It isn’t every day you learn there’s a lost city hidden somewhere in your county. But according to Violet Crepuscular, the lost city of Driphdrash, ages old, is hidden in the heart of Scurveyshire. Or is it the liver?
“Legend has it,” she confides in the readers of her epic romance, Oy, Rodney, “that in addition to whole rooms filled with gold and jewels and collectible figurines, the ruins of Driphdrash contain fantastic secrets the possession of which will give their discoverer the power to rule the world. And everyone in Scurveyshire wants to rule the world.”
Virtually the entire community has dropped whatever they were doing and gone on the hunt for Driphdrash. No one talks about anything but what they’ll do, once they rule the world. “I’ll make everyone do calisthenics!” “I’ll ban ginger beer! I never liked it, anyway.” “I’ll order everyone to get married to everyone else!” And so on.
Rumor of the frenzied search for the lost city has reached the Queen’s ears. She sends the Earl of Peedlebury to investigate. He promptly disappears under the vicar’s backyard wading pool. But the Queen has already forgotten that she sent him. Reminded by her Equerry, Lord Dromedary, Her Majesty denies ever having known the Earl of Peedlebury. This is generally the wisest course to follow.
After two full days of frantic labor, every square foot of Scurveyshire has been thoroughly searched, to no avail.
“It ain’t that big a shire, that’s the problem with it,” opines the American adventurer, Willis Twombley. He has vowed to re-establish the Akkadian Empire if he’s the one to find Driphdrash. “Half the square feet I’ve search have already by searched by someone else. I reckon the only place we haven’t looked is… right under Coldsore Hall!”
That thump you just heard was Lord Jeremy Coldsore’s jaw hitting the floor.
“Dear reader,” Ms. Crepuscular writes, “I have to conclude this chapter because, for the life of me, I can’t imagine what happens next. I think I’ll refresh my mind by watching that movie about the giant tarantula.”
We await further developments. I was going to say “breathlessly,” but that would be pushing it too far.