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Pisky's ATS Story

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posted on Apr, 13 2004 @ 08:03 AM
what a treat! I've been really busy lately, and so haven't had a chance to sit down with ATS for long enough to keep up with the story, so I just had three chapters to read back to back.
What better way to spend my lunch hour.
brilliant as ever

posted on Apr, 13 2004 @ 04:39 PM
You captured me to a tee !!!
Absolutely Brilliant piece of work. I can't wait to see what happens next !

posted on Apr, 16 2004 @ 09:33 PM
that was have a very unique style of writing
carry on...

posted on Apr, 21 2004 @ 09:16 PM
Chapter Eleven - Raiders ... and the dog's bark

Helena Justina woke to a throbbing headache and a tongue that felt like sandpaper. Keeping her eyes closed, she pushed herself into a sitting position and groaned. "What hit me ?", she asked no one in particular.
"Five pints of 'Best Pixyland'" laughed Valerius from his perch on the windowsill, "Its an aquired taste. KayEm put you to bed after you started dancing on the table"
Helena's eyes opened wide, the early morning light pouring from the windows making her wince; "Oh my god !!! I didnt ! ... Did I ?"
"I think the footprints are still there". Valerius grinned. The legionary was thoroughly enjoying himself as he watched Helena squirming in embarassment, pulling her gown tighter and reorganising her tangled hair.
"Did I do ... you know ... anything else ?"
Valerius shook his head. "You mean apart from challenging Tobias to an arm wrestling match?"
Helena closed her eyes. "I feel sick"
"Then you won't want breakfast then ?", Valerius said, standing and heading towards the door; "Pity that. Eggs, bacon, sausages, fried bread ...".
And at that, Helena threw up.

Pisky sat at the high table drawing a picture onto a piece of cloth while beside him, KayEm read the latest news report delivered by Erisian earlier in the morning. The hacker had managed to access the Corporate Propaganda Server and was currently occupied in breaking down the codes to allow her to reach the high level database. This would allow her to read most, if not all, of the original corporate reports before they were modified by the propaganda ministry. Meanwhile her search spiders were busy digging out as much news as possible, and it was this information that KayEm was engrossed in reading.
A grinning Valerius appeared at the door, followed a few seconds later by a white faced and rather embarassed Helena. "What's that you're doing, Pisk ?", the legionary asked, his naturally loud voice echoing around the cavernous hall. "New flag", Pisky replied, adding the finishing touches to his masterpiece. He held up the object for Valerius' consideration. A three foot wide 'Pixy Baby' grinned happily from the centre of the black and white Cornish cross. Pisky had an equally wide grin on his face, while KayEm just smiled and shook her head prettily.
Helena put her hand on her forehead and walked gingerly to the table taking the seat on the other side of KayEm; "I want to apologise for my behaviour last night", she said softly; "Honestly, I don't usually do that kind of thing ... it's just that ..."
"No apology necessary", KayEm said, placing the report onto the table and turning to Helena. "It takes quite a while to get used to 'Best Pixyland'"; she smiled; "Now, would you like something for that headache ?"
"Yes, please"; Helena started to nod but realised that wasn't the best thing to do with her head feeling as if Angover was using it for an anvil, so she just crossed her hands over her queasy stomach and closed her eyes.

"So", said Tobias, pushing aside the remnants of his breakfast and leaning back in his chair, "thats sorted". Around the table sat the rest of 'Strike Force Pixy', accompanied by their Roman guests. All had indulged in hearty breakfasts, except for Helena who had found it difficult enough just to stay in the same room. The discussion had revolved upon the request that the Romans had made with regards the problems at Butser and it had been decided that they would return to the settlement accompanied by three of the Pixies, those being Benjj, Pantha and an excited Erisian. Loki's burnt hand was wrapped in gauze bandages and would be unuseable for at least a week while Tobias had other plans for Pisky and KayEm.
Tobias stood, picked up Excalibur from where he had lent it against the wall and started for the door, followed by the rest of the group. "Pisky", he said as he reached the courtyard, "A word in your shell-like".

