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Can I Come?

Short Summary: Gidon asks to join Imladech's army.
Date (real-life): 2010-11-22
Scene Location: Bree
It is early dawn, a good distance out of Bree. A hot summer day is promised by a cloudy sky and an already muggy feeling in the air. Here, a mile or two out of Bree, a group of men (and one woman) are pitching camp. This camp has sat outside Bree for some days now, slowly filling with supplies. Now it seems to be moving at last. 

Most early mornings the men could have been seen training under the scrutinizing eyes of their leader, Rinadan. But this morning he is among them men, getting the tents packed swiftly. 

A young man is coming towards the camp from Bree; a lad really, no more than 16 years of age. He hesitates as he comes nearer, looking around uncertainly - or as if he is trying to find someone.

The packing continues swiftly but Rinadan steps out of it, giving instructions for a few minutes. His grey eyes catch the young boy's approach and he watches him for a moment, not saying anything, before returning to his instructions, "Make sure it's tight!" He says, in his strange accent, "We need all the room we can get." 

That voice - Gidon's head turns to find Rinadan and he comes towards him, waiting until he isn't busy to speak. "Brev said y'could maybe use a tracker?" His voice is soft, slightly burred.
Rinadan turns, towering over the boy, his face still expressionless but, if anything, daunting. He is silent for long moments, regarding Gidon, his eyes especially noting his arm. At last he speaks, "Aye, Brev mentioned you've got some skill. What's your story, lad?" He asks. 

Gidon looks blank at that question. "Story?" he says, questioningly. "M'dad taught me. T'hunt, too. Done it most all m'life."
Rinadan nods, "You grew up in Bree?" He asks, "How is it that you know Brev? And how old are you, son? And what happened to your arm?" He spares no concern for the boy's feelings, not skirting around the question. 

"In th'woods, off by th'marshes," is the boy's reply. "Met him couple years ago; his folk were wantin' m'da for a guide east. Only he were gone, see, so I took 'em far as I knew." He looks down at the ground, but his voice stays even. "Feller come at me with n'axe, near kilt me." A pause, then Gidon remembers there is a question he hasn't yet answered. "Sixteen, bout."
"And why do you wish to track for me?" The man calling himself Rinadan asks, "Why not stay in Bree?" 

That might be a hint of color in Gidon's face. "S'my girl," he says, and turns still redder. "Can't get her pretty things just huntin' herbs round Bree." He stumbles through this speech, and by the end is blushing still more brightly.

Rinadan falters, his next barrage of questions suddenly falling short. He studies the boy for a moment, emotion roiling across his pale and noble features, but then turns his face away as though to hide it. With his back turned he rasps, "You will not come with me, lad." There is anger and pain in his voice. 

Gidon's face falls, and his head snaps up. "But..." he protests. "Why not? I ain't so bad, trackin'. An' I c'n hunt too, even - even with m'arm."
"Lad." Rinadan says sharply, "We're going to war, and to battle. I know--" He looks at Bree in despair, "I know you know nothing of those things - though you claim to have nearly died, so perhaps you can guess at them. But stay," He urges, "If your woman loves you, you do not need expensive trinkets for her. Remaining alive is a far better gift." 

The boy listens. "I know," he says simply. "I been t'Dunland b'fore. With Brev." His face is pale now. And when he speaks next, his voice is very quiet, and it falters for the first time. "Will - will you all die, then?" His gaze flickers to the packing camp, hunting for his friend.
"Have you just?" Rinadan asks, curious, and he looks back at his men as the second question is asked, "No. No, we will not die." He says resolutely, a hint of a dark hope lingering in his eyes, as though there is a deeper level to his words, "But in battle it is a very real chance. You are young, and you have a girl. Stay in Bree, where the world is free and trouble is far from home. But," The tall man admits, "If you insist on it, I will not turn you back. I need every man I can get." 

"I ain't so good at fightin'," Gidon admits. He glances back at Bree, then looks to the camp again. "I better talk t'Brev, maybe. Maybe he don' want me t'come." It is an effort for him to say that.
"That would be wise." Rinadan nods, "Tell me, what do you know of Brev? You've known him some years now, you say?" 

Gidon nods. He is young enough that the hurt at the thought his friend might not want him still shows in his eyes. Gruffly, he says, "He come from Dunland, with some other folk. Lookin' for something. Men or ruins or somesuch. He's m'friend. Stayed with me when I was off m'head fevered, an' his folk went on without him. Taught me t'hunt with a spear." Fiercer now, "S'the best man I know!"
Rinadan nods, allowing himself a smile. "Sounds like it, lad." He says softly, "I am lucky to have found him, then. And what of his woman?" He asks, curious again, "They're both such quiet folk." 

"I don' know nothing much bout her," Gidon says cautiously. "She's scary. Don' make her mad," he advises the older man. "She likes knives an' things."
Rinadan laughs now, drawing a glance from some of his nearby men, "Well, I've learnt all three of those lessons already - as have my men. Well any venture has its risks. If she is with Brev, she must be alright." His grey eyes, however, are thoughtful as he considers the pair. He speaks after a moment, though. "Anyway, son, he'll be around here somewhere. We're striking camp today - heading south. We have the provisions we need and I've probably gained as big a following as I could hope from these parts.' 

Gidon nods, a smile flickering across his face and vanishing. He turns to go find Brev, then looks back and says a little shyly, "Thanks." Then he is gone, weaving his way through the busy camp, making no more stir than a fish through water.

Date added: 2010-11-22 23:58:12    Hits: 57
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