Minor Annoyances by Joyce Frohn

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There was a lot of blood; he knew he was dying. Lucan was annoyed as he watched the blood flow from his belly. The knife had hit his liver, if he was any judge of abdominal wounds, which he was. He withdrew the knife and slit his attacker’s throat. He sat down on the slimy, wet cobblestones and waited to die. Of all the places to get killed, why couldn’t it ever be some place clean? The last time it had been in a filthy tavern. Maybe, he thought, he shouldn’t have been bragging about what a great warrior he was. Or maybe next time he would keep his back to the wall.

And now this dirty alleyway. He glanced around; there was no sign of the damsel in distress whom he had gone to rescue. Could it have been a trap? He watched an alley cat wander into his field of vision. Could it be the screaming had just been from that cat, and the guy with the knife just happened to follow him in? That would explain why no one answered when he yelled, “Unhand that maiden, you scoundrel,” though he had known scoundrels who kept quiet when he said that. As Lucan watched his life’s blood ebb away, he tried to count how many times he’d been killed. It was at least ten times this month.

He considered for a moment going back to the quiet life of a scribe. No, maybe try those glass lenses – what are they called eyeglass? Might make it easier to see the attackers, before they put a knife in me. He saw four more muggers lurking in the alley; like vultures. At least, that’s what the shadows looked like. Well, he thought, they’ll be welcome to everything in my purse; a halfpenny, some crumbs, and a dead ant. He preferred pauper’s funerals, anyhow. He hated having to break through the wood of a coffin. Lucan figured that he would be able to dig himself out in less than half an hour. Lucan’s last thoughts as he lost consciousness were that he ought to move out of the city, sometime next week after he unburied himself. Then he would find the stupid witch who sold him that immortality potion and kill her. Several times.


AUTHOR BIO: Joyce Frohn has been a professional writer since leaving college and missing typing all night long. Her first publication was in a magazine dedicated to fans of Ambrose Bierce. Since then she has been in over one hundred publications most weirder than the first. She is married with an eight-year-old daughter who envies how much time her mother spends on the computer.