Wednesday December 18th, 2013

The exercise:

Now that we're down to just a week left before Christmas, I figured it's time for my nearly yearly countdown to the big day. Back in 2009 I used the title of various Christmas songs and I thought I'd tinker with that just a little bit.

This time around, we're going to be using the first line of my chosen Christmas songs as our prompts. You can connect each day's writing to the next if you wish, but I think I'll have to pass on that again this year. Disappointing, as I've always enjoyed those week long stories. Perhaps I'll make up for it by doing a theme week early in the new year.

Either way, the first opening line for us to use as our own comes from Silver Bells:

Silver bells, silver bells, it's Christmas time in the city


Silver bells, silver bells, it's Christmas time in the city. The copper chimes have been covered up and put away, the golden gongs retired for this year. Silver notes alone fill these streets, echoing from house to house.

All day and all night, in the warmth of the sun and mirroring the moon, the bells ring on. Relentless and unstoppable, the church towers vibrating with their music. Spreading Christmas spirit to every corner of this town, from richest to poorest and back again.

Or so they claim.

Me? I say we'll all be completely mad by the time they finally silence the silver bells once more.


Greg said...

Hopefully I'll be able to treat this as a theme week (we haven't had one of them in a while actually!) :) And though I'd normally invent some new characters for a theme week, I'm quite enjoying seeing what Uruk is up to at the moment, so I think he can take centre stage for me.
Your first paragraph sounds so cheerful and promising! And then gradually that's eroded away, just like your narrator's patience. Lovely mirroring there :)

Silver bells
Silver bells, silver bells, it's Christmas time in the city. The words were inscribed on a thin copper plate, hung on the dungeon wall with a rusty nail. Uruk read it again, wondering who Christmas was and where the city was supposed to be -- round here it was six-house villages, narrow strips of farmland and acres and acres of rolling forest -- and then unhooked it and dropped it into his backpack. Light, easy-to-carry, and bound to fetch a decent sum from some idiot who thought it would look pretty in their dining room.
As he pulled the draw-cords on the grimy leather backpack tight, he heard an odd jingle. He opened the backpack up again, even his nose wrinkling at the smell of treasures that needed cleaning of their previous owners vital fluids, and poked around. He didn't remember picking up any bells.
There were definitely no bells in the backpack, yet now and then, as he rearranged things, something jingled. Finally he resorted to taking everything out, one at a time, and shaking it. It proved to be the copper plate that was jingling.
He packed it away again, mentally marking the price up by 30%. That made for a nice novelty item. Then he sniffed the air, checking the for chill breeze that would lead him to the surface, or at the courtyard of the Lich King's castle, and set off.
Behind him, with the faintest possible jingle of silver bells, it started snowing in the dungeon.

Marc said...

Greg - so pleased that we get an entire week of Uruk :)

Great introduction to this adventure, and that final line is really excellent.