Writing Home: Wargs and Tombs


Hell of a time in Angmar. Glad you weren’t here, it was a real pain in the arse. We went to some tomb, real dark and nasty, to meet up with another former Wayfarer. This one was an elf, name was Rainercar or something. Everyone called her Rain, though. Feel bad for the newer Wayfarers, they’re getting introduced to all the weird ones: that guy who betrayed you all apparently, a drunk Hal, and now this Rain elf who really didn’t seem to care much what happened to anybody.

Someone triggered a big trap and a bunch of nasty stuff got dunked on us. Slime or something. Real nasty. Unfortunately a couple people got poisoned and Bitra got the worst of it by far. We kept pressing on, though, cause Rain insisted on getting some journal or whatever. Finally found it but then a bunch of wargs appeared.

Could’ve gone my whole life without knowing that wargs can talk. The leader was a real mean one, red, could talk. Had a big grudge against Oendir, apparently he killed her father or something. Even offered to let us all go, except for him, but no way were we leaving him there with a bunch of wargs ready to rip him apart. Thankfully Garrett got Gil and Bitra to agree to leave though, so they were safe. Obviously the rest of us made it out okay too, considering I’m writing you right now.

As thanks for helping get that journal, Rain gave everyone a gem. Seems real special, she said it was crafted in Eregion. Looks special and even Oendir seemed to act like these were priceless or something. Not exactly something I feel like carrying around who-knows-where, so I’m enclosing it here for you. Maybe I can smith something with it when I get back.

Bitra’s looking real bad but the healers here say she’s going to be alright. Just needs some rest. The others that got hit with the poison are doing good, too. Apparently we’re going on a real long trip next, so we’re just healing on up before hitting the road. Miss you every day, babe. It just isn’t the same without you.


Writing Home: Hobbits and Hal


Things keep getting weirder and weirder. You would’ve loved tonight, and I wish you were here. We’re in the Shire, right on that party hill where we got married. There was some ceremony for a warg fight, apparently happened a decade ago. Shoot, where was I a decade ago? Probably getting drunk and teasing Frank or something.

Anyways, it wasn’t much of anything — we just happened to be in the area — but then we had to go rescue the food from some fool tweens. Crazy part of that was that Hal was with them. Of all people! Drinking and having a good time and all that. It was real funny: Oendir convinced them we were all elves and that he put a curse on them, so they ran off. Took all I had in me to not bust a gut laughing.

Hal’s doing alright. Hoping he’ll head on back to Bree, like Oendir was asking him to. Think he could do with some head-on-shoulders putting. Ceremony was alright, boring with speeches and stuff, like usual. Food was real good too.

Shoot, this is a boring letter. Then again, it’s the Shire. And hobbits. How exciting can it get, right? Well, minus that warg stuff anyways.

If it wasn’t already past midnight, I’d ride Bess on home right now, even if I had to turn right around and head back. It’s only a couple hours’ hard ride, if you do it right. Got to get to bed though, instead. Being so close but so far is annoying. Just want to curl up in bed with you for a week. (Don’t let Jaemy read that part.)

Love you,


Writing Home: The Old Forest


Ran across Eirikr this time, which was right nice. Well, except for where we ran into him: the Old Forest. Bugger spends more time in here than I thought he did, given how easily he just wandered right through it. He’s doing good, gave Oendir a small ring for his token… was real surprised to see that, but hey, considering I left my pendant up on Weatherhill, I don’t got much room to talk.

The Old Forest is a pain in the arse. We were wandering around looking for a big flower (the kids found it with Godric), but then the forest… put us to sleep or something. Was real weird. We all passed out and woke up all over the place, but good thing Sirifast and Oendir were nearby. Found them and we made our way back. Had to go past some big old tree. Oendir called it “Old Man Willow.” Stupid thing made Sirifast pass right out, falling into the water, but we carried him out. Don’t know why it bugged him so much, I didn’t feel anything.

