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The Wishbringer

by Timothy James Turnipseed 6 months ago in monster
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A Monstrous Interactive Adventure

You’ve endured centuries of darkness helplessly bound within a gem buried in the ruins of an ancient temple long consumed by jungle. Time has only sharpened your fury at the arrogant meat-bags who succeeded in trapping you here.

But now you hear the voices of mortals. You do not understand their language, but you don’t need to, because from this range, you can get into their minds.

Unsurprisingly, they don't know much. While descendants of your propserous and powerful worshippers, these people seem poor and uneducated. They are local villagers who fear the ruthless armed men forcing them to work. This kingdom has new name... Guatemala.

Strange sunlight that is not sunlight at all floods your chamber, illuminating the intricate pictographs carved into walls of stone. Now you see the workers are far from expert miners; their slipshod, amateurish supports are insufficient, and the chamber is in immediate danger of catastrophic collapse.

A young human male, his skin brown and his hair black, stumbles into the chamber carrying a pick somehow capped with a head of iron, not stone. He is also wearing a strange helmet on his head which screams magical light. The boy is young, barely 14, and he suffers the ignorance of having never been more than a half-day’s walk from the farming village where he was born. By destroying the wall to get into the chamber, the youth has foolishly broken the arcane seals and freed you from your ancient prison. You could take him right now.

But behind the boy, just out of range of your power, is a cartel henchman with a strange arma that rules the battles of this age. That man oversees the… “Dig” as they call it. Wait a little longer, and you can rule the head honcho, not some pathetic child minion.

There is an ominous rumble. Dust rains from the ceiling, and the boy looks up, eyes wide in horror. What do you do?

Get the Boy now! (Go to Roman Numeral II.)

Wait for the cartel Supervisor to get closer. (Go to Roman Numeral I)

I.

You wait for the armed cartel Supervisor to get closer so you can take him. But the boy shrieks as the roof caves in with a rumbling roar, burying you both. Once again, you are trapped in darkness, for who knows how many centuries more; perhaps forever! You are done here.

AN END

Return to the Beginning?

II.

You take the boy, easily leaping from the gem and into his brain.

Madre de Dios!” the boy cries aloud, terror raging through his mind. “Que es eso? Get out my head!”

The temple trembles about you as dust pours from the ceiling. You don’t have time to argue with a teenager. Immediately, you race for where the boy thinks the exit is, and for both your sakes, he’d better be right. Your memory may be photographic, but your knowledge of this temple complex is outdated, to say the least.

The Supervisor yells while pointing his arma – his… AK-47, as they call it – at you. Most men of power do not expect sudden violence from their erstwhile compliant slaves, and this fool is no exception. Mid run, you lightly dodge out of the line of fire and leap to punch the Supervisor directly in the larynx. He gags and grabs his throat with both hands as he sinks to his knees, letting his weapon clatter to the stone floor as you pass.

You could not possibly care less about the other miners, but the boy does, and he yells warnings.

“¡Peligro! ¡Corre corre!”

You join a herd of rushing mortals, male and female, stampeding out of the temple and into true sunlight as the ancient structure collapses behind with a roar of failing masonry and cloud of billowing dust. You wish you had more time to admire the beautiful blue sky and emerald jungle that you have not seen in ages. But standing on the temple court are grim men with more armas, and they corral the fugitives. The cartel almost captures you as well, except you make the boy invisible and run him past the line of kidnappers and into the dense foliage beyond.

You eventually come to a babbling brook twisting through the rainforest. Here, you leap from the boy’s brain into that of a colorful poison dart frog perched on a nearby tree. It is time to reward your rescuer.

“I am Tobar Miann you say, speaking as the frog. “You may call me, ‘The Wishbringer’, and whatsoever ye ask, I shalt surely make real.”

“Wow!” the boy exclaims. “A talking frog! Can you sing, too?”

You oblige the mortal; “Hello ma baby, hello my darlin’…”

“Stop singing!” the boy hisses harshly, glancing back with fear. “They will hear and capture us with the others!”

