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Thursday, November 10, 2011

Alex Anderson, Called to Go Forth

Hello Troops,
Today, the all knowing, all wise, venerated, yet embarrassingly humble Alex Anderson announces his mission call.
Thanks Alex for submitting this announcement in true Troubadour style.



Master Alex Goes Forth

"And so, the knights of the Federation of Shires defeated the evil Empire of Romulus, and peace was restored to the land." With quick bow, Master Alex sat himself down, his story told. Before him in the great hall of the castle were his audience, troubadours and peasants alike. The younger members of the troupe applauded, a few whistled. Some of the older, more experienced storytellers nodded their heads in approval, although some of the elements of the story were unorthodox.
For several weeks now, the air has chilled in the shire, but withheld snow. The fields surrounding the castle has long since turned gray and dull by the cold. Trees were bare; leaves had long since lost their satisfying crunch. The morning frost lasted long into the day, chilling everything it touched. The huge pile of coats and scarves by the doors of the castle was evidence of that; few dared to remain outside for long periods of time.
Yet the castle itself held a wealth of warmth and merriment. The general mood of the hall was warm and bright, despite the cold outside. A fire cracked pleasantly in the corner as the occupants of the hall talked loudly to one another. Mistress’ Emily and Brittney resumed their animated talking once the story had been told.
"Master Alex," said Master Ricks, sitting to his right, "Thy story was well-told. Yet, your props could do with some repair. They are fraying with age." A smirk passed over his face.
"Thank you, Master Ricks," Master Alex replied, "But, troth, my concern was not with the props, but with my memory, which in my absence could have left me." Master Alex had been studying at the University in the more populous city for several months, and only now returned to retell his favorite story. "And don’t forget, young prop-maker, that the props that I use were created by my own hands."
"Yes," said Master Ricks, "and only for your hands were they tooled! Others have tried to use them, and fail!" The pair laughed together. This was true. It was also true that, despite only being a part of the troupe for a few short seasons, Master Ricks had become very proficient in the sacred and guarded art of prop-making. His own handiwork could already be seen on the stages of the troupe.
"Master Alex! Master Alex!" came a voice from the crowd.
"Yes, Master Joseph."
"Master Alex, I did truly enjoy your story!"
"Thank you Master Joseph, but as I recall you have helped me tell it before."
"I know, but it did still entrap my attention. When will it be told again?"
There was a pause before he answered.
"I cannot tell this story again, Master Joseph. For I must take my leave of this shire again."
"What?" yelled Master Joseph. Those sitting near craned their heads to see the commotion. "Where are you going?"
At that, Master Alex pulled from beneath the table a small, brown bundle. It was a simple, modest piece of clothing. The robes of a traveling monk.
"My course lies East, toward the rising sun, to a distant land called Pittsburgshire. I leave in less than threescore and ten days."
Silence fell over the crowd. Through the giant windows on the walls of the hall, tiny flakes of snow had begun to fall.
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