King of the World

The following is a short story written for peer feedback in my creative writing class. It’s a piece I had started last year and turned into a rough draft, and here it is with a little more polish. It could stand to have a little more…something, but overall I’m pretty pleased with it. Enjoy! …or don’t, whatever.

Captain Troll stood at the helm of his mighty ship, looking down upon the mismatched crew busying themselves lashing sails, securing cannonballs, and swabbing decks. All the men had rounded heads turned to their “determined” faces, hairpieces and hats firmly snapped in place. Some were missing limbs, but what they lacked in arms and legs they made up for in loyalty to Captain Troll.

As for the captain himself, in keeping with the culture of his people he shunned shoes or clothing of any kind, and welcomed the brush of wind across his hard, shining skin. From his head sprouted a thick pouf of vibrant emerald hair, matched in color by the large jewel set in his navel. The captain’s lips curled into a mysterious smile while his overlarge, glassy eyes stared unblinkingly into the sky. He was a silent, but not unpleasant man.

Over the roar of wind and sea an engine could be heard, similar to that of a jet plane. It started faint, but quickly grew in volume. Keeping his eyes turned heavenward, the captain made out a familiar silhouette against the solid white sky as it flew closer to the ship. Dropping his altitude, Buzz skimmed over the fuzzy beige sea before alighting on the deck. His wings retracted into his flight suit with a pronounced click, and he gave the captain a brief nod in greeting. His pleasant expression was a sharp contrast to the urgency of his arrival, and he wasted no time in delivering his message.

“Captain! I’m afraid I have some bad news from land. The evil queen has crossed the borders of her kingdom into our lands, and is enslaving our people! With Iron Man missing for the last week, there’s no one to stop her.”

Captain Troll said nothing in response to the dark tidings, but nodded curtly and strode to the ship’s wheel to clang the great bell hung beside it. Immediately his men dropped what they were doing to take up their oars, sliding them through the ship’s hull. The men strained, and gradually the ship picked up speed, racing to join the fight against the injustice of the mad queen.

On land a fierce battle raged. An army of storm troopers were met by a defending group of Autobots in a cacophony of lasers and metallic screeching. Cut down by the troopers’ blasters, Bumblebee toppled to the ground and keened a mechanical death cry, calling for vengeance. Spurred by grievous rage, Optimus Prime laid waste to the storm troopers with a vicious swipe of his blade, and then morphed into truck form to methodically crush their lifeless bodies, running over them again and again. At the same time, Predator disemboweled a fallen GI Joe and yanked off his head with one arm, holding it aloft in brutal victory. Godzilla stormed into battle and was immediately challenged by the Power Rangers, who quickly bonded to form the mighty MegaZord. The ground shook under the weight of the grappling leviathans, and when the Rangers called for the power sword, Godzilla came down with a mighty crash, crushing beneath him an unlucky infantry of green army men.

When Captain Troll sailed into the fray, his ship was immediately besieged by a pack of fierce Bionicles who attached themselves to its sides, ripping the Lego ship apart brick by brick. They tore into his crew next, arms, legs, and heads raining down around them in a haze of plastic carnage! The captain quickly fled the ship, seeing no other choice but to abandon his crew to their grisly fates. Suddenly the ground dropped out from beneath him as he was snatched in an unyielding pair of talons. The Decepticon Starscream had Captain Troll firmly in his grasp, and carried him over a battlefield full of the dead and dying. A moment later he was dumped unceremoniously to the floor. Getting to his feet slowly and clumsily, he stood and found himself staring into the face of the evil queen herself.

Barbie towered over him in a billowy, glittering cloud of a bubble gum pink evening gown. A sparkling tiara had been sloppily glued into her mess of poorly shorn, blonde hair. The uneven strands framed a face that was completely devoid of emotion; too-white teeth framed by a lipsticked, vapid smile, and blue eyes that were terrifyingly bright and empty. She was flanked on either side by her guards, Skipper and Stacy, who would gladly sink their mismatched stiletto heels into his eye at their queen’s command.

“So, Troll, you thought you’d come back and fight me, did you?” She tilted her head back awkwardly to laugh, before taking a step toward him. Captain Troll, both unable and unwilling to answer, could only stare at her with his ever-present smile. This seemed to anger Queen Barbie even further.

“You don’t stand a chance, you know. And once I’ve captured Iron Man, no one will dare challenge me! Now, where is your heroic Iron Man?” Barbie bent stiffly at the hip and slowly reached out one hand toward him. Still, Captain Troll gave nothing but silence.

“I’ll only ask you one more time,” she purred in a deceptively calm voice. “Where – is – Iron Man?!”

At his continued silence, she darted her hand at the green jewel in his belly but her fingers, being fused together, could get no grip on it and slid away unsuccessfully. She grew enraged and shrieked, “Into the gas chamber with him!”

The harpies Skipper and Stacy fell on him, subduing him quickly and carrying him to the cavernous mouth of the chamber. Captain Troll was tossed in, the door slammed shut, and he laid face-down to await his end. Presently the chamber began heating up, growing hotter and hotter with each passing second, and Captain Troll began to smell his own glorious hair starting to burn…

“JAMES! WHAT ARE YOU DOING?” James’ head snapped up at his mother’s scream. She stormed into his room and yanked the Easy-Bake Oven’s plug from the wall, then upended and shook it. The troll fell out onto a Spiderman-patterned bedspread, its hair a blackened, sticky mess. The smell of burning plastic quickly filled the tiny bedroom. She picked the figure up by one distorted foot, looked from it to her son, and then down at the Barbie dolls on the floor. Her arm dropped to her side and she sighed wearily.

“I wish you’d stop stealing your sister’s dolls, you know she cries when you cut their heads off. Clean this up and give your sister her toys,” his mother said, turning away with the troll in hand. Captain Troll was, no doubt, on his way to a very informal funeral. After a few seconds she stuck her head back in the door, remembering something. “Oh, and I found the guy you lost last week while I was vacuuming. The cat must have batted him under the couch.” James was on his feet and darting down the stairs in a flash, his mouth twisted into an ecstatic grin. He swiped the treasured Iron Man figure from the floor and clutched it in his hands, already thinking of the worlds created and the worlds yet to be.


About bethsmash

What put the smoosh in bethsmash? Was it drugs? Nope. Was it a coincidental combination of non-toxic-but-still-life-altering chemicals being mixed in giant, uncovered vats conveniently placed under a rickety walkway? Maybe. Was it a childhood of stolen glimpses at too many horrific movies, and borrowed books full of the gory, terrifying material that would lead to adolescent years full of sleepless nights? You betcha.
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One Response to King of the World

  1. Ian says:

    This is awesome Beth. I want to see the movie.

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