A Night Whisper about Ethel-lass

(Being a letter from Lancogard North-took to his friend and fellow conspirator, Applecider Bolingbroke, delivered by direct owl-post under cover of darkness)

Lancogard North-took to Applecider Bolingbroke, greeting:

Well, aren’t WE the ambitious gardening adventuress!  You intend to dabble in cultivating kingsfoil, or “ethel-lass” as the Elves name it!?




Even though I confess to having my own well-thumbed copy of Gardener’s Friend, you are most definitely cutting off that pert nose of yours to spite your face.  Need I point out to you (and I’m putting on my leather hat for this) that you’re only using a few sources of information, and not really investigating all the points?  (Though I do applaud your drawing conclusions from your reading into Gardener’s Friend a little deeper, well done I do say…)


IF – and I say, IF – you are adamant and stubborn as a Sandheaver about growing “ethel-lass” as a sideline, then why have you not consulted the first-order sources of information at your disposal? To wit:  the Rangers themselves!!  Surely to goodness, THEY of all people have better lore at their fingertips as to the cultivation of such an herb!?


And just to add even MORE leaven to the lore-loaf you’re trying to rise, are we both not affiliated with House Bar-en-Acharn?  And exactly WHO is the mistress and premier Lore-keeper of said House??  And just WHO ELSE may have a library of the most exquisitely voluminous proportions, just waiting to be perused, pored over, and pillaged for information regarding the herb in question?


Have you cogitated what I’m telling you??


Now, far be it from me to chastise you for incomplete investigative technique, although you’ve done a fine job with what you have - I propose that you fire off a letter to Her Ladyship post-haste, and I have little doubt she might, in her own inimitable words, “commence a new line of research” regarding the “ethel-lass” herb you so desperately wish to cultivate!


Now, I sent little Maddie back without a reply, just for the reason that I wanted to write this out and give the gift of my owl a little work to do.  Oh, and by the way:  “Henry” is not the kind of name I might bestow upon such a clever and useful bird.  You explained in your last that the Elves named him Thuringlim, or “Secret Voice” – well, what’s more secret than a whisper?  So, I worked a little bit and the clever owlet now answers to “Whisper” as his useful name.  So, here is the letter I send to you by way of Whisper’s silent wings in the night. 


Take my advice, Cider.  Talk with both the Rangers, and Her Ladyship.  I think you’ll not be disappointed.

Yours Always,