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Scuttlebutt Brightly and the Creeper’s Fuse, Book 1: The Adventurer From Bilge

 

Scuttlebutt Brightly and the Creeper’s Fuse, Book 1: The Adventurer From Bilgewater

 

 

 

Copyright 2016 Mark Mulle

Published by Mark Mulle at Shakespir

 

 

 

 

Shakespir Edition License Notes

This ebook is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This ebook may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each recipient. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your enjoyment only, then please return to Shakespir.com or your favorite retailer and purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.

 

 

 

Author’s Note

This short story is for your reading pleasure. The characters in this “Minecraft Adventure Series” such as Steve, Endermen or Herobrine…etc are based on the Minecraft Game coming from Minecraft ®/TM & © 2009-2013 Mojang / Notch

 

 

 

 

 

 

Table of Contents

Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

Chapter Four

Chapter Five

Chapter Six

Chapter Seven

Chapter Eight

Chapter Nine

Chapter Ten

Chapter Eleven

Chapter Twelve

Chapter Thirteen

Chapter Fourteen

Chapter Fifteen

Chapter Sixteen

Chapter Seventeen

About the Author

Other books by this Author

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter One

Well done. You’ve started to read this book. That’s a good sign, reader. Settle down. I’m sure we’re going to become firm friends by the end of this.

Perhaps introductions are in order. My name is Scuttlebutt Brightly. Perhaps you’ve heard of me? No? Well you have now. I’m known throughout Minecraftia as the most cunning, courageous, and charming renegade ever to call himself an adventurer. However, dear reader, I’ll let you in on a secret. I am none of these. I am, quite frankly, as cowardly as a skeleton at sunrise and as weasly as the greasiest slime. However, I’m also as sneaky as a Creeper in slippers.

So settle in, reader, and I’ll tell you the story of my adventure to Creeper’s Fuse. The time I met with quite a colorful bunch of adventurers, and went on a perilous quest to the far reaches of the earth and faced dangers – the likes of which you can’t possibly imagine. I know, that doesn’t sound like the cowardly, fraidy-cat I just described, does it? Well let me tell you the story, friend. And I promise that every word I say is the truth. No lies or tricks with you, dear reader, only the honest facts.

The story of Creeper’s Fuse began, rather curiously, with a chicken. I’d been spending some time around the town of Bilgewater, a busy seaside port where all manners of unsavory folks gather to trade stories, goods, and (more often than not) lie through their teeth about the brave adventures they’ve had. My kind of place.

I got friendly with an innkeeper there, a fellow by the name of Steerpike. Steerpike ran The Mossy Cobble Inn with a kind face and a warm smile. All the warmer, once you’d paid him for a room. Only he was having some trouble. His prized chicken, Betsy, had gone missing. Chased off by wolves, he said. Me, being the upright noble hero that I am, volunteered to track the chicken down. And, naturally, claim a handsome reward for my trouble.

So it was there I found myself wandering over the hills north of Bilgewater. Crying out “Betsy!” or “Where are you? You miserable sack of feathers!” and other such things. I was so busy searching for the chicken, I didn’t notice that the sun was going down.

I was standing by some beech trees, wondering how a chicken could be worth all this trouble, when it happened. Somebody hidden behind the trees yelled “Duck!”

“I’m not looking for a duck,” I said, irritated, “I’m looking for a chicken.”

“No! Get down!”

A figure came charging out of the woods towards me. My stomach did a somersault. A creeper. Those explosive devils that haunt every Minecraftian’s nightmares. His eyes black as obsidian, and his face a hideous snarl.

The creeper crashed into me, sending me toppling backwards. Seconds later, an arrow flew through the air. Had the creeper not pushed me, it would have hit me square in the head. Instead it slammed harmlessly into a tree with an ominous twang.

The creeper turned towards the source of the arrow. A pair of skeleton archers, hiding in the shadows. It stared at them with those fearsome eyes, sizzling quietly. Then (and I promise you, reader, every word of this is true) the creeper began to speak! A soft, calm voice that sounded like rustling leaves.

“Get out of here,” hissed the creeper, “Or I’ll blast you into pieces and make a xylophone out of your ribs.”

Skeletons are not the smartest of creatures (they have no brains, you see). But even they understand that a talking creeper is quite unusual. The skeletons didn’t need telling twice. They turned tail and ran, disappearing into the forest.

Now as I said before, despite my dashing good looks and heroic charm, I am not a brave man. Quite the reverse. So I’ll be honest, when the talking creeper looked at me, I screamed like a squealing pig.

“Pull yourself together!” said the creeper, “Do you want more of them to come?”

“You…you…you can talk?”

“Yes, I know,” said the creeper. He sighed, “Relax friend, I’m not going to explode. I promise.”

“How can you be sure?”

“We creepers only explode when we’re scared,” he said, with something that might have been a smile, “And I’m not the one who’s shaking.”

I clambered to my feet. A talking creeper? Whoever heard of such a thing? Not only that, but a creeper who’d saved my life. And I still hadn’t found that chicken. This was too much for one day.

“My name is Soot,” said the creeper, “I’d offer to shake your hand, but…”

“You don’t have hands, I understand.” I tried a hearty laugh, “Sorry I, uh, panicked a little bit back there. You know how it is. Creepers don’t normally stop to say hello before going the full ka-blam, am I right? I’ve had too many close calls recently. I’ve just got back from the Driftwood Islands, they’re crawling with the little green devils…oh, uh, no offense.”

“None taken,” said Soot. His eyes had lit up, “Did you say The Driftwood Islands?”

“That’s right,” I said, “Just come back from a daring voyage over the stormy seas.” That was mostly true. Only the seas had actually been nice and calm, and the mission wasn’t really very dangerous – I’d gone to deliver wheat to the islanders.

Soot gave that sort-of-smile again, “Are you looking for another job?”

“Is the pay good?”

“Very good. What did you say your name was?”

“Scuttlebutt Brightly.”

“Alright Mr. Brightly, listen up. You get me inside Bilgewater, and I can offer you a job that’ll make you rich beyond your wildest dreams.”

I’ll admit, I had my doubts. It was, after all, a job offer from a talking creeper. Can’t say I was comfortable with the idea of going on a quest with a fellow who might explode if he ever got frightened.

But there’s something you’ll soon learn about Scuttlebutt Brightly. I might be as chicken as a creeper in cat-country, but there’s very little that my love of gold won’t overcome.

 

 

Chapter Two

Two hours later I returned to The Mossy Cobble Inn with a chicken in tow.

“Oh, Mr. Brightly!” Steerpike beamed, “You’ve found my Betsy! Thank you, Mr. Brightly, thank you!”

“You’re very welcome,” I beamed.

“Where did you find her?”

“In the hills just to the north. I had to fight off a horde of skeletons for her,” I lied. In fact, I still had no idea where the real Betsy had gone. I’d bought this chicken down in the market. A bargain at three ingots.

“You’re a brave man, Mr. Brightly,” said Steerpike, “However can I repay you?”

“Well,” I coughed, “A few gold ingots would be…”

Steerpike laughed, “Oh, I don’t have any gold.”

“No gold?!”

“No,” he smiled, “I’ll cook you some porkchops as a thank you.”

“Yes,” I said slowly, “Porkchops. Fine.”

Steerpike beamed, “Florabel! Come see this, Mr Brightly has found Betsy for us.”

Florabel was Steerpike’s daughter, who worked as a barmaid in the inn. Pretty girl I’d always thought, with long blonde hair and eyes like fresh emeralds. But she was clever too. That could be a problem.

Florabel took one look and shook her head, “That’s not Betsy.”

“What?” scoffed Steerpike, “Don’t be silly, child. Of course it’s Betsy.”

“That’s not even a chicken,” said Florabel, “That’s a duck, look!”

“Quack,” said the chicken.

“Ah…” I said, “Well, uh…ducks lay eggs too you know. Bigger ones, better than chickens do.”

“They do not!” said Florabel.

“They do,” I lied, “You ask my opinion, Steerpike, you’re better off with this fellow than you are with Betsy anyways.”

“Quack!” agreed the chicken.

“Maybe you’re right,” nodded Steerpike, ignoring his daughter. He was almost too easy to persuade. If you told Steerpike the sky was green he’d say he’d always thought so.

“That’s rubbish,” said Florabel. “You might as well say that cows can race mine-carts. Or Creepers can dance the tango!”

“By the way,” I said to Steerpike, before Florabel could say anymore, “I don’t suppose you’ve seen some friends of mine today, have you? A tall fellow with a diamond sword, and a man in a red coat?”

“Those two?” said Steerpike with a trademark bartender’s frown, “I saw them, yeah. Strange looking pair. They went upstairs, rented out room four.”

“Thanks friend.”

“Quack!” said the chicken.

I left Steerpike and Florabel to argue over the chicken. Or the duck, it didn’t matter. She’d served her purpose, and distracted the pair for just long enough for me to head over to the tavern’s back door where, as we’d planned, Soot was waiting.

“The coast is clear?” asked Soot.

“As planned.”

“What about Professor Fairweather and Mr. Cantankerous?”

“Upstairs, room four,” I said.

“Excellent,” said Soot. He crept towards the tavern stairs. Being a creeper, he was very good at it. “Follow me, Mr. Brightly. I suppose you’ll be wondering what this is all about.”

 

Chapter Three

When we reached room four, Soot paused at the door. He turned to me, “Uh, Mr. Brightly, could I ask another favor?”

“What?”

“Could you knock on the door for me please?”

“Certainly.”

I gave the door a polite tap with my fist. Soot jittered from side-to-side impatiently. It must be awfully irritating, having no hands.

“Who’s there?” a gruff voice asked, “What do you want?”

“Lapis Lazuli can be used to dye things blue,” said Soot.

A pause. “I know,” said the voice, “Why are you telling me?”

“Ernest, that’s the password!” said another voice, this one smart like a school-teacher. “It means it’s Soot.”

