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The Choice of Your Life - gamer_extreme_101
"Not because I have to, but because I want to"
"No wonder nobody ever likes Onsuary! The rainstorms are horrible, and then bad things like this happen as a result!"
Beethro Budkin had just left school with his cousin Moorteo, and he was upset about the recent cancellation of the clarball season due to flooded fields. While it was normal to rain this time of year, the flood were hitting deeper mainland, and the clarball fields were so full of water the rafting team no longer needed to head to the river to practice.
"The one and only sport I'm good at, and they cancel it! I could have had a fun Thrisuary playing ball but now I have a whole season of boredom to deal with!"
"There must be something else that you can do, Beethro. I mean, it's not like clarball is the only thing you can do this summer. You can join the granghan team, you could..."
"Don't even talk to me about granghan. The last time I tried playing it I got outsmarted by a kid 6 levels below me! I'm not putting up with that again."
"You got beat by a level 3? That's the funn...."
"I swear by all that's sharp and dangerous that if you laugh at me, I will make you life miserable"
"Fine. Anyways, are you heading to my house now? My dad's home and he can cook us up some supper."
All the way to Moorteo's house, Beethro was surrounded by a cloud of gloom. He pictured all of the females surrounding him after he won the game in the dying seconds of the game. His could imagine all of the parties that would be going on 'til the wee hours of the morning. He could smell the fresh turf and feel the light of the sun shining down on him as the game starts.
Still, he knew that sulking about in a state of depression wasn't the answer to his problems. He needed something to occupy his recreational hours, and he knew the solution.
"I can get a job!" Beethro blurted out.
Moorteo stood there for a second, a bit dazed and confused. It wasn't that he was slow, but that he knew of something in the back of his head that related to that. After a minute or two, he had an epiphany.
"Hey! My uncle Klanghon secretly told my dad that he is looking for a exterminator to clean out his employer's Quinsuary castle. Apparently some vermin crept in there after he and his wife had a picnic down there and left the food down there. Roaches have been infesting the place and he fears they may want to head to higher ground"
"Let me get this straight. You are telling me that I should give up all thoughts of personal hygiene and feminine companionship, get some sort of primitive weapon, and become a DUNGER? Are you out of your mind?"
Now, when Beethro pictured an 'exterminator', he pictured a barbarian with a club in his hand shouting "Me hunt now. Me hungee". Dungers weren't thought too highly of in the Eighth, and he had really hoped to settle down with a beautiful girl, and a dunging lifestyle would not be able to fulfill those dreams.
"Are you kidding? Do you have any idea how much delvers get paid?"
"Let me guess. Roach meat?"
"Seriously," Moorteo said, looking around to make sure that no one could hear him, and then whispering something in his ear.
"Are you joking?!? If I was going to get paid that much, I'd drop out of school right now!" Beethro blurted out loud. He pictured precious minerals surrounding him, gorgeous women lined up outside his kingdom waiting to see him, and servants waiting on him hand and foot. It was as if his dreams for fame and fortune would be answered with a sword.
"Good. I can talk to my dad about it when we get home."
When they finally reached Moorteo's house, Moorteo went up to his dad with a smug, satisfied look on his face. It was as if he had won an academic award of some sort, and he needed to tell his dad about it.
"You'll be proud of me, dad! I told Beethro about uncle's job offer!" Moorteo said smugly.
"You did what? That was supposed to be a private contract! No one was supposed to know about it for over a week!"
"It was? I thought that... oh yeah. THAT was the secret contract. I, um, forgot?" Moorteo replied as the happiness in his face drained into disappointment.
"For goodness sakes, Moorteo. When will you ever learn to keep your large trap shut?"
"C'mon dad. It's not like I let everything slip," Moorteo responded.
"Really? Remember spoiling your mother's annual gift... five years in a row!"
By now, Beethro was extremely impatient.
"Hello? Remember me? I'm the one who wants the job in the first place!" Beethro exclaimed.
"Well, since Moorteo let the bunny out of the bag, I guess I'll have to get you the job. I can talk to Klanghon and secure it for you. If I'm lucky, I can get him to supply you a temporary sword until you can buy a higher quality one.
"As for you, Moorteo, have you learned your lesson?"
"Sure have, father, but don't worry. You'll love the new watch I'm giving you next week! It's... aww crap,"
Moorteo's father was shaking his head in his palm now. He let Beethro leave and told him to be ready to head down to the basement in a week's time.
"Large supply of leaf juice... standard issue sword which I can get you... backpack of some sort... doesn't sound too bad, I guess," he thought as he walked home.
After getting everything ready for him in advance, Moorteo's father met him at the entrance to the basement.
"You should be all ready to go now. Here's a sword I managed to get, but it's just sufficient enough to finish the job. Pretty flimsy, but it should adequately protect you," Moorteo's father cautioned.
"What do you mean 'adequately' protect?" questioned Beethro. "If I have to go down and fight a bunch of ugly and nasty creatures then I want something that would make me feel a bit safer!"
"Too late for that. Just remember to have your sword between the monster and you, and you should be fine. Figure out the rest yourself!"
Just then he heard a large door slamming, and he realized that he was trapped in until the job was done.