The kids got leeched all over, seems like Gil got the worst of it. Bitra, too, but she kept them all together somehow. It’s real good Godric was with them. He and Eirikr got them out, and found that huge white flower. Thing was taller than me!

Drew a small picture of it for Jaemy. Tell her to imagine it’s as big as me, because it was. Miss you a bunch. Garrett’s an okay person to share a tent with, but he ain’t you. Really wish you could be here.

Love you,


Writing Home: Dead People Should Stay Dead


Well, it was definitely drier. Probably too dry. Some crazy shit went down yesterday. We got word about Cardolan and someone trying to fix it all up. Made it real obvious it was a Wayfarer, too, so we went on to do that and get a token. Apparently it was some guy named Rennec. Real mercenary, that one. But hey, he helped us with a token and we helped cleanse that pile of rubble, so that’s right good for me.

Cardolan was, don’t act so surprised, full of dead things. Wights. Gaunt-lord. Fun stuff. Why can’t dead people just stay dead? I’m alright, don’t you worry none. Got knocked over and dragged around by some magic chains, but it’s nothing big. Bitra already cleaned me on up and gave me some bruise salve. You trained her real well, love. I know you were talking about not being sure you would be any good at it, but you are.

Oh, yeah. And that Cirieldis woman from Dol Amroth showed up. Apparently she can turn into a swan. She and some other swans ripped apart some of those wights. Never thought I’d see that in my life. Right weird, really.

I miss you all more than I can write. I’m not a poet or anything. So I sketched something real fast for Jaemy, instead. Don’t got time for painting, or supplies, but it’s a right nice view here and I thought she’d might like it.

Love you,


Writing Home: Swamps Stink


Did you know that swamps stink real bad? We had to go trudging through the swamps in the Lone Lands and it was awful. Apparently there’s some kind of earth-kin people and they gave us directions to go talk to a swamp-witch to get a token from her.

Hey, did you know that the Commander’s got another son? Well, I don’t think it’s blood relations — he’s half-orc. Anyways, he helped us get there. Man, that swamp-witch was ugly. Gave us some rabbit foot or something, so hopefully the trip wasn’t a waste. Told Oendir some weird prophecy about being successful helping Fionwe but not coming back from it. That’s probably a load of crap, though. She’s just mad because that half-orc kid threatened her into helping us.

Gonna take a day or two of washing my boots before they stop stinking.

Cor, I miss you so much, babe. Hope you’re all doing alright there. Don’t know where we’re off to next, but here’s hoping it’s somewhere dry.


The Sunshine: So Angry


It’s been three weeks already and I only got one of your letters. It’s been real frustrating not knowing what’s going on, and now I’m pissed because I have to write you a real bad letter right off the bat. I’m sorry. I hope this actually reaches you. I’m just sending it to the city with your name on it, like you said.

First off: I’ll be fine, I’m healing, don’t worry. But it’s been a real shit week for me, having to deal with the Watch and pain and stuff.

So I was walking home after family dinner when some asshole ambushed me and shoved me between some buildings, trying to attack me. Well, I mean, he did attack me. Smashed my face and neck up good. Looks like I spilled purple dye all over my face. I managed to fight back after a bit, punched his head into the wall, but I hurt my hand doing it. Ran off to find someone from the Watch, but sliced myself bad on the way out. Found Sam patrolling, he managed to grab the fucker. So he got caught at least.

The healer said I broke m he broke my collarbone, my wrist is sprained real bad, and I’m going to have a nasty scar on my hip. But my face should heal up fine.

Mum and Nellie are going crazy over me, it’s only been a day and I’m already over it. They won’t let me get out of bed and keep offering to keep me company. Sure, my arm’s in a sling but I didn’t break my leg — I can walk around! It’s real sweet of them and all, but I just want to be left alone. Can’t believe I let some bastard get the drop on me, especially when he couldn’t even take a punch. I’m so pissed off. I miss you. I want to hug you. I don’t even care about the sex right now, I just want to hold your hand with my good one. That’s not true, I always care about the sex. But you know what I mean. Please don’t show that part to Os.

