99 comments

Fantasy Funny

Look, I had pica, ok? Oh sure, Aesop tried to disguise his retelling and pretend it was just some "random" fable he "suddenly" invented, but everyone knew who and what he was really talking about. Thanks to him, I've never heard the end of it at our volcanic-barbecues-slash-virgin-roasts.


I'm Larry. That's right, Larry the FireLizard, go on and get it out of your system. My folks weren't very creative when it came to naming their whelps. To be fair, there were about 200 of us, and pretty soon you kinda run out of the interesting stuff. At least I wasn't a girl – I was going to be Lizzy the FireLizard. Anywho...


It all started when I had finally reached my 250th birthday, the proper age for a young dragon to leave his thunder and begin his lifelong hobby of treasure-seeking. 


Only, for me, it wasn’t just a hobby. It went deeper than that, man: it was a calling. I loved gold. The way it sparkled and shone, the way the melted stuff poured, the way it shimmered as it flowed through my claws. It was mesmerizing. I wanted to bathe in it, marry it, become One with it. 


Yeah, that all sounds wrong now, but I guess you’d have to have been there. And been dragonkin.


Now, that’s not to say I wasn’t an aberration amongst my kin. But, see, we didn’t have all these sissy therapies back then like you have now. Can you imagine? “Tell me about your mother.” “She ate a kingdom. No, not a king, the entire kingdom. Don’t believe me? Do you remember Schlendia? Nope? See, wiped it clean off the map.”


(Don’t even get me started on how that "makes me feel”... “You look pretty tasty,” is how it "makes me feel.")


Anyway, so that birthday, I was super excited to get started. I began with the little stuff, roasting a wealthy traveler here and there, maybe an occasional bordello flambello. I particularly loved gambling runs: the gold always smelled filthy, but it came with a side of beer if I was careful not to cook it off in the initial volley. 


There was a lotta competition, mind you. The countryside skies were so thick with me and my kind, you could hardly see daylight. I started going further and further afield, just looking for that delicious hit of mellow yellow.


Flying over the sea one day, I chanced upon something novel: floating buffets. I later learned they were actually called “ships,” and they were built by the Phoenician people whom I had menaced regularly. I guess I never thought to check, before then, if they were fleeing me by water. They were extremely tasty, so I feel kinda stupid that it took me so long and had to happen purely by chance.


Soon as I got hip to that floating action, I didn’t rest on my laurels: it turned out they had no way to warn each other when I raided them at sea, so all I had to do was camp out at a spot on their route – a little tucked-away island with the most delightful cave – for a few months, and before I knew it, hey presto! My cave was full to the brim.


I know what you’re gonna say, but do you know why the history books think the Phoenicians were only trading in tin? Me. I made sure and stripped those suckers of every bit of the good stuff and kept going back for more.


(...Excuse my wings, they do that little flippity flip flip thing when they're happy.)


Now, I’m a collector, yes, but more than that, you have to take some time and smell the roses, know what I mean? By the time I finally stopped savaging Phoenician ships, I was ready for a nap. I buried myself up to my neck in my golden lair and fell into a deep, soul-satisfying sleep that lasted until a new era had dawned. 


By that time, the planet had grown more crowded, and my kind had been chased away from the populated routes by weapons the likes of which I had never seen. I couldn’t find much to raid that was safe, so I ended up mostly killing time on my island. 


It started off harmlessly enough: I loved gold, and I was bored. It smelled good, looked good… you can see how it might happen, right?


I tasted some. Don’t judge – have you ever tried it? I know you have: you people have gold-flake-topped cakes and liqueurs imbued with the stuff. Delicious, right?! Awww yeah: guilt-free gilt!


Look, I’m a beast, I have huge appetites. What happened next was the natural progression of things: I ate it. All. Thing is, it was kinda like Chinese food... I was hungry again 2 years later. 


That stuff doesn’t digest well, apparently. When I was forced from my lair in order to find more of anything to eat – which, oh, musta been around 600 BC, in retrospect – I happened to be over Greece when my first “accident” occurred.


(Hey, that guy in the back: show him the door if he’s going to be juvenile about this.) 


Anyway, upshot is, I accidentally buried a small town in golden deuce. I don’t recall the town's name, being as I was too mortified to stick around. Obviously, reclaiming was out of the question: I have pica, not scatophilia.


Well, what can I say after that? Once the dam breaks, it’s on, and it’d been a couple centuries in the making. Pretty soon, much of the Greek and Roman countrysides were buried in my piles of filthy lucre, and I was helpless to do anything about it. (I understand those “hoards” are still being found to this day. You’re welcome.)


Turns out, stories started going around everywhere about some “goose” who “laid golden eggs,” but unless all those villagers had sh… bad eyesight, I knew they were punchin’ down on me. 


