The Hundred-Acre Games
[Photo by Oxana Lyashenko on Unsplash]
It’s time for the drawing. “Now, let us begin, or we shall be here all day,” Rabbit says as he crosses to the glass ball with all the names, each roughly scrawled in crayon. Rabbit reaches in, digs his hand deep into the ball with a great rustling and bustling and pulls out a slip of paper.
“Let it not be me,” Winnie-the-Pooh says deep inside his fluff-filled head. “Think it over, think it under. Think it true. It’s not me. It’s not me.”
Rabbit crosses back to the podium, smooths the slip of paper, holds it close to his eyes for a moment, wrinkles his nose, and then reads out the name in a clear voice. And it’s not Pooh.
“I volunteer as tribute!” Winnie-the-Pooh finds himself saying before he even knows what he’s saying.
“Why did you say that about Christopher Robin?” Eyore looked even more devastated than usual.
“Well,” said Pooh, scrunching up his forehead thoughtfully. “When you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.”
“Once and awhile someone amazing comes along, and here I am!” said Tigger, brandishing his trident. “Come on, someone challenge me! Challenge the next winner of the Hundred Acre Games! You there! Bear! Come on! Show me what you’re made of!”
Winnie-the-Pooh looked away demurely. “Fluff?”
“You’re going to die in the Game,” Tigger said. “I’ll kill you myself.”
“It must be Pooh,” Owl said. “Don’t you see? If anyone can lead the people, it’s you, you silly old bear. Show Christopher Robin that this reign of terror has gone on long enough.”
“Me?” Winnie-the-Pooh rubbed his tummy thoughtfully. “But I’m just a Bear of Very Little Brain.”
“Exactly,” said Owl, puffing himself up. “A Bear of Very Little Brain is exactly what we need right now.”
Kanga brings the scissors down hard against Tigger’s throat. There’s a rip and shread, and fluffy white cotton pours out of the stripey neck. Looks like Tigger’s top wasn’t made of rubber after all.
Kanga looked like she was going to kill Pooh right there on the Cornucopia, but turned and hopped away toward the woods instead. “Just this time,” she said “For Roo!”
Winnie-the-Pooh hauled himself up, and regarded the carnage of felt and stuffing all around him. “I wonder what Piglet is doing," thought Pooh. "I wish I were there to be doing it, too.”
Jadzia Axelrod is an author, an illustrator, and a world changer. Throughout her eventful life she has also been a circus performer, a puppeteer, a graphic designer, a sculptor, a costume designer, a podcaster and quite a few other things that she’s lost track of but will no doubt remember when the situation calls for it.She is the writer and producer of “The Voice Of Free Planet X” podcast, were she interviews stranded time-travelers, low-rent superheroes, unrepentant monsters and other such creature of sci-fi and fantasy, as well as the podcasts “Aliens You Will Meet” and “Fables Of The Flying City.” The story started in “Fables Of The Flying City” is concluded in The Battle Of Blood & Ink, a graphic novel published by Tor.She is not domestic, she is a luxury, and in that sense, necessary.