From a tower window in Nottingham Castle, two men stared down into the moonlit courtyard.
"I have seen someone crawling around out there." In a well-lit room, hidden behind a curtain and peeking out through a crack to get a view of below, Daniel waved for Asher to join him.
"Inconceivable," Asher retorted.
"Look right at the bush."
Asher, ready to walk away and get back to strolling the uneventful halls waiting for surprises that never came, looked at the bush. Squinting, holding his breath, he watched for human movement.
Daniel had played tricks on Asher before so Asher was skeptical of his jovial guard buddy.
Daniel, seeing Asher's face, said as he turned back to watch for more movement, "This time, not like the last time, I'm not playing any type of joke on you,"
Disgusted with himself for allowing himself to fall prey to Daniels tricks time after time, Asher backed away from the window. "Not this time, pal, because I'm smart."
Asher snapped to attention.
Rushing from behind the window toward the sound, Daniel pushed Asher on the shoulder, turning him around. "Get out of attention and rush down to see what the ruckus is."
Asher, letting the push turn him around without resisting, said, "Not a chance; the last time a knight fell on me."
"This," said Daniel getting serious, "isn't a joke I'm playing on you."
Another loud crash like silverware and metal cups sounded off down the hall but this wasn't going to scare Asher. "Momma warned me that these dubious tricks of yours would continue," Asher said matter-of-factly.
While Asher was turning to go down the other hall and let his friend have a laugh at someone else's expense, there was another cash, the stone." Treasure. From his days working with stone, he knew the sound of breaking alabaster and that meant only one thing - the Nottingham alabaster and this wasn't funny.
He was a few steps behind Daniel as they rushed down the hall to the rooms that housed some of the oldest art gathered from the fourteenth century onward.
Daniel filed in through the door with Asher trailing behind.
They looked around the room and saw the broken pieces of the Nottingham alabaster scattered across the checkered floor. Scanning, neither of them saw anyone in the room.
"Go over there," said Daniel pointing toward the east door while moving to the west one, "and tell me what you find there; hurry."
Both men quickly checked their respected place, found nothing had gone through the locked doors to escape, and then came back to meet in the middle where they first parted.
Asher said there wasn't anything to be seen in his area and Daniel gave Asher the same report as their backs touched.
"Where did they go?" asked Daniel.
It was then that they both looked up and saw the black dots, hundreds of them scattered around that lined the ceiling like ladybug backs.
"There is usually a picnic with dancing and singing," said the strange blob as it wiggled from the virbration it's voice created.
The two guards fired their rifles. Just before the bullets hit their target, the blob split apart like a net.
"That wasn't very nice." The thing had tentacles that came up and out of the floor. Stabbing Asher and Daniel in the leg, each man fell to the ground, howling in pain. "That will take care of you two."
The blob proceded to take the keys off of the belts of the guards. "Thanks for these. There was no other way to get through without them."
The blob then fell straight down to the floor and recalled all of itself into itself, taking the shape of a man.
"Do you know what thoughts keep passing through my head? No, you don't but I'm going to tell you." The man moved closer to the guards.
"Please," pleaded Asher, "don't kill us."
The man pushed over Salt-glazed stoneware. "I've been thinking about how lazy I've been. I mean, I've been playing games, letting the days roll by, letting the outside life pass me by as I stay cooped up in a little room, letting my mind tell me that I can't create today. Do you ever have this problem?"
The creature stood so close to Daniel that he could smell his breath. The smell made his back body tense up in an attempt to get away and this also caused him more pain in his wounded leg.
"I suppose you don't. You're a mere mortal after all. Thinking is not the way of your species. Her, my one true love, ears hurt when I attempted to explain these thoughts to her."
"What do you want?" asked Daniel. "Take it. Just leave us alive."
The man merely looked down on them out of pity. "Do you understand that there can't be any witnesses. What would the world do if they found me out?"
Sniveling, Asher said, "They'll never know because we never saw a thing here. We made this mess."
"I'm flattered that you would do something so kind for me." The man whirled the keyrings around both of his fingers. "I'm too concerned about mistakes." He used one hand to push his hair out of his face. "I can't leave two men alive. What would my wife do to me if she found out?"
"We can help you get what you want." Daniel would say anything to save his skin.
"Anything. Hmm... Yes, why, in fact, there is something that I can't do without you."
"Anything!" shouted Asher.
"I need you to invent a way to conjure a thought before it is thought of. Can you do this?"
Asher and Daniel looked at each other. Neither one could do what he asked, nor did they understand his question.
Seeing this, the man took their heads in his hands and smacked them together. Both of them fell into unconsciousness.
"Time to free my soul, gentleman," said the man. He went to the east door, unlocked it, and walked in.
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A project with me and the bananafish knights is yours to quest in.
|Uncertain Future||Screeching Tires||No Panic||Dirt Bike||Law and Order|
|Pecan||Stone Wall||Inappropriately Dressed||Community Garden||Nail-biting|
|I Sold My Soul to the Devil||Disposable Diaper||Mashed Potatoes|
|Ongoing Stories||Numbered in Order of Story's Progression|
|The Ferris Wheel||Lion by the River||The Feeding||Space Ring||Witchy Things|
|That Fishy Smell||The Light||The Little Ghouls||The Contest||The Blue Envelope|
|The Vomitorium||Strange Happenings||Madness||The Goldminer||The Speaker|
|We-writes (collaborations with community members)|
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