"You've Been Trolled" by NobodyAtAll

Warning: minor spoilers for the Resurrection of Dehak Saga.


BZZ-BZZ-BZZ

Kobul opens his eyes, ready to greet a new day.

He has a sturdy, king-size bed, with a frame made of adamantium.

Kobul needs it. He’s a troll. They’re on the big and heavy side.

In older times, trolls were nocturnal, and people believed that trolls turned to stone in sunlight.

It was actually because the sunlight overheated their silicon brains.

You have perhaps heard the phrase “room temperature IQ”?

In modern times, however, they’ve adapted to sunlight. Sure, on hot days a troll might need to duck into a shady corner to cool off, or don his thinking cap for a while.

It’s an actual piece of headgear, with built-in fans to cool the brain.

But they can manage.


In his bathroom, Kobul grooms himself.

Like many trolls, he cultivates lichen on his head, as a substitute for the hair that many carbon-based lifeforms have.

So for trolls and Sllicoids, baldness really is a choice, and the Silicoid supremacist group known as the Stoneheads owes their moniker to their intentional lack of lichen.

He’s going with a fresh, modern style, and has started cultivating a beard.

On his phone, which is so big it looks more like a tablet computer, his favorite ggroohauga song is playing.

:musical_note: THUMP THUMP THUMP :musical_note:

Ggroohauga means “music made from rocks”. It involves hitting rocks of different sizes and mineral compositions with hammers.

Surprisingly, there’s a lot of humans who like it.

FauCorp was quick to start selling smartphones for trolls, the touchscreens redesigned so fingers made of metamorphorical rock can operate them.

They want to cater to as diverse a customer base as possible.


When his morning grooming is done, Kobul gets dressed.

For many trolls, getting dressed doesn’t take very long, as they don’t have a lot that needs to be covered up, so traditionally, trolls usually wore nothing but loincloths.

But Kobul is not a traditional troll. He strives to rise above the stereotypes, and to set a good example.

He’s not the only troll to adopt Earth fashion, but he was one of the first.

After donning his gigantic leather jacket that probably doomed an entire herd of cows, equally large jeans, and sneakers big enough for fluffies to nap inside them, Kobul heads down into the kitchen.

This house has wide doorways, wide stairs, and sturdy floors.

As he enters the kitchen, he sees his housemates and their fluffies.

Reiner Swan, wizzard, cooking up bacon and wearing a tattered Beatles T-shirt, equally tattered sweatpants, and bunny slippers that have seen better days.

The bunnies look like they’re going bald.

“Mornin’, Kob.”

Reiner’s Luggage is watching its master cook, its wooden tongue hanging out, and it’s obvious that the Luggage would be salivating if it could.

Gilius Bli’kzim-ku’up, dwarf, is already fully dressed. So he’s clad in chain mail. He’s sitting at the dining table, sipping coffee and eating a slice of dwarf toast. Dwarf bread is forged, not baked, and it never goes stale, because it was stale to begin with. That slice of toast would make a formidable weapon if thrown.

“I saved you a few slices.”

His chair was designed by Dr. Valerie Valentine, and its height can be adjusted on command.

Chairs like that are common these days, because dwarves find being lifted up to a chair to be very humiliating.

Only Gilius’ housemates and family know whether or not he is actually male, and they’re not telling.

His room is down in the basement. That’s what dwarves prefer. Dwarves are right at home underground.

And Skull-Crackin’ Angus, pictsie, is sitting on the table too, next to Daft Mungo, a member of his clan who needs to be monitored at all times, because he’s dumb even by pictsie standards and can’t be trusted not to do something stupid.

He’s very eager, though.

“Crivens! I’ll wait for yon bacon, ye ken. I dinnae want ta chip a tooth.”

“Och, dwarf bread cannae be tha’ bad!”

And their fluffies. Gold and Glitter, Gilius’ million dollar couple, Horace, Reiner’s cheeky little monkey of a stallion, and Slate, Kobul’s stone fluffy, all happily numming kibble. The rest of Angus’ clan are feeding their micro fluffies, in their mound in the back garden.

Gold, Glitter and Horace have learned not to help themselves to Slate’s bowl, because his kibble is gravel.

Very nutritious gravel, mind you. Stone fluffies, like the trolls whose extraterrestrial DNA is part of their genome, eat rocks. They can’t even digest carbon-based life.

Trolls are also known as Silicoids, if you’ve forgotten, or if you’re new. While these hulking silicon-based beings originate from the distant planet of Silics, those who settled on Earth centuries ago came to be known as trolls by the locals, and adopted that name.

