What is this? A blog post outside of the now-usual Monday slot? Worry not, my fine people, for this is merely a new announcement of my latest activity: Random Fridays.
Allow me to explain...
The aim is to write a short story of at least 500 words within 60 minutes. The content is randomly generated using the rules below. Only five minutes maximum is to be spent thinking/planning what should be written.
The point of view, genre and subject matter shall be decided on the roll of a dice or random word generator according to the following template:
Even number = First person
Odd number = Third person
1 = Horror
2 = Thriller
3 = Romance
4 = Science Fiction
5 = Fantasy
6 = Comedy
Randomly select two nouns and an adjective. These should be used to inform the content of the story.
Random Fridays is an activity I shall attempt each and every Friday, (shocking, no?) Each one shall be written within an hour, will have minimal editing and shall be posted as is. They'll probably all be awful but the idea is to stimulate ze little grey (creativity) cells and encourage me to write more and worry less, number 3 on my New Year's Revolutions.
This is Frisk,
POV: First person
Subject: Regret, teaching & pathetic
The shaft of the staff spun as it fell. The crack resonated across the courtyard followed shortly by the anguished cries of the inevitable pain. Yet another boy fell awkwardly to the ground. He lay writhing on the cobbles only momentarily before the others swiftly pulled him to his feet. They made sure to keep their eyes on me as they hauled the patient away; as if I were some form of monster.
Much to the chagrin of my usual restraint I released a heavy sigh and placed two fingers against my forehead, massaging the wrinkled skin. ‘Next,’ I said. My voice no doubt carried a hint of my weariness but I spoke loudly enough to convey the idea that I was in no way ready to accept such mediocrity.
Another boy stepped forward, his uneven and clumsy gait betraying the hesitance his tensed face was trying desperately to suppress. He stood before me and bowed so low and with so much enthusiasm that for a moment I believed he would knock himself out on the ground before he even had chance to swing. The boy arranged his legs into a configuration I can only assume was his interpretation of a combat stance and readied his own staff.
I held back, as ever I do, and swung with only a fraction of my speed and force. I felt clumsy and unbalanced. This movement was slow and alien to me; I could feel every opening and was made starkly aware of the mistakes I was making. Is this how it was to fight like them? Is this the sensation they experienced right before their failure? I had barely time to process this thought when I found my staff to be cutting through air. I had made but two strokes and rendered my current opponent inert against the stone.
The boy sat up. He clutched his head and groaned. A stream of crimson blood pooled at his fingertips and steadily ran its course down his forehead and cheek. He pulled his hand away shakily to inspect the damage. He paled at the sight of the blood and turned a shade paler than he and his weak-willed companions already were. Then he passed out. The usual few boys returned to retrieve their fallen ally. Their faces darkened with each casualty. The look they gave me was intense; if only they could channel that into their fighting.
I looked over the small crowd that stood before me. Most of them had been defeated so, in fact, very few actually remained standing. They were mere boys, all of them; not a one over the age of fourteen. Perhaps their previous tutor was not so strict on them; perhaps they had not yet learned the disciplines required to fight an armed opponent. What ever the reason for their incompetence, it had left them weak and useless. How was I to work with such a force? How could we ever hope to drive back the armies that hounded our borders with soldiers that looked upon their own with such contempt and fear? This passion should be reserved for our enemies not for me.
And yet this is my role, my purpose, to provide the conflict needed to force their hands. What other option is there? Should we send these poor souls to the fields of battle with nought but desperation and survival on their minds? No, they need more than that; nothing short of a pure fury to triumph will be enough to win this war. If I should pummel them daily, inflict lasting wounds, bore in them such deep seated shame and hatred that one day they land even a single blow against me, then I shall have served my purpose. Perhaps not well, but served it shall be.
‘Again,’ I commanded, beckoning the next child forward as I readied my staff.