The woman stared up at Jessica and although the gentle giantess was smiling down at her she could feel wave after wave of terror overcome her body. She was far more terrified of the giantess looking down at her than she ever was of the bear that had just tried to kill her. She had never seen anyone like Jessica ever in her life and the first thing that came into her mind was not a saviour but a monster.
Almost instantly the woman began to run away from Jessica and despite the gentle giantess's protest the woman continued to run and Jessica didn't want to go after her. This was far from the first time that she had this reaction and it wasn't going to be the last. She gave out a small sigh as she watched the woman continue to run. She had intended to scare the bear but never the woman.
"I don't know why I bother sometimes," said Jessica with some depression in her voice. She sat down for the moment of the clear ground in front of her. She didn't want to admit just how much it hurt her the way that people reacted to her. "I try and help people wherever I can and they still call me a monster." She leaned her chin into her hand. "Sometimes I think that I should abandon them to their fate."
"Oh come on Jessica don't feel like that," replied Tucker rubbing his hand against the warm cheek of his best friend. "If you had let her die I know that you would have felt a lot worse about yourself. People are just narrow-minded and they can't see the person that you are inside." He was trying to reassure her as best as he could. For the moment he thought that it was all that he was good for. "Remember what your parents said to you. It is not what's on the outside that makes someone a monster but what's on the inside. One day everyone in Angleland will know that you're a heroine and not a monster. Besides you're too damn pretty to be a monster."
"Thanks Tucker." She was able to turn her head enough to give him a little kiss. It was not a romantic kiss but one of friendship. "You don't know how much that means to me." She gave him a little smile even though there was a tear rolling down her cheek.
"Now shall we continue on or will I have to fly on the back of a dragon?" He had sometimes fantasied about riding a dragon but in truth that was impossible. Many dragons were too dangerous to fly and the ones that weren't were too small to ride.
"Sure thing little guy." Slowly Jessica rose back up to her feet. Normally after being called a monster like this she would instinctively shrink to her smallest size so that she didn't seem to be as much of a threat. Since they still had a quest to continue on with they couldn't shrink herself. "As long as I have you by my side I feel like I can withstand anything. You're a living, breathing reminder that not all people are bad."
"Well I do have my moments."
This caused Jessica to laugh a little and for the moment she forgot about what had upset her in the first place. It was even told in Angleland that laughter was the best remedy to almost any sickness. This was one way that Tucker made himself feel a little more useful in this quest. He planned to show the entire land his soon to be greatness. He could see himself fighting foes twice his size and bringing them down to their knees. He wondered if he would truly have the opportunity to do this or if like with the bear Jessica would just deal with any opponent that they came across.
It was not until the third day of their quest until they saw Lake Town itself over the horizon. The last couple of days had been relatively uneventful although Tucker had tested his skills with Juggernaut when it came to dealing with a wolf. Jessica had allowed him to fend the wolf off himself but she was watching over him ready to intervene if he began to get into trouble. In his mind it was nice to know that she was there to help him if he needed it but it also made him feel that he had a safety net and when it came to swordplay it did more damage than good. Since he knew that he had someone watching over him he didn't need to be as careful as he should.
One thing that was between the pair and Lake Town was the enormous lake itself in which the town had gotten its name from. It was simply called Lake Rock and was easily the largest lake in Angleland. It was the source of a few different myths and legends over the centuries and the most popular was that there was some kind of monster living in the lake even though there had been no official sittings of this so called creature. Lake Town itself was on the far end of Lake Rock and it would only take a short time for Jessica to walk to the town at her full height. However they had already decided that about two or three miles outside of town Jessica would shrink in size and they would travel the rest of the way like that. It was so that there was less chance of their being panic in the town when they arrived. It had happened to her a couple of times and Jessica didn't want to repeat it again. She wanted to seem as normal as possible.
But rather than stepping into town straight away Jessica instead began to step towards Lake Rock itself. Tucker was still sitting on her shoulder and for the moment he had no idea what she was doing, to his knowledge they were going straight to Lake Town so that they could rest up before finding their way to the first trial. He could hear Jessica humming and he had to admit that her voice was somewhat soothing.
"Jessica what are you doing?" asked Tucker as he saw Jessica stepping closer and closer to the lake bank.