I really hope things are going better for you down there. The stuff you talked about before leaving was awful and dangerous and you better be careful, Burns, or I’ll hobble my way down there and set you straight. Remember, you promised.

Oh, if you tell Os, could you keep an eye on him? I don’t know if him finding out is a good idea, but if you really need to talk about it, just try not to worry him too much. I don’t want him thinking he’s got to come running back home. I’m fine. I’m healing. It’s just bullshit and it sucks. Guess I got a lot of time on my hand, now. Get it? One hand. At least it’s my writing hand. You know what? I might actually write you that stupid book. I’ve got the time now. Hell, I’ll even name the characters Fronk and Kimmers.

I can’t wait until you’re back, Frank. It’s getting colder here and I think I saw some leaves changing color the other day. This is supposed to be your season. We’re supposed to throw leaves at each other and you’re supposed to mull more of that mead with your cousins and we should be hiding to make out in the pumpkin patches until they find us and––

Cor, the pain medicine is kicking in. I’d scratch out that last part, but I’m sure you’ll love it. I miss you. I love you so much, Frank. Don’t get hurt, and come back home when you can.

Your woad sprite (yes I love it, shut up),

The Talk

“Hey, Os.”


“Um, got some time t’ talk?”

“…Yeah. Yeah, c’mon in, Kimby.”

“Thanks. Um…before you start yellin’ at me, I just wanna say I don’t think I did anything wrong.”

“And what makes you think I’m gonna start yellin’ at ya?”

“I mean… I ‘magine you’re prob’ly pretty pissed.”

“And why ‘d I be pissed?”

“I dunno. You’re my brother. It just…seems like somethin’ that’d piss ya off.”

“Well, yer wrong. And I a’ready told Frank yer both adults. Be together ‘r don’t. I dunno what ya two even want from me at this point.”

“Maybe t’…have you be happy ‘r somethin’?”

“I’ll be happy when I can wrap my damn head ‘round it, a’right? I just… ‘S weird, okay?”

“I mean, I kinda get it, I freaked out at first too, but why’s it this much of a problem for you?”

“Seriously? You’re seriously askin’ me this. You’re my sister. He’s my best friend. Pretty much like a brother t’ me. It’s like my brother an’ sister are together, and that ain’t right.”

“Well, we are and it is.

“I ain’t tryin’ t’ break you two up. Why’s it matter so much iffen I approve? You’re gonna do whatcha want anyway.”

“Oh, I dunno, Os. I mean, you’re kinda one ‘a the most important people in our fuckin’ lives or somethin’.”

“Maybe gimme more ‘n a few days before breakin’ down the door and askin’ why I ain’t sendin’ you flowers, then.”

“You are so immature sometimes!”

“Fer once, Kimby, I’m honestly bein’ calm about somethin’ that’s botherin’ me a bunch. Just…get out if you’re here t’ yell at me t’ do…I dunno even know what. Carin’ too much, I guess.”

Carin’ too much??”

“Yeah! ‘Cause if ya two don’t work out, guess who gets stuck in th’ damn middle?”

“And you’re just so certain we ain’t gonna work out, huh?”

“I didn’t say that.”

“But you’re thinkin’ it, Os. You’re thinkin’ it.”

“No, I ain’t.”

“So…what, we just need t’ avoid ya for a while, until you’ve decided yer over it?”

“At this point, I’d settle for both of ya not shovin’ week-old relationship sex in m’ face.”

“Frank panicked! Thought you were gonna… wait, week-old? What are you even talkin’ about?”

“He came t’ me just last week, askin’ permission t’ date my sister. What’re you talkin’ ‘bout?”

“I… We’ve… Oh.”

“…How long, Kimby?”

“…’Bout a…month ago? Had our first date. He didn’t…?”