“Young mortal…”

“Um… hello? Senor frog? My name is…”

“Your name is ‘Francisco’, ‘Francis’ for short,” you say dismissively. “I know everything about you Francis; I was in your mind. Where did you think I learned that ridiculous song? Time is of the essence, my infantile friend. You made an easy-to-follow trail when I ran you through the brush, so your captors will be here soon, unless you… wish for safety?”

The boy sniffs and stands up straight.

“Why should I wish only for myself? What about my family and friends, kidnapped by those monsters! You will grant me three wishes?”

“That is standard.”

“Then I wish no one in my village has to work for the cartel!”

What will you do?

Kill everyone from Francis’ village. They don’t have to work if they’re dead (Go to Roman Numeral III).

Strike the people from Francis’ village with dysentery. They can’t work if they’re sick, and the cartel will employ healthy captives from some other village (Go to Roman Numeral IV).

Inspire the villagers into a battle where they defeat their captors (Go to Roman Numeral V).  

III.

You have elected to kill everyone from Francis’ village.

Francis gasps as his hand suddenly bursts into livid flame.

“Ah!” he screams, desperately swinging his hand in a futile attempt to shake the fire off. “It hurts! What’s happening?”

“You’re on fire,” you tell him.

The fire races up Francis’ arm as if it had been coated with gasoline. Soon he is a shrieking human torch, crashing madly through the thick jungle undergrowth as a pillar of oily black smoke rises in the stench of burning flesh. More screams can be heard further away, where the boy’s neighbors are suffering a similar fate. You also know that one family from that village has immigrated to some wonderful place called ‘America’ where they likely have no idea why they spontaneously combusted.

“Sorry Francis,” you muse calmly, heedless of the torturous screams. “After all, you specifically told me, ‘…I wish no one in my village has to work for the cartel.’ As dead people are utterly incapable of work, I have faithfully granted your request. And if this is not what you wanted, well! I'm not a mind reader for crying out loud."

AN END

Return to the Beginning?

IV.

You strike everyone in Francis’ village with raging dysentery.

A loud, deep rumble growls from Francis’ stomach. His eyes and mouth grow wide as he grabs his belly with both hands.

“Wah... what’s happening?” he pants, suddenly drenched in sweat. “I’m… I’m so hot…”

He retches and vomits. Then he grabs his trousers at the waist and viciously yanks them down to nosily empty his liquefied bowels.

“What have you done to me?” he wails.

“You have what mortals call a dysentery,” you calmly explain, “Everyone from your village suffers it as well, even that family who immigrated to that place you call… ‘America’. Those Baptist missionaries the cartel ran out of your village; they left their medicine, right?”

“Si, my grandmother hid it in a secret place.”

“Well then just follow the instructions on the label dear child; or at least find someone literate to read it for you. You and the rest of your pathetic village will be down for about 10 days, and fully recovered within two to four weeks. In the meantime, the cartel will find healthier villagers to dig up the temple for them. They can have it; I was the only thing in that place worth their trouble.”

Jueputa! This is not what I meant!”

“Look, you specifically told me, ‘I wish no one in my village has to work for the cartel!’ Well, now you no longer have to work for the cartel, do you? You’re welcome.”

“Look at what you’ve done to us!” Francis complains, tears streaming down his face, continually squatting to relieve himself. “How can we live like this for ten days?”

“Hey, you said you didn’t want to work for the cartel! If you didn’t intend for me to give you dangerously high fever and explosive, bloody diarrhea you should have said so. I’m not a mind reader, for crying out loud!”

“What do you mean you’re not a mind reader? You’ve already told me you were in my head. That’s how you knew my name, right?”

“True, but I am not allowed to read minds when it comes to granting wishes,” you explain. “That way, it's impossible for me to know for sure what you want, which frees me to interpret your wish however I see fit.”

“You’re enjoying this, aren’t you?”

“Oh no, no, no! No! …Yes.”

Pendejo! I refuse to continue unless you promise me you won’t screw up my next two wishes.”

You let out a tired sigh, but say, “I promise I will not screw up your next two wishes.”

“Are you lying to me?”

“No, my friend. The Wishbringer always keeps his word. I will not screw up your next two wishes.”

“Thank you.”

“But you must admit Francis, I came up with a clever solution to your problem. I mean, almost everyone is going to be fine.”

