Wood You Be Mine? Act 2, Part 2
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“We’re actually not that far,” Timothy replied, “start by heading north out of town and in to the woods. As luck would have it, it’s roughly three kilometers away. We can get there in no time!”
Needing to hear no more, Legno rapidly made his way through town and in to the heavily forested area, all the while having Timothy perched carefully upon his shoulder. Not one for the great outdoors, this was the first time Legno had traversed the region. It was the first time he heard the crunch of the dry grass beneath his feet, the first time he had been eclipsed by the lush green of the cherry bark oak trees, the first time the growling sounds of the animals filled his ears.
But as exciting as this all was to his senses, more exciting was the prospect of the new beginning that Timothy had promised. Unfortunately, despite his emotional enthusiasm, Legno’s diminutive frame wasn’t used to supporting this much physical exertion, and he was soon doubled over and wheezing.
*Huff* “Are…” *huff* “…you sure…” *huff* “…we’re going…” *huff* “…the right…” *huff* “…way?”
“Yes, yes. But take a minute to catch your breath. You’ll do neither of us any good by passing out in the woods,” Timothy answered.
“It’s just that we’ve been traveling for hours, and I feel like we haven’t gotten any closer,” Legno said, sounding more than a little discouraged.
“It’s been fourteen seconds, Legno,” Timothy responded. “Look,” he said, pointing with his cane, “you can still clearly see everyone in town.”
“That can’t be ri…” Legno began as he glanced over his shoulder, only to see the townspeople going about their day, their voices still audible:
“What do you mean you’re out of eggs!”
“I swear to GOD I’m not afraid to slap you in public!”
“The minstrels were hot, but they were way too old. I wonder if they have a younger brother…”
“And then he said he wanted to see if I ‘lived up to my name,’ the creep.”
“Huh, well, I’ll be dipped. Hey look, there Diana goes again!” Legno then cupped his hands and screamed, “Diana! Hey, Diana!”
“What!” she screamed back. “What is it you want this time, creep!”
“That dress makes your ass look fat!”
His legs now going faster than anyone thought humanly possible, Legno made his way through the woods with the blistering speed of an arrow shot by an expert marksman. His movements were precise, fluid, and flawless.
Now deep in the heart of the Sicilian woodlands, Diana was finally no longer in sight and no longer could the screams of “If you thought that hurt the first time, wait until I use my good leg!” be heard. Legno considered it safe for a momentary stop. And as soon as he did, a fuming Timothy shouted, “Why in Heaven’s name did you think that was a good idea!”
“As great as true love is,” Legno replied, his breathing once again heavy, “I needed a little more incentive to keep moving.”
Now confused, Timothy asked, “And that would be…?”
“Not wanting to get kicked in the testicles twice in the same morning,” he answered back with a smirk. “Now, can we sit for a spell? It feels like my lungs are on fire.”
“Yes, that’s probably for the best. But do remember, we’re on a tight schedule,” Timothy warned.
“Yeah, I know, I know,” Legno replied as he plopped down on the ground. The sound of his breathing had that loud, nasally, wheezing noise that mimicked the tone of an enraged howler monkey. Thankfully, after a few minutes, his breathing returned to normal, and his heart no longer felt as if it was going to burst out of his chest.
Placing his hands on the ground, he pushed himself up, wiped his now-running nose with a dirty finger as a loud *SNURF* sound radiated from his nostrils, rubbed his face, and cleaned the mess on his hands with the backside of his shorts.
Immediately trying to forget what he had just witnessed, a repulsed Timothy asked “Are we…*urp*.” Right away, Timothy balled his left hand in to a fist and covered his mouth.
After taking a second to make sure he stomach was settled, he began again, “Terribly sorry about that. Are we quite ready, then?”
“Yep, yep,” Legno responded, some of his pep returning to him, “let’s get a move on.”
