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A Vow of Silence Part 3

by Arenborne on Nov 20, 2016 at 05:15 PM}
The long ride took Arenborn north along the Anduin, following the mighty river to the capitol city of Minas Tirith. He stayed a few days, mostly residing in the taverns. He avoided the Knights of the city. They were everything he had ever wanted to be. They looked so tall and proud, Arenborn just couldn’t handle being near them. Drinking didn’t solve his problems, but they helped him forget.

From Minas Tirith, Arenborn’s journey took him through to Rohan. He entered the country through Beaconwatch, where he was questioned by the riders there. Apparently, his lack of voice amused them. This opinion was not shared by Arenborn who ended up in a fight with one of them at the tavern. The Thane granted him permission to travel on throughout Rohan, stating that it was his own man’s fault for instigating the brawl. Arenborn left the next morning, wanting to leave the town. The further Aren travelled, the more he preferred the wilderness to towns and cities. Less people, meant less chance of being mocked or trying and failing to get his message across. He still went into the towns, however he mostly just visited the tavern and stayed there for the night before restocking his supplies in the morning and leaving.

Arenborn eventually crossed the Isen, making his way north through Dunland. He had some issues with members of the Dragon Clan, though when he charged down those blocking his path they left him alone. His journey took him up through the ancient ruins of Eregion, at which he stared incredulously. On reaching the East-West road in the Trollshaws, he turned West, riding towards the sunset and his future home, Bree.

He rested in Ost Guruth and the Forsaken Inn, though only briefly, finding both places eerie and disliked the feel of them. The Forsaken Inn especially, filled with brigands and ruffians, was no fit place for a squire of noble birth.

Riding past a hidden town that he would one day call home, Arenborn eventually reaches Bree-town. The hill rising above the landscape ahead of him. It was surrounded by a hedge. Of all things, it was surrounded by a hedge. No wall, no parapets, no defensive siege engines. What was this town to exist so peacefully, with no look to its defence? Any enemy with even an ounce of sense would just set the hedge alight.

Aren walked Tarphal and his pack horse up to the gate, jumping down when he reached the guards. He tried to gesture to them something but whatever he tried to say didn’t work. Possibly because you couldn’t gesture that you wanted entry to find the uncle you’ve never met. The guards found one of their number who could read, and got Arenborn to write out why he needed entry to the town. Though none of them knew the Koltens, one had heard of them, and suggested Aren look for his uncle in the Prancing Pony Inn. As Aren walked away leading his two horses, he thought he heard the men laughing.

Entering the tavern, Aren made his way over to Barliman, gesturing for a drink. After some trial and error, the portly man fills up the mute a cider. Arenborn gazes around the room, looking for someone who looks like they might be related to him but has no luck.

“You lookin’ fer someone lad?” Comes Barliman’s voice. Looking around at him, Aren nods. “Want to write down who so I can help?” The barkeep passes over a piece of parchment along with a quill and pot of ink as Aren nods a second time. Jotting down his uncle’s name, Aren passes it back. “Oh I know of ‘im, can’t say where you’d find ‘im though. Try asking around.”

So Aren spends the night in the tavern, going to bed somewhat off balance before heading out into the town the next day. He asked about, trying to find someone who knew his uncle and his whereabouts. It was hard. Many couldn’t read, and of those who could few knew the Koltens. One however suggested he look for those wearing the sigil of the Bloody Dawn, a local sell sword company.

Aren had yet to meet him, yet already felt disdain to the man. A sell sword and a drunk from all accounts.

A few days of poor luck, Arenborn eventually strikes lucky. A man was in the Prancing Pony having a drink, when Arenborn saw the badge pinned to his chest. The rising sun of the Bloody Dawn. Aren walks over, poking it and trying to get his message across. The mercenary seemed suspicious, and rightly so, but at that moment, and man with striking resemblance to Logan Kolten walked into the inn, making his way over to speak to his comrade with Aren.

Aren stares at the man, hoping it’s him. When he introduces himself Aren lets out a sigh of relief, and passes across the letter from his father. Blince looks at him with confusion, before breaking the seal and reading through the letter. His face would get more confused as he reads the letter, looking up at Aren to inspect him. “Guess you do look like yer old man after all.”

Aren then met two of his cousins, Ardyth and Morrinth. The two young women seemed sulky at first, though this may have been caused by Arenborn’s sour demeanour.

Aren spent little time with his new family. He didn’t like mercenaries. They fought with no cause, only coin. They weren’t true soldiers. His mood gradually turned more and more sour as time went on. He spent more and more time in the Pony, and it soon got to the point that he could just point at specific barrels and get the drink he needed.

It was during this time, that Arenborn met Tosie. The redhead was a mute, and had been from birth but had no idea why. She dealt with everything so well, so efficiently, she had had a lifetime of no voice, Aren had had but six months of loneliness.

She was everything Aren wanted to be. She was comfortable with her muteness, she got on with life, and didn’t let it affect her. Aren only got angry, frustrated, and drunk. Particularly bad days would end with him silently sobbing himself to sleep in his room or punching the wall. She always carried a book and pencil with her so she could write messages when needed, so Arenborn decided to copy her, getting himself a small journal to write and draw in.

He was coping, but he was far from happy.
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