Chapter Three

Ah, the hidden wonders of Pingo!

3: Churpo Derp…Sakooka Unn (Chapter Three…Settling In)

Dulp stood with Skippy in front of the Chief.

“Okay,” frowned the one-eyed, crusty old gob. “It’s time to help Skippy settle in.”

“What?” asked Dulp in confusion. “I showed him around already. My job is done. Why do I have to—”

The Chief cut him short with a well-timed finger pointed directly at his face.

“Your job is done when I tell ya it’s done!” he barked. “Now shut yer yap and listen!”

Dulp sighed and crossed his arms in a huff.

“Whatever…” he said unhappily.

The Chief held up two fingers of his right hand as he scowled at Dulp.

“Two things,” he growled. “First, Skippy needs a job…”

“What!” exclaimed Dulp in slight outrage. “He’s from the Skulls! He doesn’t need a—”

“Don’t argue with me!” yelled the Chief. “It’s what he wants, you pile of orc scat! He wants to experience gob life in Pingo, so I’m giving him a job! Now shut up and listen like I told ya!”

“Ugh…” grimaced Dulp.

He gave a brief, unhappy glance toward Skippy.

“You could have told me that,” he frowned.

“Sorry,” shrugged Skippy. “I thought you knew already.”

“He doesn’t know his bum from a hat,” said the Chief gruffly.

“I do, too,” mumbled Dulp.

The Chief gave him a menacing glare before turning his attention toward Skippy.

“Anyway…” he sighed. “Skippy, that key I gave you is to the hoochery.”

“What!” cried Dulp in even more outrage. “The hoochery! You can’t just give a stranger—”

“Quiet, you jackhat!” yelled the Chief. “Skippy needs a job, so I’m giving him one!”

This was all very unusual. The rest of the gobs weren’t even allowed to so much as look at the hoochery, much less have the key to it. There were only three locks in the entire village anyway: one for the larder, one for the hoochery, and one for the Chief’s hut, and the Chief carried all three keys on his person at all times. It was righteously unfair that Skippy just showed up and got to carry the key to the hoochery, but he was from the White Skulls, so Dulp couldn’t be too mad at him.

“Fine!” hissed Dulp. “Whatever.”

The Chief swore under his breath and then turned his attention back on Skippy.

“You’ve now got the job of Officer of the Hooch,” nodded the Chief. “You can dispense hooch as necessary, but we don’t want to run out, so make sure these nimnits don’t try and butter you up for any.”

The crusty old gob turned a scowl back upon Dulp.

“Show him where the hoochery is,” he said firmly.

If it wasn’t one thing, it was another. The old gob was really starting to get on Dulp’s nerves today. All of these orders were really cutting into Dulp’s free time, and if he wasn’t so scared of the Chief, he’d just pop him a good one. As it were, Dulp decided to protest yet again, not that it would do him any good.

“Why do I have to show him?” asked Dulp. “You know what? Get someone else to—”

The Chief cut him short once more.

“Shut up and give him a tour of it,” grunted the old gob. “After that, you can take a bottle for yourself.”

“Right this way, Skippy,” grinned Dulp as he motioned toward the East Quarter with both hands.


Skippy’s Field Notes #15:

Pingo village becomes more and more fascinating the more I learn about it! The gobs here have a “hoochery,” or a place where they keep their spirits, the strong alcoholic kind, not the rattling chains and draped bedsheets kind.

The hoochery is locked at all hours and can only be opened by a key the Chief holds on his person, which I now have possession of. I am now the “Officer of the Hooch,” and I shall do my best to live up to that title.

“Hooch” is the goblin term for alcoholic beverages, of which, the goblins of Pingo don’t make themselves, but instead “acquire” from nearby villages and travelers. The gobs take the hooch back to the village, hand it over to Fancy Niceclothes, and Fancy sends it over to the South Quarter for the bogos to handle. The bogos then alter the liquid somehow, but what that entails, I do not know. From what I understand, no gob really knows what the bogos do to it, though I’ve heard rumors of “witchcraft” and “unspeakable acts.”

