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The Voyages of the Penelope and the Yydryl

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posted on Oct, 31 2012 @ 07:45 PM
Nenothtu, peering around the doorframe to gauge the effects of his handiwork and hopefully draw some fire so he could pinpoint the location of the next interloper, heard the scream. Flicking his eyes in that direction, he was horrified to see zombie hordes pouring in through the back of the building, and munching on the inhabitants. Backing away slowly, so as to not draw attention, he turned to Tibbs and said "We gotta bolt - drop back and regroup. There's been some new actors introduced. Lots of 'em". At just that point, a zombie on the inside, not overly bright as zombies are wont to be, picked up a cable to have a taste of it. The ensuing flash and explosion propelled neno and Tibbs over the railing and onto the ground below.

Landing hard on his back with an "oomph!" of air forced out of his lungs, neno saw... the Starwolf. Flying in upside down, of all things. Margo was slowly rotating the starship, and it looked for all the world like she was bringing the weapons of the Starwolf to bear on the structure where all the offensive action was. As it rotated, neno muttered "women drivers! " then realizing what she was doing, he screamed "Oh Shi..." as he dove behind a rock outcropping, Tibbs unceremoniously deposited beneath his body to shield the little man from what was about to come.

"Omigods! Don't launch the nukes! DON'T LAUNCH THE NUKES!" Neno muttered as he tried to dig a trench in the dirt with his jaw. Tibbs, for his part sumblimely unaware of what was transpiring from his hidden position, seemed to be muttereing a muffled "this is VERY undignified!"

Margo, trying to maneuver the Starwolf within the confines of the vast cavern, saw the zombie hordes assaulting from the back of the building, but the flash that propelled neno over the rails held more interest to her. She didn't know who or what was giving neno trouble from inside the building, but seeing his apparently lifeless body cartwheeled over the railing had a decided effect on her.

This man, for all his faults, was all she had left in the universe. She'd had nothing, and so whatever it was he'd given her was... everything. That was all she had, and she'd be damned to see it end just that quick without some righteous retribution. It was unfortunate that she had the weaponry of a star ship at her command, meant for battle between starships in the vast emptiness of space, rather than against structures in the confines of a cavern.

Could a cyborg feel love? She'd never really questioned it, but in that instant decided that the human part of her could - and did. the terrifying thing about love is that an organism capable of feeling it can also feel rage, and a horrible rage she felt when seeing her lover tossed out like a rag doll. It looked to her like whatever was inside that building had just taken everything from her - everything! And she was determined to leave them nothing as well. She wheeled the Starwolf about and brought the combat cannons to bear on the structure. In doing so, she missed seeing her "everything" dive behind a rock.

Margo hit the button, and bright blue bolts of ionized energy started pounding the building, unleashing hell on the structure - and everything in it... the hell meant for space ship to space ship combat.

posted on Oct, 31 2012 @ 08:20 PM
The results were predictable, had anyone other than neno feared enough to predict them. The building, and a good part of the cavern wall, were reduced to pools of glowing liquid, which would eventually solidify into slag. The only thing that stopped the onslaught was when the heat got to be too much for nenothtu. He jumped up and tucked Tibbs unceremoniously under an arm, and ran like hell, bent over to shield Tibbs from the heat, to a more hospitable location - directly under the Starwolf.

Margo, seeing the motion, flicked her eyes in that direction and felt her heart catch in her throat - or at least it would have if she had had one, she decided - when she saw neno running hell bent for leather to get away from the carnage... straight back to her! The gravity pulling her downward against the seat restraints of the Starwollf in her upside down position would have emptied her stomach - again, if she'd had one - when she abruptly flipped the star ship back over and upright to settle it on the cavern floor and pick up her man.


Neno dodged the landing gear as the Starwolf settled by skipping backwards... 4 or 5 times before he was done. He scanned the weapon racks to make sure the nukes were intact, only to be distracted to find they - and their mount points - were entirely missing. "Whut the...?" he muttered, but then the hatch flew open and Margo fairly sailed therefrom, launching herself straight at him, and into his arms. What the heck was a fella supposed to do? He caught her, to keep her from unceremoniously dumping herself on the cavern floor and potentially bruising her dignity.

Margo, for her part, glommed on to neno like there was no tomorrow - it hadn't been that long ago that she had been convinced there WASN'T. Nenothtu found at that point that when a cyborg hugs you, you pay attention! try as he might, he couldn't get her arms peeled off his neck, nor unbury her head from his shoulder.

Tibbs, uncomfortable at being a part of this entire scene, muttered a muffled "put me down, you oaf! This is VERY undignified!" from under neno's arm, and neno complied, releasing Tibbs in an unceremonious heap in order to try using both arms to peel Margo off of him.

"What the hell has got into you, woman? It's just another day at the office!" neno said in his effort to extract Margo, who seemed to be just another of his appendages at this point for all the luck he was having.

Between sobs and shoulder soakings, Margo managed to get out "I... I thought you were DEAD you cantankerous old SOB! Don't you EVER leave me like that again!"

Puzzled, neno replied "How the hell do you kill the indestructible? You can't get rid of me THAT easy - with just a little bit of interstellar combat unleashed onto a rock ball! Yer gonna have to try harder next time. That just wasn't enough. I'm well informed that I'll ALWAYS be around... unless you can manage to choke me to death! UNHAND ME, WOMAN! Otherwise I'll have to carry you aboard! This is embarrassing! What if the little zombies see?"

She didn't so he did, Tibbs bringing up the rear muttering the whole time about the indignity of it all, and neno muttering about how he wasn't going ANYWHERE, and would she please UNHAND HIM!

edit on 2012/11/1 by nenothtu because: (no reason given)

posted on Nov, 5 2012 @ 02:08 PM

* ~ * Mist * ~ *

‘Now aint this just a fine waste!‘ Argus exhausted his breath a stream of smoky cold vapor wafting over his horses ears. ‘An education like yours an all yer doin’ is fillin the lads head full a holes.’

Quiet laughed and Argus continued.

’Good God man whatever good sense the boy ever had’s gonna leak right outta his vera brains with all yer talk a standing stones and fire breathing giants!‘ Argus spit twice over his left shoulder gripping sotto voice, ‘Lost souls appearin’ in the mist my red freckled arse.’

‘Oh come on now he’s just a lad.’ Quiet laughed again, ‘Do ya forget how you yerself teethed on the same stories when you were a boy?’ He asked reigning his horse away from Argus‘s tetchy stallion.

‘I was ner a boy.’ Argus stood in his saddle to fart a little his face contorting like he’d been served up peas for supper.

‘And I suppose you popped right outt’a our darling mother full grown then?’ Quiet snorted jostling the lad behind him who couldn’t stop giggling enjoying the brother’s argument enormously.

Argus hid a grin behind one huge fist and a mock yawn. Fact was he did enjoy his brother’s stories even if they did make the hairs on his arms prickle up in gooseflesh but refusing to back down he wagged a sausage like finger at Quiet squinting an eye at the boy. ‘The fine point of it is you of all men should be spending yer time teaching the boy his letters. Not foolishness.’ Argus nodded sagely knowing he’s won.

‘And just how might I be teachin’ him the fine art a scribing atop this swaying bag a bones?’ Quiet’s old gelding nickered, ‘Anyhow, the lad does his lessons right well around the fire each night doesn‘t he.‘ Quiet jabbed his elbow into the lad who clung to the back of his saddle leather like a burr. ‘Tell him what you’ve learned boy.’

Given all the encouragement he needed the boy began repeating his letters slowly but surely in a high sing song voice.

Argus rolled his eyes sucking his mustache under his lower lip. He’d heard the boy go through his rote so many times he was learning his letters himself.

edit on 5-11-2012 by silo13 because: counter

posted on Nov, 5 2012 @ 02:39 PM

* ~ * Lost * ~ *

‘Argus! Ya great jug head would ya stop!‘ Quiet burst out still half asleep. The boy was missing from behind his saddle.

Wheeling his warhorse Argus led the stud at a prance back to where Quiet’s more peaceable animal stood shedding steam and hot cloudy breath that did nothing to warm the icy pre-dawn.

‘What’re you going on about.’ Argus frowned and leaning from his saddle checked behind Quiet. ‘Where’s the boy?’ Argus barked.

‘That’s what I’m telling you. I fell asleep. The lad must have done the same and fallen from my horse.’ Quiet held his mount still for fear the gelding’s great iron shoes would crush the boy to a small wet spot on the path should he have fallen under the beasts heavy hooves.

