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Les chroniques d'Eolinius

The mektoub who loved flowers (1st part)

It was with a broken and upset face that Eolinius opened his bag and examined all his equipment this morning. He checked the presence of his armor, the weapons available and his food rations, not to mention the many slices of gingerbread stacked in Slavenis leaves to keep them from drying out.

It was still full of bumps and bandages on his face after the marauder's attack on Fairhaven, his first battle with the Black Dragons against a wave of attack on the lakes. He had tasted the dust several times but he defended his honour with his friends and his guild. But that wasn't the thing that upset him the most. After all, for him it was only the exactions of idle individuals who fight because they have nothing else to do.

No, there were much more important things to him. What worried him the most was the strange attitude that Nair'Pom had had recently, and then his sudden disappearance from the Rangers despite Nair'Kyriann's protests. He would have liked to help her, but what could he do? All this didn't mean anything good to him. He had a rationalist mind, he didn't like unexplainable things.

He came out of Fairhaven with a decided step towards the nearest stable. He weighed his purse in bodoc leather, which this time contained a little more Dappers than usual. For several weeks he had been determined to do analyses for the water company, which allowed him to buy a mektoub that would be very useful for his distant explorations. When he arrived in front of the stable, he put his purse on the counter. The groom O'Cauty Eoppie looked at him with a puzzled eye.

"What's my good friend for?"

We were always O'Cauty Eoppie's friend when he saw a purse in front of him. Eolinius pointed the mektoubs in the back shop. O'Cauty Eoppie gave him the parchment where the prices of the different animals were indicated. Eolinus fades. He certainly had Dappers, but at that rate, it was an exaggeration. O'Cauty Eoppie looked at him with an upset look and shook his head.

"These Trykers are all the same. Maybe I should give them with an extra haystack too?.... I have mouths to feed... And the taxes, did you see them?... taxes?... And the competitors of the other stables who only think of sinking me!.... »

Eolinius was starting to have a headache. O'Cauty Eoppie then leaned towards him and looked around the counter to see if others could hear. He addressed him in a low voice with a complicit look.

"I may have something for you. I have a young mektoub here who is not yet fully trained. He may be a little gruff, but I'll leave him with you for half price. »

Eolinius felt the scam, but the groom insisted.

"It comes to me from a travelling merchant Fyros whose female mektoub gave birth here. This one was in a hurry like an izam carrying a letter. As he had not been able to sell all his goods and pay his bill, he left me the young mektoub as a pledge. He left in a hurry because he wanted to marry his goddaughter in the desert. A real crazy story, hihihihi. She met a Zorai who was meditating in the desert on the turpitudes of life. Chased out of his family because of a dark history of debt with his cousin who was in trouble with local authorities, he was wandering on the dunes of Oflovac when a torbak attacked a caravan of mektoubs passing through there...."

(15 minutes later)

"... and his great aunt who was in pain had gone to a Matis rebutter in Yrkanis for treatment. Real charlatans, these are real charlatans. On her way back to her nephews' house, she wanted to catch a jar of capryni butter cream on the shelves and then..."

Eolinius could no longer stand on the counter.

"Stop, it's okay. y take it," says resigned Eolinius.

In less time than necessary to say it, Eolinius found himself with his empty purse and a rope in his hands at the end of which was a strange mektoub, with his eyes globular and without expression staring at him. It was called by the sweet name of Tapioca.

For his first outing with Tapioca, Eolinius chose to stay close to the entrance of the city. He tried to make it work by pulling it at the end of its rope, but Tapioca was reluctant to move forward and Eolinius had to buy a haystack from O'Cauty Eoppie who rubbed his hands. After a while and with patience, Eolinius managed to get him to walk around the stable. But the Mektoub was stubborn and always shot right and left to sniff what was around to him.

At its second exit, Eolinius decided to build it. To his great surprise, Tapioca did not offer too much resistance. However, the step and the seat were not well secured and Eolinius was pitching on his saddle. But hey, maybe he was the descendant of corsairs and that's not what was going to make him seasick. Eolinius wanted to push the walk a little further and as he passed in front of the hill at the exit of FairHaven, the mektoub suddenly slanted to his right to sniff into the thickets again. Surprised by this sudden movement, Eolinus was disconcerted and found his head in the sand of shells, which ended in a tide of insults directed against O'Cauty Eoppie. He had no idea at the time that some time later, Tapioca might save his life....

(to be continued)

[HRP] Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator [/HRP]
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