Read Eaglethorpe Buxton and the Elven Princess Online

Authors: Wesley Allison

Tags: #adventure, #comedy, #elf, #elves, #fairy tale, #fantasy, #goblins

Eaglethorpe Buxton and the Elven Princess

BOOK: Eaglethorpe Buxton and the Elven Princess
12.41Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

This is a work of fiction. Any resemblance of
characters to actual people, living or dead is purely

Copyright © 2009 by Wesley M. Allison

All rights reserved.

Cover art:

Additional cover art by: Sade

First Edition


Printed in the United States

Eaglethorpe Buxton and the Elven
By Wesley Allison
For John and John and John
Eaglethorpe Buxton and the Elven

(As Told by Eaglethorpe Buxton)

By Wesley Allison
Chapter One: Wherein I do not steal a pie,
but pay a price none-the-less.

There was a pie. There was a pie cooling on
the window ledge. Steam was rising up into the frosty air,
illuminated by the flickering candlelight coming from within the
building. Is there a more welcoming sight? Is there a more
welcoming sight for a traveler from a far land, trudging through
the cold, dark forest on a cold, dark night, waist deep in snow,
frozen to the bone, than the sight of a pie cooling on the window
ledge with steam rising up into the frosty air? You don’t have to
wonder. I can tell you. There is no more welcoming sight that such
a pie. On this night there were sights and sounds and smells, all
nearly as welcoming, and they were arrayed around this particular
pie like the elements of a fine meal might be arrayed around a very
nicely roasted chicken breast. Candlelight flickering through the
shutters casting shadows on the snow, smoke rising from the
chimneys in a quaint small town, the smell of burning wood and the
smell horses just overpowering the smell of pine, the sounds of men
and women singing; all welcoming but not as welcoming as pie. I was
as happy to see that pie as I was to see the little town in which
it cooled on the window ledge.

I should stop and introduce myself. I am
Eaglethorpe Buxton, famed world traveler and story-teller. Of
course you have heard of me, for my tales of the great heroes and
their adventures have been repeated far and wide across the land.
Yes, I am sad to say that many of my stories have been told without
the benefit of my name being attached to them. This is unfortunate
as my appellation, which is to say the name of Buxton and of
Eaglethorpe would add a certain something to the verisimilitude of
a story, which is to say the truthfulness or the believability of
the story. But such is the jealousy of other story-tellers that
they cannot bear to have my name overshadow theirs. In truth I am
probably better known in any case as an adventurer in my own right
than as a teller of the adventures of others. But in any case,
there was a pie.

I had been traveling for through the snowy
forests of Brest, which of course one might associate with a nicely
roasted breast of chicken, but that is not necessarily the case. To
be sure I have had one or two nicely roasted chickens during my
travels in this dark, cold country, as I traveled from one little
hamlet to the next. I would say though that I’ve eaten far more
mutton and beef stew than roasted chicken breast. I suppose this
has to do with the fact that eggs are dear, though I’ve seldom
found an inn that didn’t offer a fried egg of morning. In fact, in
distant Aerithraine, where I was once privileged to spend a
fortnight with the Queen, I have had some of the finest breast of
chicken dinners than any man has ever enjoyed. But notwithstanding
this, there was a pie.

I had trudged through the snow for days,
forced to lead my poor horse Hysteria who had taken lame with a
stone, through drifts as high as my belt. So I was cold and I was
tired. More than this though, I was hungry. And above the smell of
pine and frost and people and horses and smoke, there was the smell
of that pie. It smelled so very good. It smelled of warmth and
happiness and home and my dear old mother. It was a pie for the

I would not steal a pie. I did not steal
this pie. Though I have been most unfairly accused of being a thief
on one or two or sixteen occasions, I have never been convicted of
such a heinous crime, except in Theen where the courts are most
unfairly in control of the guilds, and in Breeria which is ruled by
a tyrant, and one time in Aerithraine when the witnesses were all
liars. So as you can see, I am not one to steal a pie. But being
concerned that the pie might be getting too cold, I reached up to
check the temperature. It was at this moment that I was laid upon
by at least two pairs of rough hands.

“This is a fine welcome for a stranger to
your town,” said I.

They called me varlet and scoundrel and
dastard and pie thief and tossed me bodily into the confines of a
small shack just out behind the structure in which the pie had
rested on the window ledge. I looked around in the darkness. It was
not true darkness to be sure, because the shack was poorly put
together, with wide gaps through which the cold and frosty air
entered with impunity. It struck me immediately that it would not
be too hard work to bust out of this prison, but I waited and put
my eye to one of the cracks to see if my attackers had left and to
see if I could spot what they intended for Hysteria my valiant
steed, which is to say my horse.

