Letters to Rautu: Girls Scouts
It was when the Den Asaan had returned from delivering his daily reports to the Hakriyaa and he had sat down to enjoy his quiet evening when there was a knock at the door of the commons. The giant stood and eyed the closed entrance with circumspect as the lightness of the knocks and the quick manner in which they were tendered caused the Den Asaan to be wary of the person who made them. He crept toward the door with silence in his steps and spied the shadow of the two thin legs beneath it to gauge his visitor. When the knocks came again, louder and with impatience, Rautu's irritable sensibilities were stirred and much to his chagrin, Rautu opened the door.
There before him was a small girl not five years of age, standing with a cheery smile on her face and a box of cookies in her hand. The Den Asaan sneered at the child's presence and he was about to close the door in fear of the child entering the commons and tainting it with Mivaari diseases when the girl began to speak in a small squeaking voice.
"Good day, Den Asaan," she said in a perfunctory manner. "My name is Miri and I live at the orphanage in Diras Church. Hundreds of orphans across Frewyn need your help-"
"Why have you come to my home, Mivaari?" the giant's voice rumbled, quickly losing patience with her speech. "Do you come to ask for a contribution or to sell those?" The giant pointed down to the distinctive box in her hand and judging the size and the make of the familiar white encasement, Rautu knew well from where the delights had come.
"Diras Delights donated the cookies so we could sell them and make money for the Church," the little girl said with a proud smile.
"I will not give a contribution to further your ignorance," the Den Asaan protested. The giant decided that the baked goods were of little consequence now that the child had placed her hands upon the box and began to close the door, prepared to forget that the girl had ever come to disturb him.
"But, these are specially made cookies," she said with a hop, lifting the cookies up for the giant's perusal. "See?"
The Den Asaan's attention was drawn back to the girl and he peered into the box she displayed to inspect its contents. His eyes opened wide to find glittering treats he had never before seen during his visits inside the sweet aegis of the bakery. "I will take those and give payment to Diras Delights myself," the giant grunted. Rautu reached down and took the box from the girl's hand but when he turned to close the door of the commons he found that the child was attached to his prize. The Den Asaan moaned and lifted the box high, shaking his arm to force her to relent but the light child would not be persuaded and continued her hold. "Release them, Mivaari," the Den Asaan roared.
"No, Den Asaan," the girl said, her feet dangling in the air as she enforced her tiny grip around the box. "You can't take them. They're for charity."
"You have come to my residence and you are requesting payment for these confections. If you wish me to purchase them you much do something to earn my veneration."
The girl thought of a feat great enough to impress the giant and there was a pause as she deliberated, still hanging from the box within the giant's grasp. "I lost two teeth yesterday," she happily declared.
The giant sighed at the child's paltry and involuntary achievement and he realized the only manner in which he was to rid himself of her was to either make a donation or relinquish his prize. Rautu decided it was more commendable to sacrifice his desired treats than to further support an affluent and fallacious organization and he tossed the box to the ground, sending the child along with it. He glowered down at the girl as she came to her feet once more. "Leave, Mivaari," the giant commanded. "If you return with something adequate to sell me that will not go to your uninformed Church, I will consider making a contribution."
Rautu closed the door and returned to the hearth in the commons when another knock similar to the first set of raps came again. The giant knew well who it was and grumbled as he tended the fire. "Away, Mivaari," he shouted.
"But the army lady said you would buy them if they were made with dark chocolate," the girl said, her voice muffled from behind the barrier of the door.
The girl stood in the hall rustling the box of cookies in her hand to hopefully lure the creature from his den. She ceased her disparaging motions and waited, listening with her ear to the door for any movement within. The girl waited a few moments but heard nothing to suggest the giant's resolve had been weakened. She was about to turn around and surrender to the giant's unbending determination when the door to the commons was suddenly flung ajar.
In a confusing flurry of movement, the giant tossed the sum of three silver coins into the hall, much more than the rare cookies had required for purchase, and he grabbed the box from the girl as she was distracted, slamming the door once again to hide within his burrow and enjoy his reward. The sounds of the Den Asaan fiendishly tearing the box open were heard from the hall and his hum of delight echoed from the commons to the hallway as he took in the scent of his conquest.
The girl giggled and collected the indications of her victory from the ground. When she counted the whole of the Den Asaan's fervent contribution, she noted that she had made more in one delivery than any of the other children had ever earned in a day, and she skipped down the winding steps and out of the keep quite pleased that she had guilted the giant into paying her to leave.
The commander and King Alasdair had witnessed the whole of the event from their position around the corner of the hall, positioning themselves well before the commander had instigated the child into visiting her mate. When the girl had come to the front gate with hopes of melting the unsuspecting hearts of Frewyn's regiments, the commander had guided her steps toward the commons instead, promising the girl that if she correctly riled the giant, she would be well rewarded for her efforts.
The commander smiled and folded her arms as she and the king listened to the happy sounds emanating from the beast within the commons. "Let it never be said that he doesn't support the customs of our Church," she murmured to Alasdair.
"You do realized you've just shown me how to bride him," the king said.
"He was fooled once. I daresay it will take more than a box of chocolate-dipped cookies to fool him again." The commander winked at her king and returned to commons, hoping there was at least one cookie left for her consumption.