After the hooch passes through bogo hands, they send it back to the North Quarter with Fancy, who then delivers it to the Chief. The Chief then takes the hooch in question and locks it up in the “hoochery,” or the hutch used for storing the altered alcohol.

I, for one, cannot wait to taste some of these fine spirits! It has to be a unique experience. However, I am much more interested in what the bogos do to the hooch in question to prepare it for consumption. I’ll have to ask them in person soon. Perhaps they’ll let me drink shots from between their possibly bare bosoms. You never know!

Isn’t this exciting!

S.P.W.


“I’m not done, cheese-head,” frowned the Chief. “You’ve got one more thing to do.”

“Right,” nodded Dulp.

“Once you show Skippy around the hoochery,” explained the Chief, “then he’ll be moving into your hutch with you.”

“Say what now?” asked Dulp with a raised eyebrow.

He wasn’t sure he’d heard that right.

“You heard me!” yelled the Chief. “Skippy’s got nowhere to stay, so he’s staying with you!”

“Aww, crap!” hissed Dulp.

“What was that!” growled the Chief.

“Nothing,” frowned Dulp. “Let’s head to the hoochery, Skippy.”

“That’s what I thought you said,” scowled the Chief.

Dulp decided to hightail it out of there before the Chief “requested” anything else. The old gob was becoming a real problem, and it was high time someone replaced him. It wasn’t going to be Dulp, but somebody needed to do it.

They made good time to the East Quarter and to the hoochery, but in all fairness, Pingo Village wasn’t very large.

“Here we are,” said Dulp. “This is the hoochery.”

They stood before a hutch that was slightly flatter than the others on account of a low ceiling. This hutch, however, was different in the fact that it was made purely from stone, had no windows, and had a good, solid oak door with a heavy iron lock barring its entry.

“Wow,” said Skippy as he visibly inspected the structure. “It’s a good thing we have the key.”

You have the key,” frowned Dulp. “Anyway, just open it, and I’ll show you around.”

Skippy retrieved the large iron key to the hoochery from his pocket and proceeded to fumble with the lock. He eventually turned the big key, popped open the lock, and pulled it from the latch.

“Keep ahold of that,” nodded Dulp.

“Why?” asked Skippy. “We can just set it—”

“Uh, uh,” said Dulp with a shake of his head. “One of the others will run off with it. Free access, then.”

“Uh, huh,” said Skippy as he screwed up his lips.

Dulp opened the heavy oak door, grabbed a hanging lantern off of the stone wall of the passageway before them, and took a minute or so trying to light the lantern with some flint and steel set aside on a hanging wooden shelf. Once the lantern was lit, he motioned for Skippy to follow him.

“This is a pretty small hutch,” said Skippy in confusion. “Why all the secu…ri…ty….”

Dulp held the lantern up high as they walked down a flight of stone steps into the main body of the hoochery. The light shown upon the large underground storage facility to display the shelves upon shelves of hooch stored away for later use and consumption.

“Welcome to the hoochery, Officer Skippy,” smirked Dulp.

The place was much larger than it looked from the outside. The underground warehouse had to be huge in order to store all of the precious hooch available to them. It was definitely Pingo’s greatest treasure.

Dulp walked down the main aisle of shelves, those shelves glistening with bottles and bottles of life-numbing hooch, and he gave his tour as he led Skippy to the back where the dispensers were located.

“This is where we keep all the hooch, obviously,” said Dulp. “We acquire these bottles, hand them over to Fancy, and Fancy takes them over to the bogos. The bogos do something to them, and then Fancy takes them back to the Chief. The Chief brings them over here and puts them in storage. You get that job now, the Chief’s job.”

“Fascinating…” whispered Skippy as he inspected the bottles around him. “Why do you take them over to the bogos? What do they do with it?”

“Beats me,” shrugged Dulp. “Whatever they do, it grants the hooch special properties.”

“What properties?” asked Skippy.

“You get drunk off it, for one thing,” grinned Dulp.

