Category Archives: Defenders of the Wall

Stories about the people who defend the city wall and keep everyone safe from the monsters outside.

Short Story: Not a Normal Day

Genre: slice of life, fantasy
Features the team from Mission Gone Wrong.

 

On normal days, Theo arrived to work on time, if not slightly early.

This was not a normal day.

First, he accidentally destroyed his alarm clock instead of just snoozing it. Because of that, he missed his ride and had to dash madly to work.

Then, on the way to work, a building cracked and a part of the roof slid to the footpath. His training kicked in and he twisted around to catch the falling rubble before they injured someone. With the same strength that destroyed his alarm clock, he moved the pieces aside to clear the road.

By then, he was really late, and when he finally reached his squad’s training room, it was to the sight of the rest of the team standing outside. Of all the days to be late, it had to be the day latecomers were actually punished.

“How long do we need to stay outside for?” he asked his seniors.

“We can go in any time. We just don’t want to,” Thomas said.

“Vice-Captain’s having a conniption,” Eileen said.

“Say it as it is. He’s throwing a hissy fit. Captain has to deal with it because he’s the captain but the rest of us are staying out here where it’s safe,” Thomas said.

“What happened?” Theo asked.

“Someone ate his snack stash,” Eileen said.

Theo immediately looked at Thomas. Thomas groaned.

“You too? I didn’t eat Vice-Captain’s food.”

“Then who did?”

“If we knew, we wouldn’t be here,” Thomas grumbled, “Better get comfortable. Vice-Captain doesn’t sound like he’s going to stop for a long time.”

After all that rushing, it didn’t seem fair that this was the day that he hadn’t needed to rush after all, but, well, such was life. He placed his things on the floor where the others had left their belongings and settled in for the wait.

~End~

Advertisements

Short Story: A Change of Pace

Genre: fantasy
Follows after A Pioneer’s Life and A Friend in Need.

 

The land of beyond the wall was the land of monsters, they were brought up to believe. It wasn’t wrong. Monsters did prowl the wasteland outside. What they didn’t teach in school was that there were other cities out there, all fighting against the monsters in their own way.

While he recuperated in the girl’s guestroom, she shared about her own city. Instead of concentrating all their attention on one big city, they expended by planting new, smaller cities nearby, each with their own defence force. The people were different too. Back in his home, only a few had super strength of powers. Here, everyone had their own special power, and were played their part to defend their city.

She also talked about underground cities, of cities built aboveground out of reach, of cities that travelled the wasteland as nomads. Some had special tools that were like poison to the monsters, some had their own tamed monsters that could fight against the wild monsters, all had some unique way to protect themselves.

“Does anyone else know about this?” he asked.

“The nomads would know. They go everywhere,” she said, “We’re actually really, really far from each other. I only know because my power is to travel very far very quickly. I’ll show you around when you get better.”

For a long time, he had been anchored to his house and the immediate area around him. He wouldn’t mind a change of pace.

“That sounds great.”

~End~

Short Story: Team Bonding

Genre: slice of life
Inspired by the prompt camaraderie.
DD – Department of Defense

 

They were kneeling in the hallway, in front of a growing crowd, getting lectured by the DD head like naughty children, because their captain wanted a team bonding experience.

“A team who gets in trouble together stays together,” Lucy said, completely unrepentant.

The DD head, a good decade younger than their captain, pinched the bridge of his nose like a weary parent.

“That’s not an excuse to almost burn down the building,” he said.

“To be fair, we thought the foam was just soap bubbles,” Lucy said.

“The label said ‘Caution. Flammable.”

“Oops?” Lucy said with a sheepish shrug.

“As your next team building experience, you will clear all the mess you made. You have two days to clean everything up. Until then, no chilli for you, Lucy,” the DD head said.

“But chilli is life!”

“Then you better get clearing.”

Lucy jumped to her feet. “Come on team. Let’s go go go!”

~End~

Short Story: A Pioneer’s Life

Genre: fantasy
Features a character from Have You Ever Wondered and This Girl.

 

The land of beyond the wall was the land of monsters, they were brought up to believe. It wasn’t wrong. Monsters did prowl the wasteland outside. What they didn’t teach in school was that the wasteland was also unclaimed land just waiting to be taken.

That was his job as a pioneer.

Pioneers lived out in the wasteland, usually in groups, but there were also oddballs like him who stayed alone.

A pioneer had only two jobs: stay alive and expand their territory. The idea was to make the wasteland safer before sending teams out to build the new city walls, and the city was very willing to make the wasteland safer.

It did get lonely out there, and living constantly on lookout wasn’t the easiest way to live, but the money was good, and he wasn’t completely cut off from human interaction. He touched base with his manager daily, people visited him with supplies fortnightly, and when DD sent teams out on missions they often dropped by as well.

