Tuesday, July 19, 2016

BeWareWolf

So hi! I know I haven't posted in a while, but I am thinking of incorporating this into the Dungeons and Dragons campaign that I am in and may also be posting content relevant to that in the future. Keep being awesome folks!

Without further ado, here is Bewarewolf, or as one may call it, awful title!


Along the moor, before the sun
When nocturnal beasts will roam
The children of Pan shall hunt the one
That strays too far from home
With eyes that glitter in the dark
That thirst for blood to spill
Watch the wanderer, make their mark
And move in for the kill
And close behind, the pack shall find
Their leader by his saddened song
And crying in their bestial binds
Will hunt until the dawn
Beware, ye travelers, and listen well
For men may seem like friends
But only the wary will live to tell
How others met their ends

Saturday, February 13, 2016

 Warning to sensitive Folks: There is some language, Ye have been warned!

Bioshock Haven: Chapter 2



The first sense that flooded back into Jack as he approached a state of consciousness was smell. Unfortunately, Jack was not woken by some tasteful fragrance, like the smell of lemongrass soap and the tinge of aftershave that accentuated a clean and pleasant environment that could be commonly experienced within his bedroom, where Jack had expected to be.

Rather, a foul stench of freshly gutted fish and bloodied meat hooks filled the air, the sharp metallic smell overpowering any semblance of the sweet aroma from the Midas ballroom. This horrid reek is what brought forth his second sense; sight.

Something’s not right here, Jack’s mind urged him to look around, though his weary eyes were reluctant to open at first. Finally, he managed to coax the lids open so that he could at least catch a sliver of the scene about him. After taking in a dimly lit surrounding of a fishery freezer, his brain drew a conclusion.  Something is definitely not right here.

Jack, now startled into consciousness by his lack of familiarity with his current whereabouts, widened his eyes and drank in the room around him. He tried to stand, his sense of feeling diminished by whatever narcotic was in the ambrosia that he had so delighted in. Jack groaned, the sensation of being over-encumbered hitting him as hard as the reality of his situation.

He fell back into where he was sitting. Though he could not feel the splintered wood pressing against his back under the influence of the tranquillizer, he knew that as soon as he gained feeling, it was sure not to be an agreeable sensation. Around his wrists and the arms of the chair, thick ropes wound themselves around Jack. He tugged lightly, still weak, but to no avail did they give in.

Sluggishly, he craned his head to search for a familiar face in the depths of darkness that encased the checkered walls. Frightened and confused, Jack struggled against his constraints. Though he understood the futility of his actions, he was to stricken with panic to care. It wasn’t until his skin began to chafe around the securely fastened hemp knots that Jack ceased his efforts. With a sigh of defeat, he slumped back in his chair.

Think, Jack, think! Jack could scarcely hear his own thoughts over the thump of his racing heart. What happened? Let’s see…There was the party…Some men came in, armed…And…

Jack gasped at the sudden realization. He hadn’t a clue where his father was. He could have been captured, injured, or worse. Jack trembled, dread coursing through him at the prospect of wanton possibilities. Jack, resisting his sore throat’s flowering pain, called out to the darkness that stretched in front of him.

“Father?!” Jack cried out, anticipating foolishly some form of response. At the absence of an answer, Jack bit his chapped lip nervously. They had become blue from prolonged exposure to the cold.

Jack came to the realization of how cold he actually was. His skin was blanketed in goosebumps, his muscles inadvertently shuddering in the chill, and his mouth becoming dry at the absence of humidity. “How long have I been in here?” Jack wondered aloud.

“Long enough.”

Jack yelped. The response that formulated from the shadows was the last thing that Jack expected. From beyond an unseen corner, heavy footfalls echoed, approaching the room where Jack anxiously anticipated the arrival of the anonymous source of the voice.

A flickering light manifested from thin air, approaching closer as the footsteps got louder. Jack shook and sat up straight, paralyzed with terror. The light shone relentlessly on his face, and Jack squinted against the harsh light. The light, directed by its unseen controller, gave no hint as to the appearance of Jack’s captor. Jack, with terror holding his words hostage in his throat, piped up softly.

“W-who are you?” Jack could sense a small smile forming on the stranger’s lips in the dark.

“Oh, I’m sure you’ll know soon enough. In the meantime, I’m going need to have you comply with the boss’s orders. If you don’t…” The sound of a gun’s slide cocking back reverberated abruptly around the room. Jack’s eyes widened, tears pricking at the edges.

Jack wanted desperately to gulp down the creeping terror in his throat, but his dry mouth gave him no such satisfaction. The boy nervously trembled and squirmed in his seat. With a miniscule voice, Jack just barely conjured up the courage to speak. “And what does he want me to d-do?”

A low, rasping cackle echoed throughout the lonely chamber, masking the sound of the swinging rusted meat hooks and rushing air of the refrigeration units. Jack felt the resonant chortle pierce his soul.

“Don’t your daddy tell you anything? Well, if that’s how it is…” From the shadows, another figure made their presence known.

“Blindfold him, Matthias. We don’t want a repeat of that Murphy incident, right?” Jack shot back, the new voice filling him with an entirely different form of panic, for it sounded like metal grating against metal being wheezed out by bloodied lungs. The other shadow, Matthias, grumbled in the shadows.

“’Course not. I wasn’t planning on lettin’ him waltz out all laissez-faire an’ shit. I’m not stupid, Kane, I know what I’m doing. Besides, this one’s a little more important than that rat, if you haven’t noticed. My life’s on the line if I blow this one. But man, the rewards are sweet if I don’t.” The armed man barked at the sickening voice. Jack sensed him turn in the cloak of blackness.

“Something tells me that you don’t know what ‘laissez-faire’ means, Matthias…Okay, get the kid to HQ and I’ll meet up with you there.” All of a sudden, the figure vanished into a cyclone of red. Jack nearly shrieked at the spontaneous explosion of energy, but he could only manage to swallow through his shock. The other man shrugged in the shadows.

“Oh sure, Kane, leave me all the dirty work. You, small fry!” As the man bellowed, Jack nearly jumped out of his restraints.

“M-Me?” Jack whimpered pitifully, still not knowing what to make of all that had happened. The man grunted impatiently.

“Of course you, you idiot! I wasn’t talking to the bloody wall now, was I? Get up when I tell you to. We’re going to get out of this shithole, but for my dear friend who just up and left, I’m gonna need you blindfolded. So do me a favor, yeah? Would you kindly put it on compliantly like a good lad, lest you want us to drape you innards on our lounge walls.” Jack immediately squeezed his eyes shut. The man silently cocked a brow at the reaction.

“At least Ryan trained you to be obedient. Would be the one thing he did right.” The man muttered as he approached the boy. Jack felt a rag, with abrasive cloth and general filth mixed in the fibers, being tied around his head. It smelled of rancid fish and blood. Jack choked on the scent, but blinked through the sting in his eyes. He felt the restraints around his legs slacken, and then the binds on his hands. Jack began to get up, but a forceful hand pushed him back down.

“Ah, ah, ah: Not so fast. I told you to get up when I said you could. Need I remind you who has the gun here?” At the sound of a spinning cylinder, Jack’s heart began racing rapidly. He needed no further encouragement to sit back down.

As he did, the ropes around his hands were readjusted so that they now tied his wrists together. The man took a step back, as if to examine his handiwork. He clapped once, seemingly invigorated by his walking ticket to fortune.


“All right! You’re coming with me now. Loosen your bindings or your blindfold, and I’ll put a bullet in your skull. Good? Okay, let’s move out!” Jack flinched as the oxidized metal door of the fishery screeched open. With an onward push from his captor, Jack started stumbling sightlessly to the haven for the miscreants of Rapture, and to the heart of enemy territory.

