Three Word Thursday #52

Welcome to Three Word Thursday #52. Please join us in our weekly romp as we try to rescue lost and forgotten words from the dusty halls of antiquity. If you enjoy reading my story, leave a comment then click on the names of the other players and go see how they used these bygone words. You’ll be entertained (and possibly educated) all at once.

This is my story.  All the other players posted theirs last week.  I have added the Mr. Linky below in case you didn’t all visit one another.  Enjoy!

The Words:

  • gardyloo, interjection. a call used in warning; perhaps from French garde à l’eau! look out for the water!
  • swoopstake, adv. in an indiscriminate manner
  • wanion, n. unlucky

The story in full.

From episode #51:

“We buried and burned everything at the cabin so the mage warriors wouldn’t be able to find us through a possession which contained our aura,”  Vernal said.

“But they’ve found something of yours just the same?” Chevall asked.

“Worse,” Vernal said.  “I gave it to them.

What!”  Evaard exclaimed.  “When?”

“When I killed Fronesk, he took a piece of my soul forever.”

“Yes,” Chevall said.  “Taking someone else’s life always forfeits just a bit of your own.  That is true.”

“According to Threfal,” Vernal explained, “Fronesk claimed my bit of soul not in his own name to prolong his own life, but in the of his commander.”

“Ronald?”  Evaard said.  “But he, too, is dead.”

Vernal shook his head.  “Both Ronald and Fronesk were commanded by the Mage King.  He has a piece of my soul.  Threfal says that when I sleep, which I must, the Mage King will be able to control my actions.  You must protect yourselves from me.”

~*~

“In order to sleep, we will have to tie Vernal up,” Chevall said.

“Boy,”  Evaard put his hand on Vernal’s shoulder.  “I fear it was your wanion day when the king made you my page.”

“Not so,” Vernal said.  He stepped away from Evaard’s hand.  “I fear it was your wanion day when you were given me. I have brought nothing but trouble.”

“You did not bring the trouble,” Cheval said.  “It was brewing long before you or Evaard earned your ranks.  Sir Driscomb died fighting the Mage Warriors.  In retrospect, I imagine he encountered them stealing the dragon eggs.  At his death all of the Knights below him in rank advanced.  I became the 11th Knight of Strawberry Fife, leaving the 12th position open for Evaard.”

“Then I stumbled upon the intrigue and began investigating in a very swoopstake manner.  At every step I intended to take my concerns to the King, but there always seemed to be just one more thing to do first, and now we have come to this.  I have put my own page in grave danger.”

Vernal scoffed, “One cannot serve a battle warrior and expect always to be safe.”

“That is so,” Chevall said.  “And look, at least your page is still conscious.”  He pointed at Fencil, who moved restlessly in his fevered sleep.

Gardyloo! Gardyloo!”  The call echoed up the cannon. Evaard and Chevall reached for their swords and moved toward the overhanging willow branches.

Vernal pulled his sword as well.  “I know who hails us,” he said.  “Do not answer.  And do not turn your back on me.”

Evaard turned to look at his page.  Vernal trembled violently. “You shall die!” He roared and his brown eyes flashed silver.  “I-I-I can’t c-control him!”  Vernal appeared to be fighting against himself.

“Drop the sword,”Chevall said softly.

“I cannot!”  Vernal answered.  Again his eyes flashed silver and he lunged toward Evaard.

~*~

The 3WT #53 words will be:

  • delenda: n.  things to be erased or blotted out
  • imbroglio: n. an intricate and perplexing state of affairs; a complicated or difficult situation.
  • tantivy: adj. swift, rapid

Got it? Good! In that case: Your story is due on: May 6th, 2010
Enjoy!

Three Word Thursday #51

Welcome to Three Word Thursday #51. Please join us in our weekly romp as we try to rescue lost and forgotten words from the dusty halls of antiquity. If you enjoy reading my story, leave a comment then click on the names of the other players and go see how they used these bygone words. You’ll be entertained (and possibly educated) all at once.

The Words:

  • uberate, v. — make plentiful or nourish
  • snilch, v. — to eye someone or something
  • accidie, n. sloth, tupor
  • incompossible: Not capable of joint existence; incompatible; inconsistent
  • thropple: strangle
  • noctambule, v. sleepwalk

The story in full.

