A drop of sweat rolled down his forehead, and slid into his eyes. It stung. Mr. Blond sucked in his breath. He turned his head away, making a clandestine attempt to wipe away the sweat before the Judges noticed.
One of the judges cleared her throat, "Something wrong, Mr. Blond?"
"No," he said, swallowing hard, "Please continue."
At the center of the bench was a much older woman with short, white hair and a severe expression on her face. He knew her only as Agent N. She stared at him hard, without blinking, until he shifted uncomfortably in his chair.
Agent N cleared her throat before she spoke:
"Alright, Mr. Blond. You're on a boat, blindfolded. You don't know where you are, but you do know that your target is right behind you. He has a gun aimed at your back, what do you do?"
"I wait for a wave to hit and disrupt his aim. Then, I sweep my leg around, and hit him off the boat. As he falls into the water, I shout, 'Sea you later!'"
Agent N pressed her lips together, and he thought he saw her shake her head. As she scribbled away on the paper in front of her, he wiped the sweat from his forehead, willing himself to do better.
At last, she cleared her throat, and asked:
"You're in a cave. Your face an army of savages, wielding knives as long as your forearm. Your hands are tied behind your back, and they are running at you, screaming for your blood."
Mr. Blond bowed his head, whispering under his breath.
"Mr. Blond? An answer, please."
"Okay. Okay. I use my toe to press a trigger in my shoe. It sets off an explosive that shakes the cave, and makes spikes fall from the ceiling."
Agent N held up a hand to stop him, "Spikes?"
"You know, those pointy things that grow in caves."
"Oh. You mean stalactites."
"Yeah. Stalacspikes. And after the spikes fall down and impale them, I say, "Never bring a knife to a stalac-fight."
He watched as Agent N made a mighty effort to not roll her eyes. Instead, she scribbled furiously on her paper.
"Last question. You're in the villain's secret hideout. More specifically, you've snuck in through the mail room, when a pair of guards notice your presence. As the fight progresses, all three of you lose your weapons, and it devolves into a battle with the sharp, pointed edges of mail."
Mr. Blond sucked in a long breath.
You can do this. Come on.
He bounced his leg, he drummed his fingers, and he bit his lip.
"Mr. Blond, you have ten seconds remaining."
"Is the villain's hideout in a mountain?"
"And how many guards are there?"
"I picked up a rock from outside, and kept it in my pocket. When they start throwing mail at me, I take out my rock, and I bash one over the head. I throw the rock at the other, and when he falls to the floor, I stand over him. I say, 'I guess rock can beat paper.'"
Even sitting this far away, he could feel the breeze from Agent N's massive sigh.
"Mr. Blond, you have, without a doubt, the lamest sense of humor I've have ever had the misfortune of encountering."
His stomach sank.
"Fortunately and mysteriously, that is exactly what High Command ordered. As much as it hurts me to say this, I must congratulate you, Mr. Blond. You passed."
At this, Mr. Blond stood up. He yanked a knife from inside his coat. Before any of the judges could react, he ran up to the bench, and stabbed the knife into Agent N's paper.
"Blond!" she gasped, throwing up her hands as he shredded the paper, "What on Earth do you think you're doing?"
"I wanted to be sure," he said, "that I made the cut."
Agent N narrowed her eyes.
For those of you who are wondering where I've been writing click here. This is my subreddit, which is a tiny home on a big website called reddit.
I'll be periodically lifting stories from my subreddit, and posting them here - hopefully to tie them in with my Monday Blog Posts.
For example, this Monday we talked about How Long it Takes to Write a Book. I gave an example of how many words I write per hour. Here's the breakdown for how long it took me to write this stupid story:
In total, that's 50 minutes work for a complete (albeit very imperfect) version of a story.
Thanks for reading! Leave me a comment about the story, or whatever you want below.