Challenge: Take a daily task or a niche job and give it a twist, the story must either be in first person point of view OR include one strange item and the story must be over 500 words long.
I decided to pick a strange item: a strange amulet with strange powers.
“Hello and welcome back to W3, AKA Weird Wordly Wonders! I’m Ruby and today I’ll tell you about some weird jewelry that sounds fake but is actually real!”
Lily touched their amulet, just to make sure that it was still fastened on their shirt. Of course it was, they told themselves, otherwise they would be on the floor. Still, it was like an instinct, akin to making sure that your phone was still in your pocket. They shook their head, readjusted their headphones’ strap — it would not do to drop them in the dish water — and resumed scrubbing a particularly dirty plate.
“While rings like these are usually family heirloom, other strange jewelry is more often untied to any family or place.”
Lily snorted. Neither was correct about theirs. The neighbors upstairs were fighting again, so they stomped a few timed. The fighting subsided, if only for a while. They would be at it again soon.
“For example, the Forlorn Pendant, much like the Ring of Solitary Sandpiper, works only in solitude, as it draws its energy from the feeling of loneliness, although in contrast to the aforementioned ring, the Forlorn Pendant is more often used to refurbish abandoned houses — at least when in the hands of people who are into that sort of thing. During its existence, it has also been used for mind control to make friends — an action which has, as you could guess, backfire once the user no longer felt lonely.”
So far, the podcast episode had been disappointing. Nevertheless, Lily’s phone lay on a countertop beyond their reach — had they had a spider-themed pendant, they might have been able to reach it with some Spiderman-esque action — so they kept listening. Once they would be done with this batch of dishes, they could go back down for a break and change the podcast if they still felt like it. Perhaps in the meantime Ruby would actually tell about either their amulet or something spider-themed and where one could acquire one.
“Amulets are among the most common of jewelry of strange powers, partly because they are easy to carry around and, when worn properly, don’t get in the way the same way rings or bracelets do. As such, they are also easier to hide and can, depending on the amulet’s powers, still be used when hidden.”
That was actually correct about Lily’s amulet. After their class had read Lord of the Flies, they had had to hide the pendant (and not use their powers at school) because children were idiots.
The spider theme would’ve been more useful there, as well, Lily mused as they glared at a permanently tea-stained mug. Their own only allowed them to see if bullies were nearby, but in a small, enclosed space it did not help much. There were only so many places to hide in at school, and most of them were toilets, half of them out of their reach.
“The Amulet of Fly, however, is an oddball among them, as it grants the wielder the ability to summon and command flies and have their abilities, such as walking on all solid surfaces. This amulet has been passed down in a family for generations. Our writer, Emmy, actually managed to contact the current wielder, but unfortunately the only reply was a wish to be left alone.”
Lily smirked. Serves you right.
The batch of dishes was done before the podcast episode, so Lily, after stomping a few times to make sure their neighbors knew that they could still hear them, walked to the wall and down it to the floor to shut the playback off. They would finish the episode when they would feel like tackling the next set of dishes — an unsteady pile of kettles — and hope that the next one would be more interesting.