“Yeah, but—” began Skippy.

“You can set it on fire,” nodded Dulp.

Ooookay,” replied Skippy. “But that’s—”

“You can even treat wounds with it,” smiled Dulp. “It’s awesome stuff.”

Riiiiiggghhht…” said Skippy cautiously. “Does it do anything else?”

“Eh, some minor stuff,” shrugged Dulp. “Nothing spectacular.”

“Well, I want to know,” frowned Skippy. “What else does it do?”

“Eh, it destroys undead,” shrugged Dulp again.

“Say what now?” asked Skippy.

“It destroys undead,” repeated Dulp. “It also grants our kind limited powers for a short period of time…super strength, super reflexes, super speed…that kind of thing. The power you get depends on who drinks it, so…like I said…nothing special.”

“Seriously?” asked Skippy in audible disbelief.

“Yeah,” replied Dulp. “After the bogos are done with it, it has some kind of connection to the Made Place, so we stick it in here to keep it safe. I mean, it gets you drunk, for crying out loud! We gotta keep it locked up.”

“What…in the…uhhh…Heckens…” said Skippy slowly, “do the bogos do to it? How in the Heckens can it do all that stuff!”

“Beats me,” shrugged Dulp. “They do something…unholy…to it. Pee in it? Squeeze boobie juice into it? I don’t know. Maybe Jenny Crazy Eyes puts a curse on it. I have no idea.”

“Fascinating…” breathed Skippy.

“My friend Burto thinks they drink all of the evil out of it,” nodded Dulp, “cause that’s what bogos run on, you know…puuuure evil…Yep, they suck out all the evil, and everything that’s left is good, so they send it back over here…Makes sense to me.”

“And now I’m in charge of it…” said Skippy in a strange, excited voice.

“Yep,” nodded Dulp. “The Chief must really trust you to give you that key. Personally, I wouldn’t trust any gob with it, not even myself…especially myself…I mean, if we hired someone to guard it that was from outside the village…like a human or something…I’d trust them with it, but not one of us…especially not one of us…Ugh…It’s not fair! It’s like the Chief thinks you’re from a different race…”

“Oh, uhhh—” began Skippy.

Dulp suddenly had a revelation, a strange and alien thought that had entered his brain. He now knew why the Chief had entrusted Skippy with such an important task. He gasped as he looked over the foreigner in the lamplight, his dark eyes widening in surprise as it came to him all at once.

“By the Great Gob!” he choked out. “That’s what’s going on, isn’t it! That’s why the Chief gave you the key! I can’t believe I didn’t see it before!”

Skippy paled in the lamplight as his ugly face took on a look of sudden panic.

“Listen, I can explain—” he began.

“You’re wearing boots!” exclaimed Dulp.

“I came here from…Wait, what?” replied the ugly gob.

“It all makes sense now!” gasped Dulp. “You found boots that fit gob feet!…Oh, my Great Gob…Oh, I should have known. That old bastage doesn’t want us soaking up any spilled hooch through our feet skin. I should have known…”

“Oh, uhhh, yeah…” nodded Skippy.

“Gob, oh, Gob,” said Dulp with a shake of his head. “If I had that key, I’d be constantly drunk. As it stands, I can already feel the floor juices sinking in…You are one lucky gob, Skippy.”

“Uh…huh…” replied Skippy slowly.

“Here, throw me a bottle of hooch, and I’ll show you,” said Dulp confidently.

“You want me to do what now?” asked Skippy.

“Hold the lantern and then throw me a bottle of hooch,” ordered Dulp.

Okaaaay…” said Skippy.

Dulp handed him the lantern and waited as Skippy took a large, dark bottle of hooch off of the nearest shelf.

“Now toss it to me,” said Dulp confidently.

Skippy tossed him the bottle with his right hand while holding the lantern with his left.

Dulp ducked down, and the bottle landed perfectly upright on his bald, round head. He balanced it for a second before dropping it into his hands.

“Do it again,” he grinned as he handed the bottle back to Skippy.

Skippy took back the bottle and tossed it again.