So even if he was hurt now, even as his body started to burn to fight off the infection, someone would come. He had already missed the daily check in. He just needed to survive until help arrive.

This was what all the traps he set was for.

~Continue the story in A Friend in Need~

Short Story: Ambition’s Origin

Genre: fantasy, family
Takes place in the Defenders of the Wall world.
Note: DD is short for Department of Defense

 

When Lavi was eight, he was the class monitor, an older brother, and his house was haunted.

His parents didn’t notice because they were busy with the baby, his sister didn’t notice because she was just a baby, but he did because he was the class monitor and as class monitor he was supposed to notice things.

It started small. A toy on the floor, a fruit rolling off the table, strange smoke in strange places. Then whole couches moved, the crib floated, and a ghost appeared! By then, even their grandparents knew they something weird was going on.

Finally, the mystery was solved. The source of their haunting turned out to be none other than his baby sister.

How lucky. If Liam had powers, he could do anything!

Except… his baby sister only had her powers when she was asleep. Awake, she was just a normal girl. Not that it changed anything. As the older brother, he would have taken care of her anyway, with powers or not.

When his baby sister turned seven, she decided she wanted to be a defender. Liam, who was 15 going on 16, knew what he needed to do.

“What do you want to do after you finish school, Liam?”

“Become the head of DD.”

~End~

 

Short Story: This Girl

Genre: fantasy, mystery
Related to Have You Ever Wondered.

 

Almost every day for the past three years, this girl appeared out of nowhere to visit him before she disappeared as abruptly as she arrived.

At first, he was alarmed. He stayed alone in a monster-filled wasteland. If a little girl could just waltz through his defences like they didn’t exist, so could they.

Then he figured out that he didn’t actually have a security breach. This girl was just too good at going wherever she wanted.

By then, this girl had grown comfortable with him, to the point that she regularly invited herself into his home to talk enough for both of them. Now his concern turned from his defences to this confusing girl’s safety.

Using his solitude-honed patience, he watched and waited for two years before he discovered her secret.

She literally appeared and disappeared into the air.

The discovery lifted a weight he hadn’t realised he had been carrying with him. Not that it changed his relationship with this chatty girl. He stayed in the wilderness to get away from people. He wouldn’t waste his energy trying to chase her out, and he wouldn’t waste it trying to keep up with her energy.

“Have you ever wondered why salt tastes salty?”

“No.”

~End~

Short Story: Just a Game

Genre: fantasy

 

The training session disguised as ‘just a game’ had three sides. Red, blue, and white. The goal for every team was to finish the game with the most members.

The game began with everyone on the white team except for one red and one blue starting member. The red and blue teams increased their numbers by touching the white members’ tags and ‘infecting‘ them into their team. The white team protected their numbers by touching the red and blue members’ tags, which turned them black and eliminated them from the game.

At first glance, the white team had the advantage because they completely outnumbered the other teams. That was a trap to lull them into a false sense of security. In reality, the starting red and blue members were often elite hunters, and the white team their unsuspecting prey.

“Begin!”

In a flash, both starting members pounced and infected two members each into their team. The white members nearby fled in terror.

‘Just a game’. Lies! More like merciless hunting ground. Would he be the hunter or the hunted?

He braced himself.

Time to go hunting.

~End~

Short Story: From Magic to Monsters

Genre: fantasy

 

When Ezra was younger, he helped his aunt with her magic tricks. Under her tutelage, he learnt the techniques of sleight of hand, the power of decoys, the advantage of technology, the skills of showmanship, and the readiness to grab even the slightest opportunity.

When they discovered his ability to create doubles of himself, that was just the icing on the cake. It opened up more possibilities, and Ezra was certain he would follow his aunt’s footsteps into the world of magic.

Then a colony of monsters attacked the city. The wall crumbled under the onslaught and the monsters spilled in.

Shadow appeared not long after to single-handedly beat the monsters back. But there were still a few who slipped past and they pounced at the people nearby.

He saw an opportunity.

Safely tucked away, he created doubles as decoys. The doubles threw themselves at the monsters and bought time until Shadow picked the monsters up and tossed them out of the city.

One week later, he received an invitation to join the Department of Defense.

He took it.

~End~

 

The monster event mentioned can also be found in It Started as a Little Bud.

Short Story: Why You?

Genre: slice of life, fantasy
Features characters from Mission Gone Wrong. A more complete list of the team can be found near the bottom of the fiction navigation page.
Note: The ‘S’ in S Class Fighter refers to superhuman strength.

 

The thought hit Theo as he stared at the ceiling after getting knocked on his back for the third time in less than an hour.

