A Bard’s Tale (Excerpt) 12/11/18
Neil walked up to the cart and retrieved his lyre from the seat. He didn’t want to risk it getting damaged by his brother if he needed the cart for anything. Walking quickly up to his room, he set the lyre down on his bed and returned outside to the barn where his chores would begin. He mucked the stalls in the barn, putting fresh straw down. He fed all the livestock and was halfway through the cleaning the chicken coop by the kitchen door when his mother came out.
“What are you still doing here?” There was a slight panic in her voice.
“I promised father I would finish my chores before I left. Credence will have to wait,” Neil said, feeling a slight sense of defeat as he thought about the rest of his chores.
“You need to go get ready to leave and put your chores out of your mind. Your father understands farming in a way that neither of us ever could,” she winked as she touched the side of his face, “but the chicken coop and the rest of your chores will still get done, one way or another.”
“I promised,” Neil said as he startled a chicken.
“I’ll finish them for you then,” his mother said. Her tone was one he had only heard a handful of times in his life, but it was one that not even his father dared to argue.
“Are you sure?”
“A true bard never leaves his audience waiting,” she winked as she helped him to his feet. “Go to your audience, maybe today is the day your fate changes for the better.”
He gave her a smile and a quick kiss on the cheek before he ran into the house to clean up and get ready to leave. He stepped into his room, seeing immediately that his mother had laid out fine clothes for him, packed his lyre in its case, left him a bag of traveling food, and set up a wash basin.
Neil shook his head with a smile as he stripped down, washed, and put on his clothes. The fabric was soft and moved easily over his skin like someone running their fingers up his arm. The muted orange tunic stood out against the deep black of the trousers. When he tested the flexibility, he noted that there were no restrictions to his movement, regardless of which way he moved.
A knock on the door drew his attention from the clothes as he grabbed his lyre. “Hello?”
“You look so handsome!” his mother cried as she opened the door and covered her mouth.
“Don’t be so dramatic, Mother,” he replied walking over to give her a hug, “but thank you.”
“These clothes belonged to your grandfather,” she said playing with the fabric, “You look so much like him it’s uncanny. It’s as though I’m a little girl again.”
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