Tuesday, June 30, 2015

And the River, It Goes On--Part 13

Ludovico scraped his fiddle to the appreciative crowd.  "Singing la la la la--la la la la--la la la la--la la la la!" he declared as he finished up the ancient folk song with a certain saucy defiance that seemed to be inherit to it.  As he finished it up, the crowd applauded in appreciation, and let loose a shower of coins into the pot he'd placed before him.

"Thank you!  Thank you!" he declared.  "You are too kind!"  He smiled, as much to himself as for the crowd.  It'd truly was a magical place, this city of White Pine, from its astonishingly beautiful gate to its sparkling white streets.  It'd been a wise move, to cross the river, and come here.  A wise move indeed.

And the best part is, as of yet, no one had yawned and said they'd heard any of his songs before.

As much of the crowd moved on, a single Ogre remained smiling at him.  "Good sir singer," he said in the heavy accent that Ludovico was becoming used to, "I must say you sing well.  We do not see many Milesians here in White Pine.  A few--but only a few.  And you are the first singer I have seen among them."

"Well, I'm glad I count for more than novelty," said Ludovico.

The Ogre gave a laugh and rubbed his bald head.  "Yes, yes," he noted.  "Tell me... have you come from the city they call the White Mountain?"

"You mean Montalban?" asked Ludovico.  He nodded.  "Indeed."

"Ahh."  The Ogre looked away.  "Did you see the battle then?"

"I fought in it," answered Ludovic.

The Ogre's eyes went wide.  "Ahh.  I am sorry.  I did not..."

"No, no," said Ludovico.  "No problem.  I'm a singer.  I know men hunger for news.  Is there something you wanted to know?"

"Mostly if you were writing a song of it," he declared.  "My people's prince fought in the battle.  Or so I hear."

Ludovico nodded.  "Well, that may be--many people fought in it, and I did not see them all."  He peered at the man.  "What is your prince's name and...?"

"Rodmonte, of the House of Nun," said the Ogre.  "He is the sovereign of Kitvekh, the greatest city there shall ever be."

Ludovico nodded.  "Well, I shall have to see it after I'm done here."

"You would find it very damp," answered the Ogre.  "And also cold."


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