Thursday, December 6, 2012

Nineteenth Beginning 32: Worldshore

[Blue means this is an outline]
They took a brief, postprandial walk along the darkened shore, to aid digestion and heighten suspense.  Then they packed, or rather, moved the packs that Satbada had packed down to the beach.  And Narnemvar cast the spell. 

There were only a few fillips at the beginning, then he turned and held out his arms, as if begging permission.  With a deep, rolling voice Postlavanderon said, “As prince of Hommel Isle, viscount protector of the royal prerogative and collector of wharf taxes on kegged, jarred, and bottled beverages of mood altering composition I hereby give Narnemvar, friend to the royal family through many brothers permission to call the fleet.  May it come swiftly in our hour of need.”

No one could take their eyes from the prince once he began to declaim.  So no one saw or heard Narnemvar casting the rest of the spell.  All they saw was the prince.  All they heard was the prince.  After he finishes speaking, all they had in their minds was a wish that the fleet would arrive to assist this worth man quickly.

“This may take awhile,” whispered Narnemvar.  “The nearest boat could be aways off.”

Bus soon there was a scraping as a sunken row boat slid out of the water an up onto the sand.

“Back!  Get back far enough and it will have to come high up on the beach to get to you.  It will stop roughly two steps away.”

Postlavanderon moved back.  Water leaked out of the boat through a hole punched near its waterline.  The women mumbled and began to edge away from the shore.

Narnemvar stepped over.  The boat was half full of rocks.

Soon another boat slid out of the water, and another.  All were breeched.  All were weighted.  One had a few bones in it, as an added accessory. 

I think we’re seeing why there are no fish nets and no drying fish in this village. 

perhaps Aunt Erminetrude was besieged by importunate suitors and the family was forced to preserve her maidenly dignity?

Postlavanderon looked back at the retreating women.  “We will give them the benefit of the doubt for now.  But we will remember this cove.”

“Ah, the burdens of nobility.”

dozens of drowned boats littered the beach before the first floating boat arrived.  Postlavanderon stepped down the beach so that it would not come too far out of the water.  As it beached, the occupants lifted clubs with the menace of truly frightened men.  Narnemvar and Postlavanderon looked at each other.  Narnemvar grinned and greeted the visitors while Postlavanderon drew himself up in regal dignity.

We’re sorry to have taken you out of your way, my good fellows.  But the prince, here, requires a boat and there are none to be had this night.  We’ve been told that the men are out fishing.

“There are no men here, the two in the boat said there are only women and . . . something else.  Leave while you still can, but don’t think of taking this boat.  This will only take the two of us and our fish.  Run fast and you may live.”

“I think we will wait for a better boat.  said Postlavanderon. 

“you see, he gave me permission to call the fleet.  your boat just happened to get tangled in the spell.  as soon as the right boat comes, we’ll stop the spell and you can go”

“I have a question for you good men, the prince said.  How deep is this cove.  If a big ship came, would it go aground?  We don’t want to damage any ships, we just need to return to my father’s island.”

This seemed to reassure the men somewhat. 

“Oh, it’s pretty deep.  Even the foreign ships can up in up to, oh, about three of this boat’s lengths out.”

“Thank you.” The prince nodded and looked out over the sea.

“Another question.” the jovial voice was Narnemvar’s.  “You’re out fishing rather late.  Is that the custom around here?  Are there special things to catch at night.”

“It’s a location thing.” one of the men finally said.  “Anywhere near here, it’s usually safer to fish at night.  Folk who fish nearby in the daylight tend not to return.”

“The terror that comes under cover of light!” Narnemvar chortled.

“’S’not funny when it’s your family hungry and you need a bigger boat to go out farther.”

“No, I suppose it’s not.  Would you like some water while we wait?”

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