I was at one of my kin’s get-togethers not long after that, and it happened by accident. Once. ‘Course, they put two and two together, and … well, there you have it. 


“Larry Loosie Goosie,” “Goldie the DungLizard,” “Izzy” (Izzy or Izn’ty Gonna Crap Gold on the Populace) – I’ve heard it all. My reputation was in the toilet, both among my kin and among the countryside. I could hear the laughter coming for miles. 


Naturally this Aesop dude heard the "goose" tales, too, and – being appropriately terrified of naming and shaming me, specifically – decided to make it one for the history books and wrote it down for all time.


So, people, all I’m saying is: please stop telling your kids that stupid goose fable, ok? You’re gaffelighting my serious mental and physical issues, and you should be ashamed of yourselves.

February 13, 2023 01:35

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99 comments

Dylan Patrick
22:43 Feb 20, 2023

Your humor shines through as always! Larry's interiority made it feel shorter than it actually was, and I like how he reacts to embarrassing moments that both were and weren't his fault. Also worth note: I'm a sucker for wordplay, so I appreciate the guilt-free gilt line. Anyone who finds ways to twist their language in interesting ways is cool in my book!

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Wendy Kaminski
22:49 Feb 20, 2023

hehe Thanks, Dylan! :)

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Amanda Lieser
17:25 Feb 20, 2023

Hey Wendy! What a clever take on the prompt. I loved this dragon and would absolutely get a cup of coffee with him. This piece was full of fun, punchy lines-about the names, about trusting people, and that final sentence! It was all great. I loved the way this character spoke to me because it just drove the beauty of that title home. Nice work!

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Wendy Kaminski
17:35 Feb 20, 2023

That is so flattering, thank you, Amanda! I am tickled that you enjoyed it! :)

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Graham Kinross
11:12 Feb 20, 2023

“guilt-free gilt,” excellent word play. gaffelighting? The dragon has a point about gold flecked food. I never got that. It looks pretty but I wouldn’t want to eat or drink it, same goes for those glittering ball bearings people think look cute on cupcakes. I thought the Chinese takeaway reference was about fibre content.

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Wendy Kaminski
15:32 Feb 20, 2023

"The dragon has a point about gold flecked food. I never got that. It looks pretty but I wouldn’t want to eat or drink it, same goes for those glittering ball bearings people think look cute on cupcakes." You clearly just don't GET gold, hmpft! ;) Gaffelighting was a new word, but I felt like it fit: highlighting one's mistakes to keep them feeling badly about themselves.

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Graham Kinross
21:42 Feb 20, 2023

Gaffelighting, a word for the ages. I don’t get gold, no. It’s too soft. Platinum perhaps, crunchy. A dragon mighty enough to eat a country sounds more like it. That’s an epic achievement. Sounds less than delicious though, clearly dragons have acquired tastes.

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Benjamin Gibbs
02:38 Feb 20, 2023

I learn new words every time I read one of your stories. (I'm poorly educated. Lol) It's nice getting to walk away not only laughing my ass off, but with a new vocabulary list with words like "bordello" and "laurels" and "gaffelighting". I think you're the best I've seen so far around here at the opening remark. "Look, I had pica, ok?" Lol Especially with the prompt in mind, I'm obviously going to be reading the rest of that story. Some of my favorite lines: "Thing is, it was kinda like Chinese food... I was hungry again 2 years later." (...

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Wendy Kaminski
02:40 Feb 20, 2023

Thank you so much, Benjamin! I am going to bookmark this review for when I’m having a bad day because I loved it! :) Really appreciate you taking the time to read and leave such a lovely comment!

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Dan Coglianese
00:54 Feb 20, 2023

This was marvelous! Not just the story itself, but the words you used, and how you used them! So many wonderful lines to choose from. "...looking for that delicious hit of mellow yellow" Honestly, this is one of my favorites I've read so far in the two months I've been on Reedsy. I love this Larry the FireLizard. I could totally see him sitting there telling us this story. Amazing! I am seriously hoping there will be more stories with Larry in them. Great character.

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Wendy Kaminski
00:55 Feb 20, 2023

That is seriously so super flattering, thank you Dan! You totally made my day. :-) I did not make shortlist with this one but I sure had a lot of fun with it lol. I’m glad you appreciated the terrible terrible humor ha ha.

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Dan Coglianese
00:57 Feb 20, 2023

I am stunned this wasn't shortlisted.

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Wendy Kaminski
00:59 Feb 20, 2023

I will equally take sincerely wonderful comments like yours, honestly! :-)

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Rebecca Miles
21:26 Feb 19, 2023

This was a fire and brimstone blast full of your characteristic wit. You've got just such a great light jocular feel for how to string words to include the reader. Whatever your story, I feel always like you've pulled up a chair, poured me a huge drink and we've settled to laughing, very loudly, till the small hours. Stories should be like this, it feels so celebratory as the fun you had just roars off the page. Here's a perfect example: But, see, we didn’t have all these sissy therapies back then like you have now. Can you imagine? “Tell me...