“We have a password now?”

“Open the door!”

The door swung open. Room four looked like any room at an inn might look. Made of wood planks with a woollen bed and a small chest for storage. Inside were Soot’s two companions. A towering fellow with a diamond sword and fearsome scowl, and a bookish man with glasses and a red coat. Both stared at me as we entered the room.

“Who’s this fella?” asked the gruff one. He shut the door behind us at once. We couldn’t have some passer-by notice a creeper in the inn, could we? Innkeepers don’t take kindly to creepers.

“This is Mr. Brightly,” said Soot. “I met him on my way here. He’s an adventurer, he knows the way to the Driftwood Islands. He’ll be our guide.”

The gruff one looked me up and down, “Aren’t you a bit small for an adventurer?”

“All the better for death-defying jumps,” I grinned. And all the better for hiding, too.

“Mr. Brightly,” said Soot, turning to me, “These are my companions,” he nodded to the gruff fellow. “This is Ernest Cantankerous, an adventurer like yourself.”

“A fellow rogue,” I smiled. Ernest did not. It was like his mouth was stuck in frown position.

“And this is Professor Dinglebert Fairweather, from the Stonewall Academy.”

“Dandelioned to meet you, Mr. Brightly,” he smiled, “Positively dandelioned.”

“Don’t you mean delighted?” I asked.

“Delighted, yes,” said The Professor, “That’s cricket.”

“The Professor has malapropism,” explained Soot, “He has problems with long words.”

“So,” I said, as brash and brazen as possible, “You wish to travel to the Driftwood Islands, yes? Why, may I ask? There’s nothing there but palm trees and angry creepers.”

“I wasn’t always like this,” said Soot. “I used to be an ordinary creeper, just like any other. But I was found by a sorceress. One with powers unlike any normal human. Using her words, she gave me the power to speak and think.”

“I see,” I said. Sorcerers and magic were fairy stories to me back then, but I couldn’t deny what my eyes were seeing. If the talking Creeper was real, then perhaps there was some truth in this sorceress too.

“We’ve heard that someone similar now lives in the Driftwood Islands. On the island known as Creeper’s Fuse,” said Professor Fairweather, “Someone with spatula powers.”

“Spectacular,” Ernest corrected with a grunt.

“Indeed,” said Fairweather, “And not only that,the reports also say this sorcerer has collected a vast Trevor!”

“He means treasure,” said Soot.

My ears perked up, “Treasure?”

“Yes,” said Soot. “Our quest is a simple one, Mr. Brightly. I wish to go and find this sorceress.”

“What for?”

“That’s not important,” the Creeper said. “You will guide myself and Professor Fairweather to Creeper’s Fuse, to talk with this sorceress. Ernest will act as our bodyguard. In return, the pair of you may take your fill of any treasure we find.”

I’ll admit, I had my doubts that day. Could I really work for a Creeper? It’d be dangerous, a trip to Creeper’s Fuse. There’d be many perils to face. But then, on the other hand, treasure? Lots of treasure, and all I’d have to do is take these folks to the island.

“Alright, Mr. Soot,” I said with my best scoundrel’s smirk, “You’ve got yourself a guide.”

“Fantasmic,” said Fairweather.

 

Chapter Four

I’ll also tell you, dear reader, what happened that evening when I left The Mossy Cobble Inn. This was many hours later, after Steerpike and Florabel had cooked me some tasty pork chops for bringing home Betsy (or at least, her duck imposter).

As I wandered my way home, to the hut on the edge of town where I kept my things, I caught sight of two figures in the alley beside the inn. I just caught a snippet of their conversation as I walked past. At the time, I didn’t give it a second of thought.

“That’s cricket. We set off for the island tomorrow at dawn. We’ve made all the necessary prepositions.”

This speaker, by his voice and contrary turns of phrase, I recognized as Professor Fairweather.

“Gr8,” said the second voice, “Ill cya ther. Gd 1.”

This second fellow sounded very strange. It was like his words were squashed together, like he didn’t have time to talk normally. I’d never heard anything like it.

“Rembrandt our deal,” said Fairweather.

“Rembrandt?” the other one repeated, “Wot u mean?”

“Don’t forget.”

“Ah. Kk. Chat laterz.”

The Professor walked out of the alley, and bumped straight into me. He yelped in surprise, nearly jumping out of his skin.

“Relax, Professor. It’s only me.”

“Brightly,” he sighed, “You terabyte me.”

“Terrified?”

“Extractly.”

“Sorry,” I said, “I was just walking home.”

“All ready for our little quest tomorrow?” said The Professor. “You say you’ve been to Creeper’s Fuse before?”

“I’ve been to the Driftwood Islands,” I said. “I’ve only passed Creeper’s Fuse. But I know where it is. It’s easy to spot. There’s a giant statue of a creeper on the north side, taller than any tower I’ve ever seen.”

“I’ve heard the same,” said The Professor, “I’ve heard it’s an exact replication. Probably even explains if you fry-cook it.”

I stared blankly, “Pardon?”

The Professor concentrated harder, “I mean…explodes if you frighten it. Truly a wonder of entertaining.”

“Engineering.”

“Yes. I look forward to seeing it. Any who, good-nod Mr. Brightly.”

“Good-nod,” I copied as The Professor returned to the inn. Strange fellow, I thought, but harmless enough. I carried on walking, off towards my hut.

However, as I thought about it on my way home, I did think it was odd. The Professor had come out of the alley alone. But that alley was a dead end. Either his strange-sounding friend had stayed hidden in the alley, or he had disappeared into thin air.

Chapter Five

We set off at dawn the next day. Our route, set out by me, was a simple one. We’d ride overland along The Stony Shore for five days until we reached Point’s End. From there we’d make our way by boat across the sea to the Driftwood Islands, and on to Creeper’s Fuse. A journey of maybe seven days.

It was slow going out of Bilgewater. Myself, Ernest, and The Professor rode horses, but we couldn’t get Soot to do the same. The horses all panicked as soon as he came near. Eventually I had the idea to sit him on a pig instead, and that seemed to work better. But still, it was slow-going. They say that many years ago we humans used to ride pigs, but you can see why we switched to horses once we got the chance. Pigs are dreadful mounts – they simply refuse to go in a straight line.

“Left!” Soot hollered. “Left you insufferable hunk of pork! Go left!”

“Oink,” the pig protested, quite happy heading right.

“Pull the reins,” The Professor suggested.

“With what?!” asked Soot, wiggling his tiny feet.

“This is no good,” I said. “At this rate, it’ll take us weeks to reach Point’s End.”

“Well if we…” The Professor began.

“Shush,” Ernest interrupted. The big man had been quiet all morning, keeping to himself at the back of our column. But now his eyes had come alive, darting from side to side like jittery jellyfish. He slowly drew his diamond sword.

“What’s wrong?” I asked.

“We’re being followed,” said Ernest. “Over there in those trees.”

We all stood still as statues as Ernest marched towards the trees. In those moments, reader, my mind raced. What could be following us in these woods? Skeletons? Zombies? The foulest creatures of The Nether? I feared my worst nightmares hiding behind that tree, just waiting to pounce. So you can imagine my surprise when Ernest yelled, “Show yourself!” and a young girl stepped into view instead.

The Professor frowned, “How curative. A girl.”

“Who are you?” Ernest demanded, brandishing his sword.

“I know who she is,” I said. I walked over to stand alongside Ernest, and gestured to him to lower his sword. “Her name is Florabel. She was the barmaid back at the inn.”

“You?” said The Professor, recognizing her, “What in generation are you doing here?”

“I followed you,” said Florabel. She walked towards Soot. Ernest barred her path, and she fixed him a glare so fearsome that even the big man flinched. “I came to warn you not to trust him.” Florabel pointed directly at me.

“What’s the meaning of this?” I asked, though I had a feeling I knew.

“Scuttlebutt Brightly is a liar and a cheat,” said Florabel. “He’s done nothing but lie through his teeth since the moment he set foot in our inn. Look…” she gave a sharp whistle, like a summons.

“Quack!” The duck came scurrying out from the woods to Florabel’s side.

“A duck?” said Soot.

“Brightly tried to trick my father, told us this was our prized chicken and took five porkchops as a reward. But I checked down at the market. You bought her yesterday, you didn’t find her. She’s not even a chicken.”

“Anyone can make a mistake,” I shrugged.

“Mr. Brightly is taking us to Creeper’s Fuse,” said Soot. “He’s given us his word.”

“He’s probably never even been to Creeper’s Fuse,” said Florabel. She didn’t seem the least bit affected by the sight of a talking creeper riding a pig. I suppose once you’ve worked in a tavern for long enough, nothing really surprises you anymore.

“I have!” I insisted. For once, it was the truth.

“Fine,” said Florabel. “But I’m coming with you. I’m not letting you out of my sight. You, sir, owe me a prized chicken and five porkchops.”

She had spirit, this girl. More fiery than a ghast with hiccups. Unfortunately, I was on the receiving end of that spirit, and let me tell you, that’s not a pleasant place to be.

“Listen, Mr. Soot,” I said, as charming as I could, “this expedition of ours is dangerous. It’s not a place for a defenseless young woman to…”

“I can take care of myself,” said Florabel, drawing a bow. It shimmered slightly, like someone had put a spell on it.

“There’s still the constipation of the pig,” The Professor pointed out.

Florabel frowned.

“He means complication,” I said. “We can’t get the pig to go straight.”

“Oh,” said Florabel, “here, let me.”Florabel approached the pig and slipped something from her pocket. A carrot. She dangled it in front of the pig and it stared, transfixed.

“Hey little guy,” said Florabel. “You want this nice juicy carrot? Do you? Then come get it.”

Florabel stepped backwards. The pig followed, eyes fixed on the carrot. Florabel kept going and the pig kept following. In a straight line.

“Splendabulous,” said The Professor.

