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Sunday, June 8, 2008

Weekend Fiction Break is Back!

For those who are new to Bold. Blue. Adventure., I had a feature a few months back, called Weekend Fiction Break, where I posted short fiction. I'm bringing it back from hiatus this week. Calliope's Coffee House has provided me with a writing prompt in the form of an abstract picture (Click here for the link), and I'm sharing my story for your enjoyment. Cheers.

Smiley the Bandit

In a place a bit like our own but much more real, there was a boy named Smiley. Smiley was a very brave boy. Every day, Smiley’s mom sent him to school with a sandwich packed in his lunchbox. Each day, the bully in the hall would demand that Smiley give him the sandwich or get beaten up. Smiley, being wise, as well as brave, would give the sandwich up, because he knew that the bully had little enough to eat at home, and the lack of a sandwich was not a thing to fight over. He would eat his fruit pack instead and come home with a rumbling stomach. Each day, he kissed his mother on the cheek and told her what a tasty sandwich she’d made him.

This routine continued for many years, until one day, Smiley was kidnapped by a band of roving gypsies on his way to school. This sort of thing was rather common where Smiley lived, and Smiley kept his shoulders straight, held his head up and high, and pretended he hadn’t a care in the world. He knew that sometimes the gypsies sold the kidnapped children back to their families for a premium, so for the time being, he was content to wait in the back of the gypsy caravan.

One day the caravan was attacked by fire-breathing dragons, and in the confusion of the battle, Smiley got a hold of a knife that someone had dropped, and managed to free himself from the caravan. He was ready to run for home when he saw a tiny girl about to be swallowed by the dragon. With only his knife to protect him, he ran after the girl and rescued her from the dragon by stabbing it in the eye.

Many of the gypsies witnessed his act of courage, and afterwards he was treated differently. He was allowed to roam freely throughout the caravan, and everyone, it seemed, wanted to talk to him. Although he missed his mother, he enjoyed learning the art of knife fighting and archery with the other gypsies. As time went by, he began to notice that despite their penchant for kidnapping, when the gypsies stole, it was to keep themselves from starving, and goods were shared equally between the gypsies. Because of the Anti-Gypsy Law of ’83, they were unable to work for a living, nor buy and sell through conventional means with the outside world.

Before Smiley had realized it, a number of years had passed and the old gypsy king had died. Smiley had by now become another member of the gypsies, and he was unanimously elected the gypsy king. Smiley, who was as brave as ten men, was considered the best gypsy king since Guriek the third.

Under his rule, the gypsies stopped kidnapping children and instead focused on exacting a portion of the goods of those who passed through their territory. Before long, wise travelers took an extra portion of goods to give to the gypsies, but more than one ruler unwisely tried to tangle with King Smiley (or Smiley the Bandit as he was called outside of the gypsies).

Smiley grew weary one day of his kingly duties and desired to see his mother one last time, if indeed she still lived. He set out in disguise to see her, but before he could reach her, was spotted by someone familiar with him in his childhood.

Smiley was not well-liked in the outside world. That is to say, he was utterly despised. The fact that he had grown up in the outside world was part of it perhaps. He was quickly tried and found guilty of a great many crimes. His mother, who was still alive, was not allowed to visit him in prison, but on the day they hung Smiley the Bandit, she watched from the crowd, wailing and waving her handkerchief .


Jacquie Reaville (The Book Imp) said...

Hi and thanks for leaving your link on my writing challenge. I just read your story and I'm impressed! I can't help feeling sorry for Smiley though.

I hope you'll continue to take part and if you don't mind I'm going to add your site to my blog roll.

Jacquie from Calliope's Coffee House

Kim L said...

Jacquie-no of course, I don't mind if you add me to your blogroll. I really like your writing prompt. I like to post short fiction sometimes, but I just haven't been working on anything short and bloggable lately.

Melody said...

Kim, I love this story! Thanks for sharing with us! I think Smiley is a great guy, and I felt so sorry for him.

Nymeth said...

yay, I'm so glad it's back!

I love that picture and I love your story!

Kim L said...

Melody and Nymeth-thank you!!!