Writing Every Day in October: day 27

Porthaven, Heroes’ Eve night.

The joke for today’s scene came pretty easily, but expanding that joke into a scene as long as the others (i.e. about 500 words) proved a challenge. Now, there’s no reason that it had to be 500 words.

I’ve never set any formal goals for my daily writing for the month, they’ve just averaged out to 500. I guess I’m just stubborn and didn’t want to fall behind my pace with only five days left in the month.

Also, in case it’s not obvious by now, Heroes’ Eve is Realmgard’s Halloween and today is probably the closest I’ve come to explaining what the day (night?) actually involves.

Porthaven, Heroes’ Eve night. A vampire, a squid, a princess, and a cupcake wend their way through the twilit streets of the city. A bespectacled Goblin follows close behind.

Pela isn’t quite sure how she ended up here. Dunstana, Sally, Annie, and Ginger needed an adult escort, and Sally basically volunteered here for the role. Pela doesn’t particularly mind. She always liked Heroes’ Eve and is enjoying hanging out with Dunstana, Sally, Annie, and Ginger, and being one of the kids for the night. Though, of course, that she is being repeatedly mistaken for literally one of the kids — again — is starting to get tiresome.

Being short stinks.

Dunstana glances down in the pillowcase containing her candy. “I think that last house is running out of candy. They gave me a ham.”

“I’ll trade you for it,” Sally offers.

“Don’t worry,” Ginger says. “When we get to my house, my parents have cookies for us.” She glances over her shoulder. “They’ll have some for you too, Pela.”

Pela gives the girl a thumbs-up. Free cookies just sweetens the deal.

Way back when the holiday first started, Heroes’ Eve was meant to celebrate and honour the great heroes of Realmgard’s history — the Quintus Marcellinus Styracosauruses, the Princess Adelaides, the Greybeards, the Blackbootses, the Duchess Fortes.

Now, though, while some people do still dress up as a chosen hero, the holiday is mostly just taken as an opportunity to dress up in any costume, party, and demand a tribute of candy from your neighbours.

As Pela and the girls go on their way, the streets are filled with heroes, monsters, animals and just about everything else under the sun. Pela counts fourteen pirates, twelve knights ten clowns, eight cats, six vikings, and several impressively complex multi-person costumes.

The group turns the corner, and they cross paths with a patrolling member of the Musketeer Guard of Porthaven.

“Well,” the Musketeer says. “What’s all this, then?”

The Musketeer is going for stern severity, though the effect is somewhat ruined by the fact that his own Heroes’ Eve costume is a fish.

“Where’s your adult?” he asks the girls. “It’s not safe for a group of young ladies to be out at night on their own. Least of all tonight, with the ghosts and monsters and what-have-you.”

Pela groans inwardly. She cannot believe it’s happening again.

“But we have an adult!” Dunstana protests.

“Yeah,” Pela says, taking a step forward. “Me. I’m a Goblin, not a kid!”

“Ah,” the Musketeer mutters. “Terribly sorry, Miss. I — Are you Eleonora Strahlend? You look just the picture in the back of your books!”

“Not exactly,” Pela mutters. “It’s just my costume. But, uh, she is my Mom.”

The Musketeer stares down at Pela in silent awe. “Eleonora Strahlend is your Mom? “I’m her biggest fan! I have all of her books! I have all the translations of all her books!”

He leans conspiratorially towards her.

“So, uh, when’s the next book coming out?” he asks in a whisper.

I’m not sure if I’m bad at thinking up costumes for people in general, or if I’m just bad at thinking at thinking up costumes without the benefit of being able to draw from real world history and Pop Culture…

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