Uncomfortably Tall Adventures
Vanguard one shot teasers
Vanguard Vehemently Values Valorous Velvety Vegetables
1) In a dimly-lit room, three men stand while another lounges ungracefully on an armchair, masticating a sandwich with about as much poise as a hyena when enjoying a fresh carcass. “I, like, don’t trust dudes like that, ya know brah?” eloquently stated the muscular shaggy-haired man to his compatriots. They nodded incredulously at this statement, as if they felt that they had no choice but to agree. “But I, like, feel that I gotta do it or those assholes’ll come and, like, fuck everything up. My hands are tied…and, like, not in the good way. Huuhh, you caught that one, right brah?” But, like seriously, this place has, like, gone to shit real quick and I dunno what to do, ya know? I don’t even know what the fuck a ‘domain of dread’ is anyway…This dude better fix it or I’m about to be, like, really pissed, brah.”
Translation: “I do not trust men of that certain disposition, good sirs. Yet, I feel that I have no clear-cut course of action at this moment, lest our worst fears become reality and our adversaries travel to this land, creating ruination as they please across the countryside. For these fallows do not need any more destruction to rain down upon their once-beautiful landscape; they have seen enough devastation for a lifetime. ‘tis truly a pity…For I know not what a ‘domain of dread’ is, but pray good sirs, if this certain gentleman of whom you speak does not provide the services to which you claim…I will have reached the summit of my mountain of woe and the nadir of my life.”
Vanguard Vomits Volcanic Vultures Vociferously
2) A young rotund duergar stepped through the threshold of a large cold house and onto the stone mosaic of a small waiting room as the distant monastery bells rang out calling for nightly prayers. “I am looking for Mr. Bornfist; where may I find him?” asked the duergar as he removed his damp grey cloak. “Sir, he is currently in the dining room. But, excuse me, it is late and I think he would prefer it if you came back another day. I can resched–” “No, I need to speak with him now, it is urgent and he is expecting me” the cantankerous grouch shrewdly retorted. Without another word, he walked down a dim hallway and found himself inside a large barrel-vaulted stone dining room, looking down a long wooden table sparkling underneath the golden candlelight of a polished chandelier. “I am who you sent for” he said. “My name is Grundeldorr, son of Murkhelmor. I can solve your problem.” “Are you, like, sure, brah? I’m, like totally, neck-deep in shit right nah and I don’t wanna put up with any brahs trying to fuck with me, ya know?” the articulate man stated while roast chicken fell delicately from his mouth. “I’m not in the mood to give you a demonstration, but you may pay me after the job is finished…to your satisfaction.” “Alright brah, then let’s, like, get totally started.” He pushed back his leather chair grabbing a chicken thigh as he pompously trotted out of the room followed closely by the duergar as they proceeded down a dark desiccated staircase.
Vanguard ’Vaginates Vorpal Veterinary Vaccines, Verily
3) Vanguard Forthwind rolls over in his sleep as his eyes dance and his brow moistens with sweat. This night is no different from the rest. He is a slave to his thoughts; enslaved by a memory of a world that once was. A familiar face, Orsik the Seeker, watches his friend turn over and over in agony but in desperate need of rest. The camp is dark, lit only by the moon and the stars; it is a cold summer night but it is nonetheless peaceful. Orsik parts his lips gently and releases a thick stream of smoke that billows out in front of his face. He sits on the hard grass-covered ground questioning two things: What is he thinking? And will he be alright?
In Vanguard’s mind some of the details have grown hazy with age, but the dream itself remains intact after all these years. It was this same time of the year. The crops had been planted and tended but they needed time to grow. Harvest was not for almost another five months. This period of relaxation was also a time of peace in Matthallal—it was festival season. The wedding of Herald Stonegarden and his bride had just concluded. Everyone had their fill of music and dance and it was now time for the humble inhabitants of Matthallal to retire to their beds. Lord Lance Forthwind, his wife, the beautiful Rosepetal and their two children, Sagebrush and Vanguard, arrived home just as a barely audible deeply-pitched horn sounded out in the distance.
“Hide them in the closet, Rosepetal.” Forthwind said to his wife. “I will be back. Vanguard, Sagebrush, I love you both.” He turned and ran quickly out the door grabbing his lance in his left hand as he went. The horn sounded again, this time louder. “Quickly both of you hide in the closet. Do not make any noise. Everything will be alright. I promise.” She firmly closed the closet door after them. They could hear her footsteps on the wooden floor growing faint and then followed by the sound of the metal latch on the front door. Scared, young Vanguard held his sister’s hand trying to quell her fears. The sweat dripped down onto the bridge of his nose. The horn sounded a third time. Screams could be heard off in the distance, first a woman’s, than a man’s then lastly came a cruel chuckling laugh from what seemed like the voice of a young man.
Vanguard and Sagebrush hid in the closet for what seemed like an eternity. The screams became more frequent and in closer proximity. The horn sounded a fourth time. Then, not a moment later, the door opened forcefully with a crash. The impact of boot against metal sent splinters flying in the air. The two children flinched, barely making a sound. The heavy stomp of leather boots pounded against the floorboards. “It’s all clear in here, Commander.” said a deep-voiced man. “He doesn’t care if it’s clear or not you shithead. Burn it to the ground!” cried another man. “Whoa, like, don’t do it yet dudes. First you gotta, like, bring these two totally inside.” calmly ordered a third man. Vanguard knew that he was, no doubt, the owner of the voice who was laughing just a moment ago. “Like, what’s your name, dude?” The beaten, bloody man hunched over in defeat and refused to answer as he was dragged feet first into the quaint country home. “I, like totally, asked you what your fuckin’ name is, brah! Now tell me or I’ll, like, turn her into a minced-meat salad er somethin’!” He was referring to the second prisoner, a woman, Rosepetal, who was thrown next to him. She landed forcefully with a loud thud.
