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Posted: Jul 12 2010, 09:51 AM
Member No.: 2
Joined: 18-November 07
"You OK, Buddy?" Charles asked. It was a few weeks later and Connor was back on the job. At the present moment he and Charles were standing on the edge of the town limits of Stratford, near the bridge that led into Veronaville, waiting for backup in the form of Connor's dad.
"Yeah," Connor said, a little testily. Inactivity had not sat well with him, but worse than that was the solicitous attitude of others. He wasn't an invalid and resented being treated like one. "Fine."
Charles only grinned at him. Connor supposed that his friend, who had spent time in a wheelchair, after all, knew exactly how he was feeling. Plus, he was an empath. This knowledge only served to make Connor grumpier.
"Why are we waiting for backup, again?"
"Two vampires are better than one, I guess. Trolls can be tricky. Or so I've heard."
"From whom?" Two months ago trolls were something from fairy tales.
"I dunno. That goat story. Here he is." Charles seemed relieved to have someone other than Connor to talk to. "Hey," he said to Declan.
"Hello. Connor, you OK--"
"Yes," Charles and Connor said at the same time.
Declan chuckled. "Tired of that question?"
"Just a little."
"So, what do we have?"
"Two trolls, asking for payment to cross the bridge to Veronaville."
"Enterprising of them."
"Yeah, well, they don't have a permit," Charles said. "Shall we?"
The three of them walked the half mile to the edge of town and stepped onto the bridge.
"None shall pass," said a gravelly voice.
"Oh, good one, Gurgle," said another.
"Yeah, good touch," said a third voice.
Three hulking shapes stood on the bridge. From what Connor could see in the moonlight trolls were huge hairy beasts with enormous, grotesque faces, the noses being especially prominent. They seemed to walk on their knuckles, like half-ton Chimpanzees.
"I thought you said there were two of them," he said to Charles.
"One apiece," Declan said. "Brilliant."
"You're going to have to cease and desist," Charles told the trolls. "This is a public bridge."
"Well, not anymore it's not. Pay up or be eaten." The trolls guffawed at that last remark.
"What's the payment?" Declan asked.
"Not much, you'll hardly miss it."
"Your first born child."
"Well, this is mine," Declan said, indicating Connor, who pulled his sword with a grin. He'd been itching for a fight. "You're welcome to try."
"We can do this the hard way or the easy way," Charles said. "Your choice. Leave now."
"Or what, tiny human?"
"Yeah, you don't scare us."
Declan, Charles, and Connor exchanged glances and shrugged.
The hard way it was.
"You know what these trolls need?" Charles asked as they awaited the monster's charge.
"Baths?" Declan suggested.
"No," Charles said, ducking and flipping a troll over his shoulder and into the river. "Swimming lessons."
"Help!" the troll yelled. "I can't swim."
"Oh, for--" said the second troll, stopping and rolling his eyes.
"Let him drown," said the third, aiming a huge fist at Declan, which the vampire easily parried. "Whoah. Tiny human is fast."
"Can't let him drown. He's my brother in law. My wife would kill me."
"Good point," said troll number three, kicking at Declan, who jumped out of the way. "Your wife is scary."
"Stupid, useless--" The second troll jumped off the bridge after the first.
Faced with three unexpectedly armed, nimble opponents, the remaining troll held up his arms. "I surrender."
"Good," Charles said. "Get off this bridge and don't come back. Next time we won't be so nice about it."
"Yeah, yeah," the troll said, jumping off the bridge after his friends.
"Damn," Connor said. "I was hoping for a fight."
"Come on," Charles said. "The night is still young."
"Maybe we can find some goblins or a princess in need of rescuing," Declan agreed.
"Remember when it was just drunks, thieves, and vampires?" Connor said, following them off the bridge.
"Yeah," Charles said. "Who'da thought those would turn out to be the good old days?"
Posted: Jul 12 2010, 04:15 PM
Where you at, Hon?
Member No.: 3
Joined: 18-November 07
And I think I'm about to learn everything I wanted to know about goblins and ghouls and things that go bump in the night, but was afraid to ask...
Posted: Jul 17 2010, 06:42 AM
Member No.: 4
Joined: 19-November 07
Just so you know, I'm commenting on this over on the other site.