The first casualty

Dear pa ma Maggie Pete and Michael

I hope everything is well at home. How was the harvest? How are the cows pigs and horses? I am terribly sorry that I left without saying good bye. I know I should not have done that and I should have written you earlier. I and my friends are in the stolen lands. The major has given us a charter to take the land and to kill bandits and monsters. We even founded a kingdom. My friends made me the warden. I travel around the land and find criminals and monsters that kill farmers and other people. I hope that I can visit you soon. I have lots to tell you.

In the last few weeks many things have happened. We traveled south from our town lakefort. It was really cold and during the night three groups of wolves attacked us. One of them was really big and made the air ice cold. Derrick Valeria one of my friends almost froze to death in his saddle when the wolves attacked. But we killed them all and saved Derrick before he died. Next to our town there is a lake that was frozen. On the lake we met an old man. He asked us to kill a large turtle that was in his favorite fishing hole. We went there and didn’t see the turtle. Devon found a cave next to the river. He and Derrick and Lyrice went inside the cave which was very small. They found the turtle and tried to kill it but it had a very thick shell. I tried to attack it too but I couldn’t get near it because Devon was standing in the way. The turtle bit him several times and he was bleeding a lot. Then I could get next to the turtle and I tried to kill it using the stroke that pa taught me two summers ago. But I missed because of the shell. I tried several times and then I hit it. Devon and Derrick also hit it. Venrickagorn also came to help with his pet Petitschka. It looks very strange. It has purple hair and a large mouth but it seems to like him. He is a strange gnome but he is very nice to me. After we killed the turtle we found several eggs that we kept warm. Maybe we will have little turtles soon. We took the head of the turtle back to the old man and he gave us a gold ring. Devon was very excited about it.

We walked around for several days. One night I was standing guard and I saw a big cat coming to our tents. I tried to make sounds that would make it my friend but it didn’t listen. I am much better now with making animals my friend. Do you remember how I tried to make our old cow Hilde my friend and it hit me with its butt? The cat suddenly jumped on me and Derrick was screaming in his tent. I used my dagger to get the cat off me. Devon helped me and killed the cat. I ran to the tent and there was an old man stabbing Derrick in the face. Lyrice was taking care of his wounds he is very good with wounds but the crazy old man stabbed him again and again. I was sure that Derrick was dead. Venrickagorn called a hyena that attacked the old man. He always calls all kinds of animals and other things that fight for him. I don’t think he knows how to fight himself. Petitschka hit him too. I also hit him with my greatsword this time using the overhand swing that Peter showed me but he was still standing. Lyrice hit him with his sword and killed him. The others told me that he was the brother of Bakken, the potion maker in our town. I don’t know why he tried to kill Derrick.

We went into the forest and found a nixie and 9 loggers. The nixie looked like a small girl with green skin and silver eyes. I think she normally lives in the water. The loggers had cut down some of the trees and the nixie was upset with them because they had cut down her tree too. Venrickagorn was very upset with the loggers and threatened to kill them if they did not leave the forest alone. Devon and Derrick were nicer to them and paid them 100 gold to go somewhere else.

The nixie asked us to help plant new trees and to get magic seedlings from one of her friends. We agreed and went to see her friend a dryad. She agreed to help us and the nixie if we helped her to kill an evil tree that was walking around and killing all the dryads in the forest. We agreed and looked for it. It was huge! It was almost as tall as the old oak tree in front of the house but it was walking around and waving its branches with large thorns trying to hit us. The dryad had told us that arrows would not work against the tree and so I ran towards it to swing at it with my greatsword. It hit me twice. Venrickagorn later told me that I hit it really good with my sword but I don’t remember it because the tree killed me. Because I was dead I don’t know what happened to the tree. I think my friends killed it somehow. They took me back to the dryad and she called another dryad who asked my friends to swear a holy oath that they would protect the forest. Then she did something to me and I woke up. I don’t really understand what she did but I look different now. I am much taller than before. I have blond hair and a long blond beard. Do you remember the northerners from Ulfen that came through Sweetwater three summers ago? I look like one of them now. But don’t worry I’m still your son sam.

I miss you all a lot. But I have learned a lot since leaving home. I’m really good with my sword now. I am also much better with my bow. I have learned a lot about the forest and animals and nature. A couple of weeks ago I found another friend. Maya is a large black wolf. She follows me everywhere I go. I even teached her to do some things like attack someone and sit guard. But I don’t think she will like Petitschka because she looks strange not like other animals. I will write again soon.

love your son sam


jtspalding holgerkern

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