Bioshock Haven, Chapter 1

The ballroom was donned “Midas” for a very good reason. The grandeur of the aristocratic hotspot was not exaggerated. Each wall was adorned with precious metals with precisely demarcated indents, where defined marble statues were housed.
Flocking about the room were handsomely appareled people, wearing silks of elegance that equated to the noble scene about them. Some clutched wine glasses and chatted about current events in Rapture. Others, mostly the guests of those invited, would stand idly about, examining the décor or the ceiling in the hopes of dissipating into the awkward air of unfamiliarity.
Jack Ryan was one of the latter. Sure, he had grown accustomed to these grand events: Occasionally meeting some important figure upon his father’s request, having strangers try to engage in half-hearted conversation in order to get in with his family’s power, and generally basking in the discomfort of the entire ordeal. He was the son of the city’s founder, Andrew Ryan, after all. But that certainly did not mean that he wished to partake in the festivities.
Jack stood idly by the food table, looking at the assortments of delicacies that the cooks had conjured up today. Calamari, large seasoned lobsters, seared salmon; about the usual. Jack smiled, admiring the care that the chefs put into their work. To Jack, it seemed as though the food was always precisely in the image of the artist that made it.
Gliding along the table, a plate of scrumptious-smelling squares caught Jack’s eye, as well as his nose. He reached for one, anticipating a taste as toothsome as the smell it emitted.
Taking a bite was like being inside a bathysphere plunging into icy depths: It felt warm, buttery, lighter than air, and, though Jack thought it somewhat strange, oddly safe. It was almost like he was enveloped by an impenetrable shroud; by a mother’s arms.
Jack savored the richness and almost magical quality of the treat before Jack took another bite. He smiled, the first genuine smile in the entire evening. As the ambience of droning aristocrats was not as boisterous towards the secluded dining table, and no other nobleperson was in the vicinity, Jack heaved a relieved sigh and removed his mask.
The rush of air as his visor peeled off was a glorious feeling. It was the feeling of freedom, something Jack supposed he might never be. Jack repressed a frown.
                Freedom…It had been a long time since a vague hope of that crossed his mind. He supposed it better to admit defeat than suffer the reality of a false victory. But yet some glimmer of hope seemed to shine brighter than all of the gold lined in the room.

“Likin’ the food?” Jack jumped as a gruff, thickly accented voice emerged from the shadows. Jack spun around, and released a nervous chuckle. A man, dressed far less elaborately and expensively than the other occupants of the room, was leaning against the wall with what looked like a glass of whisky in his hand. The man offered a smile, and Jack returned it graciously.

“Heh, sorry. You kind of startled me.” Jack rubbed his neck embarrassedly as the words left his mouth. The man’s grin expanded and he shook his head with a chortle.

“It idn’t you that needs to be apologizing, mate. I may have thought to warn ya before I spoke.” The man rumbled in a rather easy-going manner and cleared his throat with a swig of his drink.

Jack smiled, but it began to wane as he tried to identify the man’s face cloaked beneath the shadow of his hat. The man smirked, and Jack once again nervously apologized.

“No worries. We’ve never met before. I was just seeing whether or not you were likin’ the meal.” Jack grinned at this, an excited gleam filling his eye.

“Very much so! There is so much intricate detail in the food. The creativity ranges from color to taste. My compliments to the chef!” The man grinned broadly as Jack spoke.

“Well, then thanks for the compliment.” The gruff man said, chasing his words with another sip of his alcohol. Jack’s brows raised in surprise.

“You’re the chef?” Jack wondered aloud. The man gave a hearty laugh at Jack’s astonishment, which caused Jack to slap a hand over his lips and curse his lack of restraint.

“Wot, shocked to see a lower classman cookin’ up some good food?” Jack blushed and twiddled his thumbs anxiously.

“N-no- I – T-that’s not what I meant. I guess I just expected to see a chef walking around with an apron on or something.” Jack wanted to smack himself. An apron or something? I sound stupid to myself!

Luckily, the man took no offense. “Issalright, mate. I was just pullin’ your leg a bit. I call my creation ‘Ambrosia.’ Y’know, like the stuff the Greek gods used to eat?” Jack nodded his head.

“With how good it tastes, I can certainly see why you’d call it that!” Jack coyly smiled as the man swelled a bit with pride. It felt foreign to Jack, sustaining an actual conversation. He was so accustomed to people jumping the gun and talking about his wealth and how they would love to ‘get to know’ the family better.

The man outstretched a large, meaty hand. A smirk played on his lips. “Seems like this is the first time you’ve ever talked to someone, mate. Ya didn’t introduce yourself.”

Jack laughed, forgetting all about such a formality. His hand, uncorrupted by a day of duty, met the man’s in a firm shake. “My name’s Jack. And you are?”

The man’s smile faded as Jack stated his name. His grip loosened a bit, and Jack looked worryingly to the man, wondering if he did something wrong.

“You’re Jack? Jack Ryan?” The man asked, his voice sounding almost, well, disappointed. Jack gulped.
“Y-Yes I am. Um, and, uh, you are…?” The man returned to his previous smirking state, though it had dampened a little.

“Pete.” The man said abruptly. Jack’s eyes darted to the floor. The man’s demeanor had shifted rather rapidly. Was this man planning on earning Jack’s trust so he could try to infiltrate his family? Jack gave a shaky smile, feeling rather upset that this man may have been trying to use him.

“Well, it was a pleasure to meet you, Pete. I hope to see you around.” Jack turned on his heel before Pete put one of his large paws on Jack’s shoulder. Jack turned to address him, taken aback by this sudden action.

Pete looked somewhat pained, as though he had been forced to shred some priceless painting. “Look here, Jack. You seem like a good kid. Take some advice, eh? Go to your house and get to bed. It’d be a damn shame if you were found amongst this snobby lot.” Jack felt baffled at this odd exchange.

“Go to bed? Why ‘go to bed?’” Jack asked the man, Pete’s ominous words processing in his mind. Pete frowned.

“I got the feeling that you may get real tired soon, is all.” And with that, Pete roughly patted Jack’s shoulder and strode away. Jack didn’t know what to make of the strange words, the man, or the situation in whole.

This strange premonition of dread overwhelmed Jack upon pondering the word though. Why would I get sleepy? It’s only just hit midnight, hasn’t it? Jack looked to the hanging clock in the center of the room. The golden statue of Helios in his grand chariot carrying the sun had not even drifted past the eleventh tick, meaning that it wasn’t even midnight.

Jack swallowed a nervousness in the pit of his gut. I don’t know what Pete meant when he said to go lie down, but I’m starting to suspect that going home may be a good idea.

Just as Jack was about to head home and retire for the evening, a familiar call rang out from across the room.

There stood Jack’s father, waving him over with…two guests. Jack groaned.

“Jack!” Andrew Ryan beckoned. “Come meet Mr. Elliot and Ms. Birmingham!” Jack gave a nearly inaudible sigh and put on a polite grin. Walking over to his father and his associates, Jack shook the sir and madam’s hand with a ‘how do you do?’

“Winston, Martha, this is my son Jack. Jack, you know of the Tobaccorium, correct?” Jack nodded courteously to his father. Andrew grinned. “These are the owners of said establishment. They were wondering if you would be interested in sponsoring their product.”

Martha, a toothy lady with an ivory and gold feline mask, stepped forward. “You know, it would be an honor to have someone of your stature sponsor us.”

Winston, a mustached man a bunny veneer, added. “And, you seem like quite the gentleman for the job; What with your handsome face and friendly personality, I’m sure we can expand business.”

Yeah, blatantly admit to my face that you want to use me. That’s a nice way to make friends. Jack inwardly scowled. With a charming smile, Jack replied.

“I would love to invest in your business!” Jack said, a pearly white smile flashing briefly. “However, I would like to speak to my father for a moment if that’s alright with you.” Winston and Martha exchanged smiles and agreed. Andrew waved them off, a bit confused as to why Jack pulled him over.

“What is it, Jack?” Andrew asked, quizzical to the brown-haired boy’s nervous behavior. Jack looked his father in the eye.

“I think I have to go home.” Andrew cocked a brow at this.

“You think you have to go home? Why? Did you leave something? I can send for someone to-“ Jack patted his dad’s shoulder affectionately in an attempt to silence him. He nervously licked his lips.