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Wendy Kaminski
21:41 Feb 19, 2023

Thank you so much, Rebecca - your review absolutely made me smile, and I appreciate you taking the time to read and leave such a very lovely commentary! :) I'm so glad you enjoyed it! :D

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23:22 Mar 31, 2023

Hilarious. Read it twice to fully digest all this dragon did. How do you do it? So witty. So funny.

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Irene Duchess
03:31 Feb 27, 2023

that was awesome! it gave me a laugh... especially the 'floating buffets'. I've read Aesop's golden goose story... this was a funny twist. :D

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Wendy Kaminski
04:31 Feb 27, 2023

lol Thanks very much, Lilah! I appreciate the encouraging comment! :)

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Billy Keith
18:21 Feb 26, 2023

What a TWIST on a fable that was funny and golden in the telling of it !

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Wendy Kaminski
18:23 Feb 26, 2023

Billy! OMG :) Hey there, nice to see you here, and thank you so much for the encouraging review! :)

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3i Writer
09:55 Feb 24, 2023

I still can't believe this dragon ate his own gold.

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Wendy Kaminski
15:57 Feb 24, 2023

hehe :) Thanks for taking the time to read!

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David Drake
22:05 Feb 23, 2023

This was funny! I literally laughed out loud at his narrative. I like fantasy stories that aren't afraid to not take the stereotypes seriously. Thanks for sharing this!

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Wendy Kaminski
23:12 Feb 23, 2023

Glad you got a kick out of it, David - and thanks for the comment! :)

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Marty B
22:36 Feb 22, 2023

That took a left turn! I like the scatological description of the valued coprolite.

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Wendy Kaminski
00:09 Feb 23, 2023

hehe Thanks, Marty! :)

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Michelle Oliver
22:32 Feb 22, 2023

I’m still giggling. I admire someone who can do believable and sustained humour. So many great puns in this one. I could highlight one or two every paragraph. I love the dragon narrator’s voice. Great story!

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Wendy Kaminski
00:09 Feb 23, 2023

Thanks, Michelle! :)

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Kelly Sibley
22:19 Feb 21, 2023

Poor goose... I mean dragon.

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Wendy Kaminski
22:20 Feb 21, 2023

haha! :D

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Jeanne Kiesinger
21:10 Feb 21, 2023

Don’t even get me started on how that "makes me feel”... “You look pretty tasty,” is how it "makes me feel." I may have to steal this... but not for a fantasy character!

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Wendy Kaminski
21:56 Feb 21, 2023

lol Please feel free! :D

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Thom With An H
20:16 Feb 21, 2023

Wendy, I'm a sucker for a great title, and yours is top notch. Here's the thing though, as good as the title is, the story is even better. So fresh and original. More than anything so hilarious. Writing funny isn't easy, at least for the rest of us mortals. You on the other hand make it look so easy. And your following? Wow. There is a reason you get the most likes, you deserve them. Great job again. Really fantastic writing.

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Wendy Kaminski
22:03 Feb 21, 2023

Thank you Thom - high praise. :) I just got done reading your two, and if you will trade me a little of your dynamite sentimentality for a little of my funny, I will call this a done deal right this moment!! :)

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Thom With An H
23:33 Feb 21, 2023

I’m the Nicolas Sparks of Reedsy. Sentimental stories with mostly tragic ends. Funny is way harder. Especially consistently funny. I guess what I’m trying to say is, deal!

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L M
08:09 Feb 21, 2023

Great story.

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Wendy Kaminski
14:51 Feb 21, 2023

Appreciate you taking the time to read and review, as always, L M :).

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L M
10:56 Feb 26, 2023

Youre welcome.

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Steffen Lettau
04:51 Feb 19, 2023

This had me laughing! Just when you get through one pun, the next comes out of nowhere, and it works! "My reputation was in the toilet" - chef's kiss!

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Wendy Kaminski
17:51 Feb 19, 2023

lol Thanks, Steffan! :D

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Susan Catucci
01:37 Feb 19, 2023

This dragon prompt was my first choice - I LOVE dragons - but didn't have the voice you have/found. Special kudos to you, Sista, for both wit and wisdom. Hope you weaved some gold leaf paper sturdy enough to wipe the tail of your MC (must clean)! Covet yr words, as always. :)

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Wendy Kaminski
18:02 Feb 19, 2023

LOLL! :) Thanks, sis, your review is so heartwarming and I loved the giggle! :) <3

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Andrew Fruchtman
16:51 Feb 18, 2023

Loved the Voice in this story. Lots of fun! Good job.

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Wendy Kaminski
23:31 Feb 18, 2023

Thanks so much, Andrew! :)

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