The plot structure follows the reluctant hero model. William is called to adventure multiple times and at first refuses. The unusual circumstances of his birth are (1) his umbilical chord tied in a true knot and (2) being kissed by the angels. When he eventually accepts the call and goes to Northern Ireland, William enters the unknown where he encounters various archetype and supernatural characters, assorted trials, etc. In the end he is rewarded, but with a tragic Irish twisting of the term.