Time to squeeze out some more writing if I can, and this time the words will be liberally flung at the Terribleminds Flash Fiction competition. Each week Mr Wendig sets us a little old challenge and then we all trot off back to our own blogs and create the lexicological wonder that is word-smithy.
This week’s challenge is of Gygaxual proportions, we have to click on this link here, which will generate us a D&D character, and then we write 1000 words. Easy!
I clicked the link and I got…
‘Apathetic Halfling Ranger from a nomad circus who unwittingly misuses words all the bloody time’
… So now I just need those 1000 words.
‘Please help me, kind sir. Wolves from the local forest have attacked my cattle. Please go into the forest and kill ten of them before my cattle come to any more harm?’
The Ranger considered what the bruised and rather battered farmer standing in front of the Halfling ranger had said. ‘No, thanks. Bye.’
‘Do you understand what I’m saying? They are going to kill my livestock.’
‘Yes, you said. Well good luck with that’ said the ranger as he turned to walk away wondering if there was anywhere he could get some roast chicken.
The farmer caught him by the arm, and spun him round. ‘Don’t you care?’
‘Ummmm not really, no. Though it’s clear you do. You should get started on that whole wolf killing thing.’
The farmer signed and took a deep breath. ‘I’m going to explain to you how this works, you see this glowing exclamation mark above my head? Well that means that I am a quest giver and that means you are supposed to help me. In exchange I will mystically make you a more experienced ranger and give you some gold.’
The ranger stared back with an expressionless face. ‘So you want me to go out into the wilderness, and kill ten wolves from that wolf burrow nearby, because you fear they might attack your cattle? You said that exact same thing to that pleated warrior over there, and god knows how many before it. If every one of us kills ten wolves we’re not talking about a cull you’re talking about mass murder, you’re talking about extinquish. I didn’t leave the circus just to wander about the countryside and slaughter species because a farmer didn’t have the foresight to check the local areas wildlife before setting up his farm.’
The farmer squinted at the ranger unsure as to why he was having so much difficulty when every other adventurer before him had simply accepted his quest.
‘Look, you’re thinking about this too much, and the wolves will breed just as fast as you can kill them so don’t worry about them becoming extinct.’ As soon as the words had passed his lips, the farmer knew they were a mistake.
‘So it actually doesn’t do any bloody difference at all whether I kill them or not? I don’t care who you are, you’re not making any sense and I am not going to waste my time slaughtering the survival equivalent of Duracell bunnies.’
‘Ummm not sure, sorry. Anyway it has been an absolute expedience talking to you and good luck with your pointless wolf killing.’
The ranger took a few steps but then turned back to the farmer, something unsettling dawning on him. The exclamation mark above the farmers head glowed again.
‘Please help me kind sir. Wolves from the local forest have attacked my cattle. Please could you go into the forest and kill ten of them, before my cattle come to any more harm?’
‘What? We’ve done that’ said the Ranger.
‘Sorry’ said the farmer, his enthusiasm draining from him by the moment. ’If you’re not going to kill the wolves for me, why are you pestering me?’
‘Is this how my life is going to be now then? In order to become big and strong and save the kingdom from dragons, I’m going to have to wander the land and help people who by rights should be sorted out by natural selection and survival of the fittest.’
‘Well…’ stuttered the farmer.
‘I’m going to have to be every Tom, Dick and Harvey’s bitch for the rest of my life, just so I get the chance to risk my life even more by fighting bigger and more dangerous things?’
‘I think it’s better if you don’t think of it that way…. just kill those wolves for me and you’ll feel better.’
‘Oh, I doubt that. I’m just sorry I wasted all that time in that cockamamie tutorial. At least I realised it now.’
The ranger sheathed his sword and sat down, an exclamation mark appeared above his head, and the rangers new and much easier life began.