The stablehands had prepared horses for each of the travellers. A relieved Helena had given the donkey to Tamsin, who was currently riding the animal around the yard, a gleaming smile on her face. Benjj fastened his shotgun into the holster on the saddle of his horse while Pantha checked the safety of the SA80 she had used ever since she arrived at Stokesay.
Valerius looked every inch a Roman cavalryman, his armour glinting in the morning sun.
Erisian came rushing down the steps leading from the solar, having changed her normal clothes in favour of something more suited to travel. A dark green tunic reached to the top of her legs, clasped tight at the midriff by a brown belt from which a small dagger hung in its scabbard. She wore a pair of similarly coloured leggings, and her feet were protected by knee-high brown boots. On her head, she sported a green hat placed at a jaunty angle.
"Fook me, lass", said Valerius as Erisian put her saddlebags over the back of her steed; "You look like one of those Elves from Lord of the Rings".
Erisian put her head to one side and looked directly at Valerius; "I amar prestar aen, han mathon ne nen, han mathon ne chae a han noston ned 'wilith"
"Pardon me ?"
Erisian climbed onto her horse and turned it head towards Valerius; "The world is changed; I can feel it in the water, I can feel it in the earth, I can smell it in the air."
"Bugger me", the Legionary muttered, "Is there no end to this girl's talents ?".

Having finished his conversation with the pixy, Tobias walked over to the group.
"Are you sure three is enough?", Helena asked with concern as he checked her harness, "I would have thought seven at least".
Tobias grinned; "The Magnificent Seven ? ... No, three is fine. Benjj and Pantha are both veterans and Erisian is just ... well ... Erisian". He smiled at the girl, recognising her multiple talents. She blushed and smiled back.

The ride had so far been uneventful. The horses were grateful for a long ride, having been kept inside the stable during the recent rainstorm. Benjj and Pantha rode in front, with the Romans next, while Erisian rode slightly back to make sure they couldn't be taken by surprise from behind. Benjj consulted his map, checked with Pantha for confirmation and had just replaced it into his saddlebags when a rattle of gunfire stopped them in their tracks.
Pantha spun around, her eyes scanning the woodlands either side of the road. In the distance a tall hill stood alone, small white shapes demoting the presence of sheep while a small stream ran nearby, supplying the animals with water.

Pantha turned back to the road just in time to see three figures rush from the treeline to take position directly before her.
"Stay exactly where you are !"; The voice was young but self assured.
The three raiders stood with their weapons held casually, a relaxed air showing that they had done this kind of thing many times over.
"Don't try to run". Came the voice again. The speaker wore a pair of urban camoflage jeans and a black T-shirt with the logo "First Lady of Cool" just above her heart. A thick belt completed the ensemble, from which two holsters were fastened. Unfortunately, the accompanying pistols were pointed directly at Benjj and Pantha.
"Fook me, its Lara Croft", said Valerius in a sarcastic tone.
"You wish", came the reply.
The woman in the centre, who Benjj estimated was a few inches shy of six feet, gestured to the group to dismount. They did so slowly, Benjj making sure he knew exactly where his shotgun was at all times. Valerius muttered imprecations as he clambered from his horse while Helena dismounted under protest, all the time glaring at the three raiders. "I knew three wasn't enough !!!", she spat in righteous indignation. "In fact I ..."

"Down !", yelled a voice from the woods at the same time as two vaguely spherical items flew into the air and slammed onto the ground between the two groups. With muffled bangs, the grenades exploded, spewing white mist-like smoke into the air. Benjj and Pantha grabbed their weapons from their saddle holsters as the horses took fright and ran. The three raiders spun around, peering through the smoke but couldn't even see each other let alone anyone else.
"Close your eyes !!!"; The unmistakable figure of KayEm appeared beside Benjj and Pantha, grabbing them by their arms and pulling them out of the smoke. Pisky did the same for Helena and Erisian, while yelling to Valerius to follow his voice.
"Over there, quick", KayEm ordered Pantha, pulling off her gas mask and throwing it onto the floor. As she did so, the pixy appeared with Helena and Erisian in tow, tearing off his own mask as he drew his Scythian bow.
"Where's Marcus ?", Helena asked in a concerned voice.
"We'll find him", KayEm said, scanning for any sign of the legionary who was still somewhere within the smokescreen. Suddenly one of the raiders appeared from the mist, coughing and retching, her eyes tearing. "I suggest you drop that before you hurt yourself", said Benjj, aiming his shotgun directly at her head. The startled woman dropped the machine gun and fell to her knees, coughing uncontrollably. Benjj strode over, picked up the discarded weapon and pulled the disoriented captive away from the road.

