:: Casaday Morning, the 92nd of Jhyel's Slumber ::
pound pound pound
POUND POUND POUND
Theodore Bramblerun felt like someone had run over him with a team of horses, and whoever was pounding on the door, certainly wasn't helping matters.
"Good Phoshaina, Theo, you sleep like the dead!” came from outside, just below a scream.
Next to him, Lizbeth stirred quietly; apparently a heavy sleeper. His mind turned back to the fuzzy memories of last night. Red wine seems to have played a large part. Lizbeth apparently had too. Cracking an eye open, Theo quickly noticed that Solenari was trying to punish him; it was far, far, too bright.
POUND POUND POUND
"Theo! WAKE UP! It's me, Saw!”
The pounding on the door, felt like it was playing out directly on Theo's head.
Reluctantly disentangling himself from Lizbeth's warm embrace, Theo rolled onto the floor with a thump, then proceeded to stumble awkwardly to unbar the door. In less than a grain of opening the door, Sawkin Redtail's brightly bedecked frame flowed into the room.
"New breeches, eh, Saw? It almost hurts to look at a red that brig...."
"It's Cory! His horse came back this morning; it's eyes were bigger than saucer plates and I could have taken a bath with the lather dripping from her” tumbled out in a stream of words.
"I thoug...” said Theo, as he tried to wedge a comment into the torrent of words that was bombarding him.
"He went off on another extravagant quest, for Tisden Weald this time. He rode off just as Solenari was waking on Unday morn. He apparently promised his new love interest, Duyna, quite a fetching lass by the way, that he would ride to the ends of Daed for her. She took him up on it and said that she'd would freely give her very soul if he brought her a flower plucked from the heart of the Forest of Shadows.” as he continued.
With one hand placatingly raised and the other holding his head, the unusually subdued Theo finally managed to say "You needn’t tell me the rest, Saw, I can guess. Let me get my things together."
"Are you coming back to bed Theo?” came a beckoning voice from the semi-dark bedroom.
Theo moved quietly towards the soft voice.
"Good Lady Lizbeth, that I might spend more time in the blissful embrace of your arms, but I must away, a companion may be in dire danger.” Theo managed to say between soft kisses. Before the lingering kisses could turn into more than lingering kisses, Theo collected his things and was out the door, with Saw moving quickly to his side.
"I have to get some things at my place first.” gasped Theo as the cool, winter air poured into his lungs.
* * *
Setting out with a full backpack and a throbbing head, Theo, with Saw at his side, began the journey to Tisden Weald. The hard, semi-frozen hills and rocky outcroppings stretched out before them, as the cool sun glared down at the two scurries.
"We should be seeing the wood by Jhinday, mid-morning most likely.” began Saw with pleasant mindless banter. "And a fine day it will be I'm sure."
And the day passed with talk of this and that, and on into the evening. As Poen began her slow ascent into the sky, a heavy fog began to pour across the Moorish highlands.
"It's getting dark, we should probably think about setting up camp.” Theo said, breaking into Saw's lengthy description of a beautiful scurry maiden.
Shivering involuntarily against the cold, Saw replied, "And a fire would be quite welcome."
* * *
As dreams of the beautiful Lizbeth began floating through Theo's mind, he pulled up his bedroll that much tighter against the cold.
"Good sleep, Saw, we have some way to go tomorrow."
Just as Casastan began to nip at the edge of Theo's dreams, a low growl erupted from outside his tent. A distorted and twisted shadow was cast upon the tent, illuminated by the molten silver light of Poen...