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Old 03-17-2011, 10:04 AM   #53
Pilgrim Soul
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Join Date: May 2004
Location: watching the wonga-wonga birds circle...
Posts: 9,763
Mithalwen is lost in the dark paths of Moria.Mithalwen is lost in the dark paths of Moria.Mithalwen is lost in the dark paths of Moria.Mithalwen is lost in the dark paths of Moria.
"Well Jessamy isn't here and I am not sure I want to be" said Silas.. "what ever it was that made those prints... the horses don't want to hang around either" . He had resumed his seat on the waggon to better control the fretful ponies - docile beasts who normally needed no more than a twitch of the rein to restrain or guide them. Bryn's horse was equally restive, flicking his ears back, hearing things his master couldn't it seemed.

Seth had the sharpest hearing of the three brothers; he didn't spend his working life filtering out the sound of hammer on anvil or saw on bough. He heard, was sure he heard a soft growl from the forest behind them and saw a long low shadow passing through the trees. It was enough for him to grab the reins off his brother and let the ponies have their head. Hazel and Willow needed no encouragement and set off at a canter with Bryn riding hard at their heels.

On the box of the waggon Silas had taken back control and was berating his brother "What do you think you were doing, back there?"

"Getting us away from a bear - don't try and deny it, you saw the tracks as clear as I did, and I heard a growl - and so did the horses. "

"But a bear.. how can there be a bear in the old Forest and no one heard of it?"

"Not many folk go in there do they? Only rangers and the like and they don't talk much" replied Seth, before a too hideous thought crossed his mind " What if it was that that made Jessie scream?"

"Then Silas is going to have to explain to Mum and Dad that Jess has been eaten by a bear" said Bryn, now alongside..

"That's what I love about you Bryn, your unfailing optimism... and why do I have to be the one who tells them? " replied Silas.

"Because you're the eldest!" chorused his brothers. Silas had played that trump card too often in earlier times.

The path jinked back between two mounds and revealed what had previously been concealed. The horses were halted as the brothers gaped in amazement at the strange sight. There in the midst of the bleak snowcapped barrows and stones was a brightly coloured caravan, lit up inside and with the remains of a small fire glowing near it. A pretty little grey mare whickered into her nosebag nearby and their own horses answered.

"Woudn't be my choice of campsite but it explains those other tracks... " noted Bryn as they drew closer, wondering who would choose to linger in this forsaken place. He had no time to ponder more since first a large dog sprang out, barking, from under the wagon and caused his horse to shy and then the door to the caravan burst open to reveal a figure, small, but somehow regal - the thick folds of the borrowed cloak draped elegantly from her slight shouders, her hair was a backlit cloud of gold around her head. Less elegantly a mug was clasped in her hand.


"Nnnnnnnnghhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhllll" Jessamy squealed happily. With a cookie clamped between her teeth she stumblled down the steps to cannon into the nearest of her brothers which happened to be Silas. He had happily passed the reins now to his brother, leaving him to cope with the joyous assaults of Duke who bounced around barking happily having some inexplicable fascination with horsedrawn vehicles. Bryn consequently had an easier time to master his own horse and take some amusement in the plight of the brother who, in family tradition, was "the one with most skill with animals".

"Is she alright?" he called returning his attention back to his sister.

"Alright? She's drinking tea and eating biscuits!!" Silas' relief manifested itself as anger and he found himself shaking his sister "You little fool, have you any idea what you have put us all through you ginger-pated ninny - fog, and snow and bears. What did you think you were doing?"

"Leave her alone Silas," Seth, having calmed horse and hound, pulled her away from his elder brother and half crushed her against his chest "I'm sorry I was horrid to you, Jessie, I'll make it up to you, I promise" .

The world seemed to be slipping away from Jessamy... she must be dreaming she had never seen Silas so angry and Seth.. why was Seth apologising to her? She couldn't believe it but her superior, sardonic brother seemed to have tears forming in his dark eyes while Silas' blue ones glittered in his wrath. Jessie started to cry as her eldest brothers vented their anxiety in argument. But there was Bryn, on his own feet now, solid, even tempered Bryn. Bryn who picked her up easily and gently and sat her back on the waggon steps.

"You alright half-pint?", Bryn straightened her cloak and ruffled her hair.

Jessamy nodded. "Karl found me...I hurt my ankle but Willem has bound it up"

"Willem? Who is Willem" Bryn asked gently wiping away her tears.

"Someone Karl knows - this is his caravan. He is really kind. So is Karl" She looked up to where her rescuer lurked awkwardly in the doorway...

"And what about Edwin? Is he here too." Jessamy nodded

"Inside.. he got too cold or something" she elided "He seems to be getting better now" Jessamy wasn't going to lie again but she didn't see the need to tell the whole truth at the moment. "Willem gave him some tea with honey and stuff in it."

"This Willem sounds quite a character - where is he?"

"I don't think he has gone far .. he was just taking a look around I think, make sure we were safe" . Bryn nodded and standing turned his attention back towards his elder siblings.

"Do you think that you could manage to be pleased for a moment that we have found Jessamy safe and more or less sound? And not kill each other? You know the whole point of this effort was that we ended the day with the same size family as we started it ...and we are going to have to go through all the whys and wherefores when we get home so lets leave it for now. The main thing is that Jessie is safe, thanks to Karl and Willem - whoever he may be".

Last edited by Mithalwen; 05-15-2011 at 03:04 AM.
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