Argus swore climbing down from his stallion. ‘You stay here with the stud or we’ll all be lost in the muck!‘ Argus tied his mount’s chain and leather reigns to a gnarled branch a ways from the other animal and stomped off to look for the boy. ‘Probably just went ta drain his reed...‘ Argus melted into the mist keeping up a long stream of complaints his voice his only company.

The rising fog congealing from the ground up made it impossible to see more than an arms length before him or below. Argus snorted in disgust. He was probably the only Newscot who loathed the filmy stuff. Whistling softly keeping his eyes busy with the shadows he crossed the fingers on his right hand against evil and spit again, the third time that hour. For a warrior who knew no fear the mist conjured up a battle to keep his wits gathered. It spun it’s clingy wet web cloying as Quiet’s tales making a fine romping ground for ghosts to sneak and banshees to hide, for all those tiny creeping things of secret to nip around his boots unseen. Argus bucked and shied like a green colt when another branch of heather slapped his ankles.

‘I’ve not found him yet!’ Argus hollered from a distance. Quiet smiled. He knew Argus’s superstition rose with the moon and his bellowing bolstered his own courage as it did the men his brother led into battle. When his brother roared another curse Quiet shook his head wryly but any answer he might have offered would be drown in air as gray and cloudy as old wash water. Thick as a blanket the fog rolled around Quiet enveloping him but not warming. Quiet kneed his gelding closer to the other horse before losing sight of him all together.

* ~ * *** * ~ *

Awake for sounds of his brother it was a sweet keen weeping that caught Quiet’s ear. A soft heartbroken cry reminding him of his own ma sobbing over his father’s bloodless body tied a cross-back over the very horse Quiet now road. And there is was again. The heart shorn sob of a woman’s soul gutted and ripped in two.

Quiet’s gelding lifted his head pricking his ears. With a nicker and wrench of the bit the horse pulled the reigns free from Quiet’s grip, Quiet let him have his head. The gelding had a soft spot for the ladies with their pockets full of apples and honeycomb, the animal would find her where he would surely fail.

‘Show yourself lass. As God’s own I’ll not harm ye.’ Quiet called softly his gelding moving steadily forward. ‘I’m here to help,’ he called again but the girl didn’t respond. Leaning over his horse’s neck Quiet wound his fingers in it’s thick mane and whispered for him to search on.

edit on 5-11-2012 by silo13 because: counter

posted on Nov, 5 2012 @ 02:49 PM

* ~ * Argus? * ~ *

The haze had thickened to lumpy soup, the cattle path thinned to a goat track. Argus didn’t like the wet hide feel of it clinging to the hairs of his legs making them rise up like spines on a boars back. His longsword unsheathed the giant warrior used the weapon like a blind man’s stick poking this way and that to find his way. When the trail ended abruptly leaving no trace of which way to continue Argus sensed more than heard a bewailing cry he took to be the lads.

‘Boy! Quit your whining and follow me voice. I’ll not squish ya lad, I promise!’ Argus strayed into the brush the wailing giving the knap at his neck a pinch and cold shiver. To his left a stick broke, to his right the weeping came again but he could still see naught. His ears nearly grew points his eyes bugged from his head with searching. Argus began swinging his sword in a larger arch as if the milky morning air grew long spines in need of clearing.

‘Mam...’ He heard the boy for sure now, ‘Please Mam, it’ll be a’right. You just wait until...’ But the rest of the boy’s voice was swallowed by the fog.

‘BOYO!’ Argus did roar now not caring if he scared the lad or not. He’d had enough of the cloying air and sad sobbing, the little things scrapping against his legs and flattening under his boots. Setting his teeth Argus marched on.

‘Argus! I knew you’d come!’ From nowhere the boy threw himself at the warrior and all but climbed Argus's leg. Argus jumped through his skin in fright nearly taking the lad’s head off with his long sword. The boy didn’t seem to notice.

“What in the bloody hell are you on about!’ Argus’s curse was known to make grown men’s britches go yellow but the lad only tugged at Argus’s hand his eyes shining like fairy fire.

‘I found her Sire! I really did! A Lady in the mist just like Quiet’s story!’ The boy’s lips were berry blue with cold his moth-eaten cloak gone from his back his little robins body shivering against the elements with fear and excitement.

‘You mean you didn’t fall from the horse? Yer in one piece lad?’ Argus grabbed the boy flipping him upside-down and back again checking for injuries.

‘Of course not!’ He giggled with the rough handling.

Argus swore roundly meting out a gentle shake that nearly rattled the lad’s milk teeth from his gums. Throwing him up over his back and onto his shoulders Argus plodded forward.

‘Why you’re just like ridding Quiet’s gelding‘! The boy squealed in delight digging his heels into the hollow of Argus’s armpits.

‘I’ll squish ye yet ye lad.’ Argus burst out with a mighty laugh wondering how the little tic got away with insults he’d pound a grown man into a pulp over. The boy only giggled.

‘Quit your folderol and just show me to yer lady.’ Sheathing his sword Argus walked on as the boy commanded.

edit on 5-11-2012 by silo13 because: counter

posted on Nov, 6 2012 @ 01:30 AM

* ~ * Rendezvous * ~ *

Jeni was so cold her fingers refused to obey. She even failed to keep the child sized cape from falling off Adam’s shoulders. Adam? He was no more help or aware than her fingers. Like giving orders to a dog he did what he was told and no more. Sit. Stay. Don’t move. Jeni hated it but the choice wasn’t hers.

For hours after ‘arriving’ she’d been trying to find tinder for a fire, a nook or crevice to escape the weather and for hours all she’d succeeded in doing was not losing Adam in the cursed mist thicker and colder than anything she’d ever imagined. Wherever this Scotland was Adam had wanted so dearly? He might as well have wished them to a colder version of hell. Then just when she’d found a ripe outcrop of rocks scattered with little clumps of dried brush tipped in pinks and red? She’d no strength left to rip the gnarly flowered bush from the crags, her fingers fumbling too badly to light them if she had.

At the end of her endurance Jeni wondered if she hadn’t conjured up the boy who appeared from between the folds of fog walking straight to her like he had a map. Shivering so hard Jeni thought he might be in the throws of a fit the boy surprised her by removing his cloak and like a man tucking it around her shoulders. Without waiting for a word he promised to ‘be right back’ disappearing as quickly as he’d come. When he left? Jeni’s hope went with him. Even if logic told her any imagined hero of hers would have been huge and strong not small and boy. Who limped. Badly. Her little hero had sacrificed his only cloak lending her the faith she needed to survive. And if he said not to move, she wouldn’t - accept to place the rag around Adam’s shoulders instead of her own.

* ~ * Help’s on the Way * ~ *

‘Oh Argus just wait until you see her! She’s got awful nice red hair and a man with her. A dumbster dressed as queer as the jackanapes I saw at the fair! An he just sits there all stony eyed a droolin’ away while she goes on a weepin’ and a wailin’ and...’

‘Just show me to them boyo or I’ll buck you off where we stand!‘ Argus had a shallow well for holding all the boy’s jabbering especially when the whelp was chattering so close to his ear he was spitting in it.

‘But I tell ya they were right here!’ Boy clambered down from Argus’s back making swimming motions with his hands to clear the mist.

‘Here!’ He disappearing under Argus’s feet. ‘They’re right here!’ He hailed again. Argus had to curb himself from bending over to look between his knees. Instead he turned and trailed after the cub like she dog trailing a lost pup promising himself all the while the moment they got back to Quiet he’d squish his brother not the boy.

‘See! I told ye I’d find help didn’t I!’ Triumphant the boy held out his hand to the ‘Lady’ helping her rise unsteadily to her feet. And sure enough there was a ‘dumbster‘ like a dead lump not moving an inch on the cold hard ground. Argus sucked in his breath in disbelief. The boy hadn’t told a lie. The lass’s hair was a wild a red as any sunrise her huge doe eyes set in a heart shaped face so achingly beautiful it made his innards ache. As Beautiful as his own sweet girl from his dreams and so real the warrior had to resist the urge to pinch her to make sure she wouldn't disappear. Argus swore again with the strangeness of it. It was like one of his brother’s stories had turned to blood and bone from the very mists of the mountainside.

Jeni’s eyes broke so wide, her expression so unbelieving when Argus forced his bulk into the small clearing she looked owlish. Blinking again her eyes caught at his girth. Blinking once more her eyes traveled up his chest covered as it was in leather and fur. But before she could blink again, before she could tilt her head back to look above his shoulders? Her eyes rolled back in her head her face bleached white as a new lamb. Angus caught her before she hit the ground.

