After lunch, Granny Hester and I ride on Alfred to the closest village. I would have given Alfred a red scarf and gotten myself a matching red armband — but Kuikagel are so round I can’t really find the neck to push the scarf around! So Alfred Jodocus Kuikagel needs to be without his signature red scarf. Instead, I give him a red headband. When our group enters the village we’re greeted by the villagers.
“Good afternoon, Granny! You’re early today. Who this boy?”
“Good afternoon, Katie! This boy is Swift, my new apprentice.”
“Good afternoon! Nice to meet you.”
“Good afternoon. Oh, so Granny has finally decided to take an apprentice! I should be telling Hector about you. Welcome to Eisel Village!”
Excited, she runs away. We continue through the village. Granny Hester tells me to stop at a certain house. We get off. I gently pat Alfred. An elderly man comes out to greet us.
“Good afternoon, Hester! I can see you brought company.”
“Good afternoon, Jake. This boy is my new apprentice.”
“Good afternoon. Please to meet you. My name is Swift.”
“Pleased to meet you. I am Jake, the Elder of Eisal Village.”
The elder looks at Alfred and me and sighs.
“Is something the matter?”
“No, nothing for you to worry about. Hester and I have some boring business to discuss. So why don’t you try to get to know everyone here in the village while these two old people here take care of the boring stuff?”
Granny Hester and the Elder Jake enter the house. Taking the opportunity I walk with Alfred through the village.
Though I can see a lot of pre-schoolers, well at least in my old life, I’d call them pre-schoolers, but there no kids my age in the village. None but one single Hume boy. He has blue and short blond hair and he is one head bigger than me. But judging from that fact he is one head bigger he’s the same age as me. He’s completely excited.
“That’s quite a Kuikagel you got there! Did Granny capture it? By the way, I’m Hector. My mother told me someone close to my age has come to the village. What’s your name?…”
I interrupt him.
“Hello, Hector! I’m Swift. Calm down! You act like you have waited years to find someone your age to get acquainted with.“ I smile. “I have just become Granny’s apprentice yesterday. I’m currently introducing myself to the villagers. And no, I contracted Alfred myself.”
“Sorry. Well, to be honest, there hasn’t been anyone even close my age in this village. So you’re Granny’s apprentice. That means we’ll be meeting often. Once a week, I go to Granny for some tutoring. How old are you?”
I quickly glanced at my public profile.
“I’m twelve. I’m half Chitwer, so I stopped growing one or two years ago. How about you?”
“Oh? I thought you’d be younger. Turns out you’re only close to my age but the same age as me.” Hector is beaming with excitement. “Come, let me introduce you to the other villagers.”
The villagers give Alfred and me a warm welcome. Though I’m the only non-Hume in the village everyone still treats me nicely. I guess being worried about discrimination has been unnecessary. The little kids to seem to want to touch my ears a lot. I don’t mind and let them touch them. When one kid suddenly starts petting them I can’t stop myself from purring. Ahh! That’s so embarrassing! I can feel my head getting red while everyone laughs. Maybe I shouldn’t let others touch them after all. After meeting all the villagers, it’s already the late afternoon. Hector, Alfred and I go back to the Elder’s house. The Elder and Granny Hester are already waiting for us.
“I see the two of you have met. I hope you can be friends. If you’re done for today, we should get going.”
Hector and I look at each other, smiling. Hector answers:
“No need to worry. I’m coming tomorrow for tutoring anyway.”
“Shall I come and fetch you? On Alfred, you’d be there in no time at all.”
“You’d do that?! Please do. See you tomorrow then!” Hector seems excited. I mount Alfred and help Granny up.
“See you tomorrow! Goodbye!”