Tribes: The Last Days of Planet Earth Volume II Released

Tribes Book Cover

Tribes has been released on Smashwords and Amazon and is available to purchase now as an eBook. It will shortly be available at the following outlets as well:

Sony, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Apple, Diesel and WHSmith.

Tribes continues where Gods and Monsters left off. The arrival of old enemies brings pain to both Jack and Blake. Vega is beginning to wonder who are the good guys and who are the bad guys, and has he misplaced his trust. Meanwhile, dark forces gather, and as the world changes irreversibly, the human race stumbles blindly on into possible annihilation.


Tribes Cover

The Last Days of Planet Earth Vol II
Available at Smashwords

Gods and Monsters Image

Gods and Monsters The Last Days of Planet Earth Vol I Available at Smashwords




Wyrd Worlds II

An anthology featuring a bumper 19 short stories from 17 independent authors from around the world, encompassing a wide range of science fiction and fantasy. Here lurks tales of the future, steampunk and time travel; of magical realms and fantastical deeds; and of things so weird they defy categorisation. The original WYRD WORLDS rode upon a new wave of indie collaborations; and now we’re back! Less
WYRD WORLDS II is the work of an international collection of science fiction and fantasy writers, independent authors old and new, who have come together through the book recommendations site Goodreads to contribute to this anthology. This ebook contains a bumper 19 short stories from 17 independent authors from around the world, encompassing a wide range of science fiction and fantasy. Here lurks tales of the future, steampunk and time travel; of magical realms and fantastical deeds; and of things so weird they defy categorisation. The original WYRD WORLDS rode upon a new wave of indie collaborations; and now we’re back! In this anthology you will find:

HORIZON – KIRA: PART 2 by Ross Harrison – It was just her and a boy, alone. Kira had to concentrate on keeping him alive.
THE VISITOR by Neil Shooter – Time is relative. On an ordinary blustery British night an extraordinary visitor comes.
A WORLD TAKEN OVER by Douglas Schwartz – He had conquered the world. How much more effort was it going to be to unconquer it?
THE JOY OF SOCKS by A.L. Butcher – The imps knew what they wanted from the Bringer of Offerings…
THE COLONIAL PLAGUE by L.L. Watkin – It’s been years since Missra was executed and now her soul is shut away, but being the most powerful magical healer of her generation gets her out of the box occasionally…
HUMANITY WAS DELICIOUS by Ubiquitous Bubba – Imagine you were the werewolf who ate the last human. What will you eat now? More importantly, how are you going to get off this alien ship?
MY LAST DAY by Zach Tyo – Disaster awaits the Earth, yet an unexpected gift brings joy.
GUISARME by Barbara G. Tarn – Members of the Assassins’ Guild can be as honorable as anyone. They might be trained to kill, but they’re just people with loved ones to protect and avenge.
ROCK OF AGES by Steph Bennion – Letters from the past were hidden for a reason. But breaking into the secure facility was child’s play compared to an unexpected family reunion…
THE DINER by Michael Puttonen – Sometimes a life lived hasn’t been lived at all.
HOMELESS by Neil Shooter – Winter didn’t end, but his world has. Is he completely alone? In a world gone cold, what can keep the spark of life shining?
GY by Peter Lean – The Book was the knowledge that could open the door, but the worlds had been separated for a reason…
IRREVOCABLE by L.J. Hick – He did not accept finality. All he knew was that he had to change the impossible.
POISONED GROUND by Laurel A. Rockefeller – Lady Abbess Cara of house Ten-Ar must find the cause of a mysterious plague of illnesses before it is too late for the city of Nan-li…
SASHA AND THE COLLARED GIRL by Stan Morris – The man was willing to trade his prized possession, but she was already lost.
QUEST FOR THE PURPLE PUMPKIN by Victoria Zigler – A glittering surprise in the woods leads Polly to another world, where just being human is punishable by death…
FREE WILL by A.L. Butcher – The other Grand Wizards thought Leonardos eccentric, indulging the little World Marble like a favoured child…
AT THE BOTTOM OF THE LAKE by Clark Graham – A tabloid journalist discovers his outlandish stories just might be true.
CHANGING EVERYTHING by Josh Karaczewski – Two men set out into one of America’s roughest neighborhoods as one piece of a grand plan to change everything…

Price: Free!

WWII image


Published by WyrdStar
Published: Sep. 20, 2014
Words: 99,620
Language: English
ISBN: 9781311521767
About Various Authors

These ‘various authors’ of science-fiction and fantasy came together via the modern magic of the social network Goodreads. Their stories cover a wide range of speculative fiction, from high fantasy through time travel and steampunk to traditional science-fiction. They are:

Steph Bennion (Wyrd Worlds I & II)
Ubiquitous Bubba (Wyrd Worlds I & II)
A.L. Butcher (Wyrd Worlds I & II)
Emma Faragher (Wyrd Worlds I)
Clark Graham (Wyrd Worlds II)
Ross Harrison (Wyrd Worlds I & II)
L.J. Hick (Wyrd Worlds II)
Josh Karaczewski (Wyrd Worlds I & II)
Peter Lean (Wyrd Worlds I & II)
Stan Morris (Wyrd Worlds I & II)
Michael Puttonen (Wyrd Worlds II)
Laurel A. Rockefeller (Wyrd Worlds II)
Douglas Schwartz (Wyrd Worlds II)
Neil Shooter (Wyrd Worlds I & II)
Barbara G. Tarn (Wyrd Worlds I & II)
Zach Tyo (Wyrd Worlds II)
L.L. Watkin (Wyrd Worlds I & II)
Gary Weston (Wyrd Worlds I)
Victoria Zigler (Wyrd Worlds II)


This is an excerpt from the BBC documentary, Five Disasters Waiting To Happen and concerns Shanghai.