And Kobul, who was born on Earth, identifies as a troll. It’s a cultural thing.

He won’t rip your head off if you call him a Silicoid, though.

But calling them rocks is never a good idea.

Reiner heaps bacon onto three plates. One for him, one for Angus’ clan, and a third smaller plate for Gilius.

As the pictsies outside smell the bacon, they come flooding in through the open door, climbing up the table legs, helping themselves from the plate.

“Crivens! Tha’ smells great!”

“I could murrrder some bacon!”

“Dinnae hog it, Nae-As-Wee-As-Wee-Willie Willie, or I’ll skelp ye guid!”

“Haw! Hog it! Verra funny!”

Reiner leaves a little bit in the pan, and as the Luggage’s lid flips up, he dumps what’s left into the Luggage’s waiting mouth, burnt crunchy bits and all.

The lid swings shut, the Luggage happily chewing with big, sharp wooden teeth.

mnam mnam mnam

And Gilius, after dumping a generous dollop of ketchup on his plate, starts eating his bacon, a bit hesitant, but once he’s had his first mouthful, he speeds up.

Usually, dwarves eat rats, and shy away from the meats that humans consider edible.

But Gilius has bravely been experimenting with meat that didn’t come from something that squeaks, and his friends in the Warriors Four have been supporting him, every step of the way.

Reiner, Kobul and Gilius were all born in this city. Or at least, Reiner is pretty sure he was born here. His memories of his early childhood are hazy, and all he really knows is that his parents probably emigrated here from England.

So they were already best friends by the time they befriended Angus. They were already friends with Mr. Futaba, who gifted Reiner with the Luggage.

And they spent years touring America and beyond in Reiner’s old car, helping people in need, saving feral fluffies.

Mr. Futaba, who is happily married with adult daughters, used to tour with them. It used to be the Warriors Five.

He’s the one who left before they became famous.

But they’re still close friends with him.

These days, however, the Warriors Four are ChaotiX members, and they have blippers.

So they can do what they do without having to drive everywhere, and they got a place in the city.

Since the Alien Invasion, renovating houses to make them troll-friendly has become a booming industry.

Gilius finishes his slice of toast.

“So what’s the plan for today, boys?”

Kobul, sitting on a large, very sturdy chair, grabs a slice of his own.

There’s a lot of overlap between dwarf cuisine and troll cuisine, which is one thing that eased tensions between the two races.

“Me an’ Slate got a few things ter do dis mornin’. An’ der usual appointment. Yer know 'ow dey get if I don’t drop in at least once a week.”

Reiner nods, already having finished his first mouthful of bacon.

“And I’ve gotta go to the Sanctum. Des is calling another meeting, about Fred and Varney.”

Angus grins, a piece of bacon in his hands.

“An I’ve gotta go talk ta Mel. Aboot oor new swords, ye ken.”

This is one of the advantages of being six inches tall: what would be morsels to someone bigger is instead a sizable meal.

Even on minimum wage, a pictsie can live like a king.

Of course, Angus’ clan has a lot of treasure in their mound, and an actual king, a dead one, of a long-forgotten kingdom.

Yes, mound as in burial mound. Pictsies have a high tolerance for morbid.

So they don’t mind their roommate. He doesn’t make much of a fuss.

Reiner grins.

“Bet Mel needed a really small anvil for that job.”

The wizzard has never been one to use weapons. In his opinion, they tend to unnecessarily escalate a situation.

So he learned karate instead. He’s a black belt. Now, his body is a weapon.

And if he finds himself outmatched, he’s also a very fast runner.

The other Warriors know when Reiner’s in trouble if they hear him screaming “oh shit, oh shit, oh shit, I’m gonna die!”

He’s something of an omniglot too. He’s had to learn how to scream for mercy in at least nineteen languages.

Surprisingly, unlike a certain counterpart of his, Reiner has never lost his optimism.

Angus chortles, spraying bits of bacon.

“Tha’s tha funny thing, Reiny! The bloke already had one! Some scunner dared 'im ta shoe an ant once, ye ken.”

And if you listen closely in Mel’s smithy, you’ll hear that ant clattering around.

Horace, having finished his kibble, waddles over to the table.

“Su wut am da nyu sowds wike?”

“They’s made o’ chivalrium! I gotta be honest, I didnae think us pictsies could use it. We’re a wee bittie rough aroond tha edges.”

Angus jerks a thumb at the pictsie-sized sword currently strapped to his back.