“…Well, there ya go. Yeah. S’ been about a month since I kissed ‘im. It all just kinda…fell int’ place from there.”

“Since ya kissed ‘im? Was that even a fortnight after ya ran int’ each other here?”

“Listen, I ain’t gonna sit here and justify m’self t’ you.”

“Ya met your childhood rival then two weeks later you’re throwin’ yerself at him, and ya don’t think that requires even a lil’ bit of justifyin’? Kimby, what the bloody hell are you doin’?”

“I dunno! And I was not throwin’ myself at him. I just kissed him. And… I couldn’t ‘splain it, anyways. It was…”

“Was what?”

“Ya know how a magnetic piece ‘a metal flies and sticks t’ another piece…?”


“Was like that. I can’t put it any other way and I ain’t gonna bother tryin’, either.”



“I need some time, a’right? Just…time t’ wrap my brain ‘round it.”

“Fine. I… I didn’t expect things t’ go this way, but… I’m real glad they did.”

“I’m still right mad at ya fer not tellin’ me sooner, but… Get over ‘ere.”

“D’ya really think me tellin’ you a month ago that I was thinkin’ of kissin’ Frank would somehow have made th’ situation better for ya?”

“Yeah, ‘cause I could’a locked ya inside yer room.”

“Ya do know I figured out a way t’ sneak outta there by th’ time I was twelve, right?”

“…I did not. What else ‘re ya hidin’ from me?”

“None ‘a your business, big brother.”

“Fair ‘nough. But… Kimby. I gotta say this: if he hurts you, I’ll kill ‘im. If you hurt him, I’m never forgivin’ you.”

“I’m not too worried ’bout that.”

“That makes one ‘ve us.”

Sunny Afternoons

Just felt like throwing together a small montage of my characters enjoying a cool, sunny afternoon.

The sun’s rays shone through the newly cleaned window pane, casting a warm glow on the wooden floor in Osbeorne’s bedroom. Satisfied with his work, the blacksmith grinned and trudged out to the main room. He opened the front door, letting a fresh, cool blast of impending spring air rush into the house. Winter held many memories, some of the more recent ones dear to him, but Os was very much so looking forward to leaves on the trees and warm nights at this point.

He stretched his arms and closed the door, heading back into his bedroom. His bed was currently littered with ribbons, decorated papers, and twine; in the center proudly stood his two gifts: one for Jaemy and one for Kimby (a small painting and an intricate shelving unit, respectively). Sparing a moment to think on both gift recipients, he sighed and ran his hand down his face; by far, the two most complicated women in his in life. Thankfully he had ‘Ridia. What’d he say to her that one time? She was complicated, too, but in a good way? A soft, lopsided smile took over his lips as he remembered that rainy day a few weeks ago. Complicated, indeed.

The smell of an old tome conjured many feelings and thoughts for Aeldes, but chief among them was always amusement. This text had, during its initial inscription, smelled like ink and parchment and potential; now, most considered it to smell of decay and the loss of a different time. That could not be further from the truth! Its smell was layers upon layers of existence and living and learning! So many had learned from this piece: their fingers laid upon it as they studied, translated, copied. It had history and depth which made it immeasurably special.

Her finger lightly glided above the page, conscious of keeping as much oil from her skin from contacting it. This text was not new to her, but she also did not have first-hand experience of this particular time period. It was a fun one to read, partially because she was not trying to compare it to her own admittedly fluid memory. Oh, it looked like that mistake was copied over from the previous manuscript; it was tickled her fancy when something like that happened. A copied mistake today could be tomorrow’s new theory on an entire branch of science. This one was minor enough to not drastically affect anything, so she smiled quietly and left it unmarked.

Pale blue eyes reflected the bright blue sky as they watched a cloud lazily drift overhead. Kimberly’s lips slowly twisted into a petite, dreamy smile. What she did might have been rash — Nellie straight up called it stupid — but Kimberly was confident with the decision. It had to be better than getting all tongue-tied and stuttering every time he winked at her. There was something inexplicably…magnetic about him, and she gambled that taking a risk would even things out. If only a little. Now that the ice had been broken, so to speak, maybe it’d be easier for them to actually…talk. She wanted to talk to him.

