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Steel and Starlight

I walk up to the gate. The darkness peals away as I step into the projector’s glow. The guards notice me. This area is already meant to be accessible only to personnel. I breathe in slowly. They point their rifles at me. The mechanical elements slide and click as their weapons are armed. The First yells a warning, the Second takes aim. I keep walking.

Focus.

The Second fires a bullet. It easily penetrates through my jacket and tee-shirt, but bounces off my metal skin, now visible through the bullet hole. I keep walking towards them, unharmed. The guns are lowered. The two men share a moment of surprise, confusion, quickly followed by panic. Another warning, though now, the guard’s voice is shaking, unsure. I take another step. Their eyes widen as they realize who I am, what I am. I stop, planting my feet firmly into the ground. They point their deadly tools towards me once again, barrel points trembling.

Ignition.

I take my hands out of my pockets and quickly cross them in front of me in an X shape. Moments before the rifles spit their deadly fire, I turn all of my skin to metal. The two guards are now but scared children. They empty their clips on me, tearing through my sleeves, blowing my hood off of my head, and dotting my jean’s fabric with holes. Muzzle flare illuminates the night, synchronized with the crack of the guns. Compressed bullets sing and chime in symphony as they fall around me.

Void.

Her face surfaces into my consciousness. Her laugh echoes in my ear. A spark of anger resonates through my body. I push it aside. Emotions aren’t useful right now. I grow small, elongated fragments out of my arms. Projectiles. Sharp. Deadly. In front of me the guards are fumbling with their guns, trying to reload them. They are clearly inexperienced. New. Young. Guilt whispers to me. I push it aside, just as I did the anger.

Alone

Time slows to a stop. I swing my arms outwards. At the peak of the swing, I detach the shards from my metal skin. They hurl through the air like deadly feathers, reflecting the projector’s lights like a Disco ball at an old fashion club. Instantly they connect with the bodies of the two men. They fall backwards as the momentum of the shards converges into their bodies. Their weapons clatter across the concrete. I walk up to and then past them. They are littered with shards. A dark pool of blood is quickly spreading around the bodies. Their expression is that of a frozen scream, terrified and lonely.

I push pity aside with the rest. Emotions aren’t useful right now.

………………MetalHEART//ReleaseEMOTION:……….princessisinanothercastle…………dots……………………

It’s been a whole year since I last submitted to the Speakeasy! I’ve seen new faces and familiar ones while glancing around the site a few days ago, and it’s all very exciting. I’m also trying a lot of new things with this particular piece. I’m curious to see how it came through. Comments, criticism and feedback is much appreciated. I’ve experienced with these characters before. If you so wish, feel free to read more here and here.

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Posted by on 1 September 2015 in Dragonspark, Speakeasy

 

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DS- Sand, Dust, and Blood

The night was plagued by the orange glow of the sodium vapour lamps. The spots of light illuminated a street contained between two compounds. The rammed earth walls seemed brittle. Garbage was piled up in a corner. The cloudy sky concealed the stars. A thin layer of sand and dust coated the dirt street, making his footsteps silent. The young man wandering through the dark alleyway seemed out of place. He was a young European man wearing an expensive Italian suit, walking quietly in one of Morocco’s poorest neighbourhoods.

If it was brighter, or if he stepped directly under a lamppost, which he purposefully avoided, one could have seen the anger concealed beneath his tense features, and the hard, piercing look of his eye. This was the face of a man whom had been betrayed for one too many time. He was sick and tired of the false promises, the worthless vows of protection, and the hypocritical speeches that, in the end, turned out to be driven by self-interest. Since childhood, he’d been chased by the shadows. Everywhere he had sought protection, those he met either used him as a tool for their own agenda, or tried to turn him in to those who wanted him in their hands.

He was sick of being seen for what he was and not who he was.

He was interrupted in his inner ranting by whispers from behind. He turned around quickly, only to find five dark figures lined up in the dark street. Some were carrying led pipes and one had a baseball bat. “Petty thugs”, he spat. The five men were nervously chatting amongst themselves. He recognised the word “money” and “stranger” amongst the muffled voices. They were going to mug him.

The young man sighed.  The thugs were surrounding him, and proceeded to take off his jacket. He wasn’t planning on handing it over, though.