Even I had to admit it was a clever trick. It’s well known that pigs love nothing quite so much as carrots. He’d follow that thing to The Far Lands and back so long as it was held in front of his nose.

“Very well,” said Soot, giving the sort of wide grin that only a Creeper can, “welcome to our company, Miss Florabel.”

 

Chapter Six

Our journey along the shore was uneventful and, thanks to Florabel’s trick with the carrot, it was swift. We rode for four days, with no problems but rain and the occasional rattling skeleton. On the fifth day we reached Point’s End, a town much like Bilgewater. The same look, the same sounds, and the same awful fish smell.

It was getting late when we arrived. We decided it was best to get a good night’s sleep and set off at sunrise. Ernest also made the point that it was a bad idea to go into the heart of the city. Even with all of us around him, the sight of a Creeper inside the city walls would turn a few heads. Might even cause a panic. So instead, we settled in to an inn just on the edge of town, The Broken Arrow Inn. We traded our horses and the pig for a meal and some beds, and settled in for the night.

“Quack!” went the duck.

“Get off,” I yelled, kicking at the creature as it scurried about the inn. “This is my dinner! Find your own.”

“Leave Mildred alone,” said Florabel. The duck ran over to her and she began to pet it.

“Mildred?” grunted Ernest. He was sitting by the fireplace sharpening his sword. “That thing has a name now?”

“I thought it was about time,” said Florabel. “The Professor suggested Mildred.”

“Name of my second cousin,” said Fairweather. He was sitting nearby too, his nose in a book. “Quite a beautificous name, wouldn’t you agree?”

“It’s a dumb name,” grunted Ernest. “My second cousin’s name is Hilda, now there’s a tough name.”

“Why is she still following us?” I asked. “Shouldn’t she have fluttered away by now?”

“She’s homed,” said Florabel. “She thinks we’re her family.”

“Adorable,” grunted Ernest, as cheerful as a sunbathing zombie.

I finished my porkchop with a grin. It’s always good to have a hearty meal before setting out on an adventure, I’ve always said. Keep your strength up. You never know when you’ll have to run for your life.

“Where’s our sizzling green friend,” I asked.

“Soot is upstairs,” said The Professor, “waiting on his dinner.”

“What do Creepers even eat?”

“Fear.”

Florabel rolled her eyes, “I’ll go talk to him, see what he wants. Keep an eye on Mildred.”

The girl made her way upstairs, leaving myself, Fairweather, Ernest, and the duck alone in the inn. Everyone else must have been staying further inside the town, as it was virtually deserted out here.

I looked around. As you may have noticed, Scuttlebutt Brightly is quite a talkative fellow. But The Professor was sunken into his book, and Mildred the duck was unlikely to be good conversation. So I decided to wander towards the fireplace where Ernest was sitting with his sword.

“You want something, Brightly?” he asked.

“Just a chat.”

“What for?”

I shrugged, “We’re companions now. We’ve been on the road together for almost a week, and we’ve barely spoken a word. Let’s talk, tell me about yourself. Come on Ernest, don’t be shy. Do you prefer Ernest, by the way, or are you more of an Ernie?”

“Ernest,” he said. There was a pause before the big man spoke again. “And what about you? A hero, adventurer eh? You seem a bit jumpy for the swashbuckling type.”

“I’m just a cautious fellow,” I said, flashing a rapscallion’s grin.

“What about the girl?” said Ernest. “She said you were a liar and a coward. What d’you say to that?”

“So enough about me,” I said quickly, “What about you. You an adventurer too? Sword-for-hire, death-or-glory, treasure-hunter type, eh?”

“Hardly,” Ernest snorted.

“So what, you’re not doing this for the treasure? Because if you don’t want it I’d be happy to…”

“I need that treasure for a noble purpose,” said Ernest.

“Yeah?”

“To reclaim my kingdom. I am Ernest Cantankerous, rightful king of Wintertide.”

I scoffed. You must understand, dear reader, that the man who sat before me looked no more like a king than I did a squid.

“It’s true!” Ernest insisted. “Only before I was crowned, an enchantress came to our castle. She took control of my kingdom and my people and forced me into exile. But once we find this treasure, I’ll have the means to return home and reclaim my kingdom for myself.”

“Likely story,” I chuckled. “If I had a kingdom like that…”

“Hey, Brightly?”

I turned. Florabel was standing by the stairs, looking sour. Like her evening had just fallen into a puddle.

“Yes?”

“Mr. Soot wants to see you,” she said, “upstairs. I’m going to make him some mushroom stew.”

“Mushroom stew? Is that what creepers eat?”

“Apparently creepers like porkchops just like anyone else. But Soot is a vegetarian.”

 

Chapter Seven

Soot was waiting in one of the rooms. We’d decided it was safer to keep him hidden away up there, where no strangers could catch sight of him. As I’d demonstrated so well at our first meeting, folks tend to panic at the first sign of a creeper.

“Brightly,” he said brightly, “come in.”

“Please,” I said, “call me Scuttlebutt.”

“Is that your real name?”

“Oh no. My real name is Bernard. But that doesn’t sound very dashing, does it? Brave and brazen Bernard, who’d want to read about that?”

“So you chose Scuttlebutt?”

“It’s pirate talk for gossip,” I explained. “I’m quite a talkative fellow. Seemed like a good name at the time.”

“I see,” said Soot. He shifted about on his tiny feet. Like he knew what he wanted to say, but didn’t know which words to choose. Finally he said, “Listen Scuttlebutt. I feel that I owe you an explanation. We’ve been traveling together for almost a week. You’ve been true to your word about taking us to the Driftwood Islands. Even if Florabel doesn’t trust you, I feel it’s fair for you to know what this is all about.”

“Ok,” I said, “tell me, Soot. You want to go and find this sorceress who gave you the ability to speak and think. Why?”

“Because I want to ask if they can do the same for all my fellow creepers,” said Soot.

That wasn’t the answer I’d expected. I assumed Soot would ask for power or wealth. Maybe for some hands, or even ask to be turned into a human. But not this. So all I could manage to say was, “What for?”

“To stop the fighting,” said Soot, “More and more creepers are flooding into the human lands, and it’s causing tension. But despite what you may think Scuttlebutt, creepers are not evil. We’re frightened. We scare easily, and nothing scares us more than finding giant new buildings where we used to live. We can’t build you see, we find buildings magical and terrifying.”

“So you blow them up?” I said.

“Unfortunately yes,” said Soot, “but only because that’s all we can do. But don’t you see? If there was an alternative? If all of us could talk, like I can, maybe we could find a peaceful solution. You could explain that blowing up buildings doesn’t solve problems and we could ask you not to build on our homelands. We might be able to stop creepers and humans from fighting each other, before it’s too late.”

“Do the others know this?” I asked.

“They do now,” said Soot.

I had so much I wanted to ask. Could this really work? Creepers and humans had been enemies since the dawn of time, could there really be a way to stop this? What on earth had I gotten myself into? However, the question I actually asked was, “And what about the treasure?”

Soot never got the chance to answer, because at that moment we were interrupted by an ear-splitting bang.

My first panicked thought was that Soot had exploded. But this wasn’t so; he was still standing opposite me, looking towards the window. I followed his gaze, and gave a girlish scream.

There was a man standing at the window. The glass was gone; he must have broken it. He was dressed in black leather, and his face was hidden under a large top hat. In his hand was an L-shaped device, smoking at one end.

“Outta weh m8!” he barked. “Gimme da creepr!”

That strange voice again. Like in the alleyway back in Bilgewater.

“Bakk off m8!” he yelled again, “or I pwn u!”

My legs shook like jellyfish. It took all the courage I could scrape up for me to say, “I beg your pardon?”

Another loud bang rocked the room. And I tell you something extraordinary, reader. The bang came from the L-shaped device. I saw it spark like an explosive just as it made the noise. I’d never seen a thing like it.

Behind me Soot was sizzling like a fried egg, doing his best to stay calm.

“I cownt 3,” the intruder yelled to me. “1, 2…”

The door to our room swung open. Ernest, Florabel, and The Professor appeared at the doorway, weapons held up. From behind them, Mildred the duck fluttered into the room. She flew straight into my face, and squawked an urgent “Quack!”

I panicked, reader. I’ll be honest. Faced with a dangerous stranger and a maddened duck, I lost my head a little. I screamed, and stumbled across the room in a desperate attempt to escape. It just so happened that I tripped over the bed, and slammed head-first into the intruder.

“Y77yu4d9gb0o!” he yelled (or some other nonsense like it), and tumbled backwards out of the window hat first. The L-shaped device fell from his hand onto the bedroom floor. Just like that, he was gone.

“Good job Brightly!” said The Professor. “You’ve fought him off!”

I didn’t have to time to enjoy my accidental victory, because as we looked out of the window, the stranger reappeared. Only he didn’t head for us. Instead, he flew up into the night sky. He took off like a bird and was gone, leaving the lot of us staring at the stars.

Soot asked slowly, “Have any of you seen anything like that before?”

“No. Never.”

 

Chapter Eight

We set off across the sea the next morning. After the events of the previous night, the mood was tense.

“What do you think he wanted?” asked Florabel.

“Hard to tell, he spoke so strangely,” I said, “but I think he was after Soot.”

Soot made a face. I’m not that familiar with creepers pulling faces, but I think this was a frown.

“It’s a good thing you were there, Brightly,” said The Professor. “If it wasn’t for your bravery, the devil would have taken Soot with him.”

“Yes,” said Soot. He turned, and looked at me with a new kind of respect, “Thank you, Scuttlebutt. You saved my life.”

“Oh, uh…don’t mention it.” I chose to keep the fact that it was an accident to myself. Better they think of me as a hero than an unusually lucky coward.

We made our way across the ocean, with me taking the lead and the others following behind. Five boats trundling over the water, with a duck swimming along behind. Five boats, indeed. It’s a strange world we live in, reader. The day that some clever fellow invents a boat that can carry more than one person, that’ll be a great day.

