Though the night was still at hand, the Goldsmith woke before mornings welcome. For a moment he had to find his bearings, and set his feet on the floor of the small cottage. He felt the fatigue of the former day reminding him of why he came.
As if to reassure himself, he reached into his pocket and pulled out his long cherished gem his Grandfather had lovingly passed down to him. He felt it in his hand, as he had many times, every caress a familiar shape. Not a man-made gem, this one, but as fine as you could find anywhere. It’s clarity, the cut of rarity and a carat any would covet. He carefully slipped it back into the case buried into his pocket, and rubbed his forehead, as if to wake up.
He found his way to the lamp, set in the light and began to go over his maps once again. Too dark to venture out for a source of coffee, he broke off a piece of the now hardened bread. A rooster crowed in the distance and he felt a sigh as the evenings dark was replaced with the emerging light.
Despite his earlier encounters with the locals, he looked forward to his walk to the near mine. Would it be full of ‘Old Nick’ as they chided. He had to know.