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Hammer Time [Locust]

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#1Locust Paars 

on Mon May 01, 2017 10:02 pm

The blacksmith’s shop wasn’t unfamiliar to him. A couple of days ago if he recalled correctly, he had done another job in the town, the bath house one where he was tasked with pasting fliers and distributing them as well. While doing so, he had seen the black smith’s shop as well as the request that was pasted on the small notice board in front of it. The rest of the board was filled with done requests, available items, goods and some basic advertisement stuff.

That morning, before he went to the blacksmith, Locust was uneasy. He was quite afraid of fire and disliked warm places. A forge would be something out of his worst nightmare. However, he needed to go through some jobs to earn his living and to understand his new life a bit more, so even if it was hard, it was something he had to experience, at least, this is how it felt like. Because he was afraid of the fiery pain an accident can provide, he had decided to make a small bandage with a herbal reagent that would ease the pain if it ever came to that. He opened the third drawer in the small kitchen the hostel room had provided and took out some white caletus, pepper mint, one piece of garlic and some mugworth root. He poured 1/4 cup of water into a pan and got it to simmer while he quickly cut white caletus into smaller pieces, making sure to take off the soft, cotton like petals first. When the string-like body of the herb was cut, he placed all the herbs into the pan and started stirring from time to time. When it was done he let it cool and placed a bandage in front of him. He placed the petals into the mixture and let them soak the potion up before placing them on the sticky side of the bandage. The leaves soaked up the mixture and now he could wrap this bandage on himself if he was to ever get hurt.

He reached the blacksmith rather quickly as his memory of the city lay out was getting better with everyday. The sound of metal clanking and hammering was also quite helpful to pin point the location. When he raised the drapes of the open walled shop he saw the forge, two men inside and an anvil. There were many kinds of equipment, casts, long iron sticks and more scattered around and also placed neatly on the shelves. There was a door to the left, that was outside the drapes that probably went inside where the actual trade happened. Locust stared at the back of the man that was hammering away and the scent of sweat quickly reached his nose. He didn’t mind it at all. The other guy, whom Locust assumed was the assistant got hurt saw him first. He had short cut red hair and green eyes, obvious freckles and while he wasn’t as muscular as the man who was hammering, whom Locust assumed to be Barras, his body told his days spent at the forge for sure.

Notified by the assistant Barras turned around. He had a tight green shirt wrapped around his big body and some suspenders holding his pants up. Locust enjoyed the man’s big shape, some people were able to take very good care of themselves for sure. Maybe it came with work, but he had heard how famous Barras was. He had truly made a good life out of his situations.
“Hey,” Barras said with a smile. “You were that guy that took the flier that was in front of my shop, right?”
“Yes,” Locust responded. The man had kind features, rugged but kind. His jawline was prominent and eye catching while the small stubble at the end of his pointy chin brought everything together. His eyes were almond shaped and he had brown irises. Some black marks on his face showed that he was working since early morning. His clothes were soaked with his sweat. Locust inadvertently touched the man’s arm, to their surprise. He wanted to check what he was made out of.
“Is something wrong?” the blacksmith asked, he didn’t look like he was uncomfortable, but he was quite confused in all his honesty.
“My apologies,” Locust responded and took his hand away. “I am ready to start whenever.”

Until the day was done, Locust had to do a simple cycle that they showed him. First, he watched Barras take out a metal cup looking liquid holder from the fire with tongs, filled with molten iron and pour it into a cast. When this was done, some minutes were spent waiting for it to cool before it was placed on the anvil while still soft to be beaten. Locust’s job was exactly this. The assistant had a cask on one arm but was still quite strong enough to hold the iron in place for Locust to beat on. This sounded tiring from every angle, but there was also a tint of excitement in Locust’s insides. It would be something different for him to do.

After being shown the job two times, they started the work. The assistant would crack jokes from time to time and Barras would give out a heavy laugh. While Locust would sometimes miss the jokes, he too was enjoying the scene was was playing before his eyes. Each time a piece of iron would be place in front of him, he would hold the hammer with both his hands and change his hits from low and fast to high and heavy. He would make sure to get them to check it out before he was done. They seemed pleased with Locust’s attention to detail, and as the sun started to go down, their pleasant time came to  and end as well.

Locust hadn’t realized that he was quite sweaty while he was working. Thankfully however, Barras had told him to take his top of before. Before he was rewarded, the smith was kind enough to let him use the shower inside his room, upper floor there. After washing up, he was rewarded and sent his way, not before being told that he can come back tomorrow as well.

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