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Cur Chapter 13 ‘Dyed in the wool’

Yeah so I spent way too long proofreading this and procrastinating to have anything interesting to say above hello and goodbye.

No seriously, really happy with Cur, could be better, I think it needs another going through before an edit. Gonna rope in Chrissy again for that when it’s good and ready. The story is reaching the apex, it’s about to get really good. I was considering putting this next bit earlier on but my good buddy that got me into the witcher which I know hate (the witcher not my polish pal) convinced me to put it later on for more of a reveal.
I didn’t really want an ‘epic reveal’ because I wanted the story to sort of stand on it’s own. I’m still not 100% I’ll need to come back to and decide, I’ll have some other people read it and give me a general feel. I just need to set aside some time to really do a deep dive on it and get some feedback from everyday plebs haha.

But I like what’s there, I think it’s solid, it’s got a good foundation. I loved writing it, I loved getting into celtic folklore, it was really like a journey for me. I loved every minute of it, I literally have like 80+ pages of notes I took from all over the place, no not just from wikipedia.

So yeah, Diana aside this one caught me off guard and is probably the most ambition and most exhilarating project I’ve done and I can’t wait to keep it going. I’m predicting like five books but we’ll see, there may be more because there are massive gaps in the actual folk lore. It doesn’t really have an ending so that’s going to be the big thing for me. Finding a place to end is hard because the folklore is written like real history and history has no end.

But that’s about it, didn’t get a lot of Diana editing done because of irl shit and I’m staring down the barrel of a lot of day job drudgery leading up to christmas, so that should be fun. Unironically of course.

So yeah now I want to make sweet french toast that I saw on a facebook ad, bye now!

See you…

They fled Slaghtaverty before daybreak, taking a steep path out of the valley. Cur walked silent and solemn in front of the cart with Tuan at his heels in the form of a dog once again. Birog trailed behind on the cart her side lighter without the sword but her heart heavy. She looked back at Slaghtaverty and over the other side she saw smoke coming from Newgrange.

 

 

The streets of Slaghtaverty were bare and made a hollow ringing sound as the horses hooves struck the cobbles.

 

“Where is everyone?”

 

It was midday now and the streets were barren and silent as the grave. The only sound heard was the occasional shutter slamming as presumably a dweller locked their house up tighter than before.

 

“Some kind of peasant holiday perhaps” Bres joked atop his elegant horse. His men laughing nervously as their eyes darted here and there.

 

“I smell magic in the air” Dian said led along as their prisoner on the back of Ogma’s horse.

 

Ogma himself had a bandage over his ear that Dian Cecht saw fit to administer with a sly grin at the corner of his mouth.

 

Their procession continued through the empty streets slowly. Cautiously looking at every window and door frame until they came upon a stream that flowed adjacent the outer wall.

 

At that stream was an old washer woman on her knees furiously scrubbing something in the water.

 

Their processions stopped with a clattering of hooves and chainmail hauberks. Bres motioned to one of his men to approach the hag by the stream.

 

He did so with an air of caution which seemed puzzling even to him. Everyone felt it, a sense of distinct and terrible foreboding, they could smell it.

 

The old woman began to hum over the sound of her thrashing the clothes in the water.

 

Bres and his men approached her but she didn’t seem to notice, continuing to wash her clothes in the stream unburdened by their presence.

 

The soldier approached close enough almost to touch her rags and then he saw the water, red and thick with blood. “Hag, who’s clothes do you wash?”

 

Her humming sank low and then stopped. “I wash the clothes of those fallen in battle.” She muttered flatly.

 

“What battle? Who’s clothes?” The soldier craned his neck to try and see the clothes and stood stunned and frozen at the sight of the crest emblazoned on them. For it was their own.

 

“I wash your clothes sir knight” She said. “The one you seek, the broken king, he waits for you in the glade- blood and bone and death he wears as his mantle.”

 

The hag turned, her face hideous, ravaged by age and twisted by evil. She let out an ear piercing shriek which made all clutch their ears in pain.

 

Ogma acting quickly covered his remaining ear and with his free hand clubbed the hag from his saddle. With a sickly thudding crunching sound felled her in one blow.

 

The soldier fell back gripped by fear “It’s an evil spirit, a tide of ill omen sire! We must abandon this quest!” He screamed. “We shouldn’t have burned the newgrange! We’re damned!”

 

“Silence, superstitious nonsense, some mad old woman means nothing of our luck, now away with you!” Bres realigned himself in his saddle and spoke softly “We’ll find somewhere to recoup, a bit of rest will do us all good.” His words felt practised and empty, his eyes fearing to rest on any of his men.

 

Despite the initial summation, the town was not empty but sealed and covetous. Bres and his men stole away to an inn of which they made up the majority patron.

 

The inn was dark and cold and squalid and smelled of ash and dried blood. The barkeep a skinny potmarked man with a round gut greeted them sheepishly. His hands shaking and his skin ashen.

 

“We seek food and drink for me and my men” Bres stated.

 

“Oh” He said shakily. “And how will sire be paying may I ask?”

 

“You speak to the king of Inish veil, that is payment enough.” Bres bellowed.

 

“You’re pulling my leg, Bres, the king of inish veil would never set foot in-.” The man took aside the events of the past evening and gazed at their crest and at the visage of Bres the beautiful himself. “R-right away my lord, forgive me my king, I should’ve known by the crest, by your face, your noble voice alone! It’s just we’ve had somewhat of an upset here-“ The barkeep as if forgetting something paused and darted into the back to prepare viddels for the troop.

 

He returned shortly with a caske of ale, some bread and cheese and dried meats of which the men took of without hesitation.

 

Bres approached the cleanest looking bench and prepared to sit when a strange man slipped into his path.

 

“Good day sire” The man said calmly.

 

“Good day” Bres said with a puzzled indifference.

 

The stranger was slight and had a flowery way about him with brightly coloured clothes, wearing a goose feather cap.

 

“It is I Coirpre, I was on my way to Dun Bresse but as you yourself reside here, noble King Bres. I see no point in making the journey, I ask only the price of an ale and a good meal”

Read the rest on inkitt Dyed in the wool

Cur Chapter 10 ‘Spirit is willing’