As we went along, my thoughts dwelled on the top hat man. The way he moved, the way he acted, and the way he spoke. Something about him had been nagging me all morning, something I couldn’t quite put my finger on.

I slid my boat across the water, closer to The Professor’s, “That way he spoke.”

“Hmm?”

“The top hat man. The way he spoke. Very odd. Almost like that fellow you were talking to back in Bilgewater.”

“What fellow?” asked The Professor.

“The last night in Bilgewater,” I said. “I overheard you talking in the alleyway with a fellow who talked in that same way. Who was that?”

“Oh him,” said The Professor. He chuckled, “Haven’t the funniest old boy. Just some fellow I was buying arrows off.”

“D’you suppose he’s flying up there now?” asked Florabel, “watching us?”

We all looked up at the sky, where there was nothing but a few wispy clouds. “I hope not,” said Soot.

We carried on across the sea in silence after that, each lost in our own thought. The day dragged on from morning into afternoon, where the only noise was the sweep of the wind and an occasional quack from Mildred.

Boats don’t take very much steering, reader, so my hands were free to examine the strange object the flying man had dropped.

“What’s that?” The Professor asked me.

“This?” I held up the L-shaped thing. “Something the stranger dropped. I’m not sure what it is.”

“I can make a guess,” said The Professor.“I’ve heard of such thunder-makers before. I believe they’re called guns.” The Professor paused, deep in thought, before adding, “I think you’d better give it to me, Brightly. I’m a scientific, I can study it.”

“I found it,” I said.

“Yes I know, but…”

“Look ahead,” Ernest interrupted. He pointed out before us to two islands rising out of the sea. “Land.”

“Are those The Driftwood Islands?” asked Soot.

“Yes,” I replied, “Creeper’s Heart on the left, Creeper’s Fuse on the right.”

“Onwards to Creeper’s Fuse?” said Soot.

“Yes,” I said, “And we should be careful to avoid Creeper’s Heart. That island is notorious for the islanders.”

“Oh, why?”

“They have a habit of throwing intruders into their volcano.”

“Quack!” said Mildred.

 

Chapter Nine

Twenty minutes later, and I was running for my life along the beaches of Creeper’s Fuse, wondering how everything had gone so wrong so fast.

“Stop!” yelled Florabel. “Brightly, they’re not following us anymore. Stop running.”

I stumbled to a stop, gasping to get my breath back. Florabel was right behind me, her enchanted bow in her hand. Honestly reader, I’m not sure what happened to my sword. I think I must have dropped it in panic as soon as we set foot on the shore.

“Brightly, are you hurt?” asked Florabel.

“No,” I gasped, “just a little shaken.”

“Good!” Florabel threw a punch straight at my face. The barmaid was stronger than she looked, and sent me spiralling into the sand.

“Hey! Hey!” I moaned. “What was that for?!”

“This is all your fault,” she growled, “You picked the wrong island!”

“Did not!” I insisted. “This is Creeper’s Fuse alright. The islanders are just a bit less friendly than I remember.”

Florabel scowled, “You brainless nincompoop! Thanks to you our friends have been taken prisoner, and we’re stuck here without any boats!”

It looked pretty bad, it’s true. The islanders had attacked us as soon as we landed. I’d barely had enough time to say “Hello friends” before they started firing arrows at us. They’d taken Soot, Ernest, The Professor and Mildred as captives in a matter of seconds, and Florabel and I only escaped by running.

“Sorry,” I said, shrugging my shoulders. “Anyone can make a mistake.”

“Maybe,” said Florabel. “You sure make a lot of them. But that doesn’t matter now. We’ve got to come up with a plan fast – we’ve got to rescue the others.”

“Are you insane?!” I said, “There might be dozens of islanders, and they seemed awfully angry.How are you and me going to rescue them all by ourselves?”

“We’ll think of something,” Florabel insisted. She gave me one of those young lady’s glares that was impossible to argue with. She stormed up the beach towards the tree line, and I had no choice but to follow.

“What are you going to do?” I asked, scurrying along behind. “March into the middle of the island and ask politely that they return our friends? Or maybe offer to cook them some porkchops in return? Or maybe…”

“Look,” another fiery stare, “if you’re too frightened to come Brightly, you can just wait on the beach. On your own.”

This did not sound safe at all. So after a moment of thought, I decided to follow Florabel into the trees,into the dark jungle that, if I’m honest, really didn’t look very safe either. See, that’s the thing about going on adventures; most of it isn’t very safe. I was beginning to think that getting involved with the talking creeper and his colorful companions had been a very serious mistake. Especially this barmaid who didn’t seem afraid of anything.

We trudged through the jungle for almost an hour. Florabel found an old path, but we had to push through all the vines and weeds in our way. Progress was very slow. At every turn I expected an ocelot or a spider to jump out at us. But nothing appeared. Nothing at all.

“Do you even know where you’re going?” I asked Florabel.

“Why don’t you lead the way?” she said sharply. “You’re supposed to be the guide, remember?”

“We could be going around in circles,” I said, “or heading in the wrong direction. Soot and the others could be on the opposite side of the island.”

“Are you always this annoying?” Florabel asked.

“Only when I’m scared.”

“Well, stop.”

“That’s easy for you to say. You’re not a coward.”

Florabel paused. She turned back to me, “Brightly, if you’re such a coward, what in Notch’s name are you doing here?”

“That’s easy,” I said. “For the treasure.”

Florabel rolled her eyes. “Of course. It’s always about gold with you types, isn’t it? You want my advice, Brightly, become a miner. There’s plenty of gold in the ground, but the work is less dangerous…”

“You don’t understand,” I said. “It’s not the gold that’s important. It’s the adventure I have to go on to find it.”

“What do you mean?”

I sighed. “Look, as long as I can remember, I’ve been a coward. I guess I was just born that way. I always wanted to be a hero, but I can’t help it. My legs turn to jelly at the first sign of danger.”

“But?” asked Florabel.

“But this gold would change all that, wouldn’t it?” I asked. “If I got back to Bilgewater with a fortune in gold, I’m not a joke anymore. I’m the one who’s been on the daring adventures, the dashing renegade, I’m the hero like I always wanted to be. The gold? That’s the proof. If I get that gold, I get to be a hero.”

There was a long silence as Florabel took in what I’d said. I don’t know, perhaps she’d never had someone open their heart to her before. But she didn’t know what to say.

Suddenly I heard a rustling noise in the leaves behind Florabel. A noise I knew all too well from a lifetime of being a fraidy-cat.

“Hide!” I hissed sharply.

“What?”

I dived into Florabel, knocking both of us off the path and into the bushes. We went spiraling into the underbrush.

“What in the name of…?!”

“Shush!!” I whispered. I pointed back to the path, where the noise had come from. As we watched, an all-too-familiar green form emerged from the trees. Silent as stone apart from the rustling of leaves, it wandered along the path, looking side-to-side with its ugly head. I had to bite my lip to avoid a pitiful scream.

Thankfully, the creeper hadn’t noticed us.

A stranger’s voice echoed through the jungle, “Oi, Barry! I see him!”

My stomach did a back-flip. Florabel and I crouched even lower. The creeper perked up, looking for this new voice. He began to sizzle quietly.

“Oh yeah!” said a second voice, “There’s the little green devil. Thinks he can get away from us, does he?”

The creeper sizzled louder, and began to jitter from side to side. Then, without warning, the two strangers appeared from behind the trees. Rough, grim looking men with beards and scars. Each had a grizzled-looking cat at their side.

The cats hissed. The creeper made a noise, something between a growl and a cry, and began to back up. Another hiss from the cats, and he scurried back the way he’d come.

“Get him!” said the first stranger. They let their cats go, and they rushed off after the terrified creeper.

“That’s right,” said the second. “Chase him back towards the camp.”

As we watched, the two men moved to follow the chase slowly, like the whole encounter with a creeper was nothing more than business as usual.

“That’s the third escaped one today, Barry,” said the first stranger. “Odd, isn’t it?”

“Ah, so what,” said Barry. “You worry too much Harry. So long as we’ve got these cats, we can herd these green devils like sheep. We’ll have them all rounded up soon enough, just like Mr. Basher ordered.”

The two men wandered off, leaving Florabel and I in silence. Slowly, keeping as quiet as we could, we turned to each other.

“Who in Notch’s name were they?” asked Florabel.

I took me a few seconds to speak again. My teeth were still chattering. “I have no idea.”

“They were chasing a creeper? Who does that?”

“I don’t know,” I said. I hesitated for a moment. And then, dear reader, I said what might have been the bravest, most heroic thing I’d ever said, “but I think we should follow them.”

“Why?”

“Because I think they’re the ones who captured our friends.”

 

Chapter Ten

Barry and Harry weren’t hard to follow. Even a blind cow could have followed their trail through the forest. They hacked away all the leaves in their path and smashed all the shrubs and flowers in their way. Florabel and I had an easy time following them all the way to their camp.

We heard the camp before we saw it. Raised voices, shouts, and the meowing of many cats. As we got closer we saw a few wooden towers rising up above the trees. We reached the edge of the tree line and looked down into their camp.

“Well blow me down and call me Gordon,” I said. “Will you look at that?”

The camp was big, maybe a hundred blocks across where they’d cleared away the trees and used the wood for huts and towers. Most of the huts were clustered at one end, with a tower on each corner. But the rest of the camp was full of square pits, four or five blocks deep and maybe eight blocks across. And these pits, reader, were all full of creepers.

“What in Notch’s name are they doing?” whispered Florabel. “Are they catching creepers?”

It sure looked that way. I spotted our new friends Barry and Harry just ahead of us. They were using their cats to herd the runaway creeper towards the pit. It made one final panicked sizzling sound, and then fell back into the hole, where dozens of others were already trapped.

“D’you think Soot is in one of those pits?” I asked.