"I haven't had a bath since we left Morgan and between you and me I really don't want to smell," replied Jessica with a smile. "And if you have any sense in that head of yours you'll do the same as well."
"Hey knights don't need to bathe, all we do is protect the weak and greater our skills with a blade."
"Maybe in fantasy land but even knights need to bathe on a regular basis and I'm not going to keep carrying you around if you smell." By now she had reached the banks of Lake Rock and she stopped herself from walking into the lake itself. "You can either bathe yourself or I'll bathe you instead."
Tucker couldn't say anything to try and prove his case. He knew that when it came to matters like this Jessica had a very strict policy. His best intentions were in her mind but even so he wasn't looking forward towards it. Tucker did feel Jessica unwrap her hair around him and place him on the ground. No sooner had she placed her best friend on the ground she began to undress herself.
Tucker wasn't sure whether he should be seeing Jessica undress herself as she undid the buttons on the back of her dress. Within seconds Jessica's dress dropped down to the ground revealing her naked body for all the world to see. She didn't mind Tucker looking at her naked body, there were no secrets between them and she felt perfectly comfortable allowing him to see her. He tried to avert his eyes from her body but she just looked down and smiled at him.
"It's alright Tucker," said Jessica as she stepped into the cool water after taking off her shoes. "You're my best friend and you don't have to look away. I trust you completely and it's not like you haven't seen me naked before."
With that Tucker with some reluctance uncovered his eyes so that he could see Jessica in all of her glory and he couldn't help but marvel over her body. Not only its sheer size but also its beauty. She had a slim build and her breast size seemed to suit her perfectly for her body. Her legs were long and elegant, they made up just over half of her overall height. He could see some of the tones of her muscles that she had been able to build thanks to her years of work on her family farm. He could not see her bare feet in the water but he knew that they too were elegant and their size seemed to be irrelevant. With such beautiful figures Tucker couldn't work out how anyone could think that she was a monster.
He stood there and watched as Jessica stepped further into the cool water. Without her dress she couldn't shrink herself so she was stuck had her full size. It almost seemed natural for her to be this size in his mind. The dress was almost like a cage that was keeping her true form from revealing itself. He didn't care how big or small she was, in the end she was his best friend and nothing would be able to change that.
Tucker saw Jessica look back at him when the water level was up to her hips. She had heard that the lake was a couple of hundred feet deep in places and she saw it as a great opportunity to take a swim. This was something that she wasn't able to do very often since the lakes near Morgan were much too shallow for her to swim.
Jessica leaned forwards and allowed her body to slip into the water and she began to swim out closer to the centre of the lake. Tucker could only watch as the majestic figure of his best friend disappeared below the water and he wondered what it was like to be her. A being with an incredibly powerful body and yet such a gentle soul. He rarely ever saw her get angry and it was almost like she was a goddess herself.
Below the water Jessica's vision was somewhat limited but even so she could see fish beneath the water. Most of them began to swim away as soon as they saw her and she saw some that were considered to be big but in comparison to her they were nothing more than goldfish.
In this world Jessica felt more at home, although it was greatly inconvenient for many aspects of her life she felt truly like herself when she was at her full size. She loved being large and would only shrink herself so that she could feel somewhat normal and make people a little more comfortable. If people accepted her as a giantess she would stay at her full size the vast majority of the time. Instead she had been keeping herself small so that people were not as uncomfortable to be around her. True even at her smallest size she towered everyone by at least a foot but even so it was still some way of being normal in their eyes.
Jessica even swam to the very bottom of the lake and down there she could see the wrecks of a few fishing boats that had been unfortunate enough to have sunk. She wondered if the legend of the monster of Lake Rock was true, even if it was she thought that she was big enough to deal with practically anything that came her way. She even brushed her hand next to one of the wrecks and it seemed to break up.
Despite her size even Jessica needed oxygen and what was left in her lungs was beginning to run out. She quickly swam up to the surface and her head broke out of the water and she took a deep breath. Tucker could see her from the shore and he had been getting worried about her. She had been under the water for a few minutes and he was beginning to think that she had drowned. Seeing her coming up to the surface was a great relief and seeing her come up reminded him much of a whale.
