Quest for the Name of Martin
Installment #3: Moving Along in Unexpected Ways (Part 2)
Narrator:Alongside the path, the questors stood randomly, watching the small, fat, mouse. Kenlock was barely controling his anger, and the others barely controling their astonishment.
Narrator:"Now, you see." says the mouse, "I have a proposition. You seem to be in need of a bit of feeding, while I seem to be in need of a few strong beasts to help me out. The way I see it, we can help each other."
Eroket Nightblade:Eroket lets a smile cross his face. "I'd love something to eat..."
Tarran:"Good plan." says Tarran. "I'll eat the food, and the others can do the work."
Weston:Weston steps in front of the thief. "What, precisely, is the nature of this task you need performed?"
Narrator:"I just have a few things which need moving. Simple tasks, really, but I'm not all that strong." the mouse says with a shrug.
Tarran:Tarran shoves his way past Weston. "What, precisely, is the nature of the food you need eaten?"
Kenlock:The otter holds the spear tightly; his fingers rub against the wood. Sweat starts to drip from his forehead.
Akilya Wisebrook:Akilya seems oblivious to the otter's inner struggle, one paw tapping impatiently. "Are you even listening to me?" she demands.
Kenlock:Kenlock breathes hard and stares at the others.
Eroket Nightblade:Eroket smiles at Akilya's discomfort at Kenlock. "Temper, temper...he's probably got a lot on his mind."
Kenlock:He takes a step forward, and then stops.
Akilya Wisebrook:The ottermaid gets right in his face. "What is with you?"
Eroket Nightblade:Eroket keeps his sword sheathed, flexing his longer then average claws
Weston:"A few things?" Weston looks rather puzzled. "How few? What type of things may these be?"
Narrator:"The food...pies, cakes, cremes, all sorts...even a few specialties."
Eroket Nightblade:"What would we have to do for this food, mouse?"
Narrator:"Move things, as I said. Just four or five things. Shouldn't stump strong creatures like yourselves."
Tarran:"On behalf of my fellow party members, I accept your gracio...kind offer." says Tarran.
Eroket Nightblade:Ero replies. "You're helping as well, Tarran."
Weston:Weston looks miffed. "Very well then. Take us to your... 'things'."
Eroket Nightblade:Ero smiles at Akilya. "Keep a reign on that venomous toungue of yours..."
Tarran:"And," grins Tarran "Take me to your food."
Eroket Nightblade:"I don't trust this, Weston...I'd like to know the 'things' beforehand."
Narrator:"Aha. good, if you would all follow me, we can get my things moved, and you all filled up!"
Narrator:The mouse waddles into the bushes, beyond which is a small, concealed path.
Weston:Weston follows the mouse.
Cirofleta:Ciro sighs frustratedly at the creatures as she follows the mouse.
Tarran:Tarran follows Weston, licking his lips.
Feverfew:And Feverfew follow Tarran, ever anxious to please.
Fiora:All of a sudden, a hedgehog falls out of the bushes.
Fiora:"Wot's this?" she asks.
Eroket Nightblade:Ero raises one claw instantly. "Who are you?"
Weston:Weston bites his lower lip as a hedgehog spine jabs into his arm. "Mmfffff..."
Tarran:"A hedgehog, of course." says Tarran, laughing at his own, non-funny joke.
Fiora:"I -- I -- I'm Fiora," says the hedgehog, watching the claw.
Narrator:A good distance along the path, the mouse stops. "Aha...here should be the first one...somewhere here. Aha!" He smiles and kicks a bush. There is a loud metallic ringing sound. "My stove is half-burried there, and I need it moved...to my house, which is not too far."
Eroket Nightblade:"Alright...and what are you doing here? Spying on us?"
Weston:Weston's pain expresses itself in his vehement desire to punch something. Tarran seems to present an excellent target.
Cirofleta:Ciro taps her footpaw at the ermine. "Arguing with another newcomer? Honestly...."
Weston:The squirrel avoids punching the mouse by only a narrow margin.
Eroket Nightblade:"I'm not arguing, Ciro...just questioning."
Fiora:"No, sir, not spying, simply looking for some berries..." she replies nervously.
Narrator:The mouse is surprised at the arrival of the hedgehog. "Hello, there."