Bonjourno, did things a little differently today, did my proofreading and spamming in the morning and I’m doing this now, hence it’s later than usual.
No reason, I just like doing stuff like that haha.
So yeah been proofreading, I did this bad boy right here, and I’m working my way back through Diana After Dark and it’s going pretty well. I feel like I’m being really objective like I can step back and look at it as a whole, because I know how it played out so I can see holes and I smooth out rough areas. I think it’s really helping the flow. And I’m looking forward to fixing a few plot holes I may have left open later in the book, but I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it. I think after this segment of 3 ring is done I’ll focus on proofreading it full time until it’s done and then start spamming it to agents when I’m near enough done.
Been an ordinary week, writing stupid clown shit and battling depression and possible retardation, nothing new there haha. Just been feeling shit, like I’m enjoying writing 3 ring but it’s also fucking depressing knowing it’s really a waste of time because no one’s gonna read it haha. I know I’m just writing it to stay sharp but I know my time could be spent better and I really think I need a new job so I can turn some of this excess time into money I can use to hire more editors and see the people that mean the most to me, the few of those I have.
Not been reading as much either which is lame, the latest Parker book just hasn’t hooked me, its kinda just a bunch of stuff happening. This is sorta continuation of that lame themepark book and I thought it would redeem that but so far its a little flat but I really haven’t read that much of it. But there aren’t any characters or plot points that jump out at me. It’s kinda just treading water, which sucks because it’s referencing one of the strongest books in the series at the start. Where to get back at this Mafia organisation he gives the green light on a bunch of the people he’s connected to to do a series of coordinated hits on them, punching them straight in the wallet. Basically trying to show the outfit that he has as much power as they do in regards to control of their money. But that was a great book which set up quite a few characters who appeared later in the series and all the little robberies were great but in this it’s just Parker and Grofield doing some really boring robberies for pennies to piss off this guy who they think stole the take from a botched job but he actually has no idea where it is.
So it just feels like it’s running up a hill, spitting in the wind, pick a saying haha.
I’m just not desperate to rip into it like I usually am, I really need a new book series to read haha. Another Dexter would be great, maybe I could just read Dexter again haha.
Anyway about Cur, going over it still, cleaning up a lot of it, it’s rough but it has potential, I think I was a little overconfident with it, maybe overextended but it has something, I just need to keep chipping away at it. There’s something good there, I just need to clear away the shit and pull it together. Because in some respects it feels a little small because it’s really just a piece of an epic story. There’s no way I could do the whole tale justice in one book without doing just a big birds eye view without getting down to the nitty gritty. It would end up just being the mythology not a story. So I needed to get down in the mud a little bit and get creative to craft an origin to this war. And I think I did an ok job. I really only have one person’s opinion on it but he thinks it’s alright haha.
Anyway, gotta go do something else now, eat maybe? I dunno, what do I even do except write and talk shit?
See you…
“Why have we stopped?” Bres called out to the stone coloured sky as he tilted the visor on his helmet back. His armour was gaudy and extravagant, hints of white gold and gold leaf burdened a chestnut mare.
Ogma rode silently at his side aloft his dappled grey, his visor down.
“Sire, a swineherder blocks our path and wishes to speak to our captain.” A young knights errant said, hiking his hauberk up as it seemed a little too big for him.
Bres sighed and made his way to the front of the convoy with Ogmar trailing behind him in a terse canter.
The path they were on was a narrow dipping one lined on both sides with stones separating an embankment of rocky crags. The stones demarked a break in the fields used for grazing from the sacred groves of Newgrange. The village folk liked to have their livestock feast on the grass on those groves. They thought the grasses there imbued with some mystical properties. Producing milk and meat sweeter and heartier and wool hewn softer and stronger.
To turn back they would have to climb the embanked and loop around by crossing open farm land. Adding annoyance and further time to their journey.
Bres beheld the man with raised eyebrow and a sneering condescension as if expecting to witness a pig rolling around in the mud at his feet.
The swindeherder was deshevelled and appeared hobbled with a large white branch cane. Despite his deformities he had the broadback of a farmhand. His dark cloak covering most of his face and body, with one sleeve hanging loose at his side. A placid shaggy dog panting at his feet.
“What is it you want swineherd?” Bres said with the listlessness of a court maid.
The man rolled one stoney eye towards Bres and Bres was taken with a queer feeling as if someone were scything grass to make a grave. He swallowed it down and scoffed as the swineherder took some time to answer.
“Well out with it, I haven’t got all day, you stand before the king of Inish Veil” He said softly, as a light spattering of rain began to fall.
“Is that so?” The swineherder said in an almost mocking colloquial tone, his posture not changing at all.
“What is it you want peasant, speak now or be run down!” Bres said idly, trying not to look at the vagabond.
“I wish to issue a challenge” the old swineherd said his voice low gritted.
Bres sighed “We don’t have time for games or riddles old man and we wouldn’t waste the coin now out of our way!”
“I wish to challenge the strongest amongst ye to single combat” The old man said as if he was asking for a sip of water.
The men all laughed after a moment and Bres too could help but chuckle.
All but Ogma laughed, he instead bristled with a cool anticipation. There was something not quite right. Some drive or pull, some whispering in the back of his head that told him something was padding the earth downwind. Something waiting to see the soft side of a belly to slash. Some great battle lay over the horizon just waiting to cast his legend in bronze, his death in history.
“Do you hear this Ogma?” Bres said still chuckling “This swineherd challenges you to duel, do you accept?” Bres grinned.
Ogma said nothing and dismounted his horse.
He approached the stranger slowly tracing a wide semi-circle. Drawing the steel club from his belt.
“Draw your weapon stranger.” Ogma said cautiously.
“I have no weapon” The old swineheard said.
“A weapon!” Ogma called.
Another steel club was thrown at the swineherd’s feet but he seemed not to notice. Only after a moment stoopping slowly to drag it off the ground leaning over his cane awkwardly to do so. It was revealed he was a cripple. He only had one arm.
“Tis a brave cripple” Bres jested “P’haps he seeks an honourable felling?” Bres laughed, tugging at the reigns of his horse trying to keep her straight.
Ogma gritted his teeth as he felt a low ebb of malice coming from the stranger. An aura of hate kept at bay by a slow flowing of misery and disgrace at his pitiable appearance. His chest nevertheless swelling as he could hear trumpets of battle ringing in his ears but couldn’t explain why. The hair on his arms bristling. He could almost see the blood stained grass swaying as he looked upon the stranger, hear the thunder. He could feel the static air but he dare not make his feelings known.
“Come on Ogma take pity on the poor wretch, his swines have turned fowl!” Bres joked “He wants you to put him out of his misery, but it hardly does your honor any good to thwought such a wretch”. Bres laughed and rested his chin on his gauntlet as if to pounder.
“The knight could tie his good hand” The stranger said at once in a low drawling tone from unseen lips.
“What a good idea!” Bres said, his armor jangling as he slapped his thigh. “Tie your good arm and then fight the swine herd on fair terms and keep your honor, there we’ve settled it.” Bres smiled, pleased with his idea.
Ogma breathed through his teeth as he gripped the haft of his club tightly. Feeling the sweat on his palm then releasing it again, then tightening it again.
One of Ogma’s men tied his arm behind his back and then stood back as Ogma stretched his now only arm with the club extended. He walked slowly crossing one leg over the other circling the swineherd as his men cleared an uneven circle with their bodies and erect pikes.
The stranger did not move or adjust his footing. Only seeming to exhale and rise slightly allowing the bleached branch he was using as a cane to fall on the ground.
Then suddenly a flash and the swineherd threw the club with a ferocious speed and vitriol. It caught the crowd by such surprise they had no reaction whatsoever but stunned silence. Ogma was a skilled warrior and his senses were keen and swift and with his own great strength he met the blow. Ogma deflected it with some difficulty. The force of it lifting him off one of his feet and making his hand ring with energy, sending sharp pains up his arms and down his back.
But he could not rest. The swineherd was relentless and vicious taken by the spirit of a wild boar himself he threw his cloak soon after not stopping for a beat. Never once thinking one attack would fell the champion of the Tuatha de’. The cloak was heavy and sodden with the beast’s sweat hitting heavily and sticking. Ogma tried to bat it away but the cloak wrapped around his head. Without his other arm for support it drove his club back hitting him awkwardly around his shoulder just nicking the bottom of his helmet.
The swineherd was used to having one arm and all his movements compensated for it, never slowing or struggling.
Bres who had been laughing and smiling and geering jovially up to this point had grown silent and constipated. “That face” He whispered to himself as his own face drained of all colour and he took on the appearance of a ghoul. “Not possible” He laughed it off his mind playing tricks.
The man standing before them was not old nor infirmed but a man at his full height erect towered over them all. His face scarred and horrid, head bald, shaven awkwardly with scraps of hair missed dangling like that of a corpses. His skin pale and drawn and wet looking, clothes of mesh and leather, dark and fitted for speed. A sick sadistic smile on his twisted face. Eyes burning like coals with what seemed like a relentless savage rage, a fire that would consume all that touched it.
In an instant he’d picked his club back up and was on Ogma who was still struggling to remove the sodden heavy cloak from him with only one arm.
The swineherd laughed as he hit him in the stomach. Ogma doubling over, another blow sent Ogma’s helmet flying revealing his bonny face as he sprawled on his back like a wingless fly.
The swineherd pinned his other arm with his foot dropping the club carelessly by his head. Cur withdrew his strange blade from his belt, stooped swiftly and stopped to grin at no one. He sliced Ogma’s ear off as if he was cutting himself a piece of cheese. Ogma’s silver tongue wailed out in pain as he writhed under the heavy heel of the stranger.
Cur held the bloody ear in his hand and closed his fingers around it. he stooped again to put back on his cloak as the men around him said nothing. The sounds of their hauberks and plate mail jangling as they stood frozen said it all. Shaking, petrified from fear and shock and rage as they watched their hero, their champion defiled by one so pathetic.
Cur glanced around at them and laughed softly as they encircled him. Their breathing heavy as they tried to muster the courage to draw a blade, even one.
“Let him pass”
They turned to look at Bres as he sat atop his horse tapping nervously on his thigh.
“I said let him pass, would you besmurge your honor to kill a man for winning a duel mutually agreed?” His voice was strained and irritable as if the words tasted foul and burned his tongue. “An ear can mend, honor cannot, I said let him pass damn you!” He spat swatting at the air with his reigns, his mare swaying beneathe him.
Nothing but the sounds of straining jaws and clacking teeth and shaking mail knees and chausses. Fear and rage and a grotesque swallowing of all of it as they cleared a path for the beast before them.
Cur turned to smile at Bres, it could have been an acknowledgement of his nobility, a grateful smile. But it wasn’t, far from it. It was a wicked arrogant grin and it set Bres’s teeth on edge. He clutched angrily at his horse’s mane causing it to whiney and shake it’s head violently as he watched the familiar stranger walk away.
Checkout the rest of the chapter right here.
Spirit is willing

