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post apocalypse

3 Ring Samurai Part 2 Chapter 7 ‘4 Sho Sho’

Bonjour,
Back again with more half assery as it is the season, I couldn’t do a blog on tuesday because I was busy and I cobbled together another haiku from a song I like. I don’t know why, I guess I’m just too lazy to come up with them on my own or maybe I just worry I’ll retread too much material and sometimes I can just find a song that captures everything I feel better than I could on my own. Also the rhythm really helps.
This is probably the last blog I’ll do til january, because I’ll be busy with work and christmas and because I haven’t had time to write on top of editing Diana for the last time. So I’m running low on material.
Although I was spent most of the day spamming mythology pages on fb of which I’m not banned on currently haha. I got some good feedback, I was called an ‘excellent bard’ haha. That pleased me. Probably the best people to drop that on. Especially since Celtic folklore gets so little love from literary folk obsessed with greeks and vikings.
Work has been hell, my personal life isn’t so bad apart from the other stuff, where my heart is heaviest. But I think next year things might really turn around. I’m gonna get a new job and if one of my books gets picked up that’d be great.
Had little time to read but what I’ve read of the second shadow pulp is pretty good. The shadow is at the very least really good filler, which I guess is the meaning of pulp. It’s not great but it’s not bad, like I’m not desperate to see what happens next but it holds my interest enough to want to keep reading. The writing isn’t amazing either, just serviceable. But maybe sometime soon I might write a shadow pulp myself. I do really like the shadow and how he’s written. Every appearance is meant to send a shiver up your spine and it really works. When he shows up everything changes, it’s great.
Still playing red dead 2 and I plan on doing a review, the game is just long and honestly pretty boring. It’s like the story and characters really aren’t very engaging. And it’s a prequel so you basically already know what’s going to happen you just don’t know exactly how. I honestly felt like the story of Assassins creed 3 was more compelling. I’m not kidding, that game had a good story. You knew your goals and motivations, and your villain and it felt personal and real. Red dead is a scattered mess, the story meanders and goes nowhere ultimately. Ha don’t want to spoil my review, but I think it’s one of those games that will be forgotten in a month. And if it hadn’t launched in between the shit storm kicked up by fallout 76 and battlefront v it would have got a lot more flack.
It’s shaping up to be an ok christmas, a little melancholy slipping in for reasons I can’t say but I have enough booze to wash that away this year, here’s hoping for some resolution next year.
To all the one and a half people that read this blog, merry christmas and a happy new year!
See you…
 
BOOM!
 
A cannonball turned the rest of the saloon into confetti showering Canard and Efron with debris.
 
Efron shook her red mop for debris and dust, coughed and looked up at Canard. She handed him the gun “It’s up to you I guess.”
 
He took it and let it hang at his side as he watched Pookie narrowly dodge a wrecking shot at his feet.
 
Pookie had taken to running along the rooftops for cover. Unfortunately the brothers were a lot more agile than their size had initially suggested.
 
The oldest stayed below from his firing position, arching up like a mortar, the middle brother followed Pookie up on to the rooftops.
 
The middle brother retracted and spat the wrecking ball at Pookie’s feet tearing huge chunks out of the roof of the building. A bemused post nuclear family sat around a scrappy dinner table looking through their new skylight.
 
“Err sorry” Pookie said.
 
But before he could react he heard the chain tighten, the middle brother swinging it by biting down on it and turning his hips and shoulders.
 
The ball slammed into Pookie’s gut and tossed him off the building. Luckily he landed on his head and was totally fine.
 
Pookie rolled onto his back, dazed from the first strike he looked up at the sun which had peaked and was slowly going down, the sky a bruised orange colour. The middle brother smirked and swung the ball over her is shoulder and muttered to himself “For Juan”. With all his abdominal strength he turned and swung the wrecking ball at a downward angle, meaning to crush Pookie like a bug.
 
Meanwhile the oldest brother circled around and was coming at him from the other side. Aiming right at him.
 
Pookie was unable to move, looking up at the sky as the ball eclipsed the sun coming right at him like a comet just coming over the pivot point of the swing.
 
A shot rang out and the chain snapped freeing the wrecking ball which shot off careening towards the eldest brother. The ball lodging itself with some force into the barrel of the cannon just as it was about to fire.
 
There was a deathly pause and then internal indigestion noises. A bead of sweat ran down the eldest brother’s brow right before the cannon backfired and tore him in half like a piñata full of sausage meat. The entire cannon exited his body taking most of his internal organs with it and leaving an exit wound the size of an elephant’s foot.
 
Another silence, the smell of cordite, Canard stood, feet planted holding the gun in his outstretched hand. “Why did I?-oh” He said as he looked at his hand and saw two smaller hands wrapped around it.
 
Efron smirked as she sat curled around Canard’s shoulder.
 
“What if the chamber was empty?”
 
“I would have fired again” She laughed as she climbed down off of Canard.
 
But her laughing was cut short. The moment her feet hit the ground a broken chain wrapped around her leg and yanked her like a tiny side of beef, dragging her through the loose dirt and sand.
 
Pookie groaned as he raised himself onto his side only able to watch as Efron was reeled in like a carp flopping on the ground.
 
The Middle brother slurping on the chain like someone sucking a giant piece of spaghetti with a huge unwilling meatball on the end.
 
It all happened so fast, Canard barely had enough time to react. He went for his staff but before he could even flick the blade out Efron was in the middle brother’s mouth with chain wrapped around her. The middle brother devoured her inch by inch, his jaw stretched wide like an anaconda.
 
Canard was so stunned for a second he forgot he was missing a leg and tripped when he took the staff away as a support falling face first into the dirt. It was like he was wading through custard, like it was all happening in slow motion for some reason.
 
He recomposed himself and tried to get to his feet.
 
The middle brother let out a vicious chuckle which was muffled by the person in his mouth. He put one finger over his left nostril and shot out a couple of giant buggers which hit the ground and exploding into a cloud of smoke.
 
Canard instinctually froze like a deer in headlights until the smoke finally cleared revealing him to be alone with a very sore clown.
 
“What just happened?”
 
“Nothing good” Pookie mumbled.
 
“What do we do, go after him?”
 
Pookie got to his feet groaned and said. “Nah.”
 
 
“Gosh darn it, I’m too late!” The dog faced boy cursed under his breath as he peeped through the little hole in the big top. The one he chastised Margherite for looking through only a couple of chapters ago.
 
The sun was going down, the meeting was emptying out. The heads of the clans going back to their little pieces of turf leaving only the icecream man and the Ringmaster alone in the big top. His icecream van was his home so he didn’t need to go anywhere.
 
When they were alone, he put his feet up on the table and grinned.
 
“So”
 
“So what?”
 
“Want me to ice’im?” He laughed.
 
The Ringmaster said nothing.
 
The icecream man laughed “It’d be poetic, don’t you think?” He chuckled.
 
“He’s more use to me alive” The ringmaster said coldly.
 