“Thissun glows in tha presence o’ lawyers, ye ken. There’s verra few things tha’ scare a pictsie, an’ lawyers be one o’ them, ye k–”

crack

Angus turns, seeing Daft Mungo holding a slice of dwarf toast, which he apparently chipped a tooth on when he tried to bite it, the rest of the clan laughing at him.

And the Big Man sighs.

“Crivens! I take me een offa 'im for pip seconds…”

“Oh, waily waily waily!”


Around noon, Kobul takes Slate on a walk.

As they pass a McDonald’s, they decide to stop in for lunch.

McDonald’s now caters to trolls too, with rock burgers, rock fries and rock nuggets.

It was briefly called the McRock menu, before the troll community complained.

As they walk up to the self-service kiosks, they see Victor standing at the next one with Scarface.

“Did you hear the news?”

“Da Mak-Wib am back.”

Kobul grins.

“Dey ain’t got McRibs fer trolls yet. Dey would probably be made o’ quartz. Clogs der arteries, quartz.”

“Duw wock nuggies am gud, foh.”

Scarface grins.

“Scawface am jus gunna twust Swate awn dat wun.”

Victor laughs, as he orders several McRibs for him and Scarface.

“Yeah, I ate… part of a Silics stonebeast one time. I had to give up after the first mouthful, otherwise I was gonna literally shit bricks.

“Gwoss, Souw Bwuddah. Pee-puw am nummin hewe.”

“Sorry, Soul Brother. Kob, we’re gonna do a walking lunch, you wanna tag along?”

Kobul nods.

“Sure. We wuz gunna do der same fing.”


After getting their food, the quartet moves on, happily chatting and eating.

As they pass a clothes store, they see the man known by the locals as the Dancer. A young man with an emo haircut and black clothes, doing the cocky dance he owes his nickname to.

He’s here every day, dancing outside the store, but he’s learned to take breaks so he doesn’t throw his back out again.

When they pass him, the Dancer freezes mid-dance, sniffing the air.

“Are those McRibs?”

Victor nods.

“You wanna bite?”

“Crap! Crap crap crap!”

The Dancer takes his phone out, making a call.

“Yeah, it’s me! The McRib is back! I repeat, the McRib is back! Don’t let you-know-who find out!”

He hangs up, seeing the others look at him.

“Yu wanna teww Scawface wut da fuk dat wuz abowt?”

The Dancer blushes.

“I’ve got a friend whose dad is obsessed with McRibs. He gets a bit… crazy whenever they’re brought back…”

“He nu can stawp gobb-win dem, huh?”

“You have no idea, Scarface. He saw my friend eating Burger King one time, and lost his shit.

Kobul laughs, sounding like a miniature landslide.

“Some groophar people. Good luck, hope yer can keep him in der–”

“MCRIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIB!!!”

An middle-aged man in a green and purple business suit runs down the other side of the street, with another man, about the Dancer’s age, chasing after him.

“Dad, come on! Last time this happened, I didn’t shit right for a week!”

“They only make McRibs two, three times a year tops! We are obliged to eat as many as possible!”

The Dancer sighs.

“Too late.”


The quartet moves on, parting ways when their walking lunch is finished.

Victor and Scarface are heading to Dr. Pierre Faucheuse’s School for Gifted Individuals, for another round of interrogating three of the ne’er-do-wells currently in the ChaotiX’s custody.

As for Kobul and Slate, they’re headed to the Magical Quarter, the city’s magical district.

When the normos thought they were all alone, and the magical districts were hidden, those districts served as a safe refuge for dwarves and trolls alike, having their own Little Nidavellirs and Little Silicses.

Not every dwarf wants to live under a mountain, and not every troll wants to live on a mountain.

Even if that mountain happens to be one of said troll’s ancestors.

You’d be surprised to learn just how many mountains on Earth are actually ancient troll corpses.

They can get kinda big.

And even though the normos now know that they were never alone, even though there’s no need to hide one’s true nature anymore, many dwarves and trolls still live in those neighborhoods.

They don’t have to move.


WHAM WHAM WHAM

In Little Silics, the city’s troll neighborhood, Kobul bangs his fist on the door of one house.

That’s just how trolls knock. The door is big, and sturdy, the house built from the ground up for trolls. Not much of a garden, though. Most trolls don’t really pay plants a lot of attention, and Trollish only has one word for plants, “oograh”.

The door opens, revealing an older troll couple. Female trolls tend to have a build not unlike that of a fertility statue.

The male troll strongly resembles Kobul, has a lichen mustache, the lichen on his head has apparently been deliberately styled to look like he’s going bald, and his stony face bears a gruff expression.

