Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Day One-Eighty-Eight: Innocent Racism

I made a friend, diary! Like, a new one! And, by the gods, he has different-coloured skin! Like tree bark without the roughness! Fantastic, that.

I was wandering about the castle today, still wondering what I should do for the contest, when I got a hankering for some chocolate. So I abandoned my patrol route (which I'd already done to watch a juggler anyway) and went to the Beefiary to see if Robert had some secreted away. Kingly mandate or not, he's a tricky bastard.

He didn't. Or if he did, he wasn't giving it to me. We fought for a minute, then he slapped a couple vegetables on a tray and told me to stop holding up the lunch line. I walked off in a huff with the tray, 'cause dammit, diary, I just BET he has some chocolate somewhere in his kitchen. Been so long since I had chocolate…

It might've been my desire for chocolate that led me to sit beside a stranger in the Beefiary. By the gods, he looked like he was made of chocolate. And it took me almost a full five minutes of chewing on a carrot and staring at him to figure that out!

He spoke up first. "Pray tell, dear man, why do you stare? / Have I a nettle in mine darksome hair?"

And I was all like 'Oh my lords above, chocolate men speak in rhyme! I wanna live in his delicious country!' in my head. Said something else, though: "No! Nope, not a nettle to be seen. Um, are you made of real chocolate?"

He edged away from me. In retrospect, I understand why. "Made of sinew'd flesh and bone am I, / So moveth now your roving eye." (Hey, that was a triple rhyme! Awesome.)

I held up my hands in apology. "Sorry! Sorry. But… are you sure, though? I mean, like, your skin… it's all… brown… does it still taste good even if you're not chocolate?"

I earned his shudder. "To reveal your ignorance as such, / You must not get out much."

The man explained, in long, awkward poetics that people where he comes from have darker skin. I find that absolutely fascinating, diary, because I've never seen any HUMAN with skin that wasn't pasty. Goblins and orcs are greeny, sure, and I've heard the snake people in the Imperium are a dusty red, but brown me-people? Weeeeeeeird.

Anyway. We kept talking, and after an hour of stumbling over his odd rhymes I learned that his name is Edmund. He's a traveling bard who, after getting separated from a friend, wound up wandering on his own for a long time. He came here with a bunch of other minstrels when he heard about the contest and the prize. (Word travels really quick, I guess.)

Once you get what he's saying, Edmund's a really nice guy. He laughed at my attempts at jokes, gave me a couple pointers, and even shared some food he brought from far outside the country! Not chocolate, but crunchy little cheese things. Good enough for me. Entertainers are friendly folk, is my conclusion. And they have cheese.

That… might not be true of them all. It SHOULD be, 'cause cheese is great, but I guess it's possible not every entertainer LIKES cheese. Though if they're entertaining, they should like cheese, because cheese gives you gas, and farting is funny. Why rob yourself of such an integral comedic device? Why, diary?!

Probably dwelling on this too much.

After a long chat with Edmund I went back to my work, 'cause Captain Cedric caught me sitting down and shoved my face into a bowl of soup. Before I left, though, I told Edmund that I'd see him tomorrow. I need his help coming up with something I can use in this contest. I know he can help me out. That's what he's here for, after all.


Unless he tries to sabotage me to up his chances… could that happen…?


Man, all that spying business last week has made me so paranoid. First with Libby's night-time excursions, and now with a brand new friend. I wanna go back to blindly trusting people. Life was easier back then.


Dragomir the Wary Chum

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