Mad Modesty-Da Great Goblin Rebellion-Part 38

Meanwhile, in the Outer Realms…

Gibbering Mouths bloomed in shades of purple and orange across the Plains of Pandemonium, each screaming in their own unique way. The dissolving river surged by, its bright green acid bubbling and steaming into the air. The sky was sickly yellow punctuated with spiky, azure clouds that shot lightning out in an irregular rhythm. All in all, a picture-perfect day in the Outer Realms.

For those who were not native to this dimension, it looked like someone had invented rainbow sherbet, and eaten WAY too much of it. Then continually vomited, coating the landscape. This is the nicest way it can be described without beginning to erode sanity.

Montar and Guuuunooook hovered just above the reach of the Gibbering Mouths.

“I have to say, I’m very, very excited,” said Guuuunooook out of seven of their eleven mouths.

“Oh, me too!” replied Montar, “An audience with their tentacular majesty is cool!”

“So very cool!”

“Do you think we’ll be rewarded?” mused Montar.

“I mean, I probably will. After all, I did come up with the idea for this invasion,” Guuuunooook stated with several, self-satisfied smirks.

“I recall it was a group effort,” said Montar, perhaps a little too quickly.

“In the way that it was totally my idea, and you sort of helped.”

Zipping ahead Montar stopped and glowered.

“At the end of the day, when this started, we were the only Abominations in the Land. Now we’re about to overrun that horrible, horrible place and make it something to be proud of. I think there’s credit enough to go around.”

Guuuunooook paused to ponder this.

“Here’s the thing. Is there?”

Montar fantasized about consuming this less-than-generous partner and taking all the credit for themselves. On the surface, it was a perfect plan with one small hitch. If they lost, they would be the one consumed and forgotten. Perhaps some credit was better than no credit. After all, they could betray Guuuunooook later.

“Fine…”

All of Guuuunooook’s mouths smiled with their jagged teeth and then continued to the Collapsing Palace, home of the Their Mad Tentacular Majesty, The Orange Prince.

For purposes of description, the Collapsing Palace might be described as a massive city of intricate architecture that keeps folding on itself. Gazing upon it is to go insane. Unless you’re already insane, then it’s just super difficult to find your way around.

Fortunately, Montar and Guuuunooook were both mad by the standards of most realms. In that, they could make their way to the throne room of The Orange Prince. How it affected the rest of their existences, that might be debated at length. But not by us.

After navigating, a series of non-euclidian, stomach-churning, corridors, Montar and Guuuunooook were deposited before The Orange Prince. What does The Orange Prince look like? Yikes. I know this has become a bit repetitive. Just one peek would melt your mind and explode your eyes. That is the best-case scenario. Let’s just skip the description and take the horror as read, shall we?

Both Abominations prostrated themselves before their liege. The Maw of The Orange Prince stood before the aforementioned Royal Monster. They resembled a cross between a crab and a hamster if they were made of rotting iron and gelatin.

“Speak,” the Maw ordered in a high-pitched wheezing voice.

“Magnificent majesty, we have news of the war,” said Montar.

“I have more news, actually,” interjected Guuuunooook.

For a moment, all that could be heard was the very wet, labored breathing of The Orange Prince.

“Are you going to share this news or do we have to guess?” asked the Maw.

“The hideous inhabitants of the Land are ripe for the picking. Their petty squabbles will prove their undoing once you join the battle my most irregular Prince,” quickly said Guuuunooook.

“Indeed,” said the Maw with a lack of inflection that also seemed to question the truth of that statement.

Montar knew that wasn’t true. There was an organized resistance. He could call Guuuunooook out or…

“Guuuunooook is the authority on this, my Prince. I have no reason to doubt their word,” added Montar.

“So, you can assure The Orange Prince victory?” queried the Maw, “With no doubt.”

Guuuunooook nodded and said, “If my compatriot has done their job.”

“I have followed your orders to the letter, any credit or failure is beyond my influence.”

“Montar is too modest,” insisted Guuuunooook.
“Not at all, I’m the correct amount of modest.”

The Maw screeched and Montar and Guuuunooook shuddered. Even for Abominations, it was an unpleasant sound. They each ground their multiple sets of teeth.

“Do you two think that The Orange Prince has time to waste?” inquired the Maw.

While The Orange Prince was effectively immortal, neither Montar nor Guuuunooook felt this was the time to bring that up. Instead, both said, “No, of course not.”

“So, let me ask you once more. Can you assure The Orange Prince victory? If you cannot, the punishment will be unending. If you fail, the punishment will still be unending.”

Now if the Abominations of the Outer Realms had been really paying attention to the goings on back in the Land, they might have picked up a few managerial pointers. Such as, when offering an alternative to punishment, more punishment may not be the way to go.

There is a time and place for speaking truth to power. It is an act of pure bravery, given power often has a complicated relationship with veracity. Many beings have given their lives in the act but have changed the course of history in doing so.

This was not one of those moments. Both Montar and Guuuunooook were the perfect mix of pragmatic and cowardly so in the interest of avoiding immediate punishment, they assured the Maw that victory was completely and utterly assured. Just to make sure they sold it, they both did an embarrassing amount of grovelling.

The Maw clapped their claws, making an atonal gong sound, and Montar and Guuuunooook fell silent.

“The time for groveling is over. The time for victory approaches. In between, The Orange Prince will have a light supper of damned souls.”

The two Abominations said nothing.

“That means get out and get things going,” the Maw pointed out with exasperation.

“Yes, right, of course,” they both said as they exited.

In the back of their minds, the possibility of defeat nibbled at their confidence. But that thought was smothered by the knowledge that they could blame each other for any failure. Each of them thought themselves extremely clever. Each was half right.

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