A FEW NOTES ON TROLLS
(found in a garbage can)
Do you believe in trolls? I do. Through the ages, Dark and otherwise,
people have whispered tales of horror late at night, with fires burning
low and children wide-eyed in dumbstruck terror. Trolls are not the
stuff of fairy-tales, though. They really do exist, as they have since
the first human being tread this earth. They are easily spotted, if you
know what to look for, but general society tend to be ignorant of their
presence and cynical to suggestions of their existence.
Where do they come from? The only reasonable explanation could be that
they are some brute offspring from Early Man, an abhorrent strain of
symbiotic humanity created when there still was confusion in nature's
gene pool and fantastic creatures lived and perished in an unforgiving,
I am, at present, under dire threat from such a troll and have at length
decided to expose their foul association with our kin. My thoughts are
disturbed on this matter as it could result in my untimely and (some
would say) tragic demise. I am writing this as the perishable memories
seethe in my mind, so hopefully you would bear with me as I lay down
this manuscript from hell.
The last few months were the most appalling I have suffered at the hands
of the most abominable of foes; but more of that later. Trolls do not
stick to their kind, which is probably why they are not recognised as a
definite group, or classified as a distinct species. I am certain that
this contributed to their continued survival, for how simple it would be
to eradicate them - being a conspicuous, offensive and malignant brood.
They do not dwell under bridges, as legend would have it, nor are they
gnome-like in appearance. Trolls tend to be big and unabashedly
intimidating. They have adapted well to our society, and although I
cannot pretend to have reliable figures at hand, I know that they
are multiplying and flourishing.
The first thing you will notice is the odour: a dank, pungent smell of
decay clinging to their bodies and their clothing. When in close contact
with a troll you will detect the odour as an disagreeable whiff as it
brushes past you, or a sour, lingering scent where it has been seated a
only a short while before. Trolls enjoy flatulence, and being very
territorial by nature, would mark their area in such a manner. Sometimes
when perceiving a threat, they would defend themselves by directing a
blast of rancid air from their bowels towards the offending party.
Another peculiarity about trolls is the prodigious secretion of their
bodily fluids. Their hands would be damp with perspiration, even on cold
days. When you are about to shake the hand of a troll, you will notice a
hurried wipe of the hand on its garments, as it tries to conceal this
characteristic. There are many other physical traits that are prevalent
in the troll gene. Their eyes tend to be small and pig-like, their noses
sizeable. They have large feet and always suffer from some kind of
fungal growth over there. (This is almost certainly as a result of their
aversion to water and washing.)
Trolls are not intelligent, but are gifted with a cunning streak that
would confound most. They have a curious nature and relish the
opportunity to investigate hidden corners, to explore behind closed
doors. If you are unfortunate to have a troll in your house and you are
so indiscreet as to leave it on its own, you might return to find it
wandering from private domains, or happily rummaging through your
cupboards or your refrigerator.
If there is nothing of interest in their surrounds, they revert to
exploring and probing into the nooks and crannies of their own bodies...
Observe this habit: If a troll in your presence starts to scratch its
nether regions, you know that it finds you boring.
Generally trolls enjoy each others company, but as I have stated
previously, these liaisons are by nature brief and are quite volatile.
Once a troll has recognised a cousin, composure would slip and any
genteel gathering would be fragmented by their raucous, drunken orgy.
I made my first fateful acquaintance with a troll on a glorious summer
day in 1994. I had a small, moderately successful business which I was
administering from home and I had a desire to expand. I placed an
unassuming little advertisement in the local newspaper, requesting
people with marketing skills to contact me. The most promising
respondent was a hefty man of about thirty. He went by the name of Geoff
Although obviously overweight, he had a tensile strength about him. His
gregarious attitude and the underlying hunger for success attracted me.
Those were the ideal qualities needed, I told myself. I still shudder
when I think of how ignorant, how blind and vulnerable I was at that
He duly started in my employ, and the results were almost immediate.
Soon I had a dozen new clients, and I began to see my ship on the
horizon. Then the problems started. Geoff insisted that he be given an
equal partnership in the business. The idea galled me, for I had built
up the business through years of my own blood and sweat. I had become my
business. How could I share myself with this relative stranger?
We had an argument, violent and acerbic. He threatened my person and my
property, and railed about the clientele he had brought the business.
There he had a point. With clients come commitments, and I realised that
those commitments were inextricably intertwined with his association
with the business. If I fired him, my livelihood would be wrecked and I
would be a fugitive from an army of creditors. He had effectively
hijacked my bread and butter while I was blissfully beholding the rosy
future. My anger, as I stared into his surly face, changed to
despondency, and I capitulated.
The result? I toiled every day and every night in a last-ditch attempt
to salvage the business. But there was a subtle change in our
relationship: it was as if he secretly enjoyed my misery and actively
seeked to intensify it. He struck up a friendship with some fellow
drunkards, and entertained them on my meagre budget.
If you would bear with me, I have decided to portray the following
important events chronologically.
May 25 - It was at this stage that I became certain of the
existence of trolls. I observed some of his friends and noticed their
disgusting, familiar traits. The sweaty palms, bad odours, all the
characteristics I have come to know so well.
May 31 - I finally found some time to go to the local library and
rummage through dusty shelves for the lost knowledge I sought. At that
stage it was only a hunch, but long nights of furtive reading paid off.
I was now able to classify them as a distinctive group!
I felt elated as I realised that I have the one weapon that trolls fear
June 3 - How short-lived was my elation. It must have been all
the stress that caused me to accidentally leave some notes lying around
for prying eyes to discover. I am now certain that he knows of my plans.
June 25 - The last few days have been terrible. The tension
caused me to develop an ulcer. I know that I must persevere and be firm
in my resolution. My knowledge could be my salvation, but it could also
be my destruction.
July 1 - Oh God! There was just a peculiar sound outside. I was
so sure that I locked the gate, but then again...
When I opened the window I got a whiff of that putrid smell!
I must not lose control. I must concentrate. These notes should be put
in a safe place. There was another sound! I could swear that I heard a
key in the front door. Where on earth did he get a key? Sly bastard! No
time. I think I've got it. I have....
Footnote to the Investigating
We have studied these notes which implies obvious foul play in the death
of Mr. Eric Smythe, but have found no record that there ever was, or is
a Mr. Geoff Rogers. The deceased seems to have had an active
imagination, maybe even slightly unstable? How would you like us to
proceed? - Sgt. Doyle (Forensics)
© Etienne A. Marais