LNH: Alt.stralian Yarns #3: I'm Only Half-Written!

Tarq mitchell_crouch at caladrius.com.au
Wed Nov 29 13:40:26 PST 2006

#3 - 'I'm Only Half-Written!'
by Mitchell Crouch

Been-Out-Bush-For-Way-Too-Long Man dawdled up to the ruins of his
generations-old farmhouse. Nothing like a stampeding squad of hulkhens
to get the morning started. He looked over the wreckage, and then
turned to squint at the way they had gone. If it was his lucky day,
which apparently it wasn't, they wouldn't let the supersteer out.

He turned his attention back to his sobbing third cousin, City-Slicker
Gent, as he dug desperately through the rubble.

"Prob'ly not a good idea, mate," the fantastical farmer drawled.

City-Slicker Gent paid him no heed at all.

"I mean, if ya took the wrong plank'a wood outta there now, everything
else could just sorta fall down. Wouldn't wanna hurt ya missus, would

The grieving Gent stood up, and clocked him one in the jaw.

"Ow," noted Been-Out-Bush-For-Way-Too-Long Man, who was a firm believer
that violence on its own was not amusing.

He rubbed his bruised jaw, and continued to watch in silence for a
little while as the sun rose a little higher, and the ruinous pile got
smaller and smaller.

Eventually, BOBFWTLMan said, "Y'know, we could just call in some of the
superfolk to do all this for us, in a much safer manner. Ya do realise
that, right?"

City-Slicker Gent stopped, and seemed to consider this. He looked up,
hope in his eyes, and murmured, "You mean... you can pay people to do
things for you out here, too?"

Been-Out-Bush rolled his eyes, and whipped his ol' brick of a mobile
phone out. Punching in some monophonic keys, he held it up to his ear
and waited.

"Hello?" a voice on the other end greeted.

"G'day, mate. Been-Out-Bush-For-Way-Too-Long Man here. Wondering if I
could have a few minutes of ya time?"

"Oh, sure. Is this about --"

"No, no. Listen, the hulkhens have gotten out, and I reckon they're
makin' a beeline for the supersteer. Wonderin' if you could someone
over, if ya'd be so kind?"

"Sure thing, mate. They'll be over in a tick."

BOBFWTLMan put the phone back in his pocket, and took a seat on what
looked like it might have been the kitchen sink. "Bloody lucky we got
onto them, mate."


"Yeah. Didn't even know we had mobile phone coverage out 'ere, to be

If this was meant to comfort the uncomfortable City-Slicker, it didn't
go very far. Fortunately, the silence was broken by the dramatic
arrival of a caped figure on a dirtbike.

"Hello!" cried the figure as he dived off the bike. The bike continued
to speed up the trunk of a nearby eucalypt, before falling harmlessly
off and stalling itself.

The four-colour rolled before standing up in a dramatic pose, hands on
hips, and chest pushed out to highlight a browny-golden possum logo.
Most of his face was under a similarly-covered mask, cutting away to
reveal his nose and scraggly bush-beard. Although shorter and thinner
than most, it gave him a sort of distinguishing look, and it contrasted
nicely against the light grey[*] that made up most of his costume.

"Who's this nutter?" muttered a wide-eyed Gent.

"I," declared the hero, "am Possum-Man! On a dark stormy night, I was
bitten by a rabid, drunk possum, and now --"

"Interesting, very interesting. Really. Would you mind helping us move
this house? My wife is trapped under it."

Possum-Man, under his quasi-transparent yellow goggles, blinked. "You
want me to move a house?"

Been-Out-Bush-For-Way-Too-Long Man nodded. "Well, yeah. That's what we
called ya for."

"That's craziness! I can't move a house! It's, like..." Possum-Man made
large hand gestures before spluttering, "...a house!"

City-Slicker Gent picked up a half-finished wood carving, and growled,
"I swear to whatever jerk god you worship, I am going to hit you so
gosh darn hard...!"

"Okay, okay!" the worried hero held his hands up in a manner that was
probably meant to be calming. "No need for a violence, okay? It's not
like it's funny or anything. Golly."

The three of them got to work, carefully moving rubble away, and
calling out the missus' name.

After a few hours of solid labour, Possum-Man spoke up -- "Are you sure
you don't want to hear about how I became a hero? It's a very good
story, you know. Back from my frat days."

"We're sure," grunted Been-Out-Bush, who was still more worried about
his cattle than anything else. "I mean, sorry, Pos, but ya really
useless. We don't give a cane toad's about ya."

"Oh." Possum-Man stopped working to look downtrodden and angsty. "Is
there something else you'd rather have me doing instead?"

"Yeah. Ya wanna go check on the supersteer for me? See if you can find
any hulkhens while you're at it," he added as he gestured vaguely in
the direction of the paddock.

Possum-Man stood up quietly and began to trudge off. Suddenly, he
screamed out, "Oh no! It's a --"

[*] It occurred to me that I should point out that that's how we spell
'gray' in case anyone was thrown off by it, which I would be surprised
at, but still.


Yeah, it's not only half-written any more, but I chucked in a
cliff-hanger so you couldn't tell. ;) Ooh, narrative techniques, how I
love thee.

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