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The Unfortunate Beginnings of Trebil Spoonbutter (Story #101)

Well, well, well, well, well.  Here we are to rock and roll a new story.  A bit behind schedule, what’s new.  It’s a very busy time here at the club with play rehearsals reaching their peak just before we open (in less than 2 weeks!), so finding time to write a story has been . . . challenging.  I am currently writing at work in fits and starts, watching the door hoping no one comes in and sees this.  Nothing like a little paranoia to drive the creative muse.

Speak to me, Muse.  Speak to me.

Okay, the Muse has spoken.  Unfortunately, she spoke in Mandarin Chinese, so I have no idea what she said.  Crazy Muse.  Oh well.  Guess I’ll just have to wing it, then.

THE UNFORTUNATE BEGINNINGS OF TREBIL SPOONBUTTER

Once upon a time, long ago and very far away from wherever you happen to be at this moment, there was a young girl named Special Pooterpie.  Now, little Special lived in a cottage with her parents, Biff and Rosemandible Pooterpie. Special did the cooking and cleaning and laundry and somehow still found time to write a one-act play every single night to perform for her lazy, lazy parents, who she loved dearly despite their reluctance to do anything at all.

One evening, Special sat down to write a play and found that she could not think of a single thing to write about.  This was quite a new situation for her (remember, this was a very long time ago, and writer’s block hadn’t even been invented yet.  Special was actually an early pioneer in the field of writer’s block, but she often gets overlooked because it never really received public attention until Edgar Rice Burroughs’ lesser known brother, Buford, patented it in a failed attempt to explain why he never wrote anything as good as his brother), and she became frightened that perhaps her brain had ceased to function.  Taking quick stock of the fact that she was, in fact, still alive (and she was pretty sure she wouldn’t be if her brain stopped working entirely, she was a smart one, that Special), she decided her brain must still be functioning on some level, and she set out to kick-start the creative muse.

Thinking quickly, she slipped out the back door of the cottage (while her parents were distracted doing nothing at all) and ran twelve and a half miles to the nearest cottage, where her good friend, Trebil Spoonbutter, lived with his parents, Molly and Breckinridge.  Trying to be surreptitious, she threw a stone at his window to get his attention.  Sadly, glass hadn’t actually been invented yet, either, and she wound up hitting poor Trebil right smack on the head and knocking him unconscious.  She thought about running away but then she remembered it was twelve and a half miles back to her own house and she decided to sit down and cry instead.  Fortunately, Trebil woke up pretty quick (it hadn’t been such a big stone, after all, and he’d mostly gone unconscious from shock rather than impact) and saw her crying outside his window.

“Hey!” he said.  “Why are you crying outside my window, friend Special?”

She looked up in surprise.  “Whoa, I thought you were dead,” she said.

“Nah, I just passed out or something,” he said.  “I think someone hit me on the head.  Did you see anyone throw something through my window?”

Special looked at him for a long moment before saying, “nope.  Sorry.”

“No big,” Trebil said.  “So, what are you doing here, anyway?”

“Oh, yeah,” she said, “well, you know how I write a one-act play to perform for my parents every night?”

“Yeah,” he said, “you’ve told me about that, but I’ve never seen one or anything.”  He was trying to make her feel bad for never inviting him to a play, but guilt hadn’t been invented yet, so she didn’t notice.

“Well, today when I sat down to write tonight’s play, I couldn’t think of anything to write,” she said.

“I don’t understand,” he said.

“Nothing came to mind,” she explained.

“What does that mean?” he asked.

“I’ve got some kind of block,” she said, “ and I can’t write.”

“Hm,” he said, “what would you call that?”

“I don’t know,” she replied, “it’s some kind of writer’s . . . wall.  Yes, I’ve got Writer’s Wall.”

“Gee, that sounds tough,” said Trebil.

“You have no idea,” Special said.  “I’ve never had to wait for the creative muse to strike before.  It’s like she’s speaking Mandarin Chinese or something.”

“What’s that?” asked Trebil.

“I don’t know,” said Special.  “I think I just made it up.”  (You’re probably thinking that Mandarin Chinese hadn’t been invented yet, but it totally had – a man named Bill Potrzebie in Port Au Prince, Haiti had invented it two years earlier but he was still trying to raise the money for a plane ticket to China to tell them about it.  His efforts actually became very first Kickstarter account and it made the news and everything.  Trebil and Special had just never heard of it because they were such country bumpkins.)

After a moment’s thought, Trebil said, “well, why don’t you write a play about me?”

“About you?” she said.  “What’s there to write about you?”

“Plenty,” he replied.  “There’s the time I went down to the crick and found a dying yak who I named Spotty Pepper and nursed him back to health and then he saved the whole family when our cottage caught on fire because dad was experimenting with alternating current electricity.  Then dear old Spotty Pepper went back into the house to get ma’s china pig collection and the house collapsed on him, so I built a monument to his honor in the forest, and yaks from far and near showed up at the dedication ceremony.  There wasn’t a dry eye in the forest.”