“Oh so this was part of your master plan all along?” He smirked a little too wide, his lips were thin and cold looking almost non-existent, two thin bloody streaks on an icicle.
 
“Something like that” The Ringmaster smiled jovially, but not with his eyes, his eyes were fixed and issued a silent threat.
 
The icecream man let out a little breathy laugh and took his feet off the table. “Don’t you forget, you owe me” He stood and looked around the big top. “All this is cos of what I done for you” He leaned forward on the table. “And it can all go away like that”. He clicked his bony fingers.
 
“Are you threatening me?” The Ringmaster asked.
 
He smiled trying to look innocent, shrugging his shoulders “Just reminding is all.” The icecream man laughed and started to walk away. “Now if you’ll excuse me, those kiddies aint gonna get the sweet stuff theyselves”.
 
He climbed into the cab of the icecream truck, the suspension straining under him. That tinkling off key music started up again with the engine as he slowly drove away.
 
The dogfaced boy had no idea what was going on but watched as the Ringmaster sneered and spat on the ground, cursing silently.
 
“What the heck was all that about?” He whispered to himself.
 
 
If you liked this chapter head on over to inkitt to read the rest of it and the previous chapters. 4 sho sho

3 ring samurai part 2 Chapter 6 ‘The long way of drums’

Hey there time for some excuses from a really lazy dude with no real life to speak of.
Yeah so no poem tomorrow, I don’t know just personal life stuff and work stuff getting in the way and likely to get in the way until january.
I’m just in a really weird place which is not too different from any other day. I just feel kind of like I’m drifting, not really sure what I want to do, instantly bouncing between manic happiness and basement depression. Because I’m like in this place where I’m not only losing lots of time due to work and other such nonsense but also I feel like I’m making the best use of the time I have and it’s driving me fucking nuts. I want to finish the edit for Diana and take my time going over it but I also just want to get it the fuck done and stuff keeps getting in the way.
And then the cloud of looming doubt comes back telling me I’m never going to get it done and even if I do it’s going to suck and no one is going to like it or pick it up and I’m just going to be a loser sitting in my bath robe writing nonsense no one is ever going to read and have nothing to offer any other living person ever in my life. Ultimately dying alone and miserable after wasting my life chasing a dream I know is impossible.
Fuck I hate christmass haha.
Also didn’t get to read any more shadow pulps and I still can’t review red dead 2 because I have no real desire to play it. I mean I get on it for a couple of hours but I just find myself sort of not really drawn to it. I mean I like the world, the gameplay is great but the story is a fucking dead weight, the characters aside from Arthur are a little flat. The villains are a little lame. It just sort of feels like a safe easy game they made that they knew would make money and didn’t put much more effort into over the lighting and graphics and stuff like that. I mean it’s good it just sort of lacks the heart of the previous games that makes you want to get into it. And I wonder if it’s because I heard that their game development is run like a sweat shop, that they’re just churning this game out as fast as possible, I dunno. I just don’t find it that compelling or necessary. Like the title says it all, you have the first game Red dead and then red dead redemption and then this is just red dead redemption 2 not red dead revolution, red dead revenge, red dead revocation, its just red dead here’s another one give us money please.
Don’t get me wrong, I like it, I think it’s fun at times, I love robberies, I think it’s got solid mechanics and costumes and all that, I just think it didn’t really deliver on hype and maybe the hype was too high. Not really from me because I didn’t expect much, I wasn’t a huge fan of the first game, I’m a niche retard who thinks L.A Noire is still the best rockstar but we’re never getting a sequel to that or Max Payne for a while, although I heard a bully sequel is coming out which would be great. It’s basically Gta as a coming of age story for a highschool kid haha. It’s great.
Yeah well those are some thoughts for the day, enjoy the new chapter and sub to my mailing list because it gives me warm happy feelings.
See you…
 
“I’m sorry about your brother” The stranger said as he poked at the small fire in the centre of the darkened shack. One knee raised, a sword behind it resting against the wall.
 
“Juan was a fool, always rushing in headlong.” The first born said, a large tanned Mexican with a barrel chest and a pencil thin moustache.
 
“When he heard about the man you wanted us to kill, he wanted all the glory for himself, he got what he deserved.” The second born said, almost as large as his brother sporting a goatee.
 
“We won’t fail you” The firstborn said.
 
The man at the fire lifted his head, the light from the flickering flames licked the strange acrylic clown mask on his face. “I admire your pragmatism, I know what it’s like to lose a brother.” He said.
 
 
Click, click!
 
“Wait Pookie! You’re only supposed to pull the trigger once per turn!” Efron squealed as she reached for the gun. “Why?” Pookie said with the gun still to his head “This is faster”
 
“Its not ab- Nevermind” Efron frowned.
 
Pookie put the gun down on the table and slid it over to Canard who was completely devoid of expression.
 
“Ok now just on-“
 
Before she could finish Canard had already put the gun to his head.
 
Click click! “-ce! What did I just say, now there are only two chambers left so it’s a fifty fifty chance that the next chamber has the bullet in it.”
 
“And it’s your turn” Canard grinned as he slid the revolver across the table.
 
Pookie’s face stayed the same as he picked up the gun concentrating on the chamber, emptying it with his mind. Breathing in deeply and tensing his finger around the trigger.
 
KATHOOOOMMM!!!!!
 
A giant wrecking ball crashed through the window and tore a giant hole through the thin walled saloon. The walls splintered like kindling sending glass, wood and shards of metal shrapnel everywhere.
 
The giant wrecking rested in the destruction attached to a chain which snaked on the ground. Slowly the chain retracted and then quickly whipped away taking half the building with it.
 
Pookie coughed as he cleared his lungs of dust and looked around the saloon that now looked like an apple with a giant bite taken out of it.
 
He looked around.
 
“Everyone ok?”
 
“Great” Canard said from underneath the booth seat he was only a minute ago sitting on.
 
A little hand with a gun in it came up from behind the bar “I’m ok” Efron said.
 
The bartender, a balding middle aged man with an unflattering haircut popped up next to her “What the hell was that, a hurricane?”
 
“Yeah, hale stones the size of your head.” Pookie shook his head like there was dust in it and got up off the ground dizzily looking for his sword. He found it underneath a pile of old magazines from a broken spinning rack.
 
“A little help for the cripple?” Canard voice muffled by the furniture on top of it.
 
Pookie sighed and attempted to push the couch off of him.
 
“IF THERE’S ANYONE STILL ALIVE IN THERE YOU’VE GOT TO THE COUNT OF THREE TO COME OUT!” A booming voice with the slight twang of a spanish accent said.
 
“I guess that’s for us” Pookie said as he strained with the couch.
 
Just for you, I’m guessing” Canard retorted.
 
Pookie sighed and dropped the couch back on him. “I guess so” He said with a melancholy tone in his voice as he went to climb out of the hole in the side of the saloon.
 
Outside it was hotter than before, the sun was bright and glaring blotted out only by two round figures standing in the middle of the street.
 