"Well, aren't you nice," he sarcastically commented. As he looked around, he saw something gray in the distance. As he moved towards it, he was surprised at what he saw.
“Holy Hannah! These roaches are as big as I am!”
By reflex, his sword flung out of his hands as he went to cower behind a wall. In his state of cowardice, he prayed that the sword will mystically hit the roach and leave him safe. Luckily, fate was on his side, and the roach ended up running towards the flying sword as if to commit suicide.
“Stupid roach! Maybe this delving won't be so hard after all!” Beethro said. With this fresh boost of confidence to his ego, he carried on deeper into the basement.
All went well until he came upon a very large yellow door. At first, he decided to ignore it and carry one, be he soon realized that behind that door stood the rest of the basement.
“Well, this is stupid. How in the name of the Eighth am I supposed to open this door?”
Seeing no visible crack between the top of the door and the roof, he then proceeded to search around the room for a switch of some kind. After a minute or two, he came upon a yellow sphere hidden between two walls.
“This must be the switch. Let me try hitting this and see if the bloody thing will open”
He hit it with his palm, but nothing happened.
“Odd. Maybe I have to hit somewhere specific. You never know with this newfangled technology these days”
He managed to crawl behind it and proceeded to hit it with his hand some more. Still nothing. He started working his way around the orb, hitting it as it went, but nothing happened.
By now, Beethro had lost his patience. In a fit of anger, he ran up towards the orb and kicked it as hard as he could. Of course, the sphere was made of very solid materials, and thus his foot ended up taking most of the blow. Even more angry at the sphere, he then threw his sword at it and ran to the corner to cry.
Of course, when he ran away, he never saw that when the sword contacted the sphere, the door opened. While Beethro bawled, a set of stairs stared at him from the other side of the dirt.
“Stupid door! Why do architect's have to be so mean? Maybe if I pound on the original door hard enough they'll let me back in! Let me just get my sword and...”
As he stared at where the door was, he was so shocked that he stood in awe for ten minutes. Suddenly, his eyes met a lone goblin in the corner. It was sitting there with a large piece of wood.
“A goblin? But is he a friend or a foe? Maybe I'd better ask him...”
While that probably wasn't the brightest idea he could have had, he picked up his sword and decided to go up to him. Before he could get the chance, he saw the goblin walking towards him holding something wooden in his hand.
“Er, pardon me, mister, but I thought you might like to buy a wooden rabbit. You see, I need the greckles to pay the goblin ki...”
“Rabbits! I love rabbits! Here, I'll buy 3 of them. Here's twenty greckles for your trouble.”
“Why, thank you, mister. It was very generous of you.”
As Beethro headed to the the stairs, he could see the goblin heading in the opposite direction. He wasn't phased, mostly because of his fond affection for rabbits, but he continued up the stairs, hoping that he wouldn't be penalized for not killing it.
At the very top of the stairs was Moorteo's father, gasping for air trying to contain the news until Beethro had arrived.
“Excellent job, Beethro! Klanghon says that he hasn't seen his basement this clean in ages, so he's prepared to offer you a bonus for your work!”
“Are you serious?!? I'm already getting payed enough as it is, but he wants to add even more? Nice!”
“You really are a natural, Beethro. Have you thought of becoming a professional dungeon exterminator?” Moorteo's father asked inquisitively.
“Not really, but I'd have to think about it”
A week later, Beethro was leaving school on a cool Onsuary afternoon with Moorteo just as he had done two weeks earlier. This time however, they were astonished to see that Jennivar Olarak was running towards Beethro with a very excited look on her face. Now, Beethro had a crush on her, so he had to contain his ecstasy for a minute or two until she left.
“Beethro! The season is on again! You have a chance to play clarball!”
“Are you serious! I had never imagined!”
“Yes! Go back inside the school and talk to the coach. Practice is starting right away! I also thought that me and you could get together after the practice for some fun. Sounds good?”
Now Beethro had always had a weak mind for beauty, and the way that Jenniver looked at him was impossible to resist. Still, Beethro knew what he had to do.
“Jenniver, as much as I hate to tell you this, I'm not playing ball this year. I'm becoming a dungeon exterminator, and I go off for training in less than a month”
“You're kidding, right? You want to become a dunger? And I wanted to be together with you? Please tell me that your parents are making you do this.”
“Ahem,” coughed Moorteo, seeing an opportunity ahead of him. “I'm not doing anything tonight.” He said, raising his eyebrows and smiling in an attempt to show affection.
“I'm didn't decide to become an exterminator because I have to, it's because I want to.”
Beethro could see the hurt that he had caused her. Her eyes had grown dim and you could see her face grow all sad. As much as he wanted to be with her, he knew that the life of the exterminator was more important to him.
“Well, I admire a person who does what he wants, but this sure is hard to talk. Promise that you'll find me so we can get together when you quit the extermination business, Beethro,” she said. It seemed as if she could live with his decision.
“If I do,” Beethro told her.
“We could head to that nice restaurant on the outside of town! Very romantic!” Moorteo said, trying to break the two apart.
It worked, as Beethro headed towards his house and Jenniver to her friends just outside the school. It was then that Beethro realized the meaning of his words.
“Not because I have to, but because I want to,” Beethro said, smiling. He knew that the right choice had been made.