Guest Post: Reclaiming Right with a Handsome Face on the Side (Beth Madden)

Today we have guest poster Beth Madden from The Doll Thermometer here with us. We both had a lot of fun with this post — she told me to give her a bunch of random nouns, adjectives, verbs, and adverbs, and then she crafted a scene out of the words I supplied. See the result below:

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Reclaiming Right with a Handsome Face on the Side

And now, a randomly generated scene for Michelle …

Nouns: poodle, pizza, starship, hot chocolate, bridge, scimitar, magic

Adjectives: fluffy, crazy, awesome, gargantuan, translucent

Verbs: cavort, sprawl, collapse

Adverb: languidly

*

‘What I wouldn’t give for a bite of pizza.’ Rin’s wistful sigh joined the hum of the swirling wind at the cliff’s edge. Her sinewy body sprawled beneath a gargantuan shrub, she eyed the bridge spanning the strait below.

‘And maybe a hot chocolate chaser,’ Miki joined in Rin’s longing for simple fare. Or any fare, for that matter. The chill in the mist biting on her sun-accustomed skin, Miki was squashed in the shell of a collapsed tree, sheathed scimitar hugged close to her chest.

‘Soon, we can afford both,’ Rin promised. Despite the frequent traffic below – the steel suspension bridge was the only crossing between the mainland and the agricultural island adjacent, and was often thick with fluffy sheep, ten abreast – Rin had been assured her quarry would catch anyone’s eye. And Rin wasn’t just anyone. She was hired power. And she was hungry. Nothing could hone her eyes to a finer edge.

Miki was grateful Rin had asked her along, but had questioned the decision, knowing her abilities wouldn’t be required on this mission.

‘I won’t steal from you,’ she’d said, keen for the offered coins but reluctant to sink lower than she’d already managed. It was a stringent society they’d been forced to join, here.

‘It’s not stealing. You never know when you’ll need a sword master in your pocket.

‘There,’ Rin now breathed. Miki edged from her shelter. Keeping low, she wriggled forward on her belly to have a look, following the point of Rin’s fingers.

‘It’s only an old woman!’ she exclaimed, tasting dirt as Rin shoved her face into the ground.

‘Keep it down.’

Spitting, Miki peered over the cliff again. The woman approached the mainland, and Miki saw her furs were thick, adorned with jewels that glittered like far-distant stars in the translucent sunlight. But her finery was not as conspicuous as the pale purple poodle, fluffier than any sheep Miki had yet seen, trotting at her heels.

‘Lilac fluffball in tow,’ Rin muttered, satisfied she’d found her target.

‘Who is it?’ Miki asked as the poodle cavorted about the woman’s feet. Miki had no use for such creatures, but it certainly was endearing. Nothing like the stately, snobby lapdogs that stalked about town gardens with their equally snobby owners.

‘I don’t know. The deputy mayor’s mother? An old gang lord’s mistress?’

‘You didn’t ask?’

Miki suddenly tasted worse than dirt. She scraped her tongue across the roof of her mouth in distaste. However she abhorred the upper-class that demeaned them, picking off a potential innocent at a distance was hardly fair.

‘This goes against every code I follow,’ Miki grumbled. ‘The warrior’s code, my moral code… what have we become? We have to get off this moon.’

Rin said nothing. Hot magic gathered in her fist; Miki felt as though she lay alongside a pleasant campfire. Though she appreciated the warmth, she fought the urge to pinch her friend and break her focus.

‘Rin…’ she murmured disparagingly. But her stomach ached too badly to protest more.

What was that about not wanting to sink any lower? Miki thought dismally as she began to sweat, the air temperature jumping alarmingly. Rin cocked her weapon, fingers deadly double-barrels and blazing.

‘Almost there,’ she breathed, the epitome of concentration. Miki closed her eyes against guilt, hiding in the hum of the wind and the build up of power in Rin’s well-aimed fingertips.

Hmmmm. Hmmmm.

The hum was suddenly a lot louder. And where had the pale sunlight gone? Miki blinked open her eyes. The entire cliff was cast in shadow, and the air thrummed. Below, the poodle gave a yip and tore from its lead, racing back towards the island. Rin’s target turned about, puffing as she tried to catch her frightened pet.

‘Damn that crazy dog,’ Rin swore, and fired twice in quick succession. The blasts rattled Miki’s eardrums, but a far more pressing concern had just landed at their backs.

‘Rin,’ she whispered, making her furious friend look. Rin stopped cursing straightaway.

A massive starship had taken over the cliff’s edge.

They’d not seen any starships since – well, since the one that had marooned them.

Before the pair could truly accept the awesome sight, a door was sailing open, and a gangway streamed to the stones like a silver glacier. Moments later, a shadowed figure appeared at its head. It strode languidly towards them, its smile revealed to be charming as his features appeared with light and proximity.

Fear dissipating, Miki grinned, sheathing her rapidly-drawn scimitar.

Even had she dinner waiting, she would keep it hanging on for such a handsome face.

‘Do you girls need a lift?’

‘That’d be great,’ Rin recovered before Miki, his words more glorious than any they could have hoped to hear.

‘Where are you headed?’

‘Anywhere, so long as it’s away from here.

‘Still want to lecture me on morality?’ Rin whispered as they brushed over the young man’s questions. No, they didn’t need to fetch anything. They could leave immediately. No one would miss them, and they had nothing to miss.

‘I’ll get right on that,’ Miki murmured back. If their lost sense of right and wrong had given them the chance to escape this thankless moon and reclaim their souls – not to mention this gorgeous being to look at and an upcoming meal in the galley, if they were lucky – Miki considered that a win.

*

Unrelated media of the day:

In honour of my one year blogging anniversary, I present to you the ultimate milestone-achievement song:

Any else tear up when they hear this song? God. Every time.

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Categories: Guest Post | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

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7 thoughts on “Guest Post: Reclaiming Right with a Handsome Face on the Side (Beth Madden)

  1. Congrats on reaching the one year anniversary for blogging. It is definitely something to be proud of and shows your dedication to your craft. Great guest post 🙂 I loved the story and how she came up with ways to link all the words together. If she can do that, she has to be a even more brilliant writer without any constrictions.

    • Unless by setting constrictions for herself, she actually entered an untapped realm of genius and thus became SUPER WRITER!!!

      And thanks 🙂 I knew the anniversary was sometime around now, but it’s still hard to believe it’s been a whole year!

      • It’s a great milestone and something many other bloggers aspire to do. I hope to achieve something as great as that in my future blogging 🙂

  2. Love exercises like this….

  3. Pingback: Guest Blogging Over at Michelle’s | doll thermometer

  4. Pingback: Still No Scene and Suddenly Bagpipes | doll thermometer

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