“Maybe. What about Ernest and The Professor?”

That question was answered quicker than expected. I spotted a pair of familiar figures being marched at sword-point into the largest hut. Ernest was going quietly, but The Professor was making a fuss.

“Do you have any idiom who I am?” he yelled, “I’m Professor Dinglebert Fairweather! I’m an intercontinental! Unhold me, you various renegade!”

“We have to get them out,” said Florabel.

“How?!”

“Follow me.”

Florabel dashed into the camp, sneaking towards one of the towers. I had no choice but to follow, hoping to my lucky stars that nobody would spot us.

We hid behind the tower, and Florabel peered around the corner. “Brightly, look. Over by the huts!”

She pointed and I saw the start of a mine-cart track. A slope with a track leading down and deep into the jungle.

“Where d’you think that goes?” asked Florabel.

“I have no idea.”

“Let’s get the others quick. For all we know, they’ve already sent Soot away in a mine-cart. Come on, Brightly, what are we going to do? Think.”

“I have a plan.”

“What?”

I don’t know why I did it. It’s quite out of character for Scuttlebutt Brightly to act fast, or do anything that’ll put himself in danger. But who knows. Maybe I had a moment of madness. Maybe I got caught up in moment. Maybe I wanted to prove to Florabel that I wasn’t just a worthless good-for-nothing coward. But for whatever reason, at that moment I snatched Florabel’s bow, pushed her out in front of me, and began marching through the camp.

“What are you doing?!”

“Just relax. Act like a prisoner.”

“Hey you!” yelled a voice. We were walking past Harry and Barry, who were standing by a creeper pit with their cats. “What’s going on here?”

“Oh, uh…” I said, “Uh, arrrrr! Well howdy there, mateys. I was just, uh…I mean…I was taking this prisoner here up to the hut, ya see. Arrr.”

“Who are you?” frowned Barry. “I ain’t seen you around here before, have I?”

“Me? Oh, uh, my name is….” My mind raced, “Larry. I’m Larry. C’mon Barry, Harry, you must remember me. I’ve been here all week. Arrrr.”

Both paused, thinking. Then Barry said, “Of course. Sorry Larry, I’ve got a terrible memory for faces.”

“Me too,” said Harry.

“So who’s she?” asked Barry.

“She?” I said, nodding my head to Florabel. “Oh, I caught her sniffing around the creeper pits, arrr. I think she’s with those fellows we found earlier on the beach. Arrr.”

“What makes you think that?”

I gave Florabel a nudge.

“Oh, uh, I’m with them,” said Florabel. “That’s me, yep. Guilty as anything.”

“Uh, the Boss…” I tried to remember what Harry and Barry had called him, “Mr. Basher. He wants me to interrogate them at once. Arrr.”

Harry and Barry’s eyes widened, “Mr. Basher said that? Oh then hurry. It’s a bad idea to keep Mr. Basher waiting.”

“That it is, arrrrr. Good day, mateys.”

I pushed Florabel ahead of me, marching up towards the prisoner’s hut. A few of the other creeper catchers turned to us, giving me sideways looks. But no one else stopped us as we went.

“I hate to admit it Brightly,” whispered Florabel, “but that was pretty good.”

“Really?” I said. “My legs are shaking like jelly, I can’t believe they bought it.”

“You’re a good liar,” said Florabel. “Looks like we’ve finally put that to good use.”

 

Chapter Eleven

As we approached the prisoner’s hut, we began to hear voices. I nodded to Florabel that we should use the back window. Those voices might not be friendly ones.

“Wat u mean lost?”

“He slipped in amongst the other creepers. He looks just like any of the others.”

“Srsly?”

“Don’t panic. We’ll find him. You just have to be penitent.”

“Liliths v angry”

“Don’t worry about Lilith. We’ll find him. I Prozac.”

Florabel and I peered through the window of the hut. The room was empty apart from a small chest by the door, and a set of iron bars by the wall. Behind the iron bars was Ernest, looking sourer than a blaze on a rainy day.

In the middle of the room, Professor Fairweather was standing, talking with none other than our flying top-hatted friend from Point’s End.

And I tell you something else reader, something you may not believe. For the first time, I got a good look at our strange-talking friend. He looked peculiar anyway in his hat and black leather armor. But most curious of all, I noticed there were words hovering over his head. ‘Turbo_Basher007’ written in white letters.

Mr. Basher. That’s what Harry and Barry had said. This was Mr. Basher, with his name hanging over him.

“U find creepr,” said Basher. “Now!”

“Soon,” said The Professor, “I just need a little more time.”

“He’s working with them!” Florabel whispered, pointing to The Professor. “I can’t believe it!”

“Neither can I,” I replied. You probably worked it out already, reader, that The Professor was no good. But you’re also probably smarter than I am.

“This is your fault,” said The Professor, pointing to Basher. “If you hadn’t got impious and attacked us at Point’s End!”

“Impatient, not impious. Fwl,” said Basher.

“Ok, I’ve got an idea,” I whispered to Florabel. “I’m going to sneak in and free Ernest…”

Florabel gave me a sideways look like a fish suspicious of a hook. “You’re doing something brave, Brightly? That doesn’t seem right…”

“It’s because you’re gonna do something even more dangerous,” I said. I bent down, and whispered my plan into her ear.

Florabel scowled, “You can’t be serious.”

“I am,” I said. “Now go, Florabel. Quickly.”

“This had better work, Brightly.”

The brave barmaid hurried away, leaving me at the window. The Professor and Basher were still arguing; they hadn’t noticed me. If I was quick, I could slip into the room, pop open the cage door, and sneak away with Ernest without them noticing. So at this point, I said something like “Come on fella, this is your moment,” or “You can do this, you miserable coward, you can do this,” and, quiet as a creeper, I slipped through the window.

I’ve had a lot of practice keeping quiet. That comes with being a fraidy-cat, the ability to escape without people noticing. So, if I do say so myself, it was easy enough for me to slip over to Ernest without The Professor and Basher noticing.

“Brightly?” Ernest whispered, “What the…?!”

“I’m getting you out, shush!” I said. I opened the door, and pointed towards the window, “Follow me. And keep quiet.”

Ernest was less sneaky than me. He was a big fellow, and as the former prince of Wintertide I doubt he’d ever had to sneak before. But he did alright. Basher and The Professor were too busy arguing to pay attention.

“U fwl. U can’t evn speak rite m8!”

“Oh that’s rich coming from you, you clamorous interospect.”

“Wat dos dat evn meen?”

“I don’t even know! But you are one.”

We reached the window. I pushed Ernest through first, and went to climb after him. My heart was hammering in my chest. We’d almost done it; we’d almost gotten away. As I went through that window, reader, a flood of relief fell over me. That’s when, of course, disaster struck.

Another figure entered the room. This one was a woman, with long black hair and a streak of white. She, like Basher, had a name hovering over her head. Hers said ‘Lilith938.’ She was walking towards The Professor and Basher. She probably wouldn’t have noticed us at all if Ernest hadn’t yelled “You!”

“What?!” I hissed at him.

“It’s her!” said Ernest. “She’s the enchantress that took my kingdom from me!”

All heads turned to face us. The Professor. Basher. Lilith. All focused on me and Ernest, stood just outside the window.

I smiled my most charming smile, “Is something the matter, chaps?”

 

Chapter Twelve

Everything happened so fast after that. Hands clamped around my shoulders, and Ernest and I were marched out into the center of the camp. Harry, Barry, and all their other grizzly companions encircled us, holding up their iron swords and snarling.

“You and your big mouth,” I said to Ernest. “We’d have gotten away if you hadn’t…”

“That woman stole my kingdom from me,” Ernest growled.

“You could have told me that after we’d escaped.”

The circle of enemies parted, and Lilith, Basher, and The Professor appeared. The first two looked calm, but The Professor kept looking at the ground, like he couldn’t meet our eyes.

“Traitor,” Ernest barked at him. “I trusted you, you tweedle mouth buffoon!”

“You fool,” said Professor Fairweather. “You understudy nothing!”

“Well, well,” said Lilith. She, unlike Basher, had a soft, peaceful voice like flowing water. “So you’re the poor fellows the talking creeper hired to help him get to Creeper’s Fuse.”

“There was another,” said The Professor. “A barmaid, Florabel.”

“Where is she?” asked Lilith.

I shrugged, “Haven’t the foggiest.”

“He’s lying,” Barry perked up. “Me and Harry saw her with him, just ten minutes ago. She’s in the camp somewhere.”

“Find her,” commanded Lilith, sending Harry and Barry away. She turned back to me and Ernest.“And what about the talking creeper?”

“Soot,” said Ernest, “his name is Soot.”

“Soot,” said Lilith. “Yes, where is he hiding.”

“We don’t know,” I said, telling the truth for once. “I thought you’d captured him. But maybe not. Maybe he escaped into the jungle. Maybe he’s found the sorceress we came here to find already, maybe he’s on his way here right now with help.”

Lilith laughed, “Oh of course, that’s why you’re here isn’t it? Soot wants to find the sorceress that gave him the ability to talk.”

“Where is she?” asked Ernest.

“And her treasure,” I added.

“The sorceress?” Lilith laughed. “You’re talking to her.”

“You?!”

“Yes,” said Lilith, “though I don’t think I’d use the term sorceress. Me and Basher here, we’re what people call Modders.”

“Modders?”

Lilith sighed, “You really don’t understand, do you? This is a game, Mr. Brightly. Just a building game, and you’re just a few lines of code. Me and Basher, we’re players, this is our world. And we like to modify it, to mold it in the ways we want. Like with Soot. He was just an ordinary creeper when I found him. But you see, I modded him. I typed a few lines of code, and I gave him the ability to speak. I wanted to give him hands too, but Basher thought…”

“Bad idea,” said Basher, “V bad idea m8.”

“Don’t you see, Brightly?” said Lilith, “This is our world. You, Soot, Ernest, you’re just NPCs. It’s pointless to stand in our way.”

