Wednesday November 28th, 2012

The exercise:

Write about: the system.

Much better sleep last night. Still feeling tired. Can't figure out how three weeks have gone by already.

Took some things to the dump this afternoon. Actually, most of the load was our old front porch. Pretty satisfying chucking that into the wood pile.

Early indications suggest we're in for another long night.


The posters went up overnight all over the kingdom, seemingly plastered across every surface the king's men could reach. My tiny, insignificant village was no exception: the front door of the barber shop, the windows of the grocer and pharmacy, and three on my bakery alone.

I stood studying those monstrosities as the sun crawled over the horizon. The message was clear, the king's motives less so. A census was being conducted, a grand tallying of all the king's loyal and adoring subjects. In order to construct a more detailed map of the kingdom's population in regards to age, sex, and location.

To better serve us, the posters boldly claimed.


We were being collected and entered into a system of the king's design, transformed from living, breathing humans to soulless, bloodless numbers. For conscription, most likely. Or perhaps some other, even less savory purpose.

Without bothering to look around to see who might be watching I reached out and ripped the posters down, one by one by one. I crumpled them up and tossed them in the dirt before locking my shop and heading home.

There was planning to be done.


Greg said...

Was the porch wood treated then? I could be remembering wrong, but I thought you had a wood-burning stove in the house.
I hope Max settles down for you and it's a peaceful, restful night instead!
Hmm, your baker seems like the paranoid type – I wonder what the King's done in the past to generate this kind of mistrust? And I wonder why the baker tore the information posters down... so many questions you've left me with!

The system
The Green Lightbulb looked down at his clipboard. The top page on it was entitled "The System" and the page below it contained a flow-chart.
"This system is a gambling system that is guaranteed to return 30%" he said. "I've been testing it extensively for the last three months."
"Question!" Sylvestra's hand shot up so fast there was a tiny thunderclap as air rushed into where it had been. "Why haven't you changed your clothes in three months?"
"I sold them to generate capital to prove my system," said Green. He didn't meet her eyes, but she was waving her hand agitatedly already.
"Follow-up question! Why haven't you used the 30% returns from your system to buy new clothes yet?"
"It's a long term proposition," said Green. "In fact, the reason you're here today is to benefit from the opportunity to provide a capital injection into the system...."

Cathryn Leigh said...

@Marc - don't worry he will learn to sleep through the night, you will manage soem sort of routine. In fact don't hesitate to start trying to implement somthing like that now - or do what we did with our first kid - jot down when he sleeps, eat and poops (it's okay if you don't do the last one). It'll change as he grows, but by one (you'll get there don't worry) He'll be sleeping through the night and taking two scheduled naps a day - then it will go down to one, and then you'll wish he still took the one, and then he'll be so self sufficient you'll cry *grins* (okay haven't hit that stage yet... but I know it's coming) :}

Oh and intriguing piece. withthe mention of King I think medievil, but with the mention of numbers, and systems, perhaps it's a little more modern of a time.

@Greg - what a lovely bunch you have, and why is it that it reminds me i work for a venture capitol company?

The system
The system’s been reverting
Taking freedom from the slaves

The government’s diverting
Taking money from the naives

And everyone’s rejoicing
Not seeing all the sin

Until the one comes flying
To show them what has been!

inspired by my NaNovel 2012, which, while past 50K, is still going and I'm peering ahead hoping to find the end out there somewhere.

Marc said...

Greg - the wood was in pretty rough shape in general, with some bits rotting. Not really what I'd want to throw in the fireplace. We've got plenty of firewood anyway.

Ended up being a pretty reasonable night after all last night, I'm relieved to report!

Ah, Green. I'm sure he'll prove that his system works... eventually :)

Cathryn - I'm just looking forward to the part where he sleeps through the night :P

Congrats on getting past 50k :D