The two ruffians who had attacked me were
making their way back to the front of the nearest building and just
beyond them I could see one short fellow attempting to lead
Hysteria away, though she tossed her head unhappily and pulled at
the reigns. I sighed, and could see the steam from my breath
forming a little cloud just beyond the confines of the little

“So,” said a small voice, and I turned to
peer into the darkened corner of the shack. “They have caught
another pie thief.”

Chapter Two: Wherein I become the sole
guardian and protector of an orphan.

“I am not a pie thief,” said I, waiting for
my eyes to adjust to the limited light of the little room. “If
anything, I am a procurer of pies to be paid for at a later time,
which is to say an eater of pies on account.”

“I don’t judge you,” said the little voice
from the dark corner. “After all, am I not incarcerated for the
same crime? It may well have been the same pie that I attempted to
steal earlier in the evening that you tried to…”

“Check for doneness,” I interrupted.


“Taste test.”




“For someone who doesn’t judge, you seem
quite judgmental to me,” I opined. “And if self control did escape
me for a moment, could I be blamed. Here am I, a cold and weary
traveler from a far land, cold to the bone and hungry. And there
sits a pie, and not just any pie, but a pie for the ages, sitting
as if waiting especially for me, on the window ledge.”

“Mistress Gaston is an excellent pie

“I shall have to take your word for that.”
said I, starting to make out the form of a child. “And what is it
they call you, lad?”

“I am called Galfrid.”

“Come out of the corner and let me have a
look at you.”

“Promise me that you won’t hurt me,” said

“All the country knows the name of
Eaglethorpe Buxton and it knows that he is not one to harm children
or ladies, nor old people or the infirm. Rather he is a friend to
those who are in need of a friend and a protector to those who are
in need of a protector and a guardian to those who are in need of a

“So long as it is not a pie that needs
guarding,” said he.

“Pies are something altogether unique. Pies
are special, which is to say they are wonderful, but not rare. No,
indeed they are common, but that does not make them worthless.
Quite the contrary. Life is quite like a pie, at least
in-so-much-as a life lived well is like a pie—warm and delicious on
the inside with a protective crust on the outside. There are places
in the world where pies are worshiped.”


“No what?”

“There is no place in the world where pies
are worshipped.”

“That is not worshipped, but revered as one
might revere the saints.”


“Far to the east of here, in the city of
Bertold, in the land of Holland, they revere pies.”

“No. There is no city of Bertold in Holland
and nowhere east of here do they revere pies.”

“You are a saucy child,” said I. “And if
they do not revere pies east of here, then I should not like to
travel in that direction.”

“So are you implying that you are this
Englethorpe Boxcar and that I therefore have nothing to fear from

“Eaglethorpe, with an A instead of an N, and
Buxton, with an X and a ton, and yes, I am he and you have nothing
to fear. Though to be sure there are plenty who would claim the
name of Eaglethorpe Buxton, with and E not an N and an X and a ton,
because greatness will ever have its imitators.”

“So you might well be an imposter,” said

“You may rest assured that I am not,” said

“But if you were an imposter, would you not
insist that you were not an imposter?”

“You may be sure that I would.”

“Then how can I trust that you are the real
Englethorpe Boxcar?”

“Just look at me!” I exclaimed, throwing my
arms out and giving him a good look.

“Swear that you will not harm me.” said he.
“And furthermore, swear that you will be my protector and guardian
until I can return to my home?”

“How far away do you live?”

“Not far.”
“I swear to be your protector and guardian until you reach your
home, though it be on the far side of creation,” said I. “Now come
closer and let me get the measure of you.”

The lad crept forward until he stepped into
a beam of moonlight shining through a space between the boards of
the shack wall. He was a slight little ragamuffin, with a build
that suggested he had not eaten in some time. He had a dirty face
and wool cap pulled down to his eyes. His clothes were dirty and
torn, but I immediately noticed that his shoes while dirty, seemed
too fine for a ragamuffin such as this. I asked upon them.

“You see, Sir Boxcar, my parents were, um…
cobblers… but they died, leaving me a destitute and lonely orphan
child. These shoes were the only things they left me.”

“May they rest in peace,” said I, whipping
off my cap, which is only proper courtesy to offer, even if one is
only offering it to an orphan. “But on to the situation at hand. I
see that you are a sturdy boy, despite your condition. Why did you
not bust out of this shack? It looks as though it would take no
more than a couple of kicks.”

The lad stared at me with his mouth open,
obviously chagrined that he had not thought of this means of escape
himself. “Yes,” he said at last. “I am a sturdy… boy…. but I think
you will find the shack is sturdier than it looks. It is hammered
together with iron nails.”

BOOK: Eaglethorpe Buxton and the Elven Princess
12.41Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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