He threw the suit jacket towards the wall on one side of the street. He immediately stretched his palm out towards the jacket. A metallic sound was heard, and the jacket was instantly pegged to the wall by a dark, crystal-like shape.

Unaware of what had just happened, one of the man holding a led pipe charged him, yelling. The young man spun around and thrust his hand into his assailant’s stomach. Instead of a muffled thud, the distinct sound of metal cutting through flesh arose from the man’s stomach. The man’s arms went limp, and the led pipe fell with a thud. The young man pulled his arm out. Where his hand was, there was now an oblong, xiphoid shape, a prolongation of his arm, orange light running down it with a deadly metallic wetness.

The man fell to the floor, dead, a dark pool of liquid spreading around the corpse. The four remaining thugs were momentarily perplexed, and the man used that to his advantage. The pent-up rage within him needed a blood-bath. The expensive leather in his shoes cracked as huge metallic talons pierced them, immediately digging into the ground, giving the man leverage. He burst onto one of the remaining assailants, burrowing his sword arm into his chest, pegging him against the wall opposite to his jacket. The hunter had become the prey.

He jumped from the wall and flew across the street, turning his other arm into a deadly tool identical to the first, and spread his lethal limbs like wings as his trajectory brought him between two of the remaining thugs.

Having just witnessed his four friends get cut down, the last of the muggers turned tail, dropped his led pipe, and ran away from the European man, his legs powered by terror and adrenaline. After a few moments, his curiosity got the better of him. He looked over his shoulder. The last thing he saw was the blurry outline of a metallic shard whistling straight towards him at subsonic speed, before it brutally vaporised his skull.

…………DESERT::SAND………………..MUTANT//BLOOD………………………………………………………………………..

Hey guys! I don’t post often any more, and this one is too long for the Speakeasy (Is it even called that now?) so I hope the few of you that catch it enjoy it. This is another vignette into a plot line I’m working on for my own enjoyment, but its place is up here with the great majority of my other pieces. There is already a vignette from this storyline on this blog right up here, which is chronologically later than this one in the overall storyline. Comments appreciated!

 
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Posted by on 3 November 2014 in Dragonspark

 

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DS- Tavern Boy

We shall first focus on the young, skinny man, whose dream to become a valiant solider seemed to float away from him, replaced by the life of a tavern boy. On the surface of things, he seemed crushed, his very soul torn apart by disillusion. Nevertheless, deep within his heart, his resolve was unbroken, and perhaps strengthened by this extra challenge. He decided to work hard, and to dedicate every waking hour to doing his job correctly, and quickly. His boss, a large, bearded fellow, was so pleased he gave him a raise, only strengthening the young man’s will. Day by day, he watched as his body grew stronger due to the hard work. Eventually, it matched the strength his heart had once harboured… However, he no longer dreamed of adventure and romantic war at night.

Indeed, his heart had grown into this hard, yet very satisfactory life of tavern worker. He had grown fond of the tavern owner, and had gotten used to the cosy, quaint establishment. He had made good friends throughout the neighbourhood and with the regular customers. He was too attached to the old town to abandon those he lived with now, only to pursue his dreams of conquest and gunpowder. When drafting season came around, he was enjoying a day off, playing with young people his age, unaware of the clean uniforms and the oiled mechanics of the weapons waiting for courageous souls to join them in faraway conflicts. Really, his only concern that day was the beautiful blond hair of a woman he hadn’t seen before, and eager to go up and speak to her, to ask her name, and to tell her the funny anecdotes of the Tavern’s customers.

…………………………..///………….LIFE:::GIVEROFHOPE./……………..WAR:::GIVEROFDEATH///…………………

First post in a while… I’ve been busy. With a little luck, I’ll manage to turn something in for this Week’s Speakeasy, but I’m not making any promises. This is the second piece in a project/series we just started, in which we each take turns writing a part. First part right here. Comments and thoughts much appreciated!

The ball’s in your field now, BW!

Next part right here!