“No, no. It isn’t anything like that. I-I…just…well…” Andrew cocked a brow.

“You just what?” Jack looked around nervously, and upon seeing no one snooping around to eavesdrop, leaned in and whispered to his father.

“I think something bad might happen.” Andrew laughed lightly and put an arm around his son’s shoulders.

“Come now, Jack, you know we have the best security in Rapture. Even if someone wanted to do something malicious in intent, they couldn’t. Now Jack, you look a bit pale. Why don’t you get some water?” Jack shook his head.

“No, I don’t need water. Father, Pete, the cook, told me something strange. He said I might get sleepy. I don’t know why, and I don’t exactly know what he means, but something about that troubles me.” Andrew frowned and narrowed his eyes.

“Son” Andrew said strained, as if he were mulling something over internally. “What did you say that cook’s name was?” Jack raised his brows.

“P-Pete.” Andrew’s face turned to stone.

“We don’t have a chef named Pete.”



The sound of metal gently tapping on a glass rang around the room. A sea of bestial masquerade visages turned in an almost synchronized move, and the haughty laughter and banter ceased not seconds after the tapping started. Everyone knew that when an individual of such importance as the Ryan’s were about to toast, silence was a must.
But the Ryan’s weren’t the ones toasting tonight…
“Ladies and gentlemen!” A figure clad in an owl mask and overalls stood atop the severed neck of a statue depicting Nike. From the spectators’ view, he held the stance of a venerable roman soldier, standing proud and prominent atop the statue.
 The upper-class men and women cocked their heads, baffled by the presence of this man, caked in grime, grease, and dirt, in such a place of high standing. The man in the owl mask grinned at their confusion. Behind him, another dirtied man, this time a scraggly fellow in a fox max, limped inside. In suit of him, yet another man, a portly chap in a walrus mask and muttonchops, took his place beside the two.
The man in the owl mask cleared his throat, almost jestingly, and began to speak once more. “As you know, there have been many conflicts between you and us mere ‘proletarians,’” He air quoted and scoffed. The party-goers looked to each other, not knowing what to make of the uninvited attendee. The man smiled softly, almost sadly, and continued.
“But today, the conflict ends. And…” He paused and looked behind him. The opulent crowd directed their eye-line to where he had turned, and upon doing so, froze in their place.
Andrew bore a weary look on his face and clutched his son’s shoulder pensively. Jack turned to him, his dilated pupils conveying the obvious fright that he was experiencing. Andrew spoke in a low, grim voice, his rumble scarcely audible.
“Jack, find the back entrance in the kitchen: the one in the freezer. Leave and head for home.  Make sure Antony is with you. I won’t let these bastards lay a hand on you.” Jack’s eyes widened, and he looked very much like the vulnerable child he was. Andrew looked to the three men, pained.
“Quick now,” Andrew whispered. “You don’t have time to hesitate.” Jack stood in silence. He glanced at the men, then back to Andrew.
“F-Father?” Jack’s voice cracked. He shook his head. I’m a grown man! He shouted at himself internally. You’re almost nineteen. It’s time to make your own decision. Jack inhaled deeply, the overall-clad man still pontificating to the rest of the crowd behind him. He looked his father dead in the eye, and Andrew deadpanned.
“I won’t leave you.”
Andrew grumbled below his breath. Just then, a loud clang echoed in the room. Both Jack and Andrew turned their heads almost instantaneously.
The man in the walrus mask had extracted a hammer from his pocket and tossed it on the gilded, tiled floors. All the while, the man in the fox visage inched forward, tossing a mess of old, water-stained letters on the ground. The owl man sneered, his entire demeanor seeming to gleam with rebellious spirit.
“You see this?” He hollered, causing the crowd to cower momentarily in surprise. “This is what you, you with your fuckin’ pockets full of money, have been doing to us. We haven’t had a political voice ever since we got here. Give us what was promised to us a decade ago: Don’t treat us like the scum of the sea anymore and there won’t be any problems.”
His condescending gaze swept over the gathering of handsomely dressed people. A man, well garbed in a gold and white suit and a cuckoo mask stepped forward haughtily.
“Doing what to who? As far as I’m concerned, you proletarians and plebeians have no place in the political setting, being as the majority of you haven’t even attended primary school.” The owl man snarled, causing the man to retreat back to the swarm of confused onlookers.
The owl man took a deep breath, composing himself. He spoke. “We simply want some equality and… prevalence in this community, see? We don’t take kindly to folks sayin’ we ain’t worth anything.”
Another voice, this time belonging to a woman in a fish mask, resounded from the wall of ambient, urgent whispers. “And how exactly do you intend on altering our opinion?” The owl man grinned, an unsettling, Cheshire grin.
“Like this.”
 Bemused, the mass gawked as throngs of more masked, underdressed men and women poured in, almost endlessly. The man in the owl mask laughed loudly, the boisterous sound provoking hesitant fear from the richly gowned below. He reached into his left pocket, his patchwork pants shuffling as he did so.
And he pulled out a gun.
Soon, masses of people began to panic. The guards leapt into action, attempting to surge forward and confiscate the weapons. Upon performing said action, a warning shot rendered loud and clear. Unfortunately, the warning was a shot through one of the guards’ stomach. The guards all drew their pistols, anxious to put down those who killed their companion. But it was in vain, for the straight second they unsheathed their guns, bullets tore through hands that held them.
All around, the people fell to their knees. The guards, deciding it wiser to not engage in a gunfight in the middle of a civilian-packed room, holstered their guns. Andrew furrowed his brow, his face darkened by anger and anxiety. He watched as the guards simultaneously surrendered, their weapons now tucked in their designated holster.
The man in the owl mask turned back towards the fish-faced woman. “Us ‘plebs’ outnumber you rich fucks ten to one.” Heads turned nervously to the greasy newcomers.
From the depths of the hallways, scarcely lit and scarcely visible, thousands of heads stained with dirt and decay emerged, like some foreboding legion of silent watchmen. They approached in a slow shuffle, the shuffle of a poor man who had been burdened with holding up a country for years without end. But the end was nigh.
The owl man chuckled. “You gotta understand that these guys, my friends and family, haven’t had a good paycheck for years,” Suddenly, the man’s false face fell to reveal his anger. “Because you fuckers haven’t given them a chance to change the law!” The man’s veins were visible through the skin of his neck, his jugular pulsating with rage.

The crowd withdrew, men wearing faces of horror clutching sobbing women and waiting their impending demise. The utterly mute middle class and poor in the halls dragged themselves to the center of the room. Among them were men and women, individuals with missing limbs and incapacities, peoples of all colors, beliefs, and creeds. They all fought for the purpose of a perfect and beautiful union, and they all opted to fight until death.

The man in the owl mask craned his head back to the entrepreneurs below his perch. He spoke up, slightly choked by the emotion that had constricted his throat. “Today the cream rises belly up to the top of the Atlantic. We are your neighbors, living in the same neighborhood, yet you never acknowledge our presence. So, we brought a little…parting gift.”

Suddenly, an autonomous shadow stepped beside the statue. All the partygoers gasped at they abject sight. Jack tried to filter through the crowd and catch a glimpse at whatever had elicited such a shocked reaction from the crowd. Jack squinted: He could only barely see a figure. The figure, a large bodied man, was dressed in a white apron and cap. Underneath the articles of clothing was a layer of middle class outfitry. Underneath the mask was…

Jack’s eyes grew wide.

Underneath the mask was Pete.

Screams spread rapidly, as though wildfire had sprung at the bottom of the ocean. One by one, guests who had eaten the ambrosia began to collapse. Jack halted, eyes wide with fear. It wasn’t long before he had begun to fall against his father.
Andrew, both worried and puzzled, help stand him up. “Jack?” Jack’s eyelids sunk over the top of his iris, a curtain preventing him from seeing the stage. He stumbled, his sight growing dim and his legs turning into lead below him. Andrew grasped his shoulders and shook him.
“Jack?!” Andrew grabbed the boy right before he descended roughly to the floor. Jack could only see black.
Jack was fading in and out of consciousness. Before he completely lost his consciousness, he caught glimpses of guards and Atlas’ rebels being blown away by blasts from a multitude of guns, he saw men and women bolting for the door in an attempt to be spared getting gunned down, and, though he was unsure, he thought he recalled a pair of bright blue eyes watching him before he blacked out.

