Yule Log Hunting

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Yule Log Hunting

So here is a story of the Yule Log Hunt game I set Oak Vale Sept and visitors.

It was Christmas day and we all were with our family or just moping about the Sept and needed cheering up from hearing about dear old Uncle Erecul’s cracker jokes. The challenge was to bring back the biggest fallen or dead wood log on the sept grounds. It could be done as a team or solo at your own choice. I set 6 days for the hunt to end with a party on the 31st and into the new year with the winning log to be the Yule Log for the Sept.

A few of you here entered. Our very own Sept Leader Arbiter of Malice, Grave Tale, Red Fang, Tameka, Peace Maker, Sora, Dafydd, You Sneaky B, LostMoon and even 2 of the visitors at the sept at the time Surfs the Wyrm and Azumi.

All the participants set off hunting at different times to suit their timescale.

Grave Tale went off with his ghostly companion to search the woods around the Sept Territory. Bringing back his haul a little at a time in armsful loads. He had made a significant gathered pile but on his last trip back on what was sure to be his largest log he paused in the flat open space of the old Sept Waystation. The ground left free of new buildings in honour of those that lost their lives in 2016 with the near wipeout attack of the Sept and all its inhabitants. He spent some time there, putting his last load of wood on the floor and talking to the air. The large respectable log he was bringing back now used as a seat, never making it in for counting. He stayed there a few hours from dusk and into the late evening. Something other than wood collecting had got his attention now.

AoM went looking in the deeper undergrowth, shifting to Crinos to lug back his half-fallen tree log. Hefting the wood up on to his tall brown fur shoulder, turning this way and that to dodge the trees still growing so not to damage them. Before getting even halfway back to the Waystation a few little squirrels took it amongst themselves to take a ride on the log while carrying little twigs in their teeth. By the time he had reached the Waystation, he had over 20 joyriding, twig gnawing Squirrels as the tag-along guests. They hopped off his log and scampered around the back and out of sight. An odd sight to be sure as I watched from the porch.

Another pile of wood had started to be seen getting higher but without an obvious reason for who put it there. A mystery you say? Yes until a closer look at the ground and young paw prints were to be seen muddying up area and a few white fur tuffs caught on a branch here or there. This looked like the work of a young family perhaps I hear you say. Would you agree with that guess Ragabash LostMoon of the Silver Fangs? How are your cubs coming along, about 2 years old now right?

Peace Maker and Tameka making steady progress too with their collection of gathered deadwood. Nothing outrageously large to need to turn to Crinos to carry but teamwork can achieve good things when you are grouped with the right partner.

Another squirrel scampers by, this time going away from the waystation and seen clutching a nut in its little paws. This was proven to be one of just many such trips this larger squirrel was to make over the next 6 days.

Next would be Red Fang’s entry. The Wyrmfoe of the Sept having been on many trips for defence and protection he had good knowledge of where larger trees were for cover and fighting vectors and all such fighting things an Ahroun often seem to love to work out. Not wanting to dismantle his blockades and funnelling of attack ground and all that sort of consideration, he brings back another good entry but not the largest.

YSB took to the air for a good aerial view of the territory. He circled high and looked down over the trees below. Looking for what the instincts of the assumed bird say is an unsafe tree limb to perch on. This way he has the high ground where most 2 feet or 4 paws don’t think to look. Not just finding the deadwood but bringing it to the ground in a controlled way rather than waiting for the next heavy winds to knock it down. Once again in human form, he carries the branch back to the waystation. Followed by a trail of ducklings remarkable looking like squirrels carrying twigs.

Daffyd and Sora worked as a team also. Daffyd having more experience of the Sept grounds than Sora was ‘brains’ of the excursion he ‘claimed’ pointing out the most likely areas and even considering the planks that were leftover building materials he had seen me storing in the summer. While Sora was the willing and eager ‘brawn’ to carry the heavy load of wood in practice as in life metaphor… taking blows and worries meant for others.

By now some of the more observant may have noticed that many, nay all of the Waystation Christmas nut bowls were empty. Another mystery you say and I agree. This nut thief or multiple thieves had to be tracked down and brought to task. Tracking down pesky quick little squirrels may sound easy but let me tell you, it isn’t all plain sailing. Just ask Azumi.

The young visiting Cliath we all know and love as that Cinnamon Roll Azumi was having a frantic herding party of her own. Around the back of the waystation, in a corner that she was almost turning into a barricade of defence were the missing nut bowls. Separated out into various nuts and fiercely guarded against thieving squirrels sat Azumi. I say sat, well perhaps not quite. She was accepting a twig of one squirrel while using her foot to keep the larger squirrel from swiping an extra undeserved and unpromised reward from a bowl. If you hear her say, as I have many times now over the last few nights of her stay in Oak Vale, “It’s like herding Squirrels”, then trust me she has the experience. She did have a considerable pile of twigs and kindling though. If the aim was volume over a single largest, then she would have won this game hands down.

The winner then, well that big lumbering brown fur descendant of the Vikings and their boat-building experience came to the front for balancing huge stupidly unwieldy logs on shoulders. Arbiter of Malice was the winner of the ‘largest log’... no smirking now… and Azumi well her twigs and kindle pile was used too, curtsey of those squirrels and her nut exchange promises.

I am,
Naomi O’Mannion, “Ancestral Wisdom”
Athro Talesinger of Oak Vale,
Born of Fianna and Bitten into the Nation.
Oak Vale Sept
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Squirrel with nuts in a trolly

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OOC: Craft 5 Author if you are reading the tale.

Anyone named (not Kinfolk) in the story can claim 1 Honour, Wisdom or Glory at their own choice. Naomi is issuing the story as official Talesinger duties. Thank you to all Proxy St’s and writers that helped create the first report that this story totally used about 80% for most of the details.

Player Email: Josie R
Storyteller: Jayce

Storyteller Email: staff list