Round-Robin Story

Chatterbox: Inkwell

Round-Robin Story

Round-Robin Story

I read on TNO's rant about how the Chatterbox could be made better something about a round-robin story, so does anyone want to make one? *looks up hopefully* 

submitted by Lena G., age 11
(January 17, 2009 - 6:25 pm)

Answer: the sensible Captain V doesn't believe such silly wives' tales. He's not a very superstitious guy. Good question, though. I guess we didn't think of that.

Um, I've got a question: "Tarus was more concerned about Romania than himself"? Just wondering what THAT was meant to entail... :)

The white-faced captives were tied around a pole. Tarus had been pushed against Romania and they were now standing shoulder-to-shoulder.

"They don't speak English," said Captain V loudly, listening to the inhuman utterings. "We're in luck."

"In luck, Captain?" said the chief smoothly, in an impeccable lanuguage that was indubitably English. "Why, I believe it's the other way around."


Tarus groaned. This was it. They were doomed. Gone. Hopeless. This was the end. It was all over. He put his hand to his foreead in defeat.

Wait! He had just moved his hand! But how... he glanced at Gwindolyn, on his other side. Her knife was as sharp as her tongue, apparently. The razor-mouthed girl nodded and sent him a quick wink that clearly told him You're welcome. But in the name of the fearsome Megalodon, Tarus, shut your kisser, and stop shooting me those grateful looks; we don't need any undesired attention. Tarus acknowledged her unspoken words with a shadow of a head inclination.

All right, my sister is insisting that I let her use the computer, so I should probably dash off now. I wish I could exit in a more dramatic fashion, like say, Romania is being dangled by her toes over a boiling cauldron, but she says she wants it in ten minutes... why am I letting a seven-year-old push me around? This is so sad.

submitted by Mary W., age 11, Bordentown, NJ
(February 15, 2009 - 2:41 pm)

People who faint in boats are not very helpful....  they need alll the help they can get! (Even from Mrs. Snooty)Laughing

submitted by Phoenix
(February 15, 2009 - 8:31 pm)

Where is every one these days?????

submitted by Phoenix
(February 17, 2009 - 9:55 am)

Right here, but good heavens, how are we gonna get Tarus and his buddies outta this mess? *grits teeth* Okay, here goes... I hope I'm allowed to use magic in this story... and one more thing: is anyone else getting the sense that Tarus is gonna eventually fall in love with Romania, or is that just Kipin the Nearly Hopeless Romantic? Just curious.


   Great, thought Tarus. I'm free, Gwindolyn's free, but what good does it do us? We're in the middle of a gaggle of cannibals that want to roast us alive and gnaw our bones. What on Earth are we going to do?

   The answer came from Romania. With both hands lashed to the pole behind her, she had managed to pull a small, round pendant from a chain around her neck and grip it discreetly in her teeth. She caught Tarus looking at her, and made a motion with her head that clearly said, Gimme the knife!

   Keeping his hands behind his back in hopes that the cannibals would overlook his actions, he took the dagger from an unwilling Gwindolyn and began to saw at Romania's bonds with it. In seconds, the sharp little blade had sliced through the coarse rope, freeing the merchant girl's hands. She gave Tarus a silent nod of thanks, then let the spherical bauble fall from her mouth to her palm. Stepping boldly away from the pole, she thrust the pendant into the air and shouted, "Arydd Lenaencrimae!"


Hmm, I wonder what the pendant does? Up to you lovely people to decide...

submitted by Commander Kip, age 16, Back from the D
(February 17, 2009 - 11:26 pm)

Okay, good, I'm not the only one! Yes, OF COURSE Tarus ALREADY madly likes Romania! I mean, they're both stubborn braggarts half the time and witty heroes the other half... as they say, DUUUUH! But let's have a limit on any romance we may write... half the people probably don't want to hear about it so no more than two long paragraphs or a few short paragraphs (roughly, not exactly), and nothing too mushy. It might also be best to save that until AFTER this miserable crew somehow thwarts an island full of ruthless cannibals... in the middle of the ocean... with no boat... so yes, I think we can all agree it's kind of looking bleak. Good thing Romania's smarter than I originally thought.

Um, can the cannibal king know some magic, too?

