Year Past

Bradley Pelish at Unsplash

Danno stood on the boundary and tried to make out what lay ahead. All he could make out was more haze and confusion. He had been in a similar place before; a year ago in fact. He looked behind him, and then forward again. Surely, 2022 couldn’t be any worse than 2021. Then again, he thought that the year before as well. He looked back again and took it all in. “Into the mist,” he said aloud and stepped into ’22.


A Change Of Tack

Map, Robbery, Middle Ages, Table, Chair, Medieval

“Why do we always go to an inn after a mission?” Baylor asked.

“It’s tradition,” Amwyn the Sorceress replied.

“Yes, but, we go on an adventure, we then go to a merchant and sell our take. Next we go to an inn sleep a couple of hours, then wile way in the bar until we overhear some new feat to be attempted. In the meantime we drink away a sizeable portion of our takings,” Baylor observed.

“What else could we do?” Reynor the Bowman asked.

“What if we bought a little storefront and set up an office? Then we could advertise our services,” Baylor suggested.

With that Adventures Are Us was born. The comrades soon found that business was not going to be easy however. In the first week they only had one enquiry about a map, which proved to be an old copy of a milkman’s route. For their troubles they managed to obtain little more than 73 empty bottles and a tub of cottage cheese.

The second week saw them placing a notice at Town Hall which read “No mission too small.” This led to Baylor and Reynor serving as private security at the Cheese-mongers’ Convention, and Tenian the Bard playing three sets at a third rate music festival as the warm-up act for a trio of trolls called The Tone-Deaths.

Week three found Amwyn doing simple illusions and making balloon animals at the Lord Mayor’s daughter’s seventh birthday party.

The adventurers all returned to the office on the following Monday with only one thing in mind, though no one dared speak it.

Finally, Reynor said, “Let’s go to the inn,” and they all agreed.


A Bit Of A Laugh

House, Country House, Exterior, Facade

It all sounded like a bit of a laugh. Word around the pub was that the weird guy over at Number 23 was out of town, and that there was some quality electronics to be had by anyone enterprising enough to help themselves to them.

Pete was a little reluctant at first, but Davie and Trev said it would be a doddle, and that no one would ever know it was them. Pete at last gave in and the trio planned to give the place the once over that evening.

Wearing dark hoodies, and Covid masks they made their way to the back door and had a check. Sure enough there was an easily located key under a dog dish on the porch. So far so good.

Things soon took a turn for the worse. No sooner than Trev turned the key and stepped through the kitchen door that got a face full of some sort of cobweb. Hundreds of little spiders darted all over him and he screamed as he received scores of bites before he began to swell all over, and fell lifeless to the floor.

The remaining two burglars looked at each other and began to retreat towards the treeline of the back garden when a low growl of at least three large canines could be heard. Pete caught glimpse of bared fangs among the trees and bolted back into the kitchen, followed by Davie who slammed the door shut as four huge Rottweilers pounced against it.

“What do we do now?” Pete gasped.

“Hell if I know. No wait. I will get some food from the fridge and we will throw it out the window in the back and then run out the front door.”

Davie opened the fridge and took out what looked like chicken and opened the window just enough to toss it out. One of the hounds approached it and then gobbled it up, but the other three were nowhere to be seen. He then knocked loudly on the glass until the others came into view before throwing some lunch meat and a hastily opened can of corned beef out the window. He then ran to the front door and made an exit, only to be mauled by two other Rottweilers.

Pete barely had time to get the door shut. He sat on the couch in the living room and tried to work out what to do next. He knew he couldn’t outrun the dogs. He decided to check the basement to see if there was anything he might use to escape with, or at least a weapon.

He made his way through the house and marvelled at the high tech kit that seemed to be everywhere. He attempted to boot up one computer display just to be jolted with a burst of electricity that knocked him backwards. It was then that he noticed their were weird posters of demonic creatures on several walls.

Escape again became the only thing on Pete’s mind. When he got the the door to the basement there was a bronze plaque that said “Abandon all hope those who tread here.” That was enough. Pete admitted defeat and rang the police to turn himself in.

When the officers arrived, the dogs or spiders were nowhere to be seen nor were the bodies of his mates. Pete frantically tried to tell the events of the evening to the officers, but the police were dismissive of his claims asking what he had been taking.

“There must be a bad batch out there,” one of the cops said.

“But I don’t do drugs,” Pete objected.

“That’s what they all say,” the other cop replied.

Pete of course was telling the truth, and his friends were never seen again. He did, however, learn the valuable lesson that you should never try to rob a Dungeon Master.


Christmas Wish

Gifts, Christmas, Morning, Birthday

For some a morning festive

All exciting and bright

For others a day for a lie-in

After a celebratory night

Whether a day of presents and feasting

Or of hymns and religious rites

I wish you all a happy Christmas

Filled with your heart’s delights