From episode #50:

“Real bandage!”  Evaard exclaimed.  “Where did you get this?”

Vernal said, “From the palace acersecomic after he blessed me as your page.  He put his hands upon my head and had a vision.  Afterward he handed me these bandages and told me to keep them always in my possession until you stated their need.”

“Well, well,” Cheval said, “it seems we have both woodwort and holy bandages.  Fencil may be up and running by morn!”

Unexpected Ally, Unexpected Enemy

Evaard built a tiny fire with a flame barely big enough to bring a cup of water to boil. Chevall dropped several slices of the woodwort in to steep.

Evaard dug through a satchel and retrieved a cloth wrapped bundle. “Dried venison,” he said. “I wish we could risk a cooking fire. I have had enough salted meat to preserve my gut from the inside out.”

“We wouldn’t have risked even this much fire if we hadn’t needed the uberating tea for Fencil,” Chevall said.

Vernal jumped to his feet. “Are you certain?” He exclaimed.

Chevall and Evaard exchanged a look. Vernal was facing the shadows at the rear of the cave. Evaard snilched the darkness, but saw nothing remarkable. “Are we certain of what?” He asked Vernal.

Vernal pointed at the blank wall. “Threfal says that we can build a bonfire if we wish. The willow tree will defuse the smoke and the curve of the ravine will conceal any glow that might escape our thicket, plus, the nearest mage warrior is over five miles away.”

Evaard immediately added twigs to the small fire and blew gently on the flame.  Chevall stared intently at the back wall of the cave.  “Vernal,” he said.  “You realize that Threfel isn’t really there?  What you’re hearing is mind speak.”

“I am hearing mind speak,” Vernal agreed.  “But Threfel is just beyond that wall.  He said the entire mountain is riddled with caverns and he can travel mile upon miles without ever stepping outside.”

“And he is certain we are well hidden?” Chevall asked.

Vernal nodded.  “He is certain.”

“Good,” Chevall answered.  “I am going to clean Fencil’s wound.  If he cries out, no one will hear him.”  Chevall lifted the cup to Fencil’s lips and fed him several sips of the woodwort, then he dipped a bit of bandage in the potion and pressed it against Fenci’l’s thigh.  The boy moaned but did not wake from his accidie.

Evaard continued building up the fire, and removed a packet of vegetables from the satchel.  He pulled a knife from his belt and began slicing them into a pot of water.  He added a handful of the dried venison as well.  “In no time at all we’ll have a nice stew.”

Vernal looked at him in surprise.  “Sir Evaard!”  He exclaimed, “I am supposed to be cooking for you!”

“Battle situations often make assigned duties irrelevant and incompossible. I know how to make a fast trail stew, therefore I am making it. You can roll out the bedrolls. If Threfel is correct and we are alone in the ravine, then no one will have to stand watch tonight.”

Vernal went still and his face paled.  He turned from the back wall and faced Evaard.  “Threfel says you will still have to stand guard tonight to keep from getting throppled in your sleep by a noctambulator.”

“Fencil?”  Chevall queried.  “I think the drug will keep him down.”

“Not Fencil,” Vernal said.  “Me.”

“You?!”  Evaard exclaimed in surprise.  “Whatever are you talking about?”

“We buried and burned everything at the cabin so the mage warriors wouldn’t be able to find us through a possession which contained our aura,”  Vernal said.

“But they’ve found something of yours just the same?” Chevall asked.

“Worse,” Vernal said.  “I gave it to them.

What!”  Evaard exclaimed.  “When?”

“When I killed Fronesk, he took a piece of my soul forever.”

“Yes,” Chevall said.  “Taking someone else’s life always forfeits just a bit of your own.  That is true.”

“According to Threfal,” Vernal explained, “Fronesk claimed my bit of soul not in his own name to prolong his own life, but in the name of his commander.”

“Ronald?”  Evaard said.  “But he, too, is dead.”

Vernal shook his head.  “Both Ronald and Fronesk were commanded by the Mage King.  He has a piece of my soul.  Threfal says that when I sleep, which I must, the Mage King will be able to control my actions.  You must protect yourselves from me.”

~*~

The 3WT #52 words will be:

Announced tomorrow (don’t let me forget!). Something inexplicable happened with my story. I was double checking it for errors about 2 hours ago, preparing to post, and it completely disappeared. No draft. No nothing. All my work gone. I rewrote the story, but I haven’t time to look up new words. i must go to bed.

