the care and feeding of frosty

Carmichael Settlement
Western Archenland

You stand in a clearing nestled close to the mountains and surrounded by
thick brush and tangle. Scattered around the clearing in the shade of the
mountain are several stone houses with carefully-thatched roofs. They
are a fair size, though most consist of only one room, but they look snug
and dry. Most are lit brightly as their occupants go about their daily
routines, but some are dark and look like they might have been abandoned.

Lanisen makes his way through the settlement, cloak wrapped tightly around him. He seems to be having some difficulty with the slick, snow-packed path, and once he nearly falls one too many times, he carefully steps off the path and starts walking through the snow instead.

Harmonia is rolling an roundish oddly shaped ball made of snow around her yard.

Lanisen picks his way toward one house in particular and knocks on the front door. There is no answer, so he waits a bit and knocks again. At last, he sighs and turns away. He pauses to watch Harmonia’s project.

Harmonia steps back to look at it a moment, before trying to round it off.

Lanisen seems to come to some decision and cuts across the path toward Harmonia’s house, limping. “How’s it goin’?” he asks.

Harmonia begins pack snow together again in a much smaller one again. She turns. “Hey, Mr Lanisen.”

Lanisen offers her an open grin. “Hey,” he answers, and nods toward her round snow-boulder. “You got a good start, looks like.”

Harmonia asks, “Thank. I’m doin’ it, right?”

Lanisen says, “Looks like it! I ain’t an expert, exactly.”

Harmonia says, “I can roll it all right, but I don’t know how I’m gonna get this one atop t’other.”

Lanisen says, “You just gotta stop before it gets so big you can’t pick it up is all.”

Harmonia says, “Paw told me a story last night. He said one time he and his sister made one so huge and it ripped up the grass and leaves and all.” She starts molding it and shaping it adding more snow to it. “And he had to lift it cause she weren’t strong ‘nough. An’ it was the hugest they’d ever made.”

Lanisen says, “Huh! Tore up the grass and leaves too?”

Harmonia nods. “Yep. That’s what he said. ‘Cept they were only dead leaves that had fallen already.”
Harmonia starts rolling her snowball around, trying to make it bigger.

Lanisen says, “Oh! That makes more sense.”

Harmonia says, “Um.. not the grass though.”
Harmonia giggles.

Lanisen scratches his head. “No,” he agrees. “I reckon dead grass don’t fall too far.”

Harmonia giggles.

Lanisen asks, “You gonna be able to lift that?”

Harmonia glances down at her snowmound that she has been rolling. She tries to lift it, but it’s just a little too heavy.
Harmonia hmphs.

Lanisen hmms. “Try taking some off?” he suggests.

Harmonia says, “Don’t suppose you can help?””

Lanisen takes a breath, eying the boulder. He opens his mouth, then shrugs and half-smiles. “Nothin’ ventured, nothin’ gained,” he says to himself, then heads toward the snow-boulder. He braces himself, bends his knees, wraps his left arm around the boulder, and /heaves/.

Harmonia puts her small arms out to help in any way she can.

Lanisen staggers and goes a little white. He sets the boulder back down, careful not to damage it or Harmonia. “Sorry,” he says. He straightens and takes a deep breath, rubbing his right shoulder. “Let’s see.”

Harmonia tilts her her head inquiringly. Though what she says is not probably what she is wondering. “We got take some off?

Lanisen says, “Ahh– yeah, that’s prob’ly best. Take some off so we can lift it, then put it back on once it’s up where it’s s’posed to be.”

Harmonia nods, and sets to work pounding at her snow boulder, she looks back up at Lanisen again, but then continues on her snow boulder. When she’s finally finished knocking off a considerable amount she looks up at Lanisen. “That good?””

Lanisen says, “Might be! Try picking it up.”

Harmonia reaches down and picks up the snow boulder…it’s a might heavy still and she staggers under the weight as she makes her way to the snow man.

Lanisen says encouragingly, “You’re doin’ good! Keep at it, good work!”

Harmonia makes her way to the snowman and finally sets the snow boulder down, panting. “Got…to.. make tha… next one…smaller.”

Lanisen says, “Well, the next one’s the head, and it’s last, so it can be real little if you want.”

Harmonia says, “Okay ”
Harmonia bends down and makes a smaller head from the compacted snow, rolling it only a little. This one she is able to hold much better.

Lanisen asks, “Has your mum got an old carrot you can use for the nose?”

Harmonia ohs. “You put a face on them now?”

Lanisen glances at her and pauses. “If you /want/ to,” he amends. “I mean, I’m pretty sure there’s no wrong way to build a snowman.”

Harmonia tilts her head one way then the other looking at the blank snowman. Before deciding. “Be right back!” she calls running into the house and returning just a short while later

Lanisen mms agreeably. He heads toward a large oak tree and begins to kick around in the light snow beneath it, hunting for something.

Harmonia returns, from her house, carrot in hand.

Lanisen unearths a stick, holds it up critically, then continues looking.

Harmonia wanders over. “Whatcha looking for?”

Lanisen says, “Arms.” He drags out a stick from under the snow and eyes it. “Oh, here we go.” He snaps off about a foot and hands it to Harmonia. “Whatcha think?”

Harmonia nods and grins gratefully, taking the stick in her other hand. She wanders back over to her snow man, jamming the carrot in hard enough to give anyone living a concussion.

Lanisen, after a few more minutes of rooting, unearths another stick that looks promising. “How’s this?”

Harmonia nods happily. “Thanks mister.”

Lanisen surveys the snowman. “Lookin’ real good,” he pronounces.

A man comes to the door, opening it and calling Harmonia’s name. He nods to Lanisen.

Harmonia glances up on see her paw and sticks the two sticks into the snowman’s sides for arms. “Coming, Paw.”

Lanisen raises his hand to Harmonia’s father. “Hey,” he says to Harmonia. “I know where there’s some good pebbles for eyes. I’ll bring you a handful tomorrow so you can pick some, yeah?”

Harmonia nods excitedly “Okay.” She waves. “Goodbye, Mister Lanisen! See ya tommorrow!”

Lanisen waves back, grinning. He eyes the snowman again, then turns and limps back down the path.


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