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The Journal and Sketchbook of Calla Brandybuck  by Dreamflower

11 Astron, S.R. 1370

For the first time in a week, I see the Sun peeking her way in through my bedroom window. I had begun to despair of the rain ever leaving; I have a need for Spring sunshine and fresh air.

I make a quick first breakfast of tea, bread and fruit, and snatch my sketchpad and my hat, and I am on my way. I stop briefly at the Masterís apartment; Cousin Rory greets me pleasantly, and I visit for a few minutes with Cousin Mirabella. The widow of Cousin Gorbadoc is looking well for her age--she is a Took after all, and Thain Gerontiusí daughter--but I fear she will be following her husband before too much longer.

Finally, I make my way out of Brandy Hall, and into the sunlight! The sky is very blue this morning. I fear that watercolors shall never quite capture that light! Everywhere spring flowers are blooming. The bulbs have been flowering since the end of Rethe--I spy anemones, crocus, irises, daffodils with their bright yellow lending back the light from the Sun. I also see some shy pansies, and bluebells. And there, some of the buds just opening on the primulas.

Speaking of primulas, I see my cousin, Primula Baggins, out this morning with her little lad, Frodo. She is carrying him about, laughing as they point out various things, and she coaxes him into speaking their names, which he does in a clear piping voice. He is not even two yet--I do believe his birthday is not until the end of Halimath, but he already seems to know more words than many faunts do. Primula is clad in creamy white lawn with a blue sash, and wears a bonnet of blue as well. And little Frodo is wearing a playsuit of the same blue. I watched Primula stitching it only a few weeks ago, and I know that she has embroidered tiny bumblebees on the pocket.

I tuck myself onto one of the garden benches, out of sight, and pull out my silverpoint stylus, and open my sketchpad.

"Do you see the bird, Frodo?" Primula points to a nearby beech, its leaves only just beginning to unfurl, where a finch with a scarlet cap is merrily chirping away.

Frodo laughs, and pointing with a chubby finger says brightly "Bird!" Then he turns a knowing look on his mother, and says "Bird sings, Mama!"

She laughs and lifts him high. "Oh, my clever lad!"

"Down, mama! Walk!"

She obligingly lowers her son, and he takes a few wobbly steps. Before he can lose his balance and fall upon the ground, she takes his hands, and holding him up by them, allows him to walk before her.

I sketch rapidly. They make a charming composition, all unaware of my presence as they are. I am pleased with the result. I believe that I shall ink it, and perhaps render it into a watercolor. I am quite sure that Cousin Drogo, Primulaís husband will be pleased with it on my birthday in a few weeks.


Click on the link below to see "Cousin Calla's" picture:†

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