Thursday, February 10, 2011



The Sultan’s Challenge


Al Bruno III

“Are you sure you have to be completely naked?” I asked.

Abner Deggent answered me with a distracted tone, “Of course.”

“Well if you say so...”

At the sound of a key turning in a lock, he looked up from admiring himself, “It’s time.”

“Already?” I felt my throat go dry. Our evening in captivity had passed so quickly.

The door to our cell swung open to reveal a pair of the Sultan’s personal guards. Personal guards! That was a joke. These men were mercenaries, lowly cutthroats with no sense of morality or dignity. The very dregs of humanity.

“Hey Ralph,” the taller one of the two said, “long time no see.”

“Er.. yes. Hello Francis,” I said, “...and Joe.”

The mercenaries led us at gunpoint through the twisting dungeon hallways.

Who am I you may ask? I am Ralph Brooks the official unpaid biographer of the legendary Abner Deggent, and this is the tale of the Sultan’s Challenge.

Of course you readers must speak the name of Abner Deggent with tones of hushed wonder but just in case you are exceptionally uninformed or stupid I will try to encapsulate the greatness of the man in a few sentences. Abner Deggent was the greatest adventurer of the post World War Two era. He was a righter of wrongs, a soldier of fortune and creator of a delicacy known in some corners of the world as ‘the Bloomin’ Onion’.

Our quest for the treasure of Priester John had brought us here to a tiny protectorate on the Horn of Africa. This land had recently fallen to the control of a Sultan who was as cruel as he was riddled with gout.

It had come to our attention that this Sultan had in his possession the legendary Map To The Diorama That Revealed The Location Of The Tomb Of Priester John. We presented ourselves to the Sultan and requested to see the map.

He refused and that left Abner Deggent with no choice but to steal it. I have learned that the call of adventure and the rule of law frequently find themselves at odds, this may be why many adventurers frequently find themselves having to call lawyers.

But I digress, let me turn our attention back to our fully justified attempted robbery.

Yes, attempted because dear reader, while Deggent’s fingers were legendary among the brothels of Singapore they utterly failed him when it came to the art of safecracking. We were captured and found ourselves brought before the Sultan.

To save us from the executioner’s block Deggent challenged the Sultan to a duel of honor but as gout had left the Sultan’s left foot swollen to the point where his toes looked like small yams he instead presented Deggent with a challenge as intriguing as it was deadly.

Deggent and I were marched up a flight of stairs and into a room decorated with the soft colors and lurid paintings. The air was thick with the odor of exotic perfumes. The Sultan was already there, he looked up from conferring with his seven beautiful wives. “Deggent!” he said, “I thought I told you that nudity was unnecessary.”

“Did you?” Deggent struck his manliest pose, his loins were at their most rampant, “I only hope that I don’t ruin your lovely wives for you.”

“What are you talking about?”

“The challenge of course.”

I cleared my throat, “Ah, Abner, the Sultan’s challenge is to resist the charms of his harem, not to charm them yourself.”

His expression tensed,“What?”

“Weren’t you paying attention?”

“Assume I wasn’t.”

“The women of the harem will entice you for an hour,” I explained, “and if you show any signs of... excitement the Sultan’s guard’s will castrate you with a blunt potato peeler.”

Abner Deggent nodded with understanding. I couldn’t help but notice that his hands had shifted to his suddenly decidedly unrampant groin. “Could we...” Deggent asked “...perhaps talk about this further?”

The mercenaries forced Abner Deggent into a soft chair; one stood on each side of him. Francis had his M-16 at the ready, Joe ran his thumb along the edge of the gold-plated potato peeler.

At 11 o’clock the Sultan placed a hot pink hourglass on a nearby table and his wives went to work.

And such work it was! First they danced, slowly undressing each other. Each discarded veil was allowed to drift across Deggent’s exposed skin. When the women were naked they began to oil each other’s bodies until they gleamed, not a single soft crevice went neglected. Occasionally lips brushed against flesh and they cooed with delight.

I tore my eyes away from the scene to see Deggent watching them, his eyes wide, expression grim but thankfully his manhood remained flaccid.

The room seemed to have become very warm and the scent that hung in the air might remind one of the odor of the locker room of the Rockford Peaches women’s baseball team circa 1945.

Not that I was ever caught spying there. That was a completely different Ralph Brooks.

The women of the harem surrounded the chair Abner Deggent was seated in, prostrating themselves and grinding against one another like a living carpet of sapphic desire. The mercenaries kept a close eye on Deggent, carefully watching for the first stirrings of arousal.

Which, as far as I’m concerned, spoke volumes about them.

After what seemed like an eternity the lasts grains began to run out of the hourglass. The Sultan whispered in amazement, “I don‘t believe it!”

Suddenly Abner Deggent screamed and rand from the room. I followed as quickly as I could but his speed was almost inhuman.

He locked himself back in our dungeon cell.

Did he make it? You might wonder but as I heard the frantic slapping noises and grunts of relief I knew that an hour had gone by and Abner Deggent had reached the stroke of midnight.


  1. I thought he might have been gay, but he must have incredible self control! I like the line about adventurers and lawbreaking...

  2. "Priester John" is a great name. And good luck to Abner...

  3. Very funny piece, Al. Kept me chuckling throughout. You have quite the imagination.