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Diplomatic and Justified
They throw me through a window, barely a grey panel against the dusk of the underground I’m falling through. I can just about make out the floor – it’s coming up fast. Using the slight angle of my fall, I try for a roll-out and nearly succeed. Skidding to a stop, I take a breath of the dank air and cough. “Good landing, good sir.” Another inmate? Nobody hinted at that. I take a moment to ease my breathing, then it’s time to come up with some way to salvage this situation. “Whom do I have the pleasure of sharing this tidal pit with?” “Rathiek Kinodar, good sir. Benthusian diplomat and latel
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W
Welcome to Cloneville
They stare at me as I go by. Heart-shaped faces, pale skin, a hint of freckles, eyes like summer sky reflecting in still ponds. Every day since I got here, they stop what they’re doing to watch me go by. Still makes me uncomfortable, but it always happens, so I’m accustomed to it. The only thing I can do is keep driving. I stop at the delicatessen, offload the shipment and back through the doors, sack wheels stacked with wicker crates up to my chin. “Good afternoon, Caleb. You’re late today?” I stop by the till and carefully slide the stack off the wheels. “Sorry about that, Roy. Had to help Roy at the bake
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E
Empire
I love Christmas, everyone’s preoccupied or in a good mood. A focussed gent like me can make a fortune. Times have changed, though: used to be all I had to do was hang around and look a bit down and out. That’s become a good way to get spat at, beaten, or even set fire to. Not that my people don’t do it, but it takes numbers and money to have a trio of thumpers nearby, ready to deal with the weak people who like to bully. I prefer to keep static begging for sizing up a target. That way, any donations are a bonus. As for what my grandad loved to call his ‘flexible friend’, it’s still good. Crowded cafes, a c
0Comments
1Favourites
S
Star Eagle
With slow majesty the huge spacecraft swings about, displaying alien lines in the distant star’s light. Mantled wings of golden energy cant toward the tiny needle that darts about, shooting beams of visible and invisible energy at it. The behemoth remains silent and apparently indifferent. “Damn it! Why doesn’t it respond?” As Lieutenant Kai ‘Stev’ Stevraphanos thumps his control board for the third time in as many minutes, Captain Witt Slatterly sighs and looks up from his library screen. “Go easy on the architecture, Stev. We may need that fire control.” “We’d have needed it before
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1Favourites
S
Shower Time
In the beginning, there was a world. It wasn’t a particularly unusual or outstanding one, just another ball of rock with a hot liquid interior and a solid lump at the centre. The usual early planetary phases passed without anything of note, then the meteor arrived. Sheer luck it hit water far enough from a volcano for the liquid to not be boiling. Sheerer luck it careened through the shallows before plunging into the deeps, fragmenting as it went. The microbes on that meteor hadn’t been anywhere so accommodating since their home planet blew apart. A rush of renewed life met the local forms and, surprisingly quickly, all sorts of i
0Comments
1Favourites
E
Ever Near
Rex Christus, I ache this morning. Forgive the profanity, Lord, but it feels like my bones loosened themselves in their joints overnight. There’s a harsh light on the streets, as if Heaven is searching the dimmest corners of its mighty demesne for sinners. Ha! They’ll find more than a few in these twisted ways. Titheport is a planet filled with bile, turning the masses into sinners who feel the gloria militarius does not enrich their lives. Which is true: those who serve Caesar get only dust, so it is written. The planetary authorities are improving, but there’s a long road ahead. Lucifer spake truth when he said that “
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W
Wyld by Nature
The magic came back. It went unnoticed for a while. Then a couple of bane magic covens got nasty surprises. Apprehension turned to fear as authority figures came up with increasingly implausible explanations. ‘Magewinter’ is the term everyone uses: a word that conceals more horror than the survivors care to recall. Afterwards, the superpowers allied. Frantic experimentation and desperate conscription combined with some questionable black projects from all sides to form the Magister Army – a dedicated force with the best in modern technology and rediscovered sorcerous might. Just in time. A starving shepherd named Fusman pray
0Comments
2Favourites
S
Sudden and Grace
Words fall like hawks. I know someone is going to die. As the Cantor finishes his brief condemnation, I see her move like a broken mannequin; a ballerina of sudden and grace. There’s a falsetto gurgle that bubbles into a dying sigh. She’s quick tonight; a minor offender. The crowd shivers as she steps back into their world, the sheen of her dermis reflecting candlelight in the way her eyes should. She moves past me. I decide tonight is the night. “You move well for a Thorn. Who tutored you in humanity?” I find myself lifted from the ground by a slim arm that logic dictates should barely be able lift a babe. Her gaze sw
0Comments
5Favourites
T
The Fall of Sturmcala
Unearthly music accompanies their shifting ranks through the trees. I watch as they somersault over bushes and vault between branches before landing to resume their rhythmic approach. Their movements pull the low mist into fantastical shapes about them. Canmer, my intelligence officer, swears. “They dance the Nehardin! Commander Thorne-Regnault, witness this. There will be none left before this day ends. They intend to make us rue the day we came to this planet with this, their last stand.” I’ve stood proud as Groume Knights in their powered armour laid waste to everything that opposes them on a battlefield. I’ve even
0Comments
2Favourites
P
Peternal
The fist aimed at my head connects. I hear his knuckles break. Before he can scream, I chop him across the throat and toss him off the walkway. His landing will raise some alarms, but it’s twenty floors down and I’m about to get everyone’s attention anyway. Completing my approach without any more guardsmen pouncing on me, I find the reinforced door is secured with multiple access controls. If I had the time, I could open it without leaving a mark. As I don’t, I slap a five-kilo pack of explosive against the centre of it, then leap backwards. My line swings me high and clear. The explosion tears the door and wall apart.
0Comments
2Favourites
