Original fiction by Dr. Lindsey Scholl, Logic School Academic Director
Links to previous installments:
Part 1: We meet Thrill the goblin. He is fascinated by the Declaration of Goblin Rights, which stands as a monument to goblin pride, though no one can read all the words carved into the high, dark cavern wall.
Part 2: Thrill admits to his co-worker, Sistig, that he reads books only reserved for the librarians. Before Sistig can work the situation to his advantage, the goblins are called out to attack some wealthy humans travelling through the woods.
Part 3: Thrill is caught in a very un-goblinlike activity by Sistig. He has been watching ducks on a pond while his fellow goblins are having a riotously successful time attacking humans. The incident convinces Thrill that he must leave the inside of the mountain, which means getting himself exiled.
Part 4: In an attempt to get himself exiled, Thrill offers to alphabetize the books in the goblin library. His activity creates quite a stir.
Part 5: Thrill finally finds himself on the outside, but Sistig is exiled, as well. His griping threatens to undo all of Thrill’s well-laid plans.
Looking like a two grain sacks thrown over the horses’ backs, Thrill and Sistig were taken down the road a little ways, then deposited inside a small building. Thrill was grateful to be off of a horse and even more grateful to be out of the sun. Beside him rested his suitcase. Through the cloth still over his head, he could hear Sistig muttering. Considering what could have happened, things were going nicely.
After waiting a polite moment, he spoke. “Excuse me, sirs. May we take off these cloths?”
He could hear someone moving around the room, banging things closed. He was just about to ask his question a second time when Fitz’s voice responded.
“All right. Take them off. No one can see you now.”
Thrill maneuvered out of his covering and blinked against the dim light. They were in a medium-sized room, with a big fire pit at one end, a raised loft with beds at another, and a dining table and some storage pots in-between. This was where humans lived? He and Sistig had been placed next to the cold fire pit. The only other person in the room was Fitz.
“Guy went to give back the horses,” he explained. Now that he was not atop a horse, he looked younger than a full-grown adult human. Like one who had not quite reached manhood. The goblin part of Thrill was disgusted. To allow himself to be treated in such a manner by an over-grown boy was insulting to his pride.
To his own credit, Fitz looked a little sheepish. “They are not actually our horses. They belong to our uncles. He lets us borrow them for hunting. Today we would have snagged a deer, I’m sure of it. Except that we saw you two.” His conclusion turned into an accusation.
It was Sistig’s turn to speak up. “You could have left us in peace! We weren’t doing anything wrong.”
“Perhaps we should have! Who knows what Mom and Dad are going to think of you. They won’t take kindly to goblins in their house, that’s certain.”
Two sharp taps on the door interrupted him. He opened it to Guy, who, Thrill was pleased to see, was slightly older than his brother.
“What do you intend to do with us?” Sistig snapped again.
Fitz opened his mouth to answer when there was another knock on the door, followed by a high-pitched voice. “Guy! Fitz! Are you back so soon? Guy, let me in! I was right behind you and you slammed the door in my face.”
Guy obligingly opened the door to a female human, younger than Fitz and highly indignant.
“That was fairly rude to shut the door like that! And why are you back so early? Did you already kill something?”
Guy’s answer was to look towards the goblins.
“Oh! Goblins! You hunted goblins? They are so small. Why did you bring goblins home?”
Thrill had already concluded that he had not fallen in with the most intelligent of the humans, so he decided to take charge. “Hello, ma’am. My name is Thrill, son of Werva. This is my colleague, Sistig, son of Thrak. We are travelers passing through, and these boys were kind enough to give us a ride to town.”
“Hello,” the girl returned politely. “My name is Heloise. These are my brothers, Guy and Fitz, as I’m sure you know. We are all pleased to meet you, Thrill and Sistig. What brings you to town?”
Guy and Fitz were looking at their sister as if she had gone insane. “Heloise, when Mom and Dad get back. . .” Fitz began.
“That won’t happen until tomorrow.”
“Thank you for asking, ma’am,” Thrill continued. “We are actually in search of some other goblins. We were hoping to find some in these parts.”
“But you are the goblins in these parts,” Fitz replied. “There are no other goblins other than those who live under the mountain.”
Thrill knew that was what they would say. Of course there were no other goblins living secretly in the woods. He should know that. Still, it was a hard thing to hear. “You are sure? I have reason to believe that some of our kinfolk once journeyed outside of the mountain some time ago. You have seen no trace of them?”
While the three humans shook their heads, Sistig finally began to understand what was going on. “Wait a minute. You want to be out here? You wanted to be exiled? You meant to get me exiled?”
“No, I never wanted you to come with me.”
“Well I’m here now!” Sistig roared. “Stuck out here with a human-loving goblin!”
“I didn’t mean it quite like that.”
“I don’t care what you meant! I will not be trapped here with these disgusting creatures, knowing that you want to be here. You can’t keep me out here any longer, Thrill. You can stay here by yourself and read and talk and love humans all you want. I’m going home!”
With that, he charged one of the closed windows, yanked it open, and jumped through. Thrill scrambled after him, but only went as far as the shutters. From behind their protection, he saw Sistig race down the street, scaring whomever lay in his path and seeming to enjoy it. Then he rounded a corner and was gone.
“Should we go after him?” one of the siblings asked.
“I don’t think so.” But Thrill’s response was calmer than he felt. He knew Sistig would be mad, but not that mad. Deep down inside, he felt a pang of responsibility. Perhaps they would let Sistig back in once he explained the situation to them. Then he felt a pang of panic. Once the GSC knew what Thrill had done and why he had done it, they would never let him come home. They might even come after him.
On the outside, his composure was still intact. “He will not bother anybody. He’ll head straight for the mountain and hang out there until they let him in.”
The humans looked as if they did not believe him, but Thrill had no time to waste. Clapping his hands officiously, he pointed to a short cloak in the corner. “I would love to see more of this town of yours. If I cover myself up, will you show me around?”
But it turned out that Thrill did not have to cover himself after all. Guy and Fitz had been overly cautious in hiding him away, since there were, in fact, goblins who came through town occasionally. Thrill was delighted with this discovery, although he suspected it would not help him a great deal in his ultimate search to find the Declaration. These goblins travelers were actually goblin armies journeying from one distant mountain on their way to destroying another goblin army at a different distant mountain. They were not the sort who would carry around high-minded documents like “The Declaration of Goblin Rights.”
To be continued in Part 8, in which Thrill learns about “Dad” and has many disappointing conversations.