Old Stories

Story of Littlemom

When I was a young lad, I used to spend a lot of my time cruising the length of West Karana. This was an area where I learned to improve my skills - offensively, defensively, knowing which way I was heading, and later on, in foraging and tracking, also in corpse recovery, for there were many times I spent looking for my body, and then I spent hunting anything else. I managed to increase my skills by doing different favors for others, such as bringing Linaya Sowlin many bottles of nitrates to help her in her farming, and helping to keep the pathways cleared of many bandits that tried to waylay many a traveler. Later, I would return to Qeynos to give Chesgard Sydnen many red sashes, try to save the Ambassador, do my banking and shopping, and of course, quaff a beer or two before I headed out to do it all again. There were also times that I just loved hunting on my own, chasing lions and spiders for their hides and silk, willowisps and skeletons for their lightstones and bones. I also spent many a day running from Froon or Choon, Brigands who felt they had a score to settle, werewolves, ghoul messenger, and of course, the occasional hill giant trying to make toe jam out of me. It was on one of these many excursions that I met Littlemom.

The day I got my Tree form spell was a great day for me, for I found it useful in medding and waiting for the odd bandit to spawn. One day, after a fierce fight with bandits in the far mountain range near the North Karana border, I ran down to the nearby farmhouse to take time to med and recover. I had cast Treeform on myself and then sat to med. All of a sudden, there was a commotion amongst the birds that caused me to stand up and look around to see what was the matter. And there before me was such a vision of loveliness that I was glad that I was in treeform so I wouldn't embarrass myself with the dumb look that must have been on my face. There, with a basket of laundry to be hung on the line between the house and the barn, was Littlemom. She was of sturdy country stock but had a touch of the elven look to her. She moved with grace and precision, and it was uncanny the respect shown to her by the surrounding creatures. Bears would stay clear of the growing corn so as not to damage them, wolves would not mark her many fruit trees, and lions would come close to her purring! Birds filled the trees, even me in my treeform, just so they could sit close to her, and a passing hill giant at first toed the dirt, then gave a shy wave to her with his hat in his hand, and that's when she smiled!
Littlemom's smile thunderstruck me to the core! It was a smile that would make Day chase away Night just so it could bask in its warmth! The birds greatly inspired gave forth their best songs! The fruits and berries glowed in their deepest purples and reds! And the hill giant blushed and ran giggling to the hills! It was then that my treeform wore off, and I startled them all! Before Littlemom could move, I introduced myself and begged her forgiveness if she thought I was spying, but that I was just medding my wounds, which were healed in the warmth of her smile. That's when she stole my heart, for she smiled once again! It was then that I knew I had to ask her if she wouldn't mind being my wife. It was a quiet exchanging of vows that we held, just the two of us, between the undead ship and the pyramid, for there was washing to be brought in and fruit to be canned. A year later, Branwenne was born.
Branwenne was a spirited child and quickly grew to be a fine young lass. It was about this time when a young waif of a boy came into our lives. Salvor was a young cleric elf who had just escaped a severe thrashing at the hands of the ghoul messenger. He had stopped at the farmhouse with just a sliver of life left when Littlemom came out and glared at the ghoul! The ghoul, greatly ashamed by the look he just got, ran off in the opposite direction, while Branwenne and I had just returned from saving the Ambassador for the umpteenth time when Bran saw Salvor lying on the table that Littlemom had put him and started bandaging him furiously to aid in his recovery. Salvor valiantly tried to sit up, but Branwenne put her hand on his chest to settle him down, and that's when she flashed him that smile! The look on Salvor's face! At that moment, I knew I was looking at my future son-in-law!
After Branwenne and Salvor were married, it came time for them to move on, as all children must. Littlemom packed them with many stews and fish rolls and, of course, her famous fruit pies and sent them on their way. There were many tears in our eyes as we watched them head to the North Karana border and on to the many adventures that were to be theirs. Time passed, and I also had to adventure abroad to increase my skills and also to see the world that was around me. I asked Littlemom if she wished to come, but she told me no, that she was tied to the land and that it was her duty to see to the farming of the land and that the everyday chores got done. She made me promise to drop in often, to tell her the tales of myself, Branwenne, and Salvor. This I have been able to do, telling her the perils of unrest and misfortune that greatly chilled her, the antics of frogloks in Guk and the crowded beaches in North Ro that greatly amused her, and the erotic actions of the dark elves in Mistmore Castle or the mistreatment of slaves in Crushbone that caused her cheeks to tinge pink.
Lately, the stories of Branwenne and Salvor that I used to pass on to her have become few and far between, and this greatly saddens her. As any parent knows, that hand that once was engulfed by yours, or the body that once sat on your shoulder, or the tear that you wiped away is no longer there, yet you still can feel the warmth of their touch, the weight of their body, or the taste of the salted tear on your lips. So I hope that any of you who may read this, should your wanderings take you near West Karana, drop in! Maybe you might catch Littlemom picking berries or weeding the cornfield, or even hanging the laundry or putting another pie on the sill. If you do, say hi and maybe pass on some news you may have heard of any of us. If you do, I guarantee that she will brighten up your whole day by giving you one of those smiles!

Take care all and quest well,
Mystikos Samaritan.

© Copyright 2023 Kenneth G Brennan

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