Swamped Chapter 1 Page 1

Why did you come here?

You’ve survived a grueling four-day carriage ride to the edge of a filthy swamp, just to wait another three hours for a barge to take you to the marginally-less-filthy barracks that you’ll be living in for the next six months.

And it’s not as if you’ll really be able to rest in those barracks. Thankfully, as a new recruit, you won’t see combat duty unless there’s an emergency. But you’ll still be living in a warzone, and a warzone filled with ferocious swamp-beasts at that.

The smell alone gives you plenty of cause for regret. You thought all the stories were exaggerating the stench, but if anything, they were understating its potency.

You consider telling the carriage driver to take you back. Indeed, he looks like he’s expecting you to ask him at any minute. He’s made it quite clear that he doesn’t think you have what it takes to last here, and frankly, you have to admit he has a point.

But you also know that you can’t turn back. You came here for a reason, after all.

Why have you come to this swamp?

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you came to this swamp to accumulate enough swamp stench such that when you return home, you’ll be so permanently stinky that Arnold Meanmuck won’t bully you in the high school cafeteria anymore
nobody knows. war is hell
The last time anyone saw your father he was eloping with a brilliant emerald swamp beast.
You got drafted, duh.
to find a new pet rat named Jinger
You won something cool in a raffle and this is where they said to pick up your prize.
your perfume line was sanctioned by the government to manufacture toxins instead of perfume and this is where they sent you to gather samples.

> You were just really tired and overworked. So much so, one could say that you were…

Overloaded. With work. Uh… yeah.

Author’s Note:

This prompt was secretly a faction choice. Suggestions that involved a criminal background or running away from problems counted towards the main character being a Marshguard, while suggestions that were more towards the lawful side of things or that involved the government telling you to go counted towards the Bogknights.
Obviously, since nobody knew these were the conditions, there were several suggestions which weren’t clearly one or the other and I had to decide which one they were closer to.
I believe this is what I ended up deciding:
Arnold Meanmuck – Bogknight
war is hell – Marshguard
father eloped with a swamp beast – Bogknight
got drafted – Bogknight
pet rat – Bogknight
raffle prize – Bogknight
toxic perfume – Can’t remember now
Overworked – Marshguard
The toxic perfume suggestion involves being pressed into service by a government, but the reasons for it happening are extremely shady. I can’t remember which way I ended up going. However, the total was 5-2 without that one so it didn’t make a difference to the outcome either way.
From here on out, I won’t be listing all suggestions; only the ones that were relevant to the next update.