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Old 03-20-2004, 06:22 AM   #15
Stormdancer of Doom
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Shield ROHAN: Aylwen's opening post

First Post: Bellyn

Black faded into shades of grey that, in turn, smoothed into the beige-cream color of the parchment Bellyn was sketching on. The fiddler continued his tune, and Bellyn scribbled down the main outline of his body while he was still playing. Bellyn knew that if she wanted to get the proportions and body just right, she’d have to work fast before the fiddler stopped playing his lovely instrument. Of course the young man did not know about Bellyn’s drawing of him, and if he caught her staring Bellyn knew she’d blush crimson and crumple up the paper.

So, working quickly, Bellyn finished the outline of the instrument and man just as the last note began to ring and fade into the air. Bellyn sighed and put down her charcoal stick. The young minstrel began to playfully argue with the Innkeeper and his daughter about the performance. Examining at the drawing with slight disgust, Bellyn shoved it into the empty pack on the floor next to her feet, promising herself that she’d finish it later. Looking back at the table she occupied alone, Bellyn inwardly scolded herself for dallying and not doing her work. Maps were splayed out on the table in front of her, and a quill pen was left dry next to a jar of the finest black ink that Bellyn had made herself.

Bellyn returned her gaze to the fiddler, and was taken aback to find that she had caught the young man’s gaze as well. The fire flickered and lit Bellyn’s papers but she kept her attention on the minstrel, and Bellyn wondered what he was thinking so deeply about. Then his attention was called away as one patron of Ealdor’s Inn asked the fiddler about song writing. At this Bellyn turned away and went back to her papers.

Until part of the conversation being held between the fiddler – it seemed Liornung was his name – the old man, and the Innkeeper’s daughter caught Bellyn’s attention.

"A mad blacksmith," Blostma said, "is running north of here. The boys here in Edoras have been wishing with all their wills that they were older, for they think it would be an enjoyable sport to track him, especially as he's crazy and might be some danger."

Bellyn looked up from her maps for perhaps the hundredth time and smiled faintly, thinking that the boys of Edoras were certainly right in their desire for adventure. Bellyn, as an artist and a woman, had spent many years drawing and copying maps of places that her father the cartographer had been to. Yet Bellyn hadn’t left Edoras in many years, and even when she had it was not for adventure, it was not for glory.

"It would be an adventure," The fiddler, Liornung, said. "It's been a long while since I've had an adventure. You say, Miss Blostma, that he's headed north from here? And you do mean Edoras by 'here' and not simply Rohan?"

Bellyn became more and more interested with each passing moment. Oh, how she longed for a chance to be out in the world. Bellyn could recite any coordinates of any place in Middle Earth, and could recall lore of places long gone and countries faded and lost to the memories of normal men, but Bellyn had never been to any of them. Still, Bellyn knew what her father (who was away, like always) and brothers would say if she suggested or even hinted at her traveling off on some wild goose chase. Bellyn knew they would say naught for a while, then laugh, then ask if Bellyn had lost her mind.

For a few minutes the conversation became lost to Bellyn, and she began packing up her maps and readying for home. She wanted to speak to the fiddler, though, to find out what he knew or what he thought of the “crazy blacksmith” situation. Before Bellyn could stand from her seat or do anything, something else in the conversation caught Bellyn’s attention.

"Master Liornung, I'm challenging you to follow the blacksmith and catch him, and when you've finished your adventure return here with your song," The old man smiled slyly for just a moment, but then locked glances with the young fiddler.

Inaudible mumbling ensued, and Bellyn tried her best to listen and make certain that she did not miss anything important. What Liornung said next made Bellyn smile and made her glad that she was so well acquainted with the geography of Middle-Earth.

"You are quite noble. I would readily do this if only to honor your most noble heart, but I do not know the lands well enough to track a man, and I am poor for following a map."

I know the lands well enough! Bellyn cried to herself, excitement beginning to show on her pale face and color beginning to come back to her freckle-dusted cheeks. And I am the best at following a map, even if it is one of the few things I am good at!

"You sit there, good Secgrof, and I shall sit here, and we shall think together and come up with some way to do this task."

The young artist knew it was time for her to speak, and she knew it as well as she knew the exact distance from Minas Tirith to the lands of ancient Lothlorien. Bellyn grabbed her pack of maps and slung it over her shoulder before leaving her spot by her table and shyly walking up to the fiddler Liornung.

“You do not need to think for long,” Bellyn began, getting Liornung and Secgrof’s to turn and look at her. “I can help! I’m a cartographer,” Bellyn knew it was a bit of a lie, for she had never really been anywhere, but she told herself hesitantly that knowing where everything was on a map was almost as good as having been there anyway. “I’m a cartographer, and I know all the lands of Middle-Earth! I can help you track any man you must find, Master Liornung!”

Last edited by mark12_30; 03-20-2004 at 07:44 AM.
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