Pookie walked out squinting at them.
 
“You’re him”
 
“The man who killed our brother”
 
“Who?”
 
“Juan Ramirez”
 
“Oh that guy, well that was kind of an accident, but yeah I guess that was me” He sighed “So you’re the masters of swallowing or whatever huh?”
 
“That’s us” The first born said.
 
“So you really think they’ll let you in the circus if you kill me? It’s not all it’s cracked up to be.”
 
“It’s more than that now”. The second said.
 
“There’s a blood debt to pay.”
 
“So hows this gonna go down? We gonna duel one on one like last time?” Pookie asked.
 
“Hahahahahahahahahaha!” Both brothers laughed.
 
The brother with the goatee didn’t laugh with his voice only his face as his throat started to bulge to an enormous size like a toad. His jaw unhinged and a giant black ball appeared in his mouth.
 
Pookie squinted in disbelief as he watched this inhuman display. There followed a grotesque suction popping cracking noise as the wrecking was spat with a tremendous speed.
 
The ball hit like a meteor right at Pookie’s feet. The clown samurai jumped at the last second and under the cover of the dust it kicked up he ran along the chain towards the two assassins.
 
His sword at his side, his finger in the ring pull.
 
“There he is!” The second born said his voice sounding like he had cotton balls in his mouth.
 
The first born cut off his laughter, his eyes bulging and bloodshot. He opened his mouth and started to wretch, his throat distending with a long spherical shape. The opening in his mouth a pitch black emptiness.
 
Pookie caught sight of it in the corner of his eye but couldn’t make out what it was and then at once he knew he was staring into the barrel of a cannon.
 
“Oh crap” He whispered.
 
The firstborn leaned forward to ready for the recoil and somehow through some internal mechanism he fired.
 
Time slowed and Pookie saw the chain shot swirling at him, a ball connected by a thin chain swirling destruction aimed right at him. Without thinking he pulling the ripcord on his sword and it roared with laughter cutting the chain in half. The cut freed the two balls which shot off at either side of him.
 
One of the balls hit the ground and exploded with a dull thud. The other took out a storefront, both explosions bouncing Pookie like a skipping stone, skidding along the ground.
 
He came to a stop, his naked sword in his hand quivering. The clown samurai stabbed it into the ground raising himself to a knee, breathing heavily.
 
“Interesting” The firstborn said. “You’re the first to survive that”.
 
“What are you made out of, rubber?” The second born asked.
 
“He’s too dumb to die” Canard said.
 
Pookie scowled as he scraped himself off the ground.
 
Efron giggled, “It’s still your turn”.
 
“Can’t ya see I’m a little busy right now?” Pookie shouted.
 
“Are you forfeiting?” Efron sounded shocked.
 
That weird suction noise again ending the brief pause as the wrecking ball came barrelling at Pookie again. He rolled out of its way as it carved a hideous scar into the earth. “I’ll just skip my turn and get the next one.”
 
“That’s not how it works!”
 
“Hmm, but that means if this chamber is empty the next one has to be the bullet.” Canard scratched his chin, weighing his options.
 
“So if you live-“ Efron looked away.
 
“He dies”
 
 
Read the rest of the chapter on inkitt. The long way of drums

3 Ring Samurai part 2 Chapter 5 ‘The lost highway’

Ok well at least you couldn’t say my week was boring, went from being on top of the world to being under it, straight up into space and right now I’m falling fast, but that I’m used to haha.
Needless to say everything blew up in my face as it usually does because I fell in love with someone who can never leave well enough alone just like myself. And when they push I push back twice as hard as is my nature, not to be out done when it comes to being a stubborn prick.
It goes without saying that my life is a fucking joke and no one should try and emulate it haha. At the very least I’m less lonely than Lovecraft but that’s not saying much and loneliness would probably help me more than harm me. Relationships only seem to be a hindrance and a time sink when it comes to my work, filler, if you will.
Well I’m cutting that shit right out, that is until someone else comes along to fuck it all up again haha. Can’t wait -_-.
Speaking of my work for a nice segue, finally I have the final piece of Diana and I have diverted all efforts to putting the lady back together again. So I’m putting Loverman writing on hold for the time being and focusing totally on editing and proofreading and the eventual debut of Diana to agents here and in the US. I’m still gonna put out regular chapters of completed work like 3 ring and Cur but Diana must take precedent because that is the real deal. Not all my eggs are in here basket but enough of them to make me nervous so here’s hoping to the first big step on the this journey I’ve undertaken so many years ago now.
(Insert one hour of looking for pictures of clowns) Sigh.
Ok better stop talking about it and get on with it, all those rejection letters aren’t gonna write themselves.
See you…
Achoo! Pookie rubbed his red nose and looked around the saloon sleepily amazed how similar it looked to the one in the town he just escaped from.
“Ya know, they say when you sneeze it means people are talking about ya” Canard said as he sat opposite him in a booth whittling a piece of wood.
“What are you whittling?” Efron asked.
Canard smirked “You’ll just have to wait and se-“
He was suddenly cut off by the weird dog thing Garfield biting the end of the bit of wood and fighting to take it.
“Hey ya dumb whatever ya are! Let go” He said as he tugged at the bit of wood the dog was gnawing on “Ahh you’re drooling on it!”
Efron hid her snickering behind her hand.
“What are you laughing at?” He said.
“You’re funny” She said.
“Yeah I’m hilarious, would you buzz off kid, go play or something” He said shooing her away.
Efron giggled childlishly and disappeared from sight.
He turned around in his seat furrowing his brow and cocking out his lower lip. “That’s better, I think you and me need to talk some more”
Pookie sniffled not looking at him “About what?” he said petulently.
“About what we do next?”
“’We’ there is no ‘we’, I don’t owe you nothing.” Pookie said in a disinterested way.
“I saved your life back there” Canard had an easy meaningless smile.
“I don’t remember that” Pookie raised an eyebrow and waved his hand away.
“Yeah back in the cave- nevermind, it’s not important, what’s important is we need to find someone who can look at that weird mark on the kid and tell us what it means?” He said emphatically, his movements overcooked exaggerations like he’d put too much thought into them.
“Why do we need to that?” Pookie asked with his eyes closed.
“To propel the plot dummy”
Pookie blinked.
“I know a mutual friend of ours who might know something.” He spoke a little softer and seemed to lean forward.
“What’s in it for you if we take her to see this guy?” Pookie reclined in his seat with his arms folded and his eyes half open.
He looked around before leaning in more “I owe her”
“I don’t get it.” Pookie sighed.
“The guy owes me a favour, if we can find him maybe he can hook the kid up and we can part ways.” Canard almost whispering now.
Pookie sneezed again.
“Or we could just kill eachother” Canard said letting a little ice slide into his voice as he leaned all the way back in his seat.
Pookie’s eyes narrows and his fingers crawled closer to his sword that was resting under the table between his legs.
Canard eyed him and gripped his whittling knife firmly.
“Hey!”
They both turned to see Efron pointing her gun at them “You promised you wouldn’t kill eachother!” A look on her face like someone was turning the car around not going to get icecream.
They looked at eachother “No we didn’t” They both said in unison.
“Yeah you did, when we were in that cave and I saved you from the zombies and there was like a cave in. And we thought it was all over but then the leader was all alive and like ‘I’m gonna get you rawr’ and I shot him and saved you both”. She said in a matter fact chipper way rising at the end as if expecting applause.
Literally none of that happened” Pookie said as he rubbed his nose.
Canard just shook his head.
“So you’re just gonna kill eachother, that’s pretty boring” She huffed stomping her feet.
“You got a better idea?” Pookie asked cocking his head to one side.
“I just might” Efron said. She quickly cracked open the revolver and proceeded to empty the shells into her dress which she held out at the bottom to catch them. When she was done she snapped the heavy chamber back into place. “There’s one bullet in this gun, you each take turns pulling the trigger at your own head until one of you blows your brains out.” She said throwing the gun on the table like it was a chew toy. “But if neither of you are dead after four turns you have to both be my bodyguards for life, deal?”
“Ey esse’ I challenge you to a duel hombre!”
“Who me?” Efron said starry eyed “What’s a duel?”
“No not you!” The stranger said “This gringo with the funny face!” The man said as he pointed at Pookie who looked like he was going to sneeze again.
They turned to look at the stranger, a rotund Mexican of average height wearing a sombrero and a flannel shirt with imitation snake skin boots. A big ridiculous moustache on his face, his smile sporting what looked like gold teeth.
He waited for them to say something but they just continued to stare at the odd character waiting for him to burtst into song.
“Ahem, allow me to introduce myself. I am Juan Sandwich phillysub Ramirez of the infamous Ramirez brothers, known as the masters of swallowing. Surely you’ve undoubtedly heard of us” He said smirking and putting on a posher accent trying to sound like zorro or something.
Efron, Pookie and Canard all looked at him and shook their heads.
“Nomatter, after I kill the wasteland famous Pookie the clown, killer of a thousand men. My name will live on forever.”
“Look guy, we kinda just got done with a wacky misadventure so can you just buzz off and come back later?” Pookie sighed.
“-Long ago when we were very young we dreamed of being in the circus, fame and fortune, travel and the women-”
“He’s already doing an anime backstory monologue” Canard said dryly. “Is this what I sounded like?”
“Ah crap” Pookie said. “Come on buddy can you give us the cliff notes?”
“Huh?” Juan froze his lips pursed, sweat beading on his forehead, totally dumbstruck by the heckling.
“Summarize” Canard said.
Juan cleared his throat and began to speak plainly, all the theatrics drained from him. “Me and my brothers were rejected by the Ringmaster because he said our act wasn’t original enough. But, if I kill you he’ll have to let us in and then we’ll be super famous and get all the chicks.”
“Thanks.”
“De nada.”
Pookie looked around the table and back at Juan and sighed. “Ok, lets get this over with I guess.”
“That’s what she said” Juan remarked.
Canard looked at him shaking his head “You’re a terrible character.”
Read the rest of the chapter on inkitt The lost highway

