Friday, September 26, 2008

Chapter 3: Odysseus

Sitting around the table, enjoying a competitive game of Settlers of Catan, a quick-acting friend trapped a small beetle under a bottle cap.  The obvious question of What To Do Next came to my friends, whether to face the fiend or let it sweat it out in the metallic dome.  Being from the Lily Pad, I am always questing for which insects would Make Life Interesting for Mote, or any that might stir Mustardseed out of his recent Mood of Aloofness.  I hopped to, freeing the bug from the metallic prison and keeping him solidly in my hand.  It came to me that the beetle must think me a great big Oaf, perhaps like Polyphemus.  And so I shall call the bug Odysseus, the Greek who was known for his wiles.


Because of the beetle's ability to fly, in an attempt to ensure its delivery, I hurled it, Heavy-Handed and ogre-like, into the Coliseum, the Feeding Pits, the Frog Tank--a nibblet of Beetle Rangoon--sure to tempt the laziest of frogs.

Mote and Mustardseed immediately went on the alert.  The beetle's fate was maligned from the beginning by my excessive throw--he struggled in the toxin-water of the frog beasts, squirming for a piece of Something, Anything.  It reminded my Ogre-mind of my frustration at Odysseus, and my attempt to hurl rocks at him during his escape from my island, after burning my eye to impotency and sneaking out under the fleece of sheep.

Polyphemus and Odysseus

The beetle had the Hero's Resolve, and found a piece of log on which he could climb.  Desperately, he struggled onto its Apex, and pitifully, like a Drowned Rat, into the striking range of Mote the Hunter.

Mote lunged, a Hungry-Hippo lunge, full of vigor and stomach, frog-straight for Odysseus.  But the Hero's luck saved him--a portion of bark blocked Mote's maw, giving Odysseus enough time to Jump for his Life, Casting the Die, Spinning the Wheel of Fate as he chanced another portion of the tank.

Fleet-Footed Mustardseed, Searcher for the Way out of the Aquarium, Devourer of One-Legged Crickets, made true his titles.  With a Chomp and then a Gulp, he Devoured Odysseus, whose luck had Ceased To Be.  It was an Unnerving sight, a Hero of the War, a Slayer of Scilla and Blinder of the Ogre, so quickly gobbled up, unable to make his peace or acknowledge his Doom, except perhaps whilst in the gut of the Frog.

I have recounted this story to Mote and Mustardseed, to swell their pride.  The Frogs, however, had few enthusiastic words in reply.  Mote urged me to finish my story, and asked about the next Hour of the Bug.

1 comment:

Julia Icenogle said...

This is the Funniest Thing I've read in years.

Thank you.