My lovely Hogmanay

Hello friends. 

 

It’s been a while since I put one of these up. You know how it is, work, work, work, and- oh yeah I had that winter break…. guess I don’t have an excuse at all then…

Any way thought I would give you an update on life and stuffs.

Winter is lovely. It’s amazing and happy and sad and all sorts of great food and by god I need to get to the gym or something because I have had too much everything. Christmas was great, my lovely parents who tell me each year they aren’t going to spend a lot on me spent a lot on me. 

I had myself some new diving gear, including my own wet-suit and dive computer. As well as an assortment of video games (my darling girlfriend hasn’t seen me in a while due to her giving me fallout 4) and a stocking full of beer. 

So I have been very happy indeed. 

And of course as many of you know, I am in Scotland and so many consider Hogmanay the big day of the season. Hogmanay or New Year’s Day is so important because of the old Gaelic traditions to give gifts to neighbours such as short bread to feed them and coal to light the year; this is also known as the first foot. So it was no surprise that all my friends hit the clubs and got really drunk, shenanigans ensue.

As for me, well I hate clubs. And I am lucky my girlfriend shares this opinion. So we went out for dinner, got picnic supplies and started watching still game. However, this is where my night got interesting.

NO NOT LIKE THAT!! Get your dirty minds out of the gutter.

We went downstairs for more supplies and sausage rolls and such. Where you dad told me I should try this Thai dip. So I did, it wasn’t my cup of tea. Especially since my throat closed up.

I have a horrible nut allergy, it doesn’t matter if you wave a jar of peanut butter in my face but if I eat the tiniest amount I go into anaphylactic shock.

The whole house was on panic mode. I was ordered to rest on the couch while an epi-pen was recovered from the medicine cabinet. Naturally I was terrified, this hasn’t happened since I was seven and found out about my condition. I protested against the epi-pen despite the breathing difficulties and I am glad my mum didn’t listen, she stabbed me in the leg and I felt instant relief. The adrenaline entered my body and my throat re opened.

When the ambulance arrived I was hooked up to a heart monitor and injected with another 500mg of adrenaline as well as some steroids. They took my blood and took me to the hospital, where I spent the night. One week later I was back to my normal self, although with a slightly sore leg. But hey I had a memorable night.

I just hope the end of the year won’t reflect the start.

In any case. I am alive and well, although carrying the epi-pen a lot more often. So I hope your holidays went as well as mine minus the hospital and that you all have a very happy new year. Good luck and thanks. 

Adam.

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The Heist on the Silver Knights Bank. Chapter 12

Wow this is getting bigger as we go. This is the next chapter in the Addy and PD story. It started here and was continued by PD here. switch between our blogs to find everything else.

The artist I have spoken with has done some sketches which look amazing. I will post the finished result when its ready, never rush an artist 😀

Also in other news I am away to the red sea for a week but when I return I look forward to see what PD comes up with. over to you!


Iron Rook

Iron Rook is an ancient fortress made of iron and silver. It is three times the size of any fortress build by man. It is also held above the ground on eight spider-like metal legs which give it mobility. But the rook hasn’t moved for eons.

Green moss and vines have grown up the legs and onto the structure itself, flora has settled in the structures details and trees obscure it from view. But this was only on the exterior. Inside the iron rook is a vessel containing many machines powered by gears and steam. It was a factory designed to build a silver knight.

In the heart of the rook a small light blinks into existence and its message received.

-EMERGENCY-EMERGENCY- TOTAL DESTRUCTION IMMANENT-SILVER KNIGHTS REMAIN STOLEN-“Kinētikos” DESTROYED-RECONSTRUCTION AND REINFORCEMENT’S REQUIRED-

The machines hissed and steamed as it processed the request before sending a signal of its own. A signal to communicate with the other silver knights.

Once there were seven but now six. It took time, days even before all knights broadcasted their signals and entered the conference.

They discussed their objectives and mission parameters in seconds and then discussed Kinētikos failure as a silver knight. Using mission logs and calculations they were able to track its actions and in doing so noticed how it had formed not one but two human companions. Both of which are clearly dead.

They also noticed how it had shut down. Lightning, the rare gift from the skies capable of giving a silver knight immense power. And it was used by the humans.