‘An I’ll kill ya dead if ya hurt her! I’ll kill ya I will! The boy shrieked and attacked Argus like a fury kicking at his shins and striking at his middle with small sharp fists. It was like being assaulted by a tiny woodpecker. Argus grappled the boy by the scruff giving him another shake before tossing him over his shoulder and onto his back again.

‘If you got any dumber lad you’d be a stick. I don’t hurt lasses but I can promise ye I might well start with boys if you don’t use yer head fer something other than to show off yer ears.‘ Argus chuckled liking the boys spit even if he was as daft as a knob on a tree. ‘Now be me lookout and navigate us back to Quiet so we can find a place to make a fire. The bunch of you’re near froze through.’

‘Navigate?’ The boy whispered his fingers clenched in to Argus’s hair bringing tears a pain to the big man’s eyes.

‘Navigate. It means ta show me the way man!’ Argus only just resisted bellowing.

‘What about the dumbster?’ The lad couldn’t see him through the mist risen above Argus’s waist.

‘I got ‘im lad don't you fear.’ With one tree trunk of an arm cupping the lass to his side Argus pulled the sack-faced man across the ground behind him by his scruff. It wasn’t pretty but it would get the job done.

edit on 6-11-2012 by silo13 because: counter

posted on Nov, 6 2012 @ 11:57 AM

..........................................~Is This It?~............................................

The explosions were deafening and as Victor Kershner gently laid Boy In A Dress
next to the dead body of the young female scientist on the bed, he glanced up
towards the lead-lined windows of his private chapel.

Outside, the Unholy and the remaining guards were stripped of their flesh as The Starwolf's
ionized ballistics did their work. The heat was a foretaste of the Hell that awaited them and
during the exploding molten-rock, a small craft could be seen dodging the flying lumps
of deadly boulders.

The Bell flew like a small insect avoiding a swatting newspaper and inside, Bernard
watched the fiery scene around him. "Oh, Valve help me" he whispered to himself.

Yet it was Tumbler III that reached out and grabbed the escape-pod with the little
Maintenance Droid trembling inside. Cecilia snatched The Bell and held it close to
her hull "You're safe now my chickadee" she cooed and set-off towards a safer area,
the place where Akron was parked.

"It seems your usual path of destruction has blossomed again" the big man whispered
and stroked the Man/Girl's lank hair. Flames licked at Kershner's abode and without a
thought for his employees, Victor hummed softly as -with a flick of a switch, the ornate
instrument with the high pipes spilt open and the Streamer was revealed.
There, floating in an anti-grav beam, was The Shadow Diamond.

The small eyes in the bald head became flinty as Victor approached the machine, the
contraption clicked and chittered in an unknown language. Kershner breathed in deeply
and pondered his future-immortality.

Somewhere -not too far way in another reality, The Splitter looked up with a startled

Somewhere -nearer, but in this reality, Sslar and his fellow-wolves went about ridding
Bisley Deeps of the Undead.
It was NOT very nice to watch.

"This chunk of rock is why your dear-departed 'Father' came to a bitter-end..." the Crime
Boss hissed "... he could have been my right-hand man, my trusted-one, but he chose a
road that... that conflicted with mine" Victor's massive forefinger tracked the solomn
words of the supposed-Cuspar True as he followed the ritual.

The Xang Cat leapt the runnels of lava without taking his eyes of the shadowed mansion as
the Fourways Wolves continued their ravaging to her left. Sslar knew that the concerns of
the Vithians resided in that lavish home, she also knew that Nenothtu's future safety
dwelled there too.

"The humanoid is very close to activating The Rootak Lapis..." Verr Temp whispered and
looked across the hologram of The Yydryl "... our time is almost at an end" The surrounding
Vithians looked on without any expressions on their hood-hidden faces.

The Council had met at the behest of Verr Temp and Chairman Toyme, news had reached
them that fabled stone had been located and it's power was being tapped.
All the work that Tibbs had done, all the tribulations the crew of the ghostly-ship that
hovered before them -would be in vain and the chance of peace across the universe would
be lost.

Everyone waited for the end.
edit on 6-11-2012 by A boy in a dress because: Left Lantern in Edit Room!

posted on Nov, 8 2012 @ 05:43 AM

* ~ * Found * ~ *

Moriah fought the fear, the deep throbbing at her temples and oily rolling in her gut. The after effects of teleportation made her queasy, the mist terrified her chilling her to the bone and they‘d only just landed. Or arrived. Or whatever it was called when teleporting from there to here by a power she couldn’t even imagine. But the girl had left all her doubts of the teletab’s effectiveness back on the Yydryl where it was painfully evident she was not. Her only lingering doubt was to the efficiency of the little tab because Moriah had done just as Newman told her! She’d taken the apron, fished the teletab out of the utility pocket and before giving Newman a chance to apologize for kissing her? Moriah'd wished for her sister with all her might crushing the tab in her palm. Yes, she’d done her part. But the teletab hadn‘t. Her sister was still nowhere in sight.

Dragging at another clump of bracken to the side of the trail Moriah’s tucked it best she could around Silo wondering for as many times as not if she’d made a mistake after all. She hadn’t really wanted to leave Newman had she? He’d pretty much forced her to go hadn‘t he? So, maybe she hadn’t wished for Jeni with all her might wanting to stay with Newman and only a part of her wanting to go to her sister. Facts were if she’d found the tab on her own she wouldn’t have used it, right? Moriah pulled in her breath quickly through her nose figuring that would explain why she and Silo were caught someplace in-between.

Moriah jumped when Silo moaned from under her meager blanket of brush her fear doubling. She’d failed Silo too. The dying life form was her responsibility now and she was going to freeze stiff if Moriah didn’t find a place to get her warm. But to do that she’d have to hide Silo from the elements and whatever else was lurking in the mist and go on alone. Light as Silo was if Moriah tried to carry her in her present condition the jostling would do her in quicker than the cold. She wished again for Jeni a sharp stab of longing for her sister so acute it cut to the quick. Moriah doubled over sick with the grief and the terribleness of it all.

‘Are you alright lass?’ Quiet called from atop the gelding stepping off the trail parting the mist. He’d seen her vomit but had nothing to offer her to clear her mouth. Argus had whiskey skin was tied to his stallion.

Moriah all but fainted dead away as the apparition rode clear of the swirling white stopping so close she felt the welcome warmth of the geldings breath on her shirt front. Tall even in the saddle the man’s blue-grey eyes twinkled through the haze a lop of dirty blond hair falling over his brow when he smiled down at her. The corner’s of his eyes crinkled too. Just like Newman‘s. The horse, the color of fog nod it’s huge head up and down as if in greeting, the man bent over crooning a ‘thank you’ to the beast patting it gently on the neck.

edit on 8-11-2012 by silo13 because: split

posted on Nov, 8 2012 @ 06:05 AM

* ~ * Found II * ~ *

No, the man and beast (who wouldn’t stop snuffling at her pockets) were no apparition but as real as anything else in the godforsaken place she’d ’landed.’ Moriah stood straighter squaring her shoulders throwing out her chest. She’d force this man to help her - even if she had to cling to the horses tail he’d not go leaving her alone.

‘I’m fine Sir. Thank you. Really.’ Moriah smiled while nonchalantly brushing the back of her hand across her soiled mouth. ‘Nice day we’re having here isn‘t it?‘ Moriah blinked when the man didn’t seem to understand her. ‘But, well, you see,‘ she rushed on, ‘You see I’m a little...lost is all.‘ Her words sounded squeaky she knew - but the stranger had all but gone dumb so she kept babbling on.

’I was, I mean we were going to sister’s friend here...well...she got hurt and now she’s dying and I’m not sure where to go and...’ Moriah‘s eyes began to flood her voice raised almost to shouting with the onset of hysteria. ‘and I’m not sure what to do because it’s so cold and we’ve no blanket and no fire and now I’m...we’ I said we’re lost’re not being any help at all now are you!’ She exploded. Having spent all the rambling bravado she could manage her hands flew to her face and Moriah burst into tears.

This was just too much. She’d been hiding from Security Droids for days running scared, running empty. Then Newman had kissed her and told her go. Then she ended up somewhere that was decidedly not with Jeni. Now they were freezing and Silo was dying and who knew what was happening to Newman back aboard the Yydryl wearing that wretched collar and just when she needed help most who comes to her rescue but a stupid man with a stupid horse who were doing nothing but sitting there looking...stupid!

Moriah’s frustration and grief cut clear through her heart and straight through to Quiet’s. Slipping down from the gelding he pulled the sobbing girl into his arms wrapping his wolf fur around them both holding on tight. Crooning into her silver tipped hair Quiet waited until just after her tears and shivering stopped before gently setting her away.