Why was Ezra his mentor?

“Why do you ask?” Ezra asked above him.

Theo shot up with an embarrassing “Eep!” which of course drew the attention of everyone else in the room.

“Ask what?” Thomas asked. The rest circled closer like vultures.

“Why I’m his mentor,” Ezra said.

“I mean, I’m an S Class Fighter. Wouldn’t I normally get another S Class Fighter as my mentor?” Theo quickly explained before things spiralled out of control.

His seniors exchanged glances.

“You’re his mentor. You can do the honours,” Thomas said to Ezra.

“Well.” Ezra cleared his throat. “I was not given a reason when they assigned you as my mentee, but I believe I was chosen because you don’t need more help to improve your strength. I’m here to help you use it well.”

As expected of Ezra. He knew everything.

“Or,” Thomas said, “They just picked a random person and that person was Ezra.”

Theo’s shoulders slumped. The rest of the team glared at an unrepentantly cheerful Thomas.

“What’s the matter?” Eileen asked.

“Huh? Oh. Nothing. Just a random thought. I didn’t even realise I said it out loud.” Theo rubbed his neck with a nervous laugh.

“You know.” Thomas dropped an arm over Theo’s shoulders. “If you want a new mentor, you just need to ask.”

“Wha… but… Ezra’s perfect.”

The team burst into laughter. Theo’s words caught up to his brain a little too late and he dropped his face into his hands.

“Hear that Ezra? You’re perfect,” Thomas said.

“We’ll see how perfect he thinks I am after I’m done with him. Come on,” Ezra said.

Theo scrambled to his feet.

In the end, Theo decided that it didn’t matter why Ezra was his mentor, only that he was, and Theo would learn everything he could while he still had his amazing mentor.

~End~

Short Story: Mascot Duty

Genre: fantasy
Features characters from Mission Gone Wrong.
DD – Department of Defense

 

Theo pulled off the head of his costume with the gasp of a drowning man finding air.

After the last time Eileen pulled him out for a decoy date, Theo thought he would know better next time.

It was ‘next time’ now, and he was still caught off guard when his team stuffed him in a fluffy costume and threw him into a mascot job. He joined DD to fight monsters, not play undercover agent!

“Alright there, Theo?” asked Steven, his fellow mascot.

“Yeah. Just need to breathe.”

“I know what you mean,” Steven said with a commiserating chuckle.

None of his seniors had told him anything but to pretend to be normal and treat it like a real job. Was Steven one of their suspects? A target? Completely unrelated? It was hard to tell without more information.

So he did what they said, hid his strength, and focused on his job. He entertained the children as the mascot, pointed visitors to the right locations, and took care of lost children. There were always lost children. Sometimes, they found him, sometimes, he was asked to find them.

It was when he was looking for a girl who had wandered away from her school group that he walked right into trouble.

“Go away!” Steven said with his fluffy mascot arms around the missing girl, who was starting to realise the mascot she had trusted might not be as trustworthy as she thought.

Theo held his hands up in outward surrender. He didn’t want to let the girl out of his sight, but despite the special training he still didn’t feel comfortable fighting with normal humans. What should he do?

Ezra appeared behind Steven without a sound, and Theo’s dilemma was solved.

“I’m going away,” Theo said to keep Steven’s attention on him, “Just give me some time. It’s not easy walking backwards in this-”

One of his legs got caught behind the other and Theo fell with a yelp onto his back. By the time he pushed himself back up, one Ezra was fighting Steven while a second Ezra led the girl away. The first Ezra twisted Steven’s arm behind him and kicked him off his feet. Once down, the fluffy mascot suit became Steven’s prison until the rest of Theo’s team arrived.

Only after Steven was taken into custody and they returned to their training room did his seniors tell him their mission.

Find the one behind the recent kidnappings.

“We’re Fighters, not the police. Why are we doing this?” Theo asked.

“Apparently, you have a hidden talent in baiting out people they’re looking for. So expect more missions like this in the future,” Thomas said.

“But…”

“Theo,” Alan cut in with an envelop, “Here’s your pay for your mascot work and a letter of recommendation. If you ever decide to change your career, they’ll be happy to have you back. Well done.”

“Thank you, Captain.” He got paid to play around?

“Back to what you were saying. But?” Thomas prompted with a glint in his eyes.

“If the police needs our help then we should help them.”

Thomas laughed.

~End~

Word of the Day Challenge

Alternative haven for the Daily Post's mourners!

Isabel Caves

Poetry, Fiction & Photography

Shawn Writes Stuff

Not necessarily well, but here we are.

Little Wee Stories

Very short stories to delight and entertain

CANVAS & QUILL

Faristha Kanakkapillai