Writing Prompt: Tired of summoning prepubescent teenagers to fight evil demon lords as chosen ones, the people have decided to summon your granny instead. Armed with crotchet sticks and thirty seven cats—as well as you to remind her of her pills— the subjugation begins.
“You can’t be serious. My Granny, the Chosen One?” Peter was trying awfully hard to make sense of the situation, and failing horribly. He had just fallen from the skies along side his grandmother, Pearl, and the last thing he could remember was enjoying a hot cup of tea and some ginger snaps in his grandmother’s apartment right before the world opened up beneath them. He looked up at the sky from which he’d fallen to see it was returning to a natural, calming blue after having transformed into a swirling pit of grey carpet.
“Oh, my dear boy, I have never been more serious in all my life.” Carter, the town’s Lord Mayor, tugged at the ends of his curling mustache, “Though I must admit, your being here is somewhat of a… surprise.”
“How do you think I feel?” Peter sighed. He watched as his grandmother was slowly making her way around the crowding villagers, offering out hard candies whilst trying to keep each of her thirty seven cats from clawing or biting some poor and unsuspecting soul.
“Here Snowball. Here Mr Whiskers. Here Tabatha.” Pearl tried to entice over three of her more sociable feline friends, but they were far too busy chasing after the town’s chickens who had, regretfully, been allowed to roam the streets freely. “Oh my, Scrabble! You spit that bird out, now!”
Scrabble purred indifferently, letting the chicken go free, only to watch as it ran aimlessly into the paws of Mr Whiskers who proceeded to treat the bird as if it were a ball of string.
“You should know, she’s not all there.” Peter looked lovingly at his grandmother, “My father’s been talking about putting her in a home.”
“The poor devil.” Carter shook his head, re-adjusting his monocle to better see the old lady, “She looks in terribly good health for a woman without a home.”
“No, she has a home, I meant…” Peter considered trying to explain, then decided it didn’t really matter, “What exactly do you want my grandma to do?”
“Why, we want her to slay the Dark Overlord of course.”
“Of course.” Peter muttered. His grandmother had now taken to lecturing a farm boy about cleanliness, using an old, snot-ridden handkerchief and her spit to clean the boy’s dirtied cheek.
“Call the old woman over, would you.” Carter looked expectantly at Peter, “We don’t have all day you know.”
Peter rolled his eyes, “I’m assuming defeating this Dark Overlord is the only means by which we can return home?”
“Well, alright then.” Peter cupped his hands, “Granny, leave the young lad alone and come here would you.”
“What’s that, Cupcake?” Pearl shouted back, “You’ll have to speak up.”
“I said,” and this time Peter chose to speak much, much slower, “Would you please come over here for a moment.”
“Come again, Jelly Bean?”
“Come. Over. Here.”
“Ah, yes dear, just a minute.” Pearl smiled, revealing sagging gums held up by bright, white dentures that were clearly too big for her mouth, “Coming.” she started creeping over to Peter at a pace that would have had a snail shouting for her to hurry the hell up or get out the damn way.
“Oh for Gods sake.” Carter took Peter’s hand, “We’ll go to her, shall we.”
Once Carter had explained in excruciating painful detail the route by which they must travel to the Dark Overlord’s keep, the town was immediately ransacked by a group of savage Ostrich. These Ostriches claimed that they were Vikings, which was only the second most absurd claim they made. They did, after all, have the braided hair and bloodied axes that Viking were renowned for.
“It has begun!” Carter cried, making a run for the town hall, coming to a sudden halt when a rather mean looking Ostrich set fire to the hall’s thatched roof, “You must do something!” he turned to Peter, who then turned to his Gradma, who was, quite astonishingly, sound asleep.
“Granny.” Peter shook his Grandma gently by the shoulders, “Granny, it’s time to wake up.” he rattled a bottle of pills labelled Hydrocodone-Acetaminophen, that he kept in his breast pocket, hoping to lull his Grandma from her sleep.
Meanwhile Snowball, Mr Whiskers, Tabatha, Scrabble and several other cats had lost interest in the chickens and were now chasing round a slightly more aggressive breed of bird. The Viking Ostriches. And much to the town folk’s amazement, the cat’s were winning!
In groups of a half dozen or more the feline predators would chase down and corner a lone Viking bird. They would then diverge into two groups; the group that harassed the legs, scratching and biting in hopes of tripping over the bloody big bird, and the group that climbed upon the Ostriches back, digging their claws in deep and clinging on for dear life as the bloody big bird span helplessly around trying to shake the cats free.
Cottages were burned down, priceless treasures were stolen (including the Mayor’s inexplicably large, gold livery collar), and many a chicken was kidnapped. But regardless, the town’s folk cheered as the Vikings were forced to retreat at the paws of these mighty feline warriors.
“What’s that?” Pearl was roused from her sleep, she smiled sweetly at Peter, “Did you say something, Pumpkin?”
Peter saw the the Ostriches fleeing and shrugged, “Never mind.”
“Never mind?” Carter started jumping up and down, like a toddler throwing a tantrum after being told playtime was over and that they’d have to come on out of the sandpit and take a bath. Or, more accurately, like a Lord Mayor who’d just had his town hall burned to ashes, “Those damn vikings just destroyed half the town! Who knows how many chickens they made off with? And I’m pretty sure that they stole my inexplicably large, gold livery collar!
“To hell with the Dark Overlord, that will have wait.” Carter straightened himself up, dusted himself down, and pointed vaguely after the last of the Viking threat, “I want you to follow those God damn Ostriches!”
Peter watched the last Ostrich turn tail and speed off, vanishing deep within the dense forest that surrounded the town. “Really?”
“Really.” the Lord Mayor folded his arms, letting out a short huffing sound.
Peter turned to his Granny, who was wiping down Snowball with a wet tissue and asking the cat how it had managed to get so much of this jam stuck in its fur. “Then we can go home?”
“Find the Ostriches, return what’s rightfully ours,” Carter gestured to the cowering town’s folk, “and then we’ll talk.”
What choice did Peter have?
He took his Granny underarm and together, at the most excruciatingly painfully slow speed, they started off for the forest, followed closely behind by Pearl’s thirty seven feline friends.
Copyright © K R Perry 2019