Dulp turned, kicked up the large bottle with the back of his left heel, swiveled, and caught it upright on his head again. He balanced it there for a moment and handed it back to Skippy.

“One more time,” he said as he held up the index finger of his right hand.

Skippy tossed the bottle one last time.

Dulp turned, kicked up the bottle with the back of his left heel, kicked up the bottle with the back of his right heel, bounced the large glass container off his rump, swiveled, and caught it upright on his head again. He balanced it there for one more moment, lowered his head, and dropped the bottle back into his hands.

“Told you,” he grinned as he gripped the big bottle with both hands. “The floor hooch has sunk in. I always get super-duper adroit when I have hooch.”

“That…is…in…credible!” exclaimed Skippy. “Amazing! I had no idea goblins had such magic hidden away!”

“Eh, that’s just a parlor trick,” shrugged Dulp. “It’s not really all that useful. Now, getting drunk? That’s the real magic.”

Riiiiiight…” replied Skippy with a raised eyebrow.


Skippy’s Field Notes #16:

Goblins have real magic hidden right underneath their noses! I can’t believe no one’s ever heard of this before…

The hooch goblins have is significantly altered by the bogos in some way that gives the gobs magical powers when they imbibe the enchanted brew. I don’t know if it has the same effect on bogos as it does gobs, but from what I’ve learned, it appears the effects vary between the gobs I’ve spoken to. Dulp becomes super adroit, Yappa becomes super strong, and the Chief, old as he is, gains super speed.

I’ve even heard of stranger powers than this, though! Apparently, Fancy gains an aura of radiance that makes everything around him love him to the point where they can do no harm to him, and even Dulp’s friend, Burto, becomes invisible when he imbibes the enchanted liquid! Invisible! Can you believe it!

As someone who grew up in a household filled with liquor, now I’m beginning to wonder if goblin hooch will do anything for me, or if it just works on gobs, goblins in general, or just the gobs or goblins from Pingo.

I’ve never heard of goblin hooch before, and as far as I know, neither has anyone else. Goblin villages have been raided in the past, burned to the ground, in fact, but no one has ever mentioned strange powers gained by any alcohol looted from the sacked premises.

I know if I had my wish, I would gain the power of true sight. Such a power would further my research to untold heights, allowing me to see the true nature of things, and I would never, ever, of course, use this power to see through women’s clothes, unless important research dictated otherwise.

I will have to experiment with some goblin hooch later on to see if my theory is correct about what this hooch will do for me. At best, it probably just acts as a normal liquor. At worst, it may be a poison to anyone other than a goblin, but I’ve never heard of anyone being poisoned as such. Hopefully, it isn’t a poison to other races. That would spoil the fu…uhhh…limit the usefulness of such an incredible discovery.

Even so, isn’t this amazing!

S.P.W.


“Anyway, we’re here,” motioned Dulp. “Here are the hooch dispensers.”

Before them on the far stone wall were two large, finely-made, blackwood cases with glass lids, and any observer could see two strange-looking devices set within them. These devices were, of course, the hooch dispensers. Each dispenser looked like a backpack made of brass, with dials, gauges, and pumps upon them, and each had a large “wand,” or pipe-device, attached to a bendable metal hose for the purpose of shooting out streams of pure raw hooch.

“Those don’t look goblin made,” said Skippy.

“Oh, Heckens, no,” replied Dulp with a shake of his head. “These were made by some gnome. Yeah, this gnome guy crashed a big metal whirlybird right smack into the center of Pingo a short time after the village was founded. He choked out his name, “Al Kemmy,” just before he bit it. He had these two dispensers with him. Only thing that wasn’t smashed to bits.”

“Fascinating…” breathed Skippy. “What do these things do, exactly?”

“Took us awhile to figure that out,” nodded Dulp. “Eventually, some old gob got the idea to pour hooch into these things, and that got them working…Yeah, you see these wands here on the sides of them? Those fire streams of pure raw hooch. Great for giving someone a hooch bath.”

