Dave Really Just Wants to be Normal

Dave was drinking in his favorite bar, idly considering starting a game of pool with some other regulars, when he noticed a hooded figure sitting in a dark, shadowy corner. ‘That’s odd,’ he thought, ‘this place has never had dark, shadowy corners before.’ He turned back to his drink and took a sip.

A few minutes later, he became aware that the hooded figure was watching him. Dave turned to glare at them and said, “that only works on people who want to get involved in whatever you’re offering. I don’t.”

“You are already involved, whether you know it or not,” intoned the shadowy figure in a voice that seemed equally likely to have come from a man, a woman, or a lizard.

“No, I don’t think I am,” Dave said. “Look at me, not being involved.” He turned back to his drink and downed it in a single long draft. He slammed it back on the table and saw, in the mirror behind the bar, that the hooded figure was now looming behind him. It seemed to have brought the shadows which had collected in the corner with it – the air around it was filled with a dark, swirling mist.

“You have no choice,” said the figure. “The Dark Lord is already-”

“I’m not sure you understand,” Dave said. “I’ve been involved with too many of these schticks. Defeated dark lords, rescued princesses, slain dragons, saved galaxies. I’m really quite over it. And if this Dark Lord of yours-”

“He is no Lord of mine-” protested the hooded figure.

Dave held up a finger. “I don’t care. I don’t care. If this Dark Lord wants to do whatever he’s doing, fine. I’m not involved. Find some naive kid to be your hero, that usually works.”

“The prophecy demands that it be you.”

“I seriously doubt it’s that stringent. Or even correct, prophecies are usually bunk. Just grab…” Dave glanced around the bar, looking for someone he didn’t like, “John over there. He’d love to rescue a princess.”

The hooded figure continued looming.

“John! Get over here, let me introduce you to hooded figure here.” While John approached, Dave slipped past the hooded figure and fled the bar. On his way back home, he dodged a group of even more ominous hooded figures, gave a pair of rather short young men directions to the bar, and hid from a mysterious old wizard in a trash dumpster.