Cur Chapter 4 ‘Devil Knows’

Hi there, just drinking some green tea struggling to give a fuck.

Gonna keep this short for an intro because I have a headache and I generally feel like shit and I have lots of day job to contend with. Also there isn’t gonna be a huge chunk of witcher bitching because I’ve been finishing up that Parker novel. I think I’m gonna read the next witcher book and if it’s not significantly better I’ll abandon the whole series. None of the characters really grab me, the story is sort of a generic nothing burger, the action is phenomenal but there just isn’t enough of it.

The Parker novel is definitely the worst, it was just kind of small scale in comparison to the others and for me the fun and anticipation comes from them planning and planning around the job. Like my favourite part of I think it was the second book is where they all plan the robbery and then in the next scene Parker is planning how to stop the play of the other two in the job. Because almost every job involves an outsider who is trying to steal the lot and Parker has to plan the job and around them so it’s this really exciting chase between Parker and the money and the other players.
And while this is happening you’re getting to know all the characters and it’s really fun. This one was a bit of a let down because the actual heist part is sort of boring and goes too well and is just shoved off to the start and then on top of that the people who become the antagonists just seem like random guys and they’re not really that interesting, they were just kind of punks. Although I did like how Parker dispatched them both, that was great, grade A Parker.
I still enjoyed the book, it’s just not the top of the series but I’ve already read the first I think this was the thirteenth and I have ten to go so I’m loving that, thirteenth books in and this is the first one to fall a little flat. That is a damn good track record. I’m three books into the witcher and I wanted to quit it a book ago haha.

It goes without saying if you’re into pulp, Raymond Chandler or Dashell Hammett you’ll love these books. It’s like a classic detective novel from the perspective of the bad guy haha.

That’s about all, wanna start going over my agent pitch stuff for Diana again today and maybe do some more Cur proofreading if I feel up to it. Noticed I stop talking about my love life? That’s because it’s far worse haha.

Anyway.

See you…

 

Devil Knows

“She marked you.” A voice said above him, the voice was unlike any human voice and resonated as if a combination of bird tweets and bear growls mimicking human tongue. “I guess you think you’re special” The voice mocked.

 

The sound of real birds were happily chirping. He could feel moist and verdant foliage underneath him, a slight breeze and the shadow of a large tree. A break of bright beautiful daylight through a crack in the sky that was just his eyes opening anew.

 

Above him looking down the figure of a man’s head wearing a large ornate headdress with deer antlers protruding out covered in leaves and moss. And although his face could not be seen through the bright sunlight he blocked, he knew the man was smiling.

 

Cur awoke from his trance flailing wildly with a sharp inhale of breath. He grasped greedily and vociferously at the face leaning over him and he squeezed it.

 

“Would you stop that now?” An unfamiliar voice barked. “She saved your life and you’d treat her like?” The dog laughed.

 

“I’m already dead” Cur growled as he continued to squeeze the neck of the pretty young woman standing over him.

 

“You’re gonna break yer stitches and your head is just gonna roll off!” The old man said still with the needle in his hand.

 

“Who are you?” Cur asked the woman turning blue in his hand.

 

“She needs air to talk Firbolg” The dog said.

 

Cur took a moment and sneered into the face of the Tuatha woman and tossed her aside like a used rag.

 

Birog coughed and spluttered hungrily trying to force air into her lungs.

 

Cur felt at his neck and tugged at a loose piece of twine hanging from the stitching and ripped it off. His neck slowly healed over. He stood and went over to the young woman as she doubled over gasping for air.

 

He picked her up like a cruel toddler with a ragdoll, by the hair so he could get a good look at her face. Barely conscious the look in her eye was far away and glassy.

 

“Answer me” He growled.

 

“Birog, I’m just a druid.”

 

“Just a druid” Cur laughed low and menacing. “Then you can die”

 

“Now what cause do you have to do that?” The dog asked. “She dug you out herself.”

 

“She did your job for you mutt” Cur bellowed.

 

In an instant the dog took the form of a man of average height with light red hair and a dull pale complexion.

 

“Sure she has other assets you could get more than just the pleasure of killing her from” The man smirked.

 

Cur laughed. “I think she liked you more as a stinking dog, Tuan.”

 

Cur looked her up and down and found no fault. “So be it, she will be mine tonight and tomorrow, she may live.” He laughed and let her head loll back down on the ground.

 

“Wait” The girl strained to talk the dirt shifting under her. “I’ll give myself willingly if you’ll listen to my plea”

 

Cur took her by the nape of the neck, his hand large enough to wrap all the way around it. He picked her off the ground and looked into her eyes. “Talk if it amuses you.”

 

Her own feet under her now she shrugged off Cur’s hand defiantly and dusted herself off. “I helped you bec-“

 

“-You didn’t help me”

 

“Then you planned on being decapitated and buried upside down?” She sneered.

 

“No one looks for a dead man.” He croaked, a wicked smile crossing his cracked lips.

 

Tuan smiled as he span the chieftain’s gold torque on his finger. “You throw in a flashy execution and no one notices a little mouse or a cat scurrying into their houses and robbing them blind.” He laughed.

 

“You only saved this lazy dog a time digging and carrying.” Cur jabbed, a large wicked grin on his face.

 

She looked over at former dog Tuan who smiled shyly tipping his head. “I see, so you’re a shape shifter and a thief” She said scornfully.

 

“Something like that.” Tuan shrugged. “Tuan mac Cairill.” He said as he nodded “You’ve already met ‘Fintan the wise’” He said with a smirk bobbing his head towards the old man who sat silently. The old man was back to silently prodding the fire with the blackened branch and paying no mind to goings on.

 

“And you?” She said looking at Cur.

 

“I have no name” He growled as if that was somehow directly her fault.

 

 

 

 

 

Cur Chapter 3 ‘A kind of magic’

Hello there dudes and dudettes,

Ok sliding in another Cur chapter because I realised I wanted to release a chapter a week and I kind of fucked that up so I’m gonna release two chapters this week to get back on track haha.

Pretty decent week of writing, I’m cutting out filler left and right which is great, really getting into the meat of the story and riding that wave, some things I need to change but I’m really liking where it was taking me. I kind of felt for a little bit that I was going with the motions and not feeling too inspired or if I was tired or fucked, my new sleep routine puts a lot of strain on my eyes because I’m just literally using them more.
My general philosophy when I feel kind of uninspired is just to keep going and go over it later, which I find works for me because I always write detailed synopsises of my work so I never get stuck looking at a blank page, I always have the next thing to go to. I always have something I can refer to if I get stuck.
I know there are lots of writers who don’t use plans and just go at with a blank page and their balls in their hands haha. I have no idea how they do it, to me that’s like fighting a fucking dragon with a toothbrush haha.
I always like to have a plan and a detailed structure at my back so I’m not stuck looking at a blank page with just my dick in my hand. I can always keep my flow going and if I hit a bump I can just take a break and sip some tea and come back to it.

