“Cold night, for sure.” A man’s voice said behind her. “Best not to stay outside too long, might catch a cold.” He had walked past and going down the stairs while still talking to her.
“Thanks, I won’t.” Lurren replied while watching where he was going.
“If you need any wood come by my lumber mill during business hours.” Bolund called over his shoulder as he neared some building.
“Wait, are you Bolund?” Lurren chased after him.
“I am.” He turned around to find the beautiful woman standing below him. “A hearty welcome to Falkreath! Haven’t seen you before.”
“I met your brother inside, he mentioned you.” She was leaning one shoulder against the wooden beam outside of a store.
“He likes going there, but that Valga Vinicia is a gossip and a troublemaker.” His tone seemed disgusted at the mention of the woman’s name.
“Are you a Stormcloak, too?” Lurren asked in hopes of inquiring about Ralof.
Bolund was leaning on the pole opposite of Lurren. “Nah, had to keep the business going while my brother went to serve. Family business, we inherited the store and mill when our parents died. I wanted to fight though, still do.”
“Oh, I see. Well, thank you for talking with me.” Lurren was growing tired and need to build camp.
Bolund nodded, “Sure thing, my pleasure.” He watched her walk off into the wooded area then disappeared in the Gray Pine Goods general store.
While Lurren was building a camp, the tavern was in full swing with complete chaos. Vilja and Princess were tabletop dancing while Sven, Thrynn, Nikolai, Narri, Valga, Solak, Delacourt and Nadina sang and played instruments. Vilja declared that they start a petition to give the new High King to allow tabletop dancing in taverns throughout Skyrim. The lovely princess was enjoying giving Golldir, Thrynn and Nikolai extra special attention, as she stayed focused on those handsome, handsome faces.
Lydia stood guard at the door in her housecarl mode protecting her thane and all her followers.
Lurren was lying alone inside the tent playing Frostybite with her own fingers.
The man’s voice said ‘Hello’ and the tent seem to shake from his knock. Lurren looked out to find Bolund standing there with a plate of food atop two blankets. He held out the pile to her, “Gonna be cold tonight, here are some extra blankets for you. Some food for the morning.” Solak had told his brother about seeing the tent out back when he came home. Bolund couldn’t sleep knowing she wasn’t in a warm dwelling and took her the supplies. The plate of food consisted of an apple, sweet roll, several carrots and bread.
Lurren was taken back by his kindness, considering who she has been dealing with it was a wonderful change. “Thank you.” She said while accepting the blankets and food from him. “Want to come in?”
Bolund looked down and shook his head. “Can’t. Have to work tomorrow and need to get back home. Another time, maybe.”
“Sure thing.” Lurren answered as she shifted the pile in her arms. “Thanks again. I’ll drop the blankets back off in the morning.”
“No need, keep them if you want. Solak can always order more.” He smiled over his shoulder and disappeared behind the building.
When the goods are being gotten, her group always shows up for the goods. “This looks good.” Sven said as his hand swooped down for the apple.
His lovely princess reached over to retrieve the carrots then told the boys to watch what could she do with these.
Vilja delighted at seeing the sweet roll dove in for her catch of the day.
Lydia reached over and removed the blankets plus the plate with the bread. “My thane wishes to retire for the night.” She held the flap open as everyone else but Lurren went inside.
Lurren watched the tent flap drop down with her outside. Sounds of laughter and singing could be heard filling the night air as she walked toward the tavern. When the morning arrived, Lurren was sleeping on the bench outside of the tavern. The tavern had been full so Valga didn’t have any extra beds for Lurren to sleep. As the 9th hour rolled in, her eyes flew open as the sounds of some nearby blacksmith shop pounded in her head. Another morning finds her sore, stiff and feeling awful. That increased when she noticed a line of people staring at her with their arms folded.
The one voice she didn’t need to hear first thing in the morning spoke. “Morning, DA13.”
Vilja flung Lurren’s legs off the bench causing her to fall off. “We have been talking to the locals and they have things needing done.”
Lurren leaned on one elbow resting upon the bench and looked at her planning organizer. “That’s great. So why don’t you and your gang go do them.”
Vilja pressed down on the tip of Lurren’s nose, “Are we grumpy today?”
Just as Lurren was about to explain to Vilja the errors of her ways, she noticed something to her left. “What is that?”
“What is what?” Sven asked as he leaned on Nadina’s shoulder.
“That extension to your arm.” Lurren now understood why she was promoted.
“I’m Nadina, a Redguard warrior. My mission in Skyrim is to guard this bard from the Bard’s College.”
Lurren glared at Vilja since she refused to look at Thrynn. “Lydia?”
Lydia stepped forth looking smart in her lop-sided armor but she had a new walk. “How can I assist?”
“Please explain to the happy couple that we cannot continue to bring every relative that Vilja or her extended family has along.” Lurren was getting up when she noticed some fancy sandals standing by Nikolai. “Could you also request the number of new relatives she added as well? Just for reference purposes.”
“My Thane, DA13 has a request. She stated that your extended family could come along as long as you bring all your relatives with you to make you and Thrynn one happy couple.” Lydia, clearly in Lurren’s opinion, gave the message entirely wrong to Vilja.
“You are just the sweetest and best friend anyone could ever have!” Vilja was holding up notes for Lurren to memorize in aiding the townsfolk of Falkreath.
