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We are in an interesting situation here at the Monastery. Here we are, several hundred of us (thousands if you count the lurkers), pretending to be monks of a strange hybrid of technology and religion, all living together. Do you realize what an utterly silly premise this is? Furthermore, I'm sure everyone here has lived with other people at some point in their lives. You lived with your parents, friends, significant others, etc. Were they easy to live with? Even though we love 'em dearly, our housemates sometimes get on our nerves. Consider again the Monastery! Imagine if we all DID live together! Imagine the chaos that would ensue! I considered this and came up with a few possible scenes.

Petruchio stood at a wooden countertop slicing carrots with AgentM. "I still don't see why we're always the ones who have to prepare the food!" Agent M complained. "This is the fourth time in the past week!"

"Would you rather be the one shoveling the contents of the collective latrine out over the cliff?" Petruchio asked indignantly. "There are always a lot worse things to be doing!"

"But I've never seen Tilly or Turnstep doing this, I've been slicing these damn carrots ever since I came to the monastery as an initiate!"

"They don't slice carrots, because they're saints." Petruchio said gently. "They have much more important things to do. Besides, you should be glad you don't have their job. All the work and hassle of running the administration of the monastery. It'd be work work work, you'd never get to take a break!"

"Sure, Mustapha."

"Huh?"

"Oh, nothing." The pair continued to slice carrots until japhy brought a load of cabbages in a wicker basket he carried on his back.
In the deepest of the catacombs beneath the Monastery, past a dank stone passageway poorly lit with flickering torches and rank with mildew sat a locked wooden door covered with a wrought iron grating. Moving the grating was near to impossible. The lock was so covered in rust that it had become useless. The hinges too were practically welded together from age. Behind the door however was a brightly lit (yet smoky) room with wood paneling. Nobody came through the catacomb passageway anymore except for the newbies. The main way in and out is through the secret passageway behind the bookcase.

Merlyn took a cigar from the ornately decorated humidor and aligned his cue stick with the expected trajectory of the balls in the felt padded pool table. Chromatic sipped from a snifter of brandy and waited impatiently for him to finish setting up his shot. Ovid puffed on a pipe in a high backed armchair before the roaring fire. "I should really read more of Huxley's work" he thought to himself. He pulled his monogrammed terrycloth robe closer about him as he opened the book and began to read. There was a slight humming of air as vroom teleported into the center of the room.

"Couldn't find the secret passageway again?" asked jcwren turning from his oil painting momentarily as he dabbed the brush in a goblet of water.

"You should be careful, Vroom" Merlyn said making his shot and sinking two of the pool balls into a pocket. "If you keep teleporting around like that, the other monks will realize what powers they really get at sainthood. " Chromatic took the sunken balls from their pockets and began to juggle them with telekinesis.

"Yeah yeah, whatever. Remember, I define the laws of physics within these walls. I literally can do anything." Vroom retorted. As if to prove his point, a snow leopard that had not been there before walked past the pool table over to the bearskin rug and went to sleep. "Anyway, is the Playstation 2 working yet?"

On the high rampart of the Monastery, ybiC trudged through the lightly falling snow. He shivered and stopped at a fire tended by Amelinda wrapped in a thick wool hooded cloak. "I still don't understand why we as a monastery need to have people on guard duty. Look at you. You're tending a fire used to heat a pot of boiling oil that's been boiling for weeks! Does anyone ever attack us? Have we ever needed to dump boiling oil on anyone?"

Amelinda drew back her hood and looked out across the fields below the stone wall. "Even our sworn enemy Bravismore wasn't much of a threat." She looked at his rotted head impaled upon an iron spike set in the stone. "See, we need to have an internal guard force, because that's where the corruption comes from. Guarding this wall against these lowly farmers down there..." She gestured with her hand "...is quite of a waste of time."

ybiC sat down with his back against the wall next to her, warmed by the fire. "What I don't get, is that if Vroom is really as all powerful as he says he is, why can't he put the monestary on an island somewhere, or at least move it to somewhere where it doesn't snow." he muttered. "Does he know how hard guard duty is in a blizzard?"

"Does he know how hard it is to keep a pot of boiling oil hot in a blizzard?" Amelinda laughed. ybiC sighed and rose, and began to walk again across the rampart with his sword unsheathed.

Would living at the monastery be a good thing? Would we all get along, or would it only be a matter of time before someone was found hanging from the rafters in the banquet hall. How do we get cabbages and carrots in the middle of winter? Will Agent M ever stop slicing the carrots? Will the guards ever get to come in and have someone else tend the boiling oil? Watch for more episodes of "Life at the Monastery" coming soon! Can you all tell that I finished with finals today? I now have a lot of free time. I intend to spend it well by posting here.

~W

In reply to Life at the Monastery. Chapter 1 by wombat

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