The Tag saga continues with the introduction of a new character, Hasel the Potter
Read Tag…One More Time – Part I Verduan of Nant – Chapter 1.
Read Tag – Part I Verduan of Nant – Chapter 2.
Read Tag – Part I Verduan of Nant – Chapter 3.
Read Tag – Part II Forgeron the Tinker – Chapter 4.
Read Tag – Part II Forgeron the Tinker – Chapter 5.
Read Tag – Part II Forgeron the Tinker – Chapter 6.
Forgeron pulled his cart down a lane. He followed a sweet voice singing until he stood outside a cottage needing thatching. A pile of wood stood to the left of the door, to the right, on a crude bench, pots, plates, and mugs, each beautifully painted, waited to be picked up.
The singing paused and Forgeron called out. “Hello to Hasel the Potter.”
A svelte young woman, her eyes white from cataracts, her sleeves rolled up revealing muscular forearms and her hands reddened with mason’s clay, opened the door. She held a cane in her left hand and reached out with her white. “That’s a new voice. Who calls me?”
“Forgeron, Lady of the Clays. A tinker, a metalworker. Perhaps the wheels of your stone need smoothing? Perhaps an axe for your wood needs sharpening? Your roof’s letting light through. Perhaps rain and soon snow? I can thatch if there’s no metalwork to be done. I – ”
“Enough, Tinker Forgeron. What is your price?”
“A copper for each deed done and something to drink or eat. A silver if there’s no food or drink to be had. Good conversation always brings the price down. A tinker often walks alone. Pleasant talk with a pretty lady is valued highly.”
She moved towards his voice and held her right hand out. “Come here. Let me see you.”
“I want to see your face. With my hands. You can tell a lot from a man’s breath on your palm, the width and straightness of the nose tells you if they’ve lived a life of pain. A cut in the ear, perhaps covered by a hat, tells you they’re someone’s servant run away. The creases of the face tell if the person laughs more than cries, and often why. A strong smile, good health. A weak smile, illness, perhaps someone to keep at a distance. The – ”
“Enough, M’lady. Enough. You see well for one without eyes.”
“Will you let me see your face?”
Forgeron lifted his cart handles. “I’d rather not, M’lady. I bear too many scars. My features would wound your delicate hands.”
She held her cane in both hands, diagonally crossing her body, and planted her feet firmly. She moved her head slightly to let each ear hear the sounds he made. “Then move on, please.”
Forgeron turned his cart back down the lane. “As you wish, M’lady Potter.”
When he reached the corner where the Potter’s lane met Nant’s main road, he stopped to consider his next direction.
Hasel the Potter called out. “Move on, Tinker. Either direction, I don’t care. But don’t tarry here, don’t tarry near me.”
Forgeron turned his cart south and whispered, “Yes, M’lady. Yes.”
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