"Goddammit !!!" came a distinctly American voice from within the mist, "They got Asala !"
"Which way ?", came an anwering voice.
"Here ... No ... here ... # !" The second raider staggered out of the gas, shook her head and blinked. She flicked her long brown hair out of her eyes just in time to find herself looking at the business end of Pantha's SA80. Pantha grinned and disarmed her before helping her away from the smoke and towards the trees.

The smoke was dissipating by now and faint shapes could be discerned. One woman and the tall, lanky shape of Valerius. "# !!!" came the familiar Northern voice; This was followed by a high pitched yell and a crash as the Legionary shot out of the mist to land on his arse in the road. "Bastard !!!', he ranted as his attacker leaped out of the smoke, somersaulted over him and landed, pistols aimed, directly in front of KayEm. Blinking rapidly to disperse the effects of the smoke, the woman grinned, "Lady Cool at your service", she said; "Want to give up now ?".
KayEm grinned and pointed to her right. Keeping her pistols aimed at KayEm, the woman risked a quick glance in the direction she was gesturing.
The pixy stood, his bow taught, an arrow aimed at her throat.
"Looks like a standoff", LadyCool said, living up to her name.
And it would have stayed that way if it hadn't been for a savage looking dog who shot out of the trees, leaped into the air and slammed into Pisky. Dropping his bow, the pixy struggled to defend himself from the snapping jaws of the hound, a Staffordshire Bull Terrier. Pisky yelled abuse and desperately struggled to keep the dog's fangs from his throat. He well knew their reputation for loyalty and their tenacious nature, having owned such a dog years earlier. Twisting sideways, he pushed the dog away from him and tried to stand. The dog leaped again, Pisky dropped and the dog flew over him, spinning in the air, fangs snapping. Pisky grabbed onto a low-hanging tree branch and pulled himself into the tree.
"Don't you dare hurt my dog !!!", screamed Lady Cool, turning rapidly and aiming straight at the pixy. Her fingers tensed on the triggers. Then everything went black.

Lady Cool opened her eyes to find a tall redhead looking down at her. "You bitch !!!", she snapped, "That hurt !!!"
"Better than the alternative", replied KayEm, sliding her Wakizashi back into its scabbard.
"You hit me with that ???" Lady Cool snapped back, "You could have cracked my skull ... have you lost your mind?
KayEm grinned; "According to my last psych evaluation ... yes".
Lady Cool rubbed the back of her head where a sore spot denoted exactly where the hilt of the sword had struck. "Oh great", she replied, "a comedian !"
"Actually", KayEm said, pointing to where Pisky sat on the branch muttering abuse towards the dog who now stood beside her fallen mistress. "He's the comedian. I'm the cupcake with the rather sharp sword". She held out her hand. "I'm KayEm". Lady Cool grasped the proffered hand and allowed herself to be pulled upright, then rubbed her head and winced, looking over to where her two companions sat against a tree, covered by Benjj and Pantha.
Pisky dropped from the tree and walked over, rubbing his arm where he had been bitten by LadyCool's canine companion.
"that fecking thing's dangerous" he muttered as KayEm inspected the damage.
"She thought you were attacking me", came the reply, "So she went for you".
"It wasn't me who had the fecking guns !", the pixy snapped while KayEm took an antiseptic wipe from her kit and began cleaning the wound. Pisky ranted like a trooper in a mixture of languages picked up over the years. LadyCool couldn't understand much of it, but picked up the general gist and left the cursing Pisky to the tender ministries of his wife.