With Legno back on his feet, the pair resumed their journey. The boy was getting more and more acclimated to the outdoors as he maneuvered his lithe, narrow frame over the rocks and through the trees. All the while, Timothy played director, instructing Legno on where to go at every twist and turn.
“We’re getting close!” Timothy exclaimed eagerly, “Just a few more minutes and we should be there. Take a right at this bend, and that will guide you the rest of the way. The old girl’s going to be delighted to meet you, I’m sure.”
“Cool, cool. I love old ladies. They always have the most interesting smells. How do you know this one exactly?”
“Oh, we’re old acquaintances. She’s the one who taught me everything I know and made me what I am.”
Legno’s face lit up as he turned to Timothy, “So the top hat…!”
“Enough with the hat, son. As I was saying, back when I was just another insect, acting entirely on instinct, something drew me to her cabin. It’s hard to say what; life before that day’s not quite clear. But what I do remember is that it was as if I had been living in a house where the curtains were always closed. And after she helped me, it was as if the curtains had finally been drawn and I was able to see the sun for the first time.”
“But why did she change you? I feel like most people would just step on you when your back is turned.”
“A lovely thought, thank you for that,” Timothy drolly responded.
“Just sayin’,” Legno remarked under his breath.
TO BE CONTINUED
Things are certainly heating up now, aren’t they? Looks like Legno’s finally getting a stroke of luck in Timothy, but can the little bugger actually deliver? And how exactly did he become the walking, talking insect we’ve all grown to love? Guess you’re going to have to keep reading to find out! In the meantime, keep yourself busy by commenting and sharing on Facebook and Twitter.
Wood You Be Mine? Act 2, Part 1
Welcome everyone to the start of Act 2, and I hope you’re all caught up on Act 1! If you need a quick refresher, last we left off, Legno had just met Timothy, an enormous talking bug who promised to change his life. Will he follow through? Let’s find out in Act 2 of Wood You Be Mine?
Legno stared, his mouth agape, his eyes wide. He tried to respond, but all he could manage to muster was “Bluuuuuhhhhhhh?”
“Understandably, this must be a lot for you to take in,” Timothy replied.
“Bluuuuuhhhhhhh?” Legno continued.
“It’s not everyday one sees a well-dressed, well-mannered, and above all else, well-spoken insect, is it?”
Silence for a second, followed by “Bluuuuuhhhhhhh?”
“Okay,” Timothy said, slightly annoyed and beginning to turn away, “I guess I’ll find some other boy to woo that cute little lady that you have eyes for.”
“Wait!” Legno yelled, finally with actually words, “You’re not serious, are you?”
Turning back towards Legno, Timothy calmy stated, “No. I’m not. But I assumed that would snap you out of it.”
Although the initial shock had finally subsided, Legno still couldn’t believe his eyes: There in front of him was some sort of overgrown cockroach, roughly thirteen centimeters in height. Adorned with what appeared to be a blazer, walking stick, and a top hat, Legno got on his hands and knees for a closer look.
“I’m sure you have a lot of questions for me,” Timothy remarked.
Legno’s gray eyes squinted as he examined the creature. After a few moments, he responded, “Where the hell do you find a top hat that small?”
“Really? You see a talking insect, and that’s your question? My attire?”
“It’s so well crafted. Is it a fashion thing, or do you just have a weird-shaped head?”
Having no interest in playing in to the boy’s stupidity, Timothy began, “I saw how those two men treated you. Not very helpful, were they?”
Legno’s eyes narrowed, and he turned his head, not wanting Timothy to see his expression of shame and embarrassment. “No. Not at all,” he replied.
“You’re just a young man looking for love, aren’t you?”
“Yes! Absolutely! And they refused to help!” he responded, his eyes widened and head snapping forward to face Timothy again.
“Ah, well that’s where I come in. Don’t you know why they refused?”
“Because the whole damn world’s out to get me,” he muttered pathetically as he turned his head to face the ground.
