Hey, look at this! I’m actually posting on Thursday, the day I’m supposed to! Wow. This is a monumental occasion. Let me take a moment to drink in the wonder of this.
*takes a moment*
Oh. It’s Friday. Phooey.
Anyway. Do you remember that stupid story I wrote a while ago? You probably don’t, so I’ll remind you.
Well, I wrote a sequel. Which is just as stupid as its predecessor. I shan’t bore you with excuses for its stupidity—just go read.
Dearest, Loveliest Zira,
I hope you remember me. You know, Sylvestrus? That brave, charming, witty, intelligent, and handsome squire to Sir Taturtaut? The one you confessed your undying affection for last night when you slapped him? You may be wondering why I’m writing this letter. The answer, Zira dear, is that I am in love. And when one is in love, letters seem so much more official. I have to tell you something, something that I hope will convince you of my honor and courage, and win your hand.
You see, I, Sylvestrus Livingstone Clarencourt the Thirteenth, am a Dagon Slayer.
This obviously must impress you. If you wanted to marry me on the spot after reading this letter, I would think none the worse of you. But I must warn you, Zira, what follows is the true and unaltered account of how I killed the beast, with no detail excluded. If you are one of those faint-hearted girls who swoon away at the slightest mention of blood, I would suggest skipping to the end, where I say, ‘Affectionately Yours, Sylvestrus’. This is not the tale of a sixteen year old squire, but of a man (myself, obviously), and it includes quite a lot of blood, gore, and grisly details. Killing dragons, you see, is not an easy affair.
I have heard that when a knight goes questing to win a lady’s favor, she will present him with her kerchief, and he will wear it on his arm. That is what I did. Well, in part. I tried to get your kerchief, but that was when you slapped me in the face. I went ahead and took it anyway, because I felt sure that you had somehow misunderstood me. I hope you don’t mind, though I dare say that if you had known that I was trying to win your hand, you would have given it to me without question.
Anyway, for knight training this week, we were supposed to spend several days assisting the people of Plerp. This created a good deal of strife among the squires, since we all wanted certain tasks, but not others. For instance, Dougal Dogby, Crumby Blots, and I all wanted to help you in the kitchen, but no one wanted to to help Miggles Grumpkin in the hog pen.
The solution was quite simple: Since I am the most industrious fellow in Weeble, I deserved to get the least strenuous job, while Crumby and Dougal, who hardly ever lift a finger to help me, should learn the value of hard labor in the pigsty. They, however, are not the brightest lads, and refused to see the logic in this.
“You always get the easy jobs,” Crumby whined. “I don’t think it’s fair.”
“My dear Crumby,” I said patiently, “when have I ever gotten anything that you haven’t?”
He screwed up his intriguingly unattractive face, almost convincing one that he was deep in thought, though I knew that couldn’t be true. People like me, who have intelligence, are prone to deep thinking, but the likes of a Blot is incapable of such a difficult endeavor. “Well,” he finally said, “you get chastised a lot.”
This statement, besides being downright insulting, was completely random and off topic. I was veritably offended, and told him so.
Dougal snickered. “He has a point, Sylvestrus. Remember the Spoon Incident?”
“That wasn’t my fault,” I calmly yelled. “If I remember correctly, you were the one who wished a turkey on poor Sir Taturtaut’s head.”
“And then there was that time when the knights were taking us hunting,” said Crumby, still on the subject of my grossly exaggerated faults, “but you tripped Princess Dipwad down the stairs and Gambergain made you stay behind for penance.”
(For the record, Zira, I did not trip the princess. My foot did. I would never have been so unchivalrous, and one cannot be blamed for the actions of a renegade foot.)
Let me explain something to you, Zira. When Dougal Dogby grins, it generally is a presage of something bad. And, as usual, I was right. “I think he did it for the punishment,” said Dougal. “I don’t think he wanted to go on the hunt because he was scared.”
“My dear Dougal,” I scoffed, “What could I have possibly been scared of?”
“Dragons,” Crumby said promptly.
Let it be known that I do not believe in dragons. And if I did, I certainly wouldn’t be afraid of them. So I said, “Really, Crumby, you do say such nonsense. Dragons are perfectly amiable creatures, besides the fact that they burn villages to the ground and eat the inhabitants. Why on earth would I be frightened of them?”
“Because you tripped Dipwad down the stairs,” said Dougal.
“First of all, I didn’t trip her. And second, how does that prove that I’m afraid of dragons?”