At the very same moment that Romania's pendant flew into the air, Sir the chief (kind of redundant...) yelled words muted by the explosion that followed Romania's desperate toss (because we all know how much Kipin loves explosions... *eye roll*) but nonetheless powerful, because while Romania's produced a ring of fire pinning the cannibals in, Sir's resulted in a tidal wave of controlled horror that engulfed the crew tied around the pole in a cocoon of ocean, with air inside.

Wish I could write more, but I think my mom wants me to eat dinner... sorry.

submitted by Mary W., age 11, Bordentown, NJ
(February 18, 2009 - 5:51 pm)

I shall add to this. Mmmhm. 


The look of pure terror on her face when Romania saw the water around her was stunning to Tarus. All it was was water, couldn't they just walk through it? He picked up the knife, since they couldn't leave the other crew members, and began cutting people free. But glancing up, he noticed that all the rest of the untied crew were giving the cocoon a wide berth. After a few moments, he finally asked why. It was Romania who answered. 

"If I go through there, this entire island will burst into flames."

"What? Why?"

Romania indicated the fire farther out. "My medallion. It has the power of flame, and I can control it, but mix it with water, and it... Explodes, almost. Magical water, regular water doesn't do much. But this water was touched by magic, and the medallion must stay far away."

Tarus wondered why they didn't just leave without Romania, but he wasn't sure he would do it himself, and he knew that the captain would be unwilling to leave behind a opportunity for making money off of a ransom. 

"Maybe you could leave the medallion behind."

"Leave it behind, so they can get their hands on it? Likely." She was obviously more prepared to stay here forever than that. 

And so they stayed. Food was passed through the cocoon, and they were surrounded by water, which seemed to always be fresh. They had been tied up fairly widely, before they released each other, so they had quite a bit of room. The cocoon seemed to be sound-proof, so they felt safe talking without being overheard. They stayed there for a week, and for some reason the cannibals didn't bother them. 

 One night, Tarus couldn't sleep. He just lay there, staring up at the ever-moving water above and around them, that glowed slightly in the darkness. Phosphorus, or something like that. He'd seen it before. But it couldn't occupy his attention for long. He kept thinking of a tale he'd heard as a small child. It was just a fairy tale, he knew that. But he kept thinking; if he had heard about this medallion as a child, he'd've thought that it was a fairy tale. So why should this be? He'd been thinking about this for the past three nights. Finally, he decided. It would either work, or it wouldn't. There was only one way to find out. He got up, walked over to the edge of the cocoon, made sure everyone else was asleep, so they couldn't hear his silliness, and closed his eyes, straining to remember the words from so long ago. 

"Ooth, Sooth, Eltama Day

Aloof, Proof, Shaltada Way.

Twelve Ights and Wen, Selvety-Four,

Harpada Glen, All these and more.

I was born on the day of the twenty-first night

Born on the day, and before the first light.

You are sworn to help all those that in need

Call on you for help, call on you indeed." 

He stood there, arm stretched out above himself, eyes closed, standing there, and a great wind washed over him. Flecks of water hit him, and when he opened his eyes, the cocoon was gone. And, when he looked around, so were they. 

They were still on an island, that was quite plain, but it was a quite different island. Grinning at the success of his incantation, he went to wake up his fellow crew members. And Romania, who hardly counted as crew. 


Interesting situation? That calls for more magic, of course! 

submitted by Starfire
(February 19, 2009 - 5:57 pm)

((And also no smut. Though hopefully that was obvious...))

"GREAT!" bellowed Tarus, noticing with dread that the walls of their watery cage were shrinking, slowly but surely. "What NOW?"

"We escape," said Romilda, curiously calm despite the bizzareness of the situation. "Or drown."

"Not helping," growled Tarus.

"Obviously the chief will have some way of preventing us from swimming away. But perhaps we could... Fly?"

"What?" Tarus turned to look, momentarily distracted by this.

"Well, look," said Romilda, pointing upwards. Tarus looked, then grinned.

"Cloudsprites!" he said.

The mischievous, ethereal creatures swooped overhead. Romilda searched through her pockets quickly, and pulled out a long, thin, triangular whistle. "This'll bring them straight to us," she said happily. 

submitted by TNÖ, age Deep Space, 15
(February 19, 2009 - 6:19 pm)

*sarcasm*Ahh, the sweet sounds of confliction. The best thing to hear in the morning. */sarcasm* Fortunately, since TNÖ hasn't actually pulled them out of the thing yet, we simply assume that they air sprites refused to come. If that's alright with all.

submitted by Starfire
(February 20, 2009 - 9:05 am)


So anyhow.