“Kobul. Thought yer wuz gonna be late.”

And he’s wearing a loincloth, like many trolls and Silicoids still do. It’s made of Silics stonecloth.

Silics stonebeasts aren’t just hunted for food. They’re covered in fur that is, bizarrely enough, comprised of silicon fiber, and can be turned into stonecloth, a highly versatile stone-based fabric.

The female troll, however, is wearing a dress, her rocky body a bluish hue, and she seems happy to see Kobul.

“Good ter see yer again, me lil’ pebble.”

Kobul hugs his mother.

“Hiya, Mum. Iz Kaunkrit 'ere yet?”

His father nods.

“'E got 'ere an hour before yer. So, still got yer coprorat, do yer?”

Kobul scowls as he and Slate walk inside.

“I still got me fluffy, yeah.”

Kobul’s father throws up his arms, stomping off to the den, muttering to himself.

Groophar coprorats all over der neighborhood, I thought Little Silics was safe, dere ain’t nuffin a coprorat can eat 'ere, but nooooooo, dey 'ad to go make dem stone coprorats…”

Kobul has not yet told his father that the troll DNA used to create stone fluffies was donated by Kobul himself.

His mother knows, and has conspired to keep her husband from finding out.

“Don’t mind yer dad, Kobie. Azfolt next door got a stone fluffy last week, an’ Kulay keeps steppin’ in copro.”

Kulay shouts from the den.

“Damn Azfolt gotta put a leash on dat fing, Saffyre!”

Slate sighs, obviously hurt by Kulay’s remarks.

“Fwuffies nu am fings.

Saffyre gives Slate a sympathetic look as they walk into the living room, seeing Sergeant Kaunkrit, Kobul’s brother and an officer of the law, sitting on a large couch carved from stone.

“Don’t let Kulay get ter yer, Slate. I got dem rock cookies yer like fer yer.”

As Saffyre heads into the kitchen, Kaunkrit grins at Slate.

“Wotcher. Don’t worry, Dad might not like fluffies dat much, but 'e knows 'e can’t get away wif 'urtin dem. Not wif a son on der force. I don’t wanna arrest me own dad, but der law is der law.”

Slate happily waddles over to let Kaunkrit pet him, and the troll policeman’s eyes linger on his brother.

“So how are yer doin’, Kob? I ‘eard from der Commissioner dat Drakonia’s open again. Yer bin doin’ a lotta adventurin’?”

Kobul nods, pointing at a badge on his jacket, next to his ChaotiX patch.

The badge has Kobul’s name and the number 8 on it in Drakonian script, the letters glowing.

“Us Warriors Four got our own party. Lemme tell yer, Kaun, nobody on der other side know how ter deal wif a troll. Trolls ain’t really a fing dere.”

“Dey gut owks, foh.”

Saffyre walks in, bearing a large tray of freshly-baked rock cookies.

They have very little in common with the rock cakes you may be thinking of.

If you think those are hard…

After she places the tray on a stone coffee table, Kobul and Kaunkrit both take a cookie, and Saffyre offers one to Slate too.

“Fank yuw, gwamma. Um num num…

Saffyre beams, petting Slate.

“Yer welcome. So, Kobul, wot’s dis I bin ‘earin’ about yer an’ a young lady from Silics by der name o’ Rhoobee? Is we gonna ‘ear der clitter-clatter o’ lil’ feet soon?”

Kobul suddenly chokes on his cookie, Kaunkrit slapping him on the back.

“We gone out once or twice, Mum. Nuffin serious yet. Who told yer?”

Kaunkrit grins again, holding up a hand.

“Guilty as charged.”

Kulay walks in, having overheard the conversation from the den.

“Yer datin’ a girl from Silics, Kobul?”

“Wot, yer got a problem wif dat, Dad?”

“Nah, nah! Dey still do fings propperly on Silics. Yer 'old on ter dat one, Kobul! Yer asked her dad if yer can 'it er on der head wif a nice rock yet?”

That’s a traditional part of courtship for both trolls and Silicoids.

Kobul shakes his head.

“Dat’s not how dey do it on Earth no more, Dad, and yer know dat. Deez days, a lady troll can do der ‘ittin’ herself, an’ she can choose whose head she 'its.”

Kulay scoffs, sitting down in his favorite stone armchair to grab a cookie. One thing he’s always happy to leave the den for is his wife’s cookies.

“Dat’s one of dem goohuloog humie ideas, ain’t it? Dat femmy-nism? Boys, when I wuz yer age, I walloped yer mum o’er der ‘ead wif a good solid piece o’ jade, an’ we bin 'appy e’er since.”