Tarran:"What kind of berries?" asks Tarran, suspiciously.
Feverfew:"You're not the only one! We were just on our way to lunch!"
Narrator:"Muffin?" he holds out a blueberry muffin in his paw.
Eroket Nightblade:The ermine lowers his claw. "Alright."
Cirofleta:Ciro, good nature clouded, follows the other beasts instead.
Weston:Weston glowers at the ermine. "Methinks, sir Eroket, that thou should attempt the cultivation of some patience. And possibly trust."
Fiora:"Muffin! Yes!" The hedgehog grabs the muffin.
Narrator:"Glad you like it. Now, if everyone is aquainted, perhaps we could get to moving my stove? I can't bake a good pie without it..."
Eroket Nightblade:Ero smiles. "Trust...has nearly gotten me slain in the past. Were she hostile I'd have slain her. As she is not I will not harm her."
Weston:Weston un-clenches his fists. "Hmph. Sir mouse, where is this stove?"
Narrator:"In the bushes." he says, kicking the one again. Once more, the metallic ring comes. "Just past that"
Feverfew:"And how far do we need to move it? I'm not very strong, you know."
Kenlock:Kenlock backs up a bit suprised.
Kenlock:The otter then grabs the spear with both hands and his decision seems solved.
Akilya Wisebrook:"Well?" she says, glaring at Kenlock while ignoring Eroket. "Are you even going to say anything?"
Kenlock:"You... scum. What is with me, is none of your concern." He says slowly.
Eroket Nightblade:"Hold your toungue before you lose it, Akilya." He replies to Kenlock. "I suggest ingoring her."
Kenlock:The otter pulls the spear back, ready for the strike, and his face is that of one feeling much pain.
Cirofleta:Ciro returns. "Will you three just be quiet and stop arguing?" she snaps at the three.
Kenlock:He suddenly drops the spear, and it clatters on the ground.
Kenlock:Kenlock slowly sits down and lets out a long sigh.
Kenlock:While staring into space, the otter's expression turns into that of grief.
Kenlock:Kenlock picks up his spear and stands up. "I... am sorry." He says to no one in particular.
Eroket Nightblade:"For what, Kenlock?"
Eroket Nightblade:Ero looks to ring. "What was that?"
Narrator:"A stove. Dear goodness, you all need to clean out your ears."
Narrator:"Supposed to get deaf when you're old, not when you're young"
Eroket Nightblade:"Just wanted to know what I was hearing."
Weston:Weston bends over and grips one corner of the stove. "Could somebeasts... hnf... aid me in my... hrg... endeavour?"
Eroket Nightblade:The ermine grabs the other part of the stove. "Sure."
Tarran:"I heard you the first time, me ole matey." says Tarran. "Now they'd better get to work moving the thing."
Fiora:By now, the poor hedgehog is thoroughly confused. "Why are you moving a stove?" she asks.
Eroket Nightblade:"Where...are...we moving...it?"
Feverfew:Feverfew hops over and tries to help. "UNF! This is heavy!" She pulls back her paw. "And still a little warm..."
Narrator:"Because I need it in my house, to bake pies. And these kind travelers need pies."
Kenlock:"Huh..?" Kenlock looks over at the struggling beasts with the stove. "Should I help?"
Weston:"Grrrrrrph... Feverfew, would you do me the favor of... nnnnnnngh... forcing that insolent brat Tarran to... Ouch... help?"
Tarran:"They're probably moving it 'cos it's not in the right place." says Tarran, sagaciously.
Eroket Nightblade:"grr,,,where do we set it down..."
Feverfew:"Why is it here, silly?" The hedgehog maid pokes Tarran with a spike.
Kenlock:The otter walks over and takes part of the stove.
Narrator:"The lad does show promise in the critical thinking...aha, I see you've got it...somewhat. Follow me." The mouse waddles off along the path again.
Eroket Nightblade:The ermine walks slowly, straining under the weight
Fiora:The hedgehog watches in amusement as the group attempts the move the stove. After a couple of minutes, she starts poking around, looking for more berries.
Kenlock:Taking a good bit of the weight, the otters walks ahead leading the stove after the mouse.