“Oh stop with that woe-is-me type attitude,” Timothy said with a sigh. “You’ll get nowhere in life thinking like that. Take a look at me for instance…”
“…and your hat…”
“Take a look at me for instance,” Timothy repeated, “I wasn’t born this way. I started out as just another common member of the Recticulitermes lucifugus.”
A baffled look danced across Legno’s face and he asked “You’re…rectal fungus?”
“Why don’t you just do us both a favor and keep quiet for a while? Now, as I was saying, I was just another common insect, but I always knew I deserved more. I had the potential to be more, and it was going unrealized.”
“So you ‘being more’ meant becoming an abnormally large bug with abnormally small clothes?”
“No, son. Me ‘being more’ meant a chance at a new start and a new beginning to make my life anything I wanted it to be. All I needed was that push in the right direction,” Timothy explained, “And I was able to amass everything one could want, including love.”
“You were able to find love?” Legno’s interest was now truly piqued. Timothy had said the magic word.
“Indeed I was,” Timothy replied. “And you can, too. And as I said earlier, I’m going to help.”
“This girl, this…?”
“This Marion. She’s not quite human, correct?”
“She’s, well…no. She’s a doll. But at the same time, she’s more human than the rest of us.”
Timothy nodded. Sure, what the boy had just said made absolutely no sense, but a mixture of youth and infatuation rarely made for the most sound of minds.
“So,” Legno began, “what do we do? How can you help me?”
“Oh, it quite simple, son,” Timothy replied.
“I’m going to help you become a wooden boy.”
Legno was taken aback. That idea, it was…it was…
“…the best idea I HAVE EVER HEARD!” Legno exclaimed.
“I thought you might like it,” Timothy said with a smile.
“And then the Geminis…es will have to take me along with them! A doll that can sing and dance all his own, they’d make a killing!”
“My thoughts exactly!” Timothy declared, sharing Legno’s enthusiasm for the idea.
“But why help me? I’m no one to you,” Legno asked in a rare moment of lucidity.
“When life is kind enough to grant you a chance at something better, the least you can do is to pay it forward. These Gemini Brothers, they’re like so many other people in the world: They look to put others down, suppress their potential, and keep them from obtaining what they want and what they deserve. And that includes you, son.
“A person can grow bitter and angry when they are denied their heart’s desire,” Timothy continued, “and I’d hate to see a boy with his whole life ahead of him become jaded towards the world at such a young age. The thought of it just breaks my heart.”
An image of Saggezza flashed in to Legno’s mind and a pang of empathy struck him. He was beginning to piece together why his surrogate father drank so much.
“That’s…that’s really nice,” Legno replied, noticeably touched by Timothy’s kindness. “But how do we go about that?”
“Simple. We see the witch who made me what I am.”
“We see which what?” a confused Legno asked.
“No,” Timothy responded, almost immediately.
“I don’t know, that’s why I’m asking,” retorted Legno.
“I’m not doing shtick with you. We’re going to see a witch, as in a woman with magical powers,” Timothy countered, not interested in the back-and-forth that was sure to ensue.
“Fine,” Legno pouted as he began the rise back to his feet, “but it would’ve been a riot.”
At that moment, Timothy, with a few deliberate hops, began a scramble up the left side of Legno.
*Hop* First to his ankle.
*Hop* Then to his knee.
*Hop* Next to his forearm.
“It would’ve been…”
*Hop* And finally resting upon his shoulder.
“Utter hilarity,” Timothy finished, slightly out of breath, “but we have to be on our way if we want to get to my friend’s house. I imagine you’d like to get there sooner rather than later.”
“Fair enough,” Legno responded. “Just point me in the right direction.”
TO BE CONTINUED
And with that, the first part of Act 2 wraps up! How do you like it compared to Act 1? I’m more than a little interested in your thoughts, so let me know on Facebook or Twitter!
See you all in a week!