They're on some different island, somehow, because Tarus unknowingly did magic, etc. Great.

"Where the blazes are we?" blurted Gwindolyn as the crew blinked and looked around. "Another blasted island?"

"So it would appear," said Tarus proudly, his ego a bit blown up by his success.

"Wait a trice," said Romania, looking around and gasping. "This isn't- it couldn't be- Tarus, what on Earth did you DO?!"

Tarus related his story.

Romania seemed about ready to either faint or smack him. "Tarus," she said, sounding majorly agitated. "When you so ingeniously spoke ancient magical words, but didn't suspect for a moment that maybe something really, really awful would happen? For example, maybe, um, transport us to Laerehte?"

"What?" said a few people, including Tarus and the Captain.

Romania looed shocked. "Laerehte is a horrible, horrible place. It transforms into a terror at night, shedding all these beautiful tropical plants and everything. The island itself rears up, becoming a great water beast, and no one has ever survived a night on it except for one person."

"Who?"\"How do you know all this?"\"Are you saying the island comes to life?"\"What are you talking about?"\"That's ridiculous, not to mention impossible."

Romania took a deep, shuddering breath. "I was born here, and that person was me."

Eeeek, wish I could write more but my Internet time is limited.

submitted by Mary W., age 11, Bordentown, NJ
(February 20, 2009 - 5:07 pm)

Waitwaitwait! What just happened, did TNO and Starfire post at the same time?... or something?... *is confuzzled* Hmm. Somebody else can go next then, while Kipin gets her bearings. HI, TNO!!! *tackles*

submitted by Commander Kip, age 16, Zraeland, Irlic
(February 20, 2009 - 5:09 pm)

We need more writers to add to this story!!


Tarus couldn't place his feelings about what Romania had just proclaimed.  She didn't seem like the kind of girl who could survive an island turning into a monster as a child.  Something about her story didn't ring true.  But what it was, he didn't know.  But magic island or not, night was falling and the pirates knew they were going to have to find some shelter, and soon.  Tarus wondered if there were any wild animals on this island, other than the one they were standing on. 

As if reading his mind, the captain said, "Okay, men and women, we need to find some sort of shelter on this island for the night.  Who knows what kind of wild animals roam free here?"

"Actually Captain," replied Romania instantly, "none.  This island doesn't have the needed nutrients for them to survive here."

"What do you mean?" cried Tarus increduosly. "Look at all this vegetation!"

"Again I tell you, Mr. Tarus," said Romania impatiently, "this is all a hallucination, and what we happen to be standing on right now is the back of a Sea Serpent!"  The crew stared at her increduosly.  Was this the same girl who hid at the cries of porpoises, claiming them to be ghosts?  She had lived in the lap of luxury until now,  where had she found a spine?  Most of them still couldn't grasp the fact that she was a survivor of  Sea Serpent attack.

Still Tarus couldn't shake the feeling that Romania was lying about something.  But not wanting to embarress himself in front of the crew, he pushed his uneasy feeling to the back of his mind and offered to go with a group of pirates looking for shelter. 


I'm leaving you guys to figure out what Romania is lying about.

submitted by Phoenix
(February 25, 2009 - 3:30 pm)

 Hi, I love writing and couldn't help myself carrying on. Sorry if anything dosen't make sense!

I hope this is all right...