‘Your a strong lass.’ He gave her a small shake, ‘As strong a bonny lass as I ever seen,‘ pride made his eyes sparkle, ‘but we all have our limits girl. Now just talk a wee bit slower telling me where this friend a yers is that’s set on a dyin. My poor odd brain is cramping a bit with...the cold.‘ Quiet added instead of telling it straight. He could have understood his gelding better if the horse had chosen to start talking.

So that was it, Moriah hiccoughed and shook her head. The great lummox didn’t understand her accent. As if he didn‘t have one she snorted. For heaven’s sake the man sounded like he was talking around a mouthful of haggis. Moriah wiped her tears regaining some of her natural composure and taking Quiet by the hand tugged the man to the mound of scraggy brush set by the trail. Moving some of the grasses and bracken aside Quiet swallowed a vile oath that was quickly replaced by bitter bile. What lay hidden in a shallow hollow of earth could hardly be called human.

Appalled Quiet hunched down on his knees examining the scrap of broken skin and bone. Damn if he hadn’t tended warriors cleared from battle who set better off than the girl. ‘An who by any other name than the bloody devil did this to the lass?’ Quiet hissed his ire rising. All the blood! It caked her hair stiff and dull above a face do damaged and distorted with bruises and swelling it made her look grotesque. A hand thrice it’s normal size the joints so fat they looked about to burst through the purple skin hanging from a boned shoulder bent at an odd angle obviously out of joint the bone below shattered and sprouting through her skin. A crushed ribcage rising and falling at odds with it’s twin side. An below! Quiet swallowed around rise in his gorge. Below her thigh lay sliced open from groin to knee matted with grime and gore some strange torn fibers of cloth the only thing holding flesh to bone.

Horrified Quiet repeated his question. What had happened to her?

‘It doesn‘t matter now.‘ Moriah swallowed a lump in her throat. The details made no difference.

’Yer right lass it does’na. If we don’t get her some help and soon she’ll be out of her misery.’ He mourned mixing fact with tainted hope. Bending to wrap the thing in his cloak Quiet brushed his cheek against his shoulder hiding the evidence of his own emotion.

Hearing a commotion Moriah spun on her heal brandishing a stick ready to protect the man and Silo from whatever approached them from behind but nothing could have prepared her for what loomed from the mist. A mammoth red bearded giant sprouting an extra head stepped towards them from the shadows and when Moriah recognized Jeni tucked against the things massive furry chest and Adam’s neck caught in it’s ham hock grasp? Her eyes rolled right up and got lost in the top of her head. Moriah dropped her stick her whole body stiffening with a jolt before melting in on itself. Quiet caught her just before she hit the ground.

‘Another wee woodpecker I see.’ Argus snorted rolled his eyes then yelped in pain. The boy was using his braided beard as a rope ladder to climb down to the ground.

‘Oh Quiet! You found some people just like we did!’ Boy ran to Quiet’s side giggling when the man ruffled his hair like greeting a lost cub come home. ’Yes lad I did. And all thanks to you and the gelding here.‘ Quiet’s eyes shown down on the lad relieved to see him.

‘What you got there?’ The boy cocked his head taking stock of the thing caught against Quiet’s chest, a strange a creature as he’d ever encountered. Stepping closer he plucked at Moriah’s uniform boots and pants. Reaching her head he rubbed at a lock of her hair his eyes popping with disbelief. ’Why, it’s not a lad it’s a girl! And she’s soft as a wee chick.’ Boy smiled his eyes as round and glowing as fresh laid eggs. Quiet felt an unfamiliar wrench in his chest watching the lad lose heart body and soul to the white haired lass laying faint in his arms.

edit on 8-11-2012 by silo13 because: counter

posted on Nov, 8 2012 @ 08:38 AM

.....An Unexpected Snap Decision...

"There! I see Ceci-- Tibbs!!" Mucklebones yipped, surprising the others who all jumped a bit in their seats (except for Gert, who was still hypnotized by Alaag).

"What!" squawked Ben. "You see-- Where?!"

Mucklebones' mouth gaped open then as she focused on the monocle. "Oi, Tibbs!" she gasped, "What the--?? Gha!" Exasperated and feeling helpless, she ripped the thing from her head. "They got trouble," she said firmly. "Big, ugly trouble, an' plenty of it."

"Where is Cecilia?!" asked Ben urgently.

"Who is Cecilia?" interjected Alaag.

"The shuttle," said Wild, "the one the old man stole! It's intercepted the Diamond!"

Alaag leaned over the bizarre control panel of the huge airship and started hitting toggle switches. "What are the coordinates, girl?" he demanded.

Wild turned and raised her eyebrows at Mucklebones, who, flustered, glanced at the screen of the monocle now laying in her lap. "Five-hundred-sixty-three-dot-two X, by six-hundred-sixty-si..." Her voice tapered off with a dismal, "Oh Jenovah. They're right at the gates of--"

Alaag interrupted her, "Got it!" he said, and the airship in a quite unseemly manner suddenly G-forced them into a maneuver that would make a Roller Pigeon feel like a clumsy amateur.

Within moments they were in sight of the coordinates, Wild peering out the windscreen for the Cecilia. When she saw the Starwolf belly up and beams coming from it, she yelped. "Al, can you raise the shuttle's frequency?"

"You think he'd answer me, ya daft genius?" he barked at her. "We have to send her to ground."

"And ye'll do it now, you!" said Mucklebones, who was now standing at the hatchway looking around for a parachute pack. "And this boat, too, or Ah jump. Me little man's down there bein' roughed up, and Ah ain't waitin' one more snap ta go to 'im, dead or livin'!" Her voice became shrill.

Alaag seemed not to be much concerned about this, as he continued toggling switches and touching bare-ends of wires together. Ben vaguely wondered why the ship had no wheel, but seeing as the pilot was obviously able to maneuver the thing regardless, he set his mind on the various immediate matters at hand. Mucklebones had, in fact, found a crate full of parachute packs under their stash of gas masks, and tossed one of each out to the others. "Put 'em on, y'all, there's no time!"

"What's our altitude?" asked Ben as he strapped his on, wondering if he had time for one last cigar before he died in this inane attempt to free-fall and then sky-dive.

Seeing as it was the last item on his "bucket list" -- having been inspired by watching a memory disk of the heart-stopping antics of one Felix Baumgartner who, some thousands of years earlier, had managed to put his mind into robotic mode and followed the play by play instructions of the man on the ground at Mission Control, who had to remind the terrified daredevil lunatic to breathe as he'd stepped out onto a platform and dropped from a height of twenty-three earth miles -- Ben figured it would, in fact, be his last act of sheer will, and that furthermore they would die trying.

He wished he'd had time to manage some of the "easier" items on the list, like, for example, taking a bubble bath while sipping wine in a candlelit spa room. "Alaag, what is our altitude?!" he repeated, buckling on Brittle's pack, then moving over to Gert.

"Twenty three miles," said Alaag. "It will take me another fifteen minutes to get this thing landed, then we'll all be to ground."

"Too long," said Ben. He dragged Gert up from her seat, not bothering to make her pay attention as he strapped her pack on and entwined the chute cord through her fingers. He hoped she'd at least have the wherewithall to pull it when she saw the others do the same on their way down. He stood her at the hatch behind Mucklebones, who had opened it now. Ben took Brittle by the shoulder. "Avoid somersaults, 'n' hold yer breath. Count fifty Mississippis and then pull the cord right after ye hear the boom."

"What's a Mississippi?" asked Brittle, bewildered but compliant.

Ben huffed out an exasperated sigh, "It's a place, a state that ha----Never mind, I'll tell ya later....! Just count one-Brittle-Brittle, two-Brittle-Brittle. To fifty. It's just a mumblin' to space yer cipherin'. Now go!" and, checking the gasmask's strap, he pushed the young man Brittle out of the airship. "After you, ladies," he said. "I'll bring up the rear."

Mucklebones didn't even look back, but sailed with arms open wide out of the hatch, her dress billowing behind her and the poncho flapping desperately to get out from where it was stuck in the chute pack. Gert followed her like a shock-treated semi-catatonic devoid of thought, and then Ben jumped.

Wild, watching all this, could hardly contain herself. "I'm going with them," she said, and before the hatch door swung shut she, too, was in free fall. Alaag took a deep breath. "Just find that rock," he said to himself. "And Dorothy."

edit on 8-11-2012 by wildtimes because: left gas-masks on the ship...

edit on 8-11-2012 by wildtimes because: (no reason given)

posted on Nov, 8 2012 @ 12:53 PM

..................~Wait A Minute, But I've Just Bought The Popcorn!~...................