“No,” said Special.  “I need something good.”

“Well,” said Trebil, “there was the time I went down to the crick and found a dead squirrel.”

“Yeah,” said Special, “like that!  But who would play you?  I’m a girl and you’re a boy.”

“I could play me,” Trebil said softly.

Special looked up, a light burning in her eyes.  She smiled at Trebil as if seeing him for the first time.  She stood up and ran to his window.  She grabbed his hands and squeezed them.  “I’ve only just thought of it,” she said.  “I can pull my hair back and wear a cap.  That way I can play a boy!”

With that she turned and ran twelve and a half miles back to her own house and immediately wrote a play called “The Unfortunate Beginnings of Trebil Spoonbutter,” in which a dying squirrel is transformed into a little boy at the banks of a magical river and has to find a family to take care of him before his heart explodes from all the magic that is in him (obviously creative license had been invented even way back then).

Special performed the whole play herself, and her parents liked it so much that they invited some people over to watch the following night.  The character of Trebil Spoonbutter was so popular that everyone demanded that she write and perform more plays about him.  In the end, she wrote over a hundred plays starring the character, some of the best being “Trebil Spoonbutter and the Tadpole Witch,” “The bewildering Middle of Trebil Spoonbutter,” “The Trying Times and Cruel Intimations of Trebil Spoonbutter,” and, of course, “Trebil Spoonbutter’s Magnificent End.”

The series was wildly popular, and probably would have made the real Trebil Spoonbutter extremely happy and famous and wealthy if only Special had ever thought to invite him to a performance.  Unfortunately, thoughtfulness wasn’t invented until two years after all of this happened.

THE END

Well, that’s what I did at work today.  What did you do?

Love and skiddlypoops,

The SotWC

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Posted by on May 25, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

STORY #6, or Better Late Than Never!(?)

After a very long, very full weekend that started on Thursday (hence the lack of a post on Thursday), the newest “Classic” is up for your perusal.  Check it out here and be on the lookout for another “Classic” story this Thursday, a bonus story for March, since this month has five Thursdays!  We promise that one won’t be late!  🙂

See you soon,

the SotWC

 
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Posted by on March 26, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

Story #5 (has been up for a week…)

I guess I was really out of it by the time I got last week’s Classic, The Little Bunny Rabbit and the Hideous Gargoyle, published, because apparently I never put a post on the main page about it!  So, this week, we’ll have the unprecedented two posts to the main page in one night.  Because I want a post on the main page about Story #5, doggonnit!

Um, okay, mission accomplished.  Now on to our ORIGINAL story for this week!

See you in about 30 seconds,

the SotWC

 
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Posted by on March 15, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

Story #4, what what?

I’m starting to fall asleep at the computer.  I just had a weird 5-second dream about a guy doing push-ups with his face.  Hm.  Time for me to go to bed and time for you to jump on over to our “Classics” section to read this week’s SotWC Classic, “Jelly-Bean Face“!!!

Thanks,

the SotWC

 
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Posted by on March 2, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

A Brief Encounter (Story #98)

Well, good Thursday to you, dear reader!  Here’s hoping the day is treating you well and that sort of thing.  Well, that’s enough of a greeting for me.

So, as I re-read last month’s original story, “The Defenestrated Gorkon,” it re-occurred to me that it has been a long-standing theme here at the club to write stories about people who, for whatever stupid reason popped into my head that week, had no friends.  I said as much in the new intro “Alistair and Jinx and the Horrible Beast” a few weeks back, but it’s about to become more relevant.  Because it has moved me this week to write a story about a dude who has LOTS of friends.  That’s pretty much all I’m starting out with.  Well, that and the fact that I just saw an action-espionage film earlier this week.  Let’s see what happens.

A BRIEF ENCOUNTER

When it was all over, I had to admit that it hadn’t been as messy as I anticipated.  Of course there had been some blood and some screaming, but not nearly as much as I’d expected of either.  I got no plans to justify who I am or what I did.  But I don’t mind telling you what happened.  Let me back it up about seventeen minutes.

My hotel in Madrid was about what I’d come to expect.  Bold design, great views, warm lighting, rustic on the outside, modern-as-hell on the inside.  I stay at the nice hotels, see.  Was there a mini-bar in my room?  Yeah.  A flat screen TV?  You bet.  There was a buffet and a concierge and, I gotta say, it always amused me that they use the French words even in Spain.  That probably makes more sense than us using them in the states, but it still makes me laugh every time.  Call me simple, but that’s the type of thing I think about.

So, I walked into my room and, as expected, there was an envelope waiting for me on the bed.  Plain brown.  Document size.  It had my name handwritten on the front and nothing else.  I didn’t bother to look inside.  It wasn’t money, and it wasn’t going anywhere.  First I wanted a drink.  I cracked open that mini-bar and palmed three cute little bottles of gin.  Good stuff, you know?  Junipero.  Spanish name.  It’s a made in San Fran, but I’ve only had it in Spain.  Isn’t that something?

