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Sir Azrael
Jan 14, 2004

Locked, cocked, and polygonally rifled... This creature fears nothing.

In.

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Sir Azrael
Jan 14, 2004

Locked, cocked, and polygonally rifled... This creature fears nothing.

Sir Azrael posted:


The Greatest of Fools - 704 words

Theogren raised his battleax in the air and shouted as he came into view of the city. The army behind him howled and pounded the earth with their spears. Their armor shone brightly, and each of them wore a crimson cape. Behind them, horses pulled with them engines of siege, and catapults. Theogren advanced down the hill with his four-man guard and shouted at the men in the parapets above the closed gate of the city of Aran.

“I am Theogren, champion of King Aldus the Conqueror, and general over his army! Open your gates! I have come to restore the King's Order here in Aran.”

The men disappeared, and with a great noise the gates were lifted a short ways and a few people passed through the teeth at their bottom. Five carried shields and short swords, and wore dull shirts of chain over gray-green padded coats. One of them was a head taller than the rest, and wore steel plate that was scarred and pitted with age. He carried a great sword in a leather baldric. They walked out and stopped, and the gates shut behind them. Following them was a fool. The fool danced as she went, turning somersaults and cartwheels in their wake. Her uniform was such an unsightly profusion of pattern and color that that her constant movement had a kaleidoscopic effect.

Theogren and his guard advanced to meet them. The fool stood on her head and spoke to them as they approached, stopping in the dry and stony path leading to the gate.

“Hail and well met, Theogren. I am Dasha. I can only imagine that you expected to be greeted by a greater authority than this. However, only a fool would leave the safety of the city when an army approaches, and only the greatest of fools would follow that blunder by telling their general to gently caress himself, to her and her audience's great amusement, but alas: I am the world's greatest fool, and to be here today is a matter of professional pride.”

Theogren fumed, at a loss for words.

The Fool happily filled the silence. She produced a dagger and an orange and she from two concealed pockets. She peeled the orange with the sharp blade and ate the slices, which she chewed as she spoke. “Aran no longer recognizes Aldus as its rightful King. The city of Aran will govern itself independently from now on. This city is under my protection now, and your army will leave and will not return, with or without you leading it, General Theogren.”

The tall man drew his great sword slowly. Theogren snarled and rushed at the tall swordsman, ordering his men to attack. None of the guards moved, as if captivated by the scene. The fool threw a banana peel beneath Theogren's heel as he ran. Thogren fell headlong. The swordsman suppressed a bark of laughter.

Theogren pushed himself out of the gravelly dirt. He knelt and then stood slowly, hampered by his heavy armor. Her was scuffed and dirty; his face grim. He paused, no longer certain who the real threat was. Everyone was watching the fool. Theogren unclasped his torn cape and let it fall lifelessly to the ground. Dasha danced and giggled and spun before him, juggling brightly colored swatches of cloth. The effect was maddening. Theogren swung his ax at her in a deadly arc. The fool danced and whirled, evading his ax neatly, and soon had it tangled in her scarves. With a twist of her body and another cartwheel, she wrenched the ax from his grasp. Dasha spun like a discus thrower, lobbing the ax and her scarves towards one of Aran's men.

“Catch!” Said she.

He dodged it, grinning.

Some of Theogren's men backed away. A few of Aran's men laughed openly. The fool joined them, cackling gleefully, her bells jingling. Theogren clutched a wrist protectively, as it had been badly twisted.

“They say that death wears the garb of a fool because she too mocks the meek and mighty in equal measure. Do you not feel mocked, champion? Do you not feel mocked, general? Am I not the world's greatest fool?”

Theogren, wincing for the pain of it, applauded.

Sir Azrael
Jan 14, 2004

Locked, cocked, and polygonally rifled... This creature fears nothing.

Having internalized the feedback I learned some things: Someone thinks I've got comedy down regardless of the fact that my story's greatest success was a rehash of the "banana peel pratfall" joke. Also: My characters are flat, I need to work on it. I need to get weird. Real weird.

On that note: I'm in.

And: My writing invokes anger. I will try not to use this power for evil.

Sir Azrael
Jan 14, 2004

Locked, cocked, and polygonally rifled... This creature fears nothing.

Thank you, Fumblemouse.

Sir Azrael
Jan 14, 2004

Locked, cocked, and polygonally rifled... This creature fears nothing.

The end of an Era

600 Words


May walked through the yellowing grass in her front lawn and opened the door. Her roommates, April and June, were lounging about and trying to stay cool. April was face down in front of their failing air conditioner, and June sat next to her reading a book. They both looked up at May.
“We are having a party.” May said, flatly.
“Not here we're not,” said June. “It's roasting outside and our air conditioner is basically fried.”
“Then we can have it somewhere else, but we're going to party and I am going to get drunk.”
“Are we mourning or celebrating?” April asked, propping herself up on her elbows.
“Both, I guess?” May answered. “The end of an era, basically.”
“Did I miss a memo?” June asked, raising an eyebrow.
“I dumped Ken,” May replied, reaching into the freezer for the bottle of Potter's gin they had saved for no reason other than a friend left it there and they had never bothered to throw it out.
“Oh my God,” April said, sitting up.
“Finally,” June said. April glared at her, but got only a pair of rolled eyes for her trouble. “What?” June asked. “He was a dick and I never liked him.” May unscrewed the bottle and took a swig, wincing as it burned its way down even as she celebrated the sudden feeling of cold.
“Wow.” said April, in response to both.
“No, she's right.” May said, thumping her chest and coughing.
June put down her book. “I bet Tom and Dick would be down.”
The phone rang. May, being the only person standing, walked over and picked it up. It was Tom. June put him on speaker. His cheery voice filled the room.
“Hi ladies! Haven't seen you in a while. Did you all want to swing by tonight for some drinks and five dollar poker?
“We're in.” May said, putting the crappy gin back into the freezer.