Gilland look back at the remains of the rig, fire raged about it's frame from the
invading ship that had appeared from nowhere and now he and Billy Kramer were
stuck in the dark without any way out.
Damn that freakin' Craddock -the grizzled man thought.

Bisley Deeps was infested with burning Euzkalians shambling about looking for a
place to die and the vast cavern now looked like the bowels of Hades, Gilland sighed
and scrambled towards the metallic giant.

The Tumbler with the huge arms hunkered down and after Cecilia had made sure Bernard V
was safely inside herself, she held The Bell escape-pod high and waited for Akron's return.
The two Drill-Riggers had no doubt that this walking-tin can was their only way out and
ignoring the inferno behind them, they waved at the brightly-lit Tumbler.

"Need a lift, gents?" Cecilia said easily and hunkered closer to the fleeing men, Kramer
stuck up a thumb and the older-Gilland smiled at the craft with big window.
"You're sight for sore-eyes, Missy" he panted and climbed down from the rocks.

"Take me closer to that buildin'..."Nenothtu said hunched over the Starwolf's console,
the big building with the fancy stonework called to him for some reason. "...'ah've a
feeling the answer is in there" and gave Margot a rare-smile, the result drew a seductive
-one from her. "You better be careful" she whispered and noticed Tibbs step-up beside
her man.

"I believe BIAD is in there... along with the answer to all of this" the Vithian said softly
and it was only by blind-luck... (was it? was it really?)... that Margot glanced away from
the instrument panel and saw Tibbs' flinty eyes.
'There's more to this' she thought to herself and brought The Starwolf closer to Kershner's

Victor licked his lips and placed a hand on the Man/Girl's chest, he'd been wanting to do this
for centuries. "To take your heart, to pluck that organ from the famous Boy In A Dress and
to devour it... would I truly be guarranteed immortality?" the sweating-man hissed through
clentched teeth. BIAD slowly turned his eyeless-face away from the lifeless Dorothy
Goodyear and towards the man he he had scoured the universe for, those red-lips revealed
teeth that the Fourways wolves would have been proud of.

"You took my heart once, but you failed to take may rage..." the hermaphrodite said softly
and grabbed the fat wrist of the murderer of the girl beside him.
"...Allow me" BIAD said easily and set upon the killer of his Creator.

The machine known as The Streamer clicked and whirred as the red-dressed oddity took
Victor's debts for the loss of his Father, The Shadow Diamond thrummed as it hovered in
the anti-gravity field and it's surface hissed and bubbled with the flecks of blood from
Victor's useless flailing. It wasn't nice and to Victor's credit, he only screamed twice.

Death bowed as Pandora stepped into the small Chapel, the flames at the coloured-glass
window brought a more-menacing presence to The Grim Reaper as he watched the lovely
Keeper of The Box move to where BIAD kneeled over a dying body.

"You disgust me..." the raven-haired beauty spat "...and now it's time to put things right"
Pandora grabbed a handful of BIAD's writhing hair and grinned into the shocked face.

(Continued Below)

posted on Nov, 8 2012 @ 12:59 PM
(From Above)

James Craddock vomited the last of his late-supper and shivered in the dark, most of his
expensive suit was burnt away and most of the left-side of his face too, but he was alive.
The terrible zombies were gone and now, only the dying flames flickered in the alleyways
of Bisley Deeps. Craddock counted himself lucky and with some of that luck left, he was
going to visit that fat bastard who had brought him to this hell, Kershner.
Staggering to his feet, James stumbled towards the crime boss' mansion and in grimacing
at the state of his shoes, he promised himself that he'd have that cursed stone.
That was when Sslar and the wolves stepped out of the shadows.

"Oh it's luck..." whispered Death in another place "...but all bad"

BIAD felt his head meet the wainscott along the Chapel walls and sighed at not having his
brother's ability to fade through the wooden panelling. It hurt.

"Do you have any idea what you have done?" Pandora raged and kicked at the high-heeled
foot of the father of her child. BIAD smiled weakly and noticed Death fading from view "I
have something to attend to" he said with his hood facing the dead Victor Kershner.
"You humilliated me, you took advantage of me and now, you are..." the vixen began
and that's when The Shadow Diamond came to life.

It was what the Vithians feared the most, The Diamond Dark that was lost during the
birth of the universe, the stone that should have resided in the craggy-plinth where all
timelines meet, the one thing that The Splitter held dear -began to 'refold' this reality.
But as in true tradition, like something from one of those twentieth-century movies,
in walked Neno... smoking one of those cigars.

"Chairman Toymes.... Chairman Toymes" shouted Verr Temp and banged on the door
with more vigour, most of the Council had resigned themselves to their fate and returned
to their homes, but Temp and Mr. Jordan had remained at the Calling Hall.

Toymes checked to see that his wife and children were still asleep in his bed and quietly
made his way down stairs, the universe would be gone before the sun rose and here he
was, probably dealing with a silly Council matter.

"He's there... the Neo has reached the Diamond" the muffled and tired voice of Verr Temp
proclaimed from behind the ironwood door, but the excitement showed no signs of tiring.
Chairman Toymes rubbed his eyes, released the latch and looked out at the two Vithians
in the night. "What?" he grumbled and peered at the hooded faces.

It was a chance.

posted on Nov, 9 2012 @ 01:54 AM

* ~ * Where to now? * ~ *

‘Where we going to take this ratty lot?’ Quiet asked leading his horse next to Argus who in turn led his stud.

‘I dunno brother.’ Argus replied his head about to pop with the conundrum. A boy sick for dragons, a white haired imp dressed like a lad, the girl with the violet hair looking like she’d been trampled under his stallion’s hooves not once but thrice. The little one’s sister? His own heart’s dream sprung to life and she was simply pining after another man - if you could even call him that. Argus snorted wanting to ride away from the lot of them and not look back.

‘She’s dying Argus. We can’t just leave them.‘ Quiet knew the look too well. When his brother glowered so he was about to run. Quiet couldn’t let him, not this time. ‘Listen to me brother. We could take them to...’ Quiet started but Argus cut him off.

‘I know what you’re going to say and if you speak a word of it I’ll feed you my fists one at a time boyo.’ Argus didn’t want to hear it. Wanted to deny it. But he knew without Quiet saying his brother was right. The only place left for them to go was - home.

‘Argus you’ve been headed in that vera directions since leaving the Rose.’ Quiet’s gelding nickered. ’Pa’s been gone near a handful a years and our mum right on his heels and we‘ve not been home since. It’s time Argus.’ Quiet sighed. ’Ye, it’s time. And ya can’t tell me you’ve been bearing straight that away on account a yer bad sense of direction?’ Quiet tried at teasing but it fell flat.

‘Where I’ve been goin’ is away from the Waysmen not towards ana thin’ in particular besides our bloody freedom you gape headed fool! And if you think I’m wrong I’ll be promising you right here, right now, we’re still bein followed!‘ Argus bellowed as best he could while still whispering. The last thing he wanted to do was wake the two females who’d start their caterwauling all over again. Why the lasses had to cry and go on when they were happy was something Argus hoped he’d never understand in this life or his next.

‘Then what can we do?‘ Quiet waited before asking knowing his brother had to work the problem through and was willing to give him time.

‘What we can’t do is go ta home Quiet!‘ Tha’s the last place on God’s great bloody balls we’ll be taking this group!’ Argus’s breathing came heavy. He couldn’t even say the word home. He wanted to squish something. He wanted to pummel something to a pulp. He wanted to howl.

‘But it’s the only place on God’s blessed earth we’ve left to us brother.’ Quiet replied softly waiting for a beating that didn’t come. Argus was bent on ignoring him now. Wordlessly the two continued traipsing forward higher into the hills. The ’others’ either strapped to the horses or helping the ones wrapped and tied in furs had all nodded to sleep with their newfound warmth, the sway of the animals and the slug a whiskey Argus had forced down all their throats - including the ‘man’.
edit on 9-11-2012 by silo13 because: split

posted on Nov, 9 2012 @ 02:01 AM

* ~ * Wolf-Housing * ~ *

Blood calling to blood rose with the morning sun on the second day. Argus and Quiet felt it, stopped in their stride to stand alert and waiting. Three short yips clipped the morning’s stillness followed by a long drawn out howl. Three more voices took up the wolf song. Then three more.