UPDATE — The WORDS:

  • gardyloo, interjection.  a call used in warning;  perhaps from French garde à l’eau! look out for the water!
  • swoopstake, adv. in an indiscriminate manner
  • wanion, n. unlucky

Got it? Good! In that case: Your story is due on: April 22nd, 2010
Enjoy!

Three Word Thursday #50

Welcome to Three Word Thursday #49. Please join us in our weekly romp as we try to rescue lost and forgotten words from the dusty halls of antiquity. If you enjoy reading my story, leave a comment then click on the names of the other players and go see how they used these bygone words. You’ll be entertained (and possibly educated) all at once.

The Words:

  • acersecomic, n. — someone whose hair has never been cut
  • uberate, v. — make plentiful or nourish
  • snilch, v. — to eye someone or something

The story in full.

From episode #49:

“So if Threfel cannot leave the cave, that means you have been inside?”

“No,” Evaard said.  “As far as I know, no man alive can claim to have entered the cave and lived to tell of it.  Threfel met me just beyond the mouth of the cave and scared me righteous.”

Chevall said, “You went there to collect gems?”

Evaard answered, “Do not hesitate to vocitate the truth.  I went there to steal.”

“So did I,” came Vernal’s voice from the darkness beyond the the willow boughs.  He pushed through and into the cave.  “I have returned with no gems, but Threfel bid me bring you this cromack and this tuber. He reached into the pouch sewn on his tunic and brought forth the tuber.

“Woodwort!” Cheval exclaimed.

Unexpected Blessings

Chevall gave the woodwort a careful snilch.  “It is perfect,” he said, looking at Vernal.  “If  Threfel let you go and gifted you with the woodwort, then like as not King deMajik knows of our mission.”

“So we can press on the Dragon Falls and cross the rope bridge?”  Evaard asked.

Chevall shrugged.  “It seems so.  They’ve not come to stop us.” He soaked the hem of his tunic with water from his drinking bladder and scrubbed the woodwart tuber.  “Boil up a mug full of water.  I am going to seep a couple of slices of this tuber in the water.  We’ll treat Fencil from within and without and hopefully he will mend more quickly.”

“Woodwart will uberate his health in no time,” Evaard said.  “But we will need bandages to bind the root to the cut and we brought no spare tunics.”

Vernal reached into one of the packs and pulled out a ball of cloth. He tossed it to Evaard.

“Real bandage!”  Evaard exclaimed.  “Where did you get this?”

Vernal said, “From the palace acersecomic after he blessed me as your page.  He put his hands upon my head and had a vision.  Afterward he handed me these bandages and told me to keep them always in my possession until you stated their need.”

“Well, well,” Cheval said, “it seems we have both woodwort and holy bandages.  Fencil may be up and running by morn!”

~*~

The 3WT #51 words will be:

Chosen from any of the 2010 3WT words to date.

Got it? Good! In that case: Your story is due on: April 15th, 2010
Enjoy!

Three Word Thursday #49

Welcome to Three Word Thursday #48. Please join us in our weekly romp as we try to rescue lost and forgotten words from the dusty halls of antiquity. If you enjoy reading my story, leave a comment then click on the names of the other players and go see how they used these bygone words. You’ll be entertained (and possibly educated) all at once.

The Words:

The story in full.

From episode #48:

The dragon seemed to sigh. “Tell me son of Elun, have you the pride of your father, or your grandfather?”

Vernal answered, “I don’t know, but I fear I will never be the man my father was.”

Threfel stepped backward. His great, golden body disappeared into the foliage until only his head remained in the clearing with Vernal. “You are free to go, but first, see that plant there by your left foot? Grab it as close to the ground as you can and pull it up.”

Vernal did as he was bid without question. The plant stalk was fibrous, rough and as big around as his little finger. A good section of soil and a large root cluster lifted with the plant.

“That is woodwort,” Threfel said. “Pull one of the tubers and tuck it into your satchel, then tamp the plant back into the ground.

Again Vernal did exactly as he was bid, wondering if this was a test.

“It is no test,” Threfel answered his thoughts. “You are free to go. The path is wide and the moon is high so you should have no trouble finding your way. Even so, keep your eyes open for a cromack for you will have need of it tomorrow.” Then, in the blink of an eye, the great dragon was gone.