“Well, making us too sick to work was a smart… wait. What do you mean, ‘almost everyone is going to be fine’?”

“Well, some of your neighbors are too old or too young to fight off the infection before the missionaries’ medicine can help. I see you losing four out of the 42 people in your village. Hey 90% survival rate – not too shabby!”

Madre de Dios! You killed those people! I didn't want to kill anyone.”

“Well, how was I supposed to know that? I’m not a mind reader for crying out loud!”

Francis is finally done. He wipes himself with a broad leaf and stands up.

Go to Roman Numeral VI

V.

You have chosen to inspire the cartel’s captives to launch a surprise attack.

“Look ye to this brook,” you tell Francis, pointing down to the jungle stream. “Behold thy salvation upon the water!”

The water’s surface ripples, and the reflection of the jungle canopy is replaced with a view of the villagers and their armed cartel masters near the rubble of the collapsed temple. A large, obese woman with a speed that belies her weight suddenly jumps on one of the gunmen from behind, bearing him down to the ground on his face.

Inspired by this example, the other villagers spring to life, hurling themselves at their tormentors in desperate fury. Despite the chattering automatic fire that cuts them down with sickening regularity, the erstwhile sheep rout the would-be wolves and send all they don’t wound or kill fleeing for their lives down the muddy, unpaved jungle track. This victory comes with a cost; one in three of the villagers is wounded or dead.

Madre de Dios!” gasps Francis. You killed those people! I never wanted my wishes to kill anyone.”

“Well, how was I supposed to know that?” your reply, shrugging. “I’m not a mind reader for crying out loud.”

“What do you mean you’re not a mind reader? You’ve already told me you were in my head. That’s how you knew my name, right?”

“True, but I am not allowed to read minds when it comes to granting wishes. That way, it is impossible for me to know for sure what you want, which frees me to interpret your wish however I see fit.”

In the brook below, one of the men raises his fist.

“They beat us!” he shouts, “Made us their slaves and almost buried us in that evil temple. They forced themselves on our wives, sisters, mothers, and daughters! Death to these gran huecos! Death!”

Here, the enraged villagers let out a roar, grab rope from the dig site and then begin to hang their badly beaten prisoners from the nearby jungle trees.

“They should not do that,” Francis says, shaking his head. “Hanging them makes us no better then they are. We’re supposed to be the Good Guys.”

“What is Good, Francis?” you muse. “What is Evil? No, my infantile friend. There is neither good nor evil, only power; the power to hold off death for as long as possible, while you live as pleasurably as possible.”

“And if others get in the way?”

“Then you get them out of your way.”

“I am sorry Senior Wishbringer, but that is ridiculous,” Francis protests. “Only someone without friends or family to love them can think that way.”

“Francis, if you truly love your neighbors, you’re going to be in for a bit of a… disappointment. You see, the cartel is not going to like what your people did to their friends. They will soon return to your village in force and utterly destroy everyone, all the way down to the last kitten what mewls in your burning homes.”

“Oh no!” Francis wails. “You’re right. They’re going to kill everyone!”

“Yes but understand that your people won’t have to work for the cartel anymore so… you’re welcome.”

“What?!”

“Well, that was your wish, wasn’t it? You specifically told me, ‘I wish no one in my village has to work for the cartel,’ and now they don’t have to. Wish granted!”

Jueputa! This is not what I meant!”

“Look, you ungrateful meat-bag! If you didn’t intend for me to have your entire village wiped out by a ruthless drug gang, you should have told me so. I’m not a mind reader, for crying out loud!”

Pendejo!” seethes Francis. “I refuse to continue unless you promise me you won’t screw up my next two wishes!”

You let out a tired sigh, but say, “I promise I will not screw up your next two wishes.”

“Are you lying to me?”

“No, my friend. The Wishbringer always keeps his word. I will not screw up your next two wishes.”

“Thank you. And now that you can’t screw it up, I wish you to stop the cartel that enslaved my people before they can attack my village!

“Very well, young Francis. A rival cartel will ambush the cartel that enslaved you in a fight over control of that temple and its secrets. They can have it; I was the only thing in that place worth their trouble. Those who captured you will win this battle but be greatly weakened.”

