Nano 2017 Lego Thing Part Twenty Five
“I sometimes feel like I should be more attached to my writing software,” typed Alex into his chat program. “But I have no love for it whatsoever.”
“Haha, yeah?,” said his friend.
“Yeah, I mean, today I’m not even using the software I normally use because I just didn’t feel like it. Normally I just use Scrivener, which has all of these elaborate features and options. I got it because there was a really good deal years ago when I first tried Nanowrimo, and it seemed like the default software that a lot of writers I enjoyed were using.”
“Ooooh I’ve heard of that. It looks pretty neat!”
“Yeah it’s okay. But I use precisely none of its features. I basically just open up a document in it and start typing, and then I just make a pile of completely unorganized documents that don’t take advantage of any of its powerful features. I feel like all of its extra stuff is just weird fluff that distracts me from writing. And now, I’m being distracted from my writing by writing about it.”
Selena walked over to Alex’s table, which startled him. “Did you see the story in the local newspaper this morning?”
Alex had a blank expression on his face. “I’m sorry, what? I’m so confused right now. You’re over here asking me a thing?”
“You’re a writer, aren’t you? I thought you might have looked at the newspaper.”
Alex shook his head. “I can’t even remember the last time I looked at a newspaper. In fact, I didn’t even know this town still had a newspaper.”
“Well that’s good to know. You should look the story up online sometime. They wrote a smear piece on me. Gotta go, looks like the line is building up.”
“Oh man!,” said Alex as Selena left. He searched around the internet trying to remember the name of the local newspaper, and finally stumbled upon the janky web site for the Hillsvale Chronicle.
OUR TOP STORY TODAY: Beanland? More Like MEANLand!
A local coffee entrepreneur has taken to insulting the city her store is in on a daily basis, and is offering customers a discount for joining in the mean parade! Local cafe owner and barista, Selena Myles, is offering any patron a discount for publicly stating that they will never attend our fair city’s exceptional seasonal ice skating rink.
This is the most absurd bit of community discouragement I’ve ever seen in my life. And what’s worse, it seems to be working. Sales at Selena’s Beanland shop are going strong and more and more people are flocking to her shop instead of other local haunts.
When I asked Ms. Myles about her new “promotion,” she just laughed a little and said “I have no real way of tracking whether or not people actually hold true to their pledge. It just started as a fun lark. The city wastes piles of money on the skating rink every year, and does nothing to promote local businesses.”
I tried to explain that the skating rink only encourages people to spend more time downtown, but Ms. Myles wasn’t having any of that. She’s well-known in our community for her borderline-violent appearance and her distant way of interacting with customers.
This author encourages you to attend our excellent skating rink and not Ms. Myles’ hostile coffee shop.
Alex walked over to the counter. “I read the piece. I almost gagged on my mocha. Funny thing is, I think it’s actually probably going to drive more business in here. Most of the comments on the story were defending you.”
“Haha, yeah, I’m not too worried about it,” said Selena. “The people who own the restaurant next door are pissed. Apparently I’ve been cutting into their lunch buffet sales.”
“I bet they don’t like the lack of support they’re getting from the city either. If only I were a real writer, I might actually write a story about this.”
Selena blinked. “Are you not a real writer?”
“Oh god no, I just write random nonsense until some bars fill up and some numbers go up.”
Cordelia and Dave slowly lifted the plastic cube off of the Medieval Lego display, and chaos ensued.
“Now’s our chance!,” yelled Galadriel. She pointed up at Dave. “He’s the stupid one, we head in that direction! Vikings, prepare the ropes!”
The entire party ran straight at Dave. He screamed and ran into the back room. Cordelia hoisted up a large cup of water to pour on the tiny flames. The vikings unleashed some ropes they had quickly fashioned out of various bits of grass and began to lower themselves onto the floor of the Lego store. Catwoman descended upon her whip.
Lego Galadriel rode quickly atop Ambrosias to the edge of the display. “Okay boy, we’re going to just jump down there and land! Your legs are permanently attached, so as long as land perfectly square, neither of us will be injured! Let’s go!”
