“Come on. Let’s do it! There’s probably some amazing stuff in there.” Nobel was excitedly pointing to the blacktar satyr camp set among the trees at the bottom of the hill.
“What if they catch us?” said Fenn.
“They won’t catch us. They’ll be busy with that boat of travelers.” The boys had been sitting on the hill looking over the river and forest for most of the afternoon, and like most young men they were looking for some excitement. They had spotted the satyr camp about 30 minutes prior, but some mischief had come to Nobel’s mind the moment he saw the boat coming down the river. Blacktar satyrs were well known thieves, usually luring travelers and passing boats with their enchanting blacktar pipe smoke and pan flutes before making off with the helpless saps goods. Now a large boat carrying about half a dozen people was headed this way and Nobel was not going to let this opportunity pass. He suggested they sneak down to the satyr camp after the satyrs left for the river bank. “Besides,” Nobel signed, “I’m too sneaky.”
“Just because you can’t hear them doesn’t mean they can’t hear you, idiot.” replied Fenn aloud.
Nobel gave him the finger and then ran down the hill toward the camp.
“Why do I always follow you into these things? And I’m the smart one, why don’t I get to make the plans?” Fenn said mostly to himself as he trudged along reluctantly. By the time he got to the camps edge, Nobel was already leaning so far into an old wooden chest that his feet were off the ground. He’d already thrown half of the trunks contents onto the ground around the chest.
“Oh that’s super stealthy. They’ll never know we were here now.” whispered Fenn.
Nobel came up out of the chest and rolled his eyes. “I was going to put it back” he signed. He held up what appeared to be a loop of green rope with 3 knots in it.
“Is that for the satyrs to hang you with?” signed Fenn. Now that he was in the camp he could hear the pan flute music and realized just how close the satyrs still were. He was happy to keep his mouth shut for a while and let his hands do the talking lest his lips make any more noise then Nobel already was.
Nobel looked disappointed. “It’s a holy symbol of Magdh. I wonder where they got it?” he signed.
“Is that your dream girl again? The one that looks like a bear? Maybe she left it on the forest floor in one of her magical steaming bear droppings. Lucky you!” Fenn signed with feigned excitement. He pocketed a few strange looking coins lying in a pot near a small tent.
They continued to rummage through things over the next few minutes in silence. Fenn had found a backpack and was filling it with anything that looked valuable. He suddenly realized that he could no longer hear the pan flutes and was not sure when they had stopped. A cold sweat broke out on his face and he rushed to grab Nobel and leave, when he turned to see Nobel, his back still to Fenn, staring at 2 very angry satyrs. Nobel was attempting to speak with them in Sylvan, his hands raised in deference to pacify them. When Fenn walked up and touched his shoulder, Nobel turned and glanced at him. They nodded and Fenn gave him the thumbs up. Nobel suddenly dropped to his knees, hastily grabbed a handful of dirt, and threw it in the face of one of the satyrs who reeled back, clawing at his eyes. Simultaneously, Fenn threw the back pack he had been filling at the same satyr, hitting him in the gut and knocking him over.
“I thought you were going left!” shouted Fenn exacerbated.
“I looked to the right one! You were supposed to go left!” insisted Nobel.
“But I’m already on your right! If we switched over-”. Before the argument could continue, the remaining satyr pulled his knife and lunged at the two. Fenn instinctually covered the area in a blanket of darkness and yanked Nobel’s arm.
They raced back up the hill with the satyrs close behind, having quickly recovered from the ploy. As they reached the hill top, they realized there was no cover save for a single tree. Fenn pointed up the tree. Nobel gave him a bewildered look but scrambled up the tree nonetheless with Fenn close behind. By the time the two satyrs reached the crest of the hill, Fenn and Nobel were hiding in a high branch, obscured by leaves. The satyrs scanned the area, and finding nothing, started to pace around the tree, looking for the thieves among its branches.
“What’s your plan now, oh great and powerful mastermind?” signalled Nobel.
Fenn responded, “Can you fly?”
Nobel silently mouthed “What?”. Fenn didn’t respond. Instead he was eyeing the two satyrs intently as they paced around the tree.
“Okay, get ready to fly.” whispered Fenn as the satyrs neared the tree base beneath their branch.
“Fenn, you realize that I can’t fly, right?” signed Nobel desperately, though Fenn was not even so much as glancing at him, his eyes held tight to the satyrs. “Wait, can YOU fly?”
Just then Fenn leaned toward Nobel and pushed him from the tree. The cacaphony of Nobel’s screaming and breaking branches drew the attention of the satyrs who looked up only to be crushed by the impact of the full weight of the falling human. Fenn crawled down from the tree and helped the stunned Nobel to his feet. The satyrs had been knocked unconscious beneath him. One of them had a leg that did not seem to be bending in the proper direction, even for a satyr.
“See, that’s why I should make the plans.” stated Fenn proudly. “And look on the brightside: you got to at least keep your magical bear dropping to remember this by.” He pointed to the three knotted rope around Nobel’s neck.
“Maybe we should just learn how to actually fly.” replied Nobel, rubbing his bruised body.