Mud

There was a peacefulness about it, spangled, all limbs and hair, beautifully interwoven, beautifully planted beneath the dancing bastards, peaceful, just before the decomposition set in.

They thought they had won – they thought they were the last ones laughing. Well they weren’t – and if one of them had put their ear to the freshly dug ground, they may have heard me, laughing, or at least giggling to the best of my ability, given my sticky situation, oxygen was in scarce supply down there.

My head fucking throbbed. To say I had a splitting headache would probably be so accurate it would be ironic-but that’s cliché- Henry doesn’t do cliché. My shoulder was a bit stiff too, shit, so was my calf. I was in a bit of a state to be honest. However, ever the optimist I am, I took comfort in knowing I was at least a couple of shades pinker than the guys around me. And a couple of degrees warmer.

Vibrations and cold fluids oozed through the clumpy clots of clay, releasing pockets of death drenched air for me to feast on. The disturbances serendipitously lubricating the angular branches of cold and stiff flesh that penned me in like I was a marble caught in a sadistic version of kerplunk – before that game was invented, of course.

Thankfully they had removed the tomahawk from my shoulder, they tend not to bury their weapons, the Iroquois, so my flesh had begun to knit back together. My tendons were still intact. I knew this because I could still make a fist. Setting my fingers to the scoop position I started digging, upward.

Slowly.

Slowly.

Slipping past the flailed limbs of my former crew. Each limb of a comrades corpse acting as a rung on the ladder of vengeance, each arm and handle reinvigorated my determination to get out of that fucking grave and take my revenge on the swine responsible.

The ground grew colder and wetter as I neared the surface, the cackle and insidious celebrations blurred on. To my surprise the sun was high in the blue. The sickly slap of sex couldn’t be mistaken. I snatched my hand back as the feel of a persons hot flesh brushed against the top of my knuckles. I heard a high pitched scream, a little one, but it was definitely spooked. Something was said that I couldn’t clearly make out. Followed by a deep French voice booming out, nonchalantly, and laughing before the sticky slap continued above me.

I started to laugh too, adjusting my footing. The sex noises stopped. I laughed harder. The French voice suddenly sounded a little less…nonchalant. Scuffs in the ground above me revealed more of the sky, more of the Frenchman and his Iroquois partner. It was a man. Two men. I wasn’t surprised, he was French.

I closed my eyes as the ground continued to be fingered free from around my face.

There was a strong smell of  ass.

My feet were in position to spring. It was going to be glorious. Like the fucking dolphin of doom.

The laugh began as a rumble deep in my throat…


Savage

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Image courtesy of http://www.reddit.com/r/Cinemagraphs/comments/1lapqw/starry_night_the_great_gatsby_2013/

We slept beneath the sky, well, they did, I lay awake beneath the star spangled window, watching the universe flirt with the Earth, perpetually.
The Peacemaker sung and danced, apparently “guaranteeing” that it wouldn’t rain on us- but I wasn’t holding my breath, bloody good job really.
But, as I lay, watching, the sky remained splendidly clear.
Distant sighs of the tide did little to quell my anxious paranoia as I concentrated on my breathing, consciously drawing in each breath, consciously exhaling again. It was annoying and I wish I hadn’t started it. However, things being what they were, I did lie awake.
I could smell them before I saw them, the French, as they advanced on us, sneakily, through the network of Tippees. Their approach cowardly being smothered by the sounds of sporadic wailing and fires crackling from the Iroquois camp.
My crew remained hooked in slumber as I sat up, ready to raise the alarm…but I was already too late.
A dark flock of death rained down, quite gracefully even as the swishes and thuds landed, followed by the gasps and screams of my men, chorused by the unfortunate native women that had chosen to bunk down with them.
An arrow sunk through my calf setting my temper on fire as I rolled and sprang to my feet, snapping the tip off in the process.
That was when I knew just how fucked we all were.
The arrows were Iroquois, I confirmed this assumption as the first tomahawk lodged into my shoulder. I looked down at it, shaking my head. The pain hadn’t arrived yet, I decided to leave it exactly where it was as I ran, or rather, hobbled, my way across the killing field. My target: the Peacemaker, that fucking bastard.
French war cries rang out as the frog fuckers split through the line of crouched archers, swords aloft, charging on us as we writhed.
My men, or what few still remained, gurgled in the mud behind me, squirming like overturned woodlice.
Another tomahawk whistled past me, dangerously close to my other shoulder, as I witnessed the first unspeakable act from one the Iroquois.
One of the Mcs had managed to climb to his feet and bravely draw his weapon. He even managed to parry the French soilders clumbsy swing. I cheered silently as I watched him find his balance and poise to strike the flailing Frenchman dead, only he didn’t get the chance. Another tomahawk, identical to the one currently lodged in my shoulder struck him just above the knee, shockingly passing straight through fabric, flesh and bone in the process. As his leg was amputated I stopped, so did he.
I don’t know who was more surprised to be honest. Meanwhile the blood gushed out of his stump like a pressurised fountain as he hit the ground. The Frenchman turned to finish him off but after seeing his foes wound he continued on, leaving him to water the field in blood.
I suppose you think that was inhumane of him, right?
Yeah, that’s what I thought too, that was until the Peacemaker approached looking like a fucking skinny man-bird. The fucking vulture of evil.
I redirected my course as the bastard pinned the bleeding Mc, viscously, to the blood soaked grass with one of his bony knees.
He kneeled on the back of my man, my man! Leaning over his head, silver gleam catching in the moonlight.
I wasn’t quick enough to stop it.
Mc screamed in a way that I have never heard before, the very though of it still makes my hand shake.
The Peacemaker continued to crouch over his head, his scrawny arms thrashing in short controlled stabs while Mc gurgled out his hell for the whole world to hear.
Suddenly I realised what the Peacemaker was doing, but if course it was too late, Mcs hair and skin had been cut from his head and was flapping against the back of his neck. Yet still he screamed. They sure did make them Irish bastards tough.
The Peacemaker continued to cut and tear and cut and tear until the white of his skull shone dull white in the moonlight.
I was almost there, a few feet more and I would have the horrible cunt bleeding beneath my blade.
Mc’s screams were the last thing I heard that night as something heavy sunk into the side of my head, sapping my strength, killing my fire and sending me blind into the mud to be swallowed up in the brutal slaughter, along with the rest of my company.