~*~

Vernal stood where the dragon left him, trying to wrap his mind around the fact that something so big could absquatulate so quickly.  “Go, boy,” Threfel thought spoke into his head.  “It is late.  Your friends are anxious.”  Vernal nodded even thought the dragon wasn’t there to see, then he turned and hurried down the path.

~*~

Evaard returned with an arm load of firewood, but the night was moonless and far too dark for him to identify one plant from another. “How is the boy,” he asked as he stepped into the cave. “I could find no woodwort.”

Chevall twitched the boy’s bedding aside to show Evaard the cut and swelling on the boy’s knee. “The cut is clearly from a sharpened instrument. I am guessing Fencil’s knife. He probably lanced the wound to remove whatever caused the initial infection. However, without woodwort to draw out the poison it will just grow worse. By morning it may have spread too far.”

Evaard said, “We could chance a torch, but if any of the mage warriors are nearby –”

Chevall shook his head. “Not yet, but it may come to that. What of Vernal? Did you find no sign?”

“It’s too dark to track,” Evaard said. “And if this is the ravine I think it is, the back entrance to the dragon cave is within an hour’s walk. The boy might have stumbled on it.”

“In which case he may never return,” Chevall said. “I have heard that the dragon, Threfel, has little mercy.”

“Threfel values honesty and integrity, and Vernal has both.” Evaard said. “On the other hand, he cares little for pride and Vernal can be prideful.”

Chevall stared at Evaard in surprise. “I thought Threfel was condemned to forever guard the Treasure cave?”

Evaard nodded. “King deMagik laid the malison on Threfel over 200 years ago when he was still an adolescent.  As a young dragon Threfel had an eye for things that glitter and sparkle, but since adolescent dragons are forbidden to fly beyond the boundaries of dragon hollow, he couldn’t collect his own treasures, so he stole from the other dragons.  As punishment, deMajik condemned him to guard the royal treasure.  It is said that he can no longer fly and is unable to venture more than a few feet beyond the cave.”

“So if Threfel cannot leave the cave, that means you have been inside?”

“No,” Evaard said.  “As far as I know, no man alive can claim to have entered the cave and lived to tell of it.  Threfel met me just beyond the mouth of the cave and scared me righteous.”

Chevall said, “You went there to collect gems?”

Evaard answered, “Do not hesitate to vocitate the truth.  I went there to steal.”

“So did I,” came Vernal’s voice from the darkness beyond the the willow boughs.  He pushed through and into the cave.  “I have returned with no gems, but Threfel bid me bring you this cromack and this tuber. He reached into the pouch sewn on his tunic and brought forth the tuber.

“Woodwort!” Cheval exclaimed.

~*~

The 3WT #50 words will be:

  • acersecomic, n. — someone whose hair has never been cut
  • uberate, v. — make plentiful or nourish
  • snilch, v. — to eye someone or something

Got it? Good! In that case: Your story is due on: April 8th, 2010
Enjoy!

Three Word Thursday #48

Welcome to Three Word Thursday #48. Please join us in our weekly romp as we try to rescue lost and forgotten words from the dusty halls of antiquity. If you enjoy reading my story, leave a comment then click on the names of the other players and go see how they used these bygone words. You’ll be entertained (and possibly educated) all at once.

The Words:

The story in full.

A Matter of Pride

Realizing that he was the mouse in a cat’s game, Vernal tried to clear his mind and relax. If the dragon found him no fun to bait, perhaps he would set him free.  He closed his eyes, bowed his head, and tried to concentrate only on the dark behind his eyelids.  He felt a nudge on his shoulder as the dragon snuffled his head.  “Your father tried that, too,” the laughing voice echoed inside him.

Vernal’s eyes popped open and he looked up at the dragon.  “You knew my da?”

~*~

Fencil lifted the tip of the knife to his tender thigh and pressed. He shuddered in pain.  His teeth sunk into the soft fibers of the driftwood stick he’d jammed in his mouth.  He whimpered as he made a small incision just below the Canterberry Thorn.  Once the incision was made he pressed on his flesh just above the thorn, fully expecting the barbs to pop free, instead the thorn broke to pieces.  Had he known it was fissiparous, Fencil would have automatically carved it from his flesh.  Now he would have to make certain every little piece was removed. He tore a strip of material from his tunic and reached for his canteen.

