“If this is heaven I dislike it.”
“Welcome to hell! We meet again!” Said the old man.
“I am the guardian of hell. Here are your chains. You will be wise enough to put them on.”
“So my curse has taken effect?” Said the sorcerer.
“No it was a blessing. My curse has taken effect. Ha!” The old man cackled till his rib crackled.
“OH MY GOD! Sir your rib!”
“Relax prisoner. I can’t die twice. Anyway how did you come here?” He said so fixing his rib.
“I shall tell you so. The saga of my chronicles! My poor fate. My wretched dest-”
“Aye! Get on with it.”the man said cracking his other rib.
And the sorcerer plunged into narrative.
“One must never lay his hand on another’s bird else one may lose the bird in his hand and in this case his hand too. You’ve heard of Buckey, eh? That horrid hunchback with his walking stick. We had a tiff over my secret magic peanuts.” The wizard took a pause to sob. “I could swear by Lady Zagherchourazzpagerberg! I’d never hurt a baby dragon. But that beast just got onto my metaphorical nerves. Now I am a witty man. I wouldn’t have done this but desperate times call for desperate measures. So I did the next right thing- hiding my peanuts where that oaf wouldn’t find them (in a very secure location). Next morning they were gone! Now nothing vanishes into thin air.”
” Except pixie dust and unicorn hair and-”
“Ok peanuts don’t vanish.”
“Enless they’re bewitched or-”
“THEY’D BEEN STOLEN! I didn’t expect them to be stolen from the grass under my window. It was obvious that our gardener had done it and he wasn’t hard to find. I clearly remember that brute mockingly smirk at me. Me! Sorc Soxsmil Veribbad!”
“What in the name of the devil does that nonsense mean?”
“Pardon me my good man for I have not yet aquainted you to myself. I am he.”
“Please to meet ya Mr. Verybad. I’m Ignyor. Funny we didn’t get a chance to introduce ourselves even when we had that encounter. Now as dead men we’ve reunited. Pirates say dead men tell no tales. Go on with your tale pal.”
“It’s Sorc Veribbad…. Nevertheless I finally found my man who had been searching the black markets frantically for a person willing to trade my poor peanuts with almonds. You wouldn’t believe what a shock it was to see my former gardener sitting on the street with a placard across his neck saying ‘free peanuts for an almond’. Old Bill was always a handful the moment he stepped out of town.”
“And out of his mind.”
” You can guess what happened next. I ever so politely ordered him to return the peanuts. Negotiations failed. ( Even though I ever so politely offered him an almond.) But the worst was yet to happen-”
“The dragon of Brokenjaw swallowed you killing you on the spot?”
“Goodness no! Buckey came back. And we had this lame wild goose chase. He’d figured out Bill was behind it all. I can disguise myself but Bill can’t. He climbed up the marigold tree for protection not seeing Bucky already up there trying to get a bird’s eye view. Bill tried to jump down but…” He shuddered.
“The tree collapsed killing them both? I knew it. This is getting dark.”
“No! Stop doing that. It’s not that brutal. What actually happened is Buckey cut off three of his fingers and severed his hand with the walking stick and managed to snatch a peanut.”
“With the walking stick? No!”
“Didn’t I tell you. The walking stick can shoot lasers and has a blade. Bucky is a shrewd fellow. Never fall for hunchbacks. Papa used to say. Are you in heaven Papa? I am sorry I failed you.”
Ignyor whistled.” But how did you die?”
” Oh I was just getting started on that story. That ne’er do well Bill came to me asking for help. I promised to restore his fingers.”
“For now restore my ribs.”
(Liked it? Don’t worry the sorcerer will continue his story in The curious case of the heinous cellotape #2)