The Peacemaker

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The New City – later named “New York” after the ol’ Duke himself, but I suppose that’s common knowledge, eh? As is the Hudson river being named after that bloody flowery English poet, can’t remember his full name, but let me tell you this: Henry Game sailed down the “Hudson” long before that fucking prancing clown did. Still, you will probably have noticed that my name has been redacted from histories, most of them anyway.
Yes, the New City, as I was saying, was a place very much in transition in the year of 1555. The New City was choking, stuck in the clutches of the Old World
The French had their grubby little digits in there – the natives, the, ahhh, the league? The six nations? O’ I can’t remember what they called themselves now. The French called them the Iroquois, I think – them, those bastards, the “Peacemaker”, their leader, he introduced himself to me, in French, whilst smiling to my face, was anything but his namesake.
My vessels were docked out of the bay, long boats moored against the shabby piers. The crew, most of them anyway, remained with the boats whilst myself, Skelton, the black one and the remaining two Merks, accompanied the Indo-French welcoming party that waited on the banks, passive aggressively, it was the cannons levelled against my darling Mary that gave me that impression.
We were in no condition to fight. Provisions were low, too low to chance being turned away without re-stocking. I guess I had no choice but to go parley with the Peacemaker.
I’ll translate into English, in the interest of clarity, the Peacemakers words:
“Welcoming of you, to the New World. Where do your hearts of love belong?” He sang, weirdly, whilst shaking his bony arms in the air, feathers and beaks clacking on his necklace.
He was asking if we had been sent as an emissary, I deciphered.
“Peacemaker, I am Henry Game, friend of no King, captain of the-
I stopped talking as the French commander whispered into the ear of the colourfully decorated Peacemaker. It was terribly rude of him to cut me off like that, but then again he was French.
The Peacemaker laughed harshly, suddenly the tension in the tippee was thick. The native warriors stiffening up in response. I wondered if laughing over here was a bad thing?
The French commander stepped aside, red faced and sweating, he avoided my stare, it was obvious he knew me.
I suddenly felt disappointed. I was hoping for a fresh start in the New World. Shame.
Suddenly the Peacemaker stood, all theatrical, all beak, bone and paint, he spat into his palm and offered it toward me.
Naturally I shrank back from such vulgarity.
“Be welcoming, Henry Game, slayer of Popes!” The tippee erupted with celebrations, all except the Frenchman, but I heard a rumour once that French men don’t know how to clap?
I stepped forward, looking the Shaman in the eye as I spat into my own palm and slapped my spit against his.
He smiled at me, leered at me even, bleeding gums and what looked like bits of egg shell stuck in his teeth.
And just like that, we were welcomed to the New City, French cannons lowered, grudgingly, and the crew were brought on land.
I made sure to keep a skeleton crew active, just in case. Skelton was only too happy to keep the ships ticking over. He had good sense did that old bastard.
The French weren’t happy about all this.
But neither were the natives. I just didn’t know it, but I soon found out. Jesus Christ did I find out…


