Character Issues

“We demand an ending! Our story’s worth defending!”

The Halfling chanted and waved a large cardboard sign as he stomped back and forth. His cloak and bandolier of throwing knives betrayed his profession – more than a burglar, darker than a common thief. The cherubic features of his face twisted in rage.

And he was not alone.

A reporter described the scene into the camera. “Creation in Crisis: Discontented characters on strike! This is Jessie Storm reporting live at the scene in the Unfinished Works folder, where several key members of various plotlines have come forward to express their displeasure.”

A warrior marched in full plate armor, the shaft of his sign tucked away under a tower shield that glimmered in the noonday sun. Behind him, an old man in a diner uniform hobbled with a cane, his voice croaking out the protest cry. “Our story’s worth defending!”

A person much like a wild-haired midget trundled along in the line, holding up a sign and staring in silence. His rattle shook with each step, issuing a faint shuuu-Ka. Next came a woman in gleaming armor, her icy blue eyes like scales weighing the hearts of the crowd. A woman in flowing robes trailed behind her, with eyes drooping down between furtive glances at the onlookers. 

A cloaked assassin stood off to the side. Jessie Storm approached and asked, “Miss, do you have any comment?”

“I saw this coming,” the assassin muttered. “And I already know they’re not going to change anything. The joys of seeing the future before it happens… I can identify and avoid lost causes… even the good ones.”

“That’s… depressing,” Jessie fumbled for words.

The assassin’s frustrations burst. “No, what’s depressing is being left trying to escape after a hit, standing in the middle of a busy street just because the Creator is caught up with some other idea at the moment.”

Jessie backed away and turned to the protestors. She knelt down to ask the midget, “And why are you here?”

He paused his march and locked eyes with the reporter. Then the woman in armor spoke. “He never says anything. Just plays that bone-rattle of his. I think he’s not right in the head.”

“Not surprising,” she added, “since – as I hear tell – the Creator left him aware of a source of great power that could satisfy his hunger, but never gave him the chance to take hold of it.”

“I can see how that might be maddening,” Jessie replied.

“No, maddening is being left unconscious in the middle of a fight, not sure if your friends even win the day.”

The shy woman behind her mumbled something, and the warrior woman spun around. “I know you say we were about to win, but I don’t know for sure. Can’t you see how irritating that is?”

Then the halfling spoke up. “At least He didn’t leave off mid-sentence with what happened to you. ‘The hook whip latched onto Ellers and the bloody man yanked with all his might. Ellers flew several feet and crashed into the ground, then slid and.”

Jessie looked at the protestors, all of whom seemed to ignore the halfling. “I’ll bite. And what?”

“That’s it!” he barked. “Then slid and.” The sign waved back and forth as the halfling vented. “He couldn’t even be bothered to finish the sentence. That’s where He left me… sliding across the floor and.

The woman in robes spoke up. “Oh, it’s so hard for you, isn’t it. ‘The Creator didn’t finish my fight scene. Waah!'” She pointed a finger. “I don’t even know if I’m in my right mind, or if the power I’ve discovered is going to help me or kill me.”

Jessie turned back to the camera. “There you have it, folks. A Creator who has abdicated His responsibilities… unfinished scenes, abandoned plotlines. Will these characters ever get the answers they seek? Stay tuned to Channel–”

A voice boomed from the heavens.

“Cease this nonsense. You think you have it bad now…”

In the distance a new folder opened, shedding inviting light onto the crowd. Another appeared from the ether on the other side of town. Letters flashed across the sky. At first, the onlookers stepped forward, but then they recoiled.

The letters on the first read, Game of Thrones-style storytelling with a subtitle Red Wedding.

On the second, Twilight Fan Fiction.

The crowd dispersed, each returning to their own stories and settings.

Sometimes it was better to be forgotten.


No Time to Write

I enjoyed my last attempt at haiku. Here are a couple more:

I woke with purpose,
But sleep unfulfilled, yet hope
Perhaps tomorrow.

Love is eternal,
Distractions temporary,

But my heart, fickle.