 That ambrosia sure served its purpose. Pete was right.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

A small bit of writing that I wrote back in sixth grade after an odd dream :) These kinds of imaginings come and go. Seldom am I dreaming that I'm asleep, though. (Inception) Anyway, without further ado, here is the story. :D




I feel cold.
Not cold enough to voice a complaint, but just cold enough to shiver. Even if I tried to speak, this strange tug in the back of my throat denies me the choice to do so. So I simply lay on the the firm, chilled floor.
It feels like stone. I feel like stone. My limbs feel as though they're merged to my torso. My vocal cords lack the ability to communicate. Believe me, I've tried for what seems like a lifetime.
I rest in this place, my heart yearning to see light. I long to have the ephoric rays part my eyelids and drink in the sights ofthe world around me, but alas I cannot.
Soft sobbing echos in the medium of damp air. It resounds from what sounds like a rather open area. The sobs are delicate and feminine, like the siren song of a mockingbird remorsing over the corpses of her departed chicks.
Often times the source of the sobbing would approach me when the pitter patter of rain fell on the outside. Graceful, petite hands would brush strands of hair from my face. On other occasions, a stray hand would grasp my lame palm and squeeze lightly. I felt sorrow intermigling with hope radiate from the source, a woman I assume. A very contridictary mix of feelings.
Sometimes, her weeping would cease.  Like a wisp, she would float over with scarcely a sound to my side. She would snake her arms around my neck and prop me upon a softer, warmer surface. When she was doing this, often would she hum the most beautiful of melodies with a voice that shimmered with elegance and tenderness.
Behind the darkness of my eyelids, I would watch her, wistful to inform her of just how lovely she was. My ears perked and tuned my attention to that lucious, beautiful voice. I tried, once, to tell her. I knew it would be to no avail, but I wanted to at least try. But, to my misfortune, all that escaped me was a soft exhale.
On the nights when fortune favored me, she would curl up beside me, a move both brazen and benevolent considering the things I have done. Her gentle breath lulled me to the eternal rest of awarness that I appear to be condemned to. Soft curls tickled my cheeks, but I wished not to blow them away even if I could.
Sometimes, when she awoke, she would regard my sleeping form as though I was concsious. Then realization would wash over her, and her breath would become broken and uneven. She would unsheathe only what I can deduct as a blade and walk away.
I would eagerly await her return during that time. Sometimes I would try to remember what I was doing before I came into this vegatative state. More times than not, I wanted to think of who I was. All I truly remember was that I was feared by many, yet known by few.
When the young woman would return, she would feed me. My gratitude was much, though it was not audibly acknowladged. Typically, she would bring some form of vegatation. It slid down my unresponsive throat easily enough, though it would sting ever so slightly. Every so often, she would feed me an poignant tasting herb. My nose would twitch and wrinkle subconsiouly at the overwhelming aroma.
She would apologize when she brought me it. She would explain that it was to help me escape this hold over my body. And her voice when she spoke... Her tongue was laden in a rich accent foreign to me. I do not quite recall such an accent being heard by my ears ever, and yet I obviously must have known this woman. Yet, If I cannot remember the past, then perhaps I speak out of bewilderment due to my condition rather than true recollection.
And while I was wondering, my mind would disregard the water that cooled my throat and soothed the passing of the herb. It washed away the vile flavor and sent a slightly fresher undertone of taste to my tongue.
Some nights she would beseech to me, begging me in a rather piteous and heart-wrenching tone to wake. Her voice would erupt into sobs, and I even felt at times a sharp sting across my face. Sometimes she would repeat the action,the sounds of livid palms making fast contact with my cheek would echo abruptly and break the silence of the room. Her face would bury in the crook of my neck, and I would try with all my mght to apologize, to wake.

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Zeros and Ones

Hello! :D So I know it has been a while since the last post, but here is another story. This one is a little hard to follow sometimes due to the ideas spawning at different times, and the writings are separated by spaces. This is definitely not complete yet, but is something that is extremely fun to write about :) Hope you enjoy!




ZEROS AND ONES


                The night was cool and the air was blustery the day that the executives of the Earth declared the discovery of fresh, potable water on Mars. Billions worldwide listened with attentive ear to the broadcasts, scientists clutched their fellow man in ecstatic haze, and the world itself laughed with joy. Truly nothing could have dampened the spirit of that glorious day.
                The next day, however, was another story.
                The first assault occurred on March 18th, 2087, when the nations Germany and Russia broke out into a heated altercation over the land disputes and investments in their scientific departments, already seeking to stake out land on the planet. Soon, America, France, Canada, Italy, and Israel leapt into the quarrel, kindling the fire of the dispute. From there, chaos ensued. Progressively, more and more countries began to take sides, be it another countries or their own. The battle of words soon became a battle of fists and weapons, leaving diplomats of six countries dead and hundreds more injured.
                The world was shocked at the news, never before beholding such an outburst in an intended meeting of peace. With the given violence instigated by the planet of war, scientist around the globe decided to fund an underground project: Project Quercus. From it, great innovations were made. The advanced magnetic motor, the solar powered filtering system, and, most importantly, the ship ‘Libero,’ a ship capable of transporting five million people to Mars in an estimated twelve years.
                In order to escape the sinews of a corrupted Earth, twelve million voyaged on the ship, which made two separate trips over the span of two years. Somehow, they had remained discreet, their station at the Galapagos Islands, transporting animal and plant species of practically endless variations.


                Sam’s eyes widened, awestruck at the pure wondrous innovation of the Mech. It stood about twelve feet tall, its appearance angular and sharp, like the blades on its hands. It was painted a deep blue and silver, like the colors of the Quercus flag. Its mask, a horned helmet and faceplate, with dim aqua eyes that had not yet come to life. Sam ran a hand through his dirty blond muss of hair.
                The young man scaled the Mech, wanting to examine the intricacy of its design. He was not an engineer; far from it, actually. He was not stupid, by any means, but he certainly did not comprehend how the hands of men could craft such mechanical perfection. Sam shook his head and frowned. This was a bad thing. A very bad thing. He shouldn’t be marveling at its detail, nor welcoming it on the planet. He should be wary. But somehow, he was too enthralled to really care.
                Sam touched the metal gingerly, his hands brushing the sleek iron of the robot’s leg. His eyes wandered up to its torso. There, engraved and highlighted with dark blue paint, was the name ‘Colossus 303: Decimus.’ Sam smirked at the name.
                “Decimus, huh?” Sam muttered to himself softly. His eyes fell back down to where his hand rested on the machine. Suddenly, the leg jerked, and Sam flew backwards in fright with a startled yelp.
                The robot’s eyes glowed. It looked down to Sam, who now was on his back staring up in shock and fear at the metal being that towered above him. From beneath the metallic mask over its mouth, the Colossus’ voice rasped from its speakers.
                “Hello, companion. I am Decimus.”

                Decimus’ circuits spat electric current, his eyes flashing faintly from the blow. The other Mech, a large, grey robot with a hearty, cubic structure and blazing eyes of yellow and red, bellowed at him, for the robots were sentient, and this one was quite clearly enraged.
                “Why do you assist them?” The Tank crooned wickedly in a low bravado. “When it is quite clear that they shall die? Why do you shield them with yourself when you could just as easily turn and sweep them away with a bat of your hand? Do you not want liberation?”

                Decimus’ voice cracked, his speakers damaged by the force of the Tank’s attack. “We may all have different roots, but we grow together. Together, as a team, we form the trunk that supports the tree boughs, which in turn support the branches, which in turn support the leaves, which one day will flower and bear fruit and a haven for all beings.”