Trojan Horse

With the Holy Lance, safely sealed within the bone box and strapped across my back, I set out, deciding I would walk the mile and a half journey to the meeting point.
They offered me a lift, in one of their vehicles, I wasn’t getting in a car with these suicide fuckers.
No, I walked while they drove behind me, slowly.
I had arrived at the rendezvous exactly eighteen minutes late. They looked a little pissed off when they finally saw me. In fact, the truth is I wasn’t late at all, I had just decided to watch them, congregated on the steps of the Court house, looking more and more anxious by the minute. I even stopped for a milkshake, chocolate flavour, before I crossed the rows of passive aggressive taxi ranks, all simmering and smoking in the heat of the day. Wearing gloves, as a safety measure, meant I could carry the drink without getting cold fingertips, God forbid…
The Tyrant was careful, I’ll give him that.
So I walked, they followed, as I already told you, our destination was a newly built luxury Villa, on the outskirts of Baghdad, as it were. I knew the place pretty well, even considered buying one actually. It was popular, especially among wealthy Brits, likewise those who had invested interests in the price of oil, or herione, whichever, both pretty much the same thing anyway. Only difference between them is herione singularly cripples a person while oil cripples the whole fucking world, should it be suddenly snatched away, as it often is, and held to ransom.
As I arrived at the complex I was immediately stopped at gun point by a bunch of hard looking mercenaries. They weren’t local boys, I can tell you that much. I continued to slurp my milkshake, loudly.
Eventually they let me in, the car continuing to creep along behind me.
I could hear music, it was playing from somewhere within the Villa, it was pop music! Something wasn’t sitting right with me. The Tyrant seemed awfully westernised. Did I mention, I had never, well, not up until that point, actually met or laid eyes on the Tyrant before? No? Probably should have mentioned it…
With a name like “The Tyrant”, involved in oil, drugs and tyranny, I assumed he was a he, and I assumed he was an Iraqi. O’ how assumptions can be presumptuous. Huh.
Someone was splashing around in the swimming pool ahead of me, I approached but was again stopped and searched by a well dressed thug, he examined the bone box before handing it back to me, unopened, silently stepping aside.
I walked out onto the tiled patio of the swimming pool, sunbeds and cocktails on standby.
A waiter approached, offering me refreshments.
I ignored his offer by continuing to slurp. He gave up and retreated back to wherever he cometh from.
Pink skin flashed from within the water. Blood pumping I unlatched the bone box and begun drawing the spear when suddenly the Tyrant addressed me, still not facing me.
‘Lord Game, by your definitions, well played’, smiled the Tyrant, turning around, skimpy bikini and all.
I was lost for words, truly. The Tyrant was a women, a bloody ugly women at that, but, still better looking than a man. She had tits and to top it all off, she was a God damn American!
My mouth flapped, wordlessly, spear still a quarter drawn as The Tyrant climbed out of the swimming pool, her stretch marks blazing lines across my soul.
She was powerful. I could feel it. I already admired and hated her. Both are accolades in their own rights.
She held out a hand as she approached. ‘I think I will take that, thank you very much’
I bristled, my surprise melting away as I continued to draw the weapon in response. Death was in my eye but to give her her due, the bitch kept on coming.
‘You will take this down your fucking throat!’ I roared, advancing with real purpose.
She stopped, signalling by raising a hand up high above her head.
I had no mind for silly little games, spear fully weaponised I was ready to take a bitch down.
Her hand made a fist. I stopped.
Shockwaves, thudding through my steel resolution as I watched, from out of an open balcony behind her, a large man drop, hanging from a rope. I immediately recognised him as Grim, and thankfully his neck was not broken as he continued to thrash around like a fish on a hook, his arms and legs bound fast against his lump of a body.
‘So, now I have your attention? Give it to me and I will see that he is cut free.’
Bitch was good, I’ll give her that. This was sure to be a wrench in the works. No wonder they called her The fucking Tyrant.
Milliseconds passed as I weighed up my remaining options, running scenarios over in my mind, people dying, especially her, yet each time Grim died too. She was dead no matter what. There really was no way to save him other than to trust her.
‘Give me a reason to trust that you will let him live.’ I urged, still advancing, still in kill mode.
She held her hands out defensively, I suppose it was a gesture of honesty.
‘I, Helen Gurbestine, give you my word. Know my name and hunt me down should I break it.’
That was good enough, empty words from a walking corpse. I shrugged, dropping the Holy Lance on the tiled floor, the sound making a tinny clatter.
The Tyrant smiled as she held her hand back in the air and gestured like scissors cutting. The rope hanging Grim frayed with a loud snap as his body smashed through a sun bed lounger below.
Mercenaries flooded the area as Helen dived for the spear, tucking it inside her bathing robe, her hired bodyguards forming protective circles around the Tyrant, I saw no reason to hurt her now, besides the damage was done, bitch will be dead by this time tomorrow. Yet still I had given my enemies a tool to be used against me. Grim was more Important. I carefully pulled off my protective gloves, tossing them into the water, inside out, as I gathered up Grim, easily breaking the rope around his neck. He was breathing, barely. I smiled. The poison on the spear would have been transfered all over the skin on her stomach and arms by now. Shit, it couldn’t have possibly gone any better.
And to think, I was willing to play the long game…I honestly believed that the Tyrant was Saddam Hussein! Fucking shows what I know, doesn’t it?
Job was completed as far as I were concerned. It was time to leave the desert behind me.


