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The Adventures Of Fen Pocketsfull - Part Four

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It was early evening by the time Fen and Peter reached the gypsy camp. Fen noticed a young woman making her way swiftly across the camp towards them, her fiery hair rivalling that of the camp fire, her dark eyes flashing sternly as she nailed Peter with their gaze.

“Let me do the talking Fen, I know how to handle my sister!” Peter whispered. Fen noticed how the lad pulled his shoulders back and stood tall, his days catch proudly held in his right hand.

“Hello Amber, I brought a friend back for dinner…fresh fish dinner as it happens.”

Her brother did not fool Amber for one moment, still, a guest in their camp meant that she should act accordingly, although she was not sure such a guest would be welcome, she thought as she got a closer look at Fen.

“We shall talk later Peter” Then looking down at Fen she gave a tight smile and offered her hand in greeting palm up and outward.

“Welcome to our camp, please seat yourself by the main fire, and Peter shall serve you.”

At her comment, Peter knew he was in big trouble, for only the women and children served food whilst in camp. By saying this, his sister had effectively put him in his place! Scowling he opened his mouth to argue, but one look from Amber and he quickly snapped his jaw shut. Giving Fen a wry smile he took the Kender by arm and led him towards the fire.

“Nice to meet you miss!” Fen saw a pretty blue flower growing near the base of a tree, and pulling his arm away from Peter he quickly ran and picked it, skipping his way back to Amber, a huge grin upon his face.

“Not as pretty as you, but lovely all the same.” Fen bowed low, and then sprinted off towards the campfire, where several men were being served, what he hoped, was fish stew.

Peter glanced at his sister and was surprised to see a soft look upon her face. Why nearly every lad of age had tried giving her flowers, only to see them crushed in her left hand and feel the sting of her right fist as she boxed their ears!

“What's with the daft look on your face then Amber…don’t tell me you're falling for a Kender!?”

“Don’t be silly Peter!” seeing her brothers look of incomprehension, Amber sighed.

“I am the head mans daughter, when those others court me with flowers, they only do so because getting me as a catch will elevate their status in the group. The Kender has nothing to gain by offering me flowers, and for once it was nice to receive a genuine gift!” Looking at her brother sternly she poked him in the chest as they walked towards Fen

“You watch yourself with that Maisy Trout, she has her beady eye on you”

Peter gulped and gave a shiver, for once he agreed with his sister, Maisy Trout was bad news!

Fen spent the evening chatting and telling tales of his adventures. Every so often, he would pull something out of his pouch, holding it up he would muse out loud about where it came from. Where upon a man or woman would roll their eyes and calmly hold out their hand for the return of their property.

“Oh, is that yours? I was only borrowing it, really. I was going to give it back ….sometime” he would say

Several of the younger lads found Fen to be grand company, and he had tons of treasures tucked away in his pouches. So it was that while Peter regaled the camp with his and Fens run in with the Barons thugs, Fen sat huddled in a circle with the camp boys inspecting their treasures and showing off his. By the end of the evening, Fen felt he had made some grand swaps, why, he almost had enough marbles to start his own marble store! Kender loved nothing more than sharing the contents of their pouches with like-minded folk, and these gypsy lads were almost as good at it as Kender!

“…..and so Fen saved the fish and downed the two thugs at the same time!” Peter rubbed the red marks upon his neck and stood silent as his father and the other elders discussed his story. He knew he would be in trouble for going so far from camp in the Barons lands, never mind fishing the stream. Still he thought, it was their right to do so, and those thugs had nearly killed him over a few fish!

“We move out tonight” his father spoke to the whole camp. “The Baron’s thugs will not forget this slight upon their….honour, and will likely search our camp out and try to set fire to our homes, with us in it!”

Some of the younger males asked why they could not just fight the Barons thugs, they had done nothing wrong, and if they wanted a fight, they would have it! After much shouting and gesturing, the young men finally accepted that while the current Baron lived, their would be no justice for the gypsies should any of his employees meet with a knife in the gut.

“We have hopes that his son and heir will look upon us more favourably, you know what’s been reported, his turning a blind eye to our passing, never mind that he resembles Raven Brightspeed, the one who settled all that time back.” Turning to Fen, Peters father bowed low and thanked him for help in saving his son from certain death. Looking mighty sad he knelt to be level with the Kender and offered up his hand as he spoke.

“I am told that you took a fine rapier from one of the Barons thugs. Our scouts report that the weapon you have was not the mans, but a new sword the Baron himself had ordered, and his man was simply bringing it to him. We cannot afford to have that steel within our camp, nor fine Fen, you. For won’t the men tell of a gypsy and a Kender, and should you be seen with us, our whole group will be in danger, most likely be called up for theft from the Baron himself!”

Fen smiled at the man and tilted his head in thought.

“You know I was heading north before I met Peter, and will be continuing that way from here. Now I know from Peter that you will be going south, so you see, as much as I would love to travel with you, I really can’t, least, not this time.” Taking the head mans hand in his, Fen pumped it in farewell and after gathering his pack (which had been stuffed full of dried goods by the women) he hugged Peter to him and waved goodbye to the gypsies. Just as he entered the trees he heard Peters father call out to him, turning he waved his hand again in farewell.

“Master Fen, that is south, north is over that way” Pointing to the other side of the camp Peters father grinned at the Kender.

“Oh so it is! You know I never was very good with direction, did I ever tell you how I got lost in the spine of the world and met a dragon? No? Oh well, another time perhaps!” And off Fen Pocketsfull trotted north towards who knows where...

Migrate Wizard: 
First Release: 
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