Heres a little bit i wrote during a couple of brief writing flurrys, from the perspective of a bosnian during the Bosnian Civil War. I’ll publish it in two parts. forgive the roughness of the entries, its more meant to test the whole diary concept than anything else.
March 5th, 1992
We declared Independence! four days ago, Parliament polled us all, asking if we wanted to make a new, independent, Bosnian state. I voted yes. One of my friends told me to vote no though. He’s a Serbian. He said that if we stay with Yugoslavia we can forge a grand new state like that. I’d rather we all became our own country though. I voted yes. He got mad. He voted no. I hope it won’t come between us as friends…
April 14th, 1992
I heard on the news today that the serbs from prijedor have moved troops around the city. I’m worried, they warned that it would be no good for us all if we declared independence. I.. just didn’t think that they would actually DO anything about it. They already split from us and made their own country… wasn’t that good enough? ..i’m hoping this is all just hype and it will all blow over. I don’t want anyone to get hurt.
April 26th, 1992
I woke up to the sounds of artillery shells this morning. The Serbs have begun to shell the city! I don’t want to go outside, i’m afraid i’m going to get hit. When I look out the window at the executive council building.. I can hardly see it because of all the smoke. I tried to call my friend, but he won’t pick up. I hope its just because he’s still mad at me.
Avina stared at the radar console as her men stepped off of the Hermes and onto the shoreline. She glanced out of a nearby window at the island a short distance away, and began to daydream, thinking of a town forming on its beaches, slowly growing into a mighty city, eventually even spreading out onto other islands. She thought of her people growing from a small community of scientists and pioneers to a bustling, thriving, metropolis, an oasis in the middle of the endless sea. A smile played across her face as her imagination ran wild, her nation and people spreading throughout the earth, and bringing a new golden age to mankind. Without warning, her reverie was smashed, as the radar console let out an angry series of beeps. She looked back down at the console, and her eyes widened as four or five large red blips streaked in from the other side of the island, like deadly balls of fire.
Sergei Nemtsov listened to the rumble of the Herme’s engines as he guided the small commando vessel across the waves. He glanced around at his crew, watching as some of them outfitted for land recon, and other worked at the various consoles in the ship’s wheel room. The propellers of the Hermes churned the water behind her as Sergei began humming a traditional Russian tune, his mind drifting back to when he was young, and his home in Minsk. He remembered the Harsh winters, and the brief, balmy summers. He could practically smell his mother’s cooking as he thought of his small apartment home. Then his mind drifted to that fateful day, when he was selected to become part of the Ark project. Suddenly, his mind was forced back to the present when one of his men tapped him on the shoulder, and he looked up to see the island, no longer a distant speck, looming before him. It was covered in a dense jungle, and capped off by a single mountain. He studied the coastline of the island, and found a small beach. He glanced at his men, then tugged his recon pack onto his back as he slowed the Hermes. He brought her gently up to the beach, and led the men out of her, into the ankle deep water.
Lucius strode down the alley to a half hidden sign that read “The Flying Dutchman! Best pub this side of the street!” He went through the door under the sign, and strode up to the bar. The barkeep strode up and and said “Ello mate! Wotcha’ have?” Lucius said in a low voice “Im looking for a man named Balt.” The barkeep visibly darkened, and motioned for Lucius to join him in the back room.
As they entered the back room, the barkeep spun and slammed him against the wall. “How do you know that name!” He yelled at Lucius. Lucius shoved the other man off him, brushed himself off, and said “ I was told to contact a man by that name. I am interested in joing his… organization” The barkeep calmed down, and said “Oh… well in that case, a moment please” He turned, and began to walk away seemingly to get “balt”. Suddenly, he spun and threw a knife at Lucius, who caught off guard, barely dodged it. The barkeep charged at the surprised hero, and punched him in the chest before grabbing his arm, which he twisted. Lucius cringed, then spun, breaking the hold. He kneed the man in the gut then spun twice, hitting the man on the ear and in the ribs. The other man staggered back, shocked b y the speed of the attacks, but he only was off guard for a moment. He recovered, and threw a murderous right hook at Lucius dodged, and the man’s fist hit the wall with a *crack*. He howled in pain and staggered backward, cradling his smashed fist. Lucius took this moment to strike, knocking the man to the ground, and stepping on his chest. Oddly enough, the man laughed. “Impressive” he said. “ I think you have the right stuff for The Shadow. Welcome to the club… what was your name?” Lucius’ eyes widened, as he realized he hadn’t thought of a decent name. thinking quickly, he blurted out “Drake. Just drake” Balt patted him roughly on the back as he said “Well then, welcome to the club Drake”
The Aging earl sat in front of the fire in his study, eating his afternoon meal. He had just finished a meeting with Earl Fraser and Prince Theobald over the grain shortage, and was exhausted. He was beginning to doze off when suddenly, his chair was kicked over, and He lay on the floor. He looked up to see a well built, muscular man in a white cloak standing over him. “You Lied to me! i told you if you lied to me I would be back!” Sebastian Rigatonni, Fifth Earl of Bantyre, blanched white. “Lucius…” He stammered “How wonderful.. to see you again!” His greeting was answered with a kick in the side. “Tell me what you know about The Shadow, you worthless pile of bones!” “The Shadow? Ive never heard of anything called the Sha-” He was cut off as Lucius hoisted him up and slammed him against the wall “You will NOT lie to me if you value your pitiful excuse for a life. I know you are connected with them, in fact, i’ve heard you are fairly high up in the food chain. Tell me how to get in.” Lucius said, tightening his grip on the other man’s throat. Sebastian frowned, turning even whiter than before. “Bu..but… they will kill me!” Lucius chuckled. “Then don’t tell them you fool! Tell me who to contact to get into the organization, and if i need it, vouch for me. Do so, and I spare you when the time comes. Decline, and.. well let’s just say I wouldn’t worry about what your shadowy friends will do to you.” Sebastian stammered for a moment, seemingly close to tears, then he nodded “Fine… they aren’t worth my life. Go to the Flying Dutchman Inn and ask for a man named Balt. He’ll handle it from there” Lucius let go of the noble, who slumped into a heap on the ground. As he was walking away, lucius turned “Oh and Earl… We’ll keep in touch.”