He had decided that Jessica was right that he needed to bathe as well. One by one he took off his clothing and armour. One of the last things that he took off was the holster that was holding Juggernaut. As long as he had Juggernaut by his side he didn't truly feel naked. He had heard a tale how one brave knight had entered into battle with no clothing on whatsoever and all he had was his sword. He couldn't remember why the knight didn't have his clothes but it showed that as long as a knight still had his sword he was still a knight.
When Tucker was finally naked he stepped into the water and quickly got out after he realised just how cold it was. He couldn't believe that Jessica could even stand being in water this cold. He was just about to put his clothes back on when he saw Jessica coming towards him. She was slowly walking out of the water and she smiled down at him when she saw that he was naked. She could see that his body was still dry and she was a little disappointed to see that he was about to put his clothes back on. She knew to get him clean she would have to take matters into her own hands.
"Tucker what are you doing?" asked Jessica as she was nearly at the bank. She was smiling down at him and was doing nothing to try and cover her naked body.
"That water's too bloody cold," replied Tucker as he was just about to put his clothing back on. "You might not have felt it but to me it was like ice."
"Oh come on don't be such a big baby." She bent down and picked him up before he could grab any of his clothing. This had taken him by surprise and he began to somewhat struggle, he knew that it was in vain since he knew that he couldn't escape. "The sooner you get into the water, the sooner it'll be over with. It might seem cold now but after you get in you'll see that it's not so bad."
"Hey put me down!" He was trapped in her hand and he saw her turn around and walk back into the water. "I mean it Jessica I don't want to go in the lake."
"And I'm not carrying you around if you smell. You'll have to spend the entire quest in my pocket and you won't be able to see the sunshine or feel the breeze on your face. Besides a clean knight is a happy knight."
Tucker continued to protest as Jessica continued to walk into the water and when it was up to her crotch she gently began to lower Tucker into the water. He was grabbing onto her hand and trying to crawl up her arm but the grip that she had around him was too tight for him to escape. It was not tight enough to give him any discomfort, just to prevent him from escaping.
"I promise I won't let anything happen to you," said Jessica as Tucker was only a couple of metres above the water.
"Please Jessica it's too cold," replied Tucker trying one final time to convince his friend that he didn't want to go in the water.
"Nonsense little man the water is fine."
With that Jessica lowered Tucker into the water and he was shocked at first by the coolness of the water. It was almost like he was being surrounded by ice and he wanted to get out but Jessica still held him there. The water itself at this point was just over sixty feet deep and although he could swim he didn't think that he would get all that far.
After the initial shock of the coldness of the water Tucker had to admit that it wasn't all that bad. It was still colder than he would have liked but it wasn't as bad as he thought it was and at least he could look up at the loving face of Jessica. She also tipped some water over his head so that he could start bathing himself. She contemplated bathing him but she thought that he might see this as being belittling.
"See it's not so bad," said Jessica as she looked down at Tucker. Her pleasant face was more than enough to calm even the most aggressive man. "There was no need to make a scene like that."
"Believe me you don't know what I'd do to make a scene. Besides how can I make a scene when I have you here like this?"
"I guess so, now you better start bathing, I'm getting hungry but I am enjoying having you in my hand like this."
Tucker continued to bathe in the lake and he rubbed the water onto his body. Jessica didn't have a grip on him anymore and instead he was sitting on her hand which was below the water line. She wouldn't let anyone hurt him and all the fish in the lake were too scared of her to try and attack Tucker. There were a couple that could be considered to be man-eaters but none of them were a threat as long as Jessica was here.
It only took a few minutes for Tucker to complete his bathing and as soon as he was finished Jessica lifted him out of the water and she brought him close to her eyes so that she could inspect him of sorts. She wanted to make sure that he was clean and she even wanted to admire his naked body. She could see his penis and although it was not the first time that she had seen it she always liked it. She thought that Tucker was a very handsome man and unlike most other men that she had met he wasn't afraid of her.
"Ok you look clean now," said Jessica with a smile. "Don't you feel refreshed now after taking such a well needed bath?"
"I feel cold," replied Tucker as he rubbed his arms. He wasn't shivering but he still felt colder than he really should be.
"Don't worry about that. You can get put your clothes back on. Well right after you've dried yourself off of course."