LadyCool walked over to where Benjj and Pantha were ensuring that their captives had no chance of escape. She sat opposite her companions and shrugged her shoulders; "Thats us finished then", she said, stroking her dog's short fur and sighing sadly. "It was good while it lasted". The dog licked her face.
"God, I really could do with a cigarette", said the girl sitting directly opposite. She spoke in a New York accent and her long brown hair hung down, covering part of her face. Her hazel eyes flickered from side to side as she watched carefully for any reaction from their captors, but received nothing.
"Sarah, one day those things will kill you", LadyCool replied, "You really aught to try to give up, you know".
"I'll give up smoking when I give up coffee", said her companion, grimacing, "and that's not going to happen".
"They're coming over", whispered the other woman who, until now, had said nothing. LadyCool turned to see KayEm and Pisky walking towards them.
"OK", said KayEm; "Introductions first. I like to know who I'm talking with". She pointed to the pixy, who was flexing his bitten arm and muttering obscenities; "This is Pisky", she began. "Over there is Benjj and Pantha. The 'Elf' is Erisian, and the two Romans are Helena Justina and Marcus Valerius".
"We've already met", snapped Helena angrily, before storming away to check on the horses.
"You next", KayEm said, putting her hands on her hips and staring at the three captives.
LadyCool stood, followed by her companions. "You already know my name", she said before indicating the New Yorker; "This is Smiling Sarah, although what she's got to smile about is anyone's guess". Sarah pushed her hair away from her face and gave a little wave. "Hi".
"And this is Asala".
Asala nodded slightly, her laid-back demeanour helping somewhat to diffuse the tension;"So what do you plan to do with us?", she asked.
"That depends on you", KayEm said. "We're not corporate so we don't plan on shooting you or locking you in any concentration camp". This brought sighs of relief from the trio.
"There are two options. You can walk away right now and we won't stop you. But one day you're going to try to raid the wrong people, and end up feeding the worms".
"So what's the other option ?" Sarah asked.
"You join us. Come to Stokesay and add your own skills to ours.".
LadyCool looked down to where her dog sat, tongue hanging out; "What about Phoebe ?", She asked, "I won't go anywhere without my dog".
"I would never ask you to", KayEm replied, bending down and tickling the dog behind her ears, "She's cute. Pisky just got on the wrong side of her".
"Just like that fecking hamster", muttered Pisky, remembering the time KayEm's rodent had sunk his teeth into the soft flesh of the pixy's hand.
"Ok Phoebe", said LadyCool, "Shake a paw".
The dog ambled over to where Pisky stood, then lifted one paw into the air. Pisky shook his head in disbelief before taking the paw in his own hand. Phoebe wagged her tail and barked a friendly yap of happiness. Despite his painful arm, the Pixy couldn't help but grin as the dog leaped around trying to lick all and sundry.

"Can I ask a question ?", said Erisian, looking somewhat perturbed. KayEm nodded her confirmation.
"Well", Erisian continued, "How come you pair appeared just at the nick of time?"
KayEm grinned. "Tobias let you go alone, but sent Pisky & me to follow just in case".
"So Tobias knew there was a chance we would be attacked ?"
"Not so much as attacked", KayEm replied, "Helena and Valerius had already said that they weren't badly treated, so we knew no one was likely to be hurt. And we'd rather have this three working with us than some loose cannons who could cause us problems in the future".
Erisian smiled and nodded her understanding.
"Well, it looks like that's sorted then", said Sarah, trying to avoid Phoebe's slobbering tongue as the dog leaped around. "We're in if you want us. Take us to your leader".
"There's only one problem with that", said KayEm; "We're not going straight to Stokesay. We've got something to do first"
LadyCool picked up her pistols and dusted them off before replacing them in their holsters; "What's that ?"
"The Romans have a problem at Butser", KayEm replied; "We're going to see what we can do to help".
"Where exactly is this Butser ?"
"About 180 miles that way"; KayEm pointed through the trees.
LadyCool grimaced at the thought.
"But look at it this way", KayEm continued, "It'll give us time to get to know each other".

[Edited on 13-5-2004 by Pisky]

posted on Apr, 22 2004 @ 09:05 PM
WOW pisky, you sure did get me down! and i wont ever give up coffee!!! that was an awesome story, i love how the team was almost ambushed, but then they turned out to join forces. agian im going to say: awesome story, keep up the good work.

posted on Apr, 23 2004 @ 09:42 AM
Lara Croft, woohoo baby! And you even got my dog in, she's sat next to me as I speak, staring at the monitor (ok, so I have a biscuit packet next to it, she might want that...) Thanks Pisky, got me down to a tee! (btw, in RL I have a hidden talent for sword fighting; in case my machinery runs out at any time

Ahhh waaa *does karate impressions*

posted on Apr, 23 2004 @ 05:25 PM
Only five pints to get me dancing on the table ? ... I'm not some weak willed little girl

thud !!! (Helena's head hits the bar and she floats into oblivion)

Wonderful work though, Pisky. You got me again. Are you really sure you don't have one of your Pixies spying on me ?

posted on Apr, 23 2004 @ 05:31 PM
I really enjoyed that one
and I love the flag.
by the way who is the addition to your avatar?

posted on Apr, 23 2004 @ 11:59 PM
Can't wait to see what the laughing kitten has to do with the story........

