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ERB 100-Word Drabbles
by Robert Allen Lupton
Today is September 1, 2018 and the 100 word ERB drabble is called, "First Encounter."
The two Waziri were camped near a waterfall when the drums started. They followed the steady beat, by the light of the full moon.
The apes pounded hollow logs and danced under the dum-dum tree. Their screams and growls echoed through the jungle.
‘Look a boy child dances with them.”
“He’s too pale to be Waziri.”
I don’t care. We should help him.”
“Leave him. We don’t need another mouth to feed. We can’t fight a tribe of apes.”
The child stopped dancing and climbed into the lap of a female ape.”
“You’re right. He looks happy. Leave him be.”
On September 2, 2018, the ERB themed 100 word drabble today is called "Bigger Shovel".
Abner Perry read The Scarecrow of Oz at age eight and believed that if he dug a deep enough hole, he’d get to China. He took the book back to the library and started digging on Saturday.
On Sunday, his father asked why he was digging up the yard.
“Abner, it’ll take years. It’s 8000 miles and China’s not on the opposite side. The ocean is.”
“I bet there’s caves, tunnels, and hollow places. Nobody really knows what’s inside. I need a big steam shovel.”
“No, you need to fill this hole and wash your hands. What’s inside is dinner.”
September 3, 2018 and today's 100 word ERB themed drabble is called "Making Friends."
Not much to do during a Nebraska winter, so Victoria Custer played basketball and ran. She shot lights out and played defense like a Swiss Guardsman. She ran to school in the cold and dark.
One morning, a starving wolf chased her along the frozen and-deeply rutted dirt roads. She fed it her lunch and brought food the next two weeKs. “I’m not Red Riding Hood and you better not be the big bad wolf.”
Another wolf threatened her and her well-fed companion chased it away. She saluted her wolf and the creature nodded. It stayed until the spring thaw.
September 4, 2018 and the drabble today stars Carson Napier. It's called "School Daze."
Carson Napier was seven years old the first time he rode his bicycle to school. He never made it. He circled the block six times and each time ended up back at his own driveway.
His mother found him sitting on the curb when she took the trash out later that morning. “Honey, you should be at school.”
“I know, but no matter how hard I tried, I ended up at home.”
“Are you afraid of school? Are there bullies?”
“Not at all, it’s just that every time I come to a corner, it just seems right to turn left.”
TIME TO RELOCATE
Today is the fifth of September. 2018 and the 100 word ERB themed drabble is "Time to Relocate."
Jules De Vac’s fencing skills weren’t admired in his native France. He fought several duels and won them all, but his short stature and homely face earned him nothing but derision from the men and women of the court. The Queen disliked him.
He challenged and killed a member of the king’s guard over a trivial insult. Unknown to De Vac, the man was the Queen’s consort and she demanded his head.
He decided he was tired of France and determined to seek his fortune in England. Perhaps, the court of Henry III would better appreciate his skills and demeanor.
WHAT THE FUTURE HOLDS
September 6, 2018. Today's drabble is "What The Future Holds."
Julian smiled at his newborn son and said, “We’ll call him Junior.”
His wife guided the child to her breast and replied, “Why not. I like your name or I wouldn’t have married you. I want people to know he’s our son. Perhaps, naming him so will start a family tradition.”
“It’s a good time to be alive. The Earth has disarmed and we don’t study war no more. There aren’t even rumors of war. Our descendants will live in peace for twenty or thirty generations.”
“Of course, my husband. What could threaten us; Martians or men from the moon?”
IT'S A MYSTERY
September 7, 2018- Today's 100 word ERB themed drabble is named "It's A Mystery." The photo is from the film, 'Mongombo."
It was dark, but Tarzan didn’t care. His senses of hearing and smell were so well developed that he could pinpoint every animal in the jungle. Sheeta breathed and Bara, the deer, stepped softly. Histah slithered in search of a bird’s nest. Tantor rumbled in the distance and the scent of crocodile reached Tarzan's nose.
The stench of a hunting party scattered the animals. Their clumsiness broke the silence and even the sleeping birds woke and flew away.
