Two villages lay across our route today. They sit side by side – only divided by a stream. I took Noralei with me this time and Dunfallon joined Rumble to guard Willie.
The two towns are competitive and hold a grudging antagonism towards one another that only became apparent after Noralei and I passed over the bridge connecting them. The denizens of the second held aloof from us until they learned that we were not from their neighboring town. Then they were all smiles. About everyone we met warned us against moving on. They had nothing concrete to add, just stale rumors.
When we rejoined the rest of our party on the other side they had quite a story to relate. Their path had no bridge to carry them over the stream, so Rumble shouldered both of his charges and flew them over. But something about the presence of the water set Willie off and Rumble was hard pressed to maintain his grip on both of them. He had to return to earth before he could renew the spell.
We all will have to exercise caution in future when it comes to Willie and water.