Tarran:"Ow!" yells Tarran. "What was that for?" Tarran grumbles and places his paws on the stove, giving the appearance that he's helping.
Weston:Weston staggers after. "I could be... sitting under a tree at home... with my wife. But instead... I am transporting a lead brick.... around a forest... for no visible reason... whatsoever."
Akilya Wisebrook:The ottermaid watches with increasing amusement as the stove-lifters struggle with the heavy object.
Narrator:Soon, the group comes upon a house upon a cliff. "Here we go, now if we can just get it into my kitchen, that would be great."
Eroket Nightblade:"You aren't making this easier, Weston...who is your wife?"
Feverfew:Feverfew runs aroud the group to open the little door.
Tarran:Tarran soon becomes bored with pretending to move the stove, and wanders over to help Fiora hunt for berries.
Weston:Weston's eyes bug out. "I am not... complaining. I merely wish to ascertain how... this-thrice-accursed stove... got out there in the first place."
Narrator:"Thieves. Thieves and bandits are horrid creatures."
Fiora:Fiora greets the mouse with a wave, and pops a berry into her mouth.
Eroket Nightblade:"No clue...who's your wife?"
Kenlock:"You won't survive long in the real world complaining... Unless you are one who enjoys the whip." Kenlock says under his breath.
Eroket Nightblade:Ero recalls some of his past at this and inwardly shudders.
Feverfew:"They tried to take your stove?" Feverfews eyesgrow wide that anyone would do such a thing.
Weston:"I have the pleasure to be married to the Lady Ari. As for your comment, sir otter... I have already survived an encounter with a whip. A red-hot dagger, also, figured into my past."
Narrator:"Yes. Rather nasty bunch, they were."
Akilya Wisebrook:She eyes the mouse. "What foolish thief would go through all the trouble to heave something that heavy through the woods and then leave it in the middle of nowhere?"
Eroket Nightblade:"A smart one, perhaps, Akilya."
Narrator:"They didn't leave it, they dropped it on account of dying."
Kenlock:"Perhaps it was because of all the complaining." The otter smirks.
Feverfew:"Yeek! The stove killed 'em?"
Tarran:"Probably took it 'cos they thought it would look good with their decor." Tarran whispers to the hedgehog. He then pops a berry of his own into his mouth.
Narrator:"No, no, little lass. Some right minded neighbors caught them on their evil ways."
Eroket Nightblade:His voice turns to angry, snarl. "I...dinnae, see ye 'elping us!"
Weston:Weston nods to Eroket and starts to lower his side of the stove.
Eroket Nightblade:The ermine lowers the side
Kenlock:Kenlock slowly lowers his side as well.
Fiora:The hedgehog laughs at Tarran's comment and throws a berry at Weston.
Weston:Weston drops the stove squarely on his foot as a berry splatters across the back of his head. His mouth opens soundlessly for a moment.
Eroket Nightblade:Ero winces. "That must hurt..."
Kenlock:The otter stares at Weston's condition and stifles a laugh.
Akilya Wisebrook:The corner of Akilya's mouth twitches in withheld laughter.
Weston:"Graaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhh!" The squirrel gives the stove a mighty shove, slamming it over onto its side.
Fiora:Fiora's eyes open wide. That berry did more than she expected. To avoid being blamed for what happened, she curls into a ball of spikes and pretends to be a bush.
Eroket Nightblade:He smirks,finding the squirrel's pain hilarious
Tarran:After hearing the clang(and crunch, as well as the yell which followed it) Tarran decides that now would be a good time to hide behind the hedgehog/bush.
Weston:Weston's eyes bulge out and, forgetting his manners and his nominal position as leader, he fires a hard right hook into Eroket's stomach.
Eroket Nightblade:The ermine snarls in surprise, flinching, the fist slamming into his hip
Eroket Nightblade:"What was that for?!"
Feverfew:Feverfew winces at the clang-kerrunch-GRAH-punch.
Weston:"Do not.." the squirrel hisses from between clenched teeth, "Ever mock my pain, unless you care to share it."
Akilya Wisebrook:The ottermaid decides that now would be a good time to back away before Weston notices the barely-controlled smirk on her own face.
Eroket Nightblade:"I wasn't mocking...but if you want pain..."
