Candy Lane Rogue
by Meredith Blaise '19
Candyland had become a realm of anarchy. War tore each holiday recipe into factions - the most prominent being the G clan and The MM's Men, fighting over property. The sky had become marred with the fumes of weaponry and industrialization, rendered blood red. The sunshine and rainbows, chocolate ponds and pink horizon with cotton candy clouds archetype had long since dissipated.
This story begins how all adventures begin.
The disgruntled protagonist running down a winding road into a tavern, desperate for answers.
He swung open the tavern door and sat promptly across from his liaison. The liaison took a swig of what smelled like dishwater and aged eggnog and placed a single sheet of paper on the table. The dissonance between the aroma of cinnamon and aggressively buff patrons was almost funny, if it hadn't been so familiar.
“Well?” The liaison, whose name was Gerald, asked in a grating tone. “I need to know.” He replied.
“Know what?” Gerald feigned perplexity.
“I need to know if you know -”
Gerald leaned in close.
“I need to know if you know the Muffin Man.” “The Muffin Man!” Gerald shrieked, aghast.
There was a lull of silence in the tavern — not a creature was stirring, save but a collective gasp and the unforgiving clattering of a tray on the ground.
“Yes. The Muffin Man.” Another sharp communal inhale sounded, followed by the slump of someone collapsing.
Gerald had composed himself, and flipped over the paper. The Wanted bill for the cookie that sat across from him was uncannily accurate - and offered a handsome sum.
“What's to say I shouldn't turn you in right now? I could use this money to expand on my business.”
“Your business of what? Making gumdrop buttons? Gerald we both know licorice zippers are going to run you out of business by the Eve— so just tell me. Does he still live on Drury Lane?”
Gerald swallowed. “He does. But you'll never catch him alive, he's too quick.”
“No.” Our chivalrous protagonist stepped onto the table from his chair and in one swift, fortuitous movement and held his finely crafted candy- cane sword to the sky. “No one is too quick, for Gingerbread Nick!”