Trembling… From the Cold? Or Cowardice?

This winter was bitterly cold. Clemens still shivering as he sat down at his study. A window had blown open from the cold winds forcing themselves inside his humble abode. He gave the pane a slight shove and made sure the flimsy hinge was secure. He was growing quite tired of winter’s chilling touches on his cheeks.

Wrapping himself in a blanket to warm up gave him time to ponder recent events. Most notably Stein. That man never failed to get under Clemens nerves. Mostly because the man wielded words of criticism like a master swordsman. Efficient, deadly to the ego, and unwaveringly correct.

Clemens had been doing what he could to leverage his knowledge to aid his friends in Runeheim, but clearly he needed to be doing more. Ask more questions, get to the heart of the matter, confront threats to the academic integrity of Runeheim… That last point made Clemens shiver. That entity made of pages troubled Clemens deeply, but what exactly did he do about it? He didn’t release it, so why should he have done anything? Wasn’t it Quill’s fault that thing went on a rampage stealing away knowledge from books and people?

Excuses. Clemens should have taken far more offense at that thing’s greed. Knowledge is meant to be shared and enrichen the lives of all; not hoarded like piles of coins or jewels. Clemens felt a fire rising in him; a twinge of anger and frustration. He was starting to become sickened by his own lack of willpower and courage.

“What would have Hakon done? He’d probably tear the thing to shreds with his bare hands if he could! Ha ha!”

Suddenly the window shuttered, a sudden gust of icy wind forcing it open again. Clemens yelped in surprise, then laughed.

“I guess I still have a long way to go before I can be as bold and fearless as my friends” he remarked, standing up to secure the window again, this time with just a bit more gusto. Then he sat at his study again, and returned to the archaeology report he was working on and noticed his handwriting seemed ever slightly more stable… As if his hands were shaking just a little bit less. Perhaps a sign that spring would return to Runeheim just a bit sooner.

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