“Amazing!” smiled Skippy. “I had no idea. They certainly look complicated, though.”

“Oh, yeah,” nodded Dulp. “You should see them when they’re powered up, streams of hooch firing…It’s a sight to see…Only thing is, if you’ve got both of them going, you don’t ever want to cross the streams.”

“Oh, really?” asked Skippy. “Why not?”

“Because the hooch is unstable enough in the bottles,” explained Dulp. “Double so in a fired stream…Crossing the streams? Having them impact each other at high pressure?”

He whistled once and shook his head.

“That’ll really get you drunk,” grinned Dulp.

Riiiiiigght…” replied Skippy with a raised eyebrow.


Skippy’s Field Notes #17:

The goblins of Pingo continue to amaze me. They have a pair of alchemically-powered devices of unknown function, though they are using them to “dispense” hooch, as that is all their simple minds have come up with in regards to said function of these devices. I have a suspicion as to the actual purpose of these devices, and I must say, it’s quite insidious, though I’ll get to that in a moment.

First, I believe that Pingo may be the final resting place of the late, great Durfonius Bizzledorp, a gnomish alchemist, inventor, and engineer of some renown.

In the research that I’ve come across on him, it’s said that he invented a way to fly without the use of catapults and wax paper, but like my educated colleagues, I had always written off those theories as madness. However, the gobs’ description of “Al Kemmy’s whirlybird” adds some merit to Bizzledorp’s madness and shines some light on what may have happened to him.

I came across Bizzledorp’s name in my early studies of goblins, because the old gnome had a severe hatred for them, and he wanted to, and I quote, “eradicate the foul pests from the face of Central Earth.” It’s said he had developed a spray that would “melt the disgusting creatures without ever having to engage them within range of seeing their ugly faces.”

Bizzledorp held the false belief that goblins melted in water, an idiotic notion born of ignorant peasants, but he also theorized that “rainwater was too impure for their ilk, causing only mild rashes and the stunting of mental growth.”

Here comes the interesting part. It’s said that the crazy old gnome had invented a way to temper water to its purist form by creating the Bending Ray Inundation Temporal Actuator, a mechanized construct that somehow stored sunlight and bent it in ways that heated out water impurities, then used a time-distorting effect to instantaneously cool the purified liquid to an easily drinkable room temperature. I believe these “hooch dispensers” are the actual fruit of Bizzledorp’s work, and that they contain the B.R.I.T.A.s in question.

Obviously, Bizzledorp’s theories were written off as nonsense and madness, as any educated scholar knows that goblins bathe in water just fine, as referenced in the well-written and excellently-illustrated research material: “Carmen Bogo’s Swim with the Bargeman, Tongue-Panting Bogie Tales, Volume III, Issue IX,” or so I’ve heard.

S.P.W.


“Well, I guess it’s time to show you to my hutch,” frowned Dulp. “Not like I want to, but…put in a good word for me with the Skulls, will you? If I’ve got to share my hutch with you for a while, maybe you could…”

“Sure thing,” smiled Skippy.

“Awesome!” grinned Dulp as he happily clutched the bottle of hooch in his hands. “All right…let’s head back to the North Quarter, and I’ll show you my humble home.”

“Got it,” nodded Skippy.

They made their way back through the hoochery, extinguished and put up the lantern, made their way outside, and then locked the hoochery door.

**********

Dulp sighed as he laid his hands down behind his head upon his bedroll. He crossed his legs as he bent one knee up into a comfortable position, brought his very own dark bottle of hooch to his lips, and took in a large gulp of premium hooch.

Oooooh, yeah,” he said in a deep voice. “That’s the stuff.”

“So what’s next?” asked Skippy from across the room.

The ugly little gob had his own bedroll set up, a really well-made wool-knit thing of royal blue with fancy gold embroidery. Dulp had no idea where Skippy had snatched such a great-looking bed-service, but the little gob was a White Skull, so he’d probably yanked it off of some princess’s corpse somewhere.