3 Ring Samurai Part 2 Chapter 4 ‘Imaginary Folklore’

Yo,

I actually planned to and wrote a review for battlefield 1 for yesterday but it was so dull and pointless I just didn’t post it, insert rant about modern gaming haha. Basically sums up what I thought of it. It was ok, considering I paid nothing for it.

Good news just got back the second to last piece of Diana and the last piece is on it’s way, our baby gonna be whole and beautiful soon enough. Then I can make the final changes, get her looking good and get her ready to shake her ass for some literary agents which in all likelihood will be all be women haha. True fact about literary agents, the gatekeepers of the industry, most of them are women. But then again most book readers today are women I think.
Well that is you see a lot of books targeting women specifically. Mostly about sex with vampires or werewolves or handsome rich guys haha. Kinda makes me wonder why that is, when did our culture move away from men reading books? What am I talking about? I literally started this blog mentioning the reason, it’s fucking videogames of course and movies and tv obviously. Fucking videogames killed men’s desire to read, goddamn it haha.

Well maybe that was when videogame stories were half decent, now they’re either totally ass or non-existent. The non gamers are probably off watching netflix or sport. But the thing is for me, my love of books really cushioned the blow for shitty videogame stories. I never really expect much from a games story and don’t care if it doesn’t even have one, in fact I prefer it. Because if I want a good story, there’s one waiting for me in a book. In the same respect if I want to see shitty cgi and explosions I go watch a marvel movie haha.

If you go looking for good stories in a videogame you will be disappointed. Even so we see novelists working with games developers to make decent stories and captivating world like the guy that wrote the metro novels which spawned the awesome metro games and yes I will be preordering the next instalment haha. Probably, if I’m not broke still when it comes out. Spent the last of my money, i.e the banks money on the last round of editing for D. If I work all through christmas I might be able to eat sometime late january haha.

To a lesser extent the witcher, though I won’t get into that because I fucking hate the witcher books with a passion and the writer is such a jackass. The games are great, they really elevate his boring overrated writing but the asshat is still suing them for more money despite the fact he thought they would fail so didn’t opt in for royalties, he just took a cash lump sum I guess. But of course now it’s like the hottest game of the decade he’s all in wanting his cut. If you read any of his books you’d be utterly disgusted by this.

They turned his boring slog into a living world full of interesting folklore and action and memorable interesting characters and GWENT! Holy of holies. I just saw they released a gwent rpg card game and I had hold myself to resist buying it at full price.

In other news the Parker book I’m reading has got lit, it’s pretty good, like it’s all out war at this point where Parker enlisted an army of his old heist buddies to take this mob town apart. Just gutting it of money, they take like a quarter mil in one night which is awesome. But the heists are a little too easy honestly, it’s nice but the hard stuff is coming and I can’t wait.

Anyhoo, gotta get back to work, got a new piece of my lovely lady Diana to clean up and I have to prioritise that obviously.

See you…

A dry morning wind lashed at the dusty emptiness of the wasteland as the sounds of muted activity echoed over all the stark nothing. The ambience of a frail egg shell headache, a morn after the night before, everyone tip toeing around busily packing up their lives. Still cool and dank but the sun bright and blinding coming up over another centuries old pile of garbage in the distance.

A slight figure blotted out that bright sun and cast an angular shadow on the side of a circus tent. One of the boys taking it down turned his scruffy dirty face in the direction of the shadow maker. He squinted with his hand attempting to block out the sun, a strange blinking collar around his neck.

“Mornin’” The young carny said as if it were a phrase buttoned to his tattered coveralls. He squinted harder trying to make out the figure. Rubbing his eyes as strange images of malformed birds filled his mind and he saw a grotesque heron mask. “Oh lady Hero, I didn’t know it-“

“The Ringmaster, where is he?”

“Oh, the boss, he’s-he’s still up in the big top, they’re getting ready to pull it next.”

