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Here’s a WIP from NaNoWriMo 2017, currently titled King Under the Mountain. Set in Casper, Wyoming, in a world where goblins trade in magical goods with humans, traveling from their world to ours through stone circle gates. But if humans aren’t wary in their dealings with goblins, they can find themselves stolen away!
Stephanie and Alix, cousins, are biking home from a party, a bit drunk, and Stephanie vanishes in a ring of toadstools. Alix calls for the King Under the Mountain, and is allowed to try to bring Stephanie back, going through a gate with two guard goblins ( a rude man, Zimmah, and a more polite woman), and the woman offers Alix some advice.
“You might as give up now, before we have to bury your rotting corpse,” Zimmah, who had drifted a little closer while the woman explained, said.
“Zimmah!” the woman snapped, and said something in the same scolding tone, though not in a language Alix recognized.
He snorted in response, and turned his back on them both.
“Human!” the woman said, slightly more gently.
Alix nodded to show she was listening.
“Pay attention, and survive. Or better yet, go home–all of the stones here will carry you there. I hope not to see you again, human.” She turned and walked past Zimmah, kicking him in the ankle as she passed.
He swore at her, but followed, and they rounded the trunk one of the enormous trees towering over the beach, and didn’t emerge from the other side.
* * *
I took inspiration from “The Ballad of Tam Lin,” and Christina Rosetti’s “Goblin Market.” The idea of people being stolen away, and a loved one journeying to get them back (though Tam Lin was stolen by the Queen of the fairies), and the bustling goblin markets with their dangerous fruit from Rosetti’s poem sparked this adventure. Alix and Stephanie are college freshman, 18 and 19 respectively, and cousins sharing a dorm room. They have just left an off-campus party where they did some drinking, and are biking back to the dorms in the evening.
I like the tone of this passage. You brought the two goblins to life.
Glad you think so. 🙂
Great snippet. I think I like the grouchy goblin 🙂 Tweeted.
He’s kind of a jerk. But he’s a hot jerk, if that helps. 😀
Great interplay between the goblins. Though the whole mission is sounding increasingly hopeless.
It’s one of those ‘It will be very difficult’ kind of quests. Many fail–which is why Alix has been warned off several times!
Just keeps getting more and more fascinating. I can’t say those two were exactly helpful to her! Enjoyed the excerpt…!
Zimmah isn’t trying to help, but the other goblin gave some good advice I skipped over, and her general warning is fairly useful.
Yup, I would try to avoid them in the future. But I don’t think she’s going to be that lucky. 😉
She’s going to run into some goblins again, yes. And make some new ‘friends,’ too. 😀
Love the bickering between these two 🙂
They’re not exactly friends. Just coworkers. 😉
I like the kick to the shins- shows these goblins “humanity”. But I hope she finds more helpful helpers along the way.
Her help is going to be mixed. Some things you have to do on your own!
These goblins definitely give a small example of their kind. The old female is… I suspect given more time, Zimmah would be a fun character to create a story around as well.
I don’t like Zimmah well enough to write about him, but he does have a backstory, of course. And it’s a bit of a doozy, hence why he’s so cranky!
He’s your character, and who knows perhaps he’ll grow on you. (though I have trouble loving my villains quite enough too)
Haha! I like that she kicked him. Had to keep him in line–or at least try.
The story sounds intriguing. She pretty much has to go after her cousin. She’ll be in deep kimchi with her family otherwise. 🙂
Zimmah does NOT meet her professional standards.
Right? Imagine trying to explain! ‘Well, she got taken y goblins, so I came home. Sorry about that.’
What a delightful fellow. Will she take the woman’s advise? Oh, I doubt it.
Well, at least some of it. The ‘go home’ part, no. How can she leave her cousin behind?
LOL that she kicked him. Good for her.
I forgot to sign up in time, but I did post. http://dianeburton.blogspot.com/
Imagine being stuck with that one coworker you really hated… for centuries.
I love their interactions and personalities!
She’s really not so fond of him, and I can’t blame her. 😉
I like the interaction between the two goblins too, very enjoyable snippet!
Glad you enjoyed! 🙂
A grouchy goblin. Very enjoyable.
He is rather unpleasant. 🙂
Great interaction with the goblins. I’m intrigued to know more.
Glad to hear it!
Well, they’re obviously not going to help her find Stephanie. I hope she’s not too discouraged.
Help is in short supply in the goblin kingdom.