“Thank God!”

“After which they will proceed to attack your village.”

“What?” Francis screams in a high-pitched shriek.

“Fear not, my mortal pet!” you declare with a soothing tone. “You have the weapons from the men your people are hanging. Set up a proper ambush outside your village, and your enemies will be so weakened by their former battle that you should easily destroy them!”

“But we shouldn’t have to worry about any of that. You promised you would not screw up any more of my wishes. You promised!”

“’Screw up’ implies an accident. I assure you young mortal, my twisting the words of your wishes is not in any way accidental. I have ‘screwed up’ nothing!”

Go to Roman Numeral VI.

VI.

“Look, can you turn into a person?” Francis asks. “I don’t like speaking to a frog.”

“Very well,” you reply. “Humanity it is.”

If you become a human male, go to Roman Numeral IX.

If you become a human female, go Roman Numeral VII.

VII.

You turn yourself from frog to human female.

In addition to your little, low-cut dress, you wear two articles of clothing some might find odd for the tropical clime. One is a long, flowing white scarf around your neck with a tail that reaches almost all the way down to the ground. The other is a pair of tight, black leather gloves. No smudge or wrinkle appears on your clothes, on your beautiful white scarf or flawless skin, even though you are in the middle of a wild, untamed jungle.

“Lilah!” the boy gasps, eyes full of rapture.

“Yes, yes,” you sigh, as if supremely bored. As you speak, you tug down hard on one glove, pulling it tight on your hand, and then you do the same to the other.

“Delilah Adamson,” you continue, “daughter of Baptist Missionaries from distant America. The dream of every man in your village if not the world. Here I am… different, exotic. Way out of your league. Of course, I am dressed a bit less… conservatively than young Miss Adamson, yes?”

“You got that right. Her parents would not let her out of the house in that!”

“Indeed.”

“Lilah!” Francis gushes. “I mean Senora Wishbringer. Would… do you want to go out with me? Like on a date? Please?”

“Um… what?”

“There’s a town about an 8 mile walk from our village,” the boy explains. “They’ve got a real movie theater. Would you like to go watch a movie with me?”

“Mr. and Mrs. Adamson left the village with a laptop, a projector, and a one terabyte hard drive filled with literally thousands of movies and TV episodes. And you want me to walk eight miles of jungle trails to a movie theater?!”

“I know Lilah but… the laptop… it’s just not the same. I want to take a beautiful girl out to a real movie. Besides, the stuff in your parents’ drive is all edited so nothing offends the missionaries. I want to watch a movie the way it was meant to be seen for a change.”

"Alright Francis, I'll go out with you (Go to Roman Numeral VIII)."

Sorry, Francis but this is a professional relationship. So get serious and tell me exactly what you wish for (Go to Roman Numeral X)?

VIII.

You agree to go on a date with Francis, walking 8 miles with him to the town with the movie theater. The date goes very well. How well?

The average human in these times lives 80 years. You, Tobar Mhiann, have lived thousands. So why not conduct a 62-year experiment? The experiment is called “marriage”.

You dated Francisco José de Goya y Lucientes until he was 18 years old, then married the young man and bore him 8 beautiful children.

Throughout the marriage, you used your immense powers to keep the family comfortable, but not so comfortable that you would stand out too much. And you were very generous to the community, keeping resentment to a minimum. You easily installed Francis as Mayor, and your village grew into a prosperous yet quiet resort town. Your township always had good luck when it came to weather and tourism. Best of all, the criminals, including cartel sicarios and corrupt government officials learned to leave your town the hell alone.

While you planned for at least 62 years of wedded bliss, it was not to be. Twenty-one years into the marriage, you discovered that Francis had a mistress, and they both died tragically in a car accident. Your adulterating husband, hopelessly paralyzed beside a small stream, survived 48 sleepless, agonizing hours all alone in the jungle before a nearby ant colony finally claimed him. Given a choice, he might have preferred to die instantly in the crash like his girlfriend, but hey… you’re not a mind reader.

AN END

Return to the Beginning?

IX.

You become a tall, handsome young man in a fine white tuxedo. Black dress shoes gleam like mirrors on your feet.