‘But them are wolves!’ The boy crowed like a banty all agog having woken from aback the stallion by the howls. Moriah shook herself awake from in front of the boy her hands twined painfully in the ropes holding Silo firm to the horse.

‘Yes, they’re wolves.’ Jeni replied tightly from the gelding where she rode behind Adam keeping him from swaying out of the saddle.

‘But not just any wolves lass,’ Argus replied about burst with the pride of it.

’Those are our wolves.’ Quiet finished.

‘And damn them straight to hell and back if they’re not.’ Argus howled his excitement a mix of anger and pleasure. Tugging on his stallion Argus stepped up his pace the horse almost breaking into a trot.

‘Why’s he mad Quiet?’ The boy was too curious top be put off by Argus’s outbursts.

‘Because he’s home lad. Like it or not he’s home.’ Quiet smiled reaching up to pat the boys shoulder.

‘You live with wolves then?’ His wonder dampened by the change in Quiet’s voice when he whispered ’home’. The boy had grown used to the men belonging to him. He didn’t want to share.

‘Yes lad, we live with...wolves.’ Quiet smiled but not at the boy, he smiled at something the boy couldn’t see.

The morning stilled. No one dared move or breath. While mist ran from the morning light seeping beneath brush and tree the travelers waited. The sun rose a little higher painting the glen in a peach warm glow of welcome.

Slowing Argus handed his reigns to Quiet, stepped away from the stud and away from the group. Stopping in the middle of a small clearing Argus stood tall, eyes straight ahead, ready. When the boy opened his mouth to ask more questions Quiet silenced him with a finger to his lips pointing to Argus motioning the boy to watch.

Then they attacked.

A tall lanky wolf black as shadows burst from the trees leaping for Argus’s throat nearly toppling the giant to the ground. Another shorter fatter wolf followed close behind throwing itself against the warriors knees accomplishing what the leaner wolf had not. Argus hit the ground hard. A smaller cub as sunlit and silver as the first wolf was dark and gloom threw himself into the fray squealing in delight. The others followed - not more than a dozen but it was enough to cover Argus from sight.

The boy devoured the scene with mouth wide open half in fear half delight when as suddenly as they’d attacked the pack of snarling snapping wolves dropped their cloaks turning into people right before his eyes. Men and women of all sizes thrust off their skins embracing Argus first then Quiet. Before he could dismount the little silver cub a boy his own size took the reigns of Quiet’s gelding. Female ’wolves’ began tending to Silo and Adam before they were even removed from horseback.

‘Wait.‘ Quiet stepped from the reunion holding up his arms to take the boy from the saddle before his horse was led too far away. ‘Close yer trap now and come meet yer new family’ Quiet set him on the ground pulling him towards the others.

‘My’ Boy choked and dug his bare heals into the soft turf jolting Quiet to a stop.

‘Of course little bother.’ The big man snagged the lad’s trembling chin between a forefinger and thumb turning up his face forcing him to look in his eyes. The morning sun rising over the crest created a halo of Quiet’s golden hair that glowed even brighter when he spoke.

‘Hear me now lad ,‘ Quiet’s voice rounded over the hills sending the last of the mist away faster than had the sun. ‘You‘ve proven yerself a man and of yer own earning you deserve a man’s name. I call you Flint.’ Quiet waited until the echo cleared the fens. ‘Flint of the Newscots you be a more. ’ Quiet emphasized ’no more’. ’You be one of us now - as I’m saying you are. Don’t ever be forgetting it or be making me regret this day.’ Blue gray eyes bore into brown until the pledge took root deep in the boy’s own fertile soul.

Opening his arms Quiet whispered a blessing to the new day, to his new brother then throwing back his head howled low and long mournful and exalted. Flint rose to the sound chin up adding his pure sweet call crackling like a cubs.

Catching Argus’s eye over the boy’s head Quiet went silent and held his breath. Argus looked from man to boy, rolled his eyes and nod his head once in acceptance. His throat tight Quiet led Flint forward to introduce him to the clan. Or what was left of them.

posted on Nov, 14 2012 @ 03:56 AM

* ~ * Rain * ~ *

The rain hadn’t quit it’s dripping nor the wind it’s howling for three days and not in one of those miserable days had either brother seen or heard from the handful of lostinlings they’d brought to the clan. Not first hand. The grovel of huts they called home was rife with stories, the Tenders bringing news of their progress, or not in the case of Silo to the communal hut but neither Quiet, Argus or Flint had seen their ratty band of foundlings for themselves. That Argus was weathering the elements within clear view of the hut Jeni occupied with her sister Moriah wasn’t a coincidence.

‘Enjoying a fine raw evening brother?’ Quiet slopped over the mud hollows to join his Argus in the rain.

‘Truth or lie?’ Argus’s glassy eyes proved the smitten warrior was as wet on the inside with whiskey as he was wet on the outside with rain.

‘Oh, I’d think this night calls for a lie wouldn’t you? It’s been a long time since I’ve heard you spin a story.’ Wrapping another wolf hide around his shoulders tossing an extra to Argus Quiet shared the oak with his brother leaning back against the rough bark their noses tucked out of the wind.

‘A lie then?’ Argus’s eyebrows rose crooked, ’It has been a dogs long age since ya wanted ta play at this.’ Argus chuckled remembering their boyhood game.

‘Well I chose one now and gladly.‘ Quiet sighed, ‘I’d puke pine knots if I had to hear spill from yer own lips the truth every woman and child’s whispering behind closed doors.’

‘And what might that be?‘ Knowing Argus scowled unrepentant.

‘That my own brother’s standing out here a molding in the rain watchin’ for a wee glimpse of the lass with wild red hair - who doesn’t even know he’s alive.’ Quiet forced a chuckle. He hated seeing Argus so gilly-stuck with wanting knowing no good would come of it. The red haired girl had eyes for no one but the strange piece of human baggage she’d been found with.

‘Well brother, all those tongues you hear a waggin’ their tails are wrong.’ Argus swore and stood a little taller, ’I’m out here looking for...banshees.’ He mangled. Quiet breathed a sigh of relief. It wasn’t often Argus was a happy drunk.

‘So the lies a startin’ now is it?’ Quiet laughed and stuck out his hand. The wet slap of a half drunk whiskey skin stung his palm. Quiet drank deep. The whiskey raw and smoky burned it’s way straight to his toes leaving behind a trail of fire, a welcome thing in the cold wet night.

‘Alright then go to it. I’m ready for the listening.’ Smacking his lips Quiet handed the skin back pulling the wolf fur closer down over his brow. ‘But you’d better be careful brother oh mine. This very tree is growing ears.’

‘Oh, you don’t say?’ Argus chuckled draining the wineskin his eyes twinkling mischief.

Quiet tipped his head to the side indicating a shivering bunch of underbrush. He’d been hearing Flint trying to creep up on them with sticks a snapping and mud a slopping for long minutes now. He reminded himself to start the boys woodcraft training as soon as the rain let up, stealthy the lad was not.

‘Well,‘ Argus voice droaled like the dead, ‘be glad then it’s only a tree a listening. Aye be glad. For if it were, oh let’s say a young boy all hunched up in the dark a hiddin‘ from his own brothers? Well he’d be a hearin’ a tale so powerful horrible his wee tally whacker’d climb right up his own arse with fear leaving the poor boyo squealing like a girl for a week ‘til it let back down.’ Argus’s voice rose with the threat til he was all but hollering right into the trembling bush.

Quiet rolled his eyes and snorted. Leave it up to his brother to wax poetic with the lad listening.

‘Then for the sake of the shrubbery and it’s...ears...we should head for home and our own fireside ta hear about yer banshees I’d say.’ Quiet slung his arm around his brother’s huge shoulders ready to lead him inside.

‘You think the lad remembered to tend up the fire?’ Argus wondered aloud mocking up his willingness to be led docile as a lamb.

‘If our hearth isn’t a blazing it’ll be time to teach him the ways of a mighty thrashing wouldn’t you say?’ Quiet chucked when a particularly filthy oath issued from the ‘bush’.

‘A stout arms length o’ good Scot’s thistles should teach the lad ta do his chores I‘d be thinking.’ Argus answered nearly biting his own tongue in two when the shrubbery fare exploded the sound of bare feet slapping up the trail slick and runny.

Heading home the brother’s shared laughter warmed them deeper than any wolf fur over their shoulders or whiskey in their gut neither feeling the rain pouring ever harder than before.

edit on 14-11-2012 by silo13 because: counter

posted on Nov, 14 2012 @ 05:37 PM

The Heavy Marauder class cruiser traveled at faster than light
speed towards the last known position of the Penelope...

