Monday October 6th, 2014

The exercise:

Write about: the penguin.

Feeling mostly better today, aside from some lingering nasal grossness. Max is also on the mend, though his lingering nasal issues would be better described as nasty. Kat has also hopefully turned the corner on her cold, so fingers crossed that we'll all be back to full health in a day or two.

I got started on our final box harvest of the year late this morning and late this afternoon, collecting butternut and spaghetti squash, as well as tomatoes and zucchini. Still a fair amount of work to do tomorrow while Kat is away teaching, but it should be manageable.

The weather here, by the way, has been quite lovely. I was just realizing I hadn't mentioned it recently, so I wanted to point out how warm and sunny the days have been lately.


Night fell on the rainy streets of the city with deceptive speed, sending the remaining pedestrians scurrying for the relative safety of their homes. Water collected in puddles both shallow and deep, casting murky reflections of the few working street lights.

High above, standing at the window of an abandoned warehouse, he watched. Tapping the silver tip of his black umbrella against the rotting floorboards, he waited. Grinding his teeth the way his dentist insisted that he stop doing, he sighed.


The room he occupied also hosted a large, sturdy desk and a dented filing cabinet that no longer closed properly. Otherwise it was empty - no chairs, no shelves, and certainly no art on the walls. And, more to his current displeasure, no henchmen.

They should have returned an hour ago, at least. Bags weighed down with stolen goods of varying size and value. Perhaps even with a kidnap victim or two in tow. But no, nothing. Which, of course, could only mean one simple, aggravating thing.

That meddlesome Batman had interfered in his business yet again.


Greg said...

Mmm, butternut squash! You've reminded me that I need to get some now, roast it, and turn it into a risotto. Perfect Winter food :)
Glad to hear that you're all starting to feel better as well. In a way I think you've been lucky; having all got the cold together there's no-one to re-infect you again after you get well!
Heh, I do like your version of the Penguin, definitely from the 60s-era Batman I think! The little details are well-noted and what bring the whole thing to life for me, from the silver tipped umbrella to the dented filing cabinet that won't close any more, from the shadows of Gotham to the meddling of Batman.

The Penguin
"A clockwork penguin," said Maurice, picking it up. It ticked slightly in his hands. "What a marvel! Wherever did you get it?" He started turning it over, looking for marks that might indicate the maker or provenance, while around him the audience cooed appreciatively for the tv cameras.
"I found it," said Hattie. She was feeling nervous. Her boss had insisted that she come along to the filming of Antiques Sideshow, and had provided her with the penguin to show to people so that she could feel like she was participating, but she couldn't help but wonder what his ulterior motive was. Or why he'd insisted that she wear gloves whenever she had to handle the penguin. "It waddled up to the front door one day, and stood outside ticking to itself."
"How marvellous," said Maurice, still peering into intimate parts of the penguin. He produced a jeweller's loupe and peered deeper still. "Did you let it inside?"
"Only after we were sure it wasn't going to explode," said Hattie. "It spent a week in a packing case filled with foam peanuts."
"I hardly think that would damp an explosion," said Maurice poking a finger into what looked like a bodily orifice for the bird. "Damn! It bit me!"
"Bit you?" asked Hattie, given that the cameras had shown quite clearly where Maurice had inserted his fingers. She didn't much feel like telling him anymore that it had been buried in nearly 300 tonnes of packing peanuts and they'd all felt quite safe from it exploding.
"Well, something did," said Maurice. His eyes rolled back up into his head all of a sudden, and then he sprawled backwards, his chair toppling to the floor and the penguin flying free from his grasp.
"My penguin!" screamed Hattie, and ran in the other direction, just in case.

Anonymous said...

Fetch your tux
And I’ll grab my yellow flats
And we’ll waddle together
With no cares in the world.
For you are mine
And I am yours.
This cold tundra of a world
Will not slow us down.

morganna said...

Pretty little penguin
Every morning
Neatly dressed
Going fishing
Under the
Nipping past the seals.

I wanted a purple penguin, but I couldn't quite work it in.

Marc said...

Greg - yeah, at least we got it all out of the way at once. And thank you for the kind words on mine.

Poor Hattie, I quite feel for her. Love the story here, by the way. I'm not sure I'd let a ticking penguin into my home, no matter how well packed away it might be!

Ivybennet - really like this one, it put a big smile on my face :)

Morganna - ah, perhaps next time. Though this one is lovely in its own right! Very serene, I think.