Gerig and the Kingdom of Dwarfs

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3. Taking Shelter

     Despite the dwarf's weight, Gerig had little trouble carrying the dwarf back to his house. He let the dwarf use his mother's old bed, and did what he could to tend to the poor man's broken ankle. He even killed an extra chicken to make sure there was enough food for the both of them that night. He boiled the chickens up with a variety of vegetables in a large pot for them both to eat that night. It wasn't until halfway through their warm meal that his guest finally said something.

     "Thank you," Marrec said with a smile as he took a sip of the warm broth that the chicken had boiled in.

     "For the food?" Gerig assumed.

     "That, and for the fact that you haven't told anyone about me." the dwarf answered, "The last time a dwarf was captured, he was sold off to one of the kingdoms to be shown in freak show to amuse children and monarchs. When he managed to finally escape, he was never the same after that. Now he sits in a pub and says nothing. As I hung there in your net, I was afraid that I would suffer the same fate; in captivity, far away from my wife and kids."

     "How many kids do you have?" Gerig asked.

     "Five of them and each one is as good looking as their mother. I didn't know if I was ever going to see them again." Marrec said as he began to chew on a chicken leg. He looked down at his leg. "I still don't know if I will."

     "Well you don't have to worry about me. I live alone and the only time someone visits is to collect the crop at the end of the season." Gerig said as he sipped away at his hot broth. "But the longer you do stay here, the greater your chances of being discovered increases."

     "I can't walk. What options do I have?" the dwarf asked.

     "You actually have two options." Gerig replied, "You can stay here with me and take your chances, or you can let me carry you back to wherever you came from. That way I can just drop you off and be on my way back here."

     Marrec paused for a second and pondered over the choices he had been offered. "I can show you the way to my home, but if you know where our village was, my people would be afraid to let you leave. They can't take the chance of you telling anyone else where we live. If you were to take me home, there is a chance you'd never be allowed to come back."

     It was now Gerig's turn to ponder over a few options. He had a good home, but there was no one to share it with. The town never really liked him and Gerig knew that if he disappeared the next day, no one would really miss him. He also felt responsible for the dwarf and wanted to make sure he was taken care of.

     "I'm willing to take that risk." Gerig informed the little man, "But we'll have to wait a month before we depart."

     "Any particular reason why?" the dwarf asked.

     "The crop." Gerig answered. "The harvest is next month. If the monarch discovers that I have left my crops unattended, they will hunt me down and toss me into the dungeon. If I finish my crop, after the monarch has taken its share no one will come back until after the winter."

     "In other words," Marrec said, as he was cluing in. "No one will realize you've disappeared until next spring."

     "Exactly." Gerig agreed. "By then we will be long gone."

      "A risky plan, since I have to stay here a month." Marrec replied, "But I like your thinking. This course of action has the greatest chance of success."

     "That will give us our best chance to make the trek successfully." Gerig said, "Autumn is also the best season to make this walk as it's too hot right now to carry the cart myself. Right now the best thing for your ankle is rest. So stay out of sight and rest up and I'll tend to my chores."

     "I can't thank you enough for your trouble." Marrec said as he wiped his furry chin with his sleeve, "I won't forget it.

     "Don't worry about it." Gerig said as he tossed the little guy a blanket, "Try to relax and get some sleep."


PJ Lowry

#310 in Fantasy
#50 in Epic fantasy
#83 in Romantic fantasy

Story about: fantasy, dwarfs, long journey

Edited: 15.07.2019

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