Archive for the ‘Stones of Atlantis’ Category

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FFF: The Last Prince of Atlantis

August 1, 2008

Short one today.  I like how this one turned out.
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The end was nigh. The end of all that had come before. The end to the millennia of magnificence that was Atlantis.

And so Selebor the lesser sat in the room of far-seeing in the highest part of his palace, brooding as the flames engulfed the city sprawled below him.

There was nothing left to do to save the empire now. The rebels of the eighth house had succeeded in breaching the walls of the citadel and would soon be scouring the seven palaces for the heads of the princes they sought so voraciously.

One of those heads belonged to Selebor.

He waited, patiently, brooding all the while as he watched his world burn. His eyebrows scrunched down hard over his eyes, his jaw clenched in powerless anger, one hand gripping the arm of his ornate chair, its knuckles white with effort, and the other idly banging the bottom of his long scepter on the marble floor.

He alone remained of his household. The rest he had sent away to his holdings elsewhere, far away from the desecration of their home. He didn’t expect to ever see them again.

And so he sat as the chants grew near and his doom approached.

Brooding.

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FFF: The Blue Stone of the Incas

July 18, 2008

“My Lord!”

The dark haired Spaniard in breastplate that was dull and beaten from conquest, turned away from the view of destruction below him and faced the younger conquistador.

“Yes Nephew.” He answered. The temple complex of the Inca’s was theirs now, it had taken a day of slaughter but, God willing, they had been victorious.

“We’ve found the last of them.”

Gonzalo Pizarro followed his nephew as they turned and walked back into the main temple chamber. There were half naked bodies lying about the large room; shot, stabbed, burned. He ignored the devastation, he had seen it all so often; it was his way.

Deeper they went, through a cloud of smoke, down an ancient stone stairway lit only by torchlight. The air became cool all of a sudden as the heat from above could not penetrate so far. Still they went down.

“How far does this lead Francisco?”

“Not much further my lord.”

Their voices sounding trapped in the long dark stairway.

They finally reached bottom and entered what looked like a temple hall fully 50 feet on each side with columns through the center. The room was laden with gold as was the Inca’s wont. Gold was an adornment, a tool of the royalty and priesthood.

Two more Spanish soldiers were there, guarding an Inca priest in his garish red and yellow costume. He was bound and beaten, but praying still.

Gonzalo ignored him, what more could he learn from them, they were treacherous and ignorant. Best send them on to God, baptized before death, there was no further salvation available for them here on earth.

It was then he noticed the stone on the alter at the back of the room.

“What is that nephew?”

“It is for that I brought you here Uncle.” Francisco used the familiar term as a means to lord it over the other soldiers in the room. Gonzalo smiled slightly, admiring his nephew’s skill in politicking at the young age of nineteen.

[He’ll go far] he thought.

Gonzalo walked up to the alter and reached out a hand towards the large blue colored stone. It looked like a large egg, a little longer, a little bigger than it should be and blue as the sky on a summer day.

As he reached for it he heard the Inca begin to protest in his gutter tongue.

Gonzalo did not turn his gaze from the stone, “Shut the whore-son up!”

He didn’t even look as the blade was sunk into the belly of the Inca. The Inca’s scream was cut short by a second strike from the other soldier. There was no need to look, he had seen so much worse, what was one more death to him.

Gonzalo reached out, slowing his hand as it approached the blue stone; captivated, almost hypnotized by its allure. His eyes playing tricks in the flickering light for the stone seemed to shift, to almost shiver, as if anticipating his fingers.

It sparked. Gonzalo pulled his hand back in trepidation. Then, with his Spanish pride goaded, he reached for the blue stone with a sneer of disdain for himself, for the stone and for the pagans.

The stone almost seemed to jump into his hand as he grasped it, as if it were searching for a palm within which to rest. Gonzalo gripped the cool surface; it felt soft like the softest leather but cool like it had just been pulled from the bottom of a mountain stream. The coolness seemed to seep into his hand and up his wrist, pleasing and invigorating.

“Nephew, this stone feels magnificent. My arm feels rejuvenated.”

