Thank you for your service to our nation. Warriors of clay, who have gone into battle against our enemies, we praise you for delivering woe to those who would do us harm. In our darkest hour, we asked our wizest wizardly men to craft your dour faces and hulking bodies and send you forth to exterminate those who would bring harm to our children. This you have done, and we thank you.
Many golems have fallen. Not the majority, thank goodness, because you are so good at grabbing our enemies by their legs and swinging them into walls until they are blood heaps. But a few golems have been killed. Maybe fifteen. Too many golems. We thank them for their sacrifice.
Please, golems, we have thanked you. Do not come home to our towers or villages. We do not need you to be around our parks. Golems, we really treasure your time as our instrument of arm tearing and head crushing, but now we are at peace. Allow our wizards to put the mark upon your head and make you sleep until you are needed again.
Golems, come on now, this is getting a little embarrassing. Your rampages were cute when they were across the world and directed at our enemies. Now that you have crushed our foes into a blood-paste and smashed through every wall and pillar, please stop. Wander the desert or sink yourself into an ocean.
You leave us no recourse. There is no other way. The golems only have one weakness: other golems. Men of clay, today you ruin our villages and stomp upon our children, but tomorrow you will face a new enemy. You will face the men of bronze.
Men of bronze, you have seen the men of clay to their defeat. The battlefield is scattered with broken clay villains. Your heroics will be legendary. You have defeated our clay enemies and saved our nation. We thank you.
Uh, bronze men, we need you to stand far away from our cities. Stand in the wilderness or in the ruins of previous cities that you or the clay men have destroyed. Are you familiar with the concept of patrol? Good.
Okay, golems, please. We see where you are coming from with the need to return to the land of your creation. Really, we do, but there just is not room for you. Those huge bronze bodies will buckle our roads and make a terrible noise as you clank around at night.
Why are you doing this? Is this about hubris, because, honestly, we do not think we are all that great. If we were so smart we would have come up with a way to defend against the clay golems without bringing in all you bronze golems.
This is your fault. It is your fault that we must do the only logical thing and turn one of our wizards into a giant. Using very powerful magic, he will dash you foolish bronze golems to pieces.
Hail, giant wizard. Thank you for your service to the nation. Since defeating the bronze golems we have built you several statues and thanked you profusely. Your giant wizard balls are visible from the ground, huge and gross, swinging in plain sight of our children. It is time for you to go far away and make a new life.
Where? We're leaving that up to you. Somewhere in international waters, preferably.
No...please, giant wizard...
You can read more from Zack Parsons in his debut novel, Liminal States.
TOTAL WRECK - crazy-eyed hound is covered in cobwebs, has a vespiary on back, graffiti on side and savage thirst for boat fuel. Frankly, I'm in over my head. He's in room 115 at Motel 6, yours free. 555-2851
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