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Humor An Unaccountable Problem


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I wrote this story over two years ago for this site's "500 Word Fanfic Challenge". I had always meant to post it in it's own thread, but to be honest, totally forgot!




An Unaccountable Problem
By Honey Moon AKA cuteycindyhoney

    “Who?” the voice insisted as Spike wearily opened his eyes. “Who?”
    “Spike the Dragon.” He muttered sleepily as rolled over. “Spike the SLEEPY dragon!”
    “WHO!” Strong talons gripped the blanket covering the slumbering dragon, and gave a tug.
    With a sharp spin, Spike tumbled from his snug bed onto the wooden floorboards. “Owlicious, what gives?” he protested while rubbing his tail. “It’s still night time! I thought you were supposed to assist Twilight while I was sleeping!”
    The owl gave a final hoot, and with a flap of his wings headed down from the loft into the library proper.
    Spike shook his head. He got up and headed for the ladder. Was something wrong? When he went to his nice soft beddy-bye, Twilight had been engrossed in her studies, trying to condense the true meaning of friendship into five hundred words or less. One look told him that things weren’t going awfully well for his scholarly friend.
    The purple unicorn looked up when she heard a sound. “Oh Spike! This is terrible! How can I summarize the magic of friendship in fewer than five hundred words? The Princess is going to be so disappointed in me! Who knows what her punishment would be for such a failure!”
    “WHO?” the owl hooted.
    “Exactly!” Twilight buried her face in the pile of crumpled scrolls on her desk. “What if she really sends me to magic kindergarten this time?” She looked up and let out a sad little moan. “What will happen then?”
    Spike looked at his beloved friend and sighed. Twilight’s eyes were rather bloodshot, and had taken on a sort of wild appearance. Her usually neat and tidy mane was in a distinct frazzle. This looked like a bad one! “Twilight, calm down! I’m pretty sure the princess was only teasing when she suggested a word limit. You do tend to get long winded when you write, after all.”
    “I do not!” The exasperated pony began trotting around the room. “I just carefully explain each and every point. I must be sure the reader understands!”
    Spike climbed onto the desk and looked at one of the scrolls. “This looks okay. How many words is it?”
    Twilight cringed. “Five hundred and twelve! Oh Spike! What if the Princess dismisses me from my post as librarian in Ponyville? What if I never see my friends again?”
    Spike picked up the discarded quill, and began rapidly reading over the document. “It is apparent…That is why…You will note…” The dragon clicked his tongue and dipped the quill into the ink.
    “Spike, what are you doing?” cried Twilight. She closed her eyes and concentrated. In a burst of magic she teleported six feet, and arrived at the desk a fraction of a second sooner then if she had just walked. “That’s my best attempt! Why are you marking it all up?”
    Spike smiled and held up the corrected document. “Five hundred words exactly, not counting the title and author line! Twilight, you really should use contractions!”



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Not bad, especially considering the size limit.  The late Frederick Brown (Scifi writer) used to be a master of the short short. Back in the 1930s some magazines paid 1/2 cent per word & no pulp paid over a penny.  He used to joke that sometimes the postage would cost more than he would earn for the story.

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