posted on Apr, 24 2004 @ 10:29 AM
Yeah, does my dog pull a kitten in some strange love affair? Ok, now that's an example of the randomness that falls out of my mouth sometimes. Phoebe: the new Mrs. Robinson

posted on Apr, 24 2004 @ 02:41 PM
The mystery of the Laughing Kitten will be solved in a few hours. I'm just putting the finishing touches to Chapter 12

posted on Apr, 24 2004 @ 05:13 PM
The morning sun shone through the trees. Inside the glade Pantha was preparing breakfast while Pisky checked on the horses. Sarah was on her third cup of coffee, as was KayEm. Neither could function without a massive infusion of caffeine, which seemed to be a trait particular to Americans. Pisky of course was happy with a flagon of 'Best Pixyland' while the others indulged in the genteel British custom of tea drinking. Phoebe was sitting rather forlornly with a hangdog expression on her face due to the fact that last night she had stolen almost a full cup of cider from the pixy and was now suffering the consequences.
"I've never seen a dog with a hangover", said Valerius, gesturing to Phoebe.
"I have", replied the pixy, "And she was a Staffs Terrier too !"
"Bunch of alkies the lot of them", grinned LadyCool. Phoebe closed her eyes and sighed in the way dogs do when they truly despair of humanity.

Helena Justina had finally got over her disgust with the three raiders. In fact she ruefully agreed to herself that she quite liked them. It was a pity that KayEm had got them to join the Stokesay contigent, as they would definitely have been very useful in Butser despite their lack of classical knowledge. Helena sipped her tea and smiled, thinking of Butser and how pleased she would be to get home - and with help too.

"Hey, Lara", Valerius called out, "How come you ended up out here ?"
LadyCool shook her head and grinned at the nickname. "I was a student", she explained, "Training to be a barrister of all things". She laughed at the irony of a law student ending up as a highway robber. "I shared a house with a couple other girls, and Phoebe of course, and just did whatever students do. Drink mainly", She grinned. "My family went on holiday to sodding Switzerland leaving poor old me stuck here doing exams. They got stuck there when the # hit, lucky beggars. I decided to try to join them, but got stuck in Bromfield. Then I met Sarah and decided to hook up with her and teach the 'brash Noo Yawka' a bit of British culture".
"You wish", grinned Sarah, pouring herself another mug of coffee.
LadyCool sighed and lay back, resting her head on her hands. "I do sometimes wonder what it would have been like if everything had stayed the same".
"I'd be back home by now", Sarah mused, "Relocated like the rest of my family. Probably given some mindless job to do and paid a pittance".
"There's a bunker somewhere in the Adirondacks.", Erisian chimed in, "The Enclave. Maybe they went there".
"I hope not", Sarah said. "I'd rather they were just relocated in some ghetto than getting shot at by the corporates".
"Like us, you mean ?". LadyCool leaned over and squeezed Sarah's shoulder.
"That's different", the New Yorker replied, "I was always the black sheep anyway. I don't think they'd be able to do what I've had to do. I just want them safe".
Asala looked over from where she was performing her daily exercise routine. As a dancer, she used to do so regularly before everything fell apart, and she could see no reason why she should stop now. "I know what you mean", she said breathlessly, "If I didn't know where my family was, I'd be worried too". She walked over and sat beside her companions.
"What happened ?", asked Sarah, intrigued.
"They managed to get to the Isle of Wight before it was cordoned off", Asala explained. "I was in Shrewsbury, helping a friend to move house. The whole thing caught us by surprise. My folks got to the Isle but just afterwards, the corporates blockaded it".
"I never really worked out why they did that", LadyCool said, stroking Phoebe's ear, "Why not just take over like they did with the mainland".
"No idea", Asala replied, "Not enough people I assume".
"I'll have a look for you when we get back to Stokesay", Erisian said, placing her empty cup on the ground. Asala smiled her thanks.

On they rode, hour after hour, mile upon mile. Horses were now the preferred mode of travel, primarily because they were versatile but also because most of the petrol supply had been requisitioned by the corporates. In order to quaify for petrol, a person had to prove that he or she was in the pay of the corporations and required the fuel for corporate use. That ruled out Pisky or any of his collegues. Stokesay had a small amount left, but it was being kept to power the generators and for emergencies. Even the quad bikes were standing empty. But the horses were perfect for this type of travel. They could traverse rough terrain whereupon the corporate hummers and motorcycle outriders were limited as to where they could go. If the corporates needed to get somewhere otherwise unaccessible, they used their notorious black helicopters. As far as they were concerned, horses were an outmoded form of travel. Which suited the Pixies right to the ground.

