Thursday, December 11, 2008

A Snippet

This is from a story I recently told to pass the time during a car trip. Story probably isn't the right word, for that implies more coherence than it had, but I can't think of anything better. I was particularly fond of this part, so I'm capturing it here. Apologies if it doesn't make sense, but feel reassured that in context it wouldn't have made much more sense.

The two rabbit guards brought the chipmunk to a hollow log.

"Go on," they said, indicating for him to enter. "We stay here; your path lies ahead."

Nodding, the chipmunk straightened his knapsack and entered the log. The entry was overhung with leaves, and it quickly became dark inside. He inched his way forward. After a few steps, he collided with a mass of feathers.

"Excuse me!" harumphed the feathers.

"Oh, I'm sorry, I didn't see you," the chipmunk apologized.


"I, um, am looking to pass through the log," the chipmunk offered.

"Are you? Well."

"I've been invited to see the Badger King."

"The Badger King? Yes, come along then."

The chipmunk followed the sound of feathers scraping against the log. They soon came upon some luminescent drawings upon the curved log walls. Glowing in strange yellow paint, they depicted a pheasant holding a goblet, turtles running on small strips of bark, squirrels balancing on tightropes and, most strangely, a crowd of animals, including fawns and tigers and beetles, gaping at an exalted badger.

"These are wonderful drawings," observed the chipmunk. In the light from the walls, he could see the form of his guide, a large pheasant.

"Why, ho, thank you," guffawed the pheasant in mock modesty. "I painted them myself. I am the keeper of this log shrine."


"Yes, of course."

"Where do you get the paint?"

"The fireflies. There is a basin at the top of the log, a stone bowl. The fireflies, in their frenzied devotion to my shrine, land there and, using a few pebbles strewn about, take their lives. Right there, in the basin. I use their sacrifice as paint."

"Oh," commented the chipmunk, at a loss. "That sounds, er, dedicated."

Princess Nijma

Princess Nijma