You wear two articles of clothing some might find odd for the tropical clime. One is a long, flowing white scarf around your neck with a tail that reaches almost all the way down to the ground. The other is a pair of tight, black leather gloves. No smudge or wrinkle appears on your alabaster suit, or on your snow-white scarf, even though you are in the middle of a wild, untamed jungle.

“Wow!” Francis gasps, his eyes full of wonder.

“Yes, yes,” you sigh, as if supremely bored. As you speak, you tug down hard on one glove, pulling it tight on your hand, and then you do the same to the other.

“Impressive, I know,” you continue. “Now young human, let us get down to business, shall we?”

Go to Roman Numeral X.

X.

“What is it you desire Francis? Wealth? Fame? Power?”

“Well… there’s this girl I like…”

“Of course, there is,” you sigh bitterly, “You mortals are so tedious. You all want your crush to love you, yes? Well tell me human; who would you like me to enslave for your amusement?”

“Delilah Adamson… but I don’t want you to enslave her.”

“A yes, Delilah Adamson, daughter of American missionaries sent to your village. Gorgeous. Exotic. Wealthy, at least by Guatemalan standards. You want me to make Delilah fall in love with you, right Francis?”

Francis steps back, a look of horror on his face.

“Of course not!” he cries, “I don’t want Lilah to like me just because you’re controlling her mind. Why would I rape her like that?”

“Oh,” you say, suddenly perplexed. “So… why did you tell me you liked her?”

“Lilah and her family stood up to the cartel,” Francis explains. “So of course, those culeros threatened to kill them. That’s why the Adamsons fled our village.”

“So… what do you want from me?”

“Cartel assassins can hunt down and kill the Adamsons even if they go home. My wish is that Delilah and her family return to America, safe from the cartel.”

You can take Delilah and her family to the top of Mount Rainer. Mount Rainer is in the US state of Washington, so you will be taking them to America, just like Francis wished. Also, Francis wished them to be safe from the cartel, but mentioned nothing about safety from thin mountaintop atmosphere or subfreezing temperatures.

Take Delilah and her family to the top of Mount Rainer (Go to Roman Numeral XI.)

Make sure Delilah and her family make it to their home in America, safe from the cartel (Go to Roman Numeral XII.)

XI.

You have elected to deposit Delilah’s family on the peak of Mount Rainer.

You soon learn that a rescue helicopter had already been sent to the summit of the volcano to save some climbers in distress. They were just in time to spot the Adamson family and whisk them and the climbers all off to safety.

Either this was an incredibly lucky coincidence, or some other Power is at work here, and deliberately thwarted you.

You now sense some sort of Divine protection over Francis de Goya and no longer wish to fool with him. It is time to find some other mortal to play with.

THE END

XII.

Somehow, you’ve decided to grant Francis’ wish as he intended. Delilah and her family make it safely to their home in America, and every member of the cartel hunting them dies in various incidents. These same incidents also save Francis’ village. But you have questions.

“I don’t get it,” you snap. “Save a girl you like? How was that a wish for you?”

“It wasn’t,” Francis replies. “It was a wish for Lilah, and her parents of course – they have been very good to my people.”

“But how are you getting to America? You’re an illiterate peasant with no money in the middle of nowhere, Guatemala. The girl you love might as well be on the far side of the moon. You will never see her again!”

“Maybe so. But I love Delilah Adamson and want her to be happy, even if that means I never get to be a part of her life again.”

“What pathetic weakness!” you snarl, pulling your gloves down tight in turn. “Did those missionaries teach you such asinine nonsense?”

“As a matter of fact, they did!” Francis crows. “And now that Delilah is safe, I’m done with you, you monster. Go away!”

You now sense some sort of Divine protection over Francis de Goya and no longer wish to fool with him. But there are other mortals to play with. And perhaps later, life’s difficulties will persuade even Francis to forget the Source of his protection. Then again, you’re not a mind reader, for crying out loud.

THE END

monster

About the author

Timothy James Turnipseed

Timothy was raised on a farm in rural Mississippi. His experiences have since taken him all around the world. He now teaches at local university, where he urges his Students to Run the Race, Keep the faith, and Endure to the End

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