There was a long pause. Finally, I said, “Sorry, I don’t understand a single word you’ve just said.”

I’ve written it down exactly as she said it, reader. I don’t know if any of that makes sense to you, but it sounded like the ramblings of a madwoman to me.

Lilith sighed, “Alright then Brightly, I’ll make it simple for you. I just want my talking creeper back. Help me find him, and you can go free.”

“What do you want him for?” I asked. I looked around, at all the creeper pits. “What’s going on here? Collecting all these creepers?”

“Tell im,” said Basher.

“It’s really very simple,” said Lilith. “Creepers, frankly, are extremely irritating. Ever since I first started to build, these devils have been destroying my work. Griefing me. Well, I’ve had enough. So I and Basher are going to round up all the creepers in the world, and we’re going to exterminate them.”

My jaw dropped, “All of them?”

“Evry last 1 m8” said Basher.

“That’s why I need Soot,” said Lilith. “He can herd them for me. He can bring the creepers to Creeper’s Fuse far more easily than I can.” She paused for a moment before adding, “Help me, Scuttlebutt Brightly. You’re an ordinary man, you know as much as anyone that creepers are vile, evil creatures. It is better that they be removed from the game. You know I’m right.”

“She’s right,” said The Professor.

“Don’t listen to her,” said Ernest.

Something came back to me then, reader. Something Soot had told me, back on that hill where we first met. “We creepers only explode when we’re scared.” A creeper said that, a creeper who’d saved my life. A creeper who’d never done anything bad to me, and only wanted to help his fellows.

I looked up, looked Lilith straight in the eye, and yelled, “Florabel! Now!”

There was the click of an opening gate. Just as I’d planned, the gate to the creeper pit swung open. Then, like a green flood, the creepers rushed out. Dozens of them, sizzling and fizzing like never before, running all across the camp.

The creeper-catchers panicked. As the creepers ran towards them, they scattered in different directions. Some left, some right, all of them away from us.

“Come bakk! Cowards!!!” yelled Basher. But it was no use. The creeper-trappers ran.

As I’d planned, this distracted everyone just long enough for me to pull the gun out. The Professor noticed first, and his eyes boggled.

I pulled the trigger. A bang rang out like a thunderclap, frightening The Professor so much that he tumbled onto his back. Lilith and Basher turned to me as I leveled the thing at them.

“Get out of here,” I yelled, “or else.”

They didn’t need telling twice. Faced with the creepers running wild and my L-shaped thunder machine, they chose to run. They both took off, and flew up into the sky.

“Wait!” The Professor yelled, “take me with you!”

They ignored him. In a flash, they were gone. The creeper-catchers had hurried off into the jungle with the angry creepers hot on their heels.

“Mildred?!” yelled Florabel, scanning the camp. “Mildred?! Where are you?!”

“They took her from us on the beach,” said Ernest. “I haven’t seen her.”

Florabel looked around. Then she caught sight of something resting just beside the campfire. A cooked chicken. Or a duck, it’s hard to tell even before they’re cooked.

Florabel bowed her head, “Oh no…”

Ernest put his hand on Florabel’s shoulder, “I’m sorry Florabel. Truly. Mildred deserved better. She was, without a doubt, the bravest, most courageous duck I’ve ever known. If I …”

“Quack!”

The pair spun around, and Mildred was waiting. Cheerful as ever, flapping her wings with glee.

“You stupid bird!” said Florabel, “You scared me!”

“Quack!” said Mildred, “Cluck-cluck-cluck.”

With a pop, an egg appeared behind Mildred. Florabel and Ernest stared, confused, whilst Mildred went on quacking and clucking.

“Do ducks lay eggs too?” asked Ernest.

“I don’t know.”

 

Chapter Thirteen

Whilst Mildred was making her triumphant return, I noticed that the camp wasn’t quite as deserted as we’d thought. All the creepers had left to chase the trappers into the forest. All except one, who was still standing in the pit staring miserably at the wall.

“Soot?” I asked. This last creeper was cowering in the corner, looking as sadder than a hungry dog.

“Go away,” said Soot. “Leave me alone.”

“Don’t be like that,” I said. “You don’t have to worry. Thanks to my bravery….”

“Ahem,” Florabel nudged me.

Our bravery,” I corrected, “The modders are gone. It’s over.”

“Gone for now,” said Soot, “but they’re not going to stop. This whole quest, everything I’ve done, it’s just been a waste of time. How could I have been so stupid?With their powers, they’ll be up and hunting creepers again in a few weeks.”

“Ok,” said Florabel. She moved to face Soot, and put a hand softly on the creeper’s shoulder. “Then let’s stop them, eh? We’ve come all this way.It doesn’t have to be for nothing.”

“How?” asked Soot. “They’ve got powers beyond our wildest dreams. What have we got?”

“Each other,” said Florabel. I made a face, “You’ve got me, Soot, and Ernest. And Brightly.”

“Ah,” I said, raising my hand, “well, the thing is…”

“Think of the treasure, Brightly,” said Florabel with a nod. “It’s not far now. It’s almost yours.”

“Oh,” I said. “Well in that case, count me in. Uh…where is it?”

“I remember a giant statue of a creeper,” said Soot, “That is where Lilith made me able to talk.”

“I’ve heard of it,” I said, “It’s on the north side of the island. That’s where the treasure is?”

“And the modder’s base.” said Florabel, “If we want to stop them, we can start by destroying that.”

“How will we find it? This is a big island.”

“That’s easy,” said Florabel, with a wily smirk of her own.

As if on cue, Ernest grabbed The Professor by the scruff of his jacket and threw him against the wall. All four of us stared him down, and all the color drained from his face, “G-get away f-from me, you viscous regenerates!”

“I trusted you, Fairweather,” said Soot. “You said you believed in helping creepers.”

“Why’d you do it, Professor?” asked Ernest. “Gold? Diamonds?”

“Hardly,” said Fairweather with a snort. “It was perfectly logistical. If I brought them the talking creeper, they’d share their secrets with me. You wouldn’t believe the things these modders can do, the things they can build…”

“Just tell us where they went,” I said.

“Celery not,” said The Professor.

“You know, Professor,” I said, “Ernest here really wants to hit something, and…”

“Alright, alright!” he said, “They have gone to their fortress on the north side of the island. It’s their base of operatics.”

“Operations,” Soot corrected.

“Yes, yes. How do we get there?”

The Professor pointed, “That mine-cart track. Goes straight to it.”

“Well that’s convenient.”

“Alright,” I said, “Gentlemen, lady, it appears we have a plan. To the mine-cart.”

“So you’re coming with us, Brightly?”

“Of course,” I flashed a renegade smile, and for once, it felt like it really fit on my face. “There’s a fortune of gold with my name on it. You said so yourself.”

“What about him?” asked Ernest, pointing to The Professor.

“I have an idea,” said Soot.

We left The Professor in the pit, shutting the door and locking it behind us. The four of us gathered our things, reader, and made our way over to the mine-carts. Behind us, The Professor yelled the most remarkable string of insults I’ve ever had the pleasure of hearing. I’ve written down as much of it as I can remember:

“You think you’ve heard the last of me? I’m Professor Dinglebert Fairweather! I’m an abacus, do you hear?! A genetic abacus! Once I’ve periodically escaped from this piston, I’ll be coming after you with a verdant! You’re a bunch of disjointed, cherry-blossomed, generational jockeys! Irreverent dangling metropolitan plasters! I’ll get you for this insert! I Prozac!”

 

Chapter Fourteen

I’ve never been one for mine-carts. See, I’ve been told time and time again that they’re the safest way to travel. Less dangerous than taking a stroll in the forest, they say. But it sure doesn’t feel that way. Twisting, turning, rushing along at break-neck speed. Terrible business. So believe me when I say that, back then on Creeper’s Fuse, I was so excited about the prospect of the treasure, and so full of courage after our showdown with the modders, that I’d quite forgotten how much I hate mine-carts.

“Ahhhhhhhh!” I screamed at each turn, drop, and rise.

“Brightly, will you be quiet!” said Ernest, in the cart just behind me. “You’re giving me ear ache!”

“Sorry, it’s just….ahhhhhhh!!!”

This went on for some time, unfortunately. The track was longer than I expected. And whatever idiot had built it had chosen, for whatever reason, that ups and downs were much better than one straight track.

“Ahhhhhh!” I yelled on the gazillionth drop.

“Stop it!” said Ernest. “In the name of Notch, please!”

“I can’t help it,” I said.

“Try,” said Florabel, cradling Mildred.

“Yeah,” said Ernest, “Or I’ll have to come back there and…”

“Shush!” said Soot, who was riding the mine-cart at the front. “Look!”

We were rising up now, hitting powered track after powered track and speeding into the sky. Finally, we emerged above the rock and trees, and got a good look at the land ahead.

“I think we’ve found it,” said Soot, “The Modder’s castle.”

I tell you, reader, I’ve not set eyes on anything like it before or since. This was no castle – this was too big to be a castle. This was more like a fortress. There were cobblestone walls rising twenty blocks high surrounding the whole thing, with a bastion at every corner. Inside the walls were dozens of buildings, towers, and structures of every shape and size. Things that I couldn’t understand. Colors and materials I didn’t recognize. Great spinning rotors at the top of some buildings that seemed to turn with the wind. Strange ship-like things floating over the complex, strapped to stacks of white wool like they were hanging from clouds. All the wonders of the world, right before our eyes.

“This is incredible,” said Florabel. “This must have taken years to build.”

The mine-carts headed towards the fortress, riding along a raised wooden platform. Ahead, we caught sight of the centerpiece. I gigantic stone building in the shape of a creeper, complete with a sinister frown.

“The Creeper of Creeper’s Fuse,” said Soot. “We’ve found it.”

“It’s an exact replica,” I said. “A wonder of engineering.”