Eroket Nightblade:"And if you didn't notice, the charming otter brat was nearly laughing.
Akilya Wisebrook:She glares at the stoat, smirk gone now. "I was not!"
Akilya Wisebrook:"Filthy lying vermin..."
Eroket Nightblade:"The corners of your motuh were flicked up in something generally called a smile."
Kenlock:"Now, mousey, What's our reward?" Kenlocks says while drumming his fingers on the side of his spear.
Narrator:"Reward? For just the stove? I could bake you a pie, but I still need some other things moved."
Kenlock:The otter raises an eyebrow. "We have been doing this for just food...?"
Feverfew:"Food! shouts Feverfew, breaking into a dibbun dance. "Wait, there's more?" She gulps. "Is it all this dangerous?"
Weston:Weston's normally less-than-attractive face is twisted into a downright hideous snarl. "If they are that weight, Tarran can carry them."
Narrator:"Oh, no, the rest are better, I think...just a few tools."
Fiora:"Food! Berries?" The hedghog uncurls and looks around hopefully.
Eroket Nightblade:"You're the vermin, witch!"
Eroket Nightblade:"You want to see vermin? Care for me to show you?!"
Tarran:Tarran decides that hiding is still the safest option to avoid work, so he motions for Fiora to get down.
Narrator:"Care to have a honey sugar ball? Anyone?" the mouse says, resorting to his usual anger-quenching ways.
Eroket Nightblade:"Or have you not read about exquisite agony."
Akilya Wisebrook:"Oh, and what are you going to do, blade-for-brains?" she snaps back, ears pinned against her head. "Attack me? Torture me? More vermin than you pretend, aren't you?"
Akilya Wisebrook:"Can't even keep a rein on your temper?"
Eroket Nightblade:"If you wish I can do that and more."
Kenlock:"Listen, mouse! Food is worthless! If you want to see another sunrise then hand over any valuable you may have." Kenlocks says angrily.
Weston:Weston's voice explodes into a furious roar. "BE SILENT, ALL OF YOU!"
Fiora:Fiora curls back into a ball, for her and Tarran's sake.
Tarran:"It's getting loud in there." whispers Tarran.
Kenlock:The otter glances over his shoulder and stares at Weston.
Narrator:"Right. The other things are kinda out back."
Weston:The squirrel's voice sinks to a low growl. "The abbess put me in command of this party, but so far the only one who has shown any sense is the blasted dibbun!"
Feverfew:Feverfew quails at the sound of Weston's voice.
Weston:"That is enough! I have had quite enough of all your foolish ways!" He marches out of the hut, snarling.
Narrator:"Follow me around back? for the other stuff?"
Narrator:The mouse, distressed, pops a small honey sugar ball into the mouth of anyone who talks.
Eroket Nightblade:The ermine's handsome countenance contorts in rage as he hisses. "Care to start something, brat? I'll be glad to finish."
Fiora:Fiora starts to roll into a real bush, trying to hide from the squirrel's anger.
Feverfew:The youngest of the group escapes out the back door, looking around for stray tools.
Eroket Nightblade:Ero's eyes widen in anger as the ball enters his mouth, he manages to control himself on the mouse's behalf
Kenlock:Kenlock grins. "Someone is ticked... hehe."
Akilya Wisebrook:Her glare never wavers from the ermine. "Now look what you've done. Threaten and snarl, yell and thre--erk!" The ball pops into her mouth and she chews furiously, wanting to finish her tirade.
Kenlock:The otter starts to follow the mouse to the back.
Tarran:Tarran lays very still in the bushes, pretending to be a rock, and hoping to avoid Weston's wrath.
Kenlock:"Err.. mouse, sorry... I won't kill you, and food would probably be best anyways. This group of fools are loosing their heads because of lack of it."
Narrator:Going out back, the pudgy mouse cook gestures to the assorted tools, and the large wood desk. "I just need these moved inside."
Feverfew:Feverfew picks up a spatula and a pawful of spoons before heading back inside.
Weston:Weston, limping somewhat but no longer snarling, moves around to meet up with Feverfew; he feels bound to make sure that she, at least, gets back to Redwall safely.