Once he’d scrubbed and bandaged his thigh, Fencil took a long drink from his thermos, piled the rest of the kindling on the fire, propped himself up against the cave wall, and wondered why Vernal hadn’t returned yet.

~*~

It was well after dark when Evaard and Chevall returned to the willow camp.  The fire had burned to embers and Fencil was fast asleep.  Chevall knelt by his young page and touched the boy on the shoulder. Fencil opened his eyes and blinked blurry-eyed at the knight.  “Why two of you?”  He asked, then his head dipped to the side as unconsciousness claimed him.

“He is suffering accidie,” Chevall said. “Get firewood.”  It was both command and request.  Evaard understood.  He nodded and left the enclosure. As well as firewood, they would need woodwort tubers to draw the poison from the boy’s wound.  Luckily the tree they’d camped under would supply willow bark to ease the child’s pain, finding woodwort in the dark would be a challenge.

Evaard focused first on gathering firewood.  He quickly filled his arms with fallen limbs and branches then returned to camp and ducked through the willow branches.  As he’d expected, Chevall had already peeled a strip of bark from the tree and was peeling away the soft red fibers beneath to make a pain relieving tea.

Evaard rekindled the fire as Chevall retrieved the cooking pot from the haversack beside the horse and filled it with water. “I’ll make tea for the boy first and our food after, ” Chevall said.

Evaard nodded his agreement.  “The sky is clear and the moon should be bright tonight.  I will look for woodwort.” He did not add that he would look for Vernal, but it was understood.

~*~

“Like you, like many others, your father came here looking for treasure,” the dragon thought-spoke. “Some are allowed to leave, and some are not.”  The dragon belched and flames flickered from his snout. As Vernal contemplated the cause of the dragon’s upset stomach, it continued speaking. “My name is Threfel.  I am three hundred sixty-nine years old.  I met your father here and his sire, and his sire’s sire. Of the three, two walked away and one remained.”

Vernal recalled his father saying that his own da had left home one day and never returned.  Was it because he’d encountered this dragon — Threfel? And what was it that was required to leave alive?  Vernal waited for the answer, but the silence stretched.

Twilight had faded to night.  The air was chill, as was the ground beneath his back.  Vernal wasn’t certain how much of his shivering was shock, how much was fear, and how much was cold.  He knew moving wasn’t an option, not with those razor sharp talons surrounding him.

“If I let you go, will you run?”  Threfel asked.

Vernal remembered the speed and ease with which the dragon captured him in the first place. “I will not run,” he stated.

“That is the truth,” Threfel said.  He lifted his fore arm and set Vernal free.  Vernal stood slowly.  He stomped his feet and rubbed his arms briskly.  His teeth chattered and he quickly bit his tongue to silence them.

“Prideful,” Threfel’s voice came ruefully.  “That is never a good sign.”

“What is wrong with pride?” Vernal asked.

“There is nothing wrong with pride itself,” Threfel answered. “But many people hold it for the wrong reasons.”

That made no sense to Vernal so he didn’t answer.

The dragon seemed to sigh.  “Tell me son of Elun, have you the pride of your father, or your grandfather?”

Vernal answered, “I don’t know, but I fear I will never be the man my father was.”

Threfel stepped backward.  His great, golden body disappeared into the foliage until only his head remained in the clearing with Vernal.  “You are free to go, but first, see that plant there by your left foot?  Grab it as close to the ground as you can and pull it up.”

Vernal did as he was bid without question.  The plant stalk was fibrous, rough and as big around as his little finger.  A good section of soil and a large root cluster lifted with the plant.

“That is woodwort,” Threfel said.  “Pull one of the tubers and tuck it into your satchel, then tamp the plant back into the ground.

Again Vernal did exactly as he was bid, wondering if this was a test.

“It is no test,” Threfel answered his thoughts.  “You are free to go.  The path is wide and the moon is high so you should have no trouble finding your way.  Even so, keep your eyes open for a cromack for you will have need of it tomorrow.” Then, in the blink of an eye, the great dragon was gone.

~*~

The 3WT #49 words will be:

Got it? Good! In that case: Your story is due on: April 1st, 2010
Enjoy!