Sunday, September 19, 2010


Definition: Danger, Risk.

"The first thing that you should know is that the Periculum was not found or discovered. It was created. The second thing is that it is not the only one if its kind. So really referring to it as "The" Periculum is inaccurate. Its more along the lines of this Periculum.

This is important to know because its possible to encounter others. And they don't cancel each other out. When there are two or more Periculums they have a way of combining in unusual ways. Its one of the ways that they are what they are.

The next thing that you need to know is that a person can only have the Periculum once. Once they have lost it, or given it to another, they can never take it back. We have passed it down from father to son carefully. It is part of our service to the city. It helps keep the city strong, and helps to preserve the piece and prosperity of our people.

It is time for the Periculum to pass to you. Do not ever let it out of your possession until it is time to pass it on to another. Remember what I have said, my son. Remember what I have taught you."

At these words my father held out his hand. At first it was empty. But then the flesh of his palm seemed to ripple like water. And then there was a large beautiful jewel resting in his hand.

As I took it from him he let out a sigh. Not a sigh of death or anything morbid like that, but a sigh like one would give when a long worn boot is removed gently from ones foot.

I knew that the Periculum was not really a jewel. That was just a caporial representation. It seemed to tingle in my hand. I knew that I needed to be by myself. But I didn't want to leave my father as if I was anxious to take a gift ungratefully. My father smiled and I couldn't help but think he looked smaller than he had a moment a ago.

"Go." He breathed. "Go and get acquainted with it. There is time to come back and say your good byes."

I smiled back and gave his had a squeeze with my other hand and then left him to go to the room next door. I closed the door, and then carefully not to lose contact with the jewel, unlaced my tunic. It was a bit cold, standing their, but this is how it had been explained to me.

Then holding the Periculum in both hands, I let it melt into my skin.

It was an odd sensation. A warming sensation. And it spread over my flesh like water.

I had been training and working with the guard for years. And I had the scars to prove it. But as the Periculum became mine, I watched years old scars vanish.

I had learned to use all the weapons that defended the city. And to fight in hand to hand combat. No one would want to practice with me again. Odd things would happen in combat from now one. The Periculum would not care about practice. It would effect things like the random toss of a coin if it determined that there was something about the outcome that would make a difference.

Now that is inaccurate again. Periculum didn't make calculations, or determinations. It didn't think and could not be reasoned with. It was like a wind flying in the face of chance. The wind didn't have motives, and couldn't be reasoned with. But it did effect the environment.

After a few moments the feeling of wellbeing began to feel normal. Or at least less unusual. I laced up my tunic again. Not that I had felt cold, mostly out of habit, and returned to may father. He wasn't on deaths door. But his long life had finally reached the point where he could no longer server the city as he once had even with the Periculum. But now that he had passed it on, he would age more quickly, and I wanted to speak with him while the time remained.

And tomorrow, it would be time to start my service to the city.


  1. I'm really impressed with this idea. Can't wait for more. Keep it up. However I would like to know the protagonist's name.

  2. Yeah, I would like to know his name too.

    Hopefully we will find out soon.

  3. I like it. Stands well alone. A bite size. A couple of typos, tisk this. I recomend submitting it to Podcastle.

  4. Looks like this draft is a bit light for Podcastle submission guidlines, but it does fit with their genre.

    But you have inspired me to build this into a more developed story and submit it to them, (and maybe others) to see if I can get it published. Thanks.

  5. One is glad to be of service.

    Don't forget to look at Escape-Pod and Psudo-Pod, they could be testing grounds for your other works.

    As for the length of this story - it seemed to hit that sweet spot of what they call Flash Fiction. It's not that there are un answered questions, but it seems that just enough *are* answered. But more could be ... interesting :)