“You see that you do then.” The Sergeant turned on his heel to follow his warriors, before pausing to add over his shoulder, “I don’t like young Elfins where they’re not supposed to be, when I’m in charge!”
Clogfryn relit Nomis’ torch and handed it to him with an air of relief on his face, which he covered very quickly with a stern look.
“Now then, Master Nomis, would you mind explaining the real reason for you happening to be here at this time of night, creeping about like a thieving spy?”
Clogfryn, Deputy-Head Stonemason of the Elfin Colony, had always had a soft spot for Nomis ever since, as a youngster, he had come to pester him working. He had watched over Nomis throughout the years, making sure he grew up with all the finer values of the Elfins, encouraging him to become solidly dependable, trustworthy, polite and practical. He ensured that Nomis tempered these attributes with a strong sense of fairness and compassion towards his fellow Elfins, by setting a good example himself. Everyone had a profound respect for Clogfryn’s good common sense and perception of justice, especially, since these particular qualities were considered to be the foundation stones of Elfin culture. Even with these traits, everyone knew better than to fall on the wrong side of the intimidating Clogfryn. Nomis, being no exception, answered carefully.
“I … er … fell asleep whilst watching the moon.”
A smile hovered around the corners of Clogfryn’s mouth.
Nomis went on lamely, “I know it sounds a bit improbable but it’s about as near to the truth as I can say.”
Nomis felt that he was more likely to be believed saying that, as opposed to the whole, much more improbable event that seemed more like a dream to him now. What if it all had been a dream anyway? Nomis wondered silently. “I did have a really fantastic dream, though!” he finished a bit roguishly.
Clogfryn’s face broke, and he let out his deep, rich laugh. “I’m sure it was not about any Lesser Spotted Hawkwing Orchid either, was it?”