It looked like any other perfect island paradise. Sandy beaches, tall palms, flowering plants. Yet they did not see or hear any birds, not even flies. It was as if the island was a huge graveyard, silent, but with trees, and grass.  Our small troop of ragged leftovers from the ship crawled though the thick underbrush. Due to the fact we were surrounded by amazing edible plants, one of the crew dug up a plant that had edible roots. As soon as the plant left the ground, the ground came up as a clump of clay with it. The plant disintegrated into sand suddenly when he had picked it. The sailors looked in awe at the sand in his hand; he dropped it as if it was on fire.
“There’s truth in what the lass said,” one then exclaimed with a shudder.  “We must get off this Island soon!”
“Nay, if there is a Serpent, the water is the last place we want to be.”
“You superstitious cowards!” Another shouted, “What’s wrong with a little mystery!”
Tarus stared at the spot where the clay had pulled away, underneath it was a patch of glistening black scales. All perfectly fitted together, shiny, alive.
                “Romania, was right!” Tarus whispered to himself.
As soon as the words had left his mouth the ground began to shake. It wasn’t like an earthquake, it was like a creature getting up after years of sleep.
“We must get back!” he screamed as the shaking grew worse.
The crew flung themselves at the faint trail they had made, racing to get back to the shore as soon as they could. One of them tripped and Tarus raced to him, “Quickly,” he cried, “we must get away.” He helped the pirate up, and the two off them darted to catch up with the rest. Finally, after what seemed like forever, the shaking stopped, but the party continued running for the beach where the rest and Romania were waiting for news of shelter.
                “Thank go you and here, quickly we found some vines, tie yourself to trees so you will float when the island gets swept away.” Romania ran up to them with coils of vines in her hands, she shoved a coil at each of them.
                “What’s happening?” Tarus asked, when he saw the rest of the crew tied to palm trees.
Romania looked at him with grave eyes, “The serpent, it’s diving”.


If the vines come loose and they get sucked under with it when it dives, feel free!

I'm really sorry if there are any mistakes!

submitted by Kendra P., age 13, B.C. Canada
(February 25, 2009 - 8:25 pm)

Ho-hum. Wouldn't it be sort of lousy for Tarus and the rest of the gang if maybe the part of the serpent they tied themselves to just so happened to be... uh... say, its nose? That might be kind of interesting.

The serpent's muscles aternatedly tensed and relaxed. It smelled something it hadn't for almost seventeen years. Human. Near.

It sniffed and immediately go a huge whiff of human. On top of him. Not an awful lot, not like the whole tribe here years ago, but wait... there was a hint of Norhagon blood there. Delectable. The beast stuck out its massive tongue and swept the whole lot of them in without bothering to chew.


Dear me. I got a bit carried away there. I'll leave it up to you charming people to get the crew out of this fix. We all love challenges, right...? *sheepish expression mixed with downright laziness*

submitted by Mary W., age 11, Bordentown, NJ
(February 26, 2009 - 4:36 pm)

Thanks a lot Mary Liz!!!  Now people have to do some creative writing to fix this problem!!!  Namely, Me.


It was a funny sensation, being swallowed.  The dark, slimy, warmish enterior of the Esophagus was somewhat nauesiating.  Tarus observed all this with an eerie calm.  Probably, the Sea Serpent didn't bother to chew us because, we are just a tidbit for it.  And the reason for this rather creepy calmness is my body shutting down.  I wonder how the rest of the crew is faring, being swallowed.  He kept thinking these thoughts, calmly, one after another, in a quite orderly fashion. He felt no terror, no fear, nothing except a feeling that he was going to live with his Maker soon. Hours seemed to pass, as Tarus  rested in the throat of the Sea Serpent.  The calmness and quiet lulled Tarus into a peaceful sleep, sure that it was his last.


Tarus had the funniest sensation of moving  up.  Which, as everyone knows, is unnatural, when you're stuck in the throat of a Sea Serpent when you're supposed to be going down.  Groggily, Tarus opened his eyes and discovered that he was indeed rising upward.  Suddenly, he was dumped out of the cavernous mouth of the Sea Serpent onto its scaly back.  Bewildered, Tarus looked around.  Almost the whole crew was lying, blinking up at the bright daylight.  As Tarus watched, the rest of the crew fell out of the Sea Serpent's mouth.  When the entire crew lay on the Serpent's back, the serpent spoke!  

"Dear Me," it said, in a rasping voice, "I haven't had such a rich meal in quite awhile.  I'll just have to eat you one at a time.  Cumbersome, but easier on  my poor stomach."  With that, the Serpent swiveled his head around and again became the island Laethros, before the crew's astonished eyes.


If this grosses some people out, I'm extremly sorry.  How else would you save people who had been swallowed by a mythical beast??  If you have any ideas, you can use them instead of this one.

submitted by Phoenix
(February 27, 2009 - 8:59 pm)

S'okay, Phoenix, that wasn't so gross. And the only other way I can think of is even grosser than that, so I shall refrain from boring you with the details.


So... how do they escape, I wonder? More magic? Romania is certainly full of surprises...

submitted by Commander Kip, age 16, Zraeland, Irlic
(February 28, 2009 - 9:06 am)