Year 8 day 252

How do these northerners manage to preserve fur so it remains supple and wearable? And warm?

Several days ago I found the leopard skin the People had once adorned me with, which at the time I had found unbearably hot. That heat was what I craved for exploring the northern continent, especially now that the northern solstice is approaching, but the hide was far stiffer than the tanned skins the People use for clothing.

I asked Rainbow if there was any way of softening the furred hide.

“Why?” she asked. It has become one of her favorite words, and one I encourage. So I explained – or tried to – that the northern continent I was exploring was very cold, so cold that there was snow on the ground in places, and that I needed warmer clothing.

The idea was totally beyond her. The coldest she could imagine was a cool night, perhaps cool enough that several of the People would snuggle together to share warmth. Clothes, to her mind, are for adornment and occasionally for protection from the sun, not for warmth. Why would anyone want to leave the fur on hides, except for occasional festival adornment? In preparing hides for clothing was not the first step to remove all flesh and hair, so that only the skin remained?

Were the furs worn by the northern hunters as stiff as my leopard skin?

Today I found proof that they are not.

I have been spying on the hunters when I find them, but keeping out of sight. Today, however, I found where one of the hunters, probably too old to dodge his prey, had been killed instead of killing. A pack of wolves was feasting on his remains, but I used the warnoff to drive them away long enough that I could examine the body.

Physically, I found nothing to contradict my earlier impressions. But the furs he wore, however crudely tailored, were as soft as my loincloth.

He had no further use for them, I told myself, and took them to show Rainbow that hides could indeed retain the fur and still be flexible. But I made sure not to teleport back any of the living creatures that infested them. Fleas and lice I do not need!

Jarn’s Journal is part of the remote back story of the Jarnian Confederation, in which most of my science fiction is set. Jarn is a human-like alien who was stranded in Africa some 125,000 years ago and has contacted some of our remote ancestors. He is currently trying to explore Europe, and since he is starting his years on the northward equinox it’s getting cold there. The journal to date is on my author site.