Story Prompt: The antagonist is a five-year-old.
My Story (391 words):
“How is it that a child can be so difficult to overcome?”
I sat smoking with my bud outside our tent. There had been a lull in the fighting and the regiment had pulled away to set up camp near the base of the mountain. It had been a heavy few weeks, and even now our much depleted forces had only an even chance against the rebels. The fewer their number, the fiercer they seemed to get.
Rob flicked his cigarette away with a smooth but minute motion of his fingers. He ran them through his hair. His huge mane was silky in normal conditions, currently matted and greasy. But he was still proud of it, and the rest of his rugged good looks.
“Children are amoral.” He said.
I waited for him to gather his thoughts, patiently pulling the last few drags out of my stale cigarette.
“They don’t really understand right from wrong, not unless they’re taught. They’re veritable blank slates when they’re born. All these rules, we put them in their heads.”
“What’s that got to do with the rebel prince?”
Rob sighed, “He’s five years old. Have you seen children fight? How vicious it can get if adults don’t intervene. Plus the rebels’ life consists only of fighting. That’s all he’s grown up seeing. He may be precocious like our reports suggest but that doesn’t mean he’s more moral than any other kid his age. Even less considering his background.”
“So basically that’s all he knows. He will send in his men ruthlessly to their deaths, over and over. All he knows is that this is a game and he needs to win. He has no concept of losses or recouping or surrender. Worst of all, he has a large supply of men who view him as nothing less than a deity.”
Rob cracked his knuckles, a nervous habit that would give him arthritis. If he lived long enough, that is.
“So we’re facing an opponent who has no concept of losing, of remorse or surrender, who is the head of one of the worst rebel forces in history, and who has no qualms in fighting until the last of the men surrounding him have suffered defeat.”
I sighed and threw away my own cigarette, my last. More fighting to look forward to tomorrow.
Tamoor’s Story (472 words):
Love at first sight is an oft-discussed and little-understood phenomenon. It has adorned the pages of great novels and trite garbage, cinematic masterpieces to pieces of shit. Whether you are a true artists or a true imbecile, when it comes to this subject all have had their say.
None have so far tried to discuss hate at first sight, perhaps because not many teenage girls or middle-aged housewives would part with their hard-earned dollars for a story of how two people decide to hate each other with a burning passion for the rest of their lives.
When Tom laid eyes on Tom, they both felt a deep-seated hatred they did not know they were capable of before that moment. It was an instant of instant dislike that was as swift as it was absolute. Tom squinted at the 5 year old tom cat called Tom.
“My two Toms together at last. He likes you, Tom.”
Tom the cat was no fool, he purred loudly at Tom the human. Helen must never know how he felt; luckily Tom was a cat and his species had perfected the art of hiding their emotions over millenniums with aloofness and detachment. Tom the man, however, was not as well-versed in the subtle art of war and he could barely disguise his disgust for the tabby monstrosity that purred before him.
The first salvo was fired by Tom the cat as he peed all over the bed in the exact spot that Tom the human was supposed to be sleeping on. Tom had to spend the rest of the night on the couch as Tom the cat stared at him with devilish glee
Tom struck back by banishing the cat from the bedroom as he felt he couldn’t perform with two extra pairs of eyes staring at him. Helen reluctantly agreed to kick little Tom out of the room when Big Tom was there (that is what she called them).
From that point on things only became worse from defecating on the floor to the disappearance of the scratch post to getting his face badly scratched.
Big Tom had to do something and he realized from his struggles that Tom the cat was not the kind to back down. But he realized there was only one way out of this barring their mutual demise.
Tom the cat sensed a new presence in the house, a scent that inspired hatred and fear. He crossed the room skulking in the corners for protection. As he emerged from behind the door he saw his beloved Helen sitting on the couch with a corgi that had stolen his lap. Tom hissed unrepentantly as Helen tried her best to calm him down. In all the commotion big Tom sat there with a big smile on his face for a job well done.
Some points: we’ve veered in completely opposite directions in these stories, probably because the prompt was vague enough to allow that. I like Tamoor’s idea more because of the uniqueness of the slant and the completeness of the story whereas mine describes more of a sort of scene rather than an actual story. One more day to go!