 
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Posted by on 14 September 2014 in Dragonspark, Epic Co-written Story

 

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DS YW177- Shadow in the Snow

He waited for an hour, his hooded ear against the dusty wood. Around him, the abandoned Soviet library lay, filled with fragile bookshelves and still stacks of frozen paper, a solid block of concrete abandoned with many others in the middle of Siberia, an uncharted remnant of a dark era. The cold air sent shivers through his bones, shaking some of the frost off of his hair and teenage scruff. He held his trusted 9mm handgun tightly in his hand, a long silencer attached to the barrel. The bulletproof vest under the three layers of Alpine clothing wasn’t exactly comfy, and his patience was running out.

Suddenly, the heavy steel doors were thrown open, the loud metallic clang followed by heavy Russian voices. He grabbed his radio. “Delta here. The rat is in the den. Eagle clear to take-off,” he whispered. Deep breath. He checked his watch. Five minutes ‘till Eagle gets here.

A few seconds later, the metallic click of a briefcase hitting the ground resonated through the library. That’s the signal he was waiting for. Several months of investigation, all for that sound. He shut his eyes tightly, grabbed the detonator on the ground besides him, and squeezed the trigger…

… Thus detonating the intricate network of flash bangs laid throughout the library for maximum effect. Straight after the initial flash, he ran out of his cover, gun in hand, quickly spotting the eight people in the room, and sprinting towards the man with the briefcase handcuffed to his wrist, while placing two precise shots in the skulls of the men carrying the assault rifles. His close combat reflexes basically took over for the next seconds.

He threw a kick into the briefcase carrier’s bodyguard while reaching for the knife strapped to the back of his belt, tipping the still dazzled man onto the hard floor. He promptly thrust the cold steel into his primary target’s throat, and fired a bullet at the small chain to free the briefcase from the man’s arm. As soon as he held the precious cargo, he sprinted towards the heavy door. Two of the men had recovered from the flash bang, and had already taken aim at the dark figure scurrying through the bookshelves. The muzzle flashes illuminated flying sheets of paper, thrown into the air by the bullets flying past his chest. Too close for comfort.

He continued his sprint through the heavy doors, the floor alive with sparks from bullet impacts. The chase continued through the obscure, concrete halls of the Soviet complex. Having not prepared to be ambushed, the men hadn’t anticipated to give chase, and quickly found themselves isolated in the dark.

He knew this, and hid behind a corner, quietly catching his breath, waiting for the predator to become the prey, drawing the dagger once again form his belt. As soon as the first man appeared, he stabbed the blade into his temple, leaving the weapon in the falling corpse. Without waiting for his accomplice to recover from the unexpected attack, he ran towards the nearest window, and broke through the already fractured glass, falling into the crunchy snow bellow.

Quickly rising up from his fall, he ran out towards the edge of the abandoned town, putting the library’s entrance to his back. Hearing the door open, he stopped and turned around, hoping the dark would conceal his silhouette, only to find a well-aimed bullet grazing his right shoulder.

“Hands in the air!” One of the four men yelled at him in Russian. He complied, checking the time on his watch in doing so. It had been exactly 5min. He smiled inwardly. The man had started to ask who he was working for, but was interrupted mid-sentence by a blinding light from above, quickly followed by the chopping sound of rotors, which had until now been overpowered by the whistling wind.

As he resumed his escape, disappearing into the night, he heard the radio on his chest burst to life. “Eagle has landed. Over!” Despite himself, a smug grin appeared on his face. Even if he would get no credit in the official report, even if his jobs required him to take lives, satisfaction resonated throughout his being.

Now all that was left was a trek through the windy Siberian tundra to get to his extraction point…

………………………OPERATION//HAILstorm//…………………………………//GRIMREAPERintheSNOW//…………

Had to stay up very late at night to complete this one… Anyway, another spy story for this week. Hope you enjoyed. Comments appreciated!

 
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Posted by on 2 September 2014 in Dragonspark, Speakeasy

 

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YeahWrite Summer 2014- Metal and Rain

The air around me was cold, yet I didn’t feel it. All I felt was fear. Fear, and the adrenaline pulsing throughout my body. I was out of breath. My shoes fell heavily onto the floor as I ran, accompanied by a cold, watery sound as they hit the wet pavement. He was hurrying me along, his hand in mine, his face invisible in the dark night, my sight further weakened by the heavy rainfall.

Through the constant sound of rain hitting ground, an engine, a big one, roared somewhere behind. He spat a cuss and ran faster. Just as my resolve wavered, headlights illuminated the street from behind, causing another pulse of adrenaline through my body.

