I finally got around to writing my first Redwall story ever! I randomly got the idea and decided to write it!
Warning though, it is kinda sad...
Hope you enjoy it!
The First and Last Snowfall
Staring at the Abbey grounds from a high window, I had a slight feeling of melancholy. Gone were the bright, warm summer days, and now even the trees lay bare without any leaves. A cool fall breeze stirred their branches. Dark grey clouds filled the sky overhead. It was much too cold for anybeast to be out; they were all safe and warm within the Abbey walls. I let out a soft sigh as I brushed my paw over the red sandstone window ledge. Everything outside was lacking its vibrant colour and life. It was all fading away as winter slowly approached.
“Ello, Wydran!” an energetic voice called out from behind me, stirring me from my thoughts and causing me to jump slightly. Turning, I saw who the source of the voice was: a young hedgehog dibbun named Oliver, who was standing in the doorway. He was wearing a little blue tunic that matched the colour of his big eyes, and had a white cord tied about his waist. He stared up at me with an enthusiastic grin on his face. Even if the outside world is fading, there still seems to be plenty of life within these walls
, I thought to myself.
“Hi there, Oli,” I replied with a smile of my own. Most creatures in the Abbey simply referred to him as ‘Oli’ instead of using his full name.
“Wotcha doin’?” he asked, bouncing toward me over the stone floor.
“Nothin’, really,” was my response, “just lookin’ out the window.”
Oliver stood next to me and stared out the window as well. Suddenly his eyes went wide with surprise and his mouth dropped open. “Lookit!” he exclaimed. “Somefing is falling from the sky! Wot is it?” He ran up to the ledge and tried to lift himself up to get a better view.
I picked him up off the floor to give him a boost. “That’s snow,” I explained. “You can tell it’s winter when the snow starts to fall and it gets really cold. A new season is starting.”
“Wow,” he said quietly, then quickly turned to me. “Let’s go outside! I wanna see the snow!”
I set him back down on the floor. “Maybe later. We’re goin’ to eat lunch soon,” I told him. Oliver didn’t say anything, he just stared up at me sadly with his big beady blue eyes. I chuckled. “Alright ye rascal, but only for a short while,” I said, giving in.
“Hooray!” he shouted, and scampered out of the room. I hurried off after him, and together we walked down the stairs to the ground floor. I was going to get some extra clothing for us to stay warm outside, but he ran outside as soon as we walked by the nearest door.
I chased after him and shivered as I stepped out into the cold wind. Oliver didn’t seem to mind too much as he pranced about the grass, catching little snowflakes in his paws.
“Snow, snow!” he repeated cheerfully as he moved off further into the yard. I smiled at the sight of the dibbun enjoying his first snowfall and kept a close eye on him.
Suddenly Oliver ceased his little dance and looked over at me. “Who’s coffin’?” he asked.
I frowned and listened closely for a moment. There was indeed the sound of somebeast coughing not too far off. Soon after there was also the sound of knocking at one of the wicker gates in the wall that surrounded the Abbey. I rushed over to the fate, and Oliver kept close behind me.
Opening the gate, I found an elderly hedgehog lady standing there. She was of small stature and seemed rather thin and frail. She was wearing a faded dress and shawl, and her sandals were quite worn. She carried with her a walking stick, which was just a large branch she probably found in the woods. She looked up at us with a delicate smile and a soft look in her grey eyes.
“G’day, young’uns,” she said with a hoarse voice. “Would ye mind lettin’ in a little ole hedgehog in?”
“Not at all, please do come in, I said to her. “Welcome to Redwall Abbey, marm. My name is Wydran. Pleased to meet you.”
“I’m Oliver!” the dibbun added happily.
“Thank ye kindly. My name is Vervain,” she said as she hobbled inside the walls with her walking stick. I closed the gate shut behind her and she burst into a coughing fit.
“Are you alright?” I asked with concern.
“I’m fine, thank ye dearie,” she replied with a nod and another smile.
“Come on, let’s go into the main Abbey building. It’s far too cold to stay out here,” I said. We walked together at a steady pace toward the Abbey, and Oliver continued frolicking about.
“Ye know, I’ve always wanted to see Redwall,” Vervain told me. “As a young girl I’d heard many stories about it, and quite a few on my travels, too.”
“Well, we’re glad to have you here,” I said with a kind smile.
