Flash Fiction Challenge: Meg and the Necromancer

This week’s challenge was to look through this thread, pick any part that captures your fancy and write a story. I took the beginning of it, and went in a different, goat-free direction (Then I saw all this backstory. But my story was already done, nanny nanny boo boo.). It was one of those stories where the idea was maybe better than the execution, but at least I got it done. Let me know what you think.

Meg took a seat at the bar, deliberately ignoring the curious stares from the other patrons. She knew she must look terrible and smell even worse, with the viscera of three hundred demon yodelers all over her custom-made spidermail armour, but surely a place like this had seen worse. Her two wyverns sprawled on the floor near her stool as she waved the barkeep over.

“Whadya want?”

“You have scalded basilisk venom?” The bartender raised his eyebrows, then shook his head. Should have known better than to expect a dump like this would have such a rare treat. “Fine. White wine spritzer, then.”

“That is not a common drink for a place such as this.” Meg looked up at the voice. Definitely not the bartender’s. It was low-pitched and booming, with an accent she didn’t recognize. The owner of that voice, the biggest, darkest man she’d ever laid eyes on, stood before her, dressed in black from hood to boot. He was taller than Meg by at least two feet, and his brawny frame blocked out the entire room. Her shoulders slumped.

“Do I look like I’m in the mood to be picked-up?” she snarled, indicating the demon-gut-stained armour. “I just want to have a drink in peace.” She turned back to the bar, and took a large gulp of her drink. The wine was surprisingly good, with the just the right amount of seltzer water.

“I do not care to dally with you; it’s just rare to find someone who shares my love of wine spritzers. May I?” He pointed at the seat beside the seat Meg was in. She nodded, and the barkeep plunked down another drink for each of them without being asked.

“I’m Meg. My fire-owl Glenda,” she said, pointing at the creature perched on her shoulder. Then she heard a pair of grunts below her. “My wyverns, Crimson and Clover.”

“I am Nancy. I deal in the magick of death and resurrection.”

“Hey! Isn’t Nancy a girl’s—” Glenda started to say, but Meg cut her off with a glare.

“So, you’re a necromancer,” she said, as a diversion. To his benefit, Nancy did not look at all surprised that the owl could talk; in fact, he looked bemused by what the owl had been saying. He must have gotten that a lot.

“Yes, I suppose you could call me that.” The delicate stemmed wine glass looked like it would be crushed by his meaty hands, but he held it with a surprisingly delicate grace. He even held his pinky finger out as he drank. “I have a task to perform, and I could use some assistance from a warrior such as yourself.”

“What’s the quest?” Meg asked, warily. She really just wanted to have a bath, scrub the yodeler gunk off, and sleep for days. Still, she did love an adventure. And Mistress Murderbeak, her magic knife, loved one even more.

“I seek to raise the goddess of the underworld, Mabel.”

“Ah.” Meg nodded her head. “I’ve heard of her. Most if it no good.”

“She is…mercurial,” Nancy replied. Meg waited a moment for him to continue, but he didn’t say anything else.

“So, why do you want to call on her?” she finally asked. Nancy’s face was too dark to blush, but it would have if it could. He cleared his throat. Loudly.

“I owe a debt to the head of the thieves’ guild. There was this card game…”

“You’ve gotta be kidding me,” she scoffed, after swallowing a mouthful of wine spritzer with some difficulty. “You want to raise Mabel to pay off a gambling debt?” Glenda snorted in derision.

“No! No,” he replied. “It is Lorien who wishes me to raise her. I guess thieving hasn’t been paying as well as he would like. He is looking to…diversify. However, I am hopeful that she will see fit to help me take his place, instead.”

“Well, aren’t you the double-crosser,” she said. He nodded. “It sounds like a horrible plan.” He didn’t respond; he just took another sip of his wine spritzer. Meg sighed. “What exactly do you need to raise Mabel?”

“Just a few ingredients, really. I have most of them here,” he replied, lifting his cloak to reveal a small satchel on his lower back, attached by a belt around his waist. “The only missing element is the handbook of undead seduction, The Necrophilicon. It contains the incantation I must utilize to summon her.”

The Necrophilicon?” Meg asked, trying to sound casual, as if she had never heard of it before.

“Yes. I sent my army to retrieve it from the Hall of Torment, only to find they were all slaughtered and the book stolen from them.” Nancy paused, eyeing Meg’s armour from top to bottom. “An…interesting coincidence that you walk into this establishment covered in demon entrails, is it not?”

“Wait,” she said, forgetting to feign ignorance. “Those demons were yours?”

“Of course. You can’t really believe that an army of demon yodelers, three hundred strong, just appeared out of nowhere.” Nancy stood up and towered over Meg. All of the bar patrons turned to stare at them. Crimson and Clover growled and stood, flexing their iridescent wings, blocking him. Without even touching them, he lifted one hand waved it away, and her pets flew across the room. Glenda screeched and flew over to them.

“You think you’re the only one who wants the book?” Meg cried, springing out of her chair and away from the necromancer. “You think I just killed an army of demons for kicks? And to make all this,” she cried, waving her hands up and down her torso, “even better, your stupid yodeling assholes didn’t even have the damn thing!”

“You don’t have the book?” he asked, looking stricken.

“No,” Meg replied, breathing heavily. “I don’t have the book.”

“Why, then we have a common goal!” Nancy’s dark face broke out into a huge smile, with just a glint of challenge in his eyes. “Shall we set out at first light?”

Like It, Share It...
Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterPin on PinterestShare on Google+Share on LinkedInEmail this to someonePrint this page