Story for the Day: To the Haven

To the Haven 
         Teague hastened through the bustling markets to forage for some supplies, and once he had obtained some rations and suitable blankets for travel, he met Mureadh at the front gate only to discover that Mureadh had already taken the trouble of retrieving supplies for both of them. He thanked him and asked if they should not take a carriage, for though it was hardly a transport for two officers of moderate consequence, the conveyance would make the journey shorter and therefore more endurable to his friend, but the offer was declined with a quick shake of the head and an indignant expression. Teague noted Mureadh’s distress and, assuming such discomfort was due to leaving Qwynlin behind him for so long a time, suggested that they begin their journey as soon as was possible to achieve some distance from the capital before nightfall.
                Mureadh made him no answer and began their expedition with downcast eyes. He would not look up until they had gained some power over the long Western Road and he was determined to ignore every other sound beyond the repetitious voice in his mind. He had never hitherto left Qwynlin on her own for more than a few days and here were months together that he would be made to remain distant. It was a situation he could not like, but he must abide it for the time. Worse to him than his absence was that of his friend’s. He had come to acknowledge Teague as a worthy sentinel as capable as himself at defending their joint families, and the notion of both of them being away from their relations was a vexation unconscionable to him.
                An hour passed in this silent contemplation, Teague filled with his woman’s various glories and Mureadh in despondency for leaving her with no guidance.
                Teague could not help but attend Mureadh’s exasperation and thought to relieve him of his worries with a reassurance. “I left her with more than enough for a few days, Mureadh,” he said coolly.
                “That’s not why I’m bothered,” Mureadh muttered without looking at his friend.
                Teague misconstrued Mureadh’s meaning  and scoffed, “Oh? Tell me what else I have done wrong now,” while rolling his eyes.
                “I don’t like that you’ll be away from her for who knows how long.”
                “I’ll be absent from the capital for two days, Mureadh.”
                “And then what?” Mureadh said with more stridency. “His Majesty could chose to deploy you at any time to anywhere for however long.”
                “You’re the one who is going to be gone for a few months,” Teague calmly reminded him.
                 Mureadh sighed, knowing he could not argue this refutation. “I just don’t like her being left alone,” he said, returning to his more amiable tenor.
                “Fionnora and Ennan are there to give her company.”
                “They’re children, Teague.”
                “And you don’t think Qwynlin can take care of them?”
                Mureadh knew very well that she could but would not admit to such an idea, as it would render his services as protector superseded.
                “And what about Sabhine and the rest of your family?” Teague said with a clever smile. “Are only twelve helpless women to you?”
                “My family grew with the Karnwyl community, Teague,” Mureadh huffed, giving his friend a lat look. “They watch over them when I’m not there.”
                “Would you be easier if I were with Qwynlin now?”
                Another affirmative was prompted but none came forth.
                Teague shook his head and simpered at his friend’s obdurate behavior. “I know you’re one of the Royal Guard now, Mureadh, and soon to be the Captain of the Guard, if you can stay at the Haven long enough to finish your mission without running home to check on your sister.”
                Mureadh humphed and pouted, folding his arms and turning away.
                “But Qwynlin is more than able to take care of herself,” Teague impressed with a gesture of his hand. “She owns a business, looks after my brother and sister when they come home from their lessons, and still does everything necessary for the house.” He paused and watched Mureadh’s stubborn character thaw into one of disconsolate recognition. “You know she’s not young anymore, Mureadh.”
                “Doesn’t mean she doesn’t need me,” Mureadh rejoined.
                “No,” Teague said with a warm smile, “It doesn’t.”
                Mureadh felt calmed by his friends dissertation no matter how glaring it might have been to confess the suggestion to himself: his sister was grown and no longer in need of his help. This should have been an idea worthy of his approbation, but his caring person and protective manner would not allow him to think otherwise. He stopped and turned to his friend with a trenchant look. “Your brother and sister many not always be young,” he said gravely, “but they will always be younger than you.”
                The point was made and understood, and though Teague hoped he would be more lenient in his allowances regarding his siblings when the time of their adulthood should come, he must not negate the possibility that he might one day feel the same.


  1. Its hard to see them grow up. A big brother is always a big brother. Nice little vignette.


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