But I was looking back at it and I was pleasantly surprised, it needs work but there’s something there, I won’t be polishing a turd just clearing away the crap on an unfettered gem.

Now for some witcher hate haha. I just don’t care about any of the characters honestly, not one of them, I just can’t care about them, I dunno, I just don’t think I’d get on with any of them and I don’t know what this author’s life is like but he must have some really complicated relationships with women. Every female character he writes is more obnoxious than the last.
Not saying women can’t be obnoxious but it’s every one of them, there’s maybe one woman in any of his stories that isn’t Ciri that has any redeeming qualities at all and even then it’s kind of only in comparison to the others who are awful.
Don’t get me wrong I’m not some rabid feminist by any means haha, I get that women can be assholes but when it’s literally every one of them it just gets tedious and loses all it’s power.
I mean the queen of brokilon was just an endless stream of unfettered cuntiness that I could barely stand. You could replace her dialogue with just farting noises and it would have been less obnoxious and tedious haha. It just reaches a point of parody and I can’t take it seriously and I never thought I’d actually be clambering for a likeable/identifiable female character.
Even in my work I don’t want to put women on a pedestal but represent them as they are warts and all but I also want them to be likeable enough to care about even a little bit and honestly when you find yourself rooting for the people that might rape and murder a character in a book you’ve done something wrong haha.

The Parker novel is pretty good, definitely one of Stark’s weaker ones, but the whole series is the perfect example of unsubverted expectations still being excellent. The witcher is so preoccupied with subverting expectations it forgets to be entertaining. Whereas in the Parker novels you know exactly whats going to happen and you can’t wait to read it haha.
Someone fucks over Parker and you know he’s going to track them down and curb stomp them and you’re tearing through chapters to get to it haha. The mystery comes into play when the why and who and the how are revealed. You what’s going to happen because you know Parker and what happens to people that cross him but you don’t know how he’s going to do it and who he’s going to do it to and that’s why you keep reading for that glorious catharsis that is nowhere to be found in the witcher books, the stories generally go nowhere or full circle, just generally unsatisfying.

Anyway enough of that I need to get proofreading the next chapter of Cur or I won’t have anything to post on thursday haha.

See you…

Ooh almost forgot, The One That Came Back for whatever reason has become super popular on inkitt so I thought fuck it, I uploaded the full edited version to inkitt so if you don’t want to download it you can just read it there.

A kind of magic

That night a dense bluish fog came low over the village. The calls of hounds barking filled the silence as the moon rode high on the crest and half full overhead as the village slept all, all but one.

 

Some form of morbid curiosity and fascination drew her to the empty mucky bog that would be the stranger’s grave. As proclaimed, no markings but a heavy stone pressed down on the grave. The grave that lay far from the town.

 

What she was going to do not even she knew herself but the druiddess felt some unearthly pull to the spot. Maybe a morbid trophy would belay her curiosity maybe not.

 

She approached the grave with trepidation, as if it were the steps to a grand and foreboding house. With no torch whatsoever and the necessity arising. The young girl tutting pulled her sleeve back revealing a gold half torgue around her wrist, with which she gave three quick taps.

 

On the third tap the torque began to give off an errie glow almost like a will-o-the-whisp. A slightly greenish hue that gave her all the light she needed to see the grave clearly.

 

“I have to know” She told herself “I just need to see the body for a moment, I can’t let this opportunity pass me by.”

 

Her curiosity had betrayed her as she was not alone. Too late she noticed the noise, a slight drawn out scratching noise and veiled breathing sniffing sounds and a low growl or whine or whistle.

 

“Who is that?” She called out but no one answered.

 

The scratching sounds got louder and the breathing deeper and faster as she approached the grave. Her footfalls sinking into the loose wet earth of the bog.

 

“I warn you, I have a weapon!” The druiddess swallowed her fear as she approached fumbling her small hands over the clasps. Moving her robes awkwardly to reach the handle of the strange sword she had found herself the owner of.

 

The druiddess drew closer to the noise. Her and on the hilt of the sword and her other on the oddly designed scabbard but she did not draw the blade as she feared to do so. The blade it seemed to her analysis had some magical properties but to the nature of which she had hitherto not discerned. Drawing it in anger could have unforseen consequences.

 

“I have use of magic” She croaked, her voice breaking as she said it, casting the light from her torque over the grave. A dark small dark figure hunched over the grave was digging in the loose earth around the stone.

 

The druiddess forgot to breath, she tensed her cheeks as she tried to swallow the lump of fear in her throat. Having no choice but to pass the light of her torque over the squat stygian figure scrabbling in the muck.

 

To her relief, the light revealed little more than a shaggy mutt. A dog of an indetterminent breed was digging and scratching at the freshly laid grave of the stranger from a by gone age.

 

“Shoo!” she cried. Feelings of anger and relief washing over her. Anger more at herself for being scared of something so pathetic looking.

 

She assumed the beast was just after the freshly planted dead flesh as a not so easy meal beneath the heavy stone.

 

“Away with you!” She swiped her hand in the air but the dog took no notice, continuing to paw and scratch at the soft earth.

 

Birog looked around her feet and found a small piece of sandstone and hucked it at the beast landing a few feet away from it. The creature lifted it’s head to growl and bear it’s teeth briefly before skulking away into the mist again.

 

 

 

Cur Chapter 2 ‘The executioner’s song’

Oh my god, I wasted so much time writing a really savage review of this story on inkitt. Another salty exchange, one of many on inkitt haha.
I just logged in to find a three star review on inkitt from someone who had a weird name and no avatar and the review basically consisted of “Hur durr, the characters are mean, too much violence”. Then I was like ‘seriously a three star review because you thought the characters weren’t nice’
Then he’s like “Hurr durr, I like to give constructive criticism and harsh reviews” And me not knowing I was dealing with the Rodger Ebert of inkitt deigned to read his abortion of a story which literally reads like it was written by the Isla vista shooter. This is literally what Elliot Rodger would write if he wanted to write a sci-fi fantasy mash up story instead of being a weird incel spree killer.
The story is basically all about sci-fi rape and it’s- I can’t find any other word to describe it but as Todd Howard would say; ‘Degenerate’ haha.
But the difference is I actually gave constructive criticism in my review instead of just saying ‘the characters are too mean’.
I mean honestly I don’t care about the reviews on inkitt, really I just put it up there for ease of reading and general feedback but you’re not gonna get a good critique from that page. But when someone just pops up out of nowhere to shit on you it pisses me off. And it pisses me off even more so that the critique isn’t even good. There’s nothing he said that was constructive criticism, I literally can’t make my characters nicer because they’re supposed to evil and cruel because of what happened to them. And then on top of that his story is a steaming pile of literal garbage that is literally like Tommy Wiseau wrote a sci-fi novel haha,

Anyway, I’ll post that next week or you can go on my inkitt page and read it and his review if you give a shit, which I suspect most people don’t haha.
No bitching about the witcher today because I haven’t read any this week because I don’t fucking want to haha. I’ll probably read more tomorrow. But I’m really into the Parker novel I’m reading and it’s getting to the good bit.
So that’s about it, woke up with butthurt in my heart and needed to vent and fuck a schedule for chapter releases I’m planning to release a Cur chapter a week for my one fan haha.
Other than that I’ve wasted too much time already and I need to do some spamming or proofreading or quit drinking coffee haha.

See you…

The executioner’s song

Cur awoke with a bucket of water in his face, locked in a pig pen for a day and a half, stinking as he was. They only let him out once to torture him but too little avail. The pigs snorted and snuffled him as he sat shirtless and dirty as one of them. His head down, suspended by his one arm tightly wrapped with a piece of fibrous twine to the thicket fence.