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Lab of The Dead

Hope you enjoy! :D

For Doctor Fletcher Jackson, zombies were the least concern of the team at Base Delta. For instance, the blood-stained floors were really quite a haggard sight. And the canteen could do with serving more meal options.
Persistent groans disrupted Fletcher’s train of thought. The scientist turned to behold his latest specimen cocking its putrefied head at him quizzically, obviously confused by his master’s lack of interaction with him. Fletcher grinned at his grimy prodigy. His favorite specimen, Grim, had already learned more in one week than any of his subjects had picked up in a month. It was his fifth week of experimentation, and the rotting lab rat had begun to grow on Fletcher.
Grim groaned lowly and pointed to a damp cardboard box of miscellaneous objects Fletcher had scavenged for experimentation. Fletcher looked to the box and chuckled.

“Oh, so you’re ready to get started?” Fletcher asked the shambling corpse light heartedly. Grim’s dead, clouded eyes had a small glint in them, and he responded ‘enthusiastically’ with a rumble.

Bioshock: Haven

Hello! :D This is not a completed work, but a lot of the stuff I am currently uploading is to make sure it is preserved before anything bad happens to my currently malfunctioning computer. Anyhow, cheers!




The ballroom was donned “Midas” for a very good reason. The grandeur of the aristocratic hotspot was not exaggerated. Each wall was adorned with precious metals with precisely demarcated indents, where defined marble statues were housed.
Flocking about the room were handsomely appareled people, wearing silks of elegance that equated to the noble scene about them. Some clutched wine glasses and chatted about current events in Rapture. Others, mostly the guests of those invited, would stand idly about, examining the décor or the ceiling in the hopes of dissipating into the awkward air of unfamiliarity.
Jack Ryan was one of the latter. Sure, he had grown accustomed to these grand events: Occasionally meeting some important figure upon his father’s request, having strangers try to engage in half-hearted conversation in order to get in with his family’s power, and generally basking in the discomfort of the entire ordeal. He was the son of the city’s founder, Andrew Ryan, after all. But that certainly did not mean that he wished to partake in the festivities.
Jack stood idly by the food table, looking at the assortments of delicacies that the cooks had conjured up today. Calamari, large seasoned lobsters, seared salmon; about the usual. Jack smiled, admiring the care that the chefs put into their work. To Jack, it seemed as though the food was always precisely in the image of the artist that made it.
Gliding along the table, a plate of scrumptious-smelling squares caught Jack’s eye, as well as his nose. He reached for one, anticipating a taste as toothsome as the smell it emitted.
Taking a bite was like being inside a bathysphere plunging into icy depths: It felt warm, buttery, lighter than air, and, though Jack thought it somewhat strange, oddly safe. It was almost like he was enveloped by an impenetrable shroud; by a mother’s arms.
Jack savored the richness and almost magical quality of the treat before Jack took another bite. He smiled, the first genuine smile in the entire evening. As the ambience of droning aristocrats was not as boisterous towards the secluded dining table, and no other nobleperson was in the vicinity, Jack heaved a relieved sigh and removed his mask.
The rush of air as his visor peeled off was a glorious feeling. It was the feeling of freedom, something Jack supposed he might never be. Jack repressed a frown.
                Freedom…It had been a long time since a vague hope of that crossed his mind. He supposed it better to admit defeat than suffer the reality of a false victory. But yet some glimmer of hope seemed to shine brighter than all of the gold lined in the room.

“Likin’ the food?” Jack jumped as a gruff, thickly accented voice emerged from the shadows. Jack spun around, and released a nervous chuckle. A man, dressed far less elaborately and expensively than the other occupants of the room, was leaning against the wall with what looked like a glass of whisky in his hand. The man offered a smile, and Jack returned it graciously.

“Heh, sorry. You kind of startled me.” Jack rubbed his neck embarrassedly as the words left his mouth. The man’s grin expanded and he shook his head with a chortle.

“It idn’t you that needs to be apologizing, mate. I may have thought to warn ya before I spoke.” The man rumbled in a rather easy-going manner and cleared his throat with a swig of his drink.

Jack smiled, but it began to wane as he tried to identify the man’s face cloaked beneath the shadow of his hat. The man smirked, and Jack once again nervously apologized.

“No worries. We’ve never met before. I was just seeing whether or not you were likin’ the meal.” Jack grinned at this, an excited gleam filling his eye.

“Very much so! There is so much intricate detail in the food. The creativity ranges from color to taste. My compliments to the chef!” The man grinned broadly as Jack spoke.

“Well, then thanks for the compliment.” The gruff man said, chasing his words with another sip of his alcohol. Jack’s eyes widened in surprise.

“You’re the chef?” Jack wondered aloud. The man gave a hearty laugh at Jack’s astonishment, which caused Jack to slap a hand over his lips and curse his lack of restraint.

“Wot, shocked to see a lower classman cookin’ up some good food?” Jack blushed and twiddled his thumbs anxiously.

“N-no- I – T-that’s not what I meant. I guess I just expected to see a chef walking around with an apron on or something.” Jack wanted to smack himself. An apron or something? I sound stupid to myself!

Luckily, the man took no offense. “Issalright, mate. I was just pullin’ your leg a bit. I call my creation ‘Ambrosia.’ Y’know, like the stuff the Greek gods used to eat?” Jack nodded his head.

“With how good it tastes, I can certainly see why you’d call it that!” Jack coyly smiled as the man swelled a bit with pride. It felt foreign to Jack, sustaining an actual conversation. He was so accustomed to people jumping the gun and talking about his wealth and how they would love to ‘get to know’ the family better.

The man outstretched a large, meaty hand. A smirk played on the man’s lips. “Seems like this is the first time you’ve ever talked to someone, mate. Ya didn’t introduce yourself.”

Jack laughed, forgetting all about such a formality. His petite hand met the man’s in a firm shake. “My name’s Jack. And you are?”

The man’s smile faded as Jack stated his name. His grip loosened a bit, and Jack looked worryingly to the man, wondering if he did something wrong.

“You’re Jack? Jack Ryan?” The man asked, his voice sounding almost, well, disappointed. Jack gulped.
“Y-Yes I am. Um, and, uh, you are…?” The man returned to his previous smirking state, though it had dampened a little.

“Pete.” The man said abruptly. Jack’s eyes darted to the floor. The man’s demeanor had shifted rather rapidly. Was this man planning on earning Jack’s trust so he could try to infiltrate his family? Jack gave a shaky smile, feeling rather upset that this man may have been trying to use him.

“Well, it was a pleasure to meet you, Pete. I hope to see you around.” Jack turned on his heel before Pete put one of his large paws on Jack’s shoulder. Jack turned to address him, taken aback by this sudden action.

Pete looked somewhat pained, as though he had been forced to shred a DaVinci painting. “Look here, Jack. You seem like a good kid. Take some advice, eh? Go to your house and get to bed. It’d be a damn shame if you were found amongst this snobby lot.” Jack felt baffled at this odd exchange.

“Go to bed? Why ‘go to bed?’” Jack asked the man, Pete’s ominous words processing in his mind. Pete frowned.

“I got the feeling that you may get real tired soon, is all.” And with that, Pete roughly patted Jack’s shoulder and strode away. Jack didn’t know what to make of the strange words, the man, or the situation in whole.

This strange premonition of dread overwhelmed Jack upon pondering the word though. Why would I get sleepy? It’s only just hit midnight, hasn’t it? Jack looked to the hanging clock in the center of the room. The golden statue of Helios in his grand chariot carrying the sun had not even drifted past the eleventh tick, meaning that it wasn’t even midnight.

Jack swallowed a nervousness in the pit of his gut. I don’t know what Pete meant when he said to go lie down, but I’m starting to suspect that going home may be a good idea.

Just as Jack was about to head home and retire for the evening, a familiar call rang out from across the room.

There stood Jack’s father, waving him over with…two guests. Jack groaned.

“Jack!” Andrew Ryan beckoned. “Come meet Mr. Elliot and Ms. Birmingham!” Jack gave a nearly inaudible sigh and put on a polite grin. Walking over to his father and his associates, Jack shook the sir and madam’s hand with a ‘how do you do?’

