"Next month", Dirk grinned. "I've got it planned. Going to challenge someone I know I can beat. It's a sure thing."
"Are you really that sure of beating this person?"
Dirk grinned, "I hope so. I can use a change of life style. Kind of boring making beer all month except when I'm getting beat up. Hey, try some of this hot stuff Rafe and I cooked up. It's like a spiced grog." He handed Tobal a wooden bowl full of a hot liquid with floating things in it.
Tobal suspiciously sipped it, "That's really good! I think I'll have more when I finish this beer. It's warm too! Just what I need right now. Where's Rafe hanging out? I need to ask him something."
"He's in the brew house getting another batch of grog ready."
"Thanks, I'll go check on him."
"There you are!", he called as he stepped inside the warm log building that served as a brewery. Rafe looked like a mad scientist hunched over a steaming bucket of grog he was stirring vigourously. He smiled as he looked up.
"Tobal!, what brings you here? Are we out of grog? Did Dirk send you?"
"Not really", he said. "I'm just trying to get together a meeting between you, Ellen, Crow and myself tonight after circle. I think it's important and want to get it over with before Crow leaves on his solo. That makes tonight the best time."
"I can see that", Rafe nodded. "Sure, I'll be there. Where are we meeting anyway? It's cold out there."
"You getting soft in your old age?", Tobal joked. "You just keep lots of that grog on hand. I was thinking of meeting out by the central fire like we did last time."
Rafe sighed, "Ok, right after circle then. Did you see Dirk made his fifth chevron?"
"Already congratulated him, how about you?"
"Maybe next time", Rafe said. "The fights are getting more even. I can't wait till you get to be a Journeyman and get your butt whipped all the time." He chuckled.
"Well I've got to leave and get hold of Ellen", he turned toward the door.
"Sure, changing the subject", Rafe laughed as Tobal went out.
It was mid afternoon and he arranged with both Crow and Ellen to meet immediately after circle by the central fire. Ellen had changed into her robe and was getting ready for circle. She was one of the few non-ritual team members that was going to be wearing a robe. It was so cold most of the others including Tobal were wearing their furs to circle. He asked her about it.
"Oh, I'll be alright", she laughed. "I'll be next to the fire and can keep warm there."
"Well, I'll have some extra blankets or furs by me if you get cold", he told her.
"Thanks Tobal, but I won't need them really. Especially tonight since I'm so keyed up."
"I'm training to be High Priestess of the Journeyman Circle. It is quite different than this one. Misty will keep doing this one for awhile yet."
"That's great", he grinned. "You will be High Priestess when I become Journeyman.