This is my rough draft completely unedited. For a full explanation go to Part I.

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Today – Part XIV – Rough Draft

“Yeah, I guess I will.” Kael headed back to his pile of leather. He had been collecting scraps of buyara hide from other commissions they had completed. These piece were too small to make anything else of consequence. The only reason Robik hadn’t ridded himself of them is because the hide of a buyer was beyond valuable. They were considered a spiritual animal. If you were caught killing a buyara, well let’s just say you don’t want to get caught with that on your head.

It is not however frowned upon to keep a buyara as a pet. Once a buyara has passed on naturally the flesh that was left behind is good for the taking. The meat is seldom used, a buyara that died of old age is tough and not worth eating. The hide and the bones are used. The hide fetches a very pretty price.

Buyara were large mammals standing at well over 9 foot tall. They had powerful hind legs that could take them over the tops of trees. They were mostly gentle creatures that had no real predators because of their massive size.

Usually if you can afford to have a buyara as a pet you would take the hide and commission something nice for yourself to remember the pet by.

Robik is one of the most trusted leather workers in the surrounding islands. This reputation meant that he and Kael had the opportunity to work with buyara hide quite often. It also meant that Kael met people from quite some distance away. They rode in from miles away.

Kael being the inquisitive type always asked these travelers about where they came from. They would always fill his head with stories of far off islands, with wonderful creatures and interesting tribes of people. Thus his materials and his pack idea came from the distant buyara owners.

Kael and Robik worked in silence only the sounds of their tools mixed with a grunt or two. Kael had already planned his template for his pack and had the pieces cut to the right size. The only thing left for him to do today was to piece everything together.

Marking the leather, pushing his awl through, and threading the leather together was not difficult for Kael anymore. The only thing he had to be careful of was not stabbing his hand with the awl, which he hadn’t done in quite some time.

This was busy work and it left his mind free to roam as it would. He thought of the adventures he could have with this pack, the people he would meet. Most importantly he thought of the woman he would find. Kael from a young age had been very aware of finding the woman that he would spend his forever with.

The island that he was born and raised on though had very few choices. It was a larger island, if you didn’t like to walk too much you may not see the edges of land where it dropped off into a foggy nothingness.

No one knew what was below the islands. People had flown down there only to never come back or came back with nothing to say but more fog. The fog is what made it dangerous. They said the deeper you went the thicker it got until finally it was a good as night down there.

This seemed odd to Kael, surely there was something down there. Otherwise when the sun dropped below the horizon shouldn’t we be able to see it’s bright light coming through the fog, even just a little.

It was a mystery that plagued everyone, although most went about their lives not really worrying about it. It didn’t hurt their way of life so let’s just move on.

The island was mostly for cattle. They raised a small breed that were known for their very tender meat. They were not very hardy and that’s why they did good on Numa island.

Kael had never thought life to be hard here. The weather stayed temperate all year long. The summer you would get a little hot, and the winter would bring frost on the ground in the mornings. Overall though it was very similar day after day. The grass was almost always green and the sun almost always shined.

“Do you have a plan for that pack?” Kael rammed the awl right into his forefinger. He yipped and through the awl on the ground. Holding his hand he directed a glare at Robik.

“Give me some warning before you…” his words trailed off.

“Oh, you want me to let you know when I am about to say something. Maybe we should get a bell or something in here. I can ring it then you nod your head if it is decent for me to talk, or ignore me if not.” Robik was fighting keeping a smile from his face.

Kael didn’t appreciate the joke but nonetheless he was fighting a grin popping up on his face as well.

Looking back at his pack he saw that he was almost completed. He also saw his awl was laying on the ground. He immediately regretted the rashness he had shown. Hurrying over to it he picked it up and inspected it to make sure nothing was damaged. It was still in good condition. He was worried he might’ve chipped the wood handle or bent it somehow.

Returning the awl to the bench he looked out the window to see the sun was past it’s zenith. Kael supposed he had work right through lunch.

“So?” Robik asked.

Kael looked over to see him working on a saddle.

“So what?” Kael asked genuinely confused.

“What’s the pack for?” Robik gentle guided.

“Oh, yeah that. Well, it’s for an adventure I suppose.” Kael responded nonchalantly.

“Did you get a commissions, I don’t know about.”

“No just thought when I go off on my adventure I would need a good pack, so I made one out of the scraps. Just making sure we don’t waste anything.”
“Very thoughtful of you.” Robik was concentrating on the work in front of him. Kael figured that was the end of that and began to the door to get some lunch.

“Now about this adventure,” Robik started back up again. “When do you think you will start that?”

“I don’t know, I supposes someday when the time is right.”

“Where do you want to go?” Robik prodded Kael further. To be fair kael wasn’t being very forthcoming about it. He didn’t want to hide anything from his dad, but nor did he think he would get his dad’s support. He had been leather working with him for many years, and assumed to take over the shop eventually.

“Well the first place I want to start is over at Goya.”
“The turtle farm?” Robik nodded his head in seeming approval. “That’s seems a good a place as any.”

“Yeah, well I’m going to need a way to travel if I want to see the rest of the islands.” Kael was getting excited now just talking about it.

“The rest of the islands?” Robik didn’t seem surprised, but he continued. “No one has seen all of the islands.”

“Well I suppose somebody has to it first, and why can’t that someone be me?”

“Too true, too true.” Robik nodded his head all the while not looking up from his work. After a bit of silence he spoke again. “Well I suppose you mother has lunch that has gone cold on us now.

In fact Kael’s mother had not made them anything hot, claiming they never came to lunch on time anyways. It was salted beef with bread and soft cheese from the local cows. There were definitely some perks to living on this island full of cows. At meal time is when he remembered those perks. They ate mostly red meat, cheese, and eggs. Nothing wrong with that in Kael’s estimation.

“Well Luna, we better slow down on our commission work for a little bit.” Robik said out of nowhere

“Why’s that hun?” Kael’s mom’s response almost seemed rehearsed.

“The boy here is going out on his adventure soon, and I won’t be able to do as much without him.”

Luna nodded her head thoughtfully, “Where are you going dear?”
Kael was taken little off guard by the sudden conversation. “Well I mean not anywhere soon, I was just saying one day in the future.”

“Some day never comes son. You have to make a choice.”

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