“Because you did it on purpose!”
Do you see what I have to put up with?
The slander of my good name had to end, so right then and there, I made a decision. “Alright. You know what, Dougal Dogby? My service to the people of Plerp is going to be dragon slaying. I,” here I paused for dramatic effect, “am going to slay a dragon.”
This may sound preposterous to you. Bear with me. Although dragons are amiable beasts, why would anyone want to put up with burned down villages and eaten inhabitants? Ridding the land of them is a far more worthy endeavor than aiding someone in the pigsty. In fact, I’m rather proud of the bravery and thoughtfulness I exhibit sometimes.
But my fellow squires, being the unintelligent lads that they are, did not understand in the least. In fact, Dougal laughed. “You, a dragon slayer?” he howled. “Now I’ve heard everything.”
“Just you wait, Dougal Dogby,” I declared. “By tomorrow evening, I will have killed a dragon.”
I was firm in my resolve, and the following morning (the morning after you slapped me), I awoke, eager to set out on my perilous quest. I went to the kitchen and borrowed some tidbits, packing them in my knapsack. Then, buckling my trusty sword to my waist, I crossed the drawbridge of Weeble. My quest had officially begun.
It was sometime around this point that I realized I didn’t know where dragons were located. This was a major drawback, and for a moment, I considered abandoning the quest. But then an image of Dougal Dogby’s jeering face surfaced in my memory. You see, Zira, no one in Weeble seems to respect me. I work tirelessly, night and day, but do they notice? No. I’m always kind, never speaking a cross word or thinking a contentious thought, but do they care? Certainly not. It was high time that changed, and I was sure that killing a dragon would do it.
I eventually concluded that my search ought to start in Flimmerwood Forest. It’s dark and dank and dreary, the nasty sort of place that would please a nasty dragon. But did its dark dankness scare me? Oh no, I’m too brave for that. Unfortunately, there was a strange, invisible current in the air that I think I was allergic to. I was having the strangest reaction to it; my knees began to shake, and my innerds tremble, and it only took a few steps into the forest for me to begin sympathizing with wind tossed leaves. But I pressed on.
Then a strange puff of smokiness crossed paths with my nostrils. I inhaled the pungent whiff of acrid air and charred wood. Some poor fool must have left his campfire burning. But wait—they were camping in Flimmerwood?
That’s when it struck me: I had found a dragon! After all, they breathe fire, do they not? All I had to do was follow my nose, and it would lead me straight to my prey. Very shortly, I would encounter a dragon.
I thought perhaps I’d eat something first.
And, you know, have a short respite from walking. After all, I’d been traipsing about half the day. I needed to be in peak condition before I met a dragon. Mind you, Zira, I wasn’t going to take a nap. That idea is preposterous. I merely wanted to rest my legs.
I woke up sometime later when a sticky substance dripped onto my face and nearly drowned me by sliding into my nose. I sat up, sputtering. “Look here,” I cried, addressing whoever it was that thought it funny to drown noble young squires. “That’s rather—”
My indignation was cut short when my gaze met that of an eye. Not two eyes, mind you, as is customary. A single eye, peering down into my face. I would say it looked human, but I cannot ignore the fact that it was single. And scaly. And twice as large as me. Moreover, it was purple, which is not a respectable human eye color.
There was only one creature this eye could belong to.
Did I lose my courage? Not a bit. Scrambling up and brandishing my sword, I leaped back twenty feet and let out a yelp to intimidate the creature. The dragon swiveled its head so both eyes were visible, and watched me placidly. It was a horrible sight; brutally flabby scales ridged its back, and there was such a dreadfully bored look in its eyes. I knew it was formulating the best way to eat me.
It opened its powerful jaws, rolling back huge, scaly lips to reveal surprisingly blunt teeth. Drawing myself to my full height, I waved my sword in front of me and let loose a roaring battle cry before I charged:
A tree somehow got in the way of my attack, and it had such marvelous bark that I thought perhaps I’d stop behind it for further examination. I could hear the dragon yawning; it was clearly frightened out of its wits. Poking my head around the tree, I dared a peek at the great beast.
He was now laying on the ground, his giant head propped up on an outstretched arm. He looked at me from half-lidded eyes. “I suppose you think you’re going to slay me?” it said in a voice that was surprisingly un-dragon like. Rather high pitched and whiny.
That’s when it knocked me out.
End of part one. Stay tuned for more!