WIPpetology: the scientific study of the WIPpet in its natural environment. It should be a thing. We can make it a thing. But I can’t right now because I’ve expended my daily allotment of genius of coming up with the word ‘WIPpetology’. So yeah, onto the main event. I’m being super nice today and giving you 28 lines based on the WIPpet math that 18 + 9 = 27 and the extra line is a bonus one.
To set the scene, Tasyn has been convinced by Tekmal (who you may remember from the whole accidently-but-sort-of-deliberate arrow incident) to speak before an assembly of people in the pub one night. This is when he’s mingling before the speech.
He struggled against the tide, peering over the heads of his well-wishers to find Rea. She still stood in the shadow of the doorway, hesitant.
‘Rea!’ he called, fighting his way back to her, ‘Stop hiding, stop hiding, if only for tonight.’ Jovially, he dragged her forward, ‘A drink for the lady!’ he bellowed across the room.
The silence that followed was desolate, broken only by the sounds of sobbing as Aemi escaped through a back door.
Tasyn faltered, searching the face of those around him. Distrust, suspicion and hatred contorted their features as the silence dragged on.
Eventually, Tekmal’s voice shattered the eerie quiet, ‘You heard him, fetch Rea a drink!’
Reluctantly, a mug was shoved roughly at Rea, who barely managed to grab hold of it before it spilled down her dress. With the tension broken, conversation slowly began to return.
‘I’m sorry,’ Tasyn told Rea gently, studiously ignoring the interest of those around him, ‘I don’t know why they…well…’
‘I’m used to it,’ Rea assured him, ‘I don’t belong here. I’ll go home now.’ She turned towards the door.
‘No. Stay. Show them that you are not afraid of their petty judgements,’ Rea looked doubtful, ‘Please.’ He begged.
‘Fine,’ Rea agreed, ‘I’ll go get us another drink,’ she smiled, ‘There’s a glob of something that looks mysteriously like spit in mine and that one your holding is at least third hand.’
Tasyn screwed up his nose and passed the half empty mug to Rea, ‘Thanks.’
He returned her smile as she went to look for some more of the valley’s finest honey mead.
Feeling a tap on his shoulder, Tasyn spun around and found himself face to face with a weathered farmer.
‘The name’s Grenthem, m’lord.’ The farmer said by way of introduction.
‘Please, Grenthem, call me Tasyn,’ he insisted, uncomfortable with the honorific.’
‘Well then, Tasyn, don’t matter what I call you but round these parts we call her,’ he nodded in Rea’s direction, ‘trouble. And best if you remember it.’