Episode 1 – The Mission
We returned home to Fox Glen on Christmas morning, but before I describe that, I want to tell you why I was away, where I went, and who accompanied me home.
My name is Marlo Thorkle, and I’m the stepson of Arne Twilber and my mom, Nina Thorkle. Based on Elfin oral tradition, I must practice telling the tale of my personal journey, so it can be passed down as part of our family history.
Last year, when I was twelve, Arne became the head of our household and treated us all very well. In February, I turned thirteen and started joining Arne on hunting trips. We became an efficient team and brought home so much meat and fish that I sprouted up, and within months, had passed the five-foot mark like Arne.
Last year, after we left civilization and moved back to the mountains, Arne found us a roomy cave we now call Fox Glen. We piled rocks in the opening and created a respectable doorway, then over the Summer, stuffed all the gaps and cracks with mud and straw, so by Fall it was very cozy. In addition, Arne and I leveled the floor and covered it with animal skins which seemed quite luxurious.
It was all very comfortable, but not very private. Arne and Mom had a little partitioned area of their own, but I was still sleeping with my sisters, Sally and Thimble which became rather awkward, because I grew so fast that my “member,” which Arne told me humans call a dick, had developed a mind of it’s own. Without warning, it would (and still does) become very stiff, and at at night, seemed to stay that way the whole time…at least until I drained it in the morning.
My sudden growth, caused a crisis in our family. Although not old in years, I became physically the size of an adult…although a very skinny one, so following Elf tradition, it was my time to search for a compatible mate. It was rather a frightening thought, because I had no idea where to find other Elves, much less a compatible one, but Mom told me of a place called The Great Tumble where a colony of Elves was rumored to live. She felt my search should begin there.
So, on November first, with only the map Mom had drawn me, I bade a teary farewell, and headed North, keeping an eye out for the landmarks Mom had noted. I tried to be brave, but it seemed so strange to have been scarcely a boy the year before, and was now seeking a wife.
I had no idea what a wife would think of me…until a few month before, the others considered me cute, but after my sudden growth, I defied description, and they said very little. I’d grown thin as a wisp with a thick head of unruly black hair, ghostly white skin and big multi-colored eyes…”owl eyes” as Sally referred to them. Several months before, they had been totally dark, but as I quickly matured, they took on a combination of unusual hues. The only thing that disappointed me was my nose which had hardly grown at all…was hardly more than an undignified bump.
Even as I set out on November first, the snow was heavy in the upper reaches of New York’s Adirondack Mountains, so my spindly legs had to plow though for hours. Mom told me it would take me a day and half to get to the tumble and I was a bit scared. I’d never been alone on a long trek before. What if I were to get lost? What would I do? But then I remembered the map and how Mom had marked the big landmarks…and that, together with confidence in my Elfin powers, calmed me down. I sensed no dangers or catastrophes that could divert me from my vital mission.
Around noon, I made camp under an overhanging rock, and inspected the contents of my pack: dried meat and berries, my canteen, a change of clothing, my marriage instructions…Mom had written out exactly what I was to say and what would be expected of me. I was to recite the Elfin courtship chant, wait for the acceptance chant in return, then bring my fiancee back to Fox Hollow where a nearby home space would be assembled. There our union would be consummated.
It all seemed a little intimidating, but Arne assured me I had the necessary physical endowments for marriage. So, at that moment…as reassurance, I unbuttoned my leather pants and drained myself thoroughly. I had no idea how I compared to other suitors, but Arne seemed to have no concerns and that gave me confidence. As I was shaking the last drops, a voice hailed me. “Ho, stranger! May I approach your camp?” It was startling to hear a voice so far from home, but when I turned, I saw a boy in a hooded parka, who, like me, carried a bow and knife.
“By all means join me,” I said, hoping the stranger and I were heading in the same direction…and could keep each other company
To be continued….Read next episode!