Category Archives: writing

randoms xiii: temple althren

The temple fell burning, and black ash motes peeled off, spiralled away, swirled and scattered from a rolling turmoil of endless ruin. Molten alloys bubbled, ceramic armours splintered, whole sections of decking rippled in the maelstrom. Bulkheads bulged, faltered, finally failed as—birthed and bred amongst silence and stars—the temple at last struck the atmosphere of an unknown planet and plunged down to destruction…

All of this is accidental, incidental even; wrong space, wrong time.

A Kovanarii combat-cruiser—Empire Light class, name of  Tesallanc, for those keeping notes—in pursuit of an entirely different agenda, clipped the Temple Althren amidships with a brace of spiral seekers launched for an altogether different target.

Temple Althren warped into that field of fire, took the mortal damage aimed at another, and the Kovanarii’s quarry jumped away, lived on to fight again.

A brief scan for survivors—inconclusive—a suitably contrite and concise flash-message to high command, and the Empire Light Tesallanc left the system, coruscating waves of warplight fading, as the temple fell burning in their wake.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized, writing

randoms xii: alternative factory

No one remembers the factories. Not really. They appear only in dreams and old photographs and nobody ever thinks too hard about them or about what happened there.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized, writing

randoms xi: arena fighting

The sword swings—too slow, too high—and Lake needs little effort to avoid the arcing blade

“Not good enough.” 

Nemeric grunts. His tunic darkened by sweat, eyes wide and wild, his breath hard and ragged. Not pacing himself at all. 

“Like we practiced,” Lake tells him. “One-“ 

Lake pivots from the hip, weapon raised, sweeping inwards. A clash of his sword against Nemeric’s, the shock of it felt in the fingers and forearm. 

“-two-“ 

Lake pivots into a high, fast backswing and Nemeric dances away to avoid the speeding sword point. 

“-three.” 

Nemeric is recovering as Lake thrusts forward, a quick jab, no danger of it reaching Nemeric but he oversteps backwards, stumbles, falls flat on the sand as Lake moves in. 

“Better,” he says. 

The crowd roars in the high stands around them. Not for Lake and Nemeric. The main action is taking place on the broad wide expanse of the Square—in fact a rectangular plateau of bright white marble in the centre of the stadium—whilst Lake and Nemeric shuffle and feint and make a show of struggle, in the shadows near the edge of things. 

Nemeric is flailing around with his sword as he struggles to rise, red faced and gulping air. 

“Quickly, man, quickly,” Lake tells him. “Much longer and they’ll think your heart’s not-“ 

A howl from Lake’s right and he spins.  Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under WIP, writing

randoms x: ‘alienist’

“I had some school days. Back at the start. Little bits and pieces anyway. There wasn’t much book learning to be had when I was growing up. On account of my situation, you know?” 

I’ve read the files. Understand all that’s been recorded about her circumstances. The next steps involve a deeper apprehension.

“Remember the Crusades,” she says. Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized, writing

randoms ix: ‘sind’

“I torched an orphanage one time,” she says. “None of the kids were harmed. We just stood outside and watched and laughed whilst the deep-red bright-yellow flames took the whole of that horrible place down to the ground.” 

I don’t have anything to offer. 

“When the constables arrived—after the fire brigade and the one unnecessary ambulance—everyone said it was me. The kids all bold and happy with the fact, you know? Proud that I had rescued them from everything that went on there. They thought the grown-ups would understand. Be grateful.” 

A pause while she lights another cigarette. No matches. She just holds it between her fingers and the end sparks and catches just-so. If there’s a trick to it I don’t see how it’s done. Something chemical or…  Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized, writing

randoms viii: matchbox signs

What did he look like?

 French.

 

I don’t understand what you-

 

Like a French actor maybe. One of those ones from the seventies or eighties? Unshaven, rail-thin and scruffy at the edges, but cool with it in a rumpled blue suit, black lace-up shoes; like he’s been out all night and doesn’t care who knows it. His nails were clean and long. That’s all I remember. I didn’t get a good look.

 

What was he doing when you saw him?

 

Walking and watching, mostly. Step a few paces from here to there, stop, and then wait and look around, like that, you know?

 

And that’s all you-

 

I saw him reach into an inside pocket of his jacket. He took something out—a few times—put them in his mouth. You could imagine the crunch. Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized, writing

randoms vii: waste ground poppies

“You can’t walk up and stick a bullet in this guy. That’s just-”

Albrecht knows better. “I’m a pretty good shot.”

“Ain’t what I mean,” Mato says. Shakes his head. His face is hard to read in the dimness of this makeshift bar. “That’s not it at all.”

Albrecht sighs, runs a slow hand across her buzzcut hair; she’s got bandages and splints on a couple of her fingers, bruises fading across her knuckles. “Okay,” she says at last. “Let’s have it then. Everything you know.”

Mato gives her nothing.

Albrecht uses her good hand to push a full bottle of bourbon across the table. Backs it up with two packs of cigarettes, still sealed, Prime quality. “Tell me about Topper.”

This story will be a sequel to this oneBroken Rooms: Observe & Report

Broken Rooms RPG

Leave a comment

Filed under WIP, writing