Inhabitants of Leadhill, in the Northern Mountains, were left terrified last Thursday after a coach was attacked shortly after leaving the Grasshopper Inn. Lord and Lady Lucre were robbed of a considerable amount of jewellery as well as gold, silver and a valuable pocket watch. Their attackers were described as female and each wearing a distinctive red shawl. It was unfortunate that Lord and Lady Lucre were robbed on Thursday as they were carrying an unusually large amount of money, having just collected the rent from their estate.
Lord Lucre asked any member of the public with information as the whereabouts of the Red Shawl Gang to come forward.
It was so good to hear from you. Geffrin sounds a terrible place. Fancy having bandits coming right into the centre of town and right under the noses of the Royal Guard? I don’t think the Flaxfield Militia would let the Red Shawl Gang come here. Please be careful and stay out of trouble. I couldn’t bear it if anything happened to you.
It’s all very quiet now that you and Kitty have gone away. Kitty came home last Saturday, but she didn’t finish work until nine and then she had to walk all the way home. She doesn’t know if she’ll do it again because it was so horrible walking in the dark. One of her brothers went to fetch her, or she couldn’t have done it at all. It was midnight before she got home and she had to walk back by six in the evening on Sunday, which meant she hardly got any time at home at all. I went down to see her and she looked so tired. She said she was all right but her eyes hurt from all the fine embroidery she’s been doing on a dress for Lady Twizzle. It sounds a lot more fun bashing iron that sewing your eyes out all day. I’m glad you’re getting plenty to eat. Kitty was looking so thin that my mum gave her a whole cheese to take back with her.
Have you got to Geffrin Tusk’s training ground yet? Boris is doing very well with the football you gave him – too well at times. Yesterday he kicked it so hard it went up into the air and landed in the mixing bowl which would have been all right if it hadn’t been full of flour. The flour went everywhere: all over the floor, all over me and all over Boris. Boris shook his coat and flour flew everywhere. He thought this was hilarious and started blowing more of it about with his trunk. It was like being caught in a wild indoor snowstorm. In the end I had to bribe him with a bowl of raspberries to keep still long enough for me to clear the mess up. I only just managed before mum came back from helping dad fix that bit of wall round the bottom field that came down in the flood.
Will Mr and Mrs Nicks let you come home for the harvest? Kitty said she’s going to be sent home for two weeks to help her family.
Your affectionate friend,
I really miss you all. Geffrin is OK if you like a small town full of people who think you’re a thief just because all your clothes are a bit dusty. I can’t help my clothes getting dusty because I have to sleep near the forge, which is good because it’s warm but everything gets covered in ash from the fire. At least I get loads to eat. Mrs Nicks says I have to keep my strength up or I’ll never be a blacksmith. I spend most of my time working the bellows, but Mr Nicks has started to teach me how to bash the iron. My muscles are already getting so big I’ll have to get a new shirt or I’ll burst my sleeves!
I get Sunday afternoon off and I was hoping to go to the Geffrin Tusk’s training ground and ask for some tips on how training Boris, but nobody can get to see anyone since the kidnapping. Did you hear about the kidnapping? or rather mammothnapping? The Royal Guard were crawling all over the place for two weeks! One of them kept coming over to the forge and giving me suspicious looks. He said people from the Southern Mountains like me were practically Gosks. It’s a good job I wasn’t practising with the hammer because I might have socked him one and then where would I be?
Please write soon and tell me how everyone is and especially how Boris is getting on.
Thunder, the kidnapped mammoth was found safe and well yesterday in Rumble Bridge. He had been tied to the Steam Ferry ticket office on the quayside overnight with a note attached to his coat claiming to be from the Red Shawl Gang itself . The note stated that the Red Shawl Gang had nothing to do with Thunder’s kidnapping and that they would never harm a mammoth. They had tracked down the true perpetrators of this crime, something the Royal Guard had been unable to do, and dealt with them themselves. Surprisingly nobody in Rumble Bridge saw Thunder’s arrival or noticed a gang of red shawl wearing females ride through the village last night. Meanwhile three local men have been reported missing and three fresh mounds of soil have been spotted next to a nearby crossroads.