Choose Your Own Misadventure: Tripping at a Costume Party


Scandinavian folklore holds that some forest deities can be appeased by a sacrifice of three young maids wearing crowns of birch. Many proto-Germanic tribes believed that iron was the only thing which could bind the Fae. Some Native American tribes thought that creatures of the forest could not cross solid rock. That movie Aliens had those dudes that burnt some shit with flamethrowers.

Remember that? That was rad as shit; let's go with that one.

You heft your bulk back up onto your hands, then spring forward, pushing the monster back with your sick calf muscles (you got way into pilates there for a while; it was a thing). The forest spirit is surprised by your attack. It stumbles backward, and sharply contacts the counter with its head. It seems to be stunned for the moment, holding a wreath of protective branches in front of its mockery of a human face.

"Kkkkaaaaahhhmmm ddddddooouuuuunnnnn," it threatens.

"Is it getting a little fire in here?" you ask the monster, seizing the hairspray with one hand, your lighter with the other, "or is it just your face?"

The pop and sizzle of burning sap rings in your ears, even after you slip out the side window of the uh ... the haunted forest, you guess that was? Weird that it had a toilet and all, but hey -- they're tree-monsters, not savages.

"These are civilized beings, after all, not some filthy wood-apes. What? Oh, God, there's one right behind me, isn't there?"

You seek cover behind a low hedge, that you're pretty sure isn't animated with the life-force of the woods, but looks like it would be kind of a pussy, even if you're wrong.

"I'll fuck you up, bush," you whisper harshly into the leaves, just in case.

Suddenly, a rustling. Your every muscle freezes, trying in vain to refocus their energies toward rendering you invisible. The soft, fleshy snap of a new branch, breaking. Then the entirety of the hedge sheltering you is abruptly uprooted, split in twain, and hurled away. A towering Sasquatch looms above you, its mouth sticky with slaver, its eyes wild and roving.

Something warm and wet splashes across your face, making your eyes burn and your throat constrict. That's when you see the wound in its abdomen, spraying foul, fallow blood at every turn. A wicked-edged spear, minuscule compared to the massive bulk of the beast itself, juts out from the gash.

If you try to reason with the Sasquatch, turn to page 4.

If you attack the beast, hoping to exploit the little known weakness of the Sasquatch race, turn to page 5.

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Robert Brockway

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