The King of Thieves? Part 2

King of Thieves

Catch up with Part 1

Thadeus had left the palace. He was feeling pretty good about it. That poor sap, Menus, would be filling in for him while he’s out on an adventure. Heck, he might never go back. Let the kid enjoy being king for a while. He can’t do that bad a job, after all.

The moon was glittering high in the midnight sky. Thadeus gazed at it a long time. He had forgotten how beautiful the moon was. Why did it look different from the one he saw out his palace windows?

It’s because he was looking at the moon a free man.

He took a deep breath. The air was clear and cold. It chilled his lungs. Thadeus tightened the rough tunic around his chest as he marched down a narrow street.

There were people about. His kind of people. People that had no place to be, so they were just out in the middle of the night. People who wouldn’t be missed at jobs in the morning. People who wouldn’t mind sharing in a bit of mischief. Or a lot.

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The Very Bad Detective, Part 3

The Very Bad Detective

Catch up with Part 1 and Part 2.

Maxwell Brogue stood in the interrogation room. Chained to the table was one Timothy Shanks, a.k.a.: Crooked Timmy. Detective Grimes ceased her pacing when she saw Maxwell. A slight smile grew on her face. The tall Detective Hatts was in a corner, leaning against the wall.

“Oh boy, are you in trouble now, Tim,” Hatts said, straightening up. He walked over to the man in handcuffs. Leaning in, he pointed to Maxwell. “See that man there? He’s the one who busted this case wide open. He found your hammer in the floorboards.”

Crooked Timmy looked up at Maxwell with bloodshot, beady eyes. His expression was hard and violent.

“You wouldn’t be in here right now if it weren’t for him,” Hatts said.

Tim’s face got harder.

“Who are you?” he asked Maxwell.

“This is the city’s finest private detective,” Grimes said. “Max Brogue.”

“Heh, you need a private dick?” Crooked Timmy said. “That’s pretty pathetic, detectives.”

“Keep laughing, Tim,” Hatts said. “A few minutes with Brogue here, you’ll be singing like a bird.”

“Show ‘em what you got, Max,” Grimes said.

Continue reading “The Very Bad Detective, Part 3”

A Small, Sad Dwarf Part 4

A small sad dwarf part 1

Catch up on the story: Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3

The small sad dwarf left the old house and the burnout valley. What waits for him beyond?

The small, sad dwarf climbed up the burnt old ridge. He was right, there was grass on the other side.

In fact, the land sloped down into a bright green valley. He hadn’t seen anything so green, in such a long time. The land rolled away in rolling hills of grass. The sky was clear, with only a few traces of the marching army.

The stars faded as the sky blushed and became blue. A golden ball of bright light climbed up a far away line of mountains. The dwarf could see a long way, for the first time in a while.

Excited, he hurried down the slope into the awaiting grassland. The air smelled fresh and clean. He thought he heard the chirping of… birds? Yes, they were called birds. He looked around but couldn’t see any.

Climbing up from the ground were big, gnarly things. Small pieces of gree clung to their crooked arms. For a second, the dwarf thought they were people, frozen forever. But on closer examination, he realized there was nothing to fear. These things were supposed to be stuck in the ground.

The dwarf walked under them, enjoying the shade they provided from the rising ball of light. When the wind blew between their arms, there was a soft rustle. He liked that sound, though as a dwarf, he hadn’t grown up hearing it.

He walked for a while beneath the gnarled, greeny things. They were thick beside him. The ground, he realized, was flat and even. Very easy to walk on. It was almost as if someone places stones in a long, straight line, to make it easier to walk.

Wasn’t there a name for that? He had to think about it.

He suddenly forgot about all that when he reached a break in the gnarled things. The land spread out under the blue sky. Rising up in front of him was a great many houses.

The dwarf has reached the edge of a town.

Continue reading “A Small, Sad Dwarf Part 4”

The King of Thieves? Part 1

King of Thieves

Thadeus, the King of Thieves, sat on his gold, ornate throne. It was a gaudy thing, his throne. But it was made of just a portion of his accumulated wealth. Gems, filigree, weapons, and even a bit of leather went into the chair. After three decades of thievery, one has a lot to show for his labors.

It was late at night and Thadeus couldn’t sleep. He stared out a window, watching the moon slowly sink behind the city skyline. The entertainers had come and gone. The women of his harem were asleep… somewhere in the palace. For his many trinkets and toys, the King of Thieves was bored.

Sitting back in his throne, he remembered the good ol’ days. The days when he was a young lad with no coin to speak of. The days when a sharp knife and a distracted mark was all he needed. He never killed his victims, just made sure their purses dropped from their belts with relative ease.

And silence. That’s the key. To be a good thief, you had to be silent.

Which was not the case for the man who was climbing into Thadeus’ throne room. He stumbled through the open window, in full view of the throne. He clanged against a pile of jewels, knocking over a bronze tray. Honestly, this boy needed to get his act together.

Continue reading “The King of Thieves? Part 1”

The Very Bad Detective, Part 2

The Very Bad Detective

Catch up with Part 1.

The officers were lined up along the hallway. Their heads were erect. Some of them had smiles on their faces. But most had an appropriately stern, but satisfied, look. The front door of the police station swung open. A bit of the lashing rain fell inside. Marching into the building were Detective Hatts and Grimes.

Between them was a large man, bound in handcuffs. His face was pinched and angry. The expression could have curdled milk. The police officers glared at the brute as he walked passed. Hatts and Grimes pushed the man along, serious as headstones. But they did allow the occasional wink and smile at their colleagues. At one point, Hatts indulged in a high-five.

The police watched as the detectives marched the man to a holding cell. They waited until the cell door clanked shut, before bursting into cheers. One of the grisliest murders the city had ever seen. And their own detectives brought in the culprit.

Maxwell Brogue missed the moment. He was in the bathroom.

Continue reading “The Very Bad Detective, Part 2”