Writing Every Day in October: Day 13

Just another day at the University of Porthaven.

Day 13. Once again, this scene began life as an early draft of a Lyte Brigade story that didn’t make it into finalised version, although I ultimately took it in a completely different direction for today’s exercise.


The University of Porthaven’s Department of History is located on the third floor of the northwest wing of North-West Hall, a fairly modest building named for renowned former faculty members Archibald North and Madeline West and is located, to the constant consternation of incoming students, at the southeast corner of campus.

The University of Porthaven’s Department of History is located on the third floor of the northwest wing of North-West Hall, a fairly modest building named for renowned former faculty members Archibald North and Madeline West and is located, to the constant consternation of incoming students, at the southeast corner of campus.

As Scarlet and Amara pass by the University’s library, Amara finds herself fascinated by the fact that a large stack of books has apparently grown a pair of legs and decided to liberate itself from the confines of the library. Walking books is not exactly something she expected to encounter today. Though, she supposes, stranger things have happened.

Several of them to her.

“Hi, Amara!” the books happily exclaim. “Hi, Scarlet!”

Amara marvels at the bizarreness of the situation for a heartbeat until a familiar face with pink hair and pointed ears peers out from around the stack of books.

“Oh, hello, Miss Antiqua,” Amara says to the girl looking up at her.

“Amara needs to talk to your dad, Annie,” Scarlet says. “Is he in his office?”

Annie nods. “Yeah. He sent me to the library to get these books for the paper we’re working on.”

“You would like some help with all those books, Miss Antiqua?” Amara asks.

“Well,” Annie replies. “I should be able to get through these this afternoon.” She looks up to see Amara looking back in amazement. “What? Oh. You meant help carrying them. Yes, please. I’ve already almost fallen over a few times.”

Amara takes her share of the books from the pile. Annie is now merely up to her chin in books, rather than disguised as a living column of literature.

Amara stops at the steps leading up to the door of North-West hall. She pauses to listen.

Do you hear that?” she asks. “Is somebody fighting?

“Oh, don’t worry about that,” Scarlet assures her. “Professor Styrbjorn is just holding office hours.”

“By fighting people?” Amara asks.

Annie nods. “He, uh, he doesn’t like having his students ask for re-grade their assignments,” she explains.

Amara stares blankly at the younger Half-Elf. “So he fights them?”

Professor Harald Styrbjorn is the University of Porthaven’s foremost expert in the history of Hrimfax and the Hrimfaxi diaspora in Realmgard. As it happens, he takes after his own Hrimfaxi viking ancestors, taking offence to even the smallest slight and seeking satisfaction with the utmost severity.

Amara watches in horror as Professor Styrbjorn’s latest supplicant is sent flying out of his office window. Luckily for the student, Professor Styrbjorn has at least had the wherewithal to leave a large stack of pillows below his window to cushion his students’ fall.

The unfortunate student comes crashing down on the pillows, lies there groaning for minute, before unsteadily rising to his feet and brushing himself off. He stares up at Professor Styrbjorn’s window and angrily shakes his fist.

“That paper still deserves a B-Plus!” he insists.

He is met with silence from Professor Styrbjorn’s window — a silence broken by a traditional Hrimfaxi throwing axe whistling through the air to bury itself in the ground inches from the student’s feet.

Amara gapes in horrified fascination.

“We’ll talk later, Professor!” the student calls up to the window before beating a hasty retreat.

“If you think this is bad,” Scarlet says. “You should see him during midterms.”


Note: this should not be viewed as an endorsement of throwing people out of windows.

But what I am endorsing is following me on Facebook, Instagram, or signing up for my email list:

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