Kenlock:The otter goes about the task without questions. He is used to obeying orders and knows when not to speak.
Tarran:Tarran carefully prods Fiora. "You can unroll now - he's gone."
Fiora:Fiora catiously pokes her nose out and makes sure that what Tarran told her was true.
Feverfew:Having deposited the tools on the floor of the kitchen, she begins dusting off the spoons on her tunic.
Weston:Weston re-enters the house. "Miss Feverfew? Would you care to head back to the abbey, or press on, or shall you be staying with these?" Scorn is apparent in the squirrel's final word.
Feverfew:Feverfew's lip quivers in fear of being scolded. "I w-want to keep g-going, sir, if you please."
Weston:Weston bows, and his voice is soft when he speaks again. "As you wish." The squirrel forces a smile. "Shall we go?"
Feverfew:She stands up and dusts off her apron, smiling back weakly. "Yessir."
Narrator:The mouse, seeing everything moved back, goes into the kitchen and begins to bake.
Feverfew:"Mister Weston, you're still limping!"
Kenlock:Kenlock claps the dust off his hands and glances at the others.
Eroket Nightblade:"Me? Alright, Akilya...care to fight here and now? I'll show you the difference between some story and real life!"
Eroket Nightblade:"Well, brat?"
Eroket Nightblade:Ero waits for her reply.
Eroket Nightblade:Ero snarls. "I'll be pleased to grant you anguish and pain if you wish it..."
Eroket Nightblade:"But it may not be physical...we'll see how your precious readings help you then!"
Akilya Wisebrook:She rolls her eyes. "Who would be so foolish as to want pain?"
Eroket Nightblade:"You seem to want it badly as how you act."
Eroket Nightblade:"Do you know nothing of evil or pain?"
Weston:The squirrel grins. It's twisted, but it's still a grin. "I shall survive. Are you ready to move on, or would you prefer to stay and eat?"
Kenlock:"Where is that fool Weston...?" The otter says to himself.
Feverfew:"Stop," she orders, "and I'll fix it right up!" She digs in her medicine bag.
Kenlock:Kenlock finally locates the squirrel, and approaches him.
Fiora:Fiora uncurls completely and wanders into the kitchen, looking for a muffin.
Kenlock:"How long do we plan to stay here?"
Akilya Wisebrook:Akilya eyes Eroket with a raised brow. "If you say so." With a shrug that can be seen as nothing but dismissive she turns away. "I'm going to reconcile with Weston." With that, she heads out.
Eroket Nightblade:The ermine exits
Tarran:Tarran follows Fiora, looking for anything sweet.
Weston:Weston sits down and shucks the boot on his right foot, then flexes his toes gingerly.
Kenlock:"How long Weston??"
Eroket Nightblade:The ermine enters the kitchen and walks up to him
Eroket Nightblade:"Weston...sorry about earlier."
Eroket Nightblade:"Any ways to make amends?" The ermine inwardly flinches at his own words.
Kenlock:"Ergh... Fool, we should get moving as soon as the mouse gives us the food!"
Weston:Weston looks up at the ermine. "What is it you seek? My pardon? I shall give it freely. My respect? That, I think, you have lost."
Eroket Nightblade:"I care not for respect, Weston."
Eroket Nightblade:"What need of it do I have? I lost it for myself long ago."
Eroket Nightblade:The ermine's amber eyes remain cold no matter his attitude as if trying to contain something.
Feverfew:finishes working on Weston's foot, but doesn't look up at Eroket. She seems to be getting paranoid of the non-Redwallers in the group.
Kenlock:Kenlock clinches his fists. "Stupid goodbeasts..." He walks to the other side of the kitchen and leans against the wall.
Fiora:Trying to avoid being stepped on, Fiora curls into a ball and rolls into a corner, rolling over a foot as she does so.
Tarran:Tarran looks up from a cupboard full of various sugars and other high-energy foods. "I say kill the vermin."
Scuzbo:"YOOOWW!! watch where you're rolling!!" kicks Fiora
Fiora:"EEP!" Fiora curls into an even tighter ball and stops completely.
Weston:Weston tries to struggle to his feet. "Do not be so insolent as to kick a stranger and a maid, you..."