One note of a small chuckle floated up from her lips as she contemplated the absurdity of the past two weeks.

Who’da thunk?

Blood-stained clothes bounced down the steps of a farmhouse, their owner rushing to grab more water from the nearby well. Ada grimaced as the sun blinded her and kept pushing the crank as fast as her arms allowed her to, the heavy bucket jerking up the rusty chain awkwardly. What seemed like an eternity later, the young woman — she was going on fifteen, after all — ran as fast as she could with a heavy bucket of water in both hands.

This baby wasn’t going to deliver itself, and her mom needed more water.


The Sunshine: Nothing

As soon as the door to their apartment slid closed with a click, Kimberly was comforted to hear her mother’s deep, happy voice ring through the main area.

“Hey, Kimmy! Took ya long enough. How’d it go?”

Kimberly smiled widely, slightly out of breath from the three flights of stairs she just ran up. She quickly half-skipped across the room to place her bounty on the dining table next to her mother’s tailoring. “Big ol’ basket of purples and yellows! Five silver.”

“Ha! Good job, sweetie. We’ll get to dryin’ them after dinner.” Natalie Brook rested her current sewing job in her lap and smiled as Kimberly walked into the kitchen.

Glass, glass, glass… Several cabinet doors squeaked while Kimberly searched for a glass. Just as she finally found one and finished pouring herself a reward of orange juice, her mother shifted in her chair and asked a question.

“It don’t matter none for dryin’ them, but why’re they kinda crushed? I told ya to take yer long walks before buyin’ the materials.”

As the reason some of those flowers were flattened immediately flashed through her mind, Kimberly couldn’t help but feel some blood rush to her face.

“Oy, there, look — ah, Kim! …Miss Brook! Sorry about that! I wasn’t watching where I was going.”

Shaking her head, Kimberly walked back out into the main room and took a sip of orange juice before waving the glass in her mother’s direction. “I didn’t! I… ran into Frank. Like actually ran into him. Smushed a couple of flowers. Nothin’ more.”

“Ah, cor. Please tell me you two didn’t make a scene in th’ middle of th’ market.” Her mother’s hand lifted to rub a temple.

The hairs on the back of her neck rose as Kimberly indignantly exclaimed, “Mum!” She was better than that.

Her mother groaned, her other hand rising to slowly circle around the other temple. “…Listen, I know yer an adult but sometimes I just get worried. You two’ve never gotten on.”

That…was true. Was. Rather than even attempt to explain it, Kimberly just quietly sighed and acquiesced. “Yeah… I know. It was…fine.”

It was fine. It was…more than fine. Why? Her attention started to drift as both the heat of the sun on the roof and the whirlwind of the past few days spirited her off to a tawdry daydream.

“–That poor boy. He’s been a good friend to yer brother, through thick ‘n thin.”

The swirling clusterfuck of hormones in her stomach that had yet to settle suddenly screeched to a halt when her mother’s well-meant scolding cut through fantasy.

He’s been a good friend to yer brother.

Her brother.


“…Os.” It was all she could do to hide the horror in her voice as her brother’s name escaped her lips in a whisper.

“Yeah, that’s yer brother. Whaddabout ‘em?” Her mother – their mother – looked in her direction with a confused twist of the brow.

Kimberly quickly averted her gaze and swallowed hard. Fuck, fuck, fuck. Her feet began to immediately carry her toward her room’s door. “I’m…gonna go take a nap.”

Her mother’s voice immediately changed from confused to concerned. “Kimmy, it’s broad daylight out!”

“Yeah, yeah.” She waved her hand and just kept going on through the doorway, mumbling.

“If yer comin’ down with somethin’, you best tell me so I can get some extra water!”

Continue reading “The Sunshine: Nothing”