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D
Diplomatic and Justified
They throw me through a window, barely a grey panel against the dusk of the underground I’m falling through. I can just about make out the floor – it’s coming up fast. Using the slight angle of my fall, I try for a roll-out and nearly succeed. Skidding to a stop, I take a breath of the dank air and cough. “Good landing, good sir.” Another inmate? Nobody hinted at that. I take a moment to ease my breathing, then it’s time to come up with some way to salvage this situation. “Whom do I have the pleasure of sharing this tidal pit with?” “Rathiek Kinodar, good sir. Benthusian diplomat and latel
0Comments
1Favourites
W
Welcome to Cloneville
They stare at me as I go by. Heart-shaped faces, pale skin, a hint of freckles, eyes like summer sky reflecting in still ponds. Every day since I got here, they stop what they’re doing to watch me go by. Still makes me uncomfortable, but it always happens, so I’m accustomed to it. The only thing I can do is keep driving. I stop at the delicatessen, offload the shipment and back through the doors, sack wheels stacked with wicker crates up to my chin. “Good afternoon, Caleb. You’re late today?” I stop by the till and carefully slide the stack off the wheels. “Sorry about that, Roy. Had to help Roy at the bake
0Comments
1Favourites
E
Empire
I love Christmas, everyone’s preoccupied or in a good mood. A focussed gent like me can make a fortune. Times have changed, though: used to be all I had to do was hang around and look a bit down and out. That’s become a good way to get spat at, beaten, or even set fire to. Not that my people don’t do it, but it takes numbers and money to have a trio of thumpers nearby, ready to deal with the weak people who like to bully. I prefer to keep static begging for sizing up a target. That way, any donations are a bonus. As for what my grandad loved to call his ‘flexible friend’, it’s still good. Crowded cafes, a c
0Comments
1Favourites
S
Star Eagle
With slow majesty the huge spacecraft swings about, displaying alien lines in the distant star’s light. Mantled wings of golden energy cant toward the tiny needle that darts about, shooting beams of visible and invisible energy at it. The behemoth remains silent and apparently indifferent. “Damn it! Why doesn’t it respond?” As Lieutenant Kai ‘Stev’ Stevraphanos thumps his control board for the third time in as many minutes, Captain Witt Slatterly sighs and looks up from his library screen. “Go easy on the architecture, Stev. We may need that fire control.” “We’d have needed it before
0Comments
1Favourites
S
Shower Time
In the beginning, there was a world. It wasn’t a particularly unusual or outstanding one, just another ball of rock with a hot liquid interior and a solid lump at the centre. The usual early planetary phases passed without anything of note, then the meteor arrived. Sheer luck it hit water far enough from a volcano for the liquid to not be boiling. Sheerer luck it careened through the shallows before plunging into the deeps, fragmenting as it went. The microbes on that meteor hadn’t been anywhere so accommodating since their home planet blew apart. A rush of renewed life met the local forms and, surprisingly quickly, all sorts of i
0Comments
1Favourites
E
Ever Near
Rex Christus, I ache this morning. Forgive the profanity, Lord, but it feels like my bones loosened themselves in their joints overnight. There’s a harsh light on the streets, as if Heaven is searching the dimmest corners of its mighty demesne for sinners. Ha! They’ll find more than a few in these twisted ways. Titheport is a planet filled with bile, turning the masses into sinners who feel the gloria militarius does not enrich their lives. Which is true: those who serve Caesar get only dust, so it is written. The planetary authorities are improving, but there’s a long road ahead. Lucifer spake truth when he said that “
0Comments
1Favourites
W
Wyld by Nature
The magic came back. It went unnoticed for a while. Then a couple of bane magic covens got nasty surprises. Apprehension turned to fear as authority figures came up with increasingly implausible explanations. ‘Magewinter’ is the term everyone uses: a word that conceals more horror than the survivors care to recall. Afterwards, the superpowers allied. Frantic experimentation and desperate conscription combined with some questionable black projects from all sides to form the Magister Army – a dedicated force with the best in modern technology and rediscovered sorcerous might. Just in time. A starving shepherd named Fusman pray
0Comments
2Favourites
S
Sudden and Grace
Words fall like hawks. I know someone is going to die. As the Cantor finishes his brief condemnation, I see her move like a broken mannequin; a ballerina of sudden and grace. There’s a falsetto gurgle that bubbles into a dying sigh. She’s quick tonight; a minor offender. The crowd shivers as she steps back into their world, the sheen of her dermis reflecting candlelight in the way her eyes should. She moves past me. I decide tonight is the night. “You move well for a Thorn. Who tutored you in humanity?” I find myself lifted from the ground by a slim arm that logic dictates should barely be able lift a babe. Her gaze sw
0Comments
5Favourites
T
The Fall of Sturmcala
Unearthly music accompanies their shifting ranks through the trees. I watch as they somersault over bushes and vault between branches before landing to resume their rhythmic approach. Their movements pull the low mist into fantastical shapes about them. Canmer, my intelligence officer, swears. “They dance the Nehardin! Commander Thorne-Regnault, witness this. There will be none left before this day ends. They intend to make us rue the day we came to this planet with this, their last stand.” I’ve stood proud as Groume Knights in their powered armour laid waste to everything that opposes them on a battlefield. I’ve even
0Comments
2Favourites
P
Peternal
The fist aimed at my head connects. I hear his knuckles break. Before he can scream, I chop him across the throat and toss him off the walkway. His landing will raise some alarms, but it’s twenty floors down and I’m about to get everyone’s attention anyway. Completing my approach without any more guardsmen pouncing on me, I find the reinforced door is secured with multiple access controls. If I had the time, I could open it without leaving a mark. As I don’t, I slap a five-kilo pack of explosive against the centre of it, then leap backwards. My line swings me high and clear. The explosion tears the door and wall apart.
0Comments
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Artist // Professional // Literature
My Bio
Author, publisher, storyteller, game designer, pagan, and part-time poet.

