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Old 06-30-2006, 05:47 PM   #395
Flame of the Ainulindalë
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They had run into Garmund and Lčođern on their way to their chambers. Although the situation might be better described by saying that Garmund and Lčođern had run to them.

“You must first come and see where our home is dear”, Modtryth tried to reason to Cnebba as he was intensively asking for a permit to go play outside with Garmund and Lčođern still for a while. “How could you come home if you don’t know where it is?”

“You could come and get me, ... if you’d find me!” Cnebba had answered, looking at the siblings as conspirationally as an 8-year old is capable of. “Or we could sleep outside? We could play that we are great heroes on a dangerous journey!” he continued with his eyes flashing. Garmund and Lčođern seemed to appreciate Cnebba’s zeal.

“I have a solution”, Stigend had broken in. Then he turned towards Garmund and Lčođern, kneeling a little to be nearer the level of their faces and asked: “If your father and mother let you stay up this late, would you like to come with us to see our chambers? You could keep company with Cnebba and we could all see our new home. Okay? I think the Lady here would have other things to do than follow our discussions about who is to come home and when and with whom.” The last bit of his speech had clearly not been directed to the children only. They had been so well received that Stigend was somewhat worried not to cause any unnecessary troubles or inconveniences to their new masters because of them.

The children had looked at each other, smiled and nodded enthusiastically in chorus. Lady Saeryn had smiled at the kids and after nodding gently to Modtryth and Stigend, she turned to lead them to their quarters.

The room was clean and cosy. By their standards it was almost luxurious. Clean linens on beds, a table and chairs of well made handicraft, even a wardrobe and a rocking chair! And it was clean. That last one really impressed the three. Yes, it also impressed Cnebba.

“I hope to see you all downstairs in the morning to have breakfast and to discuss your duties”, Saeryn had addressed them from the doorstep. Noticing Cnebba’s little shiver when he heard the word ‘duties’, she added kindly, smiling at him: “Yes, you too Cnebba. You will have a duty to play with Garmund and Lčođern everyday so that all your parents can do their work undisturbed by you three.” She had smiled at Stigend and Modtryth and left with the wishes of good night.

After Stigend and Modtryth had carried all their belongings to their room and Stigend had been shown where to take their horse and the cart, they both felt happy and tired. The children clearly were happy too, but unfortunately they seemed not to be tired at all. When in the game of ‘orcs and knights’ Cnebba and Garmund fell together over a pile of newly pleated clothes, Stigend and Modtryth realised, that the room wasn’t so big at all, at least tonight.

“You still would like to play outside?” Modtryth asked with a bit sarcastic tone that the children wouldn’t understand, but which Stigend enjoyed so much, when the point was not directed to himself. The children almost froze hearing her words. “Outside?” they yelled in chorus and were about to set out immediately.

“Hey!” Stigend called them loud enough to stop them at the door. “Cnebba, not for a long time. You’ll have to sleep tonight and you have all the days to play together. You’ll come back in an hour.” During his last sentence the kids had already turned around and run off. “You forgot the ‘no foolery’-part”, Modtryth said to her husband, smiling heartily. Stigend just smiled back and whispered in a laid-back tone “Nobody’s perfect...”, and winked an eye to her.

The two had taken each others hands and just felt happy. “We have been blessed today”, Modtryth whispered softly. “At least being fortunate”, Stigend answered quietly and ran his fingers through her hair. “We might even get these washed one day” he noted jokingly after a while, still smoothing her. Modtryth tugged him so hard that he fell flat on his back to the bed. “Oh, you!” she had protested, but they were both laughing. The first thoroughly happy laughs they had had in years.


They arranged their belongings to their new quarters and discussed this and that, but soon they felt really tired indeed. It was late and Cnebba hadn’t yet come. In the end Stigend took out to search for him. As soon as he got to the corridor he heard the door banging and then the joyous shrieks of children coming towards him from the downstairs. He settled himself to the upper end of the stairs and waited for the children to come up.

“Daddy, daddy, look what we found!” Cnebba shouted eagerly. All three gathered around Stigend as Garmund showed him the find. Stigend kneeled to see it better. It was a caterpillar, that much Stigend knew of it, but he had never been very knowledgeable with these things.

“It’s called a caterpillar. It will change into a butterfly one day.” He said to his keen audience. The children looked at him in disbelief. “This yacky thing will be a beautiful butterfly one day?” Lčođern asked, hardly being able to hold back her disbelief.

“Yes it will my little ones” said the voice from behind them.

“Daddy!” Garmund and Lčođern shouted and ran to him, Garmund still carefully treasuring the newly found wonder in his hand. Stigend rose up and greeted the man.

“You must be Garstan, the stoneshaper. My name is Stigend, I’m a carpenter.” They shook hands in eorling fashion, taking hold with their right arms of the others right arm just someway below the wrist and looked each other in the eye.

Stigend felt good with this man. His eyes were honest and open, revealing a kind of person he had used to appreciate. His grip from his hand was firm and strong, yet he seemed not to be one of those who wanted to impress others with too much force – or one of those whose hand felt like a cold dead fish.

Last edited by piosenniel; 07-01-2006 at 01:08 PM.
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