She was, as far as I could tell, a Vätte, a female spirit who had migrated from Sweden. Her Swedish was old, far older than my own, and it took me some time to understand everything she was telling me. She spoke to me with the patience of a loving parent speaking to a particularly foolish child. Her cat, or whatever he was, cared for me not at all.
Her name, she informed me, was Lucy, although it was apt to change depending upon her mood. The cat was called Tom, and this was accompanied by a great deal of purring upon the part of the feline. When I asked what she wanted, she told me she only wanted company. In her travels, Lucy had learned of a member of the Blood clan who still lived, and since she had always enjoyed dealings with my kin, she thought she might enjoy mine as well.
We had an excellent time, and Lucy drank most of my good brandy, all my rum, and two of my finest kegs of beer.
It was well worth the experience. Rarely have I enjoyed the company of a spirit so much as I did Lucy’s. When she and Tom left, I was saddened to see them go, and I told them as much.
Lucy patted me on the cheek, smiled, and said, “You’re a good boy, if a bit slow. Keep the guns oiled, Duncan Blood, and always loaded.”
To this day, it is advice I live by.
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