As Enchanted on TV: Home Defense Edition

                For weeks, you’ve hunted the late-night landscape, memories of that strange man and his outfit plaguing your dreams. That’s what they are, obviously, dreams. There’s no way some wizard selling snake-oil actually appeared on your set, and then something ate those memories. That’s far too terrifying a possibility to contemplate, yet night after night you find yourself in front of the crackling static, searching. Hunting. Hoping to find nothing, to sooth that nagging suspicion for another evening.

                Tonight is not your night, as the static begins to break, gentle at first, then all at once. Same green eyes, same style of robes and pointy hat, although this time they’re dark red, what someone with taste might call wine-colored. He looks at the camera, perhaps at you directly, only a moment before the words start tumbling forth.

                “Good evening out there in TV Land! I’m Kort Blandle, here with every enchantment and curse needed to keep your life… magical. For those who don’t already know, we’re smack in the middle of Defense Week, a time when I show you all the newest, greatest mystical creations to keep you and yours safe as houses. Well, as safe as Kort’s Hasty Hopping Houses, which again are only intended as temporary shelter, and should not be setup near any cliffs, ravines, ridges, or other high structures that could be hopped off of.”

                He stares at the camera, blinking for several seconds, before figuring out how to gracefully get back on topic.

                “Annnnnnnyfarts, as I was saying, this is Defense Week, and since I brought up houses, that must mean today is all about defending the home. Yes, from castles to condos, there’s a Kort Blandle solution for keeping any property safe. Why, let’s say you’re sitting down to a dinner of fine newt heart and snail eye, when a solicitor rings your bell. You could rise from your seat, go all the way to your spell book, cast the right incantation and turn their teeth into toes, but by the time you’re done the snail eyes will have congealed. Instead, why not have your door protected by Kort’s Sizable Stone Sentries?”

                The camera pans as Kort makes his way across the stage, hurrying past a seared chunk of floor and what appears to be some sort of melted chair. He arrives at a miniature statue on a pedestal; small enough to be picked up, large enough to require both hands. It looks like some sort of burly, horned monster, which Kort quickly sets down.

                “Rather than let dinner grow cold, simply whisper the command word from anywhere in your domicile, and Kort’s Sizable Stone Sentry does the rest.” Kort whispers something inaudible to the camera. Seconds later, the statue flashes, and is now larger than Kort. It begins to move, mighty stone limbs turned graceful by unseen magic.

                “And there we go. These can be set on aggressive or neutral, so you could be the neighborhood curmudgeon or the owner of a death trap, depending on what your particular reputation requires. Ah, but there are more issues than human intruders. What do you do if a rogue beast wanders nearby? For that, let’s go over here and I’ll show…”

                Kort’s attempts to pass the statue are halted. He moves left, the statue raises an arm. Right, same thing. Eventually Kort gets on all fours to try crawling through, to which the statue simply closes it’s legs. Rising back to his feet, Kort hisses something off-screen, then turns back to camera.

                “Seems this one was accidentally left in guarding mode, so while my production assistant Scott grabs the spell to adjust the settings, let’s look at what to do when you spot some weeds in your garden, and they’ve got blood on their stalks. Yes, self-aware magical plants are a threat that grows by the year, and while some of our mystical scholars believe this is the Earth attempting to defend itself, my only concern is making sure you’ve got the hippest lawn on the block, while grass is still a thing.”

                Moving back in the other direction, away from the statue, Kort retreats past the melted chair and his original starting point, over to a table with several house plants and spray bottles setup.

                “Of course, one can’t spend all their day fighting against invading magical plant species, if they could then the gardenomancy discipline wouldn’t even exist. But we can lower the workload by having some of your own plants pitch in to help with maintenance. After all, they’re the ones that the weeds initially came for, isn’t it only fair they do some of the work? Now you can get those lazy freeloaders in gear with Kort’s Functional Flora Formula. Just a few sprays, and you’ll see immediate results.”

                Picking up one of the bottles, Kort spritzes a large fern. Moments later, the leaves start to rustle, then twitch, as it gains the power to move for presumably the first time. Satisfied, Kort sets the bottle down, beaming to camera.

                “Now these will take a little work to train, when first awakened they can be a tad wild, but with some love and discipline, they can be taught to make outstanding garden guards. Why, they can handle vine spiders, silt-slithers, even some of the smaller species of dirt sharks. That’s to say nothing of their low-cost to care for and maintain…”

                While Kort is talking, the fern’s tendrils wrap around the spray bottle. Quietly, it begins dousing the other plants nearby. It is only as he is finishing his spiel that Kort turns around to realize his entire display has been brought to life. They are dragging their pots forward, advancing on him, menacingly.

                “Okay viewers, so this would normally be a bit of an issue. Luckily, we’ve already got our Sizable Stone Sentry to help out, and I see Scott with a scroll changing the settings right now. We’ll have it come take care of these, showing you what both can really do in the process.”

                From off-screen, a pale man with a clipboard sprints past Kort, with the Sizable Stone Sentry thundering only a few steps behind, arms outstretched. A noise can be heard, something that might be akin to a large animated statue crushing through a studio wall. As Kort backs away, toward camera, the plants rise from their pots, giving chase.

                “Well everyone, looks like that’s going to be our time for this week. I’m going to have to handle these with one of Kort’s Wonder Weed Wasters, and since those wipe out all vegetation for a half-mile, they always come with clean-up. I’ve been Kort Blande; I’ll see you next time. Oh, and for those watching through a human, don’t forget the wipe the memories of your hosts!”

                The screen goes black. You sit in the silence of the night, wondering if you’ll remember any this come morning.