A Mouse Guard Story: Cale

Part 1:

(You will have to forgive me for any bad grammer. I am not the best writer by any means. Usually I have my wife edit my writing before I post anything of substance on a forum. I just wrote the very beginning of this story up at 1 am this morning. It is rough, just thought I would share. Please leave helpful and positive feedback.)

A new day beat upon Lockhaven’s stain glass windows. The flickering rays danced along the stone ground in the streets of the fortress, mice bustled throughout the city doing their early morning tasks. The weather watcher could be heard calling out warnings of rain to the unknowing mice below. So much trust was placed on each and every duty of the guard mice and so much trust was placed on the guard mice as a whole by the entire species of mice. The doors to the mighty city flung open now and again to let enter and exit various working mice. Gathers sized their basket straps and scuttled out the doors. Patrols sheathed their weapons and did their individual preparation rituals before heading out to serve their fellow mouse brothers and sisters.

All was up and going throughout the well-oiled machine of Lockaven. One would hardly notice a small mouse by the name of Cale making his way around the different stores and market places. He was on a mission of great importance to deliver supplies of wood and nails to Avery the carpenter. Cale was a very young mouse to be doing such things but has excelled in his schooling so much that he was given much more important tasks in the early part of the day. Not to say he avoided his schoolwork, just temporarily relieved of his schooling to help the greater effort.

You see the more promising mice are given a chance to become known among the specialty mice at a very early age. Cale was only thirteen and close to beginning his Tenderpaw training with the guard. He was still very small but much more capable than most of his fellow mice students. His fur was a light brown and he had very respectable ears for a mouse of his stature.

He could be found very often watching the warrior Guard mice in the barracks training with all sorts of weapons. Cale would dance in the shadows with fake enemies swinging a wooden sword in every direction. He could see himself fighting a great war along side the Guard. His own shadow against a stonewall was a secret resemblance of his future self… it stretched and widened behind him displaying a very tall and stoic figure. So unaware of his glorious future Cale was, so unaware in-fact that he would spend his life time finding out.

This story takes us to Cale’s younger years, to one particular day where Cale began his first real adventure.

“Watch where you are going with that! You nearly took my head off!” Shouted an old smithy mouse as Cale swung his pile of lumber swiftly around a tight corner.

“Apologies Sir! Please, I am in a great hurry.” Blubbered Cale.

Many mice were about their business and it made it very hard for Cale to get around at his short height.

“Move move! Out of the way!” Proclaimed the now flustered mouse that seemed very intent on arriving where he needed to be in a more than timely manner.

“Don’t you see? I have an important mission to deliver much needed goods to my master Avery!”

“Oh old Avery can wait plenty!” Said a slightly annoyed elder female mouse.

“Heavens No!” Said Cale, “Avery is a very impatient mouse and I have been late twice this week already. If I were late again he said that it would be the end of my morning training.”

Finally the young mouse found himself outside Avery’s door.

*knock *Knock *KNOCK!

“Blasted youngling! If you could use a hammer as well as you knock on my door you would have no need for an old carpenter like myself.” Avery got up from his old rocking chair and stumbled for his gnarled cane. “I will be right there! Just stop it with the confounded knocking and blubbering.”

“But Avery, the baker’s pet beetle is staring at me funny!” Cale had dropped his supplies and was now flat against the door with his back against it.

“Rubbish! That beetle knows better than to be hanging out my front door! If I were to catch him wandering arou…” Before he could finish his sentence the door swung open and in came crashing poor little Cale… toppling over on his back squirreling around like a dieing spider.

“Shoo! Shoo!” Said Avery while waving and jabbing his cane at the nasty beetle. “Why must he keep that thing? Always a pain… Now where is that mouse that I saw come crashing through my door?”

“Sorry sir!” Up jumped Cale to his most upright stature and giving his most proper salute.

‘Enough of that nonsense! I may live in Lockhaven, but by no means am I a member of the guard… blasted child… so much to learn…” Mumbled the old mouse as he hobbled his way over to his bench.

“Avery, why do you dislike the guard so much while living in the very city they dwell?” Cale asked while picking up his supplies and tools that were piled in a heap.

“I won’t speak of it!” He promptly replied.

“Very well…” sighed Cale. “What is our task today?”

“Ah, yes… today we have a very special task, one I think you will enjoy.” Avery said with kind smile. One Cale had not seen before. “Today we get to venture out and check the city peremiter. There has been some repairs to the exterior of Lockhaven and the matriarch desires I look over the job they have done.”

“You mean we get to go outside the city?” Cale asked… seemingly nervous about this venture. “I am not sure if my father would permit such a venture.”