Tarzan shook his head. How did the stinky clumsy creatures live to adulthood, let alone reproduce. Even female warthogs have certain standards.
YOU STARTED IT
Today is September 8, 2018 and the the drabble of the day stars Edgar Rice Burroughs. Hope you enjoy, "You Started It."
As an aside, I have two Edgar Rice Burroughs first editions with Otis Adelbert Kline's bookplate inside the front cover. The events in this 100 word story are pure conjecture on my part.
Edgar Rice Burroughs read Otis Adelbert Kline’s and Ralph Milne Farley’s Venus books with quiet amusement. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.
When Kline published his first Mar’s book, the Tarzan creator ceased to be amused and decided that what’s good for the goose is good for the gander. His editors wanted a new series and Venus seemed as good a place as any.
His new protagonist, Carson Napier, arrived on Venus by mistake.
Burroughs told his friends the mistaken arrival was a hidden message to Kline. “He went the wrong direction when he brought his characters to Mars.”
NOT FIT FOR A PIG
9/9/2018 and the 100 word ERB Drabble of the day is called, "Not Fit For A Pig."
Tarzan visited the cannibal village. He’d established an uneasy peace with them. They guarded one side of his territory and didn’t prey the Wazari. There was an uneasy peace.
Tarzan noticed a graveyard and said, “Why, I thought you ate your dead.”
“Some men have been cursed by the gods. They are too crazy or too evil to eat. Craziness, like bravery, is carried in the heart. Sometimes they manage to become leaders before we understand their foolishness and kill them.”
“Why not feed them to the pigs?”
“The pigs know better. They piss on the bodies and walk away.”
JUST THE FACTS
September 10, 2018 and today's drabble is "Just The Facts."
Him Abtol reinvented himself when he inherited the title of Jeddak of the Panars. He wasn’t content with the title, but claimed he’d defeated Okar and gave himself the title, Jeddak of Jeddaks.
Abtol said, “Who will nay-say me. The claim is enough. I don’t have to prove it, challengers have to disprove it. Most people won’t make the effort.”
Later he kidnapped John Carter’s granddaughter. He planned to make her his eighth wife.
Carter disagreed, captured, and imprisoned Abtol while the Helium Navy destroyed his armies.
Carter observed, “If saying so made a thing true, liars would be rich.”
SORT THE DEAD
9/11/2018, a day to remember, and the 100 word ERB themed drabble is my 100th drabble and is titled "Sort The Dead."
Ho Ran Kim, the son of Jeddak of the Horz Orovars trained to ascend the throne upon his father’s death. A caravan wandered into town. They were seized and executed.
“Father, why kill everyone who comes to Horz. We should learn from new people.”
“Fool. New people conspire to conquer us by war or trickery. The dead don’t win.”
“Are all new people bad?”
“We kill them and let Issus judge the dead."
Pan Dee Chee wanted to see the world and resolved to free the next captive. As he freed John Carter, both men thought, “It’s my lucky day.”
NOSE OF THE BEHOLDER
September 12, 2018 - Today's 100 word ERB drabble is "Nose of the Beholder." It's from Apache Devil.
“Dirty” Cheetim was proud of his saloon and brothel, The Hog Ranch. It was right on Main Street in San Carlos, Arizona. He did have trouble keeping staff, no woman no matter how far she’d fallen wanted to work at a brothel called The Hog Ranch.
Three women quit on Monday. “Can’t work here no more. Stinks too much.”
“It’s ‘sposed to stink. Hog Ranch, remember.”
“Hog’s breath is more like it.”
“Hog’s breath is better than no breath at all.”
“Depends on whether you’re breathing or smelling. The three of us are gonna find a cesspool and freshen up.”
September 13, 2018 and today's ERB themed 100 word drabble is "Repeat Offender."
"Honus Hasta founded a new city, Castrum Mare, on an East Sea island. To ensure the safety of his people, he enforced very simple laws.
All crimes were punishable by death to the perpetrator and his family. The tendency to be a criminal might be inherited. Consequently, there was little crime.