June, April and May stepped into the air conditioning and perked up perceptibly. Tom greeted them at the door and led them to the kitchen.
Grinning, Dick opened a mini fridge full of bottles. “Can I get you ladies anything?”
“We'll take the lot,” May said.
June chuckled. “I'll take a glass of scotch and some cold water.”
“Cosmopolitan, if you please!” April said, returning his grin.
Dick poured their drinks. “And an Alaskan Amber for Miss May.”
Tom grabbed a few bottles and they all made their way to the living room. For a while they just drank and listened to Judas Priest.
“We were literally just talking about you guys when you called. It's like you're psychic or something.” April said, breaking the ice as she got up to get the cards.
“I am psychic, remember?” Tom said.
“Oh, yeah,” said April.
“I love that you called just after I drank that nasty gin,” said April.
“One must suffer to appreciate joy,” Tom replied.
“I didn't marry him for his sense of humor, you know,” Dick intoned, nudging June.
“I dumped Ken. Apparently he's been banging some skank behind my back.”
“Sweetie, that man is garbage,” Tom said.
“That's what I said,” June said, pouring spring water into her fifth glass of scotch.
“You know what we have to do now, right?” said Dick, putting on his wizard hat.
May shrugged.
“Summon a demon to exact our revenge?” April asked.
"Yup."
Dick retrieved some candles from the cupboard, arranging them in a circle. He lit them, said a few words in the old tongues, and reached into his pocket.
“Right after I fire up this joint.”

Sir Azrael
Jan 14, 2004

Locked, cocked, and polygonally rifled... This creature fears nothing.

Thanks for hosting, Nethilia! Thanks for reading my crap, sorry about the crap part.

Thank you, sebmojo.

Some Guy TT: These are my first attempts at writing anything self contained, so criticism like yours is super valuable. Next time I'll try to open with a bang! Thank you.

Sir Azrael
Jan 14, 2004

Locked, cocked, and polygonally rifled... This creature fears nothing.

In, with a request for a flash rule please.

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Sir Azrael
Jan 14, 2004

Locked, cocked, and polygonally rifled... This creature fears nothing.

"Fog of War"
650 words

Blood and gore spattered against the back of the trench as a North Korean bullet took Corporal Grassadonio in the neck. He fell backwards into the frozen dirt, steam rising from the ground as the blood flowed out of him. Everyone dropped their playing cards and rushed over to him. It was immediately apparent that Grassadonio was not going to make it. No amount of pressure would stop the bleeding. Lieutenant “LT” Lavoie looked at Sergeant Allnut helplessly. The sergeant let go of the soaked bandages and held his hand as Corporal Grassadonio quickly bled to death.

Allnut sat next to his dead friend in the frozen dirt. He lit a cigarette and inhaled. The harsh smoke filling his lungs, and he exhaled a white cloud that was half steam and half carcinogens. He looked around at his fellow soldiers. The others hugged their rifles and stared at LT, waiting for their orders. He gave none. Allnut flipped his cigarette over the trench wall and crawled over to the lieutenant.

“We have to do something,” Sergeant Allnut whispered so that the others would not hear. It was bad form to question a superior openly, but LT was clearly in shock. He pulled a cigarette and tried to light it, but his hands shook.

LT shook his head. “You know the rules, Sergeant. There is an armistice. We aren't allowed to fire back.”

“That’s a load of political horse poo poo and you know it, LT.” Sergeant Allnut lit LT’s cigarette for him. “There’s no one but us and the commies out here. The people making those rules are far away and safe in their cozy little conference rooms. They didn't just watch their friend die.”

LT’s eyes widened and looked at the sergeant as if he had never seen him before. “What are you saying we should do?”

Sergeant Allnut gripped his rifle. “We’re going to kill those motherfuckers.”

They dragged the corpse to the entrance of the dugout and covered it with a sheet. The body would keep until the next supply run came in, and they would take him home to be buried. One of the privates worked a bellows in the corner, trying to breathe life into the fire that provided their only heat. Outside, and away from the wall, was a stockpile of anti-personnel mortars.

The Chinese officer struck Corporal Bulguksa in the knee with the butt of his rifle. The Korean soldier crumpled to the ground and dropped his rifle. Others gathered, drawn by the sudden violence and noise. The officer pinned Bulguksa's arms to the ground.

“I could not stand the silence another minute! They shelled the factories my family worked in!” Bulguksa shook with rage. “Their bombs killed my wife and son! We sit idle in political armistice and for what? Our leaders have failed us, and the military will not rise to the occasion. I curse them all!”

The Chinese officer shook the man, screaming. “The military sided with our leaders to prevent further casualties to your people you fool! Do you have any idea what you've done, or what the Americans are capable of doing? Military protocol dictates that I execute you for treason, but I doubt there will be much time at all before…”

The officer was interrupted by the whistling of falling mortars.

The Lieutenant watched through his spotting scope as the mortars fell. They burst in the air above the communist soldiers, shredding the area with shrapnel. Next came shells full of phosphorus, which rained corrosive debris on the survivors. When the mortars died down, LT could hear the screams and wails of the enemy combatants. Lieutenant Lavoie turned away, shuddering. He could no longer watch.

“We got those fuckers good didn't we, sir?” Sergeant Allnut cheered, celebrating what would likely be the only action he would ever see in this war.

Lieutenant Lavoie looked towards the rising smoke.

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