“For goodness sake child you are almost old enough to begin your tenderpaw training. Soon you will be asked to complete tasks outside the city daily. Do you really want to enter your two seasons of training having never been outside the city walls?”

“I suppose not, you are right! When do we leave? What should I bring? Is there anything I should know?”

“Enough with the questions! If I had to answer all of your questions we would never make it back in the city before the rain.” Clamored Avery as he packed a small pack full of assorted foods and drinks.

It would be a glorious adventure for young Cale… one he has not experienced before.

Hi Harvey,
Is this a write up of your game?


Hey Luke!

Um, not yet. I have been running some of the sample missions. This so far is just something from my 2 in the morning imagination. I hope to make a story of it one day. You will have to excuse some of the typos… i just read through it this morning and…yeah, you know how that goes.


A Mouse Guard Story: Cale

The young mouse gathered what small supplies he would need for the early part of the day. He took a bit of food, his sling of water and his trusted wooden sword. What else would a mouse need for an adventure of great importance?

Before long Cale heard Avery calling from the back of his workshop, “Come here child!”

Cale scuttled in as quickly as he could run on all fours.

“Stop that non-sense! You are no ordinary mouse that must walk on the ground like a beast!” Spouted Avery as he wagged his cane at Cale bopping him on the head a time or two.

“Yes sir…” Cale bashfully replied.

“Anyway… I have something for you. You have been serving me for almost a year now and I feel that you deserve a special gift. It may be too big for you now, but in time you will grow into it. Our little expedition may just be for one purpose, no reason we can’t have a little fun eh?” Avery said while smiling in a very child like way.

He walked over to the back of his shop and threw a dusty cloak off of what appeared to be an old took box. At first glace it looked to be a hundred years old and on it’s way out. Cale stepped a little closer and could see through the rusted latches and bindings that it was a very peculiar box that held treasures beyond his comprehension.

It creaked and snapped… loud noises of stretching metal and hinges cracking on rust made his ears tingle with excitement. The lid finally swung up and crashed against the wall. Inside there was no dust of any kind everything inside was nicely wrapped in cloth and leathers.

Avery lifted out a strange looking object and then promptly closed the lid. He laid it down on his workbench, pushing aside many unwanted blueprints and tools. As he was opening it Caleb could be seen on the other side of the table looking as far up as he could. He was on the tip of his toes and hanging off the edge of the table by his fingers. His little nose could be seen sniffing around and his eye we’re dancing about trying to see what this could be.

“For heavens sake boy! Pull up a chair. Be civilized!”

Cale did just this. He pulled up a wooden workbench and sat down next to Avery. Just as he did Avery revealed a long wooden bow with arrows. It looked as thought it had been crafted ages and ages ago. Cale had never seen one like it; it must have been used by the matriarch’s personal guard… or perhaps by the matriarch herself.

“Nothing to say boy? For being so full of words the rest of the time you seem quite speechless.” Avery asked.

Looking to gather himself Cale just sputtered out the first words that came to his mouth… “What is it?” He asked, knowing full well what it was but he had no idea the importance of this particular weapon.

“What do you mean? What is it? Well obviously it is a well crafted bow!” One that was held by a mouse of great stature, a young mouse that was once very much like yourself.” As Avery finished this sentence he looked away and set the bow down on the table. He stumbled over to his fireplace mantel and leaned against it in such away that seemed very distressed. “Anyway, I want you have it. You can keep it hear when we are not together, I fear your parents would not appreciate such a unique gift at your early age. I want you to take it with us today on our hike, maybe we can find us a termite or two.”

This bow obviously meant a lot to Avery and for him to give it away was a very bold move on his part. Cale did not know how to react to such a thing so he just did what his mother would have hounded him to do. “Thank you sir, it is very nice.”

“Hmm, yes… it is quite nice indeed.” Avery replied.
They gathered up their things in small bags and headed down the street. As they approached the outer city doors Cale could see lines of mice waiting to get out. Guard members were checking each and every mouse to make sure they weren’t up to anything funny. Although the real funny thing was that as we came close to the guards tending to the front of the line it seemed very okay that we we’re not partaking in this line.

Avery lifted his hand to the guards in a jester of kindness.

“Master Avery!” The guards said all at once and then promptly bowed very low. “It is an honor sir.”

“Bah! You all know better than this, do you not have the time to make sure our papers to leave the city are valid?” Avery asked while pulling a small parchment out of his pocket that was stamped by the matriarch herself.

“No need sir!” The guards replied far before Avery could even reach into his pocket.

“Open the doors!” The captain of the guards shouted.

