Ren wiped the sweat from his face and looked at the mountain road before him. So far, he thought to himself. Too far. He had been on this road for three days and in all that time he had yet to meet anyone. He examined the path and it was easy to see that grass had begun to reclaim part of the roadway. Oh, well. Not going to get there standing here, he mused.
He had left home a year before, and tried his hand at various occupations. His slender build, however, didn’t really suit the labouring jobs he tried at first. He then landed a position in a tavern. The hours were long, but he enjoyed the work. He in fact became a rather skilled barman. This too was short-lived, a fire in the wee hours had destroyed not only his place of employment, but nearly killed him as well.
As he took to the road again he began to hum to himself. Soon, he was belting out some of the songs of heroism he had heard in the tavern. One particular tune that he particularly liked had several lines that he didn’t understand. Despite this, there was something about the words that lifted his spirit and made him feel invincible.
He got caught up in the song and let his travel become automatic. Because of this he failed to notice the bugbear at the mouth of a grotto he was passing until her was nearly on top of it. When he did see it he was shocked to see the creature transfixed at his voice. He tried to decide whether he should flee or to proceed. Go on, he thought to himself. He took a few more steps and continued to sing. It was then that he got to the mysterious words. As he rang them out, the beast covered its ears and fled into the cave.
Surprised at his luck, but not wanting to take any chances, Ren repeated the same verse for the next thirty minutes. Then hoarse and a bit shaken he finally rested. “I have to find out what that song is about,” he said to himself.