The stone started to warm a bit, the warmth like whisky in his veins, wicking up his arm.

“aaaaaahhhhh.” Smiling in pleasure, he motioned for his nephew to come take the stone but as Francisco approached Gonzalo found that he could not release his grip.

“uhhg…it appears to be stuck.” He reached up with his other hand to remove it, but his other hand was pulled like a lodestone pulls iron; both his hands were attached. It was then that the cold-heat changed to pain.

“AHHH! There are nails coming from it, AAAAHHH! My hands!” Gonzalo fell to his knees and began to strike his hands against the stone floor in desperation. The pain now was like needles or molten lead going up his veins.

“Uncle,” Francisco rushed to his uncle’s side but then stopped as Gonzalo fell on his side and started screaming.

“AAAAAAEEEEEEEEEESSSSS” His eyeballs rolled up into his head leaving just the whites of his eyes visible. He writhed on the floor, kicking with his feet and shaking his hands that were still glued to the mysterious stone.

Francisco stood in shock; the two soldiers backed out of the room, fearful that the pagan magic would possess them as well. First one bolted up the stairs followed quickly by the other. The clatter of their booted feet receded up the dark stairwell leaving Francisco alone with Gonzalo; frozen with fear, four feet from his uncle.

“…Uncle…” He reached towards the older man who now lay rigid and burbling on the floor in one long convulse.

Francisco leaned over his uncle and listened.  Gonzalo had quieted, no longer even burbling, but instead no his breath came at a rapid pace.  Still Francisco would not touch him.

“AAAAAAAAAEEEEEEEEE!” He screamed into Francisco’s ear, convulsed three more times and then collapsed, spent and flaccid.

The stone rolled free of its grip.

Francisco did not pick it up.

Finally, tentatively, he touched his uncle’s arm. It was cold as the snow and looked at his uncle’s face and noticed tears of blood running from the corners of Gonzalo’s eyes.

He was sure his uncle would die.

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Friday Flash Fiction: The Witch on Oasis

February 22, 2008

So I’m not sure if this is out of bounds for Friday Flash Fiction, but I used it to work through a scene for a longer piece of work I’m working on.

I also end up going over the 1000 word mark a bit.  Oh well…I’ll try something shorter next week.


Kira sat in the back of the bar trying her best to be inconspicuous.

The sounds and sights and other data flowing into her headgear was a rush of input that was ubiquitous in the modern world. Unless you were an all-nat, you got used to it and let your agents and filters refine the noise of life into a manageable din.

She listened and watched and observed and let her augmented systems organize and prioritize and point out pertinent facts to her.

The murder was all the news. Oasis had never had a murder on board her before. Everyone was talking about it. It was already being romanticized; a KNIFE fight! A knife fight on a cycler. Whispers of awe spread around the bar. The ancient barbarity of the act making the perpetrators legends before the blood was cold.

Kira scowled. She knew the murder was no chance thing but a planned assassination attempt.

[The fools must have known it would fail.] She thought.

They knew her husband well enough to know he would best any modern man in a knife fight.

[This was merely a faint.]

Matters were dire, Gabriel was compromised. They were toying with him, letting him know they could get him at any time.

[Why toy with us?]

“Can I get you a drink?” Kira started at the voice. She hadn’t noticed the tall dark haired woman standing next to her.

“uh…I already have one.” She answered.

[Where did she come from? I should have noticed her?]

The other woman was stunning. A full two meters tall with straight black hair, wearing a functional gray outfit, perfect for moving around in the varying gravity environments of the spacecraft. On her, the outfit looked tailored and perfect, as if she would not allow it to be anything but.

“aahh I see now…” And she sat down, uninvited, next to Kira and ordered a martini with a nonchalant flick of her finger and toss from her headgear.

“Can’t get a good scotch out here, but a martini, that’s just clear alcohol, if they use decent vermouth and an olive or two it’s passable.” She said with a sly smile.

Kira consented to acknowledge her, it would be worse if she kept trying to ignore her, “Yeah that’s why I stay with gin and tonics. At least the flavor hides the synthetic…ness.” She trailed off lamely

[Why am I so nervous?]

