ISSN 2731-3747 Episode 007 Lanis By Rusty Knight Previously in episode six, ‘Friends?’: Lanis, now known as Drake, journeyed to Hang...
By Rusty Knight
Previously in episode six, ‘Friends?’:
Lanis, now known as Drake, journeyed to Hangela’s on an errand on behalf of Lenden. To Drake’s credit, and against her better judgement, she resolved to become friends with the merchant Hangela. Things did not work out well. Drake discovered upon returning to Lenden, that he doesn’t consider Hangela a trustable person.
Now in episode seven, ‘Contrary’
Spring 10 Bear
Drake dishes up the fried meats and tubers onto their plates, then serves their morning meals, along with the dairy milk delivered yesterday.
Lenden smiles and he takes a bite of the spiced fried tubers. He says, “You’re almost good at cooking, practice more. Today is the supply run and sadly you need to go to Hangela’s again. Today you hitch the team on your own, drive to Hangela’s, buy the produce, goods and return. After you stock the cupboards and shelves, then the library is yours to use.”
Drake groans loudly, “Really? I have to go to Hangalots? Why, Uncle?”
Lenden shrugs, and he answers. “Because she has the best selection with reasonable prices, if you haggle properly. And, it is closer than Berry Way Market, with less hassle. I’m giving you a one-hundred Flair purse and a list. Come back with everything on the list, at minimum.”
He hands Drake a large sack of coins and a narrow strip of rag-paper with fine jalnoric script, listing his demands in point form. There are thirty-eight items on the list.
They finish eating, and then Drake does her cleaning. Once satisfied that she has completed her indoor chores, Drake walks out to the carriage house and the stables, hitching up the carriage with the two draft mares. It takes Drake over an hour of trial and error until she figures out the proper setup. Once she is ready, she travels without incident, along King’s Avenue, then Tickton’s Street to Hangela’s Mercantile.
Inside the shop, Drake bolsters her resolve, knowing she will be dealing with Hangela frequently, haggling deals, winning some, loosing some.
Hangela greets Drake cheerfully. “Good-day Drake. Come in and buy.”
Drake shivers, cold with dread. She looks at Hangela, and acknowledges the merchant. “I am here to buy supplies for Master Lenden.”
Hangela smiles. “Come in. I have been having a slow day. You have my attention.”
Drake’s innards turn with Hangela being so nice, something will go wrong.
Half-an-hour later Hangela rudely says, “No, you silly girl, the tubers are from south of here. They are from a fief where they grow them just for me. You pay what I ask. Not what you want.”
The negotiations go worse from there for Drake, with Hangela demanding more, giving less.
Spending less than forty-six Flairs and purchasing all of Lenden’s supplies, Drake doesn’t buy extras. Drake loads the over five-hundred pounds of supplies into the carriage by herself.
Drake then drives home, and there she spends over an hour unloading, before struggling to unhitch the carriage and mares. By the time she gets to her room with the tasks complete, it is three hours past gods-set and Drake simply flops into bed without washing up or eating. She quickly goes to sleep.
Spring 11 Bear
Lenden looks over at Drake and says. “You did well yesterday, doing everything on your own without loosing the carriage or team, doing the errand without incident, and even dealing with Hangela on her terms.”
Drake tosses the half-full coin sack at Lenden, and she sits down at the table without responding. She wipes more sleep from her eyes.
Morning meal looks half cooked as she takes a bite, nearly gagging.
Lenden twirls his fork in the mystery pottage on his plate. He looks up at Drake. “Are you going to be like this all day, every time after you go for supplies? I won’t put up with it, you know?”
Drake drinks some of her lukewarm tea. She puts down the mug and looking at her plate says. “So?”
Lenden says, “Let’s go to the lab and study today for three hours, then you can spend three hours studying on your own. If you don’t burn down the lab today, you can spend time in the library, say two hours after the lab time. Then we’ll eat. I may have an idea after that.”
Drake drops her fork into her food and stands. Picking up her plate and Lenden’s, she begins cleaning away the unfinished half cooked morning meal.
The two work half-heartedly on Lenden’s ‘Fly’ spell for three hours, then Lenden dismisses Drake.
Lenden asks, “What is the spell you’re trying to learn, Drake?”
Drake walks Lenden to her benches and shows him her notes and equipment. She grumbles to him. “I found a copy of levitate in your works, so I’m seeing if I can work it.”
Lenden whistles and then replies. “Shooting big aren’t you. That’s above anything they’d have taught you in the University. It’s a class-two mage spell, Drake. You sure you want to tackle that, even a class-three mage has difficulty with that one.”
Drake looks at her work and then shrugs, saying. “I have four hours of study into it already. Sure I’ll give it a shot.”
Lenden laughs. He says, “You’re just getting started. You’ll put in at least twenty hours of study, figuring the intricacies of that out.”
Looking downtrodden, Drake almost reconsiders, then her resolve tightens and she tells Lenden. “Once I start I don’t quit or give up. I’ll learn this.”
Lenden bows to Drake and offers her. “Then more power to you, my student. I bow to your resolve. As such, tomorrow we go and purchase you your own riding horse at Tamel’s Cartwright.”
To be continued …
In the next episode eight, ‘Reining’
Drake and Uncle take the carriage south to Tamel’s to purchase a riding horse. After sorting through the stock, they return with Lenden giving Drake news and a job to last a life-time.
© 2016 Rusty Knight with Inevitable Unicorn Press
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