Slate giggles.

“Fwuffies hab it a wot ee-zee-uw. Wen a fwuffy wan anudda fwuffy tuw be dey speciaw fwend, dey nu gutta hit eech udda wif wockies.”

Kulay laughs.

“An’ dat’s why dere’s so many of yer. Sorry about bein’ so harsh wif yer, Slate. Dat’s jus’ 'ow trolls are.”

“Dey nu haf tuw be dat way.”

Kobul nods, reaching for another cookie.

“Dat’s right, Slate. We ain’t gotta live under bridges, we ain’t gotta hate dwarves, and we ain’t gotta be afraid o’ no goats–”

Kulay freezes up, suddenly sounding very meek.

“Please don’t say der G-word. Yer know 'ow I feel about G-words.”

Kobul sighs in frustration.

“Dad, dey is just sheep wif an attitude an’ wifout der thick coats. We bin over dis.”

“But trolls an’ G-words, Kobul…”

Kulay shudders.

“Dat’s a 'ole fing.


Later, after a pleasant afternoon with the family, Kobul and Slate walk home, Kobul carrying a large basket of leftover cookies.

He’s going to share them with Gilius. While Kulay begrudgingly tolerates Kobul’s friendship with a dwarf, Saffyre is happy that her son’s friends are so diverse.

“I rekkon Dad is warmin’ up ter yer.”

“Yuw fink su, daddeh?”

“He stopped callin’ yer a coprorat, I call dat progress.

“Wai du yu daddeh nu wike fwuffies?”

“It’s not fluffies he don’t like, Slate. It is change. Very set in 'is ways, me dad is. But 'e’ll come around. Mum will bash some sense inter 'im if he don’t. He ain’t so bad once yer get ter know ‘im. Even 'e don’t like der Stoneheads. An’ 'e knows dat Earth is a lot better den Silics. But 'e just don’t wanna admit it.”

They pass the McDonald’s, seeing the gentleman in green and purple at one table, happily devouring a large pile of McRibs, his son sitting across from him with his head in his hands.

The older man keeps trying to persuade his son to have a McRib, to no avail.

“Dey ain’t got no Maccy’s on Silics, fer starters. It’s der one place yer can get ter before Maccy’s gets dere.”

“Dat am pwob-ab-wee gunna change soon, foh.”

Kobul whistles, sounding like the wind howling through the nooks and crannies of a mountain.

“Oh yeah. Dad ain’t gonna be happy about dat.

3 Likes

“Music made from rocks”, eh? I think Dr. Howard Bannister would like a word with you.

1 Like

That’s another Discworld reference.

Read Soul Music. Or watch the animated adaptation, it’s got good songs and Christopher Lee as Death.

Fair enough, I’m just a huge fan of the movie “What’s Up, Doc?” (which has nothing to do with Looney Tunes, btw).

1 Like

That’s not what Wikipedia says.

It was intended to pay homage to comedy films of the 1930s and 1940s, especially Bringing Up Baby, and Warner Bros. Bugs Bunny cartoons.

Well, I’ve never checked the Wikipedia page, so I didn’t know that. All I know is that Looney Tunes only appears once, in the last five seconds, as the second “title drop”, the first being toward the beginning when a character mimics Bugs’ carrot chomp and says it. Actually, I guess that’s a lot more of an homage than I thought. Anyway, the point I’m trying to make is that while it certainly has Looney Tunes-esque zaniness through the whole story, it’s fully live-action and has its own plot. See it for yourself and tell me what you think. :grin:

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Sorry if this is double-posting, but it’s been at least a month, so, I’ll risk it. Just wanted to say that after rereading this piece from start to finish, I absolutely love it! So many fascinating and hilarious little details, all woven together to make a really enthralling read! I’ve probably said this already, but I’ll say it again anyway: NobodyAtAll, you really know how to worldbuild! :grin:

1 Like

Thank you, thank you. I have fun with the worldbuilding, showing how all the different elements of the NLU intersect, how the mundane coexists with the fantastic. And of course, a world with so many fantastic elements has plenty of influence on fluffykind.

Worlds colliding is a major recurring theme in my headcanon. And another theme that is many of the fantastic beings in my headcanon are just people, when you get right down to it. They might be made of stone, or sleep in baths, or be blue and six inches tall, or have an insatiable craving for spaghetti, but they’re still people.

Look at how many different kinds of beings there are in the ChaotiX. X-Positives, vampires, wizards, aliens, robots, cavemen, the list goes on. But they’re all still united by common goals.

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