I am seventeen years old Scalentine and have got my first proper job as a caravan guard on the silk road, crossing into the Lithan Empire at the Utanichik border. I will be away for at least three moons.
I have a girlfriend and I am worried that while I am away this bloke who has been sniffing around will move in on her. Also is it all right for me to get some Experience while I am a guard? Because girls like guards at least that’s what my girlfriend says and I think I should have some Experience. And what if it’s not with girls, or boys, because you hear things and I’m curious though I’m not weird or anything.
Congratulations on the job.
The important thing is that you and your girlfriend agree what’s allowed and you’re honest. And by ‘agree what’s allowed,’ I don’t mean ‘say you’ll see other people but get furious if the other person actually does.’ Remember, if it’s all right for you to get some experience, it’s all right for your girlfriend to get some, too.
However unless you want it to be the Becoming a Parent or Getting Something Nasty Experience, both of you should go to the alchemist in Little Copper Row, now.
Check what the rules about ‘Experience’ are for your particular caravan, and stick to them; otherwise you could end up dumped at some place barely big enough to have a name and with your name on a don’t-hire list. If ‘experience’ is allowed, be sensible, be polite, and make sure that your advances will be welcome. Not just tolerated, welcome. And try not to offend anyone’s gods, ancestors, relatives, or personal taste.
If by ‘other sorts of experience’ you mean pack animals – if it’s smaller than you, that’s cruel, so don’t. If it’s bigger than you, it’s your risk if it objects, mate. However if it’s backing towards you wiggling its bum and looking eager, is it a Dosanidi packbeast – soppy-looking things with greenish fur and wedge-shaped heads? If it is, definitely don’t. Let’s just say they’re like a bad investment, you might not get back everything you put in.
Stay alert, don’t drink when it’s your watch, try not to boast about your great deeds to people with much more experience than you, and don’t believe all the stories the other guards will tell you – especially the ones about the Push Lake or the Singing Weasels. And bring your girlfriend back something nice.
Confused: You’re going to have to send me a diagram of what you mean, because now I’m confused.
Oops: There is a wizard in Necktwist Alley who will remove that for a reasonable fee. Learn to spell your beloved’s name right next time.
Bouncy: That is banned under at least 16 sections of Lithan Empire law. We can fit you in on Stoneday, at 3.