“Don’t be nervous, I’m not hitting on you…unless you want me to?”

Kira coughed into her drink, splurting the sip out over the bar.

“..cough..ahh…I’m straight.” She noticed her headgear was spitting out a lot of noise, she reigned in the disturbance.

[God she’s got me all twisted!]

The martini came and the black haired stranger offered a brief toast to Kira, “To the future…and the past.”

Kira raised her glass uncertainly. She wasn’t getting any reading on the other woman, nothing was seeping out from her headgear, she was holding a tight filter. That took concentration. Was she an all-nat? No, there were interface connections and the simplest of b-cards exposed.

[She’s so tight, I thought I was good?…]

“My name is Valen.”

“That’s an interesting name.”

“It’s very old.”

Kira was starting to feel trapped.

[She’s one of them.] “I..uh…I” But she was suddenly having trouble remembering what she was going to say.

“I…”

“Yes?” And Valen smiled, “Yes…Kira? You were about to say something?”

[…my name…she knows my name…] But Kira’s thoughts were thick like glue.

“Who…I…” Kira dropped her glass and seemed to be able to watch its fall in slow motion: the glass tumbling…seven ice cubes, 1…2…3…4…5…6…7..seven…now it was halfway to the floor…the swizzle straw was floating free…

…the lime-cube was half dissolved

…a drip hit her shoe

…the light sparkled off the edge of the glass…

[YES KIRA! I AM ONE OF THEM!] Kira heard inside her head.

SMASH! Her gin and tonic hit the floor and became a thousand pieces of ice and glass.

Kira wanted to scream, but had no voice.

[YOU WILL COME WITH ME!]

[…no][YES]

[…no][YES!][…yes]

KIra felt compelled to go along, she was a shattered being, both at once knowing it was the right thing to do and hating it. Wanting to shout “NO!” while calmly speaking “yes”. Her mind was cracking, her vision narrowing, her hands trembling.

She started to teeter over to her side.

The black haired woman leaned over and grabbed Kira, keeping her from falling, “Easy girl, let’s get you back to your cabin.” Valen turned to the bartender, “She’s had a bit much, I’ll take care of her.” [YES I WILL!]

Kira let herself be half led, half carried out of the bar. The rightness so wrong, nausea welled unbidden from her stomach. She started feebly to say something but vertigo wiped the effort away as she fought to maintain consciousness. She went along with the black haired woman; to Valen’s cabin door, they both entered.

The door closed behind them, it had all happened so fast.

“Ahhh…Kira, you don’t know how long I’ve been looking forward to meeting you.” She dragged the near comatose woman to the bed in the room and laid her on her back. Kira was unable to move, she was unable to do anything more than blink and breath.

“It’s a pity about Gabriel, I would have liked to bring you both back to meet my Brother and the family.” And she chuckled at that. “You know who I am don’t you.”

[…yes…you’re the witch…]

[AHH YOU’RE STILL IN THERE GOOD.]

“The next two months would be boring if I had crippled your mind.” She smiled an evil grimace, “The witch eh? I am called that sometimes yes. I won’t disown the title. But it is a bit short and nondescript for the skills I possess.”

[…please…please…let…me go…]

“No, no my dear,” She laughed lightly, almost innocently, “We are going to enjoy ourselves, you and I. We shall become the talk of Oasis. The two stunning women together…ooooh are they lovers? It will be scandalous.”

[….no….please…]

“You’ll love it dear…I will make sure you do. And by the time we reach Earth, you will disembark with me and no one will think anything of it at all.”

“You will come to meet my brother and the family.” [AND YOUR FATE WILL BECOME THE SAME AS THE REST OF YOU SPANISH BASTARDS!] It was like she was shouting in Kira’s head, Kira’s eyes remained open and blankly staring at the ceiling. But pain like lighting was ricocheting inside her skull.

[…I’m not Spanish…]

“I know.” [BUT YOU MARRIED ONE.]

Hope left Kira then, she couldn’t scream, she couldn’t even cry.

“Now, let’s begin with some questions…”