Needless to say, the addition of three new members required doubling up on the horses. LadyCool shared one with KayEm, while Asala sat behind Pantha and Sarah joined the elven Erisian. Phoebe loped along beside them, occasionally leaping into the air and giving a happy bark. Pisky rode point, his eyes scanning the horizon, his pixyish ears alive for any sound out of place. Hence it was the pixy who first picked up the sound of gunfire echoing from the woodlands to their right.

Pisky dismounted and ran over towards the treeline. KayEm handed her reins to LadyCool before doing the same. The pixy listened carefully, a strange expression on his face. "Weird", he whispered to his wife. "It sounds as if someone's giggling".
"Could be some sick bastard playing 'Most Dangerous Game'", KayEm spat, referring to the Corporate Elite's newest entertainment. Elite CEO's and their hanger-ons often met together for hunting trips, in which corporate prisoners were released in woodlands and hunted down. The more 'trophies' killed, the better chance of promotion. The Elite took their game very seriously - as did KayEm. Whenever she found such a hunting party, they often found out to their cost exactly what it is like to be the hunted rather than the hunter.
Benjj joined them. "If we split up we've got a better chance of finding out what's going on", he said. "Unless you think we should just leave things alone".
There was a burst of automatic fire. "Definitely corporate", the pixy explained. "Could be someone in trouble".
KayEm nodded; "Lets just play it by ear", she said, and ran over to the column to pass on the message.

Leaving Erisian and Asala to look after the horses, the rest of the travellers split into couples to began the search. Benjj and Pantha - veterans of old - headed South, while LadyCool and Sarah split off slightly and headed along an almost hidden trackway.
Helena and Valerius took the SouthEast trackway, which was more accessible than the one used by their companions. Pisky and KayEm melted into the trees as if they had never existed.

Helena and Valerius moved as quietly as possible through the woods. Muffled gunfire could be heard, usually followed immediately by muttered curses denoting that the target had escaped yet again. A crashing sound came from the right and a pair of militia thugs burst through the undergrowth, weapons aimed high. Both groups were startled to see the other, but it was the Militiamen who recovered first. "Drop your weapons !!!", the largest of the two ordered.
The Romans complied, but took their time about it.
"Seen a kitten ?", asked the smaller, a whippet of a man with the eyes of a snake. Helena shivered involuntary.
"A kitten ?", asked Valerius with a disdainful sneer, "You're chasing a fookin' kitten ? ... You need machine guns to catch a kitten ??? What a pair of wusses".
The larger thug rankled at that and with one stride reached Valerius and smashed him in the mouth. The legionary flew backwards and crashed to the ground. Helena screamed as the other thug grabbed her and clamped his hand over her mouth. Valerius lifted his head. Glaring at the thug he spat out one of his teeth and struggled to his feet. A savage kick in the stomach sent him slamming into a tree, where he lay on his side, gasping for air.
"Helena, Drop !!!", came a voice. Helena went limp and the thug holding her lost his balance, toppling over her as she slipped to the ground. Helena grimaced and lashed out, catching him in the groin with her hobnailed Roman walking boots. The thug screamed, his chances of fathering children now negligable. The larger neanderthal spun around; "You'll regret that, bitch", he said, flexing the muscles of his arms and striding towards Helena.
"Hey, Bubbs ... having fun ? !"
The thug stopped and turned. KayEm stood at the side of the clearing, arms folded, with an air of amusement on her face.
The neanderthal sneered and grunted.
KayEm grinned. "I'm afraid I'm going to have to hurt you now", she said.

Sarah was slightly in front of LadyCool as they entered the small glade. A tinkling brook ran along the right hand side, sunlight glistening and making it look like a river of pure light. A small clump of woodland flowers wafted in the slight breeze beside the brook, giving the whole place an etheric tone. But it wasn't this that held Sarah's eyes. It was the little grey and white kitten sitting beside the flowers.
Spying the kitten, Sarah smiled, then her mouth opened in surprise as she realised what he was doing.
The kitten was giggling.
"That is just so ridiculous", LadyCool said, shaking her head at the sight of the little kitten who was rolling around laughing so hard that he had tears in his eyes. "Whoever heard of a laughing kitten ???"
"Is this who they are shooting at ???" Sarah asked, walking over to the cat. He stopped laughing and looked up at her. She bent down and picked up the little ball of fur who immediately nuzzled against her face and started giggling again. "He's cute".
"Phoebe is going to love this", LadyCool said sarcastically. The only use Phoebe had for cats was as target practice and LadyCool knew exactly how the dog would react.