A man came to the city and finding most homes unguarded and unprotected, he robbed several houses before his apprehension.
At his trial, he said, “I was frightened and hungry. I won’t ever do it again.”
Hasta motioned his guards to take the man away. “I know you won’t.”
Posting the daily 100 word ERB themed drabble for 9/14/2018 a day early. Here's "Hooja's Knights." It's a bad pun.
Hooja, The Sly One, abducted Dian, The Beautiful every chance he got. He raised an army and planned to conquer Pellucidar.
Abner Perry called the Sly One’s followers Hoosiers – a name for the inhabitants of the state of Indiana. The name amused him to the point that he even called the area where Hooja ruled, Indiana.
The Hoosiers and Perry’s forces engaged in a great naval battle. The Hoosier warriors peeked up and down over the gunwales and their helmets were only briefly visible like targets in a midway game.
Abner said, “They look like a bunch of bobbing knights.”
Posting the 100 word drabble for September 15, 2018 a day early. Should be on schedule on the 16th. This one is called "Jungle Law."
Tarzan and D’Arnot shadowed the German soldiers. The Germans weren’t respectful of each other or of the jungle. Tarzan noticed some of the soldiers steal from the others.
D’Arnot said, “Stealing is against the law. If caught, they’ll be punished.”
“Yes, man’s laws and rules. Violators can be imprisoned, fined, or even executed. Don’t you have laws here?”
He pointed to a waterhole. A zebra ran to the water and a crocodile pulled it under. “The laws of the Jungle. One law is look before your drink. Break man’s law, go to jail, break nature’s laws and you die.”
Today is September 16, 2018. Today's ERB themed drabble, is "Recruitment."
When the Vikings finished, they loaded the booty on their longships and left England and their dead behind.
One of the dead, wasn’t. Horsan, the Dane, was badly injured. Father Claude, a man of the cloth, found Horsan and nursed him to health.
A band of armed men arrived and their leader asked the Father about Horsan. Claude said, “He can speak for himself.”
Horsan spit on the ground. “I don’t love the English.”
The Outlaw of Torn smiled. “Nor I. Ride with me. I fight the English.”
Horsan stood and said, “I’m always happy to kill some more Englishmen.”
WAR TODAY, WAR TOMORROW
September 17, 2018 and the drabble of the day is "War Today, War Tomorrow."
Balzo Maro said, “War is the natural state of man. Is there not war on your planet?”
Tangor responded, “Yes, but we’re trying to overcome it. Many people believe that violence doesn’t solve anything.”
“We had people like that in Unis, but we killed them all. Death solves all problems, at least for the dead. Do many people disbelieve the effectiveness of applied force?”
“Only the ones who don’t study history. Hitler, Napoleon, Genghis Khan. Geronimo, and Tecumseh could debate it. Churchill, Stalin, and George Washington could judge.”
“Don’t know those words.”
PAY UNTIL IT HURTS
September 18, 2018 - "Pay Until It Hurts" is todays drabble.
The churches and government buildings stood tall and proud in the ruined and abandoned city of Durezz. John Carter and Dejah Thoris found corroded weapons, sand worn buckles, and a few skeletons along the broken cobblestone streets.
John said, “The edifices are magnificent. This was a wealthy town. What happened to the people?”
“The government and churches took their all money little by little. The ones who didn’t starve first, were killed or sold into slavery.”
“A wealthy city should be able to protect itself.”
“True, but tithes and taxes aren’t created to benefit the folks who pay them.”
BABY, THE RAIN MUST FALL
Today is September 19, 2018 and 225 years ago today, the Montgolfier brothers put a a goat, a rooster, and a duck in a hot air balloon and man's conquest of the air began. Later that year, 11-21-1783, the first people flew in a balloon. Today's drabble has nothing to do with that. Here's "Baby, The Rain Must Fall."
“It’s clouding up,” said Barney Custer, who was pretending to be Leopold, the King of Lutha.
His groom cinched the saddle tighter and asked, “Should I unsaddle your horse or will your ride in the parade?”