“Thank you” Heron said flatly, slowly walking in the direction the boy gesticulated to.

The boy nervously returned to his tinkering, loosening the ties on the tent and scratching under his bomb collar.

Heron walked in between the stalls, more carny’s tinkering away to dismantle and pack away games and rides. All so they could move on to the next town, she could feel them they trying not to look directly at her.

“Hows tricks bird girl?” A voice mocked.

Heron looked coldly out of the corner of her eye, the voice came from a tall gaunt figure leaning out the window of his icecream van. He laughed and stared with his sharp dagger like beady eyes as he smoked from the corner of his mouth letting ash hit the counter without a care.

She turned her head to the front and continued saying nothing.

The Icecream man laughed and watched her go tapping ash out the window.

At the foot of the big top the dogfaced boy sat sullenly falling in and out of consciousness.

Upon seeing her he decided to be awake and quickly bound over to her.

“Ya bring me anything?” He said.

“Not this time, the big man in here?” Heron said.

“Yeah, he and Tanner are arguing about how the mutant sea lions are kept again, it’s really boring.”

“I see” She said as she patted him on the head and went on through into the big top.

Inside it was even cooler without the sun, the smell was so familiar; woodchips and blood and vomit and piss. Death and life, love and hate, there was nothing that wasn’t under this big top.

Heron looked up at the rigging, staring at it without knowing why, for a moment she couldn’t take her eyes off the tightrope.

Then remembering her purpose she pushed on into the ring.

As she was fortold the Ringleader was having a heated discussion with Tanner the animal tamer.

The Ringleader was a large man with a round belly but without hint of sagging. His roundness was almost perfect and complete, spherical and tightly packed, as if he were a baseball that could tuck in his arms and legs and roll away. But attached to the baseball were strong ropey arms and legs and a head he used to hold an oversized black top hat. His face always carrying the merest hint of a jovial smile betraying a wicked set of eyes which poked into every corner. He stroked and twirled his vaudeville mustache as he gestured wildly with his free hand.

“My good man, you realise these ‘creatures’ of yours cost an arm and a leg to feed, quite literally. I simply cannot afford any more lavish accomodations for them and certainly can’t spare the water to give them a dipping pool.”

“But you don’t understand, the heat is worse than ever this year, they’re going crazy, they need a way to cool off.” Tanner said as he stooped. Tanner was a large man with soft eyes, a lover of animals and wildly homicidally protective the particular species he’d trained from birth.

A rather unusual species of sea dwelling creatures that had with the drying of the oceans evolved to live on land. Undoubtedly with the help of the rampant radioactive fallout after the first war. One of the creatures playfully practised a routine where it would stand to attention on a podium. Then accused criminals would be dropped from the rigging for him to catch and eat. In this instance a side of beef or some other indistinguishable meat was dropped. The huge thing lumbered into position on the podium wobbling back and forth comically.

The creatures were huge twice maybe three times the size of a human. Scaly shiney skin but rough and course like sand paper. They had huge heads with large teeth and tusks but oddly reptilian features, with clawed hands ridged flippers for digging in the sand.

The ringmaster looked the creature over. The creature almost seemed to be trained to beg and look as cute as a giant reptilian mutant man eater could.

The meat was dropped and in an instant the creature timed it’s movements perfectly and snapped the meat out of the air with it’s ferocious jaws. The power of the bite bisecting the meat without need of sharp teeth, just the power of the jaw was enough to rip anything apart.

It moved with so much power, all those large muscles moving at once, spurred by instinct and training, the ground seemed to quake, the air shifting. The amount of power necessary to move that bulk would astound any crowd. The amount will to train the beast even more so.

Heron stared at the Ringmaster and he turned and noticed her out of the corner of his eye. He turned back to Tanner to dismiss him. “I’ll see what I can do”.

“Very well” Tanner said also having noticed Heron waiting. He left abruptly without saying anything more. Exiting through a large opening in the back. The creature bounded after him flopping around comically dragging it’s large finned tail.

“Yes?” The Ringmaster said crossing his hands behind his back he tilted his head as if he were talking to a child “Do you have something to say?”

“They’re all dead”

The Ringmaster showed no great surprise in his stoney features, he only let out a long disappointed sigh “I see”. He turned to walk up the steps towards his ‘throne’ on the edge of the big top. It was a monstrosity made of collected pieces of wood and metal. Different discarded weapons of the long dead clans that came before. The scattered remnants now making up most of the circus a generation or so on.

He sat and waited for her to say more “Is there more?”

“The ronin clown Pookie lives” She said flat.

He hid it well but at the corner of his eyes, wrinkles started to appear. “And why didn’t you stop him?”

Heron stood not moving, expressionless behind her mask. “That was not my mission”

“Your mission was to bring back a body, so where is it?” He gestured spreading out the fingers of one hand.

Heron said nothing.

The Ringmaster tutted “Forgive me, you’ve lost your friends and I’ve lost a headline act” He paused and thought about the implications. “I want his head atop my throne by this afternoon”

“Yes Ringmaster.” Heron said.

“Wait, I changed my mind!” He tapped his lips with a long finger “I want you to shadow him for me. Report to me on his movements through carrier pidgeon” He sighed deep in thought. “More information is necessary.” He said to himself. The ringmaster straightened his moustache and tugged at it a little more before he noticed Heron was still standing there. “You’re dismissed.”

“Yes Ringmaster”.

Read the rest on inkitt Imaginary folklore

3 Ring Samurai Part 2 Chapter 3 ‘Shaolin Cowboy’

Ayo it’s your boi- I don’t talk like this in real.

