Free short story Robbie and the Ogres now available
Posted on August 15, 2015 (Subscribe to Blog)
I had fun writing this short story. It follows Robbie as he visits the ogres in the west, hoping to enlist some muscle so that Blacknail can put an old crane together. It's a scene from Mountain of Whispers that happened "in the background" while Hal and the rest of the team headed home to Carter.
I always saw ogres as a little dimwitted and clumsy, but I also saw them as gentle giants. I think you'll like these ogres a lot! When Robbie is one, he does well to retain his human intellect until he's rendered stupid by a smile from Lauren, which I think is true with most boys (and men) in love with a pretty girl. It's even worse for him.
The type of crane in the story has always interested me. Anyone who wants to know what a treadmill crane looks like and how it works just needs to watch a video featuring Tony Robinson presenting one of the "worst jobs in history." Cut to exactly 2 minutes in if you want to skip the history and get right to a working demonstration lifting a small car!
- Lifting a small car (6:32 minutes)
- Lifting a stone block (23 seconds)
- Lifting an even heavier stone block (1:59 minutes)
- A double-drummed treadmill (31 seconds)
Treadmill cranes come in all shapes and sizes, but they all do the same thing, and many were used in castle construction. I can easily see a centaur walking around the inside of the wheel and lowering stone blocks into the shaft in the stone quarry. As you might remember from Mountain of Whispers, that shaft led to the elven temple, which the centaurs had built over a decade prior.
I hope you enjoy Robbie and the Ogres. Look for more missing scenes and untold tales in the coming months as I scoot around the timeline and latch onto things I think are worth telling. :-)