When they had finished the rook posed a question.

-do I rebuild and replace? Caution, resources are limited-

In the end the knights disagreed to Kinētikos rebirth, as the same flaws cannot be made again. Instead they would all convene in person to the rook. And form an attack strategy on the mortal races.


The Ruled Keep

The king of the ruled kingdom was no king at all. He was a small and skinny young man with pale skin and bloodshot eyes. But this was not due to any natural sickness. In fact this was due to the poison that forever runs through his veins.

The truth is he isn’t the true ruler of the ruled kingdoms. He is nothing but a pawn to his father. The one who had framed his own death and lives even now as Regent Cyanide. The young king was Cyanides bastard, born of rape and injected with a toxic serum of his father’s design before he grew ambitious.

Should he ever refuse to obey his father, Cyanide would withhold the drug that sustains the king’s life and let him die a long and painful death.

The young king walked through the secret passages tucked away in the old library and entered into the dark laboratory Cyanide calls home. As he did so he removed his crown and royal jewels, not allowing him be superior in any way.

As he entered the large room the stench of acid and poison attacked his senses. There was no natural light down here and few gas lanterns to light the way. But even still the king could see his father’s prizes. On one side of the room a man was strapped to a table with pipes forced up his nostrils and glass eyes replacing his original. On the other a small child was chained to the wall by her neck, a vial of green liquid placed just out of reach.

No doubt she would be dead next time he visits.

But one prize was only a part of a person. A small arm, probably belonging to a young boy, floated in a green liquid. Preserved for all to see.

The king walked to the centre of the room and knelt before the true throne. Cyanide sat there, tubes connecting his chest piece and regal armour to an array of machines and life support systems. He leaned forward and stared at the boy in amusement.

“Lord Father” the king seethed “I have brought news of the unruled”

“Then tell it my boy”

“The silver knight had smashed through their defences and decimated their stronghold at world’s edge. But it was destroyed in the process.”

“Good, very good.”

The king was confused and shocked at his response “I thought you wanted the knight alive lord father? The unruled where able to destroy it and live. They are more powerful than we thought. I doubt the fleet will be ready”

“This is why you are nothing but a poisoned bastard child. They destroyed one so the others will rise.” He chuckled as if he had thought of a good joke “Well since you are not as intelligent as we thought. I don’t think you should have this”

He picked a syringe containing bright blue liquid up from his arm rest.

“Haven’t I served you faithfully lord father? I have ruled in your place. Ensured that order and stability has been maintained.”

“Yes you have done that I suppose but I don’t care for the petty needs of the lesser.”

“I-I have delivered your subjects. I hand picked them to suit your needs!”

Cyanide suddenly threw the glass syringe in the air. The king desperately made a grab for it seconds before it smashed on the floor. Wasting no time he stabbed it into his leg and felt relief as the pain dulled.

“Your so easy to tease” cyanide laughed to himself. “You sometimes make me wish I still had a younger brother, but he got in my way. Be sure you never do”

“Th-thank you Lord Father!”

Cyanide merely laughed at the pitiful boy.


Worlds End

Two guards stood either side of the vault door. It was late, or early depending on the observer. Their shift was nearly over and they looked forward to some hot stew or even some Ender ale before sleeping the day away.

The first guard reagusted his rifle before his shoulders got stiff. But as he did so he saw a figure in the dark.

It was slim and agile. Clearly female but she walked with a slight limb and her arms didn’t look natural. Not that an unnatural limb is abnormal here.

“Relax. It’s just a local, lot have got hurt after that giant strode in.” the second said stifling a yawn

“Do locals normally carry drawn swords?” the first guard had unslung his rifle and readying to fire.

It was true the lady had drawn two blades from her back and started sprinting towards them.

“Dear gods! OPEN FIRE!”

The guards fired at the woman. But her blades began spinning and the bullets were knocked off course. The guards drew their own swords too late as the blades sliced through them like butter.

Schnee wasted no time and entered through the heavy steel door. It groaned as it sealed itself behind her and the smell of cleaning agents and bleach filled the air.

Lights snapped on as she ran through the corridor and into the medical bay. Inside more guards charged her, but she spun her blades to block the bullets and swords. One man tried to shoot her back with sonic cannon but Schnee ducked just in time and threw one of her swords into his forehead. The rest were easy.

