Aphelion Issue 289, Volume 27
November 2023
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Endrick, the Goblin Slayer

The Old Hag’s Tales 1

by Raymond Towers

Gobbling Goblins, in the sewers,
Stray too close, it’s you they’ll skewer.

Scouring ‘cross the countryside,
Their favorite prey, children at night.

Always some would stay out late,
Always some would disappear,

Little piles of bones found later,
This would happen year thru year.

Some say Goblins, they got greedy,
Others say, they’re simply needy.

Matters not what others say,
Just know that Goblins come your way.

They’d raid the orchards, eat the figs,
Or disembowel your favorite pig.

Chickens found without their heads,
Goats and sheep, they all be dead.

Then from the ranches, far and near,
Slaughtered families, they did, my dear.

Got even worse when they reached town,
Now half the residents can’t be found.

Instead of dying, some moved away,
But there was one, would not be swayed.

That one be Endrick, son of a farmer,
Big as two men, and even stronger.

Carries a club, made of mighty oak,
And gauntlets tempered in smithy smoke.

But on his head, he wears no helm,
His face, well known across the realm.

Came to the tavern, there on King’s Hill,
And asked for himself, a keg of ale.

For this, he’d rid the town of Goblins,
Restore the peace we’ve all been wanting.

The patrons scoffed, who was this man?
Could boast so much in their stricken land.

But they agreed, yes, in the end.
Could things be worse than how they’d been?

And so that night, Brave Endrick stood,
In our town square, where no other would.

Of course they came, this Goblin scourge,
And swept our hero with sudden surge.

But with a swing of his mighty club,
Did he halve the number of their mob.

They did regroup, this Goblin gang,
With shrieks and howls, the war began.

Flying Goblins, on walls they’d splat,
Screeching Goblins, rechristened Flat.

Stumbling Goblins, Hobbling Goblins,
Even Goblins Split In Three.

They might have won, but dare I say it?
Had not Endrick turned to sorcery.

From empty air, there came a demon,
Which cast out sparks, and Goblins Screaming.

For whichever miscreant the hero maimed,
The demon would fry ‘fore it got away.

Flaming Goblins, Scattering Goblins,
Burning Goblins ‘cross town square.

Blackened Goblins, Boiling Goblins,
Burnt flesh and hair stench in the air.

A few, they made it to the sewer,
Thinking they’d be not pursued.

But Endrick and his demon had no qualms,
And off they went under the town.

Twelve years have passed since this took place,
And since, none have seen Endrick’s face.

Some claim to have heard sounds of battle,
And howls and Endrick’s hearty laughter.

But those who venture to those depths,
Beware, for few of them come back.

I do utter an infrequent prayer,
For Endrick our bold Goblin Slayer.

You’ve more than earned your keg of ale,
It’s time, my hero, to be revealed.

© 2009 Raymond Towers

Raymond Towers is the pen name for Ramon M. Torres. The author is a 39 year old Mexican-American currently splitting time between home in Beaumon, Ca and work in San Diego, Ca. Although most of the author's writing consists of short stories, he has had ten pieces of prose, in various genres, published on six websites, including four on Darkness.com.

Find more by Raymond Towers in the Author Index.

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