Cold Hands, Grateful Heart

“Hmm” Libby said, “these herbs might be able to provide aid to the ones who requested it, but this other effect might be problematic.”
This had been a regular occurrence this forum. Spending the evening bells consulting her many notes she had taken to create special brews at the request of the townsfolk of Runeheim. In this instance, her work had extended into that next morning. Measuring, pouring, recording, and comparing until her focus was broken at the realization she was late for Court. With an exasperated sigh she hurriedly put away her materials and proceeded to rush to the meeting room. It wasn’t until she sat down in the back of the room that she noticed her hands were so chilled she could feel her blood pulsing through her veins with each beat of her heart. It wasn’t uncommon for her to lose track of the time when engaged in her work. She moved her fingers to help warm them and distract from their painful stiffness.

Dag – a friend of Knut’s well known for his fighting prowess and seeming inability to speak, but still perfectly able to communicate – was sitting in the chair next to her watching her move and wring her frozen hands with a look of concern on his face.

Libby motioned to Dag to lean his ear close to his face. “There’s nothing to worry about son, my hands are just cold from the frost that has come so suddenly to Runeheim,” she said while massaging her left palm with her fingers. He pulled her hands in-between hers to warm them and audibly gasped at their temperature.
“This happens a lot. I get so deep into my work that I don’t notice my hands are frigid until I can no longer move my fingers,” she whispers guiltily to Dag, “I really should probably take better care of myself these days if I want to keep going into the winter.”

Dag looked at her with mixed emotions of worry, and a little frustration. Libby could sense his care as he tenderly held her weathered hands in his soft warm ones. He looked into her eyes and smiled, pulled her hands closer to him, and tucked them into the folds of his neck, the last few remnants of the chills working their way out of her fingers.

Runeheim can be a strange place to be – Malefic oddities come almost every single night, and the Menjir’s shining runes make many who call this place home nervous of the future. Libby found a community, with friends that she would protect in the same way she protects her grandchildren she brought with her.

She looked back up and met Dag’s eyes, her smile returning his.

Today she was grateful. Grateful for friends.