Hello there fine people, I’m here again speaking the queens english with more lovely examples of why it is wasted on me.
Didn’t get any time to read last night because I was up all night pumping my guns haha. Which is why I feel wiped today, you always know when you went heavy when you feel like a zombie the next day but it’s good.
I had a good long sleep and I had a good dream, one of those great dreams where you feel like you’re in love and it’s so fleeting and perfect and then you wake up feeling like it was real. Then reality sets in and you realise that love like that only exists in dreams. It’s been so long now since I’ve felt anything like that and sometimes I wonder if I’ll ever feel anything like that ever again. I’m sure I will someday.
But until then I just have to keep going, keep exercising, keep following my dreams, floating lazily along the river of life.
I don’t really have much more to say, I must do some proofreading today nomatter my level of deadedness haha. Diana must be ready for her big day, which is fast approaching.
See you…
On the otherside of the fence there were no torches at all. The only light coming from spill from over from the fence and a dull glowing radiating from the walls.
No sound but a scratching a shuffling which both seemed far off and all around.
Then a sound he recognised, the laughing of the sword being drawn, turning to the sound there was a small pool of red light flickering into existence.
The eyes of the laughing clown hilt lit up and for a brief moment he saw something, or someone.
Lots of someone’s.
A quick glimpse of grey flesh drawn taut over an angular frame.
Pookie stood still and held his breath trying not to make a sound. Just listening to them, trying to discern numbers and strength. They must have heard him land over the fence but maybe the commotion outside covered it.
He inched slowly, keeping low on the balls of his feet. Creeping towards the flashing glow of the red eyes, trying not to look at the maudlin shambling figures in the darkness. His eyes were growing accustomed to the dark now and could see their outlines against the dull glowing surface of the cave wall.
Naked gaunt figures with pale skin peeling from their bones shivering in the darkness.
It was in reach now, he could see it. The sword had come loose from the sheathe in the fall. The eyes were blinking on and off and the naked blade was stuck into the dry dirt of the cave floor, the scabbard a few feet away.
He took it by the handle and wiggled it gently free trying to make as little noise as possible.
Taking it one hand he went for the scabbard and like a total idiot he resheathed the sword causing it to make that loud canned laughter noise. The figures shifted in the dark, the air getting heavier and the sound of sniffing and opening of mouths, the smell of desiccated death all around.
“Ah crap.”
On the otherside Canard crawled on his belly like someone trying to sneak out of a married woman’s bed. Through a series of tunnels comprised of robed legs trying to kick and stomp him to death.
Luckily kicking people in a flowing robe was pretty difficult especially in a big crowd of total morons.
Just a little further” He spat trying not to let his lungs collapse.
“There he is!”
“I’ve got him!”
“WAIT!” Canard shouted as he crawled toward his stick.
And oddly all of them did, being the sort that takes orders. They stopped crowding and grabbing and kicking and just stared in dumb silence. Canard took his staff and used it to raise himself into a sitting position with them all crowded around him. Just one minute” He said as they all surrounded him looking at eachother as if they’d all ran in here and forgotten why it was they ran in here.
Canard sighed and flicked the blade out of his staff and said “Ok continue.”
They all rushed at him at once Canard hesitated for a second then it became clear. He rolled his body forward throwing out his shoulder over his good leg and launching himself forward into a roll. The blade of his spear sweeping in a broad low arc cutting off the legs of all the cultists in a three meter radius of him.
Still not rising to his… foot, he did what I believe in yoga is called a ‘teddy bear roll’. Leaning onto his lower back using his hips and thighs to leverage him into another spin. Sweeping the blade up cutting arms and hands off and pointedly one with a decorative revolver in it.
I think I’m getting the hang of this.” Canard said as his breakdancing spins picked up speed. Violently slashing at whatever was sticking out like some terrible blender from hell.
For a second he lost focus and his guts started to churn and he felt dizzy.
I think I’m gonna throw up.” He said as the spin he was currently in started to wind down, in the centre of a radius of blood and carnage at least ten foot in all directions. Spreading out like some kind of expressionist painting dotted with severed limbs and entrails.
“Did I do that?” He said as he used his stick to raise himself to his foot wobbling slightly.
But there was something off about it. The men on the ground were still moving and some even were picking among the maelstrom for lost limbs and organs, seemingly trying to reattach them. This both amused and bemused Canard until he started to realise that what they were attempting, was working.
Efron too saw something she liked. She smiled broadly as she picked up an arm holding a decorative revolver. She carefully pryed the fingers free and let the arm drop to the ground, the arm twitching slightly.
“Ooh pretty” She said as she regard the gun with the care and finesse of an effienado. She held it out in front of her with two hands “Pew pew”.
Check out the rest of the chapter here.

3 Ring Samurai Part 2 Chapter 2 ‘Taint no sin’.

Hey there,

Got some more of that wacky clown anime action stuff I guess haha.
I dunno I’m kinda just fucking around right now waiting for inspiration to hit me and jump start my next big project while also thinking seriously about getting Diana off the ground and grinding my teeth waiting, endlessly waiting.

I got older recently haha, I won’t say how old but it started me thinking about some things and also I went to the doctor finally to get a referral to see if I actually do have aspergers. And those two things colliding got me thinking even harder about the paths I chose and whether or not I chose them at all, or maybe I just fell into them and that’s why I’m in the hole I am right now.

I was thinking to myself about the choices I made in the past and my dreams and fantasies I had about myself. Because I always wanted to be a writer, ever since secondary school but I told myself I would be a character from a book before I wrote them. So I tried to go to the root of all awesome characters and join the army and it didn’t go well.

I mean some stupid thing stopped me, just one stupid thing I said completely changed my path and I can’t say for the worse because thinking about it now I don’t see how I could have ever made army life work. I mean I think I could have but knowing what I know or I think I know about myself now I don’t think I have the social skills to really be an effective part of a unit. I’ve always been a loner, I’ve always sort out my own space or felt alone even in a crowd and just wanted to get behind a locked door as soon as I could. And I think the aspergers thing might explain a lot of that.

But I always cherished the people that would force me to go outside and interact with people and hated them too, pushed them away if I could, isolated myself. I just can’t help it, I feel bad about it but it’s just in my nature. I can’t wait to see people I cherish but also in the back of mind I’m relieved when I don’t, I’m at peace when I’m alone. I’m happy when they’re with me but I also can’t wait til I’m alone with my thoughts again.
Loneliness terrifies but I also crave solitude on an instinctual level. 
Even in the job I work now, it was initially customer facing but somehow I managed to transform it into a job where I’m alone most of the time but still making more money. Basically just through an anal level of attention to detail I made my own job and made myself vital in some sense to the organisation at my work. I completely removed myself from customer interaction to essentially focus on the engine of the business itself, like the wizard of oz working the levers behind the curtains, you don’t see me but you feel my presence when things are going right.

I just don’t know how that would translate in any other job because that’s what I’ve been thinking about, facing the reality of this THIS not working out. If Diana flops I can’t see the validity of continuing on really because I completely lack the part of my brain that would give me the social skills to craft my own fanbase and I don’t have the clout or the right hook to find an agent to do it for me.

I could keep lying to myself and just blindly keep carrying on until I’m dead and one day someone unearths my work and so desperate for story uses it to make some shitty movie. But now I don’t know because soon enough the world I came to know, this comfortable bubble I exist in will pop and I’ll be all alone and have to abandon it just to eat and stay warm and moreover there’s someone I NEED to see. Someone I NEED to be known and remembered by.

And sadly I need money to do that, a lot of money.

I don’t know who to trust or who to take advice from, nothing seems to make sense, but I feel a change is coming and everyday it gets harder to see the future and I just feel its crushing weight upon me and all I can do is tell myself everything will be ok, but by what standard?

I know I’m lazy, I know it’s pathetic and I know only I can make a change but I don’t know what path to take and it’s so much easier to sit and wait for an opportunity that might never arise to come.

I want to be with the ones I love but I also crave being left alone in this hole I made myself and I hate myself for feeling that way, I fucking hate feeling like that. It’s like being a vampire who craves the light but loves the dark too much to leave. Terrible analogy, I suck at analogies as always.

I just don’t know what to do and I feel like all I have to do is wait, but for how long?

Who can say?

