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Library: Willy, the Poor Goblin (Pt.2)

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Author: xortan
Date:Mar 16 2004

As the battered adventurers tended their wounds around the campfire, Xortan
the Bard settled himself on a mossy tree stump, sang a powerful healing song,
and then proceeded with a diverting tale...

"It happened during the brief reign of the infamous King Sharn," Xortan
began...

"Whatcha mean, brief rain?," Norbert the Barbarian interrupted. "Dint ya say,
the other night, that Sharn's kingdom suffered from a turrible unbroken
drought?"

Xortan raised one eyebrow and turned a sidelong glance toward his
none-too-subtle companion-at-arms. "Indeed, my friend, no water fell from the
skies during Sharn's days upon the throne..."

"However, just after the hated king's mysterious assassination, those
remaining guild leaders who'd evaded summary execution at his whim did, in
fact, chop his royal corpse into mince-meat, flinging the parts from the
window of his tower, which parts did appear, as they fell upon the peasants
below, to be a form of ghastly precipitation... But i digress..."

"For my current tale concerns not the ill-fated Sharn, whose antics were ably
enacted onstage by my esteemed colleagues Elurin and Nyriori..."

"No, tonight, I speak again of the lowly goblin-kind who lurked in the swamp
near the outskirts of Sharn's erstwhile kingdom..."

"Now, some may already know of one such goblin, for I have sung of him far and
wide, and even published the first part of his saga in Batcity's venerable
library. (see index 771)"

"But to briefly recount that tale of woe, Willy, the poor goblin, was victim
of a bizzare accidental dismemberment, when, dizzy from hunger, he snared his
own private parts in the loop of his heretofore-trusted fishing string, and
with a voracious chomp emasculated himself, dropping his unattached member as
he opened wide his mouth to screech in pain and horror."

Xortan paused a moment for a puff upon his pipe, while the male party members
shuddered and shook their heads...

"Imagine, then, Willy's additional dismay as he fumbled to retrieve his
goblinhood, only to see it snatched from his trembling fingers by a huge
cunning carp fish, which darted away with its prize beneath the slime and
bracken in the stagnant shallows of the drought-stricken bog!"

"Although perhaps there might be found some Mighty Wizard who could be
implored to magically re-attach the severed part, Willy wondered, How could
this be done if said part was nowhere to be found??"

"After thrashing about the muck long moments in vain search for the thieving
fish, our poor goblin, nearly overcome by embarrassment and blood-loss, was
forced to admit he needed first aid."

"Luckily, a hedge-wizard lived nearby, and was able to patch Willy up, but
also to provide him with a makeshift divining rod that purportedly pointed in
the general direction of the departed 'item'."

"And so, our hapless hero set off in search of his 'John Thomas,' hoping
against hope that it remained viable, or that failing to retrieve it in usable
condition, he could, at least, exact vengence upon the Carp that had made off
with it..."

---

"Meanwhile, all was chaos in Sharn's now-rulerless city. Mid-level
guild-members, without proper guidance, fought tooth and nail, up and down the
streets and alleys, battling each other and the military, each supposing the
other was somehow at fault for the general mayhem."

"After several days, the rioting died down some, and Major Cornwall, senior
remaining member of the armed forces, gathered his meager troops and began to
reassign them duties, with an eye towards law and order."

"Cornwall soon realized that recruitment was sorely needed, if there were to
be enough squadrons to patrol properly, as so many of the rank and file had
deserted or been killed in the fighting. He therefore promoted, to the rank of
Sergeant and Squadron Leader, several soldiers who'd shown intelligence and
valor during the times of trouble."

"One such new squad leader was a grizzled goblin named Glirk, who was,
coincidentally, eighth cousin (twice removed) to Willy, our crippled
protagonist."

"Glirk easily was able to entice some several dozen of his poor goblin
relations into service, with the promise not only of fish rations thrice
weekly, but of actual canvas sacks in which to carry the left-overs. (By now,
the fate of Willy, whose bad luck had begun when he attempted to store his
fish in his pants, was well known throughout the swampland.)"

"Sergeant Glirk cannily instructed his goblins to fish, when off duty, not
with string loops, but only with their standard-issue military spears,
reasoning that a goblin would have to be impossibly well-endowed to threaten
his own genitalia with the business-end of such a lengthy implement."

"Having addressed this vital issue of public safety, Glirk felt certain his
recruits would survive at least long enough to be promoted from private to
corporal, and that the best among them might even someday earn commands of
their own."

"He divided them into three sub-squads, so that two groups could take turns on
patrol, while the third group was off duty."

"Unfortunately for the first sub-squad, the recent drought had wreaked havoc
with the local food chain, leaving all manner of creatures starving and
desperate."

"On its very first night of patrol, the entire first goblin sub-squadron was
ambushed by a skinny hill-giant, who scooped them up, ate several, then
carried the rest back to his lair, where he could devour them at his leisure."

"The second sub-squad, sent to locate their missing fellows, found no clue,
for the giant had crunched up even the very bones to suck the marrow, and had
absconded with the various scraps of clothing, as well as the canvas
fish-sacks, to serve as makeshift dinner napkins and placemats, collecting
finally the abandoned spears to use as toothpicks."

"Upon hearing the report of the baffled second sub-squad, Sergeant Glirk made
his way to Headquarters, and requested permission to go personally in search
of his lost troops, since a veteran of his proven abilities should fare better
at such an endeavor than would a large bunch of frightened and barely-trained
privates."

"Major Cornwall reluctantly agreed, and ordered the remaining goblins
redistributed among the city's other squadrons so that Glirk's search could
proceed unhampered. Cornwall also sent runners ahead to instruct watch-tower
and garrison commanders to assist the Sergeant if possible."