Lurren gave up. She was doing that too easily lately and should remedy that soon. It was early morning when she walked past the growing group and asked a guard where she could find Jarl Siddgeir.
“Yes? What is it that you want?” A young man sitting with very bad posture habits greeted the group. It appeared to him the group was larger than the entire population of Falkreath.
“I believe you sent me a letter.” Lurren responded before anyone else could.
“Ah, yes, it’s you. Well, we will see if what they say is true.” The jarl replied then received confirmation from Lurren’s party that it was true.
“Was there something you needed or was wasting my time on your agenda today?” Lurren tapped her foot when Thrynn stepped forward and flung her back behind the group.
Vilja assumed her thanely duties and apologized then asked how could they help him. “I do apologize for her outburst. She woke up on the wrong side of the bench.”
The jarl didn’t care about any of that, he was enjoying the chaos Princess was causing to his body. She stood leaning on his throne while one long slender finger outlined his ear. One long leg lifted up as she showed off her pretty sandal while wiggling her painted toes.
While the jarl explained his demands to Vilja the door slammed behind them. “Bring me some real mead, none of that local piss but real Black-Briar Mead. Then go kill the bandit leader at Embershard Mine and report back to me.”
Lurren was sitting on the steps, debating on where to go. Obviously, that was not a connection from Indigoblade and she needed to check Markarth. The noise from the forge caused her to look over.
“Need something?” The blacksmith asked his first customer of the day. “Only a hearty soul travels the road these days.”
“In my case, I have lots help with that.” Lurren was inspecting some goods he had out on display.
“I was Dengier’s personal guard for years. I risked my hide more than once to protect him. Why would I do that? For money? Because I swore an oath? No, it was because he was a good man and a true friend. A true Nord places loyalty and honor above all else.” Lod was telling his customer as he hammered on a newly forged sword.
“Let’s not forget the family.” Lurren leaned on one pole looking out at the tiny town from the blacksmith’s shop. She watched Princess sneak into Lod’s home then come back out.
“When you find that dog for me, be sure to bring it back right away.” Lod broke the news to Lurren.
Lurren turned around to face him. “What dog?”
“There’s one on the road. I asked the town guards to look for him.” He was grinding the sword while explaining the details to Lurren. “I can’t afford to chase him down but I could use a fierce, loyal beast to keep me company. Your family said they would help. Gave them half the reward already.”
Lurren heard enough and walked back toward her tent to tear it down. When she got next to the general store, her course changed.
“A hearty morning to you!” Bolund met her at the steps as he was leaving for work. “Sleep well?”
Lurren blushed slightly, “Yes.” No reason to tell him all his sweet efforts went to waste.
“Good to hear. Need help breaking down the tent? I mean unless you plan to leave up. That is okay, too.” Bolund fumbled for his words.
She wasn’t sure she heard correctly, he wanted to help her. Her! “You are probably busy and I can manage.”
“Nonsense. Always time to lend a hand.” Bolund was headed to the back of his store. “Lumber isn’t going anywhere.” He laughed heartily.
She made a mental note to not let him near the rest of evil creatures following her. He was so sweet, such a nice change from everyone else in Skyrim.
“This is a fine tent. Looks to be the Northern Ranger model, top of the line with this kit.” Bolund had Lurren stand back while he tore the tent down. “That book on camping terminology is quite handy. Solak can hardly keep those kits in stock.”
“I have it memorized.” Lurren dug her boot toe into the ground, all girly like.
Bolund smiled over at her, “Well, look at you, if all of Skyrim acted the same way.”
Lurren giggled then growled as she saw trouble coming her way. “Gotta go.” She hustled Bolund with the last details of dismantling the tent then shoved him out of view. “Can we leave now?” She quickly turned to face the enemy.
Vilja stopped and her followers did as well except for Princess. She swayed side-to-side with her hips past the males and stopped between Vilja and Lurren. “DA13, did you want to bring your little friend along? We have voted in favor of it.
That would bump you to DA14.” Princess pinched Lurren’s cheek before her hand was slapped away.
“I have decided to fire Thrynn.” Lurren folded her arms pleased with the snap decision. “You may inform your husband of his status as another soul within the unemployed group. And by my calculations, based upon classes taught by Indigoblade, that would include your entire family.” Lurren’s hand was shooing them away. “Since that is the case, you may go now.”
Vilja was shocked that her best friend would fire Thrynn without any explanation about this unspeakable action. “Just like that? Fired? No reasons why? Lydia!”
Lydia sighed at another burden placed upon her by the thane. “DA13, you cannot simply announce you are firing Thrynn in public. Things like this are delicate matters and should be handled privately. Imagine the shame you bring to this family making his firing an open forum for all to see..”
Lurren rubbed her chin with one finger while thinking how much she hated their traps. Again, she learned that additional firing techniques were in order when dealing with this massive family. “Could you bear with me for a moment?” She began digging through her knapsack and pulled out one notebook, a roll of paper and one charcoal piece. Flipping open her book while glancing at the eyes ogling back at her, she reviewed the firing process. Closing the book with one hand, she replaced it into her knapsack. Walking over to the nearest barrel, she unrolled the paper and wrote something down on it. Without looking at him, speaking to him, she tucked the rolled paper into his arm as she walked by and straight for the path out of town.
Thrynn removed the paper, knowing full well what it said and unrolled it. In large block smeared lettering were the words, “You are fired!”