By: the AMCW writers
The Watchers... Watching.
Lord77 walks in, dressed in a Shakespearean style outfit, trying hard to avoid the chafing caused by the ridiculous purple tights he’s sporting. Clearing his voice, blowing on the feather in his cap to keep it off of his face and then half-choking on it, he prepares to recite.
“...In the beginning, there was Samuel Vimes . And, Samuel Vimes said, let there be the Ankh-Morpork City Watch, and it was good. And, Samuel Vimes imparted wisdom, knowledge, aided those that were confused, in need, and the guild was peaceful.
Then, Samuel Vimes was pulled away from our guild, and things got...well, strange...”
The image of Lord77 pulls away, unfocusing for a moment and then becoming clear again. Susan Sto Helit and Azzageddi sit at the Watch House’s Historical Archives (mostly known as “The place where we throw everything we don’t need, want or eat, please beware of the llamas” these days), surrounded by ancient manuscripts, dusty books and the occasional llama.
Susan Sto Helit closes the tome she’s been consulting, killing a small mouse in the process, and says, The AMCW goes back several millennia, having been created in the year of the cross-eyed cow, some months ago. Our honorable founders, who are no longer around much, established it so that Godville could have some sort of order."
Azzageddi : “Even if we are using a rather forgiving concept of order here...”
Susan Sto Helit : “Indeed. After all with such a vast and diverse body of competent, zealous, -law-abiding- law-enforcing... hmm, competent officers, it is easy to sometimes step on someone’s toes (number of toes may vary, mainly because of Mith Igorina’s fine work).”
Azzageddi : “I still have a few extras. They’re quite useful. They make fine chopstick holders.”
Susan Sto Helit : “Right... too much information there... Anyway, we are not, by far, the oldest officers in the Watch but I guess we have seen the Guild through some rough times.”
Azzageddi : “The crickets... oh, the crickets” (shudders)
Susan Sto Helit : (smiles nostalgically) “The crickets... And the fire-breathing vampire bats. They took a liking to you.”
Azzageddi : "They liked me WAY too much!"
Susan Sto Helit : "Well, they were nothing compared to the chocolate hippos...”
Azzageddi : “Was that really chocolate in the pool? Because I certainly never tasted any of it.”
Susan Sto Helit : “And just how curious are you?”
Azzageddi : (silence, crickets sing in the background) "...I withdraw the question."
Susan Sto Helit : "Well, fortunately, Leonard took care of them. Well, sort of... But there was one infestation that turned out rather well."
Azzageddi : “Ah, yes! The Sex-crazed Llamas!”
Susan Sto Helit : (facepalms) “No! I mean the baby-oh-baby buga-buga bunnies.”
Azzageddi : “Oh, that infestation!”
Susan Sto Helit : (sighs) "Well, the baby-oh-baby buga-buga bunnies did start off as one of the main ingredients in the creation of the sex-crazed llamas.”
Azzageddi : "That... explains a few things...”
Susan Sto Helit : “I guess it does. But, of course, the bunnies were not always the omnipresent, self-confident beings most people know them to be... Take Mitzi, for instance...”
Azzageddi : "Yes (dreamily). Well, true, she didn’t use to speak much. In fact, she used to hit me a lot... and rather hard, too.”
Susan Sto Helit : "Remember when she broke Lordy’s nose? Twice?”
Azzageddi : “Well, I was splintering into thousands of copies of myself all over the land at the time, so I didn’t catch it personally.”
Susan Sto Helit : “Yeah, I guess you just had to be there...”
Azzageddi : “Oh, I was there, all right... and there... and there... and (tossing a thumb over his shoulder) over there too!”
Susan Sto Helit : "And, of course, there’s always Sasha and Pasha.”
Azzageddi : "Didn’t they sell Lordy to some gnomes once?"
Susan Sto Helit : “You mean Gnome-a-geddon? The great gnome invasions? Our one and only dungeon crawl?”
Azzageddi : “Oh yeah! That’s how Sasha and Pasha got enough money to start their bar, actually.”
Susan Sto Helit : “You mean the bar we’re not supposed to have because we’re the Watch?”
Azzageddi : "Um, call it a neighborhood-watch meeting room...that just happens to sell hard liquor and have a piano and a chocolate fountain. And a karaoke machine that never plays what you want it to play.”
Susan Sto Helit : “It always seems to please our guests at parties. And we’ve had some good ones.”
Azzageddi : “I guess the luau was our first big one, wasn’t it?”
Susan Sto Helit : “Pretty much. The ones before that could just be classified as ‘spontaneous attempts to get everyone pissed drunk’.”
Azzageddi : “Worked for me.”
Susan Sto Helit : “Well, they were fun... Drinking has been one of our most effective ways of recruiting new officers into the guild...”
Azzageddi : “Like Godofbeer ! Yes, he joined us right around the time of the luau.”
Godofbeer peeks in at the sound of his name associated with parties. “Did anyone mention booze?”
Susan Sto Helit : “Upstairs, Corporal. Upstairs.”
Godofbeer: “Oh, right.. Thanks!” (Leaves)
Susan Sto Helit : “O-kay... Moving on...”
Azzageddi : “Hey, wasn’t the luau held right after Lord77 joined us?”
Susan Sto Helit : “No, that you’re thinking of the Hogswatch party. But, yes, that luau changed a lot of things for the guild.”
Azzageddi : “Yes... Lord77 , then Godofbeer , then Ravenvalykre ...”
Susan Sto Helit : “The unfortunate loss of Lordy’s drinking buddy...”
Azzageddi : “That was around the time I straightened up. Waking up from a blackout to discover I had somehow been put in charge of things while the Commander was away, pretty much did the trick.”
Susan Sto Helit : “Well, technically... The Almighty Anne should be in charge. You were just too drunk to figure that one out.”
Azzageddi : “Wait, what?? (checks the Guild lists) YOU’RE RIGHT! She’s senior to me! Does this mean I can stop being in charge?”
Susan Sto Helit : “I have no idea and I really don’t care. But I’d say yes, you’re off the hook.”
(The Almighty Anne materializes in the room, hands on her hips, tapping her foot) “Nuh-uh! No way is he off the hook! This watch is a meritocracy- it doesn’t matter how long I’ve been here! Besides, Sergeant Colon was in the watch longer than Mister Vimes, but you don’t see Colon in charge do you? See? I’m like Co... I’m not even going to finish that! You get the point. And anyway (sidling up to the spluttering Azzageddi ), it’s so nice seeing a nice, strong, manly demon in charge... (flutters eyelashes), the watch just wouldn’t work with little ol’ me running the show." (sighs deeply causing a disconcerting amount of movement under the bodice of her dress).
Thank you to our good friends at Ankh-Morpork City Watch for sharing their guild’s history with us! We look forward to Part 2 of “Behind the Guild: AMCW” soon. As part of our quest to
conquer get to know our neighbors, we hope to look at many more guilds in upcoming issues. If you’d like to share a bit of your guild’s history, contact one of the Weekly Harvest staff.