---

"Now, all this time, poor cousin Willy had been clambering about on the trail
of the elusive carp who had swiped his pecker. Following the tug of his
enchanted divining rod this way and that, Willy had nearly given up hope, his
mood anything but improved by the snickers, hoots, and dervisive laughter that
met his inquiries and explanations."

"And so, when the divining stick pointed toward a rickety watch-tower near the
banks of a dusty stream-bed, Willy sighed with little enthusiasm. Nonetheless,
the tired and wounded goblin trudged up to the tower, girding himself for yet
another round of sad and fruitless entreaties."

" 'Excuse me, good fellows,' Willy addressed the bedraggled soldiers who
manned the tower, 'but i was wondering if you could help me... You see, i'm
looking for my privates, which were lost in the...' "

" 'Sir! Yes, Sir!,' they shouted in unison . 'We done heard all about it and
are ready and prepared to offered assistance, Sir!' they exclaimed loudly."

"Willy gaped, stammered and finally fell silent as the small band of soldiers
snapped to attention and then swept him up amongst them, all but carrying him
into the tower's meagre yet welcome shade, where they offered him a mug of
warm ale, along with stale biscuits and roast grasshopper."

" 'Why are they so friendly and helpful?,' Willy couldn't help but wonder,
having no way to suspect he'd been mistaken for his cousin, Sergeant Glirk..."

"When the refreshments had been consumed with gusto, the lone corporal, whose
eagle eye won him frequent duty as look-out atop the tower, approached the
honored goblin guest, saluted smartly, and gave the following report:"

" 'Sir! The results of our investigations, Sir! Some privates was indeed
observed in the near vicinity just yesterday, Sir! We believe that the
privates in question was in the custody of a giant what lives in the nearby
hills, Sir!,' the corporal continued, pointing out the precise hills
involved."

" 'As this here giant is a known and dangerous marauder, Sir, we has been
awaitin' reinforcements, which, until your arrival, was not forthcoming, Sir!
"

"Willy's mind boggled... 'Why..Why..That's incredible!,' he exclaimed..
'But..But..What about the carp?' "

" 'Well, hrm, hm, yes, the carp..,' replied the corporal uncertainly.. 'We,
er, well, not to be pessimistic, Sir, but of course it's well known Giants
thrive on fish when there's a convenient supply, and, well, on account of the
drought, ya see, we suspect the Giant may have taken to, um, eating the
privates instead...Sir.' "

" 'Nooooo!!!,' Willy wailed, 'So close.. So close...' and then suddenly his
tortured mind snapped."

" 'Cruel Fate be Damned!!,' he yelled in a berserk fury, wrenching the spear
from the corporal's grasp. The stunned soldiers recovered their startled wits
moments later and followed on Willy's heels as he ran madly towards those self
same hills, and straight towards the giant's lair."

"Leaping and plunging over rocks and mud-clumps helter-skelter, Willy burst in
upon the giant just as the latter gave a huge belch and wiped his lips with a
tattered fabric shred, having consumed the last of his captured food supply.
'Aiieeeee!!!,' the goblin screamed dementedly, 'Eat MY privates, will you?
Well, see how you like a taste of your own medicine!' "

"Jamming the point of his borrowed spear into the dirt for leverage, Willy
vaulted insanely upwards, launching himself at the giant's groin, in a savage
biting attack. Startled as much by the sudden clamour as by the sharp pains in
his personal parts, the giant stumbled and fell backwards."

"This allowed the troopers, who were but a few meters behind Willy, to stab
the giant repeatedly with their remaining spears, causing its rapid demise in
a manner that would have been quite unlikely had it not been for the element
of surprise."

"Still oblivious to the mistake in identity, none of them dared restrain the
gibbering Willy from a grotesque amateur autopsy which, of course, revealed
from within the dead giant's stomach, SEVERAL sets of private goblin parts,
all quite worse for the wear, and NONE of them seeming particularly familiar."


"Fortunately, at that very moment, Sergeant Glirk, too, found himself at the
end of the twisted trail, having traced the giant, finally, more by following
Willy's mad hysterical laughter than by using the sharp wits that, to be quite
honest, only ran along the one side of the family."

"Glirk mercifully silenced his poor cousin for a refreshing nap (with a deft
spear-haft rap to the noggin), and ordered the confused watch troopers to
carry the lad carefully back to town."

"Willy was, after all, a hero, having led the attack upon the giant. He was
therefore promptly inducted to the re-formed 'sack and spear' squadron, then
immediately promoted (to avoid any further 'private' jokes) and assigned to
headquarters (where he could presumably be kept out of trouble)."


---

"So he gave up the search and settled down to millitary life?," Norbert asked
pensively, as Xortan fell silent and stared for a time into the embers of the
campfire...

"Well....not exactly," the bard finally admitted. "He seemed to recover well
enough to serve as messenger and assistant to Major Cornwall, but he could
never truly forget what he had lost.. And as the days went by, he began to
wonder.. 'All those goblin parts in the giant's stomach.. what if.. though I
couldn't find my own among them.. could a powerful enough Wizard not attach
someone else's in its stead?' "

"And seeing as how the succession to Sharn's throne was a bit unsettled in
those latter days, and seeing as how various bits of Sharn, (which, as you
might recall, had been flung from the tower window), might just have been
secreted away by some one of the peasants below, as a kind of 'souvenier,' you
might say..."

"And seeing as how one of the applicants for the position of 'Court Advisor'
at that time was an unsavory fellow known as 'Bobbitt the Hobbit,' who had
suffered a similar disfigurement, at the hands of his own estranged wife,
Lorena..."

"Ahh, but that, my friends...," Xortan chuckled wryly as he placed another log
on the fire, "...is another story..."


--- The End, For Now... ---

(Thank you for reading!)


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