Over the next couple of minutes Jessica stepped out of the water and began dry him off by gently rubbing him down with a little part of her dress. She was still naked herself but it was only a small part of her dress that was going to get wet to dry him off so she didn't mind all that much. But as soon as Tucker was dry Jessica put her dress back on and allowed him to dress himself. After that they were more or less ready to carry on but rather than Jessica carrying Tucker she shrank herself down to her minimum size, this was no surprise to him and they carried on with their walk to Lake Town.
Tucker felt a little uncomfortable with the way that Jessica had handled him. He knew that she didn't mean to make him uncomfortable and that she had a heart of gold. For now he would keep this to himself and probably tell her at some point. He did feel safe in her hand and he took comfort in the knowledge that she would never harm him.
The walk into Lake Town itself took just a little over an hour and when they arrived they could see many people in the streets going about their usual business. None had seen Jessica at her maximum size coming towards the town so there was no panic at all. The only thing that many of the townspeople noticed was that she was much taller than everyone else and some even thought that she was wearing stilts. One boy even walked up to Jessica and kicked her in the leg, when he realised that she was indeed extremely tall he ran away.
She didn't seem to mind too much about what the boy had done, he had been young and she accepted that he most likely didn't know any better. In truth it was better than the welcome that she was expecting. She thought that many of the people would probably have started running away from her but she was glad to see that none of them really took all that much notice of her.
There was even a small market in Lake Town and it was bustling with activity. Although it was not as big as the one in Flea Bay it was still large enough for Tucker and Jessica to get almost anything they wanted. Jessica could even see one store that sold dresses but she severely doubted that they would have one in her size.
"Hey you up there," said a voice that caught Jessica by surprise. She looked down and saw a little old woman right by a store that seemed to be selling pieces of jewellery amongst other items. Jessica and Tucker had been walking past it and she had taken an eye to Jessica. The towering woman looked down at the much smaller, older woman who was only around four and a half feet tall herself. "You're such a pretty girl and so tall too. I bet you have to beat the boys away with a stick."
"Why thank you," replied Jessica trying to be nice. She always liked it when someone called her pretty but she didn't like to be reminded that she was tall.
"And I have the perfect item to make you truly a sight to behold." Quickly the old woman picked out a golden necklace that looked to be expensive. The gold on it seemed to glitter in the afternoon sun and Jessica even had to admit that it looked beautiful. "This was forged in the Prime Islands and if you were to wear it you would truly be the most beautiful woman in all the land. You certainly are the tallest at least."
"I'm sorry but I can't afford to buy anything." She tried to give the old woman a smile to show that she wasn't going to buy anything. "All the money I have has to last me a long time and I can only buy it on essentials."
"Oh this isn't for sale. I only reserve this item for the most pretty of individuals and you are by far the prettiest girl that I've seen. You must take it and wear it wherever you go so that people can see your true beauty." She held out the necklace and wanted to put it over Jessica's neck but the height difference was too extreme for her to even make a slight attempt. "Would you be a dear and bend down for me? I am not as tall as I used to be and you are a truly a giant amongst humans."
Jessica did bow down like she was asked and the woman slipped the necklace around her neck. As soon as it was fastened she stood up to her full height again and she couldn't believe that she had just been given a free necklace. From the weight of it she thought that it must have been very expensive. She didn't know if the gold was real or not but even so she had to admit that it looked good on her.
Tucker stood there and looked at the necklace around Jessica's neck. He admitted that it suited her and he knew that she had wanted a necklace but her family had not been able to afford one for her. She never held it against them but seeing her with the necklace made him feel happier. He was a little tired from the walking and wanted to find an inn soon so that the pair could rest up and continue their quest in the morning. He had thought about finding the first trial today but in a few short hours it would be night and would make things too difficult to perform safely. It also gave him and Jessica time to rest up before they left.
"I don't know what to say," said Jessica as she began to feel the necklace in her hand. "Is there nothing I can do in return?"
"There is one thing that you can do for me," replied the old woman. "I would like you to seek the Lord of July and send him a message for me." Underneath a box on the store was a letter enclosed in an envelope. The old woman picked this out and passed it up to Jessica. "Take this to him but there can be no peeking."
"I will do as you have asked me." She gave the old woman a smile as she put the letter in one of her pockets.
"Good, I hope that you have a pleasant journey."