To everyone who’s followed along so far, I present to you the thrilling conclusion to Act 1 of Wood You Be Mine? I hope you’ve enjoyed reading it as much as I’ve enjoyed writing it. And don’t worry — we still have two acts left.
Last we left off, Legno was trying to convince the Brothers Gemini for a chance with Marion, a sexy, seductive (to Legno) marionette. Will they let him? Hint: No. Like I said, there are still two acts left up in this bitch.
And if you need catching up, check out Act 1, Part 4 here. Enjoy!
“Don’t encourage him,” Giovanni said, snapping at his brother. “Okay, listen…wait, what’s your name?”
“Legno Abigail Ragazzo.”
“Okay, Legno. Marion here is a doll…”
“Oh man, is she…”
“No, shut up, you said that already. Listen and let me finish. Marion is an actual doll. She’s made of wood. She has no flesh, no organs, and no brain.”
“Sounds like a match made in heaven if you ask me, Gio,” Giuseppe choked out, partially laughing at his own joke.
“You seem like a nice kid,” Giovanni continued, ignoring his brother’s comment, “a little dense, but not your fault. Frankly, I blame the schools. But that’s neither here nor there. My point is that you two can’t be together. Why don’t you try finding a nice living girl your own age?”
“But…” Legno began, before being cut off by Giovanni.
“We’re doing one more show here tonight at dusk,” he stated in a very matter-of-fact manner, “Same spot. If you want to, come by and we’ll let you say good-bye to ‘Marion’ before we head back north.”
“Yeah,” Giuseppe said, picking her up, “Maybe she’ll even let you give her a kiss good-bye.” Turning his head to the doll, he continued, “Won’t ya, love?”
Giuseppe, speaking in a high-pitched voice out of the side of his mouth, responded to his own question as if he were Marion, “Oh, that would be the cat’s pajamas!”
“Oh, you’re a filthy little slut, aren’t ya, love?” Giuseppe cackled, then immediately tossed Marion into her carrying case. “Gio, if you kindly, a little help disassembling the stage?”
“Wait, what are you…!” Legno cried.
“We still have a lot work to do before we can pack it in for the morning,” Giovanni responded, exhausted from the conversation. “I’d let you stay, but to be honest, you’re kind of a weirdo, and I’m a little afraid you’re going to fondle the doll.”
“I’d be gentle.”
“I’m sure you would be. Listen: Tonight. Dusk. Come early so you get a good view of the show. But for now, seriously, get out of here.”
“Don’t be so hard on the kid, Gio. He and Marion might actually make a good pair. Sure, she’s made of pine, but something tells me Legno here’s got a little wood in him, too.”
Giovanni, now scrunching his eyes and rubbing his temples, pleaded with his brother, “Beppe, please shut up. Legno, we’ll see you later today, alright?”
“Fine,” Legno pouted as he limped away, his body once again heavy with a feeling of rejection.
He walked down the cobblestone streets, hands in his pockets, anger in his eyes.
“Stupid!” Legno exclaimed as he kicked a rock down the street, “Gemini!” he yelled again, punting yet another rock, “Brothers!” he screamed at the top of his lungs as a third rock went flying into the distance.
“You sure are an angry fellow, aren’t you, lad?” a tiny, somewhat gravely voice said.
Legno looked around, trying to find the source, “Who…?”
“Maybe I can help with that,” the mysterious voice added. “I overheard that little exchange you had with those gypsies. Not very helpful, were they?”
“No, they were kind dou…” Legno started saying, still looking around. “Wait, seriously, who are you and where are you?”
“Look down, son.”
Peering at the ground, Legno discovered who this mystery person was, except it wasn’t a person at all…
…it was a giant talking bug.
“My name is Timothy, and I’m going to make all of your dreams come true.”
END OF ACT 1
Holy crap, Act 1 is finally done. Who would’ve thought that I’d have the attention span to get this far? Certainly not I.
So share on Facebook, retweet on Twitter, or e-mail me with any comments or suggestions! See you in a week!