Blood poured onto the white tiled floor as Schnee turned her attention to the four metal tubes attached to the wall. She went to a control panel and with a pull of a lever all the tubes opened. Each one contained a patent.

Musket lay their lifeless. A bandage covering one eye and an arm held in a metal brace. She made no noise, but Schnee wasn’t interested in her. She was nothing but a favour waiting to be repaid. A favour she didn’t need anymore.

Another held a stranger to her. A man whose eyes were replaced by mechanical lenses. Bloody bandages wrapped his chest and his face was covered in second degree burns. No doubt from her ships explosion.

A young girl laid in another. She seemed physically fine, except for the ears. They were augmented with two metal pointy ears, designed like some kind of animal. Her breathing was shallow but she would clearly live. She wasn’t interesting to Schnee either way.

The one that did interest her was the famous captain of the famous flying ship.

He wasn’t much now. His face was scarred; his metal arm was missing as well as more of his shoulder. His right leg was amputated and stunk of infection. They even put an air pipe down his throat to keep him breathing.

“Pathetic” she said aloud. “The great ship captain, at my mercy at last.”

His eye lids fluttered open. Blood shot and swollen. Is breathing became more erratic and sounded more like a wheezing pressure pipe than a man.

“Don’t worry my good captain. I’m not angry at you for leaving me for death. I would have done the same. In fact I intended to. I wanted that ship the moment you asked for a loan. I knew your mind could do it; I just didn’t want you to be clever enough to repay me. So I decided to get close to you and wait for the perfect… accident. It’s a shame you caught on first.

“But now, you have no ship, you barely have a life anymore. It’s a shame but at least I will have my revenge. I wasn’t angry you tried to kill me, no. I WAS FURIOUS!!”

Schnee raised her blade and struck down at the defenceless man. But before her killing blow hit a red dot landed on a vein in her neck and scalpel sunk in. Her artery was cut and blood shot out of the wound before she collapsed.

“Go to hell you fucking whore” a weak voice whispered.

Pry was only able to turn his head slightly to see musket. The bandage had fallen off her face revealing a glowing red eye which pointed a laser wherever she looked.

“I’m… sorry captain.” Was all she said before falling out of consciousness once more.

Before Pry followed her into oblivion he saw Peri run into the room, large crossbow in hand followed by Robotic wolf and a team of doctors.

heist on silver knoghts bank. chapter Ten

The next chapter at last.

Sorry for the delay but I hope you enjoy.Over to you PD!


The first thing Tesla said when Pry told him he needed to be gone was “Don’t be foolish”

It was the strangest thing Pry had heard. He expected to have been exiled or demanded to leave immediately. Even to have been vaporized by an angry mob of augmented humans for bringing danger to their doorstep.

Tesla grinned with intelligence “When will you lot learn that you can’t run forever? Your Pryderi gods damn Somerled!”

Pry stared at him with disbelief glad that they were speaking privately “How did you know that?”

“You don’t think it was odd did you? That someone was salvaging scrap around the king’s castle? Just as you fell into the dark cold water without an arm and half dead, I sent him and I have been following your progress ever since.”

“Why? How could you know?” a hundred other questions rushed through his head but he had no time to ask them all.

“I was there when your older brother started his reign. I was there when you father died. Hell I tried to keep him alive but you know the ways of the ruled. I couldn’t augment him and I couldn’t save him. So I turned my attention to you and watched as you became the man we needed. Its time Pry, time to take back what’s yours and end the divide between ruled and unruled. Starting with that Silver knight.”

Tesla chuckled after his speech “Besides” he continued “did you know that a silver knight’s heart can convert anything to energy. I need to get my hands on that.”

It took two days to fully fortify Worlds Edge. Now the coast was equipped and armed for anything. Its black stone walls were fortified by Fire Iron and sonic cannons longer than sea serpents were repaired, enhanced and pointed out to sea. Battery cannons lined the coast and a whole manner of weaponry emerged from the ground or came out of nowhere overnight.

Inside the walls men, women and those more mechanical than either were arming themselves with everything from muskets and rifles to sonic cannons and thermal lasers. Mechanical wolves and tigers were re-activated and prowled the coast, each one watching and sniffing any threat.