“What?”

“Nothing. Just something The Professor once said.”

The mine-carts kept going, over the walls and straight towards the giant creeper. I looked over the side, and saw the streets below were empty. No villagers wandering about, no people. It was like the entire place had been built just for the sake of building. Creepy, right?

We carried on in silence, distracted by the wonders around us. We didn’t say a word until we approached the end of the line, which turned out to be a station built into the gigantic creeper’s foot.

“This is it” said Soot, looking up at the giant building. “This is where I was given the ability to speak. I remember. It didn’t have all the other stuff back then; it was just a giant statue.”

“With gold inside?” I asked.

“Yeah.”

“Ah, well. What are we waiting for,” I said. With Soot, Florabel, Ernest and Mildred in tow, I made my way towards the entrance. Now, I don’t know if any of you reading this have ever been a supervillain before, or ever built yourself an evil lair to hang out in. But for any evil lair, you’d expect some kind of trap, wouldn’t you? A pressure plate and arrow trap, or a falling ceiling. Or even a sturdy metal door that can’t be broken down.

This place? Well, it had a wooden door. And a sign beside the door which read, “No trespassing.”

Ernest and I shared a baffled look. “Is that it?” I asked.

“Quack,” said Mildred, “Cluck-cluck.”

“Guess they don’t get many visitors.”

I tried the door. No trap. No alarm. It just swung open, revealing a grand hallway with stairs going up into the tower.

“Up?” I said.

“Yeah,” said Soot. “If the modders are anywhere, they’ll be upstairs. If we take them by surprise, we can put an end to all this right now.”

“Agreed,” I said. I drew the gun, “Let’s go save the gold.”

“D’you mean save the world?”

“Yes. Of course.”

I hurried inside, making a break for the stairs. Mildred was next, flapping excitedly. Ernest and Soot came right behind. Only Florabel hesitated. She held up her bow, casting her eyes around the empty building suspiciously.

“Doesn’t this seem a bit too easy to you?” she asked, “No traps, no alarms, nothing?”

I ignored her. I could almost smell the treasure now. Nothing could get in my way, not even a creepy empty building. So I ran up those steps like a sprinting ocelot, spiraling up and up until we reached the top. The Creeper’s Head.

I burst through the door, and my eyes lit up. Before me, dear reader, was more gold than I’d ever seen in my life.

 

Chapter Fifteen

“In the name of Notch…” said Ernest, staring.

“There must be a hundred blocks,” said Soot, “and all of solid gold.”

“Quack!” agreed Mildred.

I didn’t say a word. I just stared. It was like I’d taken a step into my dreams, and was now standing amongst them. I reached out to touch the nearest block. It was solid, reader, it was real. I could barely contain myself. I began to laugh.

“Contain yourself Brightly,” said Soot, “it’s only gold.”

Only gold? Huh, indeed. Trust the creeper to say a silly thing like that. There was enough gold here to last a lifetime. When I returned to Bilgewater with all of this, I wouldn’t just be a hero. I’d be the greatest, bravest, most famous hero ever to go adventuring. No one would ever dare call me a coward again. In that moment, reader, I felt like all my problems were solved.

“Where are the modders?” asked Florabel. “The Professor said they’d be here.”

“They might have gone out,” said Soot, “and could be back at any moment. We should be quick.”

“What should we do?”

“We need to put a stop to them before they can carry out their plans and round up the creepers,” said Soot. “This is their base of operations,” The Professor said. “If we could shut it down, destroy it, maybe that would at least buy us some time.”

“You want to grief them?” asked Florabel, with a wry grin.

Soot smirked, “Yes. Yes I suppose I do.”

“Well you’d need an awful lot of TNT,” said Ernest. “This building alone is gigantic, never mind the others.”

“Maybe they’ve got some gunpowder lying around?”

“What about sand?”

“Well there’s always the beach…”

Whilst the others planned their explosive little plans, I was busy exploring the room. Every turn, there was more gold, stacked up like boxes. The only wall that was bare was the far end from the door. Here the wall was plain cobblestone and had nothing on it but a single lever.

There was a sign above that read, “The Creeper’s Fuse” with arrows pointing to the lever. At the time I barely noticed it, reader. It was less interesting than the gold.

“Alright, freeze!”

We all turned, and my legs began to turn to jelly once again. The modders, Lilith and Basher, were standing in the doorway. Better prepared now, each of them had a gun pointed at us. They weren’t alone either. A troop of strange creatures followed them in, marching toward us. These creatures looked like people, but seemed to be made of clay.

“What in Notch’s name are those?” asked Ernest, drawing his diamond sword menacingly.

“Clay soldiers,” said Lilith, “They obey my commands only. Now drop your weapons or they’ll attack.”

“Soot, get behind us,” said Florabel. “Quick!”

The creeper did as he was told. He took shelter behind Florabel and Ernest, and (through no fault of my own), me too. The clay men marched at us, pushing us towards the back wall.

“You know, I expected more of you,” said Lilith, smirking. “You really thought you could just walk right into our fortress? You’re stupider than I thought.”

“Told you so,” said Florabel.

“Nobody likes a gloat,” I said.

“You can’t escape,” Lilith went on. “We know this tower like the backs of our hands. It is the first thing me and Basher ever built. A scale replica of a creeper, complete with (MISSING WORD?). A marvel, wouldn’t you say?”

“Pretty dull,” said Ernest.

Lilith’s gaze soured, “Alright. Enough talk.”

“Get outta da way,” said Basher. He hovered above the clay soldiers, leveling his gun. “Give us da creepr!”

“If you want him,” said Florabel, “You’ll have to come through us.”

“I’d rather not,” said Lilith, “I’m in a hurry. So I’ll make this easy. Hand over Soot, and you can walk away with all the gold you can carry.”

“Never!” said Florabel.

“I wasn’t talking to you,” said Lilith. She looked directly at me, reader, with those piercing green eyes. “Brightly. You know that there’s no point in resisting us. We’re players. We always win in the end.”

“Yeh boi!” said Basher.

“Give us the creeper,” she stretched out her hand, “You can take the gold and go free. That’s what you want, isn’t it?”

I hesitated. I won’t pretend I didn’t. If I’m honest to anyone, reader, I’m honest to you. And the thought of walking out with the gold, that was positively dizzying. But then I thought of Soot, see. The creeper who’d saved my life. Of Ernest and Florabel, and the adventure we’d had together. The first true adventure I’d ever had, where I hadn’t had to lie, cheat, or make it up. So standing there, in The Creeper’s Head surrounded by gold, I made my choice.

“Alright,” I said, “But first, can I just ask one question?”

“Of course,” said Lilith.

I pulled the lever on the wall, the one marked ‘Creeper’s Fuse, “What does this do?”

Lilith’s eyes boggled, “No!!!!”

Basher flew towards us, “Don’t touch dat!”

Basher never reached me. Ernest leapt in the way, knocking the top-hatted modder to the ground with a swing of his powerful fist.

The ground beneath us began to shake. Softly at first, but then more violently. Like the entire tower was shivering. Then I began to hear a sizzling sound, just like a creeper makes when it’s about to explode. Only this was much, much louder.

“That doesn’t sound good,” said Florabel.

“You fool!” yelled Lilith. “You’ve ruined everything!”

Florabel began to fire arrows at the modder. But Lilith didn’t wait around. Cursing and yelling in fury, she took off and headed for the door. Ernest ran toward Basher, his diamond sword raised, but the modder was faster, and followed Lilith out the door as fast as he could.

“This isn’t over!” yelled Lilith. “You think you’ve won, but all you’ve done is make me angry. Very, very angry! And I tell you something else, I…”

A few more arrows from Florabel did the trick. Lilith flew out of the door and was gone. For now, at least, we’d sent the modders packing.

The rumbling beneath our feet got louder. It was shaking so much now that the clay soldiers were falling over like dominos. With Lilith no longer around to give them orders, I guess they were just waiting patiently to be told what to do.

“What did you do?” asked Florabel.

“They said it was a working model of a creeper,” I said, “And this is the Creeper’s Fuse. So you light the fuse, and the whole thing explodes, right? Just like a real creeper, but bigger.”

“This whole thing is gonna explode?!” said Soot.

“Well, you said you wanted to grief the place,” said Florabel.

 

Chapter Sixteen

“Come on! We have to get out of here!” yelled Ernest. He was running for the door, knocking the clay soldiers aside as he went. Florabel was right behind him, and then Soot. The tower was shaking like never before, enough to shake you clean off your feet.

As he reached doorway, Soot turned back, “Brightly, what in Notch’s name are you doing? We’ve got to get out of here!”

“Just a minute!”

I’d quickly fashioned a wooden pick-axe from the wood left over from the boats, and had turned my attention to the nearest gold block. See, I knew the creeper was going to explode, reader. I knew that any second the TNT inside it would blow us all sky high. But I was surrounded by so much gold. I could touch it. I could smell it. I just couldn’t bear the thought of leaving without even a little of it. Gold always overcomes fear. Even when fear is the perfectly sensible thing.

“Leave the gold, you fool!” yelled Ernest.

“Just one block!”

“You can’t mine gold with a wooden pick!” yelled Soot.

“Has anyone got a spare iron pick?”

“No! Get over here now!”

“I’ll just use my hands,” I said. I began punching the gold block. It was a moment of madness, reader, but right then I was determined not to leave without the gold. Determined like I’d never been before.

“I’ll get him.”

“Florabel, no!”

The barmaid rushed across the room. She dashed through the toppling clay soldiers, doing her best not to fall over, and was suddenly at my side.

“Scuttlebutt,” she said. “Let it go.”

“No!” I said, “I can’t! I need this treasure. It’s why I came! Without it, I’m just a washed-up lying coward like I was before.”