“But, my King…”
“The cavalry and band will parade and my people will line the street, rain or no."
“But you’re the King.”
“Rain is smart and falls on everyone, king and commoner. The rain knows people are alike beneath their clothes. Rain ignores birth and breeding. It soaks hovels and palaces.”
“You’ll get wet,”
“The rain doesn’t care, why should I?”
SECOND TIME AROUND
Today is September 20, 2018 and the drabble of the day is called, "Second Time Around."
Drak, was a Kro-lu, an arrow man, but he’d been badly injured during his evolutionary journey across Caspak. He’d hated his time as a Ho-lu, or apeman, and he’d lost an arm during his cycle as a Sto-lu. Now, he worked as a one-armed fletcher and made new arrows for Bowen Tyler. Tyler asked about his arm.
“Flying lizard bite. Never learned to swing an axe. I’m ready to give it up and start over."
“Back to the beginning and loop-de-loop one more time.”
“Don’t think it works like that.”
“Why not? Maybe this life was just practice.”
Today is September 21, 2018 and the drabble is "Easy Day." It's the 110th drabble in this series.
Woola was always busy. There were soraks to chase, ulsios to frighten, and food to eat before it turned spoiled. Someone had to eat it.
He patrolled the palace and sniffed every bush, tree, and rock. The palace grounds were Woola’s territory and no trespassers were allowed.
He smelled several Red Martians, both male and female. He watched them carefully, but wasn’t allowed to bite them. Woola didn’t understand why. A little nip will keep folks toeing the line.
He finished before lunch. He’d patrol again this afternoon. For now, he picked a warm spot to nap. He liked naps.
GO TO CLASS
September 22, 2018,the anniversary of hanging for the last people for witchcraft in the United States (1692). Well, so far anyway. Today's drabble is called, "Go To Class."
Bowen J. Tyler, Jr. was the son of shipbuilder. He wasn’t too concerned with his studies, World War One loomed on the horizon. It filled the news and the thoughts of the nation.
Tyler returned his natural science books to the campus book store and stopped attending his classes. His best friend said, “War or not, you need to learn this stuff.”
Tyler laughed. “No, I won’t. I’m taking a boat to France and joining the Lafayette Escadrille. I’ll fly airplanes and fight the Germans. Nothing I learn about dinosaurs or cave men is going to do me any good.”
Today is September 23, 2018 and on this date in 1962, ABC debuted its first color television show, The Jetsons. Go, Astro, go. The drabble today is "Monkey See."
Ulysses Paxton kept his word to the man from Ptarth, Hovan Du, after the two captured Xaxa and restored Valla Dia to her own body.
Paxton removed Hovan Du’s brain from the cranium of the white ape and put it back in the man’s body.
Horvan Diu said, “What happens now. I’ve been a white ape so long I don’t remember how to be a man.”
Paxton said, ‘You’ll be the voice of Tur. People will worship you, believe you, and obey your every command. You’ll be their god.”
“So it’s my turn to make monkeys out of everyone else.”
September 24, 2018 and someone out there figured out that it's my birthday. Pretty clever since I hadn't posted it. Today's drabble is 'Mighty Fallen."
Imigeg, the former high priest of the Vanquished Leopard Men cult and tribe hid in the mud and bushes along the shore and watched Tarzan leave with the only way to escape the island.
The old cannibal was worried. When night came he heard the Leopard warriors search for food.
Surely, the men would recognize him and obey his orders. He said confidently, “We’ll build rafts. There are fish enough to feed us all.”
A warrior picked up the priest and broke his skinny neck. “I don’t like fish and I don’t like you. Somebody start a fire. I’m hungry.”
I GUARANTY IT
September 25, 2018 and today's post is about a minor character from the Outlaw of Torn. Remember, there are no small actors, just small parts. Enjoy, "I Guaranty It." The artwork for this one is by some old guy named Rembrandt.
Isaac the Jew wasn’t offended by his name. He wore it proudly. His father, also Isaac the Jew said, “Better than the farmer, blacksmith, baker, or plowman.”
