Wednesday August 18th, 2010

The exercise:

So Heather mentioned that she was in need of a prompt that would 'force' her to write fiction. Well. I do love me a challenge. This is what I've concocted:

I'm going to give you a scene, along with a small cast of characters, and you get to write what happens there. Warning: I may have had a little too much fun coming up with this.


A pub. There is a bar along one wall, several tables placed haphazardly about the room, and a jukebox in the corner. The jukebox only plays ABBA songs.


Barry: standing on the bar, Barry is a unicorn. With a drinking problem (thus the whole 'standing on the bar' thing).

David: seated at a table by himself, David is a dragon. Who happens to be a hopeless romantic. That only speaks in rhyme.

The bartender: is Superman. Not as in he's a really super guy, but the actual Superman. Why is he working in this pub? You tell me.

The waitress: is named Molly. She's a mime. With a French accent.

One last character is about to enter the pub: yours. He/she can be whoever/whatever you like. They can interact with other characters or merely observe things. I leave that decision in your capably creative hands.

Heather, if you can get non-fiction out of that... I'll have the nice men in white coats come pay you a visit.


The sign over the door loudly proclaims that this establishment is called "We Wuv Whiskey". I pause to listen to it a few more times to make sure I heard it right, then pass through its doors. The opening notes of ABBA's Dancing Queen is the first sound to reach my ears. The second comes from the unicorn staggering across the bar to my left.

"I am not cut off, ya cranky old wanker!" He (at least I think it's a he) shakes his massive head from side to side, causing the empty beer cans that adorn his horn to rattle loud enough to drown out the jukebox for a moment. "Why don't ya go race a speeding bloody train and let a 'corn drink in peace?"

I quickly decide that a seat at the bar is not in my best interest, so I scan the room for an empty table. It appears the only remaining unoccupied table is next to a dragon who seems to be using his talons to write something in his napkin.

Maybe I should keep looking for another place to eat.

"Come lad, come have a seat now!" the dragon calls in my direction with a friendly wave. "Don't be afraid, I'm allergic to cow!"

I'm not sure I believe him but I'm starving and it would be rude to ignore him. So I moo softly and make my way over to him, the bell around my neck marking my progress for all to hear. Easing myself into a chair, I scan the menu that occupies the middle of the table.

"Never been here before?" the dragon asks through a thin puff of smoke. "I highly recommend the boar. Although the omelette also makes me roar. The fries, however, I do not adore."

Oh, how terribly nice! I nod my thanks and he smiles graciously before returning his attention to his napkin. I steal a glance while I wait for the waitress to arrive and, if my eyes have not yet failed me, he seems to be working on a poem entitled Oh Molly, My Sweet Honeybee, How Many Villages Must I Raze To The Ground For Thee?

Poor fellow. I know exactly how he feels.
Well, perhaps not exactly, but close enough.

*   *   *
I'll stop there, otherwise I could easily go on for another hour. And I just don't have that kind of time. Right now :)


Greg said...

You have had fun with this! It seems a little pink-pirate-ship like, so maybe you should punt it up to Protagonize too, and let everyone share in the fun!

Anyway, let's see what I have this morning....

Ah, We Wuv Whiskey, we meet again. Oh the nights I've spent in here, getting so drunk I can see unicorns and dragons... well, Charles and Donald as they're actually called. What's this? Dancing Queen? That sneaky barman must have retrieved the disc from the bin then, I know I threw it out last time I was here.
Beyond the saloon doors, there's Charles prancing up and down the bar, lipstick on his mane despite the only woman in the room being Molly, who's sixty if she's a day. And Donald, sat at a table with... lunch, if I'm not very much mistaken. Just one quick chargrill away from a barbecue.
I pull salt and pepper shakers out of my waistcoat (people wonder that a hedgehog wears a waistcoat sometimes, until I take it off and roll on them), which I always carry because it pays to be prepared, and slide into a seat next to Donald.
"Pray tell me, where does it all end,
My wandering, lovelorn friend?
It's been eight hours since we met,
And only three since the sun set!"
"Yeah, you too, Don," I say, and pop the top off the pepper shaker and dump the contents over his head.
"I say, please!
You'll make me sneeze!"
And he does, turning his head instinctively away from me and shooting a gout of flame over the (surprised) cow turning it into medium well-done steak, ribs, and brisket in one go.
"Dinner's on me!" I yell, looking for a fork.

[Sorry, kind of. You were there and... conveniently tasty :) Oh, and before I forget again, you asked what an MOT is. It's short for MOT Test and is the certificate of roadworthyness a car has to have by law in this country; it has to be renewed every year.]

Heather said...

Marc- Ummm.... yeah. That's not quite what I meant. Leading gently may have been a better interpretation than "force". And I love the little men in white coats. They are my friends who make all the nuttiness stop!

Story is fun, but wouldn't mind if you wanted to write longer. Would have enjoyed meeting Molly. The French accent is so beautiful.

Greg- Although I like the cow's end, I'm not so sure Marc will be so appreciative. God knows what the next prompt will be now! I foresee a continuation story where the goal is to creatively take out any characters you choose to put in.
It wasn't a hard choice. The diner across the street was blaring The Big Twang and I'd hated the group ever since my ex had joined the band. It was raining so hard, I was beginning to 'melt' and needed shelter. (At least that's how I preferred to refer to the chemical reaction between water and sugar.) Plus, they were playing Abba and I'd always had a soft spot for Dancing Queen being the Sugar Plum Princess.

Out of the rain, I stretched my wings spilling colored sugar on the floor and settled at the bar. The monthly molting was becoming a serious pain. Barry, as I later learned his name was, raised a hoof in my direction. Feeling bad for the guy, I smiled back. He'd slopped most of his drink on the floor, his snout not really fitting into the glass well. Drinking problems in these parts were all too common. Accessible glassware really needed to be considered. I shuttered at thinking what kind of germs were carried on the bottom of his hooves and decided I would not order anything to eat.

Looking around the dim room, I saw the waitress putting her hands up in protest as a dragon. was crossing his heart and then, well his bottom. Barry kept snickering. "What's that all about?" I asked daintily.

"Cross my heart and promise not to fart," he said, neighing loudly and slapping his hoof against the bar in a very Mr. Ed sort of way. I opted not to pay attention to any of them and signaled the barkeep.

He had dark hair that curled just above his eye, rippling muscles deep enough to reflect light in little waves of ooh-la-la, and a great cape to compliment the whole package. My wings fluttered when he looked in my direction. In an instant, he was in front of me. "Hi there sweetness," he said softly. "What can I get for you?"

My wings fluttered a little quicker. "How about a nice glass of plum wine to start with." He looked me over in a way that made me feel I had nothing on. I blushed. He winked and returned with a bottle and two glasses.

Marc said...

Greg - I'd had a thought or two about putting this up on Protag. It might appear there at some point :)

And... hmm. It's well written, I suppose. And I imagine some people might find it funny or something.



Heather - force, lead... what's the big difference?

If I could be totally honest for a moment - I couldn't actually remember if you'd said 'force' or not, but then I forgot to double check :P

Anyway, glad it worked! Loved the descriptions of your character, and that's some great interactions with the bartender :)