“…My…name is Lance Bass Forthwind.” he replied under his breath. “I am the ruling chieftain of Matthallal. And this is my village that you have desecrated.” The dirty blonde young man immediately answered him “No way, brah. This is, like, your village? But the flag is brown and gray. You, like totally, stole my colors.” “…The flag is actually rubicund red…and cerulean—the triumphal colors of my ancestors.” Forthwind said, breathing heavily, as blood ran down the crown of his head and trickled onto the floor. “Dudes, like, take ‘em away. This guy is such a total D-bag.”
Just at that moment, Vanguard saw a short fat shadowy figure step into view from outside the house. “No, sir, we cannot do that. The slaves will rally around his immense strength. We must kill him and his wife, right here, right now. Then we must search the house for clues and burn it to the ground, just like all the others.” the fat man said with determination visible on his face. “Big L, dude, do you, like, really think so? I think he looks like he’s gotta, like totally, hit the weight room.” “No, Commander Bornfist, I believe it is our best interest if we kill them both right now” “…and if you kill them you’ll have more ‘kill-points’ than everyone else and they’ll all totally think you’re super coool.”
“Everybody already thinks I’m like totally super cool, Laird! Shut up, dude! But, fine, yeah, I’ll kill ‘em.” He slowly raised a toothed longsword above his right shoulder with both hands, gripping the black hilt firmly. Vanguard held his sister’s head against his neck and watched through the crack in the closet doors. A single tear was illuminated by the shaft of light that pierced through, glistening upon his young face. Jack Bornfist swiftly and mercilessly carved through their flesh, slaying his parents almost instantaneously. “Ha, Ha, Laird did you see that? I, like totally, killed them both with one swing! I’m, like, such a badass.” “Yes Jack, you are, indeed, a very bad ass. Ok, both of you,” The fat gnome ordered quickly. “search the entire house then burn it to the ground. Bring anything of importance directly to me. And you, Sir, please come with me, we’ll go examine the statue again…and get you some candy.” Bornfist and Laird then promptly exited the home leaving the two soldiers to their business.
Vanguard then waited for the opportune moment. The soldiers were out of view and he whispered to Sagebrush that now is the time to make their escape. He made one last check then slowly, carefully, opened the closet doors. No one was in sight. As they stood in front of the doorway, they saw the flames swell above the neighboring houses. There were bodies lining the streets. He didn’t have time to think. Vanguard grabbed his sister’s hand and stepped over the now-detached front door and onto the porch. “Haha, gotcha! You didn’t think I was that stupid did ya?” Laird cried as he grabbed Sagebrush with one hand, tossing a torch into the house with the other. “Don’t do anything stupid now boy. You don’t want anything to happen to your little sister, do ya?” Vanguard didn’t think. He didn’t know what to do. The timbers of the house started to catch fire. Smoke began to erupt from the open windows. Sagebrush was crying, tears fell to the ground as he draped her over his fat shoulder. Laird took a step forward towards Vanguard and Vanguard mirrored him. He took a small step backwards onto the porch. He stumbled and fell face first onto the dirty wood, grazing his hand on the planks. Without another thought, he turned his heels and took off running, leaving behind his sister in the hands of that fat ugly gnome.
Vanguard jumped the small wooden picket fence at the end of his family’s property. He turned back to look at his house which was now wearing a fiery crown and a halo of dark black smoke. His sister was screaming his name as she was carried away. He ran as fast as his small weak legs could carry him. He ran, and ran, and ran until finally he came to a small river at the bottom of a large hill. He turned back once more to see if this had really just happened. Yes, he thought. Yes it did. Vanguard could now just barely make out the smoke rising above his small beloved village, but the towering, smoldering beacon, a reminder of this night, would forever be visible in his dreams.
Vocative Verbiage and Villose Vellums are Valeted to Vanguard
4) It is midmorning; a rather cold midmorning day. Only days before our heroes were resting and relaxing at Castle Bailey, but today is a day filled with anxiety, fear, mixed with urgency. Rusty carries a saddle down to the southern stables while Orsik the Seeker slaps his upon Celeborn’s back, fastening it tightly. It is about a sixty mile distance between Fallcreast and Matthallal, Vanguard’s old home. Vanguard himself is already mounted on one of the House Bailey steeds, waiting for his friends to ready themselves before the trek can begin. Vanguard pulls out a small letter from his jacket pocket. It reads:
Vanguard, son of Lance Bass Forthwind,It is of extreme importance that you return to your ancestral home, for your sister, Sagebrush, is in grave danger. Upon receiving this you must leave immediately. Destroy this letter. I will meet you in the place most familiar to you. Domain of Dread?? Godspeed, A friend
“No one could have known the names of his father and his sister unless it was genuine…right? …and who’s ’A friend?’” He thought to himself as he closed the letter and placed it back in his pocket. The party had readied themselves and were off on the King’s Road. Destination: ruins of Matthallal. Vanguard, completely detached from the goings on, continued to pour over this letter for hours as they rode westward. He thought of his past, his present, and what the future has in store for him, continuing to foster the thoughts of remorse, fear and anxiety that raced in his head. Thunk! From out of nowhere Leif Blaze threw an apple at the back of Vanguard’s helmet. “Uh hey Vaseline-guy……Yeah, I’m going to need that later. You should stop thinking about stuff. Thinking’s stupid, eh, most of the time.”
Under his breath Vanguard muttered to himself “Leif Blaze, wise beyond his years.”