Tales From a Thousand Worlds

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Monthly Archives: March 2016

Hammer of the Pygmies – Part Six

They departed the camp with the arrival of first light the following morning, tracking the stream as best they could back up into the hills. It proved no easy trek, for the jungle crowded in thick and unyielding in parts around them. The mule clanked and forced its way through the foliage after them, the boiler cranked all the way up to provide extra power and traction, at the expense of burning through the coal log at greater speed.

Follow this link for Part Six of Hammer of the Pygmies

The Oasis of Broken Bones – Part One

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A scalding wind swirled down the slopes of ragged, rock strewn hills, emanating from the uplands, to roll out over the desert dunes where it disturbed the grains that had banked up high. It carried with it the fearsome intensity of the sun that gleamed off the desert sands and broiled the air. Rolling dunes swept towards the rocky uplands, a place of barren hills overlooked the brooding deserts. Through the uplands, alongside an ancient, dried up river bed, a well worn trail wound its way.

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The Tavern Cursed – Part Five

DPB_The Tavern Cursed

Bakanon shuffled back in through the shattered door of his tavern, shaking his head, his nerves rattled and heart apounding. The interior had survived remarkably intact from the ferocious buffeting that had resulted upon the detonation of the eldritch manifestation that had plagued the Souk, yet, even so, much had still been upended and the rushes scattered all over.

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Hammer of the Pygmies – Part Five

Despite Doctor Gooding’s confident prediction, it took him a few days longer than he anticipated to get the mechanical mule up and running again, spending the time tinkering away with it to get it up to peak performance. Sir Richard partook of the resultant delay to spend time down at the Club, catching up with acquaintances and with news, in particular with the newly arrived Lord Redsmith, who had come by way of Australis, where he had been Chief Magistrate at the Port Jackson colony.

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The Tavern Cursed – Part Four

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The Souk outside stood empty, the patrons having sensibly fled. Bakanon, in all his time there, could not recall it having ever been so before. Stalls stood overturned, their merchandise strewn across the ground, while the smooth worn stone pavers were littered with discards hats, lost sandals, dropped cloaks and the other detritus that marked a hasty retreat.

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The Tavern Cursed – Part Three

DPB_The Tavern Cursed

A clatter of bowls and mugs were set down on the surface of the rough table the pair had taken seats at. Many cuts and scrapes marred the table. The pair had their swords on the table, kept close at hand. The food Bakanon served was typical of what was on offer, being comprised of coarse, dark bread, only a few days old, alongside a watery stew. It contained a mix of withered root vegetables brought out of storage, kept there for who knew how long, and a few strips of a hard, dried meat. The butcher who had sold it to Bakanon had sworn that it was beef, though he had doubts about that and had not tried it personally.

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Hammer of the Pygmies – Part Four

When Sir Richard returned to the dining room the following morning, he found it somewhat cleaner in appearance. Doctor Gooding’s tools were still laid out across the table, but the parts of the mechanical mule had been removed. Fresh linen had likewise replaced the one that had been stained with oil and grease.

Follow this link for Part Four of Hammer of the Pygmies

The Tavern Cursed – Part Two

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The tavern for the most sat empty, the few present filling it with a sombre silence. A portly, red faced man sat at a crude wooden table of uncertain balance, bleary eyes surveying the handful of sullen patrons hunched in their seats, nursing small mugs of ale. A few torches flickered in their sconces, casting dull light through the dingy room, smoke from them curling up around stained support beams. Old rushes were strewn across the uneven pavers of the floor, while the furnishings were makeshift at best. The room smelled of rotten rushes and smoke, of sour ale and stale sweat.

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The Tavern Cursed – Part One

DPB_The Tavern Cursed

A puzzled look flashed across the broad and honest face of the young woman with the auburn hair that had been bound behind her head with a simple leather thong. Amongst the thronging evening crowds of the souk that jostled about, she seemed out of place, a wild animal on edge, untamed fury that boiled beneath the surface, barely restrained.

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Hammer of the Pygmies – Part Three

The evening wound on in a haze of cigar smoke and fine brandy. Money flowed back and forwards, changing hands as Sir Richard won some games and lost others. In the end he came out marginally ahead. Around the room swirled other members of the Club, coming and going. In time the evening reached its conclusion, rather late, and Sir Richard retired, bidding his farewells to his companions.

Follow this link for Part Three of Hammer of the Pygmies