"Drop your weapons, put down the kitten and stand aside". The voice was cold and heartless, causing an involuntary shiver to go through Sarah's spine.
No one moved. The kitten had stopped laughing
Sarah glared around the group, her eyes trying to see through the dark hoods to the faces beneath. "Who the fook are you guys ?"
"Sarah !" LadyCool hissed. "Just do whatever they say".
Sarah looked over at her companion. LadyCool was definitely not the fainting type but right then she looked as if she was ready to do just that. Her face was as white as a sheet and her hands shook. She removed the pistols from their holsters and dropped them to the ground. Sarah looked incredulous. Only KayEm was more self-assured than LadyCool, so whatever it was, it had to be serious. Very serious. Sarah gulped and let her weapon drop.
"That is a very good idea", said the obvious leader; "Listen to your friend. And once we have sorted out this little problem we'll discuss exactly what you are doing here".
"What ???". Despite her discomfort, Sarah was having none of it. Years of living in New York ensured that she was not the type to put up with what she considered 'meaningless crap'.
"Oh my god", LadyCool groaned, "Sarah, please - They're not joking".
"Followers of Azrael never joke", came the cold reply. "Now ... put down the kitten and stand aside". The voice was more menacing this time. The Azraelite cocked his AK and gestured to Sarah to comply with his orders. The Kitten looked up, his sad little eyes pleading for help.

The Azraelite stopped, holding up his hand for silence. A whistling came from back down the track. It was a happy little chirrup, as if the maker had not a care in the world. Sarah and LadyCool turned to see Pisky striding towards them, hands clasped behind his back, nodding his head merrily to the tune. The Azraelites pushed back their hoods, each looking astounded to see such a carefree demeanour in their neck of the woods.
"Greetings !", said Pisky, a grin similar to that of his avatar plastered on his face.
One of the cultists stepped forward; "You are here in contravention of ..."
"Bugger that Borg crap" Pisky said, still grinning, "How's de Mornay ?"
"He is in some pain but that is to be expected", the cultist began, "The arrow was designed to ..." Then he stopped, his mouth open wide. "That information was given only to followers of Azrael", the cultist spat, "How did you get it ?".
"It was my arrow", said Pisky, taking his hands from behind his back to reveal a brace of pistols.
"Say hello to Azrael for me will you ?", And before the cultists had a chance to react, he opened fire.

The stink of cordite and copperly smell of blood filled the glade. Three cultists lay in the centre, one on the way to his god, the others having gone ahead. Pisky stood beside the wounded Azraelite. The man didn't look so arrogant with five bullets in him.
"You imbeciles", he groaned. "You don't know what you have done. Kill it. Kill it now!!!" and with a final grunt, he joined his companions in Azrael's domain.
"What did he say ?", Sarah asked, stroking the kitten as she walked over to where Pisky was now ransacking the cultists bodies.
"He wants us to kill the kitten". replied the pixy, pocketing the cultists ID cards and collecting their weapons.
"What ?!?!?"
"Azraelites are nasty bastards", Pisky explained; "They see it as their duty to send as many people to their 'Angel of Death' as possible. Looks like they have expanded their views to include cute little kittens".
"I was certain were were dead for sure", LadyCool said, having regained her composure somewhat. "I thought no one ever got away from the Death squads"
"So did they"
The kitten leaped from Sarah's arms and walked over to the corpses. He had a sad expression on his face. Then he shrugged his feline shoulders, trotted over to the pixy and grinned.
Pisky leaned down and picked him up. The kitten settled himself on the pixy's sholder and began giggling again.
Pisky smiled and led the way out of the glade.

