Morgus E007, ‘Green Tomato Cow” part 1


Episode 007, Green Tomato Cow 


Our serial series is set in Kenneth Shumaker’s medieval fantasy realm of Quantos. We find the Apprentice Mage Morgus is out from the Mage’s University and on his one-year walk-about before he returns for his journeyman certification test on Autumn 50 of Pine, during the reign of King Regeanus III in the royal city of Mount Oryn’s South State district. Our intrepid hero, with a checkered past, is an attractive thirty-three-year-old human Jalnoric male with a bold personality and is determined to survive his walk-about year at any cost, even if it means snuggling in and working with nobility.

Previously in Morgus episode E006 on Autumn 79 Unicorn with:

After setting up a chapel in Hessan Manor, Morgus goes for a walk to meet an old friend, only to discover that the friend is dead. However, on his journey, Morgus gains a new friend, inviting the new friend to Hessan Manor. With Morgus’ guidance, the staff sets up a blacksmith shop in the trades shop of the estate. As a result, Baron Hessan gives Morgus three large heavy tomes to study for a future intent.

We continue now with Morgus episode E007 on:

Autumn 84 Unicorn

Now things can be easy, or they can be hard. Most of the time things are hard, and when they happen to be easy, people become suspicious. Oddly, Morgus is happy with today as he’s expecting a guest who is a friend, one that he easily happened upon a few days ago. It was a nice break after the difficulties of life. He may have been at odds with the laws of society as a pirate in his past, and Toaren recently reminded him of that past. Returning to South State district has reminded him of his past roguish lifestyle and his old attitudes. But life in the Mage University has altered his outlook somewhat, and seeing Leza opened up something in him he assumed didn’t exist. He had been told he was cold and calculating, at best, mischievous. But he matured in the university into something more, and Leza warmed his soul. He actually cares about her plight and has concern for her and Sesan’s future, damn it. He has so much concern, that last night he spent four hours thinking about Leza and Sesan before falling asleep, totally neglecting any spell work yesterday.

After washing, and dressing in his best clothing, Morgus walks downstairs to the staff dining room a full two hours before the staff morning meal, and an hour before Hez’s service to Imvor with Baron Hessan in attendance.

Walking into the dining room, Morgus trips on a pail by the door. Catching himself quickly, by clutching onto a chair back, Morgus looks behind himself, and he sees a steel pail of green tomatoes with flies buzzing about the pail.

Turning to the kitchen, he calls out. “Ada, what’s with the pail of green tomatoes?”

Coming out of the kitchen, the manor’s matron smiles, saying, “I’ve set them out for the dairy cow, Sarah. You can take them to her. If you do, I’ll have the cook give you a couple of extra cookies from the baking for Baron Hessan.”

Looking at the pail, then up at Ada, Morgus says, “At least two cookies for Leza, and I’d like two.”

Nodding, Ada smiles.

Laughing, Morgus picks up the pail, walking out to the corral to feed the green tomatoes to the cow, who greedily eats the fruit.

Returning to the manor in the dark, Morgus considers the whereabouts of the wights from the recent attack; they must still be in the area. One wight has a continuous light in his eyes, so he’s permanently blinded, and the other two will avoid him. But still? Where are the three?

Entering the dining room again, Morgus finds Bushnel at the table eating morning meal alone. The husbandman says, “I talked to Ada, and we agreed, I’d eat early and skip services this morning so that I can harness the carriage and head out before gods-rise to pick up your friend. You’ve been too happy since you returned from visiting them. So, we hope to get you to return to us by getting this over with soon.”

Morgus, sitting next to Bushnel, slaps the back of Bushnel’s shoulder, wholeheartedly laughing. “Thank you. I’ll try to focus again. When you see her, you’ll understand my preoccupation, Master Bushnel.”

Chuckling, Bushnel shrugs.


With the morning Imvor service over, Morgus sits with Hez. “So, what else do you need for your smithy?”

Looking smug, Hez replies, “I looked the shop over, and everything I need is there. But we’ll need more coal and iron sooner than later.”

“We’ll take care of that. So, what I need is a set of knives for my parchment crafting, but not standard knives. Top-of-the-line knives, as I’m making mage parchment of the highest quality. I can’t have any nicking, or tearing, or scratches. They need to be razor keen.”

Whistling, Hez responds, “Damn, you don’t start easy or simple. To do it well, it’ll take some time.”

“You have the time you need.” Offers Morgus.


Later sitting with Hessan in the large opulent office on the manor’s second floor, Morgus asks, “May I arrange apprenticeships over at Renol fief between tradesmen and citizens?”

The old man shakes his head. “No, you still need to get the guild or me to approve the contracts. At least, until you become my chamberlain.”

Nodding, Morgus answers, “I’ve started studying the first tome. I’ve studied the first ten pages containing the five principals of royal law. I’ll work quicker on the tomes.”


By, Kenneth Shumaker. 

To be continued in the next Morgus episode 007, part 2

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Join Kenneth Shumaker (Rusty Knight) in his Dragoman Bloodgrue Volume collection anthologies. The first in the series, ‘Dragoman Bloodgrue, Volume I: Fare Where?’ is a collection of the first four episodes of the Dragoman Bloodgrue serial series. Read how Bloodgrue tests the gods’ resolve. Do the gods let the brave be fools? Is Bloodgrue brave or a fool? Follow Bloodgrue to see where his life’s path leads him. In ‘Dragoman Bloodgrue, Volume I: Fare Where?’ we are introduced to a young Bloodgrue as he begins his journey climbing the social ranks of Mount Oryn in North Docks. Find this fine colour print volume to purchase as a paperback or e-book on:

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