If you’re going to be sticking around it’s probably a good idea if you know more about all of us.
I used to live in the forests of Gryffin Peak. I loved it there—I flew with the Sparrow men, learned the mortal ways from the Druids, and had a nice cozy tree home. Faery wasn’t too bad, but no one there really seemed to like me. I thought it was because I was half mortal and my mother gave me away, but I think it’s really because my father is the Fairy King and everyone was afraid to be my friend. Anyway, I decided to leave to find my mother and see what my other family was like—even though my father wasn’t too happy with the idea. I ended up getting in a tavern fight and going to jail on my first night, but I met some really fascinating people and left with them on a Zeppelin. I had never flown without using my wings before and I don’t think I really like it. I like being able to float on the wind, I like being able to see where I’m going without being so easily distracted by where I left. I watched my home disappear, and that was sad.
While we were on the Zeppelin some faeries played a trick on me and stuck my arrow in a guy who touched me, so I was arrested again. It looked like I shot him in the head, but I didn’t do it, and anyway he wasn’t really dead so it was all okay. That’s when I first started talking to Gregor, since he’s a paladin he had to interrogate me and find out if I killed the not-dead man. He didn’t put me in irons, he could have and it would have really hurt, but he didn’t.
Gregor seems like he is really grumpy all the time until you get to know him, but actually he’s only sorta grumpy most of the time. Gregor is a Paladin of the Repentor, which I guess is really important because everywhere we go people make sure to mention it, but honestly I’m not sure what the big deal is. Gregor is such a good leader, he is so smart and kind to me, and I’m glad he isn’t in his sword anymore because I felt so lost while he was gone. He and ‘Shen take really good care of us.
They’re kind of like our mom and dad. Well, mine anyway, since I never knew my mom and my real dad sold me like…well, like a pack mule I guess.
I was very happy to still have ‘Shen while Gregor was gone. She is so clever and super nice, plus she’s an Ent! She has a baby who isn’t really her baby, but it lives in her any way. I’m not sure exactly what brought ‘Shen out here, but she’s the reason I was arrested the first time. I saw the men attack her at the tavern and try to light her on fire, so I went to help. Ents are so interesting, and it didn’t seem fair the way they were ganging up on her and her friends. ‘Shen is a really good listener, so if you ever feel sad you should go see her. She does what she can to keep us all safe, but I think she has trouble with Ragnar on that sometimes.
Ragnar was there for that tavern fight, too. I don’t think he really cared who was attacking who, it just looked like a good fight. Mostly he spends his time drinking, rutting, hitting things, and smelling bad. He is a very good fighter, and he’s in charge of all the reavers so he must be a good leader…but sometimes I think it would almost be unfair to play tricks on him. Too easy.
Erwin isn’t like Ragnar, he prefers to get other things to do the hitting for him. He’s pretty good at making curious things, like this one time he filled a giant dead lizard full of air so we could breathe underwater. Actually, the first time I met Erwin he was a lizard with a parrot. But while we were in the jungle (we were in the jungle for a while, and I accidentally let a raptor lose in fairy because it attacked us, and apparently my father isn’t happy about that one—whoops) lizard Erwin went away and cat Erwin joined us instead.
Allan joined us later, too. He’s changed his skin a few times even though he’s mortal—it’s just a shame he didn’t keep the bark one, I thought that was really neat. He came to help ‘Shen, for some reason or another, and he’s really good at shooting things and setting up camp, which is great when we can’t find a tavern. Well…he said he came to help ‘Shen, and had a letter and everything, but lately he’s been talking about his orders as a ranger. Honestly, he had a really bad dream recently and I think it did something to his head. He always seemed so straight forward about everything, but now I’m not so sure.It does seem like a few of us aren’t always what we seem, like Jay. Jay used to be an elf, but really was a demon the whole time. I think he was supposed to be a trap for me, but he saved us all instead, so we kept him. Also I love him and I didn’t want to leave him behind to get killed by all those other demons. I was really mad at him at first, but I guess it really isn’t his fault, he was just used like me. I miss his beard sometimes, but at least his scales are pretty. I’m glad he can still fly with me.
So that’s us. I’ll be taking care of you, and I’ll do my best even though I’ve never had a mule before. I used to have a bat, but he died when a giant set me on fire. Then I had some gargoyles, but I forgot them in space because Jay was not-really kidnapped and I was distracted. I’m sure they’ll be okay, though, there were lots of things for them to perch on and some shiny things to collect and horde.
I’ll do better with you, but it may be a good idea for you to watch out for yourself, too. If you think you’re in really bad danger, try to buck off our stuff and run away. We would be very happy if you came back, but I understand if you wouldn’t want to. Or you could kick at anyone that isn’t us. Can mules learn how to tell non-mules apart? What kinds of tricks do mules normally do? Woden used to play fetch with me, I miss that sometimes. Maybe the next time we stop for camp you and I can try out some new games.
At least you’ll have the two horses to keep you company; Princess Nutmeg and Major General Moo seem like sweet enough warhorses. I think so anyway, I’ve never met a warhorse before. I’ve met kelpies, and I’ve been on the Hunt a time or two, but I’ve never met mortal warhorses. They do look very dashing with their manes all braided up. Wasn’t ‘Shen so sweet to buy them ribbons?
Well, okay, maybe his name isn’t really Major General Moo, but Allan hasn’t said what his name is yet, and I didn’t want him to feel left out and nameless. Plus he looks like a cow—but a very important and dignified cow. So that’s what I’m going to call him for now.
Welcome to the family, Jolly Jack.