The Legend of Archibal

Walter had moved into town two winters ago. His mother constantly moved him and his older sister around, one town to the next. Walter always found it hard to adjust, just when he thought they had finally settled they would move. His sister was annoyed with their mother’s habit of rambling and swore that when she came of age she will not move again. He could not blame her. It seemed every time they moved, it got harder for him to make friends. Since their father abandoned them she had been fretting. She never gave a reason why they had to move and when they tried to get an answer from her she would insist, “Because I said so.”

When they moved to this new town, as it always happened he made no friends right away. At school nobody spoke to him until Alden came up to him. The only other person to talk to him were his Uncle and Aunt who owned the only inn in town called Swan Inn. It was a very popular place for travelers and town’s people alike to eat or have a drink or two. His Aunt Edna and Uncle Obel had no children of their own and thus treated him like their own child. It made him feel like he had finally found a home.

He wondered if that was the reason his mother had moved here since she had a hard time finding a job and Uncle Obel had offered her work at the inn. Besides finding a job she always had a hard time keeping one. Uncle Obel welcomed them with open arms. He had asked them to live with him at the inn but for some reason his mother refused. She found a cottage she was able to rent out.

The cottage was small with two bedrooms, a kitchen and a living space. He had his own room and his mother and sister shared the other. They were used to small quarters. The last house they lived in had only a kitchenette and one room. He slept on the floor while his mother and sister shared the bed. The floor was uncomfortable but he did not dare to complain. His mother had no patience for that.

His sister, who was older by six years, found a job at some manor working as an under-housemaid. Rather quickly, she had moved up as the owner’s personal assistant. She overlooked everything in the house, made sure the house was in order, that everyone was doing their job, checked the menu and ordered the food. She seemed happy with her job but lately she had been fighting with their mother. There had been days when they had stop speaking to each other and Walter was caught in the middle. He was glad to be out of the house in those instances.