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Level 5 Writer
Ranked as Civilian
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(small warning: this one might drag on a bit)
It was a glorious day in the Kingdom of New Grounds. The sun shined brightly above the grand stone castle of the royal Fulps, around which an enormous crowd was gathered. Cheers could be heard from miles around, such that the sounds of the brass and strings from the orchestra in the center went largely ignored. All of a sudden, however, a shush fell upon the crowd; a large man, draped in velvety regal robes of orange and black, stepped out upon the balcony which overlooked them. By his side stood a young boy of but 14, and behind the boy stood yet two more children. The boy in front had gingered hair that sat reluctantly under his rather ostentatious crown, and carried two crossbows on his back for whatever reason; this was Prince Pico, who was known throughout the land not only for his royal blood, but most of all for his great victories against the anarchist insurgents known as the “Grand Order of Tortured Humanity”. The two behind him were his dear friends who stood by him every step of the way: a dark-skinned boy named Darnell, whose expertise with fire was immeasurably helpful in battle but caused a number of incidents regarding homes, monuments, and various aircraft, and a girl from the orient named Nene, whose skill with bladed objects devastated foes, though was rather worrisome given her rather self-destructive tendencies. The three stood proudly as King Fulp began his address:
“Good morrow, citizens of our fair kingdom of New Grounds. As you all are aware, today marks the 14th anniversary of the birth of my dear son, Prince Pico I. As such, I will be executing you all… just kidding, ha! Don’t mind me, just a little king humor. Anyways, we have all gathered here today to celebrate the great accomplishments of my darling little boy through art, games, and the mysterious moving pictures conjured by nymphs… what were they called again? Ah, yes, ‘Anymphations’. Every year, artists from around the kingdom gather here to showcase their magnificent works as tribute to young Pico, and a select few are invited to spend the day in the royal castle as testament to their ability. To those who received invitations, I congratulate you, and look forward to meeting you. And to all my citizens, thank you for attending, and let’s party like it’s 1599!”
As the king uttered his last digit, the hush of the crowd suddenly exploded into a sea of cheers. Citizens excitedly dispersed from the castle, eager to join the festival that lay spread throughout the town. Meanwhile, the select few artists made their way to the castle doors, fishing in their pockets for their treasured invitations. One such artist was Alex Sweetsnow, an artist of little renown. He held the invitation in his hand, still looking at it with the same surprised look he had when he’d received it in the mail weeks prior. He knew exactly why he received it – he’d made a number of anymphations in the past that he was quite proud of – yet he never thought he’d receive one due to his lacking the following of other great artists, like the rather cocky dinosaur or the strangely erotic crustacean. This mattered little, however, as it gave him the perfect opportunity to do what he’d wanted to do for ages: to inspire those others to further their artistic ability. For years he’d observe artist after artist come and go, their talent rather lacking yet still somehow managing to allow them to grasp the fleeting thing that is popularity. Irritated, he decided to put his own ability to good use, as a new goal for others to strive for. And so, as he entered the grand castle of the Fulps, he walked straight to the couch, sat down, pulled a pencil and paper out of his robe, and immediately got to work. His pencil flew across the paper, line after line coming together to bring life to an empty canvas. Others passed by, astonished by even the most cursory of passing glances; his plan began to succeed, as he overheard many reconsidering their own skill, and some even planning to get formal training afterward. Suddenly, however, a commotion began to arise outside.
Outside the castle stood a crowd of citizens from all around, socializing among themselves while also watching the party through the balcony and a number of windows. Attendees of the party and even members of the royal court took turns standing out on the balcony and addressing the crowd. At that moment, however, members of the crowd noticed something rather peculiar. “Hey, how long has that man been on the couch?” asked one, pointing to Alex who was too preoccupied in his drawing to notice. Suddenly, all eyes were drawn to him, who continued to sit and draw in the midst of the festivities. His peculiar anti-social behavior piqued the citizens’ curiosity, and soon, still unbeknownst to him, he’d accumulated quite the large following. This following escalated quickly, and soon he even had a faith in his name. “The Messiah of Leather Upholstery” they called him, and news of this was swiftly brought to his attention. Though a tad embarrassed, he continued sketching upon his paper, unwilling to stray from his original purpose.
Hours passed, and as the moon swam through the night sky, one by one the people exited the castle. Soon the castle was empty, outside a couple of stragglers which included the messiah himself. His duty complete, he sat at the balcony, and addressed the few of the crowd that remained. He spoke of art, science, philosophy, and even his strange hatred of South American assassins. The night dragged on, and as the last man left the balcony, he collapsed in profound drunken stupor.
The next day he appeared in the Featureless Village, and stayed a few days with the charming witch Emily, though his odd behavior during this time suggests he was charmed in quite a literal manner. Afterwards he was never seen again. Prophets of the Church of the Latter Day Upholsterers suggest that one day he shall return to these hallowed lands and bring cushioned, orthopedic salvation to us all. Until that time, however, his legend shall be passed down from generation to generation (or at least until the hype wears out).
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Total Medals Earned: 2,751 (From 451 different games.)