"Captain we are picking up a Lidar contact bearing 316.22 at .21 parsec"

Slayer spun around in his chair.

"Bring defensive shields online and go to station alert"

Horne heard the call over the comm. Dropping his fork full of mashed potatoes and gravy he stood and rushed down the corridor from the galley towards his station on the B deck [Main armaments]

Slayer had waited for this moment a long time. After finding his son alive and well he and his small crew had found the Heavy cruiser Spartacus abandoned and adrift with numerous hull beaches and other required various repairs. It had taken them a fair amount of time and resources to get her ship shape and back in top form. They had practically dismantled the Matilda for needed parts and material.

They lucked out when they came across a large mothballed fleet of retired war vessels where they obtaining the bulk of their heavy plate shielding.

Slayer stood and circled around back of his chair grabbing the headrest with both hands and stretched his back as he watched Callen input flight adjustments. Looking over at his console screen he saw the Horne had brought the weapons up and were now on stand bye.

"Drop her to sub light as close as you can Callan, If she has been commandeered I want to surprise whoever or whatever has taken her"

He stood, crossed his arms over his chest and thumbed his chin...

edit on 14-11-2012 by SLAYER69 because: (no reason given)

posted on Nov, 14 2012 @ 06:29 PM
Badger read the piece of parchment for the third time. He could see the brown ink clearly with his candle but still didn't understand the message.
“Out of time but not in this place, come tomorrow.
Last rites.
Badger checked the time and crossed the stone floor of his small kitchen. He pulled a small paper wrapped package from the cooling cupboard and poured hot coffee from a steaming pot on the top of the wood stove into a battered thermos. He placed these items next to a small stack of clothing and a battered bag and went to the front room.

He pulled on a thin pair of black mesh gloves and slid back the edge of the radiation shutters to the only window he had. The black glass was nearly opaque but a bright red ring was visible. Badger watched through the treated glass as the coronal edge of the dark star set in the east. He could still feel the pulsing heat of invisible light through the layered window. Even in the darkness he knew that the radiant energy outside was still enough to cook him in his own skin.

He had gotten used to long nights of uninterrupted sleep in the lumpy old bed that occupied the majority of his small semi-subterranean rental home. With nights that cooked anyone who ventured out, he rarely had uninvited guests. He was almost sad to leave the miserable place. He had been searching town to town on this moon for nearly half of a solar year, and it still seemed odd that the dark nights were lethally hot and the blindingly bright days were intolerably cold.

The designation of the place was GCVS 039875/2871-T73. The local name was simply, Asylum. Asylum was the73rd moon in the farthest orbit of an artificially ignited gas giant called Tartarus. Tartarus orbited a binary pair of stars. Both revolved about each other in close proximity.

Though it was an energetic pairing it was entirely dark. The only way to see the two stars in the night sky was to watch for the coronal discharge that both stars exhibited. The visible light that Asylum saw was a brilliant but cold blue blaze from the burning Tartarus. Normally a spreadsheet was needed to keep up with the schedule of light to dark but it was the third triquinox of the year and the days and nights were each nearly 19 hours long. Both were lethal for the improperly equipped or uninitiated.

Most inhabitants preferred the shorter days and nights of the varied seasons but this was an important time. This was the traveling season. The window for off world travel was open for a short time and would soon close unless you had access to a Leviathan class ship or larger. Anything smaller simply couldn’t handle the gravity stresses.

Badger waited until the UV indicator next to the door slid from red to yellow. He quickly dressed and packed his small pack. He wouldn’t be returning this way. By the time he stepped from the narrow doorway the heat was all but gone. A wind picked up and soon brought driving rain, sleet, snow and a slight blue tinge to what had been utter darkness.

Badger hunched against freezing wind and stinging ice. He stayed close to the lee walls of the narrow warren of alleyways. A thin sheet of ice broke with each step and well insulated boots sunk ankle deep into the near boiling muck below. Behind him the footprints oozed and settled a few seconds before refreezing. Hard bits of frozen grit skittered across fractals of oily brown ice that stretched the length and width of each boot print locking the patterns into place.

Badger was wrapped warmly in a large nondescript cloak of non-color patterning. It was an offworld weave that seemed to fit in on any planet he visited. He wore a thick headscarf of local ruminant wool and his hands were wrapped in the same warm fabric. His eyes were covered in clear flexglass. Moisture that hit the glass immediately froze and sloughed off of the zero friction molecular coating. Infrared compensators allowed a near daylight view of the alleyway as Badger made his way through the small settlement.

He passed a wide alley that housed a small bakery. The flicker of candles and oven light shone through the narrow gaps in just unshuttered windows as the occupants working in the pre dawn began again their never ending task of feeding the town. Servo’s whined as the heavy insulated exterior door on the bakery slid aside to reveal a smaller inner door. A dog barked behind the thinner door and it slowly opened. Badger slid into a small recess near the bakery and held still. Bright light filled the windy alleyway. A heavy set matron, her face red from the ovens and fingers suddenly blue from the cold peered into the darkness. She glanced both ways and then closed her eyes as she listened over the keening of the wind. She spit across the back of her hand to ward off evil and pulled the door shut. Badger heard the dog continue barking until it yelped loudly and was silent. He slid from his alcove and continued on.

He made his way to the north end of town.

edit on 14-11-2012 by badgerprints because: (no reason given)

posted on Nov, 15 2012 @ 08:51 AM


Neno squinted to allow his eyes to adjust; BIAD looked round from Kershner's corpse; Craddock limped closer. A small party of guests arrived at the mansion, quite unexpectedly, and certainly uninvited.

Wild's heart was pounding so hard her teeth hurt; this was the moment, then. This was the end, and all the means to get here had been spent. 'Dorothy, her mind hissed. Dorothy Goodyear.

"Dorothy," muttered Alaag, "it really was a good year. I'll get you away from that wretched stone and to safety if it's the last thing I do." And with that he flung a landscaping brick through the plate glass door that led in from the garden.

Pandora was the only one who heard the window break in a distant room. The sneer on her face vanished. She had a bad, bad feeling about this. As she focused on the sound of breaking glass and tried to determine from which direction it had come, she neglected to see that a gas-masked face was now peering out from the chimney into the firebox.

What Mucklebones saw made her heart race. She reached up to grab the monocle out of her poncho, but her fingers were shaking, and it slipped, landing in the still glowing coals of Kershner's dying fire. "Blast," she muttered from behind her gasmask, and reached for it, but as soon as her fingers got near, she was suddenly wrenched back up the chimney. Gasping, her goggles smeared with soot, her fingertips still smoking from the heat, Tibbs flung himself at her, wrapping his arms and a stout tow-rope around her middle, together they were lifted off of the roof and into the hatch of the Starwolf's fuselage.

Wild had entered the house via the cellar, and was now pushing open the door into the kitchens. Brittle and Gert, behind her, looked at each other inquisitively, not sure whether they preferred to stay within sight of her, or to sit out the ruckus in the subterranean gloom of the passage.

Ben had lit on the path which Craddock was taking, and just as the burned and broken man stepped into the gaslit courtyard, he hurled himself out from the shadows behind the shrubbery and clamped a hand over James' mouth. "I'd stay outta there, son, if'n ye know what's good for ye," he murmured. "But thanks fer pointin' out the way."

He applied pressure to that pressure point that makes men faint almost immediately, and then strode into the house, dropping his now-unconscious "guide" unceremoniously onto the gravel of the walkway. He smelled cigar smoke, and almost reflexively, lit one for himself. As he shook out the match he thought he glimpsed a shadowy movement to his right. He glanced over and saw that it was Alaag.

"Where're the others?" asked Alaag.

"Not here, at the moment," said Ben. "You have some truck with these folks, I gather, what with them havin' that stone and all, and I ain't sure what yer reasons are, but I know when a young man's heart's been torn up, and yers as been. Torn up, that is."

"Yes," said Alaag, "and I mean to find her. If she's not with that poser Craddock."

"Hmmm," muttered Ben. "Handsome guy? Nicely built, well dressed? Well, Ah'm just guessing from what I saw, he'd been roughed up a bit, but he seemed a right poser to me. 'Zat him?"

Alaag ripped off his mask and said, with hatred in his eyes, "Yes."

"Ah," said Ben, and spit out a bit of tobacco. "Yeah, he'd be yer main competition, I'm thinkin'," he said. "Seein' as looks often fool a woman into belieivin'. He ain't with 'her, though."

To Alaag's expectant raised brow he said, "Nah, he's a-layin' out there in the dark. Ain't seen no lass, though."

