Writing 2014-04-09

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Larrikan first greets his grandmother, Iorwen.  She smiles and is happy to see him, if somewhat reserved.  She introduces the others she is traveling with.  Her companion is a thin and unusually frail looking older fox called Agh of the Snow Tamers by the Trackers.  Scáthdacc of the Falcon Watchers by the Crow Singers is traveling with Laern of the Pathfinders by the Swift Folk.  The four Elders have a young pair traveling with them, too, Eorwn of the Snow Tamers by the Swift Folk, and Jaana of the Pathfinders by the Wind Dancers.


These introductions take a little while, and confuse many of the local humans who try and follow the conversation, lost in a whirlwind of hugs, kisses, clan names, random stories of the trip, and general catching up.  Larrikan knows there is tension between himself and the oldest Elder, Agh.  He can guess why.  The young pair can tell something is going on but are lost to what.


Scáthdacc, who is an old friend of Iorwen’s, and who Larrikan grew up around, runs interference, so the two non-Elders in the group remain uninformed.  Agh tells Larrikan, “We must speak, boy.  I will find you tomorrow.  Be ready.”  That last is said ominously.


The traveling foxes politely decline Aykuh’s offer of space at the inn, saying they are here early to stake out a good spot for the Gather, as it is only a few days out.  So saying, they take their leave.


Aykuh pulls Larrikan aside, and asks, “Is everything all right, Larrikan?  Agh seemed… unpleasantly tense about you.”


Larrikan tells her, “I hope so.  If it isn’t, please ask Iorwen to sing the other Dryad Ballad to you.  She taught me.”


Having answered but not reassured Aykuh, Larrikan goes back to Barrow Hall and goes to bed.  He expects the incredibly traditional old fox to test Larrikan at the crack of dawn.


Larrikan is surprised Agh is not around first thing in the morning.  He lingers near Barrow Hall for a while, then goes to the library to work on his reading and writing with Birkegeistezeder.


Late in the morning, Agh walks up to the table Larrikan and the dryad are working at.  Neither of them realize he is there until he introduces himself to the dryad, “Goodmorn, schöne tannendamme.  I hight Agh of the Snow Tamers by the Trakcers.  May I have this young one of ours, bitte?”


Larrikan has never seen a startled dryad before, and is impressed at the frail seeming Elder’s ability to have gotten here without her knowing.  Once she has regained her composure, Birkegeistezeder replies, “Ja, Sie können.  Ihre junge Fuchs weider zu haben.”


“Danke,” replies Agh, and gestures for Larrikan to come.


Birkegeistezeder almost automatically replies, “Bitte.” and watches the two foxes leave.


Larrikan, impressed, follows.  Agh leads him to a clearing nearby, which is as dry as is likely to be found, and settles in the sun.  He tells Larrikan, “Build us a little fire.  My old bones get cold.”


Larrikan isn’t sure he believes that, but does build a little fire.  Having done so, he sits with Agh.  The elder begins asking questions, listening closely to what Larrikan says.  The questions start simple, but soon focus on the rades and what Larrikan has done there.


Agh listens to it all, and says, “Pixies, eh?  Wait here while I go talk to them.”


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