Story for the day: Qwynlin
Here is a little more about Mureadh's sister Qwynlin.
Teague had no doubt of Mureadh’s sisters being the most uncorrupted and unexceptionable of creatures but he wondered if they would be as demure and reserved if not living in so sacred a community. There was nothing written in the Good Book on the nature of piety for those who did not wish to serve the Gods as a Brother or Sister. It had only mentioned a few meager phrases on the subjects of matrimony and bearing copious amounts of children to emulate the fruitfulness of the gods, articles that were hardly consequential in Teague’s superior estimation.
It is every brother’s fear to see his sister in an unfavourable situation with a man of disagreeable reputation but to Mureadh, it was even more reprehensible to see one of his sisters being courted when he was not around to supervise the selected man’s behavior. He was aware he could not defend their disciplined activities forever but he would endeavor with every measure of piety and forbearance his siblings would allow. Few of them had ever brought a marriageable home to meet Mureadh and usually when the woodsman met such a man, he would do so with one hand extended in cordiality and another around the grip of his axe handle. Men of weak constitution and tremulous characters never remained in company for long regardless of the friendliness abound in the Farhayden home, but Teague with his resourceful approach and spryness of foot should he ever need to run from a certain angry woodsman could be a more formidable match for his sisters.
Though they moved from the conversation of courting siblings, their exchange continued for some time long after both Mureadh and Teague had finished their drinking for the evening. They spoke until the early hours of many things but the subject most concerning was Nerri. They worried for her while they were to spend their day away from keep. They held aspirations that she was spending time with her sister or perhaps with her clan mates if they would allow her to renter their camp after her intended desertion. They maintained a small hope that she was with Captain Connors. Although neither of them had spoken of their approval in her choice, they agreed that there was no man more deserving of her attentions than the good captain. He was an excellent example of steadfastness and resilience, and emblem of Frewyn, a hero of Westren, and they wished with every power attainable that she would speak of her attachment.
As Teague and Mureadh spoke of their wishes that Nerri should be with Connors for the holiday meal, the conversation paused when Qwynlin began to stir. She Crawled out from beneath her woolen blanket, took her apron from the rack, and sat before the fire with her whittling tools and a fresh wooden block. She began working in the wavering glow of the fires. The amber cinders browsed her cheeks and her hands blurred with velocity as she began to create another one of her figures.
Teague surmised that it was early morning by this time but it was not early enough for a sunrise. He shifted toward Mureadh and leaned to speak with him in a whisper as he watched her. “Nightmares?” he asked.
“Sometimes, but not for Qwynlin. Mostly for my younger sisters,” Mureadh replied in a murmur.
“Is she always awake at this time?”
Mureadh glanced over at his sister who had her back turned toward him and then he glanced at Teague with a severe expression. “Qwynlin has always been very nervous and she has difficulty sleeping through the night. When she was little, I suggested something like whittling to help her calm her nerves and hopefully expend her energy. She took to it better than I thought and she uses as an outlet whenever she feels anxious.”
“Which seems to be a good deal of the time,” Teague quietly observed.
“I’ve asked her a few times if she would like to do something else, but she says she enjoys making toys more than anything.” Mureadh regarded the wooden shavings begin to pile at his sister’s feet and he smiled her diligence. “My younger sisters enjoy her talents because she makes them toys while they’re sleeping. Whenever we were in Church together on Gods’ Day, she would have difficulty sitting and listening to the sermon.”
“I don’t blame her,” Teague muttered.
“I know some sermons can be unexciting so I would allow her to bring her work during the services if she remained quiet, but the Reverend Mother found the sound of the whittling knife and the pile of shavings disturbing. She asked her to stop.” Mureadh’s gazed turned toward the table and he sighed. “Qwynlin doesn’t go to Church anymore. She stays in the house making toys all day and gives them to Sabhine to sell in town,” he said, pointing to his eldest sister sleeping beside Teague’s siblings. “I worry for her lately. It isn’t good for a young woman to be trapped in a house with no interaction from others besides her siblings.”
“Maybe you should let her be a thief. That would get her out of the house.”
“Or I could not,” Mureadh said, raising his brow.
“Her fingers are nimble enough.”
Mureadh clenched his teeth. “It’s not a question of ability, Teague.”
Teague was about to assert that dexterity in a woman was an excellent and highly valued quality when he realized that Mureadh would probably fail to see the humour in such a statement and left it aside. “Well, she lives in Karnwyl, Mureadh. When the town’s population climbs above twenty, then you can encourage her to speak to others.”
“She has difficulty speaking to people whether in Karnwyl or not. Sometimes I would take her to Sethshire when I had some work in the summer there but she finds it difficult to take interest in anything and anyone who doesn’t take interest in her first.
“She spoke to me just fine,” Teague shrugged. “I guess I’m just that interesting.”
Mureadh smiled and shook his head but though he treated Teague’s comment with a trivializing fleer, he must agree that Teague was right. She had spoken to him and for longer than he had seen her speak to anyone other than her siblings. “I know what she wants to say often comes out wrong,” he said with an apologetic accent. “I do what I can to advise her and persuade her to have more practice during the day in the markets with Sabhine but it’s hard for her.”
“Maybe she just likes being by herself and the thought of impressing others make her nervous.”
“Maybe, but it’s not good for her to be so quiet and alone all the time.”
“Why don’t you move her to the capital then? I’ll make certain she’s well taken care of.”
Teague’s suggestive smirk and wicked laughter earned a flat and threatening look from Mureadh, but the more the woodsman considered the suggestion, the more the proposal made sense. He wondered if the noise and bustle of the capital would be a detriment to her already agitated nerves and thought of her coming to the kingdom’s capital where she knew no one other than himself. Perhaps he could persuade one of his other sisters to join her. He knew there was attachment for the Karnwyl community and the house his parents left to them but surely one of the elder sisters would come to help Qwynlin find her place in society. With his compensation he received from his service in the armed forces, he could well pay for a small apartment in town, and if Qwynlin would not live there, perhaps it could be used as a visitor’s quarters and all of his sisters could be persuaded to frequent the capital at differing times of the year.
The notion of having his large family so near to him intermittently was pleasing to Mureadh and he resolved to speak to Qwynlin on the subject before breakfast.
The intimate discussion Mureadh was planning would not be as necessary as he believed it ought. While Qwynlin hands were busy with the wooden block, her ears had been busy with the discourse at the table and though the fire was at the opposing end of the room, she was blessed with the feminine gift of good hearing, and when paired with the talent of eavesdropping, Qwynlin had the advantage of hearing every word her brother had said. Her heart leapt with glorious excitement at the prospect of being removed to the capital. Though leaving the chief of her sisters behind would be terrifying at first, it was her expectation that the wonderment awaiting her life in Diras would be a worthy if only temporary trade.