Young Isaac said, “Those are honorable appellations.”
“As is ours. We broker fair dealings. Our word is our guaranty.”
“That doesn’t seem like much.”
People pay us because they mistrust each other. 13th Century England is like the rest of the world. Honesty is rare. Highwaymen aren’t the only brigands. Kings, clergy, and outlaws are all thieves and saints. Charge for your word, my son. Trust is a commodity well worth fair payment.”
TIME TO MOVE ON
September 26, 2018 and on this date in 1789, John Jay took the oath of office and became the first Chief Justice. The drabble today is "Time To Move On."
Diane Henders said, “Since you call yourself Idaho, you’re not from here. Got any experience?”
“My parents died from the cholera and I worked on my uncle’s ranch.”
“Did he sell his ranch?”
“Nope, I was on the way back from town with a wagon load of supplies. The river was up and I lost control of the horses. The wagon drifted until it hit and overturned the keelboat full of whiskey. I crawled to shore and watched the food and liquor float downstream.”
“What happened then?”
“Knew how mad my uncle would be and decided to move to Arizona.”
AT YOUR SERVICE
September 27, 2018 - on this date in 1962, Silent Spring by Rachel Carson was published. Today's drabble is "At Your Service."
Bridge said, “James, a little more firewood, please. Break out the gin and an extra can of beans. We’ll be two for dinner tonight. Prepare my bedroll.”
The Oskaloosa Kid asked, “James, who’s James? I don’t see nobody else.”
“He’s my butler. Truth is, he’s mostly imaginary these days. He didn’t like trains. I still talk to him. Makes me feel less alone. Don’t you have imaginary friends?”
“Nope. Had a teddy bear once, but he never did nothing I told him. Never answered when I talked to him”
“You know, your bear and James have a lot in common."
WHO'S THE BOSS
September 28, 2018, one week from the start of the 47th Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta. Today's drabble is "Who's the Boss?"
Carl Jenson was a scoundrel. He searched for Jeanne Jacot for years only to lose her as soon as he located her. He traded in ivory and other more disreputable goods until he decided to capture animals for views.
With his Swedish compatriots, he captured a baboon king, but before he could ship the hairy monarch to a zoo, Korak intervened and led the baboons against the Swedes.
The Baboon King said, “I’ll keep him in a cage.”
Korak said, “You’ll have to feed him and clean his cage.”
“That makes me his servant.”
Korak smiled. “Yes.”
“Let him go.”
September 29, 2018 and on this day in 1513, Spanish explorer Vasco Nunez de Balboa discovered the Pacific Ocean. This came as a complete shock to the millions of people living there. They had no clue that the ocean was missing. Today's drabble is "Pilot Error". The art is titled "Fallen Angel by Odilon Redon, 1880.
The Weiroo survived the battle with a flying lizard at the cost of a badly damaged wing. He crashed into the Galu village. The people saw him drop from the skies, inspected his one wing, and worshiped him.
“I would return to my people, but I must be able to fly. My broken wing didn’t heal properly.”
“Perhaps the craftsmen can fix it.”
The leatherworkers, fletchers, and metalsmiths did the best they could and the Weiroo flew raggedly into the skies. He barely cleared a mountain.
The woman said, “I'm worried. We sent him off on a wing and repair.”
September 30, 2018 and in 1955, actor James Dean, 24, was killed in a two-car collision near Cholame, California. The drabble today is "Cold Storage." I leave it to you to figure out the Burroughs' book this one is based on.
Kolani tracked the red bear easily through the snow. The bearskin would convince Lilami to be his mate.
The bear was fast in the snow. Kolani staggered though the deep drifts in rabbit fur covered feet. It was cold and his animal skin cloak only reached his knees. The sun began to set on the prehistoric mountain.
Kolani shivered. His feet were numb. He crawled under an escarpment and packed snow to block the wind. He was tired and freezing. He told himself, “I’ll only rest a moment. I’ll find the bear at sunrise and take its hide to Lilami.”
Copyright 2018: Robert Allen Lupton
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