Hearing the engine get dangerously close, he turned around, grabbed me, and leaped in a perpendicular alleyway. Too late. Being in front of him, I got through safely, but the side view mirror exploded against his left shoulder as the Hummer drove by, projecting the two of us to the ground.

After a few moments, I gathered the courage to stand up. Astonished, I found him standing above me, hand extended towards me. His shoulder showed no sign of damage. However, his jacket seemed to reflect light like the wet armor of a knight where the car had hit him. Failing to puzzle out the situation, I began to ask 100 questions at once. “How did you…. The car… Your shoulder… Are you OK?” Without a word, he pulled me up, and nudged me behind him. Just as he turned to face the alley, familiar headlights blinded us. Doors were opened and shut. Mechanical clicks echoed off the walls of the narrow alley. Guns.

Abruptly, the cold hit me. I was suddenly aware of being drenched to the bone. I fought the rising anxiety and tried to keep a cool head. We didn’t do anything wrong! What do these people want with us? This HAS to be a misunderstanding! Since when is going to the cinema a crime? Are these people even part of the police? Yes, they had gyros at the beginning. Why did he run away? What’s going on here??

My puzzled thoughts were interrupted by a booming voice ahead. “Alright, Shape-shifter, you’re coming with us. Come peacefully, and I can guarantee your safety, and that of the Telepath as well!”

Did he just call him a shape-shifter? Did he just call me a telepath?

I was about to voice my interrogations when he disappeared in a blur. The headlights went out, accompanied by a noise of shattering glass. It was instantly followed by the whistle of air flowing at high speed, and something that sounded like a knife cutting through meat. I ducked and closed my eyes instinctively. A moan of pain and a blind gunshot soon gave way to more brief whistles. I opened my eyes to find a silhouette landing on the hood of the car, crumpling the thin metal, triggering the alarm.

The orange blinkers lit up three figures collapsed on the ground, each with a rifle next to them, the metal shining in the night. I instantly noticed the eerie spike poking out of each body. It had the same metallic texture as the firearm. Pools of dark liquid were spreading around each cadaver, mingling with the pouring rain.

Frightened, I turned my attention to the car. I recognised his slender frame, yet…. Something was off. He stepped down from the hood and calmly walked towards me. That’s when I noticed the oversized talons on his feet, and the long, xiphoid shapes that prolonged his arms. They all had the same metallic texture as the spikes in the bodies, and his shoulder which, as it turns out, was his skin showing through a gaping hole in the fabric of his jacket, torn by the impact. He stopped perhaps a meter in front of me, avoiding my gaze, his expression nervous, almost tense.

His feet turned back to normal and the long blades gave way to five fingers that slowly lost their initial metallic texture. He began to speak, his voice hesitant, barely loud enough to overpower the falling rain.

“I didn’t plan on telling you until I knew you a little better but…” He sighed deeply and looked straight at me. “I’m not what you think I am. Fact is, you aren’t what you think you are.” He pointed towards the car. “However, these people know, and they’re very interested in us…”

::……..SHAPE//percieved……………PURPOSE//assigned………….DETERMINATION//stateofmind………::

 

 

 
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Posted by on 17 August 2014 in Dragonspark, Speakeasy

 

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YeahWrite Summer 2014- Crack in the window

The green bar completes its journey across the monitor. The screen illuminates the room, the only other source of light being the thin rays that filter through the paper blinds. Outside, the sun is setting. Despite the relatively cool air, I am sweating. The air is tense. My muscles ache from exhaustion. I control my breathing to be as quiet as possible, knowing it is useless. Security will be here soon. The comforting pressure of a 9mm gun on my left rib helps me to keep a cool head. A strange thought pierces the surface of my mental stream: How many 16 year olds have infiltrated tight security compounds over the course of espionage’s relatively short history?

