#4: Sir Gustavus

| November 4, 2010 | 0 Comments

And now, for something different. My last entries have been relatively based in reality, but in honor of my awesome dog Gus celebrating his 5th birthday today (monetary donations can be arranged), I thought it’d be fun to turn him into something fun for the Challenge. Thus, Sir Gustavus was born and the fruits of my labor can be seen below. As always, comments are appreciated. Enjoy!

The valley was vast, but it was not as he remembered it.

As he approached the zenith of the hill, he looked down upon the scorched valley he was once boastful to call his Kingdom. He had served proudly and well, offering his undying devotion to the King and Queen, serving out any task they requested. Now, upon his return, he came to find ashes and stone in place of all that he had held so close to his heart whilst seeking out the support of the bordering lands.

On top of the hill he stood for hours, gripping his sword ever the more tightly as the hours passed. Finally, as the moment came where he accepted his Kingdom’s fate, he slowly removed his helmet, letting it drop to his side with a clank. It teetered for a moment before gravity overtook it, sending it bouncing down the other side of the hill to the fires below. His ears flapped in the silent breeze. His nose twitched with every passing gust as the stench of his burned brethren and charred villages seeped into this nostrils.

Sir Gustavus had never been one to allow his emotions to gain control of his better judgement. Even when he was plucked from the litter as a youngling to be trained in the highest of guilds to serve and protect, he did not weep. But now, for the first time, he could feel the sting of tears in his eyes as he gazed upon the wreckage of his home.

The Ferals had long impeded on the Kingdom’s borders, taunting their very civilization for years on end. Yet there had been no war. No battles. Only years of endless taunts, seemingly meaningless jests of annoyance, on both sides of the spectrum. But now, in one fell swoop, the Ferals had banded together and left this great civilization in ruins. The Ferals had left behind their nomadic bands to form a single cohesive unit, collectively striking against their natural predators and effectively ending the ancient standoff.

As Gustavus stood upon that hill, the breaking dawn upon his back, he could see the faintest movement amongst the wreckage. Planks shifting, bricks rolling, fire stifled. Drawing back his tears, Gustavus instinctively gained focus, his keen eyesight sharpening the scene even miles in the distance. There, trotting around his former lands, stomping on the bodies of the deceased and scouring about for days-old fish carcass were Ferals. Dozens of them, scattered about like flies on his excrement.

In that moment, Gustavus stood tall. And for the first time in the many months of his journey, he spoke.

“The Ferals have taken our land, Brothers,” he said. His voice was a low rumble, spoken succinctly and true. “This day, they have stagnated evolution and returned us to our primal states. So shall I.”

Slowly, he began to shed the armor that protected his modest frame, piece by piece. From gauntlets to chainmail, all was removed, added to the pile at the bottom of the hill where his helmet lay. Lastly, he rested his sword on the ground.

Gustavus dropped to all fours, his ears pushed back and his lips curled. He bared the savageness of his teeth so ferociously that even Ferals miles away could stand to look away. His tail went horizontal, his hair raised, and he arched his back downwards, digging his hardened paws into the hard soil. With a howl, Gustavus charged fierce towards the remains of his Kingdom, bringing forth a new hunt.

Category: Fantasy

About the Author ()

Joey is a writer and hoarder of nerd things from New England, currently living existence outside of New York City. He often attends rhythmic ceremonial rituals and gambles away his hard earned money. Currently he’s working on his first novel while creating comics and developing the social writing website Social Pulp, which will be going live by the end of the year. He also serves as the Comics Channel Editor for the major pop culture website CraveOnline. You can find him on Twitter, or e-mail him a lengthy diatribe voicing your utter disgust.

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