“No you’re not,” said Florabel, “Look at what you’ve done, Scuttlebutt. You’ve gone on a daring quest to a dangerous island. You saved Soot’s life back at Point’s End. You saved me from the creeper in the forest, you saved Ernest at the camp. You’ve just saved us again from the modders. You don’t need the gold, Scuttlebutt. You’re already an adventurer.”

“It doesn’t matter,” I said. “Even if I did do all those things, nobody will believe it.”

Florabel smiled that knowing, barmaid’s smile, “Who cares? You did do it, that’s what matters.”

I looked from the gold block to the barmaid who’d become my unlikely friend. I looked at the doorway, where Ernest and Soot were waiting anxiously.

In that moment, reader, I think I understood just a little of what it means not to be a low-down, dirty, lying cheat. Nothing dramatic, but just a taste.

“Alright,” I said, “we’ll leave the gold.”

“Good,” said Florabel, “Now come on, hurry, this place is going to go pop any second…”

There was an almighty bang. Hundreds of times louder than the thunderclap of the L-shaped machine, louder even than a strike of lightning. Suddenly I was off my feet.

 

Chapter Seventeen

Next thing I knew I was flying through the air. I couldn’t tell you how high, but I think I caught sight of the clouds zipping past me. A huge explosion, the likes of which I’d never seen, bloomed behind me. The Creeper had started a chain reaction, and the entire fortress was falling apart. The ultimate grief.

First I was flying, and then I was falling. It was enough to make any ordinary person feel quite sick.

Down, down, and down. I saw Mildred beside me, squawking her head off like I’ve never seen a duck or a chicken do. Then, far below us, I saw the ocean. Far below, but getting closer every second.

I smashed into the water with an ear-splitting splosh. I think I saw Soot hit the water too. Or maybe it was Ernest, or Florabel. I can’t be sure. My head was so scrambled I began to pass out. It had been a very long day.

The next thing I remembered, reader, was lying on some beach at night, with a few torches burning around me. As I lay there with a face-full of sand, my senses began to return to me. First my head, and the predictable headache. Then my ears, ringing from the blast.

Finally, my eyes adjusted to the dim orange torch-light. It was a beach alright, I could just make out a tree-line ahead of me. Whether this was the beach of Creeper’s Fuse, or some other island entirely, I had no clue.

The only thing I could see was a sign, set up just in front of me, with an arrow pointing up the beach. And that sign, reader, was where my adventure took a turn for the stranger:

‘Wintertide, 40 miles. Madame Tiki’s Tropicana Club, 2 miles. Fresh milkshakes on Sundays.’

A familiar figure appeared in front of me, flapping her wings to dry them off. Mildred nodded her head at the sign, and gave a sharp, “Quack!”

“You’re right Mildred,” I said, climbing to my feet, “It is a Sunday.”

 

 

 

About the Author

Mark Mulle is a passionate Minecraft gamer who writes game guides, short stories, and novels about the Minecraft universe. He has been exploring, building, and fighting in the game ever since its launch, and he often uses in-game experiences for inspiration on creating the best fiction for fellow fans of the game. He works as a professional writer and splits his time between gaming, reading, and storytelling, three hobbies and lifelong passions that he attributes to a love of roleplaying, a pursuit of challenging new perspectives, and a visceral enjoyment the vast worlds that imagination has to offer. His favorite thing to do, after a long day of creating worlds both on and off the online gaming community, is to relax with his dog, Herobrine, and to unwind with a good book. His favorite authors include Stephen King, Richard A. Knaak, George R. R. Martin, and R. A. Salvatore, whose fantasy works he grew up reading or is currently reading. Just like in Minecraft, Mark always strives to level up, so to speak, so that he can improve his skills and continue to surprise his audience. He prefers to play massive multiplayer online games but often spends time in those games fighting monsters one on one and going solo against the toughest mobs and bosses he can manage to topple. In every game, his signature character build is a male who focuses mostly on crafting weapons and enchanting, and in every battle, he always brings a one hander sword and a shield with as much magical attributes as he can pour into them. Because he always plays alone, he likes to use his game guides to share all the secrets and knowledge he gains, and who know—he may have snuck some information into his fiction as well. Keep an eye out for his next book!

 

 

Other books by this author

Please visit your favorite eBook retailer to discover other books by Mark Mulle

 

Diary of a Brave Iron Golem

Book 1: The Village Protector

Book 2: Attacked by the Wither

 

Diary of Jake and His Zombie Pigman

Book 1: The Creature from the Nether

Book 2: The Spiders Show the Way

 

The White Eyed Ghost’s Promise

Book 1: Herobrine Lives

Book 2: Herobrine’s Manor

 

Diary of a Hero Zombie

Book 1: Herobrine’s Gauntlet

Book 2: The Cult of Herobrine

Book 3: Into the Nether Portal

 

Diary of Erik Enderman

Book 1: Block Thief

Book 2: Adventures with Steve

Book 3: The Legend of the Endermen’s Treasure

 

Diary of a Valiant Wolf

Book 1: Steve’s Wolves

Book 2: Zombie Horde

Book 3: Defeating the Dragon

 

Diary of a Mob – Bony the Skeleton,

Book 1: Where the Block is My Bow?

Book 2: Where the Block is My Dad?

 

Diary of a Mob – Sebastian the Gutsy Sheep

Book 1: No Ordinary Sheep

Book 2: Sebastian Seeks Revenge

 

Rise of the Wither, Book 1: New Danger

 

Books in the Carnival of Doom series

Book One: The Angry Ghost

Book Two: To the Nether Portal

Book Three: Trapped

 

Books in the Diary of a Crafty Player Series

Book One: Blocky World

Book Two: The Fort Keepers

Book Three: The Search for the Dragon

 

Diary of Reg the Villager,

Book One: In Search of the Creative Mode

Book Two: Nether Here Nor There

Book Three: The Wolfdog and the Dragon

 

Diary of Steve the Explorer, The Cube World Chronicles

Book One: The Unknown Enemy

Book Two: Diary of the Curious Creeper

Book Three: Diary of an Enderman, the Game Keeper

 

Diary of Steve the Adventurer,

Book One: In the Lair of Herobrine

Book Two: To the Nether Portal

 

Diary of a Zombie Hunter,

Book One: The Zombie Specialist

Book Two: Zombie or Griefers

Book Three: The Captain of Overwatch

 

Diary of a Mob – Rowley the Rabbit,

Book One: The Runaway Rabbit

 

Books in the Diary of an Adventurous Creeper Series

Book One: Creeper Chronicles

Book Two: Journey to the End

Book Three: Dragon Savior

 

Books in the Adventures Through the Over World Trilogy

Book One: Creeping Transformation

Book Two: Steven and the Island of Bones

Book Three: The Zoo in Jericho City

 

The Quest: The Untold Story of Steve Trilogy

Book One: The Tale of a Hero

Book Two: The Unfinished Game

Book Three: The Endings and Beginnings of a Legend

 

The Obsidian Chronicles Trilogy

The Obsidian Chronicles, Book One: Ender Rain

The Obsidian Chronicles, Book Two: Hell and Back

The Obsidian Chronicles, Book Three: Of Dragons and Demons

 

The Doppelganger Trilogy

The Doppelganger, Book One: Steve’s Chance

The Doppelganger, Book Two: Steve vs. Herobrine

The Doppelganger, Book Three: The Ender Dragon Reborn

 

The Cult Trilogy

The Cult, Part One

The Cult, Part Two

The Cult, Part Three

 

The Legend: The Mystery of Herobrine Trilogy

Book One: The Start of the Quest

Book Two: The Truth about the Myth

Book Three: Herobrine versus the World

 

The Dragon’s Mountain Trilogy

Book One: Attacked by the Griefers

Book Two: The Hidden Village

Book Three: The White Mobs

 

The Temple of Destruction Trilogy

Book One: The Lost Treasures

Book Two: The Curse

Book Three: Notch versus Herobrine

 

Books in The Enemy’s Revenge Trilogy

Book One: Ghost Sightings

Book Two: Kidnapped

Book Three: To The End World

 

Attack of the Overworld Trilogy

Book One: Finding Herobrine

Book Two: Finding Steve

Book Three: The Final Mine

 


Scuttlebutt Brightly and the Creeper’s Fuse, Book 1: The Adventurer From Bilge

GENRE: Children’s Adventure (An Unofficial Minecraft Book for Kids Ages 9 - 12 (Preteen) Book 1: The Adventurer from Bilgewater Scuttlebutt Brightly has always fancied himself a hero. A dashing, swashbuckling treasure-hunter who spends his time looking danger in the face and laughing. Only problem is, Scuttlebutt is a teensy bit of a coward. So he spends his days using his over-developed story-teller’s tongue to pretend to be an adventurer. Which, frankly, hasn’t work very well so far. But his fortunes change when he meets Soot, a talking (and surprisingly polite) creeper on a mission to end the bitterness between his explosive kind and humans. Soot wants to find the sorceress who gave him the ability to speak, and needs a guide to take him to her distant island home. Despite the many dangers, Scuttlebutt volunteers…once he learns of the fabulous treasure on the island, of course. Joined by a tough-as-nails barmaid, an exiled prince, a muddle-mouthed professor and a duck (or is it a chicken), Scuttlebutt and Soot embark on a daring adventure into the perilous wild. They’ll face odd-speaking assassins, cat-wielding pirates, dastardly traitors and pigs that can’t walk straight. All on their journey to Creeper’s Fuse, and the terrible secret that it holds. Author’s Note: This short story is for your reading pleasure. The characters in this "Minecraft Adventure Series" such as Steve, Endermen, Creeper or Herobrine...etc are based on the Minecraft Game coming from Minecraft ®/TM & © 2009-2013 Mojang / Notch

  • Author: Mark Mulle
  • Published: 2016-09-22 11:50:13
  • Words: 14443
Scuttlebutt Brightly and the Creeper’s Fuse, Book 1: The Adventurer From Bilge Scuttlebutt Brightly and the Creeper’s Fuse, Book 1: The Adventurer From Bilge