lunedì, luglio 18, 2005

The Chronicles of Teffaru: Episode 5

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The Chronicles of Teffaru: Episode 5
By Eddie G.


The Eddie G. lay thinking on hiS back while reflecting on the many things that have happened within such a short span of time. Peering intently at the canopy of hiS makeshift tent, hE wondered if hiS insomnia occurred because of the thoughts fighting for attention in hiS already cluttered mind, or because of something else.


The demi-Mortal was getting restless. So many things needed to be sorted out, and hE was losing sleep over them, if not the something else. The meeting with his arch-nemesis, Drutho, was inevitable, hE reminded himselF, but hE clearly hadn’t expected it to be that soon. It was the first time in centuries hE (voluntarily, that is) had sought for hiM.


Incidentally, hE realized two weeks just after creating what Lucifer was to God, that “Drutho” spelt backwards was “Oh, turd”. I should have known that it was prophetic hE thought bitterly to himself.


And then there was Eizenara, hiS beloved. When would hE ever see heR again? The key hE had raided from Drutho’s throne room was glowing softly as it hung around hiS neck. Now all that was needed for hiM was to get the King’s crown, and that shouldn’t pose too much of a problem. Again, hE silently cursed Drutho. How could hE do this to heR? ShE deserved none of it.


Things weren’t supposed to happen this way. Drutho was created to aid Eizenara, not fall in love with heR.


Drutho should never have been given a demi-Mortal status. The power had corrupted hiS being beyond redemption, and shE was punished for that. It wasn’t fair.


But what was over was over. Now all The Eddie G. could do was to hope that shE wouldn’t hold hiS folly against hiM.


With the more daunting issues now thoroughly thought over, The Eddie G. now ascertained that hiS source of insomnia didn’t come from them.


Swearing and cursing, hE poked hiS head out of the tent.

“PUT A SOCK IN IT, GRAEKEN!!” hE yelled at the gargoyle sitting cross-legged under a sturdy oak tree, “YOU’VE BEEN AT IT EVER SINCE WE SET UP CAMP LAST NIGHT!!”

The gargoyle stirred from his trance.

“Woah dude, what time is it now, man?”

“Four-thirty in the bloody morning!”

“Chill, dude. I’ll be done in another hour.”

“ANOTHER HOUR?” The Eddie G. roared, “Dude, just because you don’t have to sleep doesn’t mean that others don’t either.”

“Dude, you can’t blame a guy for walking down the path of the Zen, can you?”

“Then why don’t you bugger off down this path, find yourself another tree not so near to mine and do your bloody owwwming there!”

“No can do dude, Feng Shui’s good here.”

Feng Shui my rotten rubber rump!” snapped The Eddie G., “look man, here’s fifty bucks. That should provide all the damned Feng Shui you need. What I need now, is some sleep, so take the bread and beat it!”

“Sorry dude, but your worldly currencies are nothing compared to Universal Oneness.”

“Hey don’t get uppity on me, twerp! You pick your stony ass up right now and take it somewhere else before I get –”


The Eddie G. returned to hiS tent and rummaged through hiS belongings for a nice bludgeon. A saucepan made from Sterling Stainless Steel caught hiS eye. The script could not have been any better written.

The tent flapped opened once more as The Eddie G. strode purposefully towards the meditating gargoyle.


Having found universal oneness with the saucepan, Graeken stopped owwming.

The Eddie G. tottered back to hiS tent for some well-deserved sleep. There was plenty of dragon’s tears to get Graeken up and going when hE woke up. But as for now, hE was quite content that the strongest worldly currency was still, invariably, the Sterling Pound.


The Cyclops sat lounging by the fireplace. He sipped his tea slowly, looked thoughtfully at it for a moment, and proceeded to add a few lumps of sugar.

“Drink up, girly,” he said, “nothin’ beats a hot cuppa tea in such ill weather as dis.”

The girl looked at her cup, and then at the Cyclops. It was weird enough staring at something with one eye, but when it began to offer you tea, one surely had to question its intentions. This one was now staring intently at her, subconsciously giving her the choice of either drinking up or continue to have him stare at her like that.

She chose the lesser of two evils.

“Must I really meet this Prince?” she asked as she took a cautious sip.

The Cyclops chewed his lip. He didn’t know answer her. After all, he was merely following the Eddie G.’s instructions to take care of her until the designated moment arrived. That was easy enough. What he didn’t bank on though, was the girl to ask so many questions to which he knew not the answers to.

“It’s The Eddie G.’s wish dat you do,” he said finally.

