Cedric Sharpears, the field elf, looked out on the winter wonderland and shuddered. Cedric hated the cold and hated the snow even more. While he conceded it did have a degree of charm about it, for the most part, it was cold and gave his chilblains a right tough time.
There wasn’t anything he could do about it as work beckoned and he knew that by the time he ploughed his way through the snow he would be late and he tried not to be late.
His partner, Ursula Shapliears, was buried in bed still, she didn’t need to get out in the cold so stayed in as long as she could. Ursula was the love of his life, and in the elf world, the shape of ears was a point of attraction among elves. Ursula had ears that set Cedric’s heart on fire. No matter what their situation, one look at her ears and Cedric was putty in her hands. It was common knowledge among the elf community that Cedric and Ursula had a strong thing going. He was referred to as “Cedric’s Got a Big One” for when they were out and holding hands Cedric was unable to control his delight.
Right now, she was in bed and so not a distraction. He stoked up the fire in the middle of their yurt threw in a few logs, called goodbye to his partner and love and set off.
It was a fair walk to the gilder forest where Cedric worked. He liked his job as the gilder trees were pleasant to work around. They gave off an odour that made Cedric feel good in himself.
That was what the nuts of the gilder tree were used for. Crushed and made into flour it was used by the gremlins to make bread that was sought after all through the fairy land. The gremlins being basically mean-spirited creatures knew the benefits of the bread and struck hard deals with anyone wanting a loaf.
Cedric thought of his tasks for the coming day. The harvest would be next week and all the trees needed to be readied, the tracks between them cleared so the magic harvester could extract the nuts and the pixie people who assisted could do their one job, making sure, not one nut was missed.
By the time he reached the forest his feet were frozen from the cold and his temper was not at its best. In his office, his assistant, Keplat Springears, had the fire going and the elfin coffee brewing.
Cedric acknowledged Keplat and poured himself a large cup, in the hope of warming his now trembling body.
He looked outside and in keeping with his morning noticed every tree covered in snow which gave the forest a magical appearance. Each tree had its own resident squirrel creature called a Daryl, and at that moment the Daryl’s were looking perplexed by their trees covered in snow. Their role in nature was to nurture the nuts, protect them and assist the harvest by making sure they didn’t get caught up in the harvester, as that always created a messy problem let alone the search for a replacement Daryl.
So, for the moment Cedric settled by the fire waiting for a shred of warmth to wash over him, his thoughts turned to Ursula’s ears and outside the snow started to fall again.