Ambrosias took a flying leap off the edge of the display as the water came pouring down out of Cordelia’s cup. The torrent of water flew just under Lego Galadriel and her dog companion as they floated down to the floor and landed perfectly. “Quickly everyone! Out of the way before we are doused with water!”
The Vikings and Catwoman gathered up their ropes and they went running after Galadriel, who made her way out into the mall.
Cordelia heaved a heavy sigh. “No one is going to believe this story. I’ll...I’ll just blame it on Dave. Dave! Get out here!,” she yelled. “I need you to mop this up! I’m going to move this display into the back before we open.”
The mall was just starting to come to life in anticipation of Black Friday shoppers, so there was enough light for the Lego Adventurers to see their way.
“Where are we going?,” said Catwoman. “This appurs to be a vast world filled with various shops!”
Galadriel squinted. “I’m not sure, yet. But it’ll come to me. It always does!”
At that moment, the largest lights in the mall came on, and the flood of shoppers came pouring in. To the Lego Adventurers, it was a moment of bedlam and chaos. Loud booming sounds and giant humans flooded the corridor in front of them, and they all quickly hugged the wall at Galadriel’s urging.
“This is not good!,” yelled the Viking Chieftan. “There are hundreds of them! I never knew there were so many!”
“Okay ethereal mysteries, don’t let me down!,” said Galadriel. She snapped her fingers and suddenly they all disappeared in a flash of blue light.
“Hey Robin,” said Frank Honey. “Did you know I started my life as a character in a video game!”
“Wow, cool!,” said Robin. “I love video games! I started my life as a weird drawing, and eventually I somehow became a tiny plastic man.”
“That’s great!,” said Frank. He took a big bite of his donut.
“So, uh...I don’t mean to be the one asking an annoying question here,” said Robin. “But what are we doing in this donut shop here in Lego City? Do you think the evil library criminal might be here?”
“No idea!,” shouted Frank Honey. “I just like to start each day with a donut, even though I’m made of plastic and I don’t technically need to eat.” He took another big bite of his donut, trying not to worry too hard about where all these donuts actually went when he ate them.
“I put the text from this chapter back into my Scrivener document, and it counted two fewer words than Google Docs did. I don’t I can’t I don’t know what to do with this information,” typed Alex into his chat program. “Like…how does that even happen?”
“Hahaha, maybe you should just keep using Scrivener?”
“But now I feel so limited! I don’t know what I’m going to do. I think I’ll distract myself by writing a passive aggressive blog directed at the local newspaper.”
Dear Hillsvale Chronicle—
To Whom it May Concern, I read your recent article about Beanland, in which you insinuated there was something sinister going on there. I can assure you that no such thing is happening. The whole “Don’t Support the Skating Rink” thing is just a lighthearted joke that people really took to heart, because the city really isn’t giving local businesses the support they need.
You should know this, because you are a newspaper. Newspapers haven’t been relevant in the real world since at least 1997, and I’m sure the city would much rather fill your prime real estate with more kitschy theme businesses than see your ailing product keep getting churned out. I know that you have to suck up to the local officials so they don’t just buy out your property, and I sympathize with you.
Beanland is popular because they have the best coffee in town, and that means they have a target painted on their heads. If you ever achieve success or some readership again, you might remember what that feels like.
“There, I feel better.”
“Haha, wow, I feel like the newspaper isn’t going to love that.”
Alex shrugged and then started typing. “Let them come. If they write about me they’ll probably make the mistake of linking to my web site, and then I’ll get a bunch of hits out of it.”
“You’re almost done with Nanowrimo!”
“Wh…what? I feel like I just barely started.” Alex looked at the calendar app on his computer. “Oh holy crap you’re right.”
“Do you have the ending of your story planned?”
“A better writer would say yes. I should…I should probably set up some kind of arc that can carry us through the third act of the story. Considering it never really had an act two, this could be interesting.”
Count Dugan acquired the supplies needed to repair Lord Grimlow’s boat, and made his way back out to sea with some generous help from Amelia’s Uncle. Turns out he was an accomplished shipwright on the island, and was able to lend Dugan a small vessel to quickly get back to his friends, and a man to pilot it.
That man was Franklin Honey.