Of Space Lions and Rescue Herbs


How does the fate of the planet depend on a space lion?

What happens when a spunky servant girl gets mixed up with renegades planning to lead a revolution? 

Gamerboy and Bookgirl can tell you.

This morning, I gave them the following creative writing assignment:

“You have created an imaginary country. Magic or not, you can decide. Answer these questions:

1. There is one valuable commodity that’s in highest demand. What is it and why is it important?

2. Your hero/heroine* gets involved in the dispute over your commodity and taken hostage by the other side. What is her/his involvement?”

I promised them that if they did a credible job, I’d post their work. That lure of fame was all they needed to inspire them.



The year 2084, on the planet Nemeus, the 2nd planet of the leo nebula, a crisis has risen. A new crystal has been discovered to create feelings of bravery in people, leading to a proverbial gold rush for them. A leodus, space lion, has been captured for a laboratory to create tracking equipment, as a leodus can find them like a metal detector. The leodus broke out and is attempting to prevent the humans from depleting the planet of the gems.



“Rescue herbs! Get ‘em here!”

“Fronsaf’s Greens! Only the best rescue herbs!”

“Rescue herbs! Good for sore throat, achy belly…”

I dodge among the crowds, ducking elbows and watching for feet. The “rescue herbs” everyone’s clamoring about are from a distant island. They cure everything, from triple pneumonia to the hiccups. I’ve tried them myself, but I passed out for a day. Not that anyone cared about a noble’s servant’s daughter. I haven’t eaten a rescue herb since.

Suddenly my spine tingles. I duck under a stall as a band of renegades strolls through the market. They stop at every stall selling rescue herbs, say something to the stallkeeper, and leave with all the herbs.

One stops at my stall. “Here, you. Give me all the rescue herbs you have.”

The stallkeeper says, “Or what?”

“We have the prince in our hands. If we don’t get the herbs, well… we may have to resort to other measures.” I can almost hear his cruel grin.

I have to do something. The prince is well known as the heir to the kingdom. I punch the renegade’s mailed boot.

He ducks his head under and grins. “Well, well, well. Looky who we have here.” He yanks me out by the neck of my dress and holds me up. “We have the princess! Give us the rescue herbs, or else!”

I gasp in shock. I’ve been mistaken for the Princess l’lenata at times, but never close up. Then I think about it. I could use this to my advantage. “Yes. I am the Princess I’lenata and I order you to let me go. Guards! Guards!”

The renegade whips out a sword and presses it to my throat. “Don’t.”

I cough. I think I’m allergic to tobacco. Ugh! Why do they all have to chew it? Sparks dance in front of my eyes. Then all goes dark.


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