Giant of Six Hills, this monster bragged that everyday he eat six goats for breakfast, six sheep for lunch, and six cows for dinner, and if anyone refused to give him their animals he would take the animals anyway and eat the poor farmer for dessert.

Now Sir Colin, known as the Kind, was still a young knight when he first heard rumors about The Giant of Six Hills from fishers on the coast of Navarr. His young thirst for adventure had led him right past the gates of Camelot where even then the seeds of distrust and envy that would soon destroy the round table were already taking root and growing in those once noble hearts. But of all this Colin knew and suspected nothing, and his only desire was for good honest adventure. To this point his knightly exploits had been limited to the isles of Britain and Ireland, where had he and his companion the Lady Claire had spent almost three years happily exploring the many secrets and mysteries of that land. However, it was not Colin’s fate to remain on the British side of the channel, and one day he boarded a boat bound for the Norman coats.

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It wasn’t long before rumors of the Giant of Six Hills found him. Following the whispers and legends Colin made his way south to where small fishing towns spatter the shores of Navarr. Here the fisherman all told tales of the infamous giant that terrorized those lands. They boasted of the giant’s ferocity, of how he defeated six armies, or maybe sixty armies, how on each hand he had six fingers, if not sixty, and how he wielded a club six feet long, or was it six and sixty? Following the fearfully fingers that the fishers and farmers alike pointed when asked about the monster, Sir Colin traveled inland, picking the steep and narrow trails that lead up into the mountains. 

It did not take long before he found the giant. Though the immense creature did not have six fingers on either hand and there was no wooden club around of any length, he was still an impressive specimen. Even seated, the giant towered over Sir Colin. His head, large and lumpy, rested low between his mountainous shoulders. Pinched between the monster’s bulky fingers was some unfortunate farm animal’s rib which the giant appeared to be using to clean his surprisingly small and purplish teeth.  

Saluting, Sir Colin approached his adversary, “I am Sir Colin the Kind and I am here to do battle with you.” The giant looked up, wrinkled his nose and responded.

“I am the Giant of Six Hills. I am the greatest giant in the world… of the world… I eat six goats for breakfast, six sheep for lunch, and six cows for dinner, and I will eat you for dessert.”

“Really? You are the greatest giant in the world?” asked Colin, a little skeptical of the new information.

“Yes! And I am again hungry... always hungry … hungry again always…?”

“Always hungry?” offered Colin helpfully.

“Yes, always hungry… again.”

“Well, before you eat me, how do you know you are the greatest giant in the world?” the knight asked, moving past the grammatical confusion.

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The giant glowered at him, annoyed by the question. “I have traveled for six hundred days and crossed the entire earth and I have killed every other great giant… all the great giants… the great giants everywhere.”

“But your giantlyness, don't you know that it takes seven hundred days to cross the world?” More then a little concerned the giant cocked his head to one side as if the concept were quite beyond him. “Yes, it is seven hundred days wide. You see, on the northern most border, you have to swim for an extra one hundred days. Then, you will find and island where there is another giant who calls him self the giant of seven islands. And he also claims to be the greatest giant in the world.”

Aghast, the giant gaped at him, “The Giant of Seven Islands??”

“Yes, seven” said Sir Colin gravely, “…not sure where the other six islands are, but he says seven. Come to think of it, I'm not sure where your six hills are either.”

“Over there,” muttered the distracted giant with a vague gesture at some lumpy boulders behind him. Sir Collin started to explain why the giant really should be sure if he was the greatest or not before he started boasting about it, but The Giant of Six Hills wasn't paying attention. Instead, he was pulling three enormous potato sacks out of a crevasse in the hill and filling them with what the knight could only assume were are provisions for his journey north (mostly just rocks and bones, though he did pack two pots of wilting cat mint and a door that must have once belonged to a someone's house).

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“Wait here,” the giant grunted over his shoulder, “I’ll be hungry when I get back, so don’t go anywhere.”

Sir Colin saluted, wishing the giant luck and a speedy return. He waited as the giant meandered his way up the mountain and gradually out of sight before setting up camp for the night.

The Giant of Six Hills was never heard from again, and, though Sir Collin was heralded as the vanquisher of the greatest giant in the world, he often told people that there was actually one greater then the Six Hills Giant.