At that moment Alaag pushed open the door of the chapel. If his heart had not been in charge, he'd have missed seeing the lovely form of Dorothy on the bed, as graceful in death as ever she had been in life. He didn't notice Neno, or anyone else. He raced to the slender corpse and grasped her to himself and wailed.

Ben shook his head and strode up to Neno's side. "Young'uns, their hearts just get in the way, eh, old friend? So, what we got here?"

Neno looked at him, and at the Shadow Diamond, and at Alaag. "Th' others? They're with ye?"

Ben grunted in an affirmative tone. "So, what we got? Zombies?"

"All dead," said Neno. "The Diamond is the only thing left worth pursuin' on this damned rock."

Outside and above this tense, bittersweet, happy, mournful, angry reunion scene (the reader will remember, there are several reunions going on), Cecilia hovered. In her cockpit sat Redbeard, drooling and thumping his armstump on the console in frustration. It landed accidentally on a switch that had the ability to dissemble matter into atoms and transmit them to other locales, and he vanished. Just as he did so, an enormous Uktena approached it, its wings creating turbulence. It was about to subdue the yellow limbed orb when it suddenly burst into a million bits of disconnected Uktena.

"Nice shot," said Tibbs.

posted on Nov, 15 2012 @ 01:38 PM

......................~Wheels-Within-Wheels, But Onwards!~........................

Down it went, the cursed stone of Rootak Lapis, down into the fissure caused by
the Starwolf's demonstration of power. The crack in the cavern floor took the glassy
Shadow Diamond and passing through clear water held in the depths of Khalamzadar IV,
it was lost forever... again.

I suppose Bisley Deeps really did have 'deeps'
But it seems Death had deeper plans.

"Mr. Craddock..." the tall shadow whispered at the frightened man with the pencil
-moustache, Death recalled a similar-look he used as Rhett Butler in another reality.
"...It seems your time in life is over, such a shame" he said softly and turned a page of
the large book on a stone plinth -James saw the Reaper stood next to.

The burnt-faced James looked around the gloomy room, it seemed that he was still
in the vast cavern and yet, the massive doors at the far-end told him it was a room,
a room with Death waiting inside.

"Is this..." Craddock stopped his question as he watched the tall robed-figure turn to
face him, he was dead and now he was in heel -he guessed. He figured Kershner would
soon be joining him.

"There are schemes that some wished to achieve, Mr. Craddock, plans that must be
adhered to" Death said as he passed the trembling man in the ragged clothes. "I see
that the Fourways wolves and Nenothtu's 'pet' had their way with you... tut-tut" Death
whispered "so unfair" the blackness inside the hood offered with mock-pity.

Margot peered out of the cockpit window of The Starwolf and saw the movement
again, somone was out there... and there was more than one.
The figures gave no indication of attacking the craft, they just seemed to be waiting,
looking for someone.

"Neno... can you hear me?" the android said into the small microphone in her ear-set,
she had been listening to the chatter in the big mansion to her right. "There's people
out here, people who looked sorta-lost!" Margot tracked others coming from the
shadows and joining the small group ahead of her, they seemed like children in the
dim-light of the Starwolf's forward-lights.

Boy In A Dress stumbled away from the prone body of Victor Kershner, it was over
and his quest was done, his lungs struggled to take in air as he came to terms with
what he done. It was Tibbs who broke his train of tought.

"You are at the end of one road, but another trail waits for your decision... all I can
say is that somewhere in the future, you have already decided" the Vithian said
softly and looked up at Mucklebones. "We're all already in the past" Tibbs muttered
and showed a sad-smile.

BIAD nodded once and went over to where Nenothtu waited with the others, the
girl that Allag had named as 'Dorothy' lay like a sleeping princess awaiting her beau's
kiss, but this damaged Chapel was certainly no Palace bedroom.

Pandora had gone -BIAD noticed and her last words still echoed in his head 'You
took advantage of me and now...' the raven-haired goddess had never finished her
statement and for some reason the word 'mother' called from somewhere deep inside.
But that was for later, this 'now' was where he should focus on -he assured himself.

"...And you would look on this as a contract, a deal struck between two gentlemen
with honour?" Craddock said and tenderly touched the raw-flesh on the side of his face.
It didn't hurt anymore.

Death shrugged his bony shoulders and with a voice that sounded like a tomb being
raided, he answered "I can hardly be categorized as gentleman" he snickered and
closed the space between them. Low moans came from those terrible doors at the end
of the room and James imagined teeth-gnashing demons pondering how they would rend
his soul. He had brokered life-changing deals before, but Craddock knew that this one
had his soul riding on it's success. He pressed on.

"I agree to keep watch for you, to make sure I become one of their party and to be taken
in with their trust..." he said and peered into the nothingness of Death's cowl "... for this,
you will keep me from..." he looked towards the ornate doors once more and whispered
"...keep me from there?" Droplets of sweat tapped on the surface of his suit that had also
somehow repaired itself.

(Continued Below)
edit on 15-11-2012 by A boy in a dress because: Left writer's-block in Edit Room!

posted on Nov, 15 2012 @ 01:47 PM
(Continued from Above)

Death said nothing and it seemed an eternity ticked by as they faced each other, the moans
from behind the doors subsided. Then the gravelled-tones came again.

"Quite a boon, heh? To make a deal with Death. But are you man-enough to run the race
and cross the line? May it be that you need assistance?" the Reaper seemed to be thinking
aloud, but Craddock wagered that the tall scarecrow was merely maneuvering for a better
position in the negotiations.

Dorothy stepped from the surrounding darkness and took James' breath away, the girl
had followed him into hell! The slender figure moved silently towards him, but at the last
moment, altered her route and stood next to The Grim Reaper. "Hello" she said calmly and
James knew it wasn't really the young woman he had tricked on the 'Otherside'

There was something about the eyes... a cunning that brought a chill to his rejuvanated
Death chortled a sound that brought an image of digruntled toads in a hessian sack to
Craddock mind, the chill didn't go away. From the terrible shadows of his sleeve, the Reaper
produced a crumpled-bunch of withered flowers, without a word he handed them to the slim
female in the 'secretary's' glasses. "You're a darling" Pandora whispered and rewarded the
giant soul-keeper with a beguiling smile.

"We have many-miles before we sleep..." the stranger hiding inside Dorothy's body said
towards the human with the frightened-gaze "...and many folk that owe us. It seems that
we are a pair -you and I, Mr. Craddock?" Pandora cooed and touched Death's arm.
As the couple began to fade, the charming-smiling man with the Clarke Gable-moustache
said "call me James"

Cecilia saw the man stand up from where he'd been laid and unknown to the walking-talking
Tumbler, Dorothy stirred on the bed. "My God!" Alaag said and smiled at the fluttering eyes
of the young girl before him. Wilds looked on at the sight of the assumed-dead Dorothy
with eyes that would rival Ben's saucer-sized ones. Sitting up and looking around, she
croaked "What happened?"

Nenothtu, Mucklebones and Tibbs were outside in the remains of the alleyways and
smoldering bodies of zombies, the stink was horrible.

"Ah'm coming Margot, jest give me a minute" the tall Gunman muttered into the mouth
-piece the Vithian had handed him, Muckles seemed oblivious to the carnage around them.
The Starwolf hovered thirty-feet above the small crowd of moving shadows at the edge
of Bisley Deeps and Neno's hand touched the butt of his holstered pistol as his eyes
adjusted to the gloom.

"You'll not be needing that..." Tibbs whispered and eyed the tall Vandal from over his small
spectacles "...Your people await" he said cryptically.

"He's here" Neno heard someone say softly "it's really him" -said another and then the
Gunman stepped into the light provided by the Starwolf. Sslar and the three wolves sat on
their haunches a few yards away from the group of unknown-beings and from their
positions, four sets of eyes gleamed like rare jewels.

The residents of Bisley Deeps, the true folk that had kept themselves from the suicidal-
Euzkalians, the subterranean race that always knew the Neo would come - watched their
ruler survey his subjects. It was breathtaking.

The cavern was silent as the ritual took place, Nenothtu had no idea what was happening
and this brought a whiskered-smile to the small Time-Mechanic at his side.

"All Hail the Neo!" Tibbs suddenly snapped and with one voice, the small dwarf-like folk
of Bisley Deeps all answered with "THE NEO HAS COME HOME!" and pointed at their king!

The Gunman sighed to himself and muttered with dripping sarcasm "Oh great, more baggage"
and felt for another cigar.
edit on 15-11-2012 by A boy in a dress because: Left writer's-block in Edit Room!

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