|In two or three sentences, write about the happiest moment you've experienced in the past two days.
Create a story, poem, or artwork based on the circumstances, experiences, or feelings associated with that moment.
My happiest moment was discovering that--after a winter of record-low snowfall--we were quite unexpectedly getting a March snowstorm significant enough to earn my husband and me a day off from work. I enjoyed the opportunity to stay home and read and work on fannish projects (and we also had a massive tray of nachos for lunch!). It was a day that turned out, quite unexpectedly, far better than any Monday has the right to be.
Pengolodh drew himself from sleep with the same deliberate force as one dislodges his foot from a mud puddle while taking care not to lose his boot. It felt like someone had lodged an anvil between his ears. He doubted his ability to lift his head from the pillow. But he must--
His room was done in charcoals, for the Sun was just rising from her own slumbers in Vai. Downstairs, a door snicked shut; his father's friends shared Sailaheru's views about the virtues of rising early. Pengolodh heard the front gate squeak open, then shut. Any moment now, his mother would lightly roll her knuckles across his door. "Pengolodh," she would call gently. "It is time--"
The bedroom changed from charcoals to a gray wash. Pengolodh blinked. It was strange; too early for such prolific light. It should not be so light for a half-hour at least. And where was his mother? Wincing, he lifted his head from the pillow, careful that he should not dislodge the anvil and send it sliding into the backs of his eyes, and propped himself up on his elbows.
It was white outside, all white. He had seen snow before, of course, but never so deep that the Elves on the road had to lift their knees to comical heights to trudge through it. They looked like shorebirds, picking their ways among the wetlands, looking for crabs. They wore the same fussy, fastidious expressions. He would have dared a laugh but feared that it might unsettle the anvil.
Having accomplished lifting his head from the pillow, he decided he might as well use the momentum and swing his feet to the floor. It was best that his parents not suspect how late he'd been studying anyway, using one of the Valinorean lamps to read his books under the blankets. His mother came in once, with a candle, and he had to flop his body upon the lamp to hide the light, and he feared he'd broken the spine of the book in doing so as well. But that was the least of his concerns today.
Even with thick socks on his feet, the floorboards were achingly cold. The usual smell of breakfast cooking did not greet him and made the house feel colder. His father would be proud, he hoped, of his son presenting himself voluntarily on exam day without wringing more time with his books from the final minutes before he had to depart for the hall. Most--nearly all--did that. In truth, Pengolodh did not think his head could hold much more, not with that anvil balanced there between his ears. The kitchen was dark--he wondered where the cook had gone, or rather, why she had declined to show up at all (for surely she knew that this was his exam day)--so he proceeded into the front room, where the firelight made him wince, he hoped imperceptibly. His mother was grinding pigments with a small mortal and pestle, and his father was writing in one of his books, dipping his quill into a bottle of ink balanced on the arm of his chair. Neither, Pengolodh noticed, had yet laced on their shoes.
"It seems you are in luck," said Sailaheru, without looking up from or slowing in his writing. "A skylight broke in the hall from the weight of the snow, and your master has most generously decided that you should not sit upon a pile of snow to do your recitation. Your exam has been postponed until tomorrow."
Pengolodh had read the original works of Rúmil, had seen paintings done by the finest hands in Valinor, had even once--though his father did not know this--sneaked a look at flames wrought in crimson and gold by the adept hand of Fëanáro, but nothing, he thought, nothing compared in beauty to the sight of the Sun rising in the cozy square of his bedroom window, watched from within a warm wrapping of quilts.
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