Saturday, May 28, 2011

The Further Adventures Of Doric and Limps...Or Maybe Limps and Doric

I can remember a day when we had far better rations than this crap.

Times change, Doric.
Funny, Limps.
Funny? What's funny Doric?

Time. Time is the one thing in all the universe that doesn't change. Time is the leech, the sapper of spirit that holds the world in its steaming gut and asks everything else to wither away while time itself remains untouched.

That does it, Doric. Now you're frightening me.
Limps, frightened? What would bring the mighty Limps to his arthritic knees?
Not that sort of frightened, Doric. Just the thought that after all this time you're all the way and then some to insane.

There you go again with time, Limps. Didn't I just tell you that...
That seals it, I'm going down by the river, Doric.
What's at the river, Limps?

A river, you idiot. Swift flowing water, jumping fish, cool breeze, memories of fishing with my brothers. What man needs a reason to go sit by a river?
If you need to take a piss then go take a piss, Doric. I promise not to look. Swear that when I meet Old Crutch I'll spit in his eye if I do.

Not even Old Crutch could stand having you around for long, Limps, so that's not an oath to hold a man's honor to.

So you are going to take a piss. Go ahead. Piss in the river while remembering your even dimmer-than-you brothers, who, while long gone, would never think to make an excuse just to hide taking a piss.

This time you're going too far, Doric. Mentioning my dead brothers is going to get your pate rattled...

Oh stop already with time, Limps...there is no time you blithering...hear that?

Hear what?
Something's moving down by the river.
I don't hear anything Limps.
Well something's moving.

What's it sound like?
Sounds like your nerves are fraying, Limps.

And I shouldn't be unraveling, Doric? Do you have any idea what this place is going to look like tomorrow?
Yes I do, Limps, but far be it for me to cut you off when you're on a roll...

When true dawn awakens the valley those hills will look like they're crawling with dungbeetles, Doric. But they ain't bugs they'll be the Stitch jockeying for who gets to die first.

For who gets to die...

Yeah, just like I said. Even as we sit here blowing smoke out our asses the Stitch are looking to cut the throats of potential rivals to see who gets to impale himself first on our outer spike wall. The glory of being a twitching, screaming slab of cooling meat for one's brother to gain a foothold over the spikes is to them an honor above most anything else, Doric.

And then there's the fire pits, Limps...

The fire pits, sure. 20 spans wide and 10 deep. Them who missed the glory of being skewered on the spikes will try and outrace the rest to be the first into the pits. Line upon line will throw themselves in until the pits are full of well done Stitch so's the rest can walk across without a by your leave.

That's still over 200 paces away, Doric, and then our longbow-men can begin.

And those boys can hit what they aim at, Limps, no doubt about it. But how many bows do we have? Less than a thousand last time I heard. But okay, so they start thrumming them bowstrings like a drunken bard at Springwell Fest, and even more bodies pile up.

And that blocks the way for more of the oncoming Stitch who'll be full of arrows and burning feet, Doric, so then our crossbow's get to open up and hit the easier targets, right?

Right you are, Limps. I wouldn't want to be them for all the rum in Easthaven. But if you take the time to do the paper ciphering, and all them arrows used up, that still leaves more than twenty thousand screaming, frothing, stinking Stitch hitting our front lines right about the time most of us will have shit ourselves half blind.

Twenty thousand against eleven isn't a betting man's odds, Doric, but they'll be exhausted and pretty much sucking old Crutch's farts after running all that way, right? And the cavalry will flank the ones in the rear too, you have to think about that.

We have less than 300 calvalrymen, Limps, and tell the truth now, how many of them can really ride? Really ride and swing a sword, Limps. Ride and swing a sword and stay in the saddle?

Better than no cavalry at all, Doric.

I agree, Limps. So our cavalry by mistake takes out an even number of Stitch, or lets be magnanimous and say five to six hundred. Say they even create all sorts of havoc in the ranks, but the Stitch are born in havoc, live in havoc, attack in havoc, and fight and die in havoc. Just like the spikes and the pits, they'll be jostling to be the first one run down by a horse. You've seen a Stitch before, right, Limps? How much more does a horse weigh?

They're not that big, Doric.

Close enough, Limps, close enough. Anyway, I think I'll go down by the river.

Want some company, Doric?

Why not. Just don't piss anywhere near where I'm drinking, Limps.

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