The portly man looked down on Eoin pityingly. “I’m sorry, hon. Thank you for helping when you’ve got other littles to look after. May I?” he pointed to the children. Eoin glanced between the man and the twins, uneasy. The master made his way to the children, picking them both up, one in each arm. The children stared up at the big man, fixated with his beard. “Aren’t you two just the most adorable things. Yes, you are. You’d get along with my little Rose. Perfect little playmates for her. Yes, sirs. She’s just about your age, though Hannah would murder me, yes she would if you stayed on,” he cooed. The children grinned big at his baby talk, their first teeth showing. The assistant dug into Eoin’s rib, quietly muttering to him, “Robin’s a bit soft on kids, got ten of his own at home. Bless Saint Nicholas, they’ve all survived. His wife’s threatened to beat him if she has any more.”
“I heard that Mr. Townsend!” Robin walked back to Eoin and Mr. Townsend. “You were meant to, Mr. Arden,” the man smiled before pulling his hand into his chest, mewling at the pain. Eoin dug out a packet of white powder and looked around for a water bucket. He found one at the edge of the building. Filling up the ladle, he brought it back to the assistant and poured the powder into the water and offered it to the man.
“What’s that?” the master asked, curious. Eoin looked up at the master and opened his mouth to respond and realized once again that he could not speak. He grimaced, annoyed at his useless situation. It was a simple powder from white willow, meadowsweet, and black elder. It would help bring down the swelling that would start from the wound and keep a fever at bay, hopefully.
“Give it here, woman,” the assistant motioned, ignoring the master’s question. “I’d take a mallet to the head right now to not feel my hand,” he gulped the liquid down, wincing at the bitter after taste. “Willow, sir. It’s just gonna help the swelling,” he guessed, having had his fair bit of the inflammation reducer in his lifetime.
“All right, William, let’s get you inside. I’ll send Peter out for a proper doc to help patch that up,” the master handed Eoin back the twins. The twins cried, reaching out for the big man, wanting him to pick them up again. The man chuckled as he took William’s weight.
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