My mind is made up, I am preparing to make a journey to Mountain Shadow. When I informed Maria of my decision she seemed more amused than concerned. She informed me that my home would be left open should I decide to return. I refused to let her odd reaction deter me from my goal. The biggest problem I have now is my transportation. I was still not ready to attempt the trip on horseback, that much was clear.
In the past I have attempted to ride a horse twice. Both times I was thrown without much of a fight. So I either use a cart or a boat. Neither of which I own and have no funds to buy them. This means I must create them myself. Which method of death seems better is the real choice here. Drowning in the bay or getting eaten by vicious creatures. It is hard to take a single step in this world without fear creeping in. Even without death you still face the same mental hurdles. Second guessing decisions and losing confidence has become routine. Focus on the goal is the only way to silence the internal doubt. After talking to a few people in town I have chosen to make a boat. A simple rowboat is the most obvious choice.
Mountain Shadow is only a few miles north traveling by water and far less risk of attack. Once again luck has balanced the scales for me. There is a half-finished boat down in the village dry dock. The villager that started it is no longer with us. The rumor is he was captured by a village of goblins and made a slave. It feels a little callous to think of his loss as my gain. You never turn down the opportunity to get yourself a head start. I hate repeating myself with that line of thought, but its hard to paint how brutal this life is in words. Before dawn tomorrow I will work on the boat and will not stop until it is ready.
By the time the sun was up I had completed two oars from scratch and not much else. You start to think your tough and something comes along and knocks you on your ass. My father use to tell me that when I was a teenager. Kind of wish he was around for me to tell him he was right. About that and so much more. Building this boat is knocking me on my ass. Thought’s like those keep running through my mind and drives me like a demon. I start pounding tenons and pegs into the hull. I slow down only for a drink of water here and there.
The sun was telling me it was lunch time, but I refuse to quit. One hand bleeding, brain melting and I keep working. The seats are carved and attached inside the boat, oars locked in place and ready for use. Next I start making the boat water tight with tar. Making sure to fill every crevice and crack with the sticky black goo. It’s almost like I am racing the sun. It moving across the sky taunting me. Every fiber of my being is screaming quit, but its past that now. All I can see the remaining parts lying around me in a pile. One by one I attach or rig them. Tar here, pegs, there and finally a mooring anchor to keep the boat secure. When the pile is gone I am left a mumbling mess on the boat house floor. I vaguely recall stumbling my way home. Seems like I do that most nights more from exhaustion than anything else.
I awoke this morning and quickly put down the events of yesterday on paper. Well what passes for paper anyway. I must have some record of events as a reminder and possibly a warning. The sense of accomplishment is fleeting, with so much more yet to do. I received a note telling me to visit Maria at her home this morning. I will respond as it is never a good idea to ignore a meeting with the village mayor.