Cyclopses normally don’t belong to the land of Teffaru, mostly-two-eyed Teffaru. This one, though, was abandoned by his parents at a very young age at the border near Mad Squirrel Range, and The Eddie G. took it upon himselF to nurture and train him in combat. It was move that paid huge dividends, for the Cyclops now served hiM faithfully and unquestioningly.

“But what if I don’t like this Prince?” she asked.

The Cyclops hummed thoughtfully for a moment or two, and the merely shrugged. So inquisitive, this girl he thought to himself so much alike dear Eizenara. He wasn’t too surprised though, seeing that she was created by hiM after all.

“De Prince is a nice chap, really,” he replied, “little on the stupid side, but nice nonetheless. You’ll like him.”

The girl smiled. “Where is he by the way?”

“Waitin’ outside.”

“But it’s raining so heavily outside!” she gasped.

“Bugger that, you’re right!” the Cyclops said, sitting up suddenly, “I’d better take in de clothes!”


The rain was coming down in torrents while The Eddie G. and Graeken sat patiently in a small crevice. In hiS entire existence, it had never occured to The Eddie G. that while hiS cherubic wings made hiM look imposing and fearsome, it was pretty much as useless in the rain as shelter would be for a gargoyle.

But that was an analogy which Graeken had failed to grasp.

"What in Teffaru's name are you doing here anyway, you inconsiderate turd?" The Eddie G. spat. In small crevices as such, space was low in supply, and Graeken owned most of it, leaving the demi-Mortal's wings out in the open for a generous dose of drenching.

The leader of the gargoyles looked up at hiM momentarily, said nothing, and went back to rolling his joint.

When The Eddie G. continued hiS penetrating stare, the gargoyle looked up briefly before saying, "Dude, I need to get my fix."


"See? So what are you complaining about, dude?"

It wasn't long before prolonged exposure to the rain started giving The Eddie G. fitful bouts of sneezing. But the prolonged exposure to the smoke made hiM realize, for the first time in hiS existence, that getting pneumonia could actually be something rather amusing.


Four heads and a Scrubbie poked out from behind a pillar. Everything seemed normal. Everything, that is, save for the pillar. There it stood, in its monstrosity, giving testimony to the fact that Mother Nature too could wake up on the wrong side of bed. It was those kind of pillars that, if people would actually bother to run around just once a day, would put Richard Simmons, Dr. Atkins and a whole lot of other such simians sorely out of business. The owners of the heads (and the Scrubbie if you’d care to pay attention to triviality) swiveled around as they surveyed their current surroundings before their bodies felt safe enough to leave the comfort of the pillar.

“So what did you see?” said one

“Couldn’t tell. The Fool’s dumb hat was in the way.” grunted another

"Scrubbie is not dumb!" retorted the third, who also happened to be a Jester, "She is a sophisticated and beautiful creature."

"Eh, I never knew that Scrubbie was a she." said Kalmbie, one of the two most incompetent castle guards in Teffaru, exquisite Teffaru.

Muffled snickering emerged from the far end of the pillar.

"That's because you never bothered to ask."

"I see," Bosch, the other half of the two most incompetent guards, had snorted. "So does Scrubbie have a *cough* boyfriend?"

The snickering now betrayed traces of efforted muffling, with the occasional snort.

"Well... actually she does. But it's not me."

Like a river bursting through a rickety dam built by sick beavers, the snickering gave way unashamed guffaws from behind the far end before two giant man-eating squirrels rolled into view, stomachs clutched and faces contorted like that of a man who found his particular encounter with food poisoning to be an extremely funny one.

"Trying... to... hehe... escape eh?... hohoho," gasped Furcoat, the older of the two squirrels.

"Heh heh... I'll teach you... *snort*... to try and... *snicker*... escape from us again!" said the younger, whose name happened to be Mink.

"Don't bother, we already know how," Drego Cauldwick, the Editor of a crudely named newspaper and the fourth member of Scrubbie's party (fifth, if you count her), before taking to his heels.

"You guys coming or not?"

Like obedient mongrels, the other three followed suit sprinting down the cavernous passageways in most comical fashion. It didn't take too long for them to realize that despite Drego Cauldwick's huge bulk, he was nonetheless pretty damn fast. But that was the way it is in Teffaru, squirrely Teffaru. Atheletic prowess was a prerequisite for journalism around these parts; that and, judging from the size of the projectiles people hurl at you, an incredible sense of balance. How Drego then had managed to attain his bulk can be based on the common assumption that any journalist who'd survived so long to become Editor surely wouldn't be begrudged a few crummy doughnuts.

And he still got caught. Talk about bad news!

The squirrels were now hot on their trail, but the laughing had yet to subside and that slowed their progress significantly. The Fleeing Four, headed by the lumbering Drego Cauldwick, had hit a fair turn of speed by the time they rounded the corner.