The dwarves cut him loose and he grinned at them as they shuddered, shrinking behind their pikes at the sight of him.

They lifted him to his feet but he could stand on his own well and they walked him at pike point to the large round house on the hill.

The chieftain of Killaloe sat cross legged on a beautifully decorated hide rug. An ash wood tray with clay pots on it and a large ornately decorated axe at his feet. The hut itself was not anymore grand than the one used as a tavern but it smelled less of piss and old mead.

“Leave us” He said waving his hand.

“Sir he-“

“I know, I said leave us”

The chieftain was a wide portly clean shaven dwarf, only a few tufts of hair on his face he’d missed. He was wearing a gold trimmed tunic that still smelt of smoke and pig shit like everything in this village did. A gold torque around his neck and a conical cap made of birch bark on his head symbolized his status. “Please sit” He said pointing at the rug on the floor.

Cur sat crossed legged with one knee raised.

“Do you know me?” The dwarf’s face was sallow and looked slick to the touch, bouncing up and down as he spoke and dropping when he stopped.

Cur looked through him with a set of icy blue eyes. “I know your name” He hissed.

“Good” He had a pot of some liquid in front of him that he poured out into round clay mugs. “Are you really of the Firbolg?” He said without looking up.

“The Firbolg are dead”.

“I see.” He handed one of the cups to Cur. His down turned face unchanged and grim.

Cur batted it out of his hand letting it roll around on the deer hide rug. The chieftain’s face didn’t move, it stayed perfectly still as if numbed by snake venom.

He cleared his throat.

“We hear many rumors here as you may imagine, a small village like this, all we have are rumors” He tried to smile shyly but his face seemed almost too heavy. “Two in particular interest me, one of a strange series of attacks by blood suckers or ‘Dearg due’ as they call it. Whole villages are slaughtered for not adhering to some elder god or some such triviality. And another about a wandering mercenary that kills for coin and cheaply at that who lacks the good grace to die.” The dwarf managed a pinching at the side of his mouth that might have been a smile.

“Perhaps those rumors are much the same” Cur grinned speaking from his throat.

“We face hard times, some love Bres for his beauty, the fools, women mostly, others.” He paused and breathed out letting his face sag even further “Loathe him for the unfair taxes he levies. A third of our corn and of our milk, its extortion, I and a few others outright refuse to pay it.”

“This doesn’t concern me”

“You’re right of course, but I’m a farmer, it concerns me and that’s why I didn’t deliver you directly to the gallows.”

“Your point?”

“Very well, you’re very skilled and are attached to no clan as no clan alive would have you because of- well look at you.” He scratched his sagging jowl and tipped his head as if to speak to his own round gut. “Kill Abartach of Slaverghty. Do this and you walk free.”

“I walk free now”

“Hard times make desperate men Firbolg.” He sighed deeply and lifted his eyes a little looking for mercy in the man before him and found none. “I see a deadly pattern emerging, the Offaly villages of Annally and Lusmagh were hit first. Formally parts of Connacht as I remember.” His sharp eyes darted to the Firbolg for confirmation and found none. “All their people scattered or dead never heard from again.”

“Then how do you know it?”

“Travellers pass through, say the villages are deserted, all their livestock taken or dead. Not a man woman or child alive, almost no signs of struggle at all, no weapons, no survivors, no witnesses.” He narrowed his eyes to scrutinize the stranger yet again and found only a scornful calm.

“This Abartach?”

“He is the one profiting from their deaths.”

“How?”

“Abartach moves illicit goods from ports in Munster up and down the Shannon river from Slaverghty. Forbidden items smuggled out of the cities of knowledge and other such places. all the villages along the river know of this as it’s safer to transport them by water. Bandits can’t swim. As those villages are aware of this practice they expect tribute for silence. I suspect Annally and Lusmagh got too greedy.”

“How does he do it?”

“That’s what I hope you will find out for me, your freedom and a weight silver.”

“Petty squabbles between dwarves don’t interest me.”

“Well surely your freedom and your life interest you.” He tone shifted became faster and more breathy. This is more than just petty squabbles this is conspiracy, this fratricide.” His face was red and his eyes began to bulge out of their socket, spitting as he spoke. He may well be working for Bres himself!” His face was hot, a bead of sweat trickled down his cheek and then he paused for a moment “How did you know he was a dwarf?” He said as his blood rain cold.

Cur smirked wickedly.

The chieftain’s face became drawn and white and he coughed. “You’re an assassin then?”

“Sometimes”

The chieftain’s face drained of color as he looked at the ghostly white visage of the man before him. “Then the scene in the tavern, just so you could be before me – How much is he paying you? I’ll double it, triple it!”

“He offers me more than mere silver.” He croaked ominously in his gravelly voice.

“What then? Land? His ugly daughter? Spit it out!”

Cur breathed in deeply, his eyes wide and manic as he smiled like a ghoul. “A future!” He said stonily.

“Ahhhhhhh!” The chieftain wailed his flabby face rippled as his ornate axe leapt into his hand. He swung at Cur’s neck getting one good but shallow whack in it at the base of his neck.

No blood just a gaping wound like a notch in a tree. Cur’s head tilted to one side with that manic insane smile on his face still, laughing low and menacing like a demon.

The chieftain crying out pulled his hand back for another strike to free the monster’s head from its shoulders.

Cur caught the little man’s stubby hand in his gargantuan fist with a hard sapping sound. He squeezed the dwarf’s hand letting the heavy axe drop on the hide rug.

“What now dead ma- ahhhhh!” The chieftain cried as Cur pulled him by the arm like a tavern strumpet and lunged forward to rip out his throat with his front teeth.

 

 

Cur Chapter one ‘Who wants to live forever?’

Well would you look at that, is there anything sweeter than a first chapter?

It’s a really good feeling, a feeling I thought I’d lost but then came back stronger than ever and just completely reinvigorated me body and soul. I was kind of stewing after Diana, waiting for the next wave of creative euphoria to hit me and boy did it hit me. I was just kind of going through the motions filling quotas with Gage and 3 Ring, just fun distractions this is the meat, this is heart and soul fire this is what I was born for.

You can tell I don’t really give a shit about Gage an 3 Ring because I really don’t care what people think about them and I haven’t asked for reviews, whereas with this I want people to review the first chapter now goddamit haha. But I think it’s good to keep your pen moving, keep your stick on the ice even if you aren’t feeling it. Just to keep yourself in top form ready for the big game haha. Analogy salad.

The greatest advice I could give another writer if I were asked to do so is just to keep writing, keep practising and keep doing what you love until that one day lightning strikes. Because as long as you are doing what you love it will.

But if you’re not it wont.

Ok so quickly I’m not going to rag on the witcher today, there was actually a decent fight scene in blood of elves, it lasted like two pages but it was ok, then straight back to talking and Ciri taking a bath. I will do an amazon review when I finish it, just for my own sanity, just to get all the salt out of me head haha.

Ok now back to the important shit, so this chapter is basically a character hook so I can unload a lot of backstory in the huge next chapter which still isn’t finished haha (sorry). But the second chapter is really cool and ends in a couple of really awesome fight scenes some of the best I’ve ever written. I kind of glossed over the big battles as exposition because I mean shit, how do you write big battles as compelling? Is that even possible? I mean to me as someone who was a fighter, a fight is more than just swords clanging it’s about personalities clashing ans when you just have these waves of faceless people smashing against eachother it just seems like a sex scene with two blow up dolls, there’s no fun for me there. It was a videogame I’d feel totally different but its not so :P.

I took a lot of inspiration from The Witcher which I suspect takes a lot of inspiration from the Berserk series which I absolutely adore, it’s probably the only fantasy series I follow religiously. A lot of my inspiration especially later on in the book and somewhat for Cur as a character comes from that.

Ok so enough waffling (now I’m hungry) this chapter is going live on inkitt today gonna get writing a blurb and a teaser for it after I transfer from coffee to green tea (he says as he spills coffee all over himself, fuck my life. It was just a flesh wound.