(Profile photo by Maricel Dragan, slitsight.com)

Favourite Visual Artist
Luis Royo / Rodney Matthews (Stormbringer era)
Favourite Movies
The Mummy ('99) / Broken Arrow / Centurion / Fifth Element / The Warriors / + many more
Favourite TV Shows
FBI / Castle / Numb3rs / Dimension W / Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress / + a few more
Favourite Bands / Musical Artists
Grand Magus / Motorhead / Danny Vaughn / + a few more
Favourite Books
Midnight Nation (Straczynski) / Lord Kalvan of Otherwhen (H Beam Piper)
Favourite Writers
Mick Farren / HP Lovecraft / Andre Norton / + at least a dozen more
Favourite Games
Magic the Gathering / Resident Evil 2 The Board Game / 4098
Favourite Gaming Platform
n/a
Tools of the Trade
Windows laptop + Office 2019 / Arcsoft Photostudio / Affinity Photo / Powerpoint
Other Interests
Physical culture / Aibo / Paganism / Staff writer at 365tomorrows.com

Comments67

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Of all your descriptive choices, pagan did the trick for me. How have I missed your work all this time? You've been on dA almost as long as I have. Oh well. I'm watching now.
RafellinProfessional Writer
It used to be that to conceal something, you had to secrete it away somewhere. Now we have the internet, and finding anything amidst the terabytes of trivia is the real art.

I still haven't worked out the magic way to get my stories to the people who'll be interested. So I'll keep on writing stories, publishing books, and hope more folk like you wend their way to me by word of mouth or whim of the powers.
There are a lot of us on that wending road.
IanTPHobbyist Digital Artist
Belated Birthday Greetings!
RafellinProfessional Writer
Thank you!
KittySibHobbyist General Artist
Kitty kitty - RaveThank you for the llama and have a good day!Kitty kitty - Dont care   
IanTPHobbyist Digital Artist
Happy Birthday dude, hope you had a good one :) x