The old man sat at his porch and watched the fields. He hummed a simple tune and slowly rocked on his chair. All was calm. All was silent.
"Hmm," the old man furrowed his eyebrows. In the distance, a tiny, childish scream. "That be an annoying mosquito." The noise got louder. Soft thumping erupted in the distance as well.
"Mister look ooouuuuuuuttttt," screamed the mosquito.
The old man sniffed and rubbed a small cloth on his thick spectacles, still humming and rocking on his chair. Not a moment later, a dozen blurry shapes whooshed by in a frenzy of hooves and moos, kicking up a storm of dirt and grass and sweeping away old leaves. Just as fast as they had arrived, they were gone. Another blur runs by.
"I got it!"
The old man watches this blur hop out of vision much slower than the others. Then all is silent once again.
"... ... Whaz that?"
Riddle flopped down onto a stack of hay, his breaths hard and sweat dripping from his face. Pipper wagged his tail and hopped onto Riddle's stomach, much to the boy's agony. The sommel peered around the filled stalls with much pride.
"I hate--" Riddle wheezed, "how you--" another wheeze, "made me run that whole way back--" one more time, "you Egg-Butt--"
"Ahh, look at all my feemocks all tucked in them stalls!" The old man cooed at the closest feemock, rubbing its forehead. "What a good boy, Pipper, git'em good!"
Riddle huffed and patted Pipper's feathery head. Who knew that feemocks would be just as freaked out by sommels as people? "Pipper can herd real well, sir."
"Of course he can, stupid boy," the old man grinned. "Sommels are one of the best herdin' animals out there!" Riddle chuckled and looked back at Pipper.
"Oh, yeh," the old man hobbled over to Riddle, who was still leaning against the hay. He handed the young boy a gift wrapped in a handkerchief. Riddle took it, curiously.
"What's this?" Riddle peeked inside. It looked edible. It smelled even more so.
"It's yer reward for helping me herd my naughty feemocks! I think my shepherd boy called it a loaf cake. N-Now, it might be a little tough, but I promise it ain't more than a few days old."
Riddle beamed, smiling wide at the man. It wasn't a reward he would expect, such as jewels or gold, but he was grateful nonetheless. "Thank you very much, sir!"
"Yeh yeh yeh..." The old man turned, waving a hand. "Now git off my land, if ya don't mind, boy." He turned the corner and left Riddle's sight, mumbling through the steps of kicked-up dirt.
Riddle gently pushed Pipper off his lap. "Well, Pipper, it was a mild pleasure to kind of work with you." He tousled Pipper's head feathers. A long purple tongue flicked at his face in return. With a laugh and an "Eww," Riddle left the stable, closing the door behind him. His triumphant quest was over.
* End of Ch 3 *
* Illustrations will be added in the future. *