Hurried steps echo in the corridor. A short moment of silence is interrupted by the mechanical click of a loaded firearm. A nervous voice is muffled by the wooden door, the crack of a radio following the stereotypical “Over!” A message of completion appears on the screen before me. The data transfer is over

.
Just in time…

I snatch the USB key from the computer and stuff it in the inner pocket of my suit. The door explodes behind me as I burst into a sprint. The blast of a shotgun erupts from behind. I hear the burning metal pellets whistle by my skull as they crash into the window before me, cracking it. My job thus made easier by my pursuers, I dive elbow first into the glass obstacle, and fall through it. The still, artificially fresh air of the office gives way to the dry summer wind. Thirty floors of empty air separate my falling body from the hot pavement.

After a few seconds, I pull the strap hidden under my suit, releasing a parachute camouflaged within. My velocity is reduced abruptly. Overhead, voices shout in anger. I hear the explosions of a familiar shotgun crack through the evening sky. A quick glimpse downwards allows me to estimate to about 15 seconds the remainder of my fall. I take my small gun from its holster and quickly shift my weight forwards, making the parachute dip back. My line of sight now clear, I aim the deadly tool up towards my assailants, and pull the trigger. The recoil of the gun doesn’t help my muscular exhaustion in any way. One of the men’s silhouette tumbles back into the office, a scream of pain accompanying his fall. Once the distance between my feet and the pavement is reduced to about 6 feet, I cut the strings of my parachute and let myself fall to the ground.

A Porsche 911GT3 pulls up, the new girl, Sam, at the wheel. “Where on earth did you find THAT!?” I ask, a little startled by the beautiful German supercar. “Does it really matter? Get in here now!” She replies, her voice barely understandable because of the engine’s steady purr and her heavy Russian accent. I collapse onto the passenger seat, exhausted, and let the muffled roar of the engine drift me away from reality, and into sleep, as Sam’s expert driving gets us far away from any possibility of pursuit.

Man, who knew being a spy was so tiring? They forgot to mention that in James Bond…

…………………………………….ISPY//w//..MYLITTLEEYES……………………………………………………

Stereotypical spy story for this week, also the sequel to this post. I decided to write in present tense this week, as a sort of experiment. And sorry for letting my petrol-head ways show in this post, but if you’re going to escape, might as well do it in style right? Consider yourself lucky. I could have talked about the 3.7L, 475 break horse power V6 in AGONIZING detail for anyone who’s not into that stuff… But I held it all in. That’s dedication right there!

 
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Posted by on 28 July 2014 in Dragonspark, Speakeasy

 

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Mornings

BEEP BEEP-Click
A trained arm shoots out from under the covers to stop the noise only to slither back under again to the warmth. After two minutes of mustering up courage a reluctant ungraceful Venus emerges from a sea of covers mumbling and grumbling and no-sense-making. Groggily climbing down the ladder of its high bed the creature wondered why it even got up sometimes. Mainly because it was easier that way: do what you’re told, no complications. It snorted, like that was easy. Pffft there were always things it did wrong, no matter how hard it tried it could never be perfect. It held a grudge against Perfect anyway. It was always quick to disregard what the others called “fashion”; it had, at a young age, got fed up with all the shenanigans and falsehood of fitting in and it held in contempt those who changed or pretended to conform to society. Maybe because they didn’t accept who they were, maybe because they had friends and sometimes it was a bit jealous of them. Munching cereals as it defrosted a piece of bread it went through a thought cycle similar to every other day though it didn’t often think the exact same thought twice. It sang as it got ready and being late, left like a cannonball, to put it in the words of its parents. It was always like this, it would run a little then walk, having caught up its lateness. Wondering if and what it had forgotten that day. It often found a positive answer although lately less so. Maybe it was getting used to routine after years. That was the story of its life. Running late. It had a reputation to maintain. Also it didn’t care much for punctuality and hated being early. That was its unsocial side. It actually had three main personalities, when it talked to itself: Stupid, also Idiot, doesn’t say much but is often insulted, Talky, the one who does most the thinking/talking to itself, it insults Stupid, thinks about everything and nothing and thinks cool punch lines for no apparent reasons that said creature will probably never find reason enough to say, it’s also the one that does all the ramblings, then there’s Skeptical who questions everything and can come to ask things ranging from stupid to existential. After that there would be Thoughty who overthinks things, Silly who is (you guessed it) silly, Annoying who annoys and Mad who thinks it might be mad and likes to imagine what would happen. Among others.
And life goes on…

 
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Posted by on 18 June 2014 in Banzaï

 

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