Small paws hold a canister as smoke billows forth, slowly creeping through the air and calming the buzzing that fills the quiet. Once the fuzzy insects were calmed, those same paws would dip into their hives, drawing out glistening liquid gold and pieces of delicate comb that would later be an afternoon snack. With each dip into the trunk of an old tree, the small barrel the Mauskin
carried became heavier and heavier, the warm honey filling it to the top.
Once back in the village, this barrel of liquid and comb would be separated and filtered, readied to pour into barrels and jars to be shared with all who wished. Some would be taken to the Halfling
village a day's journey away to be traded for other goods, the liquid gold of the tree becoming solid gold coins in the hand. There was something about the honey of the Little Greenwood
that was different than that elsewhere in the world, its sweetness a treat to the taste buds, its scent an experience of its own.
While the Elven Forest
had its clover honey, the honey made by the Greenwood Bumbles
was far more famous, a delicacy that people would pay a pretty penny to have. The Mauskin
saw it as nothing more than their reward for protecting the large bees and tending to their flower fields, a nice snack best had on warm bread. It wasn't until their entrance into the wider world that this sweet snack became a currency of its own, something that the Mauskin
could use to gain other necessities that could not be made by their own paws.
Greenwood Honey is produced by the large bees of the Little Greenwood
known as the Greenwood Bumbles
. These bees pollinate the extremely large flowers that grow in the northern areas of the forest, most specifically the Giant Camellia
. The pollen from these flowers gives the filtered honey a rich amber color and a sweet scent, almost similar to the scent of rose petals.
The honey is gathered from the wild hives, often found in hollow trees, and stored in small wooden barrels until it can be separated from the comb and any other things that might be in it. Small amounts of the honey are poured out of the barrels onto a series of porous cloth where the honey is forced through the cloth while larger particles are trapped in the various layers of fabric.
Once the honey is clear of debris, it is stored in clean barrels or jars depending on where it is going. Honey that is to stay within Mauskin
villages will be kept in barrels due to how quickly it will be used. Honey that is being traded elsewhere will be stored in barrels until it can be taken to one of the larger ports of the area to be preserved through Glass Canning
. The Halflings
helped adopt the same process that was used to preserve Faefish
so that the honey can be shared across the world.
While Greenwood Honey is most commonly consumed in the Little Greenwood
, it is possible to find it in marketplaces throughout Vóreios
and parts of the Zóni
. Most often, Mauskin
utilize the honey as a natural sweetener used in baking or in drinks such as Dewdrop Tea
. A small single-liter barrel of honey may last these people a week or less as it is used so frequently in their daily lives.
The largest importer of Greenwood Honey is the Human Empire
to the north. There, the honey is a key ingredient in various alcoholic beverages produced throughout the kingdom. Another common importer of the honey is the Fearsome Maw
as it is often paired with the local delicacy of Dragon Buns