“Winston, Martha, this is my son Jack. Jack, you know of the Tobaccorium, correct?” Jack nodded courteously to his father. Andrew grinned. “These are the owners of said establishment. They were wondering if you would be interested in sponsoring their product.”

Martha, a toothy lady with an ivory and gold feline mask, stepped forward. “You know, it would be an honor to have someone of your stature sponsor us.”

Winston, a mustached man a bunny veneer, added. “And, you seem like quite the gentleman for the job; What with your handsome face and friendly personality, I’m sure we can expand business.”

Yeah, blatantly admit to my face that you want to use me. That’s a nice way to make friends. Jack inwardly scowled. With a charming smile, Jack replied.

“I would love to invest in your business!” Jack said, a pearly white smile flashing briefly. “However, I would like to speak to my father for a moment if that’s alright with you.” Winston and Martha exchanged smiles and agreed. Andrew waved them off, a bit confused as to why Jack pulled him over.

“What is it, Jack?” Andrew asked, quizzical to the brown-haired boy’s nervous behavior. Jack looked his father in the eye.

“I think I have to go home.” Andrew cocked a brow at this.

“You think you have to go home? Why? Did you leave something? I can send for someone to-“ Jack patted his dad’s shoulder affectionately in an attempt to silence him. He nervously licked his lips.

“No, no. It isn’t anything like that. I-I…just…well…” Andrew cocked a brow.

“You just what?” Jack looked around nervously, and upon seeing no one snooping around to eavesdrop, leaned in and whispered to his father.

“I think something bad might happen.” Andrew laughed lightly and put an arm around his son’s shoulders.

“Come now, Jack, you know we have the best security in Rapture. Even if someone wanted to do something malicious in intent, they couldn’t. Now Jack, you look a bit pale. Why don’t you get some water?” Jack shook his head.

“No, I don’t need water. Father, Pete, the cook, told me something strange. He said I might get sleepy.” Andrew frowned and narrowed his eyes.

“Son” Andrew said strained, as if he were mulling something over internally. “What did you say that cook’s name was?” Jack raised his brows.

“P-Pete.” Andrew’s face turned to stone.

“We don’t have a chef named Pete.”

The sound of metal gently tapping on a glass rang around the room. A sea of bestial masquerade visages turned in an almost synchronized move, and the haughty laughter and banter ceased not seconds after the tapping started.

Isle of Bone Chapter One

Kent Henderson was just an average man caught in the midst of a war, like so many billions of others. He sat in a white tiled room, where the air was still and chilly. He grimaced at the ambience of the hall he sat in. It consisted of pens clicked by anxious hands; chaste whispers of large, Latin words he assumed had to do with medicine, and the rancid smell of various chemicals. 
Shifting on the faux leather bench, Kent could not help but feel misplaced at the scene. After all, he was only an undertaker. He never went to college, nor did his family prior to him. This rave about neurology baffled him. He silently regretted that. If Kent had become at least someone adept in the art of such skills, he would at least learn how to ward off his splitting headache.
The insistent beeps of the machines around him gave unsettling, echoing pings in his mind. They ricocheted unbearably in the vast concoction of irksome sounds. Kent grumbled low, cupping his hands and covering his weary head with them. Four hours. That was how long he had sat there, stagnant and stiff. And on top of that, he couldn’t leave until the doctor approved the body for examination.
Kent’s eyes shifted from his palms to the bench beneath him. It was an atrocious shade of green. He grimaced upon setting his eyes on it. Just the sight of it made him feel nauseous, not that the entire institution did not make him feel nauseous enough as it was. Kent snorted. He had grown so bored and grouchy he began to criticize the furniture. The doctor needed to hasten, or he would outright leave to go home and sleep, regardless of whether or not that was morally apropos.
The lights in a cracked door across from the bench in which Kent sat became brighter and blinding as the door swung open. Kent shielded his eyes, not expecting it to move for at least another two hours. A man in mint-colored scrubs and a mask held the knob firmly with his right gloved hand while his left tentatively clutched a clipboard.
“Mr. Henderson?” The nurse called. Kent rubbed his eyes with his thick forefingers. He yawned as he contracted his left shoulder and rolled it back. The nurse turned to him with impatient eyes, almost lecturing him to stop wasting time.
Kent muttered as he parted from the bench. “ ‘Bout time someone got me…” He was just loud enough for the nurse to be in earshot. Kent expected the man to narrow his eyes, but he simply stood there looking, daresay, quite visibly shaken by something.
Kent paled slightly at this. As he approached the door, Kent addressed the man in the walkway.

“What’s the matter with you, lad? Looks like you’ve just met a ghost.” The nurse shook his head, but said nothing. This only confirmed Kent’s skepticism on what the subject of interest was. Kent himself felt a knot forming in his throat, though he dismissed it with an edgy gulp.

Prison Stories From Pluto

Hello! :D A warning to those who have little fellas present, this one contains a bit of language. Enjoy!



The kill was relatively quick. The old man had certainly put up a vicious fight for someone around eighty Earth years.
However, all in all, the alien BiF had recognized and his robots had ended the fight hastily after it had commenced. Now the dual blaster wielding creature was scavenging their fallen prey and reaping what they had so violently sown. His robots were standing idly, whirring and rumbling as they awaited their next command.
BiF and Terrance walked up to the alien. Terrance knew that his father’s business had brought many an…interesting character into his life, many deadly, but this one…
As they approached the robots almost instantaneously raised their wepons. Terrance raised his hammer, but BiF raised his hand in reassurance.
The alien, probably expecting the robots to have malfunctioned, simply shrugged it off. Until a calloused, marred hand grasped his shoulder.
“Why hello, Hans,” The grizzled mercenary grumbled. “It seems like forever ago that we’d seen each other. The purple humanoid looked up from the old man’s corpse.
“Steven. You look much different with a whelp at your side.” The alien eyed Terrance distastefully. BiF smiled.
“And you look much different without a collar, seeing as you were Jorhg’s bitch.” Steven retorted nonchalantly. Hans growled dissaprovingly, baring his sharp shark-like teeth.
“Knowing you, you want something,” Hans glared at the still grinning BiF. “So spit it out.”
BiF eyed the robots to the side of Hans hungrily. “Well, I’d love to take those robots off your hands.


The purple and silver one spoke “My name is OCP-390, but my master called me ‘Malware.’

Friday, September 19, 2014

Thursday, July 24, 2014

The River Monologue

Hello! Sorry it has been a while since my last post :( But I hopefully will make it up to you with some more pieces!

Thank you for your support! Your advice is very helpful, and I really appreciate it! :D I just don't know how to respond directly to comments, but please see that your comments are beneficial and impactful!

Anyhow, here it is! I got inspiration from Passenger's "Feather on The Clyde" It is a beautiful song. Check it out! :)


It is the spot, I think, that makes me calm. Away from cars, away from empty sympathy, away from the smell of cleanliness. Rather than bright LEDs, I can see the where night drains the color of day. Rather than sympathy, nature knows what it’s like to suffer pollution. So we sit in a sense of mutual acceptance. In content silence. Rather than the smell of sanitation, I smell earth. No anxious hands clicking pens, no repugnant beeps of machines, no needles or radiation treatments. No… Just the sound of cicadas and the distance that the river bank has put between me and the troubles of the world

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Westward Movement Song!

Hey! :D This is a song I made last year for history class regarding Manifest Destiny. Needless to say, it was a fun lesson!




Well, have you heard the wheels a’turnin’?
Have you heard the horses bray?
Have you set a boot,
Just for a hoot,
On the red, red western clay?

The West is the best and the place to be,
Where the Sun always shines,
And the men are free!
Where bountiful wealth is always found,
Just take what you need from the gold-filled ground!

So saddle up on your stallion,
Pack some boots and beans!
Take some knives,
Your kids and wives,
And anything you need!

The trail, it starts in Oregan,
Or in sunny Santa Fe!
And the Mexicans out there on the trail,
Will offer good, fine trade!