The cap wasn’t even off the first bottle when Titus walked into my room.  He didn’t kick in the door, he didn’t blow the lock off.  He just walked in, nice as you please.  Probably bribed someone for a key, but I’ll never know.

“Richter,” he said with a little smile.

“Titus Mondrian,” I said without one.  Then I twisted the cap on that first bottle.

He faltered just a bit when I said his name.  “That’s very good,” he returned, looking over his shoulder to make sure the door had shut all the way behind him.  Then he looked back at me with a little detour over to the bed on the way.  “I see you haven’t even opened your envelope.”

“I didn’t have to,” I said.  I took a tug on the cute little bottle of gin and turned to face him.  “That’s not the job, that’s just the instructions.  I already know something about you.”

“And I know something about you,” he said, and pulled out one of those little COP .357’s that has four barrels.  I always thought those things looked silly.  But he had it pointed at my face, and that makes any gun feel like a threat, even a goofy looking piece of hardware like that.  “Where’s your friend?” he asked with a pointed gaze at the gun in his own hand.

“Suit coat,” I said, pointing behind him to where I’d hung my jacket on the back of the door.  I sucked out the rest of bottle number one and reached for bottle number two.  He tensed up when I reached, but I just smiled and dropped the empty bottle on the dresser with a clatter.  When I picked up the next one he relaxed a little and started backing up to the door.  “Don’t move,” he said.  I laughed and unscrewed the cap.

He went searching for a bulge in my jacket and came up with no gun.  Because I didn’t have one.  He found the stiletto under the left armpit just fine, though.

“What’s this?” he said, pulling the blade from the shiv-pocket I had sewn there.

“I got a lot of friends,” I said.  “Not all of them are guns, wise guy.  I don’t need a compact off-duty to punch your ticket.”

"Titus & Richter" Art by Josh Judd

“This is hilarious,” he said, walking back toward me with my own blade held up in front of his stupid, smiling face.  “You think you can drop on me without a rod?  I knew you were coming before you knew you coming, sport.  Steelbook still uses my contacts and what?  He doesn’t think they tell me things?  They’re gonna turn on me just because of some long green?  Do you know who I am?”

“You’re a dead man with no friends,” I said, and took a swig from bottle number two.

Titus had the knife held up high and the gun held down low.  He started to say something smart, but I didn’t care.  I spit that great big swig of gin right in his face, right into his wide, ugly eyes.  At the same time, I swung my left arm down to deflect the inevitable shots from the .357, which were the loudest thing that happened here all night.  My right arm, I dipped and swung in a nice round arc until the tip of that bottle went right into Titus Mondrian’s little pug ear.  The bottle didn’t break like I’d hoped, but the neck went in deep and the contents bubbled on out.  I’ve never tried it, but from the way he lit up the night howling, I’m guessing gin in the ear canal is no picnic.

I turned him around like we were dancing and dropped him to the floor with a kick to the back of each of his knees.  I held his left arm in place and punched his right hand into the floor until he let go of the gun.  That, I threw onto the bed, where it landed right next to my envelope, which I decided it was time to open.  Kneeling on his spine, I said, “don’t move.”  He didn’t.

I grabbed the envelope and held it down close to his face.  “Steelbook sends his regards,” I said.  With that, I opened the envelope and dumped out my “instructions.”  They were new.  They were shiny.  And, man, were they sharp.  Hey, just because an envelope is document size doesn’t mean it’s gotta contain documents.

“I thought you said those were instructions,” he whimpered.

“They are,” I said softly.

That brings us to about ten minutes ago.  I’ve spent the time in between introducing Titus to all my new friends.

Like I said, I got a lot of friends.

THE END

Oo, it got all serious.  Hope you don’t mind; I guess it’s just the mood I was in.  Short, sweet, vague . . .  What’s not to like?  Come back next week and join us as we continue our “Classics” series.  What did we write to follow up the precedent setting “Rotten Apple Core Day“?  I don’t know.  Can’t remember.  Guess we’ll all have to come back and find out next week!

In 7,

the SotWC

 
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Posted by on February 17, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

Story #2!!!

The landmark, historic second ever Story of the Week, “Rotten Apple Core Day,” is now available for your perusal in the CLASSICS section!  Can you think of anything more grand?  Go!  Now!

Love,

Us

 
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Posted by on February 10, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

And Now We Come To It…

That’s right, faithful readers, this week we publish the very first “official” Story of the Week from way back in 1994.  Has it been so long?  Yes, Fin Raziel, it’s been that long.  Now, bop on over to the CLASSICS section and check out STORY #1!

Smooches,

the SotWC

 
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Posted by on February 3, 2012 in Uncategorized