Cachtice castle, Slovakia
In the sixteenth century there was a very evil noblewoman called Elizabeth, but she was also called the Bloody Countess, for bloody she was. She was very vain and proud and she wished to be ever young. When she cut her arm open she discovered that, once it healed, the skin around the cut was soft and silky. So she soon started using her servants’ blood, with the exception of her three fellow murderers, as bathwater. She had traps laid around the castle, like an innocent-looking suit of armor with one of the murderers inside. It had outstretched arms, a dagger in each hand, and when a maid was told to dust the face, the “armor” killed her and the countess bathed in the blood. She kept this up for a long time, so long that nobody could tell if it would ever end, killing more than 600 innocent peasant girls in a similar manner. That is, until her distant relative Juraj Thurzo decided to put a stop to the bloodshed. He and his men raided her castle and he imprisoned her in his own castle. Her castle was burned later. She is said to have died a few years later. She was supposedly buried in a mysterious place, though no one knows quite where. Perhaps if you go there you will meet her ghost, if you visit her castle… the Bloody Countess’s castle.
-by Lua Frontczak
Trencin Castle, Slovakia
The haughty lord of Trencin castle returned in great glory from a war against the Turks. He brought back with him abundant wealth and a great many prisoners. He also brought back the beautiful slave Fatima. He gave her as a present to his wife Hedwig.
It wasn't long before a Turkish procession came to the castle, headed by Omar, the son of a wealthy Turkish pasha. Omar wanted to exchange the Turkish prisoners for Christian ones in his charge. The lord agreed with this - but he didn't want to part with the enchanting Fatima. Omar offered great riches: gold, silver, and jewels could be the lord's, for you see, Omar was in love with Fatima.
"I will only give you Fatima," the belligerent lord said,"if you can beat water from the rock upon which this castle was built." Omar agreed to this, and spent the next several years chipping away at the rock. At first he had the help of his companions, but they soon went their ways, and only Omar remained. Love urged him on.
At the end of the third year, they pulled him out of the hole, half dead but clutching a pot of murky water. The lord of the castle kept his word. He returned Fatima to Omar. And now thanks to the new well, the castle could withstand any siege. It was unconquerable.
Centuries have passed, and the castle still stands, stunning and mighty. But in addition to the proud walls, the story of Omar's faithful love to Fatima has lived on. And couples still make their wishes there, at what became known as the Lovers' Well.
-by Lua Frontczak