Skippy had something in his hands called a “sketchbook,” and he was drawing in it with a piece of charcoal. His question, though, was what held Dulp’s current attention.

“What do you mean?” asked Dulp in confusion.

“What are we doing next?” asked Skippy.

“Oh…uhhh…” replied Dulp in equal confusion. “I don’t understand.”

“What’s next on the day’s schedule?” asked Skippy.

“The day’s sche…?” replied Dulp. “Ooooh…That’s right. You’re here to ‘learn’ or something.”

“Exactly,” nodded Skippy.

“Well…” said Dulp as he screwed up his lips. “This is the time of day when we gobs kick back and relax. We don’t really have to do anything until we get hungry.”

“Okay,” replied Skippy. “And then what do you do?”

“Oh, uhhh…” said Dulp. “We find food.”

“I gathered that,” nodded Skippy. “How do you find food?”

“Whelp, let me think,” said Dulp as he took another swig of hooch. “We have Eating Time right after sunset. That’s when Fancy brings back food cooked by the bogos, and everyone in the North Quarter does a meet and eat in the Square. That’s actually how we know if anyone is missing, because no gob in their right mind misses Eating Time. Outside of that is Free Eating, and that involves a food raid.”

Ooooo!” exclaimed Skippy in sudden excitement. “A food raid!”

Dulp took another swig of hooch, shivered from the sensation of drinking the strong spirit, and then replied to Skippy’s weird enthusiasm.

“Eh, it’s not that exciting,” said Dulp. “It’s dangerous, is what it is.”

“I gathered,” nodded Skippy with a weird grin. “What does it involve?”

Weeeell…” said Dulp thoughtfully. “We either lie in wait by the north highway here, or we head on over to Kleiner Fluss…or Schafdorf…either one, and steal…err…acquire food directly from those villages.”

“Right, right,” replied Skippy. “How does that work? The raids, that is?”

“We don’t club anyone over the head or anything,” said Dulp as he took another swig. “We’re not orcs. Plus, we’re acquiring things from humans, and those giants are, like, sixty-two-feet-tall, so direct confrontation is out…”

“Fascinating, fascinating…” whispered Skippy.

Dulp took a large gulp of hooch, shivered again, and continued on with his explanation.

“So we have other means,” he finished.

“And?” asked Skippy. “What other means?”

“If we’re ambushing on the road,” said Dulp thoughtfully, “we set up a road hazard first to stop any wagons or carriages. A downed tree, a pit in the road, a controlled fire…that kind of thing. Once the mark stops, we grab what we can and make a run for it…Let me tell you, it’s sometimes safer to just nick from a village, because some of those wagon guards are well-armed with…err…spears, bows, crossbows…uhhh…boomsticks…”

“Boomsticks?” asked Skippy.

“Yeah,” replied Dulp as he took another drink. “They’re big metal rods that go boom. We originally called them ‘Made Deeg’s head explodied sticks,’ but that became a real hassle to keep saying, so we just shortened it to ‘boomsticks.’”

“Uh, huh…” replied Skippy.

“Yep,” said Dulp. “Ever since one of those things made Deeg’s head explodied, we just avoid any wagons or carriages armed with ‘em. We just let those suckers pass right on by.”


Skippy’s Field Notes #18:

According to Dulp’s descriptions, the gobs of Pingo have already had their first encounter with a blunderbuss. These gnomish weapons made an appearance in Hafenstadt right after I first came to study at the college. Fascinating devices, they work without the means of magic, just good old-fashioned gnomish ingenuity. The damage one of these ranged weapons can do is tremendous, so it doesn’t surprise me in the slightest that poor Deeg—may he rest in peace—was slain with one shot.

Funny story. I’ve actually fired a blunderbuss before. During my senior year, the boys at the fraternity had me hold one and aim at a large pumpkin. Rather than fill it with shot as we were supposed to, Beebo Minglehopper, our gnomish brother in the fraternity, made an exceptionally large metal ball to fire from the barrel instead.