But what impressed Pry most about Worlds Edge was their air ships. It seemed they wasted no time in making their own air ships while he was away. The designs Pry created were replicated and modified.

“Two are out there now Pry.” Tesla explained as he showed him around “both the Romulus and the Nightcoat are searching for any signs of Kinetikos or its kind”

“The two wolves are impressive Tesla. But they won’t win any fights and not with a silver knight.”

“That’s why they are wolves Pry. They were built to hunt and fight when needed. If the prey proves too troubling they come back to warn the pack.”

On their first day Tesla had shown Pry and his crew the defences and their own ships. Only four were flying, two scouts and two warships, while another two cargo vessels were hidden in the dry docks. But the best was saved for last.

Hidden behind the mountains was Tesla’s own ship yard. And inside was the greatest ship ever constructed. It was ten times the size of Pry’s ship. Floors of plasma cannons and swivel guns bigger than an elephant were mounted underneath the hull. Long spikes and poles stuck out of the framework and wires covered the incomplete structure.

Tesla called it Zeus and claimed that it was the greatest thing ever built. Constructed with fire iron and Steel Wood. It was powered by three super heating engines and mobilised by several thrusters and propellers.

It was the perfect vessel to defeat the cogged giant.

The problem was that it was incomplete. Not only was the vessel still under-construction but it was impossible to provide enough power to sustain flight. Tesla did have a solution of powering it with lightning, a power source he is obsessed about harnessing, but the number of strikes required means it must always be in a lightning storm.

When asked how that could be possible he simply said “Well we’ll just make a storm”.

Tesla had shown Pry his designs for both a machine capable of manipulating the stratosphere to create a lightning storm and a way of harnessing and weaponizing that power by using metal nets and lightning rods with a series of electrical transformers.

Needless to say Pry understood none of it and Nikola said it wouldn’t be ready in the time they had.

On the third day everyone was waiting and watching the coast. A thick fog obscured their vision and no sign of it burning away. This was going to be a long day.

Pry found his crew on the Nautilus. Tesla had made excuses and vanished to his warehouse but he had outfitted the ship for battle and repaired all damages to the thrusters. If anything the ship had never been better. The automatic crossbow at the front was outfitted with explosive bolts. The port side was armed with a tesla cannon while the starboard was now equipped with a rocket launcher, Bomber hadn’t left its side and had decorated it with pink paint and ribbons. It was a mixture of cute and terrifying.

“Are you sure it was able to follow us sir?” Musket asked

“No doubt about it.”

“And is this really the right thing to do? We saw what it could do! We are putting all of these people in danger.”

“We need to finish this one way or another. We either run forever or take this thing down. I don’t think there are a better people to do it than the Edger’s.”

At the top of a nearby watch tower Gigoid stood, his eyes scanned and searched the horizon, buzzing as it focused and zoomed. His eyes were refitted with heat vision and it wasn’t long before the red lights from a ships engine were spotted.

Gigoid rang a bell and called out his report. Men and women loaded the cannons and waited for more orders. The ship was a Trimaran two of its cannons mounted on its outer hulls were pointing right at the sea wall and it was slicing through the water right for them without any indication of slowing.

But there was something behind it. Gigoid could see another, brighter light. Something hotter than the ships bellows. He focused on it and saw the vague shape of the silver knight.

“IT’S HERE!” he screamed as the first cannon shots smashed into the wall.

The wall held. It would take more than that to break it. But the blasts were deadly to everyone close by. The battery guns immediately locked on and fired, aiming right at the ship but each shot missed as there courses were warped and pushed aside. The less deadly artillery was ignored as they hit the ship causing little to no damage.

“What the hell is it doing?!” Peri shouted from his crossbow.

“It’s about to ram the wall” Pry responded. His voice was filled with despair as he saw their doom about to smash through the defence and allow the knight to enter.

One of the Edger’s air ships tried to block it off. It fired a barrage of missiles and energy blasts. But the ship’s shields were too much and its cannons ripped the airship apart in moments.

One of the wall cannons fired a lucky shot, destroying the port hull but it was too late to sink the vessel. It smashed into the wall, denting the metal and cracking the stone. When people thought the wall had held Schnee activated her ships last weapon. The pulse generator.