At his signal mice all over began scuttling around pulling ropes and turning wheels. The door began to crack open and all the mice in the area gazed on as a great light broke the plane between the doors and shot down from the top to the bottom like a mighty burst of flame. The sounds of wooden hinges and wheels turning made music that was only known to the mice of Lockhaven. Ropes and shackles came tight like symbols and violins, the sound was enchanting and Cale’s head bobbed up and down and side to side trying to track exactly what it took to open doors this great. He was far from figuring it out when Avery turned around to grab Cale and pull him out of amazement. Avery’s silhouette could be made out of the gleaming light on either side of him. Cale covered his face to keep from seemingly becoming blind from the brightness of day.

“Come now boy! By my side, today you begin something you will soon become very use to.” Avery said in a calming voice, reflecting himself on these moments he had at an early age.

The look of wonder on Cale’s face was encouraging to Avery in his age. At least in his later years he got to experience such a precious moment with a small mouse that would soon become such a great mouse. Indeed greatness awaited him, the only one that knew it was old Avery… in years to come all would know.

This is the last portion of Cale’s time before he enlisted as a tenderpaw… I had all of my friends that are partaking in our adventure write a small segment about their mouse’s history. Something to deepen their personality and make them more attached to their characters. I have found in any RPG it helps to invest time in character development… nothing is worse than playing an RPG with someone that could care less what happens to the group because they are much less involved.

Cale had never seen the outside before. He had spent his entire life within the walls of Lock haven, left to gaze only out from the windows that looked to a very limited distance. His true heart’s desire was to be out in the open world, daring to challenge the beasts of the wild and explore places un-named.

“Where do we go now sir?” Cale asked while running ahead of his master.

Avery hobbled along at a slow rate, not trying to keep up with his younger mouse companion. He would watch Cale run off ahead of him on all fours exploring the great outdoors and all it’s wonders.

“Not too far now young one!” Avery proclaimed before he made it too far down the trail. “You could be swept up by a bird of pray or any other beast of nature in an instant. I am afraid I would have to move away from Lockhaven, your mother would make quicker work of me than a hungry owl.”

At hearing this Cale coward under some leaves that had fallen on the ground from the season’s change.

Avery walked over to the pile of leaves and lifted them up to reveal the now shaking mouse. “Do not fear it is fine to come out. Old Avery will not let anything get you today… soon though you will know how to fend for yourself in this wilderness that we survive in.” A smile started to form on Avery’s face and he beckoned Cale to come out.

“Will I learn to fire my bow today Avery?”

“Why yes, as soon as I have done my work for the matriarch. She is indeed far less forgiving than an old owl herself.” Avery said while viewing the outside of the city.

Not much could be seen of it except the mighty doors and a few windows here and there. Cale wondered if there were any young mice watching them from the upper levels of Lockhaven. Many things passed though Cale’s eyes and into his memory from that day. There were lots to remember as Avery showed him around the city and taught him about the various plants and wild life in the surrounding area of Lockhaven.

Avery showed Cale how to knock an arrow into his bow, and how to aim it at a target. He caught on very quickly, far more so than even Avery imagined. By the end of the day he was firing arrows with ease at just about any target/

“This could get you into more trouble than you could possibly imagine. Once the guard discovers your talent Cale… there will be no looking back. I want you to remember this day and how simple things were. Much of your life will change from this moment; you will no longer be satisfied with living indoors… I know that I never was.” Avery was now pondering much of his life looking into the sky that was now darkening into a very unpleasant grey. “It seems that the weather watchers were correct about rain, they often aren’t…” Avery mumbled to himself while loosing his train of thought.

“Back to the city young one. We must get inside before the rain gets heavy.” Avery said while pushing Cale down the trail now trying to keep him focused on returning to Lockhaven.

The rain started to pour down on them right outside the city. Cale had never seen or felt rain before, it was so new to him…nothing seemed to be actually happening. Just outside the cover of the city he stopped and looked up into the sky as the rain fell. He could make out drops falling from the clouds into his face. Everything seemed so unnatural to him… he has only heard the sound of rain on windows and so often wished he cold feel it dance upon his fur. Now he was living this dream, such a small dream but one of great depth and meaning. Cale had a destiny and in this moment he saw a great future for himself and what he would accomplish, mice depended on him and he depended on others to teach him what it meant to be great.

The now filled with purpose mouse was about to become a warrior but needed a few more seasons to become what he would soon be in the service of the matriarch.

“Inside now! Your mother will never forgive me if you come home soaking wet smelling of the wilderness. Now come on child!” Yelled Avery, knowing full well the mouse he had created that day. This is the day that will determine Cale’s future, one that will be in his heart forever.