One Snowy Day

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W. R. Frady
Soldier (Level 12)
2233 XP

Verdian took a deep breath as he strolled down the old woodcutter’s road, heading into the Greenbriar Woods. The scenery around him was breathtaking, even though he had seen it every year since he was small. A light dusting of snow blanketed the road and the surrounding countryside, setting the realm of Valimar aglow in the early morning light. Dull gray clouds hung low in the sky as icy feathers of finest down gently settled upon all they touched. In stark contrast to the wintry scene that extended out before him, Autumn hues set the nearby hillsides aflame their majestic colors enticing the eye with an enchantment that could keep one spellbound for hours if it wasn’t so very cold.

The old road dipped through a small glen dotted with sparse birches, and poplars which still held onto the meager leaves that remained from the constant coercing tug of the unrelenting breeze that blew here. Verdian was forced to pull his cloak tighter about his thin frame as the wind attempted to cut through his meager layers of clothing that served as his only protection against the elements. After crossing a small brook whose sides were lined in a thin layer of ice, the woodcutter’s road took a sharp turn leading the youth up, over a rocky knoll where he spied his grandmother’s mill house in the distance.

The cottage was a small domicile with enough room for a kitchen, bed, and common area by an old hearth-style fireplace. There was no lack of wood for heat, as the mill provided all and more than they would ever need. Verdian could not wait to get there, and the scent of fresh baked bread that was carried to him on the breeze made that feeling even more prominent in his mind. the echo of the water mill groaning between the icy-cold, and the ever pushing weight of the aqueduct leading from the nearby spring could be heard, as if welcoming him. Out of nowhere, the sharp baying of hounds snapped him back to the present. His grandfather’s dog’s tore out of the old barn and bore down on him, as though they were on the hunt. Verdian took off at breakneck speed, hoping to beat the slavering beasts to the door of the cottage. It would be a vain effort, but he knew that one day he hoped to outrun the hounds to the door of the cottage. The cold air burned in his chest as he propelled himself down the old roadway. The hounds cut across the field, a move they had never done before. The young man was aghast as the pack of hounds darted into the road directly ahead of him.

The dogs and the boy met in a clash of yips, barks, and an attempted evasion, but Verdian’s effort was futile at best. The biggest of the hounds, a dog by the name of Snoot, leapt up and with both front paws knocked the boy to the ground. Before he could recover, the youth was covered by the pack, yipping sniffing licking and pawing at him. Each of the overly-friendly canines greeted Verdian with their own brand of hellos.

“Oh well,” Verdian thought, “I guess my cloak will be getting cleaned today after all.” He struggled to his feet, and brushed the mud, snow, and dog hair from his clothes as best he could, and with a few ticks of his tongue, a whistle and a pat on his leg, had the hounds following him as he made the last leg of his journey. “Now,” he thought as he glanced back to the snowy countryside, “I’ve had enough of the cold; I need a hot bowl of Grandma's stew. “ With that he went to the cottage and knocked heartily.


I hoped that you enjoyed "One Snowy Day" I wrote this a while back, inspired by a light dusting of snow that had fallen overnight at my house in North Carolina. It was just a fun and whimsical piece that reminded me of my childhood, when just walking to your, friend's, neighbors' or nearby family's house was an adventure of its own, especially on a snowy day when the woods were aglow with the light of the new fallen snow, and the world seemed an enchanted realm of its own.

I am a writer based in the foothills of North Carolina, specializing in Gothic Horror and Fantasy. Though I do play around with some Science Fiction.