COUP Chapter 7

Part one

Panel 1: Brandan ominously rises above couch, his eyes golden spirals. Mike: (small text)”Oh, hi daddy.”

Panel 2: Brandan zaps Mike: “DOUBLY SHUNNED! WHOS NEXT?!”

Panel 3: Jason: “I thought you hated interrobangs?” 

Panel 4: Brandan: “DOUBLY SHUNNED” zaps at Jason but hits Michaela who doesn’t disappear.

Part two

“Um, excuse me?” asked a woman wearing a toga with a bright blue sash draped from her left shoulder to her right hip like a beauty pageant winner (which she probably very well could have been). “Can I help you?”

“I’m sorry about that, Abbot,” Liam said as he rushed to the woman and B.S.Roberts. “This guest has just arrived and is seeking assistance.”

Abbot Abby Abbott nodded, then furrowed her brow. “Yes, indeed—you are slightly transparent, aren’t you? And that hideous, garish clothing you’re wearing! Either you are a ghost from a different age, or you shouldn’t be on Faewalk.”

“The latter,” B.S.Roberts admitted. “I was summoned here to be a ghostwriter.”

“Very interesting.” Abbot Abbott said and prodded his shoulder with a long, nimble finger. “Despite your etherealness, you still appear made of solid matter.”

 “That’s because I’m still alive!”

“A satisfactory response. What assistance do you require?”

Looking at the woman like she was daft, B.S.Roberts answered, “I want to go home. I’ve been held captive here for two years, forced to write crappy romance novellas!”

“What realm are you from?”


“Your homeworld.”

“Oh, Earth.” B.S.Roberts paused momentarily, remembering the comic strip Brandan that he’d pawned the magical quill to the day before. “The colorful one.”

“While I do not understand the meaning of your amendment, I do believe I recognize the name of your realm. Fortunately for you, you’ve arrived here while we have the sharpest minds from across the Unfounded gathered to determine the true nature of the Discombobulation and formulate a plan to stop the phenomenon.  Between our extensive archives and the scholars, we should be able to send you home with relative ease.”

“The Discombobulation? Oh, that’s just—” B.S.Roberts started before being distracted by Balatar marching toward him.

“Now, see here!” Archwizard Warford Cholmondeley shouted trying to catch up with the newly created man.

Instead of responding to his pursuer, Balatar snatched the first-draft copy of The Wizard’s Staff with an adamant, “Lemme see that!”

B.S.Roberts, Abbot Abbott, Archwizard Cholmondeley, Liam, and every other person in the forum (because, in case you forgot like the author, they were still standing in a crowded amphitheater) watched in mute fascination as the old-but-incredibly-fit wizard read through the manuscript.

Balatar’s eyes rose from the parchment, practically red in fury. “Okay, who’s the peeping bard that was watching me yesterday? Who’s the wannabe paparazzi that decided to invade my privacy? Who’s the son-of-a-worg  that—”

“That’s quite enough of that sort of talk,” Archwizard Cholmondeley interjected. “You are in the presence of ladies!”

“And what in the hells is that supposed to mean?” Balatar shot back. “I know plenty of women with tongues that could make a sailor blush! But you are attempting to distract me, aren’t you! You are trying to divert my attention! You think you can derail my train of thought!1 No, you won’t bamboozle me into complacency. You shant thwart my line of inquiry!  So, I ask again—who has been keeping tabs on me?

Very slowly, B.S.Roberts raised his hand. You know, like an idiot.

“You?” Balatar raged. “Why you semilucent son-of-a-worg, I’m going to give you something to write about!”

“Wait,” Abbot Abbott shouted and turned to the ghostwriter. “That was the first chapter of an unpublished biography—”

“Not a bio, just a smutty romance novel. And the discarded first draft of the first chapter at that,” B.S.Roberts mumbled.

“It’s very much a biography considering the subject is standing right here threatening to injure you.”

He had nothing to say to that except, “Fair enough.”

“But the question I had was this: are you saying it was Macy Blush who summoned you to Faewalk?”

“And her agent, yeah.”

“But she prides herself for being an adventurer-novelist!”

“She’s more an adventurer than a writer.”

“If word of this got out…” Archwizard Warford Cholmondeley thought out loud, only to have his sentence finished by a brand-new voice coming from the entrance from which B.S.Roberts had come.

“Catastrophic for her career.”

Everybody spun and, for dramatic effect, gasped even though very few of those in attendance knew who the newcomers were.

Standing at the door was Macy’s white-robed agent and the Mages of the Bay process server, Bernie (just Bernie, like Madonnat).

“You’ve caused a lot of trouble, B.S.Roberts,” the agent said, shaking his head sadly.

“Ah shite.”

Because of the Discombobulation, there seems to be some confusion on if The Wizard’s Staff is fiction or nonfiction… what say you?

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