Ned was left to his own devices and learned about camouflage. He tied heather, fern and twigs to his clothing, and made a piece of cloth bound with foliage to wrap around his head. When he went to ground, it was almost impossible to see him. The boy had basic weaponry too. A catapult had been fashioned out of a Y-shaped stick and some stretchy string. With practice, his accuracy became quite good with a supply of pebbles carried in a pouch. Continue reading


As time went on, many attacks were thwarted by Jorrin and the cut-throats were angry their easy money had almost dried up. Some attacks were successful, but only when that man never showed up to halt the proceedings. The sporadic bands of lawless freebooters got together and decided the hooded figure must have something to do with the Snook, which was on the frontier of the King’s land. A sworn enemy of the Kingdom was the fortress town of Malaxia, which clung to high ground surrounded by swamps in lands afar. Behind its stone walls was an army training for war. Malaxia’s Empire of conquered territories spread all the way to a vast forest. On the other side lay the borders of the Realm. Continue reading


Jorrin prowled the woods and saved people time and again. He was an expert sword fighter, too quick for any of the lumbering outlaws. Each time he prevented a robbery, Jorrin ensured his face remained obscured under the hood. And he never asked for anything in return, always ensuring the merchants or travellers safely continued their journeys. Continue reading

Hooded Man

Jorrin was staking out the main path through the forest leading to the Snook. He had heard a consignment of goods was due to be delivered. In the afternoon, he saw six men leading horses over the track. They were fully loaded with goods and moved with a lot of noise. Given how dangerous the woods were at the moment, they should have been more careful. Jorrin shook his head. Some movement caught his eye further up a bank of trees. He focussed on the woodland overlooking the path. Men were up there, he could sense it. They moved furtively toward the merchants. Continue reading

Dangerous Times

Merchants travelled through the Foijen carrying valuable wares and many of the villagers were rich. This attracted marauders to the land. They were unscrupulous men who prowled around looking to kill and steal. There were often gangs of up to a dozen men lying in wait for unsuspecting victims and robberies became more frequent. Continue reading

Bandits And Beasts

Ned had a small, white dog called Skar, whose coat was as soft as cotton. She liked to growl and play, but learned not to bark. It was important to know when to be quiet in the Foijen as enemies lurked in the shadows. Gangs of bandits frequenting the woodland, always looking for opportunities to attack and steal. And the wolves out there hunted in packs. Ned often heard the howling somewhere deep in the night shadows. Continue reading

Family In The Holt

Gira busied herself organising the home, while Jorrin sometimes spent days away. Their three sons were all very different. The eldest, Merek, was fifteen years old and spent time inventing gadgets to help their life of sustainability. The middle son, Ned, was aged thirteen but looked younger. He adventured in the forest daily and knew every corner of Ragged Wood. The youngest son was Fauder and only a toddler, but he was showing early signs of being creative. Continue reading

Forest Life

Jorrin and Gira set up home in a far corner of Ragged Wood known locally as the Foijen, which was the most lawless part of the forest and considered by the Snook villagers to be out of bounds. If anyone entered, there was a real danger they would not return. It was rumoured beasts and bandits lurked in the depths of those woods. On still nights, howling wolves could be heard across the darkened land. And merchants came to the Snook with tales of marauding gangs prowling the Foijen. Continue reading

A New Gentleman

Grotter met the posh people and explained he came from less sunny climes, but the Snook had a reputation far and wide for being THE place to live. This seemed to please everyone and they talked and smiled. Grotter was delighted he was fitting in with the wealthy. Continue reading


Of the many peasants in the Snook, one man was fervid about living there. His name was Grotter and he saw the village as an up-and-coming place with lots of nice shops opening up. Beyond the High Street, in his view, some splendid houses were being built. Grotter aspired to live there one day. But, for now, his life of toiling in a mine was a difficult one. He grafted long hours underground for just enough food to feed his wife and son. Grotter thought his status was beneath that which a man of his calibre was capable of achieving. And all the rich folk thought they were better than people like him. If only he had a chance to show everyone what an amazing person he was. Disgruntled with his lot, Grotter hatched a plan for an uplift in status. He was desperate to be accepted by the great and the good, who dismissed him as a mere peasant. Continue reading