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Of Heroes Common and Imperial

The fox boy dashed up the path to the large double front doors and let out an almighty yell, politely inquiring if anyone was at home….. A voice called out a hello from behind him, which seemed strange, and he went to investigate, peering over the adjacent wall but there was no one in evidence. He was still looking around when his friend Stormy appeared from the house to join him in the garden.

Tepic was intently curious to find out how the lad was, and what had happened the night before, terribly disappointed he had missed the excitement. They chatted companionably about the fate of Stormy’s eye, the advantages of being a pirate – offset by the possibility of scurvy and the dreadful consequence of having to eat vegetables. The possibility of glass eyes was intriguing, not only could you have different ones according to how you were feeling, you could have hollow ones that could hold all sorts of things…. Still, Stormy wasn’t in that position, but they did talk about him making special goggles to help him see better, which with a bit of imagination could also be quite neat.

The conversation turned to the events of the previous evening, Tepic relating the accounts he had heard, of old man Effingham turning into a huge monster, beating up Father Moonwall and the other Builders until the Emperor had stepped in to save the day, breathing on the creature til it had exploded! It was a wonderful tale, though Stormy did note that he had missed most of it, what with being buried underneath a building at the time.

This brought up another topic, how Strifeclaw had courageously saved Stormy and Rudy. The boys pondered for a while, looking across the street to the Junk Yard, then Tepic spoke up…
“yer recon Strifeclaw an the Emperor should get medals or sumethin?”
“They should! They’re heroes! and the Builder Church are like… CRAZY!”
” yep, that they are… well……. if the Builders ain’t gonna do it, maybe we could… snaffle some metal disk blanks….”
They gazed into the tempting confines of the paradise that was the Junk Yard again.
“Yeah, we could make medals!” Stormy said excitedly.
“go down the foundry an talk one of the blokes there inter stamping something fancy on em….” Tepic continued, to enthusiastic nods from his friend. “then down the Blue Sparrow…. lasses there have all sorts of fancy ribbons, an theys always friendly like…”
Stormy thought about this, then asked “Think they’ll do it for free?”
” well, they makes a right fuss of me when i delivers the vole fur….. no idea what they does with so much, it’s good fer lining warm clobber, but…..  recon we could talk em into it, cus of the heroes, an you bein injured an saved by em an all…..”
“That’s true!”
“lets have a look over the Yard, don’t recon Petra will mind”, Tepic concluded, and with that both boys dashed over the road to begin their quest….

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  1. Avariel Falcon Avariel Falcon April 24, 2013



    Why don’t you pop those in the gold plating tank! Yay!

  2. Beryl Strifeclaw Beryl Strifeclaw April 28, 2013

    Arnold was barely three and a half feet tall and covered in rags while he was crouching on a fence and watching a strange procession of people around him congratulating a man by giving him something to wear around his neck at city hall.  The ritual confused him and so did a word he had never heard before.  He looked down at Oskir, who was laying against the fence with a bottle of bum wine in his hand, and asked, “What’s a hero?”

    Oskir looked at Arnold intently, his eye lids drunkenly drooping down.  “A hero?  Is a fool!”

    Arnold looked back at the adoring crowd, and then back at Oskir, confused,  “A fool?”

    Oskir slowly roused himself into a sitting position as he looked at the cat intently despite his head tilting to his left side, “The biggest fool.” 

    Arnold didn’t understand, but Oskir was more than happy to inform him that heros threw themselves into death.  They would rush into a collapsing building and be surprised when it collapsed right on top of them.  That they were paraded in front of the masses and stood on pedastals to recieve their awards in public where any villain or lad who wished to become famous could shoot them.

    “Heroes are the worst kind of fool, because most of them crusts love ’em,” Oskir said with a sneer, “But you look at that crowd and see if you don’t see a few of our kind wanting to take a shot!”

    Oskir gestured for him to go down the street and examine the crowd closer, and now that he was looking for it he could see them clearly.  Some of them he knew to be thieves, highwaymen, and roughs, and others were ‘buisness men’.  He turned back to Oskir and ran back, telling him he thought he understood what he was saying.

    “You need to understand.  If even one of them wanted to take the shot here how would that hero see it in time?”  Oskir sneered and he got closer to the cat, the stench of his liquor overpowering Arnold’s nose.  “Don’t you ever let people think you are a hero.  You have enough trouble without putting a giant target on your head!”

    Arnold looked up from the ground at his mentor, who had kept him alive for over a year with his advice since coming to this city, “How?”

    Oskir said as he slumped back against the fence, “You only ever do something if you have a selfish reason to do it.” 

    Beryl barely remembered Oskir anymore, or his lessons as he recieved an urgent letter requesting his presence at noon on Sunday.

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