Regular Romp is an interactive fiction activity over on our Twitch stream where I ask a regular a series of questions before turning their answers and a corruption of their username into a short story. Stop by twitch.tv/blainearcade if you’d like to participate.
The scene opens on rolling hills on a windy day. (Stage hands off to the side have large cloth fans and are working quite hard on their simulation) Elizabeth Mary stands at the top with an arm full of dresses in various colors. One by one she throws them to the wind and they are blown off stage. Continue reading
Author’s Note: This short story is a continuation of my Justice Backers novellas, about a team of crowdfunded superheroes. If you wish to read this and fully understand what is going on, I would recommend checking those out first. They can be found in the novellas tab; here’s a link to the beginning of the first one. Okay, commencing with the actual story…
(reading time: 1 hour, 53 minutes)
Conferencepod.com Private Chatroom #8024430
Herocious: Is everybody in here? Can we get a roll call?
TheFastestFood: In the house.
Herocious: So we’re just missing Advocate? Is she here? Continue reading
(reading time: 41 minutes)
The Legend of Broadside Barnaby
Old Thresher the card shark. Remember him? I bested his challenge more than a hundred times over and it were way past due for him to give up the location of Broadside Barnaby. He were the last name left. With him collected the Manifest would be complete, everyone accounted for in myth, and I could have my pa back. My family could have the eventual peace that I worked so hard to disrupt. Continue reading
(reading time: 1 hour, 2 minutes)
That were the story I told my pocket twister. It weren’t the most heartening, but I think confiding in him gave him some strength. He shook off most of that water and started looking more like his old self and less like a cloud constipated with rain.
Now you know whose soul I were collecting all them names for. I knew Pa weren’t at peace. He were still kept from Heaven and Hell in the ropes of Knot-eye, and the only way to get him back or get him to my mother were to obey the will of the Laudgod and eventually be rewarded. I had to be the man he told me to be, to conquer and dominate the West so thoroughly that nothing could stop me. Continue reading
(reading time: 50 minutes)
The Tangent of Sara’s Sewing Spiders
I told you about my mother’s dress shop. I didn’t tell you it were driven out of business by the peculiarest of competitors. My mother, bless her glorious soul in Heaven, were even kind enough to bring the woman who owned the venture a pie as a welcoming gift. Sure it were blackberry pie, not her finest pie by miles, but you can’t expect saintly behavior from a shrewd businesswoman such as her. Continue reading
There’s a version of the wild west where the land in the westward direction just never stopped stretching, where magic seeped out of the canyons and rode the whirlwinds. That’s where Lionel Worthett lives, and it’s where he would’ve died if the almighty Laudgod had just let him.
Instead he was given a task and a document called the Manifest of the West. All he has to do is get the most powerful miscreants, villains, and varmints to sign their names so they can be turned into legends that won’t get any more astonishing, and then he can have his reward, one soul returned from the hereafter, back to the infinite west.
(reading time: 52 minutes) (reading time for entire novella: 3 hours, 25 minutes)
Manifest of the West
There I were, standing before the open mouth of the grand devil’s kingdom… one of its mouths anyway. A hot breath full of ashes descended on me. It were the first one I’d ever set my own eyes on and it weren’t what I expected. The mouth part of the name were supposed to be figurative. It were a disgusting word representing a gate so people would think even less of it than they already did. Except it weren’t so figurative. Continue reading
(reading time: 1 hour, 2 minutes)
A Beast Fights
The tables for the feast had buckets crafted into them because bergfolk celebrations often devolved into dancing right where you ate; this way they could not be kicked aside. The buckets were filled to the brim with all sorts of strange refreshments: spiced green cleansing water, warm red oystie sauce, pure blue toil water, and a foaming drink called scrub-throat that kept its bubbles for days. The bergfolk swished them about in their mouths and noses, sometimes holding one nostril closed so they could blast a fountain of it out the other. Alast watched as a woman gladly opened her mouth to accept a jet of cleansing water fired from a neighboring nostril. It might’ve been rude not to join, but Alast couldn’t bring himself to do it; he let any liquid that came his way splash across his shirt instead. Continue reading
(reading time: 34 minutes)
Cracking the Knuckles
Captain Rob moved through abandoned streets. The folk of Dhonshui had been evacuated from the part of town near the gates, a district called Quig, before the assault began. The closed mint was there and Rob made his move as soon as the last rows of soldiers came through. Luck was on his side, as Inguin had not done anything about the bronze disk Alast had hidden the piece of the Reflecting Path inside. The search Rob had endured for the supposedly swallowed piece was not his favorite thing, but it was far better than anything Yugo had planned. Continue reading
(reading time: 1 hour, 26 minutes)
Second Stone Door was now out of their reach, according to the information they received at the next ekapad station. Yugo’s only stated goal was the tiles, and he did not seem happy about one slipping from his clutches. His forces moved faster than ever, off the established roads and into any territory they saw fit. There were not enough aker shortcuts to keep them ahead of bonepickers indefinitely, so a change of course was required. Continue reading
(reading time: 1 hour, 45 minutes)
“Damr told you to what?” Roary hissed just as he hopped up and closed the door. The current and former cabin boys were in the school’s kitchen; Rob had ordered them to earn their keep by peeling and washing vegetables for Oobla’s cooks before they stepped in to prepare dinner. Alast stood behind the slate counter with an oddly-curved blade in his hand perfect for skinning squish-squashes. The pile of vegetables and their leafy tops was so towering that Alast and Roary had quickly turned to conversation to stave off boredom. Continue reading