Beware of the bears and the predators,
As they might just make a meal,
Of you while you sleep,
They’ll softly creep,
And eat anything they kill!

There’s plenty of plants found on the way!
Berries of blue and pink and gray.
But I think that it should be said that some of those plants
Will kill ya dead!


So gather your pals,
Ask them to see,
The shining new land

For you and me,

The Hound and The Cat

Hello! :D Yes, I know: It is a terrible name. This is something I came up with last year in December. Enjoy! :)




          There once was a knight, bold and gallant. His talents exceeded those of his fellows and because of his capabilities, and the quality of which he performed his tasks, the young man became quite smug and vain. He would often gloat of his physique and agility and endurance and almost every quality he possessed to the fellow villagers of the town he occupied. Word carried of him fast on the wind, and his deeds were well known beyond vicinity of the town.
          This drew plenty of attention to him, inevitably, some quite positive. Others who were attentive to him, however, did not always harbor admiration for the knight. Rather, they saw a challenge. Rather, they saw a devious opportunity.
          One day, a group of thugs approached the town. They wielded weapons large, cumbersome, and blunt with expressions to match. Aside from their colossal hammers, small daggers as sharp as a bramble were nestled by their belts. Even sharper yet were the eyes of the massive men. Varying from grizzled to gruff, from sneering to seething, the men hobbled down to the pub, where gossip poured as freely as drink.
          They knew what they sought, and they knew where to expect him to be. As soon as the pub door swung open, the ambience of the outside world was drowned by the tavern’s jolly music and the sound of intoxicated chortling. The group of chaps strode over to the barkeep, receiving several dirty and curious looks. One of the Thugs had a glint in his eye as it caught sight of a man adorned in silver armor, jesting and complimenting himself.
          With an exchange of crooked smiles and gnarled teeth, the men lumbered towards the boisterous knight.
          The knight could hardly notice the towering figure looming over the crowd around him. Perched upon his barstool with a glittering, pearl-like smile, the knight gleamed amongst the commoners that were infatuated with him and his stories. At the conclusion of his tale, after a wave of praise and murmurs of astonishment, the knight dismissed the scraggly folk and was granted a pint of ale on the house.
          Sitting across from him was the leader of the menacing mercenaries. He called himself Thag the Horrible. The knight sat scouring the scene, occasionally raising his mug to his lips. Thag hunched over the maple bar top. With a thick, calloused hand Thag motioned the bartender to serve up a drink. The bartender faked a courteous grin though his eyes betrayed his wariness and scuffled off to make his pint.
          Thag’s good eye wandered over to the knight, a smile similar to a waxing moon began to form on his features. His tan, scarred skin only intensified his ominous appearance, as did the dangerous glint in his sea-green eyes that looked as though they desired to drown the knight.
          The knight caught his glare, and shifted in his seat in a mixture of haughtiness and edginess. Thag simply smirked, craning his head towards the bartender, who placed a foaming pint of the strongest ale available in front of him. Giving a nod of appreciation, Thag slid the pewter mug to his right hand, sipping the heady brew, nursing it while preparing his fighting sense.
          The knight glanced back at the man. A surge of intimidation coursed through the knight against his volition. He may have had a sturdier set of armor, crafted of fine delicately carved silver, but in the back of his mind the knight doubted he could even slice through the man’s bare skin should a conflict arise.
Thag, only attired in commoner’s clothing and leather pauldrons and greaves, still looked as though his defenses were impenetrable. His eye rested back on the knight, and he cocked a brow as if he were oblivious to the knight’s fear. Thag, with a conceited grin, winked at him tauntingly.
The knight grimaced, narrowing his eyes at the display from the burly man. His fingers rapped on the bar top with boiling emotions, and his jaw clenched. The knight’s stomach twisted indignantly. Turning his attention back to his glass and gingerly sipping his drink, the knight tried to regain his composure, not willing to show his discomfort. It would shame him and his pride.
Thag saw that his attempts were successful, guzzled the contents of his cup until no more liquid sloshed in mug, and slammed it down with an abrupt clatter. Patrons nearby turned to investigate the source of the sound. Upon seeing the haggard sight of the thug, they quickly turned away in alarm.
Realizing no matter how much he provoked the knight, he would remain sitting quietly in his chair, Thag leaned in to address the young man. Sick of playing coy, Thag spoke to the man in his thick, husky accent, the sound of which would make the toughest man tremble ever so slightly.
“ ‘Ey you. Lad in the fancy garb, ‘ere. Wot are ye doin’ to make ‘ourself them riches you obviously got?” His voice was kind, almost mockingly so, as the knight turned to him with disdain.
“I earned my glitters by defending this charming town, sir.” Thag smirked at this, admiring his feistiness. The knight sniffed, raising his chin.
“The Governor of this town, as a matter of fact, congratulated me personally and assigned me to go about slaying vermin.” The knight spat the last word harshly, as if he was indirectly referring to Thag. The mercenary chuckled, pawing at the stubble on his throat.
“Well, congrats then, my friend! The name’s Thag. I would be delighted to ‘ear of your name, considering you are an ‘ero and whatnot.” With a bicep wider than the knight’s thigh and an outstretched meaty palm, Thag presented a greeting. The knight sneered with disgust and looked back to Thag’s thick face.
“Sir Fredrick Braun.” Thag shrugged at the lack of a handshake but quaintly smiled anyhow. At least he had gotten a name, right?
“Well, then, Sir Freddy,” Fredrick cringed at the sound of the abbreviation. “I ‘ave a request for ya. You see, me and me mates keep ‘earing that you got an ego as big as your pockets. Now, we don’t want anyfing to do with ‘armin’ ya, understand? But we got a request from our boss tellin’ us ‘at we be’er take ya back with us. It insures good pay and good fame. But listen ‘ere, laddie. Normally I wouldn’t give two lashes ‘bout killin’ a man if it meant me gettin’ paid. But with your supposed ‘skill’, I think we could find use for ya in our posse.”
Fredrick shook slightly with apprehension. Thag leaned in closer, his breath reeking of alcohol and power.
“Ya see, I’m willin’ to make a bet wif you. If ya think you could win, we’ll let ya walk free. If not, there are grea’er things at stake than your life.” Fredrick resisted the urge to gulp down the knot forming in his throat. Nevertheless, his pride resisted the attempts to scare him, and he looked the thug dead in the eye.
“What are the consequences?” Thag’s mouth curved up at the corners approvingly.
“You win, like I mentioned, an’ you’ll be able to stride around at yer own leisure. If I win, though,” Thag licked his lips with delight. “I get to take wha’ever I want from ‘ere. That includes you, mate.”
This time, Fredrick made no attempt to suppress an audible gulp. But his confidence outweighed his logic, and before he could stop himself, the words slipped from his tongue.
“Consider it a deal.” Thag’s eyes did not widen, to Fredrick’s surprise, but merely met his amber irises with a satisfied gaze. A giant paw clasped Fredrick on the back with bruising force as Thag gave a throaty laugh.
Fredrick, for once, felt as though he made a flawed decision.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
After the conversation between the knight and the mercenary ceased, Thag rose from his seat and stretched his tendons. Galumphing towards the exit, he parted the large, brass doors to meet his group standing in the middle of the stone walkway. Evening had begun to fall, casting a pink hue on all of their faces.
Most of the men, mainly the younger, newer members of the group, appeared bored and stagnant. The more experienced members were occupying their time by sharpening their blades, practicing their parrying with a partner, or simply chatting. The eldest of all, Kidle, was napping against one of the wooden beams holding up the tavern overhang.
An attendant of the bar went to illuminate the lanterns hanging by the door. When his eyes met Thag, he quickly stumbled away, tripping over his own heels. Thag merely snorted and approached his gang.
Their eyes lit up instantly, and all the men gathered around. Eager to earn a handsome sum of gold, many questions flew from excited mouths. Thag chuckled. It’s like my wolfhounds when I get home.
Thag raised a hand, silencing them all within a matter of a minute. He, with cheer and positivity, then relayed the news.
