Wednesday, September 08, 2010

This week’s prompt at (Friday)Fiction is, to say the least, a little unusual. We have been given three obscure words and asked to use one or more in our piece without first looking up their meanings! I’d never heard any of them before, but I used all three.

1. Periapt. I decided it came from the same root as periscope.
2. Vilipend. Perhaps from vilify, to denigrate or speak ill of.
3. Embrangle. This sounded like a battle to me!

So, here is what I came up with!

He was born with a God given gift. Solomon Hollibon was a periapt. He was often to be seen standing in the middle of a field, head tilted back and his eyes focused on the heavens above. His periaptitude allowed him to see over the distant hills and into the Kingdom of Bolcanion.

Solomon Hollibon was employed by the ruler of the Realm of Casticania to keep a look out for the marauding menaces of Bolcanion who regularly crossed the hills and crept into Casticania with the intention of plundering the poor folk in the outlying settlements. With his rare talent he was able to see them from on high, long before they entered the Realm, thereby allowing the warriors of Casticania sufficient time to thwart their foes' dastardly deeds.

Over time the situation became somewhat more sinister. Messengers were sent to and fro between the nations carrying communications of an increasingly unfriendly nature. The Ruler of the Realm of Casticania decided enough was enough. The malicious and abusive taunts coming from across the hills had become totally unacceptable, and as a result he accused the King of Bolcanion of being a vilipend. He was to cease his emissary activities forthwith , or face the consequences. He refused to comply, and the resulting embrangle between the Warriors of Casticania and the Bolcanion Militia was bloody and hard-fought.

Solomon Hollibon, being a periapt , had a bird’s eye view of what was happening and managed to make his escape in time not to have become embroiled in the hostilities. He made for the Principality of Santigonia. His arrival was timely as it was the first nation in the known world to be piloting a form of air travel. Today he can be found standing in the middle of Santigonia Airport, a megaphone in one hand, head tilted back and his eyes staring skyward. From there he sees high above the clouds, performing his job as the Principalities’ first Air Traffic Controller.

Ok, I’ve now looked them up in the OED!
1. Perpiapt. a charm worn to protect the wearer from harm.
2. Vilipend. I was spot on! To treat someone with contempt.
3. Embrangle. Not recognised! Nearest I found was Embryonal, in the process of development!


  1. I've never heard of those words either. You did well.

  2. Embrangle was similar to how you used it in the story actually, it put me in mind of the words entangle and embroil. I loved the idea of Solomon's abilities, and the ending is great!

  3. Interesting play. It's funny seeing how people use these words in their stories.
    Yours made me feel like I was reading a part of the Dark Tower series (Wolves of the Calla) where they come down from the mountain to collect the children. Eerie.

  4. That was great, although I feel a bit sorry for Simon, air traffic controller is not the job for me.

  5. Brave use of the mystery words. An interesting tale of far off places.

  6. Well done, and I like to think of your MC as a kind of amulet, too. I went with a similar breakdown of periapt, completely wrong. I thought peri (meaning outside like perimeter or periscope) and apt (ability).

    Nice story!

  7. lovely,
    unexpected and fun piece.

  8. lovely,
    unexpected and fun piece.

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