Every piece of metal was ripped from its moorings and sent flying to the ship. The ship bent and contorted as it was sucked into itself. Cannons smashed into the vessel and even some of the augmented were thrown to their deaths. When the pulse generator couldn’t pull anything else in the uranium torpedo’s detonated.

In the end the wall didn’t stand a chance.

As the people recovered and rearmed themselves the silver knight emerged from the dark waters. Its right arm spun and transformed into a large sonic cannon which effortlessly took out the Edger’s remaining airship.

Pry’s crew stood by their posts in shock. All their efforts, the might of worlds edge was nothing compared to the silver knight.

Pry had to take action and he knew what must happen. “Bomber, Musket get down below and take everything that explodes to the front!”

Musket turned and faced her captain. Fear etched on her face “W-what? Why?”

“Just do it! And I mean everything, ammo, gun powder, whale oil and even Bomber’s secret stash!”

“Whit-but-”

“No buts Bomber just do it. Peri! We are keeping that bastard busy. Let’s go people!”

“Captain! Are we about to do something incredibly stupid!?” Peri asked.

“Peri my good friend. When don’t we do something stupid?”

Within five minutes the front of the ship was packed with explosives, oil and anything from fireworks to cherry bombs. Peri was still firing a barrage of explosives at the Silver knight as it fired its own blasts. Pry steered the ship behind building and wreckages, the smaller ship being a lot more agile than the war ships.

“Captain, the whole thing is ready to blow. We should get off now!” Musket shouted through the intercom.

“I will be right behind you. I just need steer this and use the thrusters.”

His crew grabbed lines of robe and descended into the burning streets below.

“Promise me your right behind us captain!” Peri asked as he climbed over the side.

“You bet old friend!” But this was a promise he wouldn’t keep. Instead of joining them, Pry activated the metal shields which covered him and the helm before using the thrusters to smash into Kinētikos. The fireball engulfed the entire ship and the silver knight. Taking out the entire street and destroying everything in the way.

Rain drops patted on Pry’s face, bringing him back into the world. Smoke flew into the air and the skies were filled with black storm clouds.

Around him his ship lay in smouldering ruins. Looking to his left he could see what remains of his shield crushing his augmented arm. He tried to move, to free himself but pain burned through his body. His ribs were broken, a long piece of piping had impaled his right leg and it was sticking out at an odd angle. He couldn’t even feel the toes.

Pry’s breathing became erratic. His body was going into shock. But he has been like this before. He started taking deep gulps of air and added pressure to his leg. The rain was getting worst and if he didn’t get help soon he will bleed to death long before he froze.

“Well” he said to himself between breaths “at least it worked”

Kinētikos emerged from beneath the rubble. Pulling the burning tarp and throwing what remains of the fore deck off itself.

“Ah fuck it didn’t work!”

“Where are the Silver knight coins?!” Kinētikos boomed. Its armor was scorched and dented. He was damaged but nowhere near dead.

“Oh those?” Pry asked as if he didn’t know “I think I gave them to a good friend for safe keeping. I can’t quiet remember” Pry’s teeth began to chatter as the cold rain and shock seeped into his bones.

“Then there is no reason for you to live!” Kinētikos raised its arm to the captain as lighting filled the sky.

Reaching Out to the World

I Read Encyclopedias for Fun

Welcome. I see you’re from Earth. That’s great, because I want to have visitors from all over the world. So, here’s what I’d like to do. It’s my Reaching Out to the World Project.

CIA_WorldFactBook-Political_world.pdfI’m sure you’re from somewhere on that map. Well, I’d like you to do a few simple things for this project. It’s really easy.

First, leave a comment on this post saying which country you’re originally from.

Second, share this post on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, Reddit, and so on. Reblog if you like.

Third, and this is optional, tell your international blogger friends about this post, and ask them to leave a comment.

Easy, isn’t it?  I’ll update the countries that are represented here in a list below. I’d love to see blogs from all over the world. Everyone has a unique perspective. So, if you’re interested, then leave your comment…

View original post 26 more words

Heist on silver knights bank. Chapter 8.

For chapter 7 click here!

Schnee was frozen to her bones by the time she clambered up the rocks. Water dripping from her hair and salt staining her leather armour.