"You think we should split up?" said Bosch, "we'd be much harder to catch then."

"No," huffed Drego without looking back, "unity is one of the two key points of survival. Take it from a journalist!"

"But won't we all get caught together?" said Kalmbie worriedly.

"Not while there's two of them and four of us. And that brings me to the second key point."

"And what is that?"

"You only have to run faster than the slowest party member."


Many by now would have had forgotten the bookkeeper who used to make a killing around Castle Blackrock, solely because he used to make a killing around Castle Blackrock. And that was because the geese that laid his golden eggs were currently on sabbitcal, trying to outrun each other somewhere in the cavernous passages beneath the Mad Squirrel Range. It had affected his business gravely, and only one little detail kept him from folding.

As he sat moping over his misfortunes, the bookkeeper was reminded of a story in ancient folklore of an old man who had built a ship large enough to house pairs of all the different animals in. Needles to say, he was brutally ridiculed, but only up to the point when it started raining non-stop for forty days. Because of his foresight, that blessed old man managed to keep his assets afloat while Teffaru was in liquidation. Everything thereafter went swimmingly, regardless of your perspective.

Except for the turtles, who were used by the apes for a good few rounds of shuffleboard.

The bookkeeper stirred from his melancholy to see the familiar figure of Greatly Gullible Gordon headed his way.

"Morning Gordon," he said wearily.

"Oh good morning!" greeted Gordon, "What shall we bet on today?"

A malicious grin spread across the face of the bookkeeper. As long as Greatly Gullible Gordon was around, his ricebowl was still intact, though just barely. Every day without fail, the bookkeeper would mercilessly exploit Gordon for his daily bread by convincing him that if he'd bet on something improbable enough, the law of averages would one day bring him a really sweet payoff. The Sky Falling On Our Heads was a particular favourite of Gordon's. And the bookkeeper made sure that it stayed that way.

"Oh, why not stick with the usual," said he, "the payoff is still one is to one million."

"Oh goody," said Greatly Gullible Gordon, "I'll put five dollars to that."

"Excellent!" the bookkeeper smiled. "You might already be a winner!"

"I hope so," Gordon grinned, and went his way.

"Oh and more thing!" the bookkeeper called out, "make sure you don't tell anyone, else they'll want in on it too!"


The Eddie G. sneezed. Getting hiS wings out of the rain was challenging enough, but getting the rain out of hiS wings was a whole new different ball game. The fire crackled softly as hE stood with his back facing it. And from the look of things, they would probably take an hour or so to dry.

"Don't stare at me like that, dude," whistled Graeken innocently, "I didn't do jack."

"You're not going to do a whole lot more once I'm through with you!" The Eddie G. growled.

"Hey, look on the bright side man."

"And that would be?"

"You didn't get pneumonia." Graeken grinned.

"Oh, *sneeze* off!"


They halted at a criss-cross of interconnecting passages.

"Where now?" panted Kalmbie.

"This way!" Drego said and took a right turn. The others followed without question.

"You know, if I get out of this alive, no one's going to believe what we've gone through," muttered Bosch.

"Yes but if you don't get out of this alive, they will!" snapped the Editor, "now keep moving!"

"S'funny," Kalmbie said after a while, "the Fool has been awfully quiet this whole time."

"Yea Sunny-Jeebs, Kalmbie's got a point there," hummed Bosch thoughtfully, "why don't you sing us something to cheer us up. Sunny? Sunny?"

For the first time in a long while, the party took the gamble of looking back, but the Jester was nowhere to be found.


Much sneezing, swearing and cursing later, The Eddie G. sighed.

"I wonder what I'm gonna tell Eizenara when we're finally reunited," said hE.

"Geez dude, just tell heR what you've been wanting to tell heR, s'all."

"Would that be enough? I mean, it's because of me that shE's in this state, you know. I'd be lucky if shE doesn't hate me for this."

"Dude, you're jumping the gun here man. Just take things one step at the time. When the time comes, you'll probably find the rights words to say," said Graeken the Wise Owwwming Gargoyle.

"Yea, but what kind of right words?"

"I know!" there was a deliberate pause, and then, "your wings are on fire."

"Why the hell would I want to say that?"

"No, no. Your wings are on fire!"

In the blink of an eye:

  • The Chronicles of Teffaru: Episode 1

  • The Chronicles of Teffaru: Episode 2

  • The Chronicles of Teffaru: Episode 3

  • The Chronicles of Teffaru: Episode 3;Part II

  • The Chronicles of Teffaru: Episode 4
  • Ye who seek for audience, let ye speak now!

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