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|War of the gluttons (standard:horror, 710 words)|
|Author: jopoguerrero||Added: Jul 25 2008||Views/Reads: 1671/0||Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)|
"Many stories tell of faeries who steal human children, particularly newborn babies, and sometimes adults as well, particularly midwives and musicians. When babies are snatched, a faery changeling is left behind in the child's cradle. In some tales the changeling is just a piece of wood ‘glamoured' to look like a child; in others it is a sickly faery baby, or an old and peevish faery.” Terrry Windling, The Faery Reel It was called war of the gluttons: an eat-all-you-can feast fit for the crowned king of the land who has liberated the people from hunger. Amelio, the keeper of the mortal gates, was witnessing one – he was crouched in his hiding place not so far from the arena of food. He saw dozens of rows filled with great rations of victuals: dripping roasted animals in stakes; huge chops of meat in large platters; flowing rice in mammoth bowls; pickled fish and heads of cheese scattered everywhere; and, of course, gushing wines in gargantuan vats. Not minding each other, least their table manners, the people voraciously stuffed their mouths, and pockets, with the unending food. Plates, knives, spoons, forks and goblets were untouched – they used their bare and unwashed hands to load their bellies to the fullest. Amelio groaned as he quelled a rising vomit inside him. At the end of the rows stood a huge ornate platform, its center was adorned by a sparkling chair where a golden crown sat waiting to mount a king. After almost an hour, a trumpet gave out a blast. The feeding frenzy slowed down as a man in crimson robe royally marched toward the platform. He was Montes, the incoming king. He was about fifty, with small dark eyes set in plump, dissolute face. A sneer was glued to his mouth; and the flab under his chin consistently shook at his slightest movement. Montes was accompanied by three priests in hooded black robes, two elderly men in caped garbs and a dozen knights wrapped in seemingly inappropriate disc armors. The ceremony started with long invocations and hymns hoarsely mouthed by the priests. Afterwards, Montes knelt in front of the royal chair as the priests sprinkled him with what looked like crushed flowers. His crimson robe was removed and another set of garments was placed on him: a plain white gown, a shroud tunic, a long coat which reached to the ankles, a red main robe decorated with silver coronets and a gold silk scarf. One of the priests was about to set the crown on the head of Montes when Amelio suddenly threw his spiked iron ball mace. A cracking sound exploded as the weapon landed on the face of the priest: the crown went flying; the other priests and elderly men cowered in fear; the knights readied their weapons to protect Montes; and the people at the war of the gluttons, though still munching, were wide-eyed in confusion. With his shield and broadsword, Amelio ferociously attacked the knights – his sword hissed on the unprotected hips of three knights who tumbled clutching their innards – his sword clanged successively on the helmets of two knights who smashingly collapsed – his thunderous backswings broke the skulls of three more knights – a circling slash felled four knights with bones protruding from their sliced heels. Then he suddenly pointed the tip of his bloody broadsword on the throat of the trembling Montes. All of a sudden, the human skins of the priests, the elders, the dead knights and Montes fell off. Alas! They were crimson goblins: creatures who fed on the spirits of human babies. They steal infants by leaving changelings at their cradles; and after gulping down their essences, they cook the bodies for the various courses at the war of the gluttons. Some say that if a coronation of a crimson goblin was completed after a war of the glutton, they will rule over a certain region for a thousand years – feeding on human spirits. The people at the war of the gluttons roared in great disgust when they finally realized that what they were greedily eating were dead babies: roasted in stakes, chopped, ground, pickled and soaked in vats of blood. And before the people broke into stampede, Amelio cut off the head of Montes. Tweet
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