As she looked up she saw Kinētikos staring down at her, waiting for god knows what.

“W-well are you going to kill me?” she asked, she cursed at how weak she sounded but the cold had set her teeth clacking.

“You will hand over the silver knights!” it commanded, its voice vibrating with malice.

“What the fuck are you on about. You work for the ruled; you took down our defences and for what?”

“The Silver knights were stolen by the crew of the craft you fell from! You will hand them over!”

The small bag hanging off her belt suddenly felt a little heavier. The two golden kings inside didn’t look like conventional coins but they were valuable. Schnee could tell, she had worked around money all her life. And she never lost a pawn to nobody.

“I get it.” She started “perhaps we could work out a deal. I give you these.” She fished out the coins, throwing and catching them in her metal arm, showing the goods and loosening the arm.  “And you get me back to the port were I can kill some arse-holes and get you the rest. Hmm?”

Kinētikos remained silent, save for its hum and ticking. ‘Is it thinking’ Schnee thought ‘can it even think?’ but in the end it didn’t matter. Schnee had never lost a pawn to anyone. She wasn’t starting now, and when the so-called captain dies she will have a large bag more and an airship to boot.

Without another thought she threw the coins into the sea. Kinētikos went to follow them, desperate. Schnee took this opening and using braces in her legs launched herself onto the giants Shoulders.

Her arms unsheathed the only weapon she had left: her blades. They spun faster than buzz saws as she slashed at its neck and joints, sparks flying with every hit. But there wasn’t a scratch on the Giant. It reacted, its own metal arms reaching behind it to grab her.

But she counted on this. Schnee flipped off the giants back and swung under its arm. Had she had her real arms they would have been burned to the bone but not these. She thrusts her first sword into its left eye. The glass smashed and fire launched out of the socket. With her other sword she went under its arm and stabbed its exposed the gears.

Her blade lodged in the works. Fire Island steel was the hardest metal known; it is exactly what her swords were made from. The blade held against the strain and immobilised its arm. Schnee landed right in front of it. Her arms were red hot, her body sweating and exhausted.

She watched Kinētikos, expecting it to short circuit and die. But instead it just made a series of clicking noised. Then with its functioning arm it pointed right at her before releasing a high pressure shot of steam.

“What the hell just happen back there?” Musket shouted when they were clear.
“Not now Musket! We have work to do!” Pry was busying himself on the thrusters. The speed they gave them wasn’t perfect. They overheated and shorted out. Now he was busy fixing its coolant before they can be used again.

“I saw you push her! I saw what you did! She wasn’t perfect, she wasn’t kind or caring but she was Unruled. One of US!” she screamed the last word.

Pry rounded on her “It was after us damn it! That thing! Whatever it was, wanted us! You saw how it looked! You saw what it could do! I pushed her because she wasn’t at the heist, and it would have ignored her and followed us!” each word he stepped towards Musket, backing her it the corner.

By the time she was backed against the guard rail he had finished and a tear rolled down his face. “If she’s dead then I fucked up. But there is still a chance it ignored her and is following us right now.”

Musket looked down at her feet, ashamed at her accusations.
The rest of the crew had gathered at the commotion.

“You think this has something to do with the heist captain?”

“Yeah, I do, look at the coins. They bear a different mark to everything else we’ve stolen. I wager it wants those back”

Bomber raised her hand like a school child. “Does this mean we need to warn everyone at home? We spent a lot of it getting the ship upgraded and the drinks we bought.”

“That’s right. We need to get back to town and get every weapon and everyone able to fight. We can’t take it down alone but nothing is unstoppable.”

Veetwo looked down at the charred corpse. Kinētikos waited behind him, gears free to move and its eye bubbling molten silver as it healed. 
Veetwo had changed since entering the Silver Knight. Silver lines traced his face and eyes. He stood upright and appeared stronger and smarter than he did before he went inside. It changed him and made him more alive than the product he was.
He looked down at the body with what? Sympathy? Regret? He doesn’t know yet, but he did know what she felt before death, anger. And it was powerful, they could use that.
He picked up the burnt corpse and turned to his giant companion. It knew his intention and agreed. When the body was placed in the command chair Kinētikos closed itself up and started her reconstruction.
Soon the three of them will burn the Unruled until they were nothing but glass.