Yeah then I’m gonna try and get some first chapter reviews and get my buddies at work to read it and tell me it’s better than the witcher all they’re all fired haha.

Still proofreading chapter two which is a bit overlong and a bit of a mess and wrestling with some plot changes I made later on that I’m ironing out.

But other than it’s full steam ahead and check out that dank cover art I found haha.

If you want to read it in a mobile format without all my waffling head on over to inkitt right here.

Cur: Blood and Soil

 

The fire pit popped and cracked in the center of the round house. The farmers gathered close with their mead and whiskey to wait as the bard Coirpre tuned his lute. Breathing in and out deeply as he plucked each string in turn. Sitting with his back to the daub wall, where finger marks could be seen in the crudely layered earthen clay.

The ridges of the branch frame sticking out in places like the ribs of a starved horse. A facsimile of the Leinster cote of arms; that of the golden harp hung above the hearth.

A mouse ran along the beams as the wind howled outside. The cold seeping through the thatching making a terrible ghostly whistling noise and disturbing the fire.

 

The bard doffed his grouse feathered cap and smiled as he rested the lute in his lap and started to play.

 

“This poem, I have affectionately dubbed; ‘Bres the bastard’” The poet smiled glancing around the room for a covered smile but found naught but dead silence.

 

“What?!” A woman cawed at once.

 

A man in green tunic leapt from his stool “We feed you and give you a bed and you insult our king?!”

 

“Good people, it’s merely satire; you wouldn’t criticize my work before even hearing it would you?

 

“That you may die roarin like Doran’s arse we would aye!” A broad bearded man said.

 

“Please there’s no need for this, another ballad perchance, I have many”.

 

“Many a time a man’s mouth broke his nose” The bearded man spat.

 

“What’s a ‘bastard’, grandfather?” A little girl asked as she bounced on the old man’s knee twiddling her braided hair tween her finger and thumb.

 

The old grey haired man in the grey woolen cloak looked down at her and sighed “Well it’s a man ere not knowing who his father be.”

 

The little girl scrunched up her freckled face “How could he not know that?”

 

“Well ya see-“ The old man turned his long grey face to the banging shutters. Then glanced over and the small crowd gathered around the poet shouting and heckling and pulling at him.

 

“Grandfather, can you tell me the story of the other king instead?” She said swinging her blond plaited hair about her bonny face unable to keep still.

 

“Child, I’ve told you that story so many times you should be able to recite it by rote”

 

“And I could that” The little girl pouted and preened.

 

“Well go on with yourself then”

 

“I will” The little girl put her hands on her hips and tipped her head back putting her finger to her lips. “Mmm well there once was these men”

 

“Were they just men were they?” Her grandfather jested.

 

“There once were these people, mmm and they were called the Nemedians, and this was their land and they called it, erm… Inish Alga, which means; ‘the noble isle.’”

 

“Yes”

 

“But then they got sick and there was a big wave and legends say these mean monsters called the Fomori came and chased them all away. But… they didn’t all go to the same place.”

 

“No, where did they go child?”

 

“Half went north to the cities of knowledge.” The little girl’s voice droned a little as if she were reading the names. ”Falias, Gorias, Murias and…. erm…. Finias!” He caught her breathe and swallowed. “-To be with the gods and most importantly the mother god Danu. She bathed them in light and knowledge and shared with them her blood and they became the children of Danu. The Tuatha De Danann, which is you and me” She smiled.

 

Her grandfather nodded “Go on child”.

 

“The other Nemedians weren’t as lucky. They went south and were slaved and treated very badly by the dwellers of that land for hundreds of years. Those mean people made them carry huge sacks of dirt on their back from morning until night. Made to eat the worst food and live in the most horrible conditions.

 

But like the winter makes the tree bark gnarled and like iron; the children of Nemed became savage by nature. As soon as a male child was born he was thrown in a pit with hungry dogs and if the boy child didn’t kill the dogs with his bare hands, it would surely kill him.

 

Soon they became so strong growing to the size of giants they broke free of their slave masters and slaughtered them. Carrying sacks of dirt on their backs twice the size of them all the way through the desert and across the sea to the land they knew as their home Inish Alga.

 

They called themselves ‘The Firbolg’ the people of the bag after the earth that shaped this land.

 

The earth they took from that harsh realm transformed this land from craggy cliffs to a rich farmland. For a long time they cultivating the land endlessly warring amongst themselves for control of the island.

 

“Then what happened” Her grandfather smirked.

 

“Then we came” She chirped. “Although grateful to Danu for sheltering them, the Tuatha de’ never felt truly at home and longed to return to the island they left so many years ago. With the knowledge and magic given to them by Danu they set out to return to their ancestral homeland.

 

But when they got to the shore in their great flying ships the Firbolg were not happy to see them. The Tuatha pleaded that they might have only a fifth of the island to call home but the cruel king Eoichid the Prideful rejected them as he only knew war. The Firbolg didn’t know how to share the land. They didn’t know how to live in tune with nature like the Tuatha de’, seeking only to bend it to their will.

 

The Tuatha pleaded for peace with their long lost brothers but the Firbolg denied them time and time again and before long war was their only option.

 

The Tuatha were not afraid of war, they had mastered the magic of the gods and were skilled warriors. But the Firbolg were a formidable foe and they outnumbered the Tuatha ten to one. Each Firbolg almost double the size of any Tuatha de’.

 

Still they met on the field of battle and the Firbolg even with their superior numbers and even with their size and strength could not beat the Tuatha de Danann.

 

The high king Eoichid angered by this challenged Nuada king of the Tuatha to a duel to decide the fate of the isle. Knowing that he could kill Nuada with one blow. Nuada accepted and with one vicious blow Eoichid cut Nuada’s shield in half and took his arm at the root. But Nuada with the last of his strength bested the wicked high king.

 

Without their leader all the Firbolg knew was to fight and they would fight without end until they were all wiped out. In Nuada’s mercy he offered them a province all of their own so they might live. As a reward for their bravery and martial valor. They accepted and retreated to Connacht, never to be seen again. Some say a plague took them or they fled under the hills but Connacht is a strange and haunted place to this day where no Tuatha de’ dare tread.

 

King Nuada in his victory renamed the isle Inish Vale ‘The island of Destiny’ after the stone they brought with them from Finias. But Nuada could not be king because a king must be perfect and without his arm he was not fit to rule. So the crown fell to Bres the bas- the Bres the Beautiful and everyone lived happily ever after.”

 

The old man smiled and clapped his young prodigy “Well done lass, well done.”

 

She smiled and tussled her hair to take a small bow.

 

Then there was the sharp sound of fist thumping a table rife with malice.

 

“Liar” A scarred voice said.

 

“I beg your pardon?” The old man rose defiantly from his bench to scan the round house.

 

All the men were at one side of the round house pommeling and kicking the poet. The women too crowded round to geer and throw pieces of mead wet bread and cabbage at him as he lay on the sodden earthen floor in the fetal position. One of the wenches taken to wearing his grouse feather cap in jest.

 

The only other figure was a stooped cripple dressed like a druid with a long dark hood and cloak.

 

“Identify yourself stranger, who is it that calls this innocent girl a liar?”

 

“I do” A cold gravelly voice said.

 

The figure sat alone unmoving on a small round table to himself, almost unnoticeable in the darkness of the round house until now. For that was his wish.

 

The old man stood and drew a slim short sword pointing the tip down.

 

“The crows curse on you! You will stand; show me the face of the man who would call!”

 

The man didn’t move from his seat.

 

The old man angered by his silence took to his side and slammed his hand flat on the table in front of the stranger.

 

“Briseadh agus brú ar do chnámha! You will rise and give me your name cur!”

 

“Cur will do” The man said, his voice sending a chill down the spine of the old man.

 

Without cause the stranger moved like water. Without thought or pause he pinned the old man’s hand to the table with a wide oddly shaped javelin head crudely fashioned into a sword or cleaver. The head of the javelin having a rounded point like a shovel which curved into two hooking spikes. Which then recurved inward on each side creating a harsh biting cutting edge like snakes fang.

