Tuesday 10 – Hall

Each week, we will spend ten minutes writing and attempting to complete a flash story. We hope that the exercise will allow us to grow as writers, as well as provide a small amount of entertainment for you. Further, we hope to inspire you to do the same.

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Defending the Kingdom

The two brothers leaned against the dilapidated structure side by side, both sweating and breathing heavily. They were too young to be in this kind of danger, but as they clutched their rifles they knew they didn’t have any other choice. Who else was going to defend the kingdom? With dangerous territories bordering on three sides, there was always a war to be fought.

The wilds to the south were inviting to their adventurous spirit, and on more than one occasion they’d ventured there. They built a temporary shelter and stayed for a time, but when mysterious forces rumbled ever closer in the distance their spirit faltered and they returned to their home land.

To the west was the ghostly nation, one sometimes occupied but so often not. Their bravery had been tested in that land, too, on several occasions. They’d made incursions into the territory, at once convinced there was nobody there while simultaneously being convinced that there truly were occupants. The evidence uncovered sent them scurrying back over the border to their own land and had them making deals that they’d never again set foot in the ghostly nation.

To the east was the Glasses King, a tall man with a smile one day and a scowl the next. He looked to assimilate all who would approach, and many a person fell into his trap. He’d push up his glasses and smile, and those who went with him never returned. The brothers waged a fierce war against him once, utilizing weaponry discovered in the wilds. They lobbed the small bombs over the border at the Glasses King, unaware he was in the middle of brainwashing one of his converts at the time. The Glasses King was furious and came racing into the brother’s kingdom. But they were too fast, running on little legs and diving beneath a vehicle, sliding on their stomachs in the rocks to avoid the unseemly grip of the Glasses King.

But on this day, as they wiped sweat and dirt from their faces, the brothers were facing a threat in their own kingdom. They were much too young to die, but far too brave not to fight. They rushed from cover as creatures swarmed from the sky. The rifles in their hands were out of bullets, so they used them like clubs instead. This just angered the creatures and they swooped down faster, more determined than ever to strike. The brothers would not win this war, and they retreated to the safety of the lagoon in the middle of their territory, diving in and believing themselves safe. The flying creatures would have none of it, and continue to attack. The brothers couldn’t stay underwater forever, and eventually had to use an overturned canoe to protect themselves.

Finally, mercifully, the assault ended. So too did the brothers hours of play. They climbed out of the swimming pool, laughing as they checked the air for the bees that had been harassing them. They rushed into the house dripping wet, met as expected by the protests of their mother who hated it when they came in before drying off.

Author’s note:  I feel so lucky to have grown up with a brother in a time of great imagination when we had all these wonderful adventures right there in our backyard.  My parents still live in that house and anytime I step foot in the backyard I can still gaze upon the ghostly nation to the west, the wilds to the south (not so wild anymore, someone bought the field and mowed it), and the old home of the Glasses King, who thankfully moved away when we were still children.

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