Vervain looked over at the hedgehog dibbun and chuckled. He was now attempting to catch the tiny snowflakes on his tongue. “Wot a lovely little’un. Is this his first time seeing the snow?”
“Yes,” I responded with a quick nod, “he seems to be enjoying it.”
“Yes… and I feel that this may be the last time for me,” Vervain said quietly.
I didn’t really know what to say to that, but by then we were at the door of the Abbey. We entered and I led her into the Great Hall, where Brother Alfred happened to be sitting with some parchments and a cup of tea.
Brother Alfred was a middle aged squirrel with red-grey fur. He was of average height and wore little spectacles upon his nose. He donned the brown habit of the Order of Redwall. Upon seeing us, he instantly rose from his seat and walked over to us.
“A newcomer? Welcome to Redwall Abbey!” he said. “I am Brother Alfred of the Order, how may I be of assistance to you?”
Vervain introduced herself to the brother and took a look around the Great Hall, taking in all its sights: the stained glass windows and high ceilings, as well as the tapestry that displayed the Abbey’s entire history.
“This place is truly wonderful, just as the tales say,” Vervain spoke softly in awe.
“Wydran, please get an early lunch from the kitchens for our guest,” Brother Alfred said.
I nodded and walked into the kitchens. The cooks put together a tray of mint tea, steaming, creamy mushroom soup and some scones covered in honey. They told me that if more was needed, lunch was about to begin anyway.
I took the tray out into the Great Hall to find that the others had already left in the short time I had been away. Only little Oliver was left, sitting on a bench at one of the large tables.
“Where did the others go?” I asked him, looking about.
“Miz Vervain was coffin’ agin, so they went up to the infirm,” he explained.
I nodded and walked over to the stairs. Once again the little hedgehog trotted along beside me.
The infirmary door was open, but I knocked softly on it anyway to alert the others of my presence. Vervain was now lying down on one of the beds, while Brother Alfred stood beside her, preparing some herbs. He looked over as we entered.
“Ah, Wydran, could you stay here with out patient for a moment? There are some things I need to get, and I also need to find our Infirmary Keeper to tell her that we have a beast in here,” he said to me. I nodded quickly and walked further into the room. Brother Alfred thanked me and walked out quickly.
I brought the tray over and set it down on the table by the bed. “Here, miss. I’ve brought up some lunch for you,” I said, smiling.
The elderly hedgehog lady looked over at me with a soft gaze and smiled too. “Thank ye very kindly, but I’m not too hungry right now,” she said. Her voice still sounded rather hoarse. She coughed a few times before speaking again. “Right now, I just need a little rest. My bones are weary from travelling so much…”
I glanced at Oliver for a moment, who was staring at Vervain but hadn’t said anything yet. “Would you like us to step out so ye can get some sleep?” I asked.
“No, please stay here,” Vervain said. She coughed lightly. “I’m so glad I was able to make it here to Redwall Abbey. I’ve reached my goal.” Her voice was now not much more that a whisper. She smiled at the two of us. “You two are fine young lads, and you’ll have many adventures yet. But for me, my time is now ending.” She looked up and closed her eyes slowly. “I can move on… happily.”
She lay there limp, and for a few moments I found myself frozen, not knowing exactly what to do.
“Miz Vervain?” Oliver asked.
“She’s, resting now. Come along, let’s let ’er be,” I said to him, standing up. “Run along to the Great Hall now, I’ll be there in a moment myself.”
Oliver left the room and I looked again at the still form of Vervain. She was no longer breathing.
I stepped out into the hallway and found Brother Alfred. After I told him what happened, his face fell instantly.
“Oh dear,” he said with a sigh. “Thank you, Wydran. Go down and take some lunch, we can take care of things from here.”
The Abbey bells tolled out, letting everybeast know it was time to gather in the Great Hall and eat lunch. I was in no mood to eat, however. Instead, I returned to my place by the window and stared out across the Abbey grounds again. A thing white layer was now starting to cover everything as the little snowflakes continued to pour out from the sky.
Like the trees and flowers outside, Vervain had faded away with the coming of winter. Everything had its beginning and end, that was inevitable.
I continued to observe the outside world, once again feeling that sensation of melancholy within me.
So there's the story... how was it? Please be honest! Critique and comments would be appreciated ^^