Me, the Barbarian

I love good pulp adventures like Robert E. Howard’s Conan stories. I love that the hero is a beast, able to accomplish superhuman feats, get the girl and beat the bad (usually) guys to death.

I love that a hero like Conan doesn’t worry about moral qualms like: “Should I really be robbing this temple?” or “Shouldn’t I let the woman choose if she wants to be with me or not?”

Sometimes I like to imagine that I’m a barbarian like Conan. A wild and crazy barbarian biding his time with a domesticated job, wife, apartment and adulthood responsibilities.

But just like Conan, I could be driven by fate to join the crew of a deadly pirate ship, adventure through mysterious ruins and slay giant serpent-wizards. If the right situation arose anyways.

I see it now: A snow-covered town becomes a ghost-village, inhabitants hiding from the weather in their homes. Not Stevan The Barbarian.

Trudging through knee-high mounds of white powder, the masculine form can be distinguished toting his two-handed weapon down the narrow streets. Townsfolk peer warily through their blinds uncertain what this powerful creature intends to do.

Suddenly the barbarian unsheathes his mighty blade. Beset on all sides by wind and flurries, Stevan attacks the snow with his raw physical strength and the power of his snow shovel. Tirelessly he piles the powder in a wall all around him and the local bank.

“What could that barbarian be doing?” the townspeople wonder.

Suddenly a great roar fills the streets. Stevan’s spine stiffens instantly as he recognizes the call of a great monster. The noise grows more deafening as it approaches the high wall of snow, Stevan trapped in the prison of his own making.

An explosion of frosty debris blasts toward the barbarian as a massive metal plow bursts through the wall. Stevan does not hesitate for fear or contemplation, instead hurling his manly figure towards the machine. Within an instant he has scaled the monstrosity to discover a mere mortal operating as the mind of the beast.

“Immortal machines are a hassle,” quoth Stevan. “But a mere man I can slay with ease.”

The cold white dust covering his shovel turns red as the blade scoops up the driver’s head.

“Hooray!” shout the townspeople, rushing out of their homes. “That snow plow driver has been terrorizing us for ages!”

But Stevan does not waste time with his well-earned gratitude. Rushing through the glass doors of the encapsulated bank he takes his reward in money and as mysteriously as he arrived, the barbarian leaves the small town to its own devices.

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