“Listen up, dogs! We ‘ave our man in the midst of an agreement! Problem is, we need to figure out somethin’ that he’ll never win against us at! You lot ‘ave any ideas?” The men scratched their heads, having only seen the man for a few seconds before being dismissed outside.
From the crowd, a voice piped up. “Is he strong?” Thag nodded curtly.
“Slightly. He’s strong, but he’s lean strong. Like a cat, almost, ya know?” The men nodded, trying to resume their quest to find a weakness.
Another voice, this one more tentative, arose from the group. “Ummm…Oh! We’re strong, right fellas?” Most approved, beating their chests as if to prove and acknowledge it. “Alright…Then-uh-what if w-we challenge him to somethin’ like…Oh, I don’t know-a disc throwing contest?”
Some of the men growled in disapproval, saying that discus was a sport for posh weaklings. But at that moment, Thag’s eyes lit up.
“That’s brilliant, lad!” He flashed a smile to the boy, who nervously grinned back in gratitude. The crowd turned to Thag, blatantly bewildered.
“I-It is?” You could see the gears churning in Thag’s head, and he formulated his plan.
“Yeah, it is! Wot if, mates, we go ahead and challenge him to, not a discus contest, but an ‘ammer throwing contest!” At the mentioning of hammers, the men began to grow enthusiastic. A handful of the thugs cheered at the plan, ecstatic for the mounds of gold that awaited them.
Thag beamed eager to test the water of their new plan. “Alright, it’s settled ‘en!”
“Wait a second, Thag!” Exclaimed a raspy, high-pitched voice. “Does the lad know the challenge?” Thag grinned widely, the word ‘sly’ plastered on his features.
“Ah, but ‘at’s the thing, Horace! He already agreed!” The mercenaries howled with laughter at the knight’s misfortune and haste. The sudden guffawing caused Kidle to wake with a start and catch his long, white beard on the splintery post he rested on.
“What in blasphemy?!” He cried, causing the mercenaries to roar even harder with laughter. The old man rambled at them, as usual, claiming the silliest of things like how the pole was talking to him and they were rudely interrupting their telepathic conversation.
Even the grumpy thugs smiled despite themselves. That is until they were vacated from the property by an angry and sleepy housewife who lived nearby.
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The gold glittering sun had risen to stream through the stained windows of Fredrick’s bedroom. Fredrick himself, however, had risen hours before, pacing and perspiring with anxiety to the dilemma before him. His pride masked it as training his nerves for the challenge ahead, but the young knight’s subconscious acknowledged it as something else.
Fredrick, he found to his own agony, was afraid.
In all his life, from slaying a variety of bandits and vagabonds and other assortments of criminals, never once had Fredrick batted an eye. He would lash them into submission and drag them to the dungeons, further improving the validity that he was the savior of the town. But even just one look at the coarse, granular Thag…
Fredrick growled to himself, trying an abysmal attempt at composing his fear. Remember all the ballads the folks sing in your honor! His head shouted in encouragement. You are their savior. You are the chosen stock of hero, grade A, so rich in ability your blood is pure gold! Remember! Fredrick sighed in exasperation.
Padding out of his room, Fredrick craned his head to see the home he had netted. He remembered that time, festering and burning like an old leaf caught in the sun, when he had first gotten this homestead.
Fredrick grinned to himself, critiquing the elaborate wooden depictions of his own deeds so carefully etched in the living room by the grateful carpenters and woodworkers who he had assisted. His fingertips drifted over the flowered, fruited borders on the stone walls. It was the work of grateful masons, chipping in (literally) to repay his benevolent acts.
Drifting over to the musky scented cellars, Fredrick lowered his head to avoid a calamity of possible unconsciousness and goose eggs on his crown. After all, it had happened many a time before, the knight reminded himself with embarrassment,
Browsing the wines in the dusty hollow below, Fredrick saw multiple that he had been rewarded with not even a week ago. The bottles varied from volume and design, color and shine, and the accumulating films of dust forming on them. Each had a story, an adventure. That is what Fredrick admired so much about them, and himself.
Fredrick owned dozens and dozens of items, hallowed by the friar and gilded of their craft by capable hands. Every single one was due to his own charities. A familiar sense of pride welled within him, filling his core with warmth.
Fredrick traversed the steps leading back to the living area. Early dawn sunlight met him as he treaded back to his bedroom to exchange clothes. He wouldn’t want to venture the town in nothing but silk underclothes, he should think.
Snorting at the thought of him arresting felons in his pajamas, Fredrick pulled on some more decent and suitable threads. Once he commenced draping himself in his dark green velvet shirt, it suddenly hit him, and his gleaming smile faded.
Fredrick might just lose it all. Everything, from the house, the followers, the noble standing, the fanatics, and even his own egotism, he could potentially see it all vanish before his very eyes. He found his heart ache at the disturbing and unnerving thought.
Worse yet, Fredrick might have sold his soul, and in this case his fighting arm, to a group of rascals. Living a life of luxury is not all Fredrick might lose. He may also lose himself…
Vexed, terrified, and possibly staring a life of forced banditry in the face, Fredrick put out a prayer and proceeded through the front door of his house.
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The breeze greeted Thag as he ventured atop the hill overlooking the grassy knolls outside the town. He inhaled, reveling in the merry scene and the lukewarm sun lathering his skin.
Thag’s feet found themselves pushing forward, tramping westward toward the leveled fields of emerald green. He was greeted to the awesome sight of distant glens and quagmires and streams. The shimmering rivers were like veins, all flowing back to the heart of the lake nearby. Thag grinned.
It was bad enough for poor Fredrick that he would have to be condemned to a life of serving Thag, let alone being shamed in his gorgeous homeland. Thag almost pitied the man. His scarred, lifeless eye as well as his hungry sea-green one wandered over the clearing, devouring the image before him. All his in a matter of minutes…
That is of the lily-livered knight in shinin’ armor shows up. Thag thought to himself, snorting while twitchy movements compensated for his impatience. The dappled sun fell through the trees not thirty feet away from the clearing and the hills, casting a silhouette on the tall oaks. Thag turned to the shadow with raised brows, not expecting and not believing what he saw.
A tired, thickly built fellow clad in the mercenary group’s symbols was making his way over with a more petite, shorter man squirming in his grasp. The scraggly bearded man plucked the knight up by the arm, thrusting the latter of the two towards Thag.
Without his noble fittings, Thag had hardly recognized him. A flustered Fredrick was currently ranting to the large thug, pushing himself up to his feet while wiping away at the dirt on his pants.
“Do you call that courtesy?! First you dare to put your filthy hands on me whilst you invade my property, uninvited might I add, and then you drag me out into the wilderness without even engaging in civilized conversation-!” Thag stifled a laugh, biting his bottom lip so that it almost bled. The other mercenary gave a teasing glare before childishly sticking his tongue out. Meanwhile, Fredrick continued to list his frustrations.
“-not to mention that such your resinous oaf hands had violated my personal space without minimal consideration for my feelings! I am appalled at your misconduct! Why, I should smite you now and save some air for decent individuals to breathe!” Fredrick walked right up to the man, blaring at him with obvious frustration.
“And you, sir, have still not told me what you hauled me out here for! No, no, you just assume I wouldn’t want to know, is that it?! That I-“ The thug swung a mighty hand at his chest and pushed him to his bottom.
Thag could not hold in his laughter. He split the air with barks of joy, to the extent where his complexion turned a shade of violet for a few moments. Fredrick rotated his torso to see him, taken aback by his presence.
The other man rolled his eyes, but was grinning with contentment. Fredrick got up once more, not bothering to dust his trousers. He glared daggers at the two, his face flushed with humiliation.
“Finally some’in actually shut ‘im up!” Warbled the fellow thug at the relieving revelation. Fredrick drew back his lip in a crossbreed between a snarl and a pout. This caused Thag to hoot louder, boisterous booming frightening a deer paces away in the forests.

With crossed arms and an averted gaze, Fredrick steamed silently and awaited a