If you’ve tried to ride a cat into battle, you should know it doesn’t turn out well.
The enemy lined up in the distance. Their snarls and growls made me shiver, the tremble shaking me to the bones. “Steady on,” my mount purred.
I took a breath, calming myself, reaching forward to scratch behind his pointed ears. “Nerves like steel, whiskers like wind.” I repeated the battle mantra, imagining the steel in my bones. It was a pretense, imagining strength where there was none – I knew how easily my bones, tiny in comparison to the enemy, would break. And yet, it worked. I was calmer, and ready. Continue reading “Murine Honor”
Write a story where the reader is actively involved in the story.
I waited. So long, it seems, that I waited. Then, light fell upon my pages once more. It must have been years. The child who once looked at my illustrations in wonder had grown.
It seems like you were ready to learn the truth behind the pretty pictures. You were more than you were. You had focus and commitment, and instead of touching the surface of the worlds within me you delved deeply. You immersed yourself in paper and ink and I regaled you with wonders. I told you about heroes and villains, of good men corrupted, bad men redeemed. I taught you about triumph and victory, failure and defeat, how to heal men and how to break them. I taught you the difference between fighting and battle, about friendship and about comrades and romance and betrayal and good and evil. I raised you within multitudes of worlds.
Then the darkness came again.
I waited. So long, it seems, that I waited. Then, light fell upon my pages once more. It must have been years. The teenager that I had raised among so many worlds was old, now. But the child in the bed was not. This child looked on in wonder, as you once did.
“Once upon a time . . . ”
You work at Magic Support. It’s like Tech support, but for magic.
Another crystal lit up red, as their counterparts would be doing on a dozen other desks. I watched it for a moment, hoping someone else would reach for it first, but after a moment it was stubbornly red. I reached out and picked up the crystal. It turned yellow for me – if someone else grabbed it now, it would still show red. This was my call, now. After a moment it turned green, and a voice rang out in my mind.
“Hello? Is this thing working? I’m trying to get a ‘cure disease’ spell to work, but it just gave me a headache.”
I sighed and covered my face. Another careless teenage mage, trying to resolve their teenage stupidity without their parents finding out. Continue reading “Mag Support”
Valhalla does not discriminate against the kind of fight you lost. Did you lose the battle with cancer? Maybe you died in a fist fight. Even facing addiction. After taking a deep drink from his flagon, Odin slams his cup down and asks for the glorious tale of your demise!
Author’s note: It’s not the tale of his demise, but I think it adhered to the spirit of the prompt. Close enough.
In life, I never drank. In death, it was merriment and partying, and there was no work or reputation to worry about. I drank experimentally at first, then more freely. Soon I was drunker than I’d ever been, though that didn’t say much. Then the man at the head of the table – after all I’d seen, was it possible he was truly Odin? – slammed his cup down, making me jump.
“I look at our newest member, and I don’t see a warrior!” His voice carried down the hall of Valhalla, resonant and booming. “I see a paper-pusher! A functionary!” He spat the word as if it were a curse.
Continue reading “Defense Rests.”
Your main character is a Tree. An oak, if you are undecided, otherwise, your choice.
For centuries I’d stood in close company with many others like me. My companions made many demands. I had taken root in rocky soil, and they all wanted to drink from the earth. It was not easy to live with so many hungry companions, some much taller, reaching much deeper than I.
After the Infestation, times were not so lean. The others were fewer, and the land thus richer. It was the first time I had been thankful for woodpeckers; they dug into my flesh, but they also ate the pests that threatened me. For a long time after that, I drank from the earth and spread my arms to the sun. Though the children of the lost grew and crowded once more, I was already tall and broad. My leaves spread wide, and my roots spread deep, breaking the rock apart beneath me to reach deeper, richer sources.
Continue reading “Until the World Changes Again”