 

The blade rounded shovel point was so wide it cut right through the old man’s hand and into the table. Cutting off all his fingers above the knuckle and the tip of his thumb. His white blood poured over the ash table and over the bench and on the floor.

 

The old man staggered back wordlessly clutching his bloody hand under his armpit. The sound of his light sword dropping on the floor draw the attention of the hecklers.

 

“What’s going on here?” The man in the green tunic said.

 

The old man swallowed and tried not to vomit or pass out “Call the chieftain” He huffed.

 

“What’s this?” The man said confusedly, then he saw the blood and drew a wide broadsword in one hand.

 

“What did he do?” The stranger in the cloak asked pointing at the crowd around the poet, kicking and jeering at him.

 

The man in the green tunic tightened his jaw and flared his nostrils looking back for a moment and then back at the stranger.

 

“He insulted our kings, what of it”

 

The stranger uncovered his long sinewy arm it bulged with a vicious vile intense hatred. He squeezed his fist and the room became hot with the beating of his blood. “Give me your kings!” He said in his low gravelly scarred voice. “-Let me squeeze them in my hand!”

 

“He’s mad”

 

The old man vomited and passed out, his granddaughter loudly sobbing over him as she tried to rouse him. “Grandfather!” She cried.

 

“Here” The man in the green tunic barked at the men crowded around the poet.

 

The men craned their necks trying to see by the light of the fire pit what he was jabbering about.

 

The stooped stranger stood to his full height then, a full two feet above every man in the round house.

 

With the same hand he took his hood down and a tuathan wench turning at the wrong moment bobbed her eyes at him and let out a horrifying shriek.

 

He was completely bald, his head and eyebrows cleanly shaven. One side of his face covered in strange markings that looked like scars but seemed all too deliberate and esoteric.

 

But the thing they noticed most of all was his ears.

 

They were rounded.

 

“He’s- he’s a human!”

 

“I thought they were all dead!”

 

“You missed one” The man raised an ominous smirk.

 

The little girl lunged at the stranger with the short sword and thrust it into his gut. Half blinded by her tears she didn’t miss her mark burying the blade up to the hilt.

 

He looked down at the girl and smiled and smacked his lips kissing at her mockingly.

 

She shook letting go of the sword and stumbling backwards.

 

He laughed maniacally and pulled it out covered in his hot red blood and tossed it on the ground at the onlooker’s feet.

 

“Red”

 

“Is he a monster?“

 

“Firbolg!”

 

“Dear Deugh!”

 

“Vampire!”

 

“He should be dead!”

 

The man in the green tunic swallowed his cold feeling of dread as he watched the stab wound close by itself. The elven young lad flung himself as if dragged by the tip of his sword at the giant.

 

Cur turned faster than his size would deem possible and corked his blade from table and found it a new home in the lad’s soft skull. His face cleaved open by the wide spiked tip. His white blood and brain matter showering his kinfolk.

 

And the women wailed so.

 

The blade still buried in the lad’s face he tossed the lad like an empty sack of grain and tore his cloak from his shoulders. The man was large even for a human and was built of sinew and limestone and held together by bile and hatred. His chest heaved and his shoulders hawed but only one arm held a sword. The other was gone. Replaced only by more of the hideous scarification.

 

“He’s a cripple – all at once!” The crowd turned from the battered poet who lay bruised and bloodied and covered in piss.

 

The stranger laughed and let his tongue roll out of his mouth lapping at the air madly like a dog or a viper hungry for their blood.

 

One lurched out of the stolid pack raising a sword above his head. The odd shaped chopper swung under him fast and light and delivered a deep gaping hungry dull chop across his gut. The sound it made like an oar cutting through a wave sent shivers through the hecklers and tossed their bellies. The elf doubled over heaving, a ghastly wheezing sound coming out of his side.

 

The woman in the grouse feather cap lunged at him with a pitchfork pinning the Firbolg against the daub wall, he smiled at her with blood in his teeth. Cur snapped the haft with one powerful strike and with another he split her down the middle.

 

The other peasants dropped everything they had and ran at the sight of her bisected body.

 

“What is this?”

 

“Halt!”

 

Cur turned to the entrance and saw two heavily armored dwarves with long pikes and iron shields ready to greet him. He pulled the pitch fork head out of his guts and dropped it.

 

“You’ll come with us now!” They ordered.

 

The Firbolg threw his javelin head sword into a table. He stooped with a mocking grin and put out his one hand for them to shackle.

 

“Did I do something wrong?”

 

The one that shackled him walked him out in front of the round house; the other went inside to retrieve his strange weapon. Admiring it quizzically.

 

They walked him through the tiny village. Consisting of a smattering of stone and clay round houses surrounded by a thatched branch fence next to the Dobber river. The large round hut was communal and the smaller ones were where the families lived. The biggest round house at the fair side of the fence was where the chieftain of Tallaght lived and held court.

 

Around the village the trees and hills were a deep emerald and sparkled with dew as the sun on occasion broke through the dense grey clouds. The wind and the rain a constant steady and gentle metronome.

 

Cur smirked at a woman feeding pigs knee deep in shit. She looked up at him with abstract horror in her face. They walked him on towards the large round house, his wicked mad laughter carrying over the trees as he went.

Gage Chapter 8 ‘Day of Lords’

Blah blah blah Redania, blah blah blah, temeria, blah blah blah nilfgard, blah blah blah ciri- oh shit this isn’t the Witcher, stuff actually happens in this.

Yeah I was telling my brother about the Witcher books and he was like “Wait- you’re telling me the books came before the games?” because he likes to read books that are made as companions to games and I started to think how fucking disappointed someone who liked the games would be if they read these books, then I realised ‘oh wait, that is me’. I played the game first and fell in love with the card game and now am thoroughly bored by the book.

I’m already two thirds of the way through it and the first two thirds build up to one fight with some elves where I think Geralt kills all of one of them and then it just cuts to him on a boat hunting a sea monster which involves shitloads of exposition for a fight that lasts like a page.

It’s like this books thinks monster hunting will cramp it’s style, it just needs to use monster hunting as a plot point to spring into more boring conversations about nilfgards trade policy and temerian embargo on goods, I wish I was kidding. This book is so far up it’s own arse worldbuilding it forgot to have a plot or interesting/likeable characters. I don’t care if the kaedweni economy is suffering, I want to see Geralt kill monsters, is that too much to ask in a book about a professional monster slayer?

It sets up all these characters to ultimately do nothing with them, it’s so tedious and the conversation go on so much longer than they have to, a sentence is never enough, the characters swap huge paragraphs of dialogue and it still doesn’t seem to progress.

Ok enough of that, I was just reading it this morning and I was really excited by the sea monster fight only for it to ultimately let me down, both the fight with the elves and the sea monster fight pale in comparison to what I came to expect from the first book. The fights in that were so well detailed, frenetic but gruesomely precise, that’s what really grabbed me about the first book. A good story(despite ripping off faerie tales left and right) and strong characters punctuated by visceral action.

Any so yeah I hope you liked my first attempt bardic poetry, only took me all fucking day for four poxy stanzas haha.

I just recently stumbled on a pivotal character I was missing so I decided to do some research on celtic bards and poetry styles and bash up a poem to make a tyrant kings face red. I didn’t want to cop out like the witcher and just have everyone react to the poem or describe it vaguely but not actually have a poem in it. Well looking it over now it just sort of describes what happens and then transitions as if it was all a song sung by Dandelion the bard but it was never introduced as such and it has no rhythm or timbre and none of it rhymes or sounds like a song. So it’s like straight up prose that someone just says ‘well that was a song guise’ at the end, but it wasn’t though.

I didn’t really think of it at the time but it was kind of lazy and I was tempted to do the same thing and just say “The bard did a bad poem, made the king mad” but I just thought it would be more authentic and more fun to actually write a fucking poem haha, I mean I’m a writer right? That’s what I do. And sometimes things present themselves, you have the easy way or the right way and at every turn I’ve taken the hard road and felt better for it.