I mean this whole thing is not so much for you as it is for me, I have no one else to talk to so I’m sort of talking to myself, trying to understand how I feel about it and I can’t tell if it’s helping.

Anyway I can’t keep harping on about this, getting nothing more than this done today will just exacerbate the problem of not feeling like I’m making good use of my time on this earth and then worrying about whether that contribution is really worth anything.

So yeah.

See you…

The night was uncommonly warm and seemed to hum with an unnatural energy, an electricity which vibrated the ground. It was dark as dark could get. Years of pollution had dulled every star and the night sky was a pitch blanket. But still glowed with a vile orange effulgence that made it almost possible to see the outline of every rock and tree. Just barely.

 

There was no doubt someone was watching him, Pookie could feel eyes on him. Efron was following him with the little candle from the shack. “Put out that light” he whispered.

 

“But-“

 

“Just do it.”

 

The little girl blew the candle out and let the darkness take them for a ride. Their eyes adjusting to the radiant glow of the orange night. There was a light, a dim echo of one strangled to a fine point. They passed several dark shacks like the one they awoke in. Pookie was still and quiet and listened for breathing, farting or any movement at all but surmised they were all empty.

 

As they got closer to the light they could see that it was coming from an opening in a small cave. The cave was little more than a hole in the ground that lead down under a large slab of rock.

 

“Are we going in there?” Efron whispered.

 

“It would be a pretty boring plot point if we didn’t” Pookie said.

 

“You could call it ‘subverting expectations’” Someone behind them said.

 

They both turned together to see someone grotesquely lit by the dim torch light of the cave and they froze stifling a shriek.

 

But it was just Canard.

 

“What are you doing here?” Pookie whispered emphatically.

 

“I got bored”

 

“How did you sneak up on me with one leg?”

 

Canard grinned and let his head loll to one side. “Buddy I could sneak up on you with no legs”

 

“That would be pretty easy actually, like squirming on the ground like a worm.” Efron chimed in trying to get between them, standing on her tip toes.

 

Pookie glared at him and Canard glared back.

 

“You can’t hear that, that humming noise?” Canard broke the brittle silence.

 

“I thought that was just my ears ringing” Pookie said wiggling his little finger in his ear trying to get the irritating noise out.

 

“I hear it too” Efron said, her eyes wide and excited by the cool night air.

 

“We going in or not?” Canard said.

 

“After you” Pookie said, his eyes locked on the deadly bird.

 

“Be my guest” Canard retorted returning the icy glare, retreating back into uncomfortable silence.

 

“Weeeee” Efron said as she ran into the cave waving her arms like an airplane.

 

They followed her into the cave shushing her as they went.

 

Inside the cave it was predictably dark but less dark than outside as it was lit by some fire deeper down in the cave.

 

The followed the glow which had started out a white yellowish colour but was getting more green as they made their way deeper into the cave. The heat too was becoming unbearable and the humming sound was all around them.

 

They made their through a small alcove which opened onto an outcropping overlooking the main chamber.

 

The main chamber was a grand irregular dome shaped room lit by a huge bonfire. The bonfire glowed and burned violently with a green flame rising almost to the ceiling. But strangely producing almost no smoke and what smoke it did produce was ventilated through a small hole in the roof of the cave.

 

Hundreds of cloaked figures knelt around the fire. The strange humming noise was now revealed to be coming from them. They droned in a form of odd ritualistic chanting that was completely unintelligible. But sounded something like a girl in a tentacle porn hentai saying ‘no’ over and over again. And then something that sounded like someone trying to say ‘chicken fingers’ while sneezing.

 

Pookie et al ducked behind the outcropping of the irregular stone to watch in bemused astonishment.

 

“What are they doing?” Efron said.

 

“Err” Pookie said as he stared intently at the shifting throng as they gyrated strangely.

 

One figure emerged from the crowd dressed almost exactly the same as the others but with his hood down and walking with a long stick. He walked seemingly with some difficulty as if his legs weren’t fit for walking on just the two anymore. He ascended a raised carved stone podium backed by a makeshift fence of some sort made from scrap metal, consisting of road signs and tar.

 

He turned to his flock, his face seemed to glow green and his grey hair too, what was left of it shone unnaturally in uneven tufts on his head. A big set of moist bug eyes in his head looking everywhere and taking up most of the space on his wet looking face darted around the room.

 

“BROTHERS!”

 

The crowd hummed with excitement and the torches flickered.

 

“THE DAY OF PROPHECY HAS COME!”

 

“That’s what you said last week!” A heckler at the back said.

 

“WHO SAID THAT?!” The man at the podium said narrowing his bulbous eyes. “I thought as much!” He said as no one came forward to claim their remarks.

 

“I KNOW SOME OF YOU ARE TIRED, IRRITABLE. WAITING FOR THE ONE THAT WOULD BRING US UP OUT OF THIS EXISTENCE AND ELEVATE US TO OUR RIGHTFUL PLACE AS GODS OF THIS WORLD!”

 

“TOO LONG WE’VE BEEN DOWN HERE KEPT ALIVE ONLY BY THE GLOWING RIVER OF LIFE THAT RUNS THROUGH OUR VILLAGE. IT’S HEALING POWERS MAKING US STRONG AND EXTENDING OUR LIVES AS THE WATER RUNS THROUGH OUR VEINS.”

 

“FOR HUNDREDS OF YEARS WE’VE WAITED AND WATCHED AS THE ONES ABOVE LAYED WASTE TO THIS WORLD.” He paused and scanned the crowd as if it was them that had done it.

 

“THE RAIDERS, THE MONGRELS, THE MARAUDERS AND MADMEN AND OF COURSE- THE CLOWNS”

 

“WHILE THESE GANGS OF WAISTRELS DESTROYED, RAPED AND PILLAGED JOINING FORCES TO TURN THIS WORLD INSIDE OUT. WE WAITED HERE FOR THE ONE WHO WOULD BRING US THE KEY TO OUR SALVATION.”

 

“AND THAT TIME IS UPON US!”

 

The crowd cheered uproariously at this as he swept them into a frenzy.

 

“WITH THIS GIRL, WE WILL MARCH ON THE SURFACE ONCE MORE” The strange man jeered and lifted Efron up as if she was Simba in the lion king.

 

“Wait what?” Pookie said looking over at the space Efron was just in now vacant.

 

“Huh?” Canard said also noting her absence.

If you wanna checkout the rest of the chapter or more weird stuff head on over to my inkitt page. Taint no sin

 

3 Ring Samurai: Part 2 The Space Between Worlds. Chapter 1 ‘Ice Cream’

Here I am to disappoint you once again haha.