Trojan Primed.

I closed my eyes to sleep, but instead I lay in a state of unrest. It had taken me most of the evening to make sure I wasn’t being followed. The sky a moody grey when I finally decided to turn in.
Why couldn’t I sleep?
Good question. A lot of shit has happened to me over the last six hundred years. A lot of people killed, friends included…even a loved one, but I’m not ready to tell you about her.
The point is that any one of several hundred reasons, could be at fault for my uncharacteristic restlessness. Usually I sleep like a rock, that’s the truth, but the mystery behind my nights lack of sleep can be summed up by one word. The word is excitement.
Every time my eye lids blinked shut I saw it. This was the mother of all schemes, and right now the Twat was sleeping happily, believing he was bringing his boss the fucking spear of Destiny. Twat.
Nobody gets to try and fuck me without getting fucked back, ten times fucking harder. And the Tyrant tried to fuck me, naturally he thinks he’s the exception to the rule, naturally.
Have I ever told you that I have a serious problem with Royalty? Come to think of it, I pretty much despise all forms of feudalism.
No one person is born above another. We grow and fight and cheat our way up. We end up above others, sure, but we all start at the bottom. Life is the wall. We spend all our lives climbing it, struggling like bastards to get up, but when we do finally reach the top, we fall off. That is the beauty of it: there will always be room at the top.
The Tyrant was about to understand this sentiment better than anyone. Henry Game doesn’t make threats, he makes promises.
And I made a promise, mainly to myself when I was eating salt, running naked through the desert whilst being chased by a killer stripper. The promise is between me and the Tyrant. Well, I guess you’ll find out soon enough. The spear will be the Trojan horse that gets me through the gates of Troy.


