Tinker Page 5

You are a traveling tinker, leading your pack mule through the forest. Branches criss-cross the path so much that you walk continuously in shade. Ferns and moss carpet the forest floor. The day is peaceful.

You are half a day from Bobeck village. You've traveled this route many times, to Frankfurt and back to Dresden again.

2) Take the left path to a meadow.
3) Take the right path to a creek.

You enjoy your lunch in a meadow full of clover and chamomile. You can hear songbirds. They rise from a tree nearby and wheel around the meadow.

You notice their shadows join on the grass almost in the shape of a man. The shadowy form steadies. It is a man. It appears to leap across the meadow as the birds fly about.

The birds circle you, closer and closer. The shadow man capers around you, drawing nearer on each round. You've never seen anything like this.

4) Throw bread to the birds.
5) Dance with the shadow.

You dust yourself off and give the shadow a mock curtsy. As it spins around, you jump to keep up and go in rough circles around the meadow. The way the shadow's arms and legs caper makes you laugh. You sit down in the clover to catch your breath.

The birds circle you once more and then fly off over the forest, their shadows bursting apart into separate birds again.

You continue to Bobeck, stopping first at Mam Gudnar's house. You want to tell her about your odd and exhilarating encounter.

10) Sit inside.
11) Sit outside.