Scuzbo:"oh, sorry, it's just reflexes"
Eroket Nightblade:Eroket replies evenly. "If you are indeed our leader then lead."
Eroket Nightblade:"Keep some authority, Weston."
Eroket Nightblade:The ermine follows Weston's example. "The term is cur I believe" He glares at Scuzbo
Kenlock:"I'm suprised this group of fools hasn't already completely killed themselves..." Kenlock says to himself in the corner. "They no so little about how to survive."
Eroket Nightblade:The ermine hears the otters cmment and smiles to himself. "I know more then you may think, otter." He hisses, barely audible
Feverfew:Feverfew flinches at Scuzbo's yell, stands up with a tiny curtsy to Eroket and Weston, and exits the mouse's home again.
Kenlock:The otter steps up and walks to the arguers. "Here's an important rule: If you want to survive for very long, then you must not make enemies with your companions!"
Akilya Wisebrook:The ottermaid eyes the entire group and decides to save her apology for later. If ever. She heads outside to be out of the chaos, snagging a morsel of food as she goes, intent on settling down somewhere quiet with ink and quill.
Feverfew:She pokes her head back inside the door, anxious to do anything but sit around.
Fiora:Fiora sticks her tongue out at Scuzbo for kicking her.
Tarran:Tarran, not feeling the need to end up injured/dead, follows Feverfew out of the house.
Scuzbo:Scuzbo makes a dirty face at Fiora
Weston:Weston stumps out the doorway, wearing only one boot and carrying the other. "Come, miss Feverfew. Are you coming, madame?" The last remark is addressed to the hedgehog Scuzbo kicked.
Eroket Nightblade:The ermine replies. "Agreed...we'd best not fight among ourselves....Tarran...would you refrain from attacking me?"
Kenlock:The otter watches with amusement as everyone leaves.
Eroket Nightblade:The ermine exits, looking for Akilya. "Akilya...I have something civil to say to you."
Narrator:From out of the kitchen, the mouse steps warily, baked goods perching perilously on his hands, arms, and head. "Food, anyone?"
Scuzbo:Scuzbo hurries out the door not wanting to be last to leave
Akilya Wisebrook:She stops as everyone pours out the door behind her and tosses her paws in the air. "I came out here to get away from all of you!"
Fiora:"Yes sir, I am!" Fiora gladly follows Weston out of the house, but not before sticking her tongue out again at Scuzbo.
Feverfew:"I'm here," calls Feverfew, waiting for the others and noticing Fiora for the first time. "'Lo there! I'm Feverfew."
Eroket Nightblade:"I came to apologize."
Akilya Wisebrook:The ottermaid eyes Eroket warily. "You. Apologizing. Really now."
Kenlock:The otter grabs a few pastries and biscuits and shoves all but one scone into his pack.
Eroket Nightblade:"Yes...I ask your pardon for earlier and wish no more animosity between us."
Kenlock:"So, will we be off then?"
Narrator:"I've also got some travel bags here, if you want them...some biscuits, and cordails, for your trip."
Eroket Nightblade:"Thank you, mouse.
Tarran:"But I didn't get to eat." Tarran whines.
Fiora:"Hello!" Fiora yells this to the hedgehog that she just noticed was there.
Feverfew:"I hope so," comments Feverfew to Kenlock. "and soon, if we're lucky..."
Eroket Nightblade:"I'll give you some of my share, Tarran."
Kenlock:"We thank you for your help sir." Kenlock says as he takes a travel bag and a bottle of cordial.
Akilya Wisebrook:Seconds tick by in silence as pride wars with sensibility, and finally with an irritable shrug Akilya nods. "Very well. And I suppose I should apologize too. I was less than polite to you, after all."
Narrator:"Good luck!" calls the mouse.
Scuzbo:"Come on! Let's go!!"
Eroket Nightblade:"No problem...I deserved it. No more fighting then?" He holds out a paw
Kenlock:Kenlock turns and sets off, not looking back to see if the others follow or not.
Feverfew:"Thank you! Farewell, Sir!" Replies Feverfew, heading out witht he others.
Akilya Wisebrook:She eyes the paw distrustfully but takes it in a firm pawshake. "Very well."
Narrator:The questors thus continued their journey - restocked with food, and in better companionship.