Tucker didn't like the idea of travelling to July. It was one of the main cities located in the Summer Lands that was a couple of hundred miles to the south. In the Summer Lands it was warm there even in the bleakest of winters. In the summer it was considered to be a tropical paradise by many. He admitted that it was somewhere that he would love to visit but he wanted to continue on with the quest and find Three Man's treasure. Then he would go there as the richest man in Angleland rather than a knight.
He thought that it was probably for the best to skip July and continue on with the quest no matter which direction that it took them. But he knew that Jessica wouldn't allow herself to go back on her word. One thing that he did respect about her was that when she said that she would be doing something she would do it. She was a woman of her word and he knew that she wouldn't break it.
The next place that Tucker and Jessica went to was an Inn located at the far end of the town. It was called 'The Silver Fish' and was popular with locals and travellers alike. Unfortunately for Jessica and Tucker there was only one room available and it had one double size bed. The others were all occupied but Jessica didn't mind sleeping in the same bed as Tucker. At least they would be sleeping indoors rather than in the open like the past few nights.
One thing that did annoy Jessica about the inn was that it had low beams. Several times she had to duck to get under these beams and at one point she smacked her forehead off a beam that she had missed. This caused her some annoyance but in her mind it was better than being too tall to fit in the inn itself.
By the time Jessica and Tucker had put their personal effects in the room that night had fallen on the town. And they decided to go down stairs to where people were singing and drinking to their hearts content. There were many men down here who could be called undesirables but they were drinking at their own tables and they didn't seem to want to bother anyone.
Heads did turn when Jessica entered the tavern as they couldn't get over her height. The ceiling was too low for her to stand up straight but there was still plenty of places for them to sit down. Tucker ordered in some ale and brought it to the table where Jessica had sat down at. Even at her minimum size a pint of ale wasn't all that much to drink for her, one advantage of being big was that she could drink many, many pints of ale and not get drunk at all. Tucker on the other hand found it harder to hold his ale and quite a lot of the time he could get drunk on what seemed to be a small amount of ale.
Even though Tucker had placed most of his belongings in the room he kept Juggernaut by his side. He knew that a knight should never be without his sword and with the large amount of undesirables in the tavern he wanted to be sure that he had a decent amount of security by his side.
The inside tavern it was a warm atmosphere with a great fire burning in one of the corners. There were men drinking and singing songs of fair maids and of brave men. Tucker noticed that quite a few of these men had scars on their faces indicating that they had been in sword fights. Many had swords as well hanging from their belts and they looked to be more than capable when it came to using them.
One such individual seemed to walk up to their table without an invitation. The man who approached them was a tall, muscular man with long dark hair and a long beard. He wore what looked to be leather armour and he had a long sword in a carrier strapped to his back. It was obvious to both Jessica and Tucker that he wanted something from them and they seemed to wait for the few seconds that it took for the man to come over to them. When he was close enough instead of standing near the middle of the table he was standing right next to where Jessica was sitting. He gave her a smile revealing his yellow teeth and spaces where he had once had teeth. It was somewhat unnerving to see someone like this and Jessica at first tried to ignore him but his presence was too unnerving for him to be ignored.
"Can we help you at all?" asked Jessica with some curiosity in her voice.
"I believe you can my dear," replied the man. "How about you ditch this skinny bag of bones and hook up with a real man like me. I like my women big and you are by far the biggest woman that I have ever had the pleasure to see. You're taller than even the tallest man I've ever seen and although I might seem small compared to you I assure you I more than make up for it where it really counts."
"No thank you." She tried to be polite so not to completely disrespect him. "I'm sure that there are other women who might be interested though."
"Oh you seem to have misunderstood me, that was not a request."
"And I still have to respectfully decline. You're not my type and besides I only date men who are taller than me." This was a lie but she hoped that it would be enough to make him get the message that she wasn't interested.
"Bullshit little lady, no woman has ever turned me down and I'm not going to let it start now."
"The lady said that's she's not interested," said Tucker looking confident but in reality he was very nervous. "Now why don't you back away and we pretend that none of this ever happened."
Suddenly the entire tavern went deadly quiet as everyone realised what was happening. Almost every person in the Tavern was looking towards the table that Tucker and Jessica were sitting at. They couldn't believe that someone had just told that man to back away. It was obvious to them that the two travellers had no idea who they were talking to and all they could do was wait and see what happened next.