Philbin

Glad you could join us for the next confusing episode of Elliot’s Adventures. If you’re new here, you can catch up by returning to the beginning, and reading really fast…

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Photo credit: Gail Shumway

Janesse filled Prince Elliot in on the current situation in central Fen and left him in a hastily organized camp surrounded by lush greenery far enough inside the Northern border that he couldn’t hear the fighting. A young soldier named Philbin showed him to the empty command post and volunteered to answer any questions he might have.

“Why did the King send for me?” Elliot asked.

“I don’t know,” Philbin admitted. “That’s above my pay grade.”

“Are there any officers I could talk with right now?”

The soldier looked around. “I don’t see any.”

“Where is the supply distribution area?”

“It’s around here someplace,” Philbin said.

Elliot rubbed his temples. “Might I get something to eat while I wait?”

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Sergeant Bufo

Glad you could join us for the next stringent episode of Elliot’s Adventures. If you’re new here, you can catch up by returning to the beginning, and reading really fast…

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Photo credit: David Gray

“Hold on there, Jeremy!” A heavy voice rolling from a wide-mouthed toad on her way down the steps stopped him. “The prisoner stays right there. Go get the Queen’s Liaison.”

Jeremy hopped to it.

Sergeant Marina Bufo was a commanding presence. Even larger than the Crone, she filled the confined space with the illusion that Duggla had no air of her own to breathe.

“So you’ve got something to say, huh?” Sergeant Bufo asked.

“Not to you,” the Crone mumbled taking shallow, suffocated breaths.

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In Your Dreams

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Photo credit: tt.mop.com

Pressing her tongue firmly against the roof of her mouth, Duggla crushed the crispy-crunchy shell to savor the seeping succulence of the Assassin’s juicy guts. Devouring him satisfied so much more than just her hunger, she was almost reluctant to swallow. It was a transcendent experience. But shouts rumbling down to the dungeon broke through her dream, waking her to the dank dimness of her cell.

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Special Delivery

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Photo credit: Frans Lanting

Teddy had given up trying to fly as soon as Janesse vanished beyond the trees. “Daddy, is Prince Elliot going to the war?”

“Yes, he is.”

“Why?”

“King Arnie needs him there.”

“Is he scared?”

“Probably. At least a little.”

Darwin stopped jumping and scrunched his face in puzzlement. “He can’t be scared. My mom says everybody in the war is brave.”

“She’s right,” Randall confirmed. “But she knows wars are scary and everyone who goes is scared but they go anyway. That’s how she knows they’re brave.”

“Why would they go if they’re scared?” his son asked. “They might get hurt.”

“They might get dead, too,” Darwin said gleefully, “but everybody would know they were cowards if they didn’t go.”

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The Message

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Photo credit: Justin Owings

The Crone’s windowless cell in Fen’s lockup allowed her to take one step in any direction before bumping into a wall or a gate of narrowly spaced bars. Anger and contempt seething in her gut, she didn’t hear the stealthy scratch of clawed feet creeping down the rough hewn stairway leading from the jail above to the shadow-filled dungeon she occupied.

She jumped, bumping her head on the low ceiling, at the honeyed whisper in the dark.

“Good evening, Madam Duggla. I come with a message from the General.”

Gasping, the Crone spread her bulk against the back wall as far from the bars as it was possible to be.

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Flying Janesse

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Photo credit: Congok

Spending his last few minutes in Bog reviewing the responsibilities his deputy would shoulder, Elliot was confident nothing would suffer under Randall’s watchful eye.

“Do you have someone in mind to send with the shipment, sir?” the frog asked.

“No, I’ll leave that to you.”

Their faces a matched set of solemnity, Darwin and Teddy marched in step up the path.

“Halt!” Teddy cried. “Knight Trevor reporting with news, sir.”

“Hey,” Darwin objected, “you were Trevor last time. It’s my turn!”

“All right, but he’s my daddy, so I still get to say the news.”

“Okay,” Darwin agreed leaping with all eight legs splayed, over a knee-high rock in his best imitation of an airborne frog.

“What’s your news, Master Knight?” Randall asked.

Brow furrowed in concentration, Teddy saluted. “The Prince’s Flyer is here, sir!”

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Maneuvers

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Image credit: TutKnow.ru / amwo / S.T. Ranscht

Winded by her emergency run to Bog, Chloe had a powerful thirst.

Approaching a young frog playing stick-battle with an aggressive young spider among stacks of folded webbing, she caught her breath to ask, “Sweetie, can you tell me where Prince Elliot is?”

The spider used the distraction to smack his stick against his opponent’s belly. “Ha!” he crowed. “That means I killed you! I’m the greatest Knight in the Kingdom!”

“Hey, calm down, Darwin, we’re not supposed to hurt each other.” Rubbing his stomach, Teddy turned to the Runner. “I don’t know, but my daddy does. Do you want me to go get him?” Continue reading “Maneuvers”