So hopefully today I can finish the chapter breakdown and actually start this bad boy tomorrow, I’m so fucking nervous and excited. I can’t wait and I’m dreading getting out of bed haha. I must have played the first scene out in my head a million times and each time it gets better and better and I can feel it like I’m in the room but I know when I start I’m going to have to do more research as I go and choose a location because I haven’t mapped the story out yet in terms of it’s geography (always sucked at geography, and grammar). I have a map, I have the rough story outline so tomorrow I’ll start thinking about locations and scenery and stuff like that to set it and then keep and start it off right.

Ok so enough waffling, got a chapter breakdown to finish and a lawn to mow haha.

See you…

A crack of thunder shook the whole house to its foundation, the sound of breaking glass and splintering wood. The yelping of inhuman creatures, their tongues clacking dry. Then another volt from the heavens and another and the scratching footsteps stopped. Only the creaking remained and a quiet mewling yelping noise and the sounds of heavy feet stomping down on the thin wooden boards.

The boys were frozen, scared stiff staring up at the ceiling their guns shaking in their hands. Then the footsteps started up again and the floor boards creaked again and the boys tensed up aiming their weapons at the boards.

The footsteps got closer to the trapdoor now and it was suddenly flung open. The boys shook training their weapons on the opening as a shaft of light and dust billowed in. But no form came through the opening just the light and the dust and every nature sound that could fill a godlessly long minute.

Then something was tossed like a sack down the stairs and the trap door was closed up again with a slamming force plunging the boys back into darkness. The boys almost fell over themselves to see what it was and then it move a little and they thought to fire but it was too dark. Jameson lit the lamp again and it was some odd mass of something, dark mat hair.

Then the thing uncoiled and sprang away from the light like a huge rat and the boys shrunk away terrified.

“Ya killed ma paw and ma maw and all my brothers.” The voice was a vicious and guttural whisper like it was pushed passed the tusks of a boar. “Now imma kill you dead”.

The thing was fast and it leapt out of the shadows and swept a clawed hand at the lamp knocking it into the dirt plunging them back into the darkness.

The eyesight of the lug akin to a beasts made darkness little more than an obstacle to them, whats more their other senses were much keener than a humans.

“Jaysus” Shaun sputtered.

“Shhh” Clarke cautioned.

The cellar was black as pitch and quiet as a graveyard, then there was a scratching noise. The sound of tendons coiling and then it leapt out of the dark and attached itself to McDonald. He swung it around with his mighty arms and pinned it to the wall of the cellar with his forearm. And he went to work on it’s underbelly with the brass knuckles keeping it’s jaws away from his face. “Sunovabitch” He shouted.

The things arms and legs were pressed by McDonalds body. But his wriggling was vicious and he cut and clawed and pawed at McDonalds arms and legs biting into his flesh but Mcdonald held him there. “Would someone please shoot this bastard?”

“Sure” Clarke said as he pressed the barrel of his rifle under it’s chin and fired. The flash lit the floor of the cellar up for a brief second before plunging it into darkness again and filling it with the smell of gunpowder.

The boys gathered themselves and slowly and cautiously made their way to the trapdoor. After at least ten or twenty minutes of listening to the still silence upstairs. They finally decided they’d face whatever was up there waiting for them rather than be starved out.

Jameson was first, he tossed the trapdoor aside with one hand. He steadied himself against the floor aiming the schofield around the room and back at the entrance to the store but both were clear.

He climbed all the way out followed by the others who filled the room slowly and quietly. He quickly threw open the doors to the bed room and tossed the schofield around the corners finding nothing.

He came away from there as they stood in the kitchen “It’s clear” He whispered.

Shaun made a little whistling noise and pointed at the door into the store front. Clarke sidled along against the door jam and nudged the door open with the barrel of his rifle.

McDonald came in low with his revolver and angled himself around the door so he could see what was there.

“You can come on out on now” They heard a familiar voice boom in the store front. “They’re all dead.”

Jameson gripped his schofield tighter and bounced into the storefront and stopped dead. As he saw Gage standing there covered in blood and fur below the waist. Some scratches on his face and hands, teethmarks on his boots.

The bodies of the other three half-lugs lay strewn around the store like some macabre tableau. One bent over one of the racks with all his spine showing. Another collapsed in the corner turned on his side allowing his brains to tumble out. And the other cut clean in half below the waist and looked like it crawled aways before it died leaving a clawed bloody trail.

“Let’s go” He said.

The boys took whatever they could carry and brought it back to stash it at the whorehouse with plans to come back for the rest later. Once they found a place to put it all.

They eventually had to bury a lot of it to retrieve later, that way it couldn’t be found if any convoys came idly by.

The food they found wasn’t much but the old man had suggested that there was a town nearby. Where he most likely got the bulk of his food.

The boys went back to that outpost and burnt it to the ground with some lamp oil. They burnt all the bodies separately on a pire until there was no trace left of them. Any passing convoys would just see a burnt out building and think it was struck my lightning or a gang of luggers that had somehow discovered fire.

After some preparation and some advanced scouting by O’Shaughnesy and Clarke. Clarke spotting from the outside and O’Shaugnesy talking to some of the locals they learnt everything they needed to know about the town and more. The power and comms that was the first thing they’d strike, crippling the towns infrastructure was the first step to taking it.

If they could shut off the tubescope delivering those pleasing numbing theta waves. They had a chance of convincing the people or failing that using force. Gage had absolutely no qualms at this point about killing his own people or forcing them to save themselves.

He was more than aware that humans hadn’t the faintest idea what was best for them and had been subverted far beyond the means for rational discussion. If he had to he’d use terror and violence to save them from themselves and he’d kill those that refused to fight at his side to save the human race.

“You’re out of your mind Gage, you know that?” Doctor Westwood spat, his face drenched in sweat his voice cutting through thick silence of McClusky’s bar. “You’d replace tyranny with tyranny where there is none. In your vision you’d tear this world apart just to be rid of a race that bares you no ill will, do you not see that this is the product of a sick mind?” Westwood was shaking as he spoke “Come with me and you have a chance at having a normal life, we can help yo-“.

Gage fired at the tubescope hanging over the bar blowing it to smithereens.

Westwood froze in terror grabbing his ears. Then scuttling his fat hands for his pistol on the table holding it low looking at Gage with wide eyes “You’re out!” He said almost like he was asking permission.

He got cooler and calmer and smiled and said “Destroying those will do no good. There’s a hundred more where they came from even if they did what you claimed they do.” As he said it the power went out, the loud tubescopes and their megaphones outside shut off and the streets were silent. “Cute trick, but you can’t save this town from itself” He said reclaiming some of his confidence as he fingered his gun with his sweaty palm. “Not by yourself”

“I’m not by myself”

Westwood swallowed “You’re out, you fired three times now, I have you, you’re coming with me!”

“I’m not going with you” Gage said as he raised his gun to Westwood’s head.

“You think I’m stupid, you want me to kill you where you sit, is that it?” He sputtered, his vision narrowing and focusing on the three barrels of the gun pointed at him. And then he focused hard on it and noticed something strange in the middle of the three wide shotgun barrels.

“Not today.”

Westwood squinted as it caught the light and he shuddered at the realisation of what it was – another barrel.

 

Continued here

Day of Lords

 

 

 

Bres the Bastard

Fair of face and noble birth,

None the wiser of his worth,

His guests they gather with tale-

Knives un-greased, tongues await ale.

 

Find his Father nor his stock,

Whereforth come those golden locks?

In his hold he’ll bare no bard.

Nor gold shared, as times hence hard.

 

Our champions collect wood,

Where a worldly battle once stood.

We pay his levvies and fines.

You may your piece and me mine;

 

Without promptly a full plate,

Without cows milk a calf sate.

Without hearth in darkest night,

Without mirth’s coin for my plight.

 

– Let that be Bres’s condition.

 

 

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