So not really a surprise, I said I was doing this but you didn’t know I was cutting the chapters down haha. I just went over it and I was like ‘why is my fun punchy action comedy coming in these huge ass chapters and not acting as the filler I intended it to be?’ Probably to save on clown pictures haha.
So I cut it down shamelessly to better filler. But I think it makes it flow better, appeal more to audiences with a shorter attention span.
It’s a pretty fun romp, I had fun writing it. It came out a lot better than I thought in terms of getting in the anime backstory for a deeper build on the character still leaving in mystery.
I was actually thinking about the developing story last night in the shower (the place I do most of my thinking haha) and it sounded pretty good in my head, I have a strong back bone to the narrative but plenty of freedom and time to take it in any number of little side roads and alleys for fun.
That sounded bad haha.
Yeah so, not much to add, just wanted to get this chapter proofread and out there for you all, hope you like it.
See you…
 
“I don’t remember you” Pookie said.
 
“That hurts” Canard smiled through his words tilting his head slightly. “I’m your biggest fan”
 
Pookie wobbled a little and corrected himself with his hips. He cast a glance down at the rapid waters below bubbling with toxic waste and probably used needles from a century ago.
 
“You were always kind of weird, even for circus folk, liked to keep to yourself. But I mean most clans like to keep to themselves, clowns especially, guess you guys think you’re kinda special.” He laughed. “But I always liked you, in fact, you were the reason we joined, one of them anyway.”
 
“We?”
 
“Yeah my ‘friends’”
 
“The ones I killed?”
 
“We were more like ‘acquaintances’ really, you don’t choose your friends in this world, ya just kinda try to get by.” He sighed.
 
“We were orphans, our parents killed in the war, we had like a little gang stealing and scrounging to stay alive. One day the circus came to town and we snuck into one of your shows.” He laughed. “You couldn’t have been much older than us at the time, a boy really, but the way you fought, and how the crowd loved you.
 
“Right at that moment, we realised that life couldn’t get any better than that. We could never be kings or work a normal job like our parents. We’d never fall in love and have kids but if that crowd could cheer for us like it did for you. We could die with a smile on our face, ya know” He clicked his teeth under his mask.
 
“And then you go and do a stupid thing like kill your own master, why? He not pat you on the head and tell you you’re a good boy enough, run out of fortune cookies to read from, what was it?”
 
“…” Pookie stayed silent.
 
“Well whatever it was it’s my mission to bring your body back.” He laughed and gripped his spear tighter “I guess we should fight now”.
 
Pookie was getting his balance, getting used to the spring and using his toes to walk and cling to the rope mimicking the movement of the acrobat. He bounced on his heels and used his sword as a balance beam.
 
Canard took up a readied stance and Pookie leaned back into the rope. Suddenly springing forward he pulled the cord on his sheathe and the sword came roaring with laughter out to cut the air.
 
He was gone.
 
Pookie stood frozen for a moment feeling overextended and confused. There was nowhere to go, it seemed impossible for him to vanish right before his eyes.
 
There was a laughter and Pookie’s blood ran like ice water as the blade of a spear came up between his leg and nicked his foot playfully.
 
Canard was standing as he was before except upside down, gripping the rope with his feet.
 
“You dodged, just by falling.”
 
The spear came up again but Pookie bounced back and away. Canard stayed on him walking upside down gripping with his toes as if they were hands following Pookie’s movements.
 
Pookie barely able to keep his balance and block the incoming strikes with his blade.
 
Pookie jumped back and Canard tugged at the rope and swung himself the right way up.
 
“Impossible right? To just vanish right before your eyes” He laughed. “The others just ran to their deaths one after the other, I don’t fault them for that, they died exactly how they expected to but I watched you. I noticed there’s a split second, right when you pull that cord and the sparks fly, just a nano second – you close your eyes.” He said, an unseen grin creeping across his face
 
Pookie’s face soured and he got that cold feeling in his gut like when he needed to take a shit really bad.
 
Canard glided towards Pookie, weightlessly and effortlessly fast like the rope wasn’t even there, like he could fly. His spear flashing in the air he slashed down at Pookie’s head. Pookie barely managed to get his footing, turning side on to block the strike. But then a follow up and Pookie turned again stepping backwards barely dodging a thrust. The blade nicked his shoulder when the blade came back as he tried to regain his balance.
 
Pookie turned 180 degrees throwing his body weight forward. He launched a powerful strike holding his sheathe out to his side to act as a counterbalance. Canard was too close and overextended to block it so had to jump backwards gliding through the air and landing softly back on the rope a few feet away.
 
Pookie looked at the cut on his shoulder and the one on his leg and he felt all his exertion. His lungs burning, every muscle and sinew fighting to keep his balance and fight at the same time. How long could he last? He tried to quickly glance behind him to see how far he’d have to run to get back to the other side of the bridge. But he couldn’t turn far enough or fast enough without giving away his intention. And if he just turned and ran for it the much more experienced tight rope walker would undoubtedly catch up to him and strike him down like a coward.
 
No there was no other way, he couldn’t turn back, there was no other way but to keep going.
 
Canard looked down at the toxic rapids below “We were never afraid of death as kids. Death was all around us, it was in the streets and in our living rooms, in our kitchens, it was how we lived, how we – ate. But falling, the fear of falling that was something completely different, something we had to conquer. So we practiced, we climbed and ran and jumped and sometimes we fell but we didn’t die.
 
And in a way I guess she helped us conquer death.”
 
“She?”
 
“Our leader, she didn’t want to play our little game and she went on ahead”
 
“She’s your leader but you ignore her orders?”
 
“Geez, you really don’t know anything about us, someone doesn’t get out of the tent much. She’s the strongest but she’s also kind of a pain in the ass” He laughed. “And who are you to talk, you took a knife to your master in the dead of night, like a fucking pussy” He laughed.
 
“It wasn’t like that.”
 
“Then how was it?”
 
“…”
 
“Exactly, you’re no better than us, they followed their code and they died anyway, you broke yours and you’re still alive!”
 
Canard leapt forward again gliding across the rope and jumping launching a downward slash, his spear flashing. Pookie raised his sword and tried to keep his stance balanced.
 
Canard feinted a strike from above pulled away at the last second. He came in again from the side swiping upwards with the tip of his spear catching Pookie across the chest with a shallow but vicious cut. Pookie swirled around and swung his blade hard at nothing again as the lithe duck evaporated. Gliding up in the air back the few feet out of his reach, Pookie fought to get his balance, his frustration mingling with the searing new pain in his chest.
 
It was hopeless, Pookie could barely even move to launch at attack himself. Having to keep his balance made him a sitting duck only able to counter and each time he was getting more tired and losing more blood.
 
“We just wanted to have a little fun, what’s left in this life if you can’t have that before you die.” Canard said.
 
“Is that all there is?” Pookie looked down at the water again.
 
“Of course, can you think of anything else?” He laughed.
 
Pookie rested the blade of his sword against the rope. “Are we having fun yet?”
 
“You’re joking right?”
 
“Do I look like I’m joking?”
 
Canard looked at him and shrugged. “Well, yeah kinda”
 
Pookie flicked his wrist and cut the rope, plunging them into the toxic rapids below.
 
In the trees a heron mask watches the scene coldly surveying and then retracting back into the foliage.
 
 
Read the rest on inkitt by following this link Ice cream

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