Lucius entered the “Gilded Dragon”, and strode across the loud, smoky room, to a dimly lit table in the corner. He was there only a moment, when a hooded man appeared, seemingly out of nowhere. The man sat down, smiled, and said in a low tone “Lucius my freind! i thought thane had you rotting in Darkmyre for that business with the king!”. Lucius looked at him absentmindedly for a moment, before responding. “Khitŭr, Khitŭr Edno. its been far too long brother! ” he said, hugging the shorter man.
Breaking the embrace, Edno leaned back, stroking his beard. “So… what brings you to my neck of the woods Lucius?” He said questioningly “I Haven’t seen you around the dragon in quite some time.” Lucius sipped a stien of beer he had ordered, and said “I’m in a bit of trouble, and I need some information.” ”Oh? on who? Some earl, or a king even?” Lucius frowned, then responded “If only… What do you know about a man named Occassus? and have you ever heard of a Furvus B’as?” Edno’s face suddenly went pale, and he said ” I don’t know anything about either of them. Is there anything else i can do?” lucius looked up from his beer, staring at Edno. “Khitŭr Edno not knowing about someone? that’s impossible! Come now, stop jesting and tell me” he said, smiling. “After all, you do owe me one after that business in Thermapolis.” “Lucius. you don’t know what you’re getting into, I can’t tell you, not even you, about them, my livelihood, even my life would be risk. Lucius looked at the other man, then shook his head unbelievingly. “Edno… please. I’ll protect you, and i’ll do anything to get this information. Anything at all.” Edno bowed his head for a moment, apparently in thought, before responding. “Fine… I can’t say no to you Lucius. But were even… No, you owe me one after this.” Edno lowered his voice, and looked around furtively “The Furvus B’as is the head of the organization called The Shadow. No one knows his true identity. The Shadow is everywhere, in fact, i’m sure they have an informant somewhere in this very Bar. The only way you’ll ever get to Furvus B’as is by starting at the bottom and going from there.” Lucius frowned, shocked by this new information “Do you know any guaranteed members of The Shadow? Anyone i can start with?” Edno sighed heavily ” I’m already dead if they find out…. so why not? I believe the Rigatonni family is fairly high up in the organization, although nothing is a guarantee with The Shadow.” Lucius’ eyes suddenly turned to cold, hard steel as he said ” Rigatonni? as in Sebastian Rigatonni?”. Edno chuckled “The same. You know him?” Lucius got up, nearly knocking the table over in the process “Only met once. But i have a feeling were going to get to know each other a lot better”
Okay after that brief break from the story of our mysterious lucius, I give you the 6th installment of The Jester’s Blade!
As the figure drove the knife down, Lucius rolled, kicking the figure in the shin. The figure, taken by surprise, and thoroughly angered that its prey was still alive, jumped backwards, and drew a second dagger for his off hand. Lucius rolled out of bed, and jumped to his feet, grabbing his “juggling” daggers off of the wardrobe. He lunged at the figure, who easily sidestepped the half awake Jester, allowing him to barrel through the door. Lucius stumbled back to his feet as the figure sprang through the door. Now that the figure was in the torchlight of the hallway, Lucius could see that “it” was a small, lithe,man, clad in black robes, with a black hood over his face. The man slashed at Lucius with one dagger, while he simultaneously stabbed at him with the other. Lucius dodged the blades nimbly, and grabbed the man’s off hand, twisting it until he heard a snap, along with the man’s scream. The man staggered then recovered, slashing at Lucius in a desperate attempt to regain the upper hand. he grazed Lucius’ chest, leaving a long slash across it and cutting his shirt. Lucius whipped out his own daggers, and threw two, pinning the man to the wall by his robe. Fighting the urge to kill the man then and there, he began to question him “What is you name, and who do you serve?” he asked the now bone white man. “My name is Occassus, and i serve my master” Lucius glared at Occassus, and almost growled the next question “Fine Occassus… who is your master?” “My master,” Occassus said, smiling insidiously, “Is the black death, the Furvus B’as, and your bane!” Suddenly, Occassus grabbed his dagger out of Lucius’ hand, thrusting it right into his own heart, then throwing it in one last rebellious attempt straight at Lucius. Lucius dodged the blade, then ran over to Occassus, who lay dying on the floor. Occassus looked up, spit at Lucius, then collapsed as his last breath escaped his body. “Fool.” Lucius muttered as he let go of the dead assassin.