"See anything?", Erisian asked as Benjj and Pantha returned to the horses.
"Nothing at all", he replied, "But it sounds quiet enough now".
"Did you hear that screaming earlier though ?" Erisian shivered at the thought.
"That was KayEm teaching some neanderthal a lesson", said Helena, pushing through the overhanging branches and walking over to her horse. Behind her Valerius nursed his aching mouth while KayEm followed, cleaning the blade of her sword as she walked.
"How did he take it ?", Pantha asked.
"Badly". Helena smiled.
"Actually", said KayEm, "He couldn't understand that just because he had a big gun, it didn't necessarily follow that he was a big man".
"Remind me never to get on the wrong side of you", grinned Valerius. Then stopped smiling because it just made his mouth hurt.
"Wait !" Benjj held up his hand. "Listen !"
In the depths of the forest the giggling had started up again, only this time it was not accompanied by gunfire. The mystery was soon solved by the appearance of Sarah, LadyCool and their Pixyish companion. Sitting on Pisky's sholder was a small grey and white kitten who was laughing and giggling uncontrollably. The pixy had a smile on his face that reminded all present of his avatar, while Sarah and LadyCool were desperately trying to appear 'cool and collected', but failing atrociously.
"What the fook's that ?" Valerius asked, pointing at the kitten incredulously.
"Pillywiggin", said Pisky.
"And what's a 'Pillywiggin' when it's at home ?" asked Helena, smiling at the tiny feline which was now grabbing hold onto Pisky's jacket lest he fall off his perch.
"It must be his name", the pixy replied; "It's on his collar".
"oh", said Helena, which for some reason made everyone laugh.

A growl cut through the laugher as the dark form of Phoebe paced towards where the kitten sat on Pisky's shoulder. The dog glared at his nemesis, her slavering fangs shining in the afternoon sun. The kitten merely looked down, then dropped from his perch to land directly before the slavering jaws of the terrier. Then he started giggling again. He laughed so hard that he started rolling around the floor before the amazed dog. LadyCool reached over and grabbed Phoebe's collar, but it wasn't necessary. The dog just sat there dumbfounded as the kitten laughed and spluttered, rolling around and howling in kittenish glee.

The moon shone brightly above their campsite. The travellers had made good time, and now, with their goal in sight, they allowed themselves a night of peace and recreation.
Pisky sat beside the fire watching Phoebe sleeping. Beside the dog lay Pillywiggin, his head pillowed against one of the terrier's hindlegs. The kitten was still awake, his eyes shining in the firelight.
"So where do you think he's from then ?", asked Asala after sipping from her mug of 'Best Pixyland'.
"Feck knows", Pisky replied, "But you can guarantee that if the Azraelites are involved, it must be something important".
"Something that threatens them, maybe ?", Asala asked, "I've heard of them, but never met one".
"Believe me", said LadyCool from her place opposite, "You don't want to !"
Asala was unconvinced; "But didn't you raid their headquarters once ?"
"Yes", KayEm replied. "But we lost a good friend doing it".
And for a while after, silence reigned.

But not even those morose thoughts could impinge on the presence of the kitten, who stretched, walked over to the fire and grinned at all and sundry.

And within minutes the depression had lifted, to be replaced by hope and happiness.

[Edited on 13-5-2004 by Pisky]

posted on Apr, 24 2004 @ 05:17 PM
Very Nice Job Pisky.

Your installments are very addictive and well written.
Look forward to the next.


posted on Apr, 24 2004 @ 05:35 PM
laughing kitten, hmmmm bizarre . I can't wait to find out more!

posted on Apr, 24 2004 @ 05:38 PM
Fear not - the kitten plays an important role in the future

posted on Apr, 24 2004 @ 07:27 PM
laughing kitten, who woulda thought! going great so far pisky, can't wait to see what you have comming up next......
this story (if printed) will probably end up being the size of an encyclopedia!!
keep up the awesome writing

posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 02:28 AM

Originally posted by smilingsarah82
laughing kitten, who woulda thought! going great so far pisky, can't wait to see what you have comming up next......
this story (if printed) will probably end up being the size of an encyclopedia!!
keep up the awesome writing

If I ever get my own book printed, I'll send you a signed copy (complete with pix of my avatar and the laughing kitten of course).

posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 11:48 AM
oh my god. A laughing kitten, it's all mad, mad, mad....

Good job

Although LadyCool seems to be going a bit soft

Can't wait to read more, and a whole chapter named after my dog, I feel so proud.

posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 02:06 PM

Originally posted by LadyCool21

Although LadyCool seems to be going a bit soft

Or maybe she knows more about the Azraelites than she is letting on.

Thanks, everyone, for your comments. They are greatly appreciated

The next chapter will be ready in another couple of days.

posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 02:22 PM
Oooh hidden depths
I know something you don't know!

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