Let me tell you, the force of the blast was so tremendous that it knocked me off of the stool I was standing on, shattered the pumpkin that was perched upon the Mayer Hall mess table, and blasted a large hole through the west wall, right into the neighboring sorority bath house.

I can still remember Ortrud Jung and Leopoldine Sauer running fully nude down the hall, shrieking at the tops of their lungs, their big, bare bottoms swaying to and fro, their large, naked, heaving bosoms bouncing up and down…Oh, I had a smile on my face for a week after that. Still one of my best memories of school.

Naturally, we blamed the whole affair on rats.

S.P.W.


Dulp took another drink from his bottle and sighed in contentment.

“Yepper, yepper,” he said after a moment of shivering. “Safer just to raid a village. You can sneak into a place like Kleiner Fluss in the middle of the night, nab some stuff real quick-like, and be out before any of the night watchmen notice you.”

“What happens if one notices you?” asked Skippy. “A night watchman, that is.”

Dulp tipped his bottle toward Skippy and nodded once.

“We have a plan for that,” he said with a grin. “We have a designated decoy. One of us dresses up in a cloak to look like a human child, we throw a rotten tomato or two, and then we run like Heckens.”

“Why dress up like a child?” asked Skippy, a look of slight confusion on his ugly face.

“We don’t want to lead them back here, do we?” replied Dulp. “We can’t let ‘em know gobs are behind the thefts, or we’ll get attacked.”

“Has the village ever been attacked?” asked Skippy.

“Nah,” said Dulp with a shake of his head. “That’s why we pay off the orcs. The Bloody Eye Clan oversees Pingo. Mess with us, and you get a whoopin’.”


Skippy’s Field Notes #19:

Ugh. The gobs of Pingo pay fealty to the Bloody Eye Clan, the worst of the worst when it comes to those cart-smashing, cradle-bashing, tooth-kicking orcs. These lowlifes are said to pay their own fealty to Duke Werner Jäger, the king of Auserset’s disowned younger brother. Why orcs would pay fealty to a human lord is beyond me, but I’ve heard rumors of the Duke…He’s feared by almost everyone.

It’s said that the Duke sacrifices young virgins to some unknown dark god lost to time and engages in dark rituals of an arcane, secretive nature, usually involving blood, and usually involving lots of it. All I can say is that the orcs of the Bloody Eye must fear him, and considering how loathsome the Bloody Eye Clan is, he must be terrifying indeed.

As for the Bloody Eye Clan…I’ve heard quite a bit about them. They don’t take prisoners except for young attractive women, and what they do with them should be obvious to anyone with half a brain. Otherwise, they rob, rape, and murder as they please, and they even kill each other on a regular basis. I’ve even heard that portly girls are their favorite food. They skin the poor women while they’re still alive and then roast them over a pit. Ghastly, ghastly stuff.

I, for one, know now more than ever how imperative it is that I ensure protection for this small village from such foul and terrible creatures as the orcs. Being under the protection of Hafenstadt will certainly drive away these blasphemies of nature and, of course, protect any vulnerable bogos from being defiled by these pig-sucking scum.

I can see it now…I, crowned hero of the village…lifted up by the slender, bare arms of grateful, nubile, naked bogos…given hugs and kisses of gratitude…caressed in their warm, very-nude embraces…

They may even name their little goblings after me.

Yes, I’m the completely-selfless, totally-looking-out-for-their-wellbeing, not-at-all-delusional hero they deserve.

S.P.W.


“Yeah, nobody messes with the Pingo, or they get the…” said Dulp, but he stalled out as he looked over at his new roommate. “Skippy?…Skippy, are you listening?”

The ugly little gob was staring off into space with a weird grin on his face, and he had both arms lifted in the air with his hands flat out as if holding something. He was also making a weird, hushed, “Haaaeeey!” sound over and over again.

“Skippy!” said Dulp in a louder voice.

The little gob snapped out of his strange reverie with a jolt and then picked up his sketchbook once more.

“Yep,” he replied as he composed himself. “I’m all ears.”

Goblins in the Mist: Chapter Three Copyright © 2022 Matthew L. Marlott


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