Trojan Plot

I gave the signal then stood back to watch the magic happen.
Yusuf Khan, AKA “The Twat”, as I liked to call him, stepped out of the exclusive ‘massage parlour’ without a care in the world. The Twat was his number two, he literally had the freedom of the country. He could, and often did, strike with impunity. His lack of conscience was intriguing. Genuine psychopaths are rarer than you might think. I’ve always seen them as the next step, evolutionary speaking of course. I disliked this man with a passion, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t find him interesting.
He was about to make a humongous mistake, hopefully – you see, Mr Khan, it was rumoured, was the only person in the entire country who knew the exact whereabouts of the Tyrant. Half of the Tyrants you saw on Television were doubles, surgically altered and the such – they literally lived and died at his discretion, sometimes they were murdered…mistaken identity was a risk for these men. They knew it, they didn’t have a choice – Khan was my only hope. This had to work.
The Ifrit, wearing the skin of a young boy, nodded back to me from across the promenade, stepping out of the doorway of a shuttered coffee house.
I couldn’t look away, the suspense was really drawing me in. Reality drama at its best.
The Twat pulled a cigarette from the inside of his military jacket and set off walking toward the innocuous little boy, devilishly grinning, suspiciously even.
I tried to signal the Ifrit, tried telling him to stop it before-
It didn’t matter, too late. The Twat must have got spooked by the child, freakishly drooling, not breaking eye contact, not even blinking, walking like a fucking demented chicken, towards him.
The Ifrit had fucking blown it! I stepped out from my cover, pissed, as The Twat turned away from the Freak and headed towards me, that was when I realised he wasn’t alone. Two ‘regular’ looking men, a little on the ragged side if I’m honest, mirrored the Twat’s change in direction, they were watching him too, guarding him actually. They were also watching the Ifrit, in fact, a lot of attention was being drawn toward the Ifrit. The situation really was getting out of control. I noticed weapons were now drawn. There was a lot more than two on his protective detail. They were everywhere. These fucking Arabs weren’t half a bunch of paranoid fuckers! But what do they say? It’s not being paranoid if the whole world is out to get you.
I suppose in this instance, it was partly true. Again, I found myself tipping my metaphorical hat to the Twat.
The Ifrit had been made, he had suddenly gone from being an asset to a liability. He knew everything: the safehouse, my plan (sort of), my arsenal. I made the choice that needed to be made and let the Twat brush past me, unharmed, whilst I drew the holy lance.
The Ifrit goggled onward, oblivious to the attention he was making, oblivious to the spear in my hand.
Like a flash of black lightning and I had jabbed the spear head through the Ifrit, the young boy, several times in quick succession.
A scream broke through the air and before I knew it the whole promenade was looking at me, horrified, me holding the smoking head of a child, his body likewise smoking on the ground.
I was surrounded, fat pistols aimed at my face. I smiled as I registered that the Twat had returned. Still the corpse of the dead Ifrit smoked. Still I held the blackening head.
Suddenly it appeared as though black wings had sprouted from the boy’s back. I was no longer holding a child’s head, I was holding the head of a horned demon. It’s skin jet-black with razor sharp teeth protruding at varying angles, like a Bat fucked a Mako shark and had babies.
The smoke had finally cleared as I let the head drop with a squelch.
Guns hesitantly lowered as the Twat stepped into the circle of death, his eyes fixed on the Spear of Destiny.
I sheathed it in to the bone-lined scabbard across my lower back, safely beneath my black robe.
‘Don’t mention it, anyone would have done the same…’ I trailed as I wiped my hand on my robe and turned to leave.
‘Mr Game, the lance-‘ hissed the Twat.
I smiled. Killing the Ifrit wasn’t my initial plan but still, it lead me here. I had just won favour with the only man who knows where he is.
Killing only leads to more death. Time for a new approach, I decided, ‘aye, it is. Come to think of it, your boss is after something like this…hmmm, maybe you should give him a call? We could go and see him together, what do you say?’


Trojan Destiny

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Image courtesy of: http://kellyoshi.deviantart.com/art/Spear-of-Destiny-368344846

‘Ifrit, please, for crying out loud, in English! I’m tired of constantly having to contextualise your sentences’. I growled whilst continuing to examine the blade. This Ifrit sure was a chatter-box!
‘Is this what you wished for?’ Repeated the Ifrit, still currently wearing a skin.
‘It seems to be,’ I pondered, distracted in deep thought. ‘But I suppose there’s only one way to really authen…’ I trailed, pulling my glove off and tentatively placing my naked finger to the tip of it. My skin burned and spat, like hot metal when you piss on it. I smiled, this was the real thing, my finger burned like fuck – but still, I smiled, I had finally found it, kind of. And I knew that the Tyrant wanted it, more than wanted it, he fucking massacred entire villages searching for it…a plan was beginning to formulate.
‘It will destroy the blood of El, like us. Why would you choose to keep it close?’
The Ifrit was nervous, she backed away from me as I put my glove back on and dropped the blade into a white bone container – another wish granted. I loved cheating.
‘I keep it because my enemy wants it. I keep it because then there is one less thing out there that can kill me. I keep it because I mean to use it’.
‘The spear of Destiny should be destroyed, not kept as an object of fancy’. Objected the Ifrit, venomously. She was afraid, she had every right to be. This could kill her, would kill her, does kill her.
Smoke had begun to wisp off of her, her skin, it was fucking burning out. She would have to kill again, or, she would have to remain hidden. And hiding was not apart of my plan.
The Ifrit paced back and forth, snake like, naked feet slapping on the tiled floor.
‘You go and find a new skin. Come back by dawn.’ I muttered, and with a pop she was gone.
That just left me alone with the power of Destiny in my lap.
I sucked the raw wound on the tip of my finger and plotted my next move. With a pop the Ifrit had returned. It had only been two minutes. I smiled in approval as I looked over the new skin. The little boy, seven maybe eight years of age, smiled back. This would work perfectly. The Ifrit slunk away, all crab-like, into the darkest corner of the room. He was still watching me, smiling at me. I turned away. Why did I have to get lumbered with the fucking clingy djinn?
I continued to suckle, knowing that if I turned over, the freak would be watching me. The spear of Destiny never left my side that night.


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