The Heist on the Silver Knights Bank. Chapter 6

Ok this list is getting long:-

chapter 1 by myself

Chapter 2 by PD

Chapter 3 by myself

Chapter 4 by PD

Chapter 5 part one by PD

And 5 part two by PD

*collabses from exhuastion* and now for a quick chapter 6 by meself


 


The captain woke up with the worst hangover he’s had in years. His room was too bright and the banging on his door sounded like cannon fire.

“Just a moment.” He moaned as he rubbed his eyes.

As he did this he looked at his new arm. The ‘flesh’ around it wasn’t perfect. Too pink and hairless to be real skin and it offered no feeling. He clenched the fist and thought to himself “I’m coming for you brother. Just you wait”.

 

“How much did I drink last night?” he asked Musket when he finally answered the door.

“I don’t know. I passed out. The last thing I remember was you bellowing out ‘help me up’ with half the tavern”

‘Help me up’ was an old anthem of the Unruled. It was created by a group in need to show unity and support to your fellows. There had been many renditions but the classic was always sung at drunken parties, followed by a round of dragon whisky by whoever sung the first line. Unfortunately at drunken parties people genuinely needed a help up from the ground, and asking was the first line.

“Well it was a good party from what I remember. Anyway, what’s up?”

“The sonic cannons have been fitted to the starboard side and we bought the arc cannon for the port side. We have also laid armour on the balloon and hull as requested”

The captain thought about this as he readjusted for work “Good, excellent actually, what about the thrusters?”

“I saw to it personally. Bombs wanted to attach a flame thrower but I reminded her you said no last time.”

“Great, I appreciate that. Let’s have a look at her then” he threw on his armoured coat and hung his long barrelled pistol at his hip.

Outside wasn’t as bright as he thought. Cloudy and about to pour, but then again when isn’t it? His ship was floating silently where he left it; Peri was hanging off the starboard side, calibrating the newly acquired cannon while bomber was climbing the balloon to inspect the rigging.

But what surprised him was Miss Schnee sitting on the ships engine block.

“Good morning Schnee” the captain called as he boarded his ship. “What can I do for you today? I don’t owe you anything do I?”

“Don’t worry captain; I will let any damages caused in my tavern last night to slide.”

“Wait that was your tavern? Since when?” Peri interrupted.

“The man owed me debt so he sold ownership. But that’s history. I am here for business not dept.” She jumped off the engine block and walked a little too closely to the captain. “Truth is I need a ride to the breakwater” she whispered.

“Why do you want to go there?”

“It’s been quiet. Last night we had no report and I can’t see the cogs spinning”

This took him back, she sounded worried and concerned and she didn’t often reveal her feelings on anything. Not to mention if the cogs aren’t spinning then they are defenceless against a ruled fleet.

“I don’t mind taking the trip but it would be just as easy taking a boat, why me?”

“I’m keeping this low, if there was sabotage then I can’t trust anyone. But from what I know, no one hates the ruled more than you”

“Alright you can sail with us; we’ll be down there in three minutes.” He turned to his crew “Listen up folks. We are sailing down to the breakwater. Musket make sure that below is water tight. Peri I want you on the crossbow, the situation is funny but we won’t need the cannons tonight and BOMBER!”

“Yes captain?” she hung from the balloon by her legs.

“Make sure nothing blows up.”

 

The breakwater was a large stone platform built to shield the coast from waves and break any ruled ship that sailed within range. It has sonic cannons three times bigger than the conventional cannon and is powered by the vents below the water’s surface. Normally there are engineers and divers working to maintain power. But today the only sound was the waves smashing against the rocks.

The captain left Musket at the helm and walked the breakwater with Schnee. She seemed tense, swords drawn and ready to shred anyone to pieces. The captain insured his weapon was loaded and followed her.

They found the missing engineers in a small shelter, hunched over their playing cards as if they had all fell asleep. Upon further inspection they were all dead. Pale, thin and old as if the life was sucked right out of them.

“What the hell can do this to a man?” the captain asked aloud. And his question was answered immediately.

On the other side of the breakwater the cogged giant leapt out of the ocean. Its armour plates burning red due to its new energy source. It stared right at the ship and then the captain with recognition before charging toward them.