ATOM – Chapter 1 Part 1

Atom Image

He was not sure how far back he could remember. However, he was certain that it was very early in his lifetime. The cries from the cot and the murmurings that formed no coherent vocabulary were his, but the shouting and the screaming belonged to his parents. He could remember them arguing. They would stand there pointing at each other, each with a fresh accusation, ready to level at the other. It was almost as if they were conducting a war of guilt. His father was drunk and despite this, he was on his way back out, returning home briefly, to grab some more money to feed his addiction. Of course, she was blameless for this. It was not her fault that her husband and father of her child was a hopeless drunk, incapable of coping with the stresses and strains of normal life. It was her fault though, that she felt the need to deliver a few home truths in a stream of vitriol whilst standing in front of her only child. Not old enough to sit up on his own but old enough to sense and hear the alarm and hostility around him, old enough to recognise these warring figures as his parents. He was not old enough to do anything at all about it though, not yet. That was his first memory. At least he thought it was his first memory. There was another that in some ways was even darker than the vision of his warring parents. At night, when he was alone and afraid, he would drift off to sleep and then the wolf would come. It would scratch at his door, emitting a low growl and nudging the handle with its jaw. When it eventually caused the handle to drop enough and enable its entry into his room, it would stand on its hind legs and walk slowly to his cot. The growling would become louder and the heat of its breath would warm his face as its sticky saliva dripped onto his skin. He would try to cry out for help but his infantile vocal chords would not work. He just lay there, unable to speak, unable to move, petrified. Always, just as the wolf was about to turn him onto his back and speak to him, his mother would rush into the room, cursing him for crying out in the night. It always disturbed him that although he could make no sound in his nightmare, the screams of his terror bypassed his subconscious mind and found a home in the conscious real world. He wondered whether he had been happy as an infant. Even if he did have a happy infancy, would he have remembered it? He remembered anger and nightmares, but that could just have been because it was so disturbing that they had stamped their mark on his memories. He could have been happy, he thought. Who in this world would remember happy events from their infant days, those who did not dream of wolves, perhaps?

His early school days were marred by his reluctance to become a part of the social crowd, even at those tender years. He did not want to be part of the school and be involved in its communal activities. He did not care that much for friends, although he was fairly popular and amiable. When he thought back to those times, he realised how socially tolerant and creative he was. School years came and went as he progressed through a variety of subjects, classes and teachers, with few of his peers ever leaving him with a positive impression. The fragility of confidence hidden beneath a mask of authority gained no respect from him. All the same, he remained attentive in lessons, aware that he had much to learn. His own self-discipline removed the need for authoritarian guidance, indeed he came to resent and reject authority whenever he could. When there was no alternative but to accept the intransigent regulations of the lesser intellectuals, it left a bitter taste in his mouth. The bitterness would remain and grow as the years passed, adding bite to his words and a sharpness to his attitude. He would not react to the impositions imposed upon his individual freedom despite the many occasions that tested his patience. He would not react at all, not yet.

His peers would for the most part leave him alone during his years of education. He would ignore mere words and taunts, but for those who dared to cross the line physically it was the one and only time they ever did so. He was good-natured to others and would not wilfully assault them, even when provoked, but physical confrontation caused his temper to snap and leave the aggressor regretting their actions.  As he settled into school life, those who knew him never crossed the line and slowly but surely the irresistible compulsion to take advantage of the fear took hold of him. He changed from the quiet, inoffensive young man to a loud, outspoken and aggressive individual, a trait he continued with until he left school and stumbled into adult life.

He passed through the unfortunate phases that most young men do. The ill-advised nights of drinking too much that would end in either violence or words that he wished he had never said. Actions that seemed funny when in a state of intoxication were embarrassing to him when he sobered. The experimental drugs and the clumsy and sometimes unfeeling relationships with women were all put behind him as he successfully completed a university education and left to gain a job he had never trained for. His degree in history was of little use in the minimalist surroundings of a bank, but the pay was okay and the role of administrator suited him. He sat away from the menace of the general public, safe behind the grey walls and keypad locked door that secured the staff-only part of the building. His pay was enough to enable him to leave home and rent a small flat. Although he had dated many women, he had never yet found one to share this part of his life and so he still lived alone. The books on past wars and conquerors filled his shelves and the music he listened to was loud and aggressive. He was thankful for the one pair of headphones he possessed so that he could play his music loudly without interruption. He filled his days with work and his nights with music and films when he was not going out. He would fall into bed, tired but deep in thought. When he did not sleep, he would think about the things he needed to know and make plans for the future. When he woke, he would make his way into the bathroom and look into the mirror and smile. Maybe, he thought, today is the day.


Enhanced by Zemanta

The Last Days of Planet Earth Vol 1: Gods and Monsters Soundtrack

Well I have changed my mind a lot of times about the songs but have finally settled on these.

If Gods and Monsters ever became a film or TV series, this would be the soundtrack I would like.

The songs relate to the prologue, chapters and epilogue in order.


Enhanced by Zemanta

Wyrd Worlds

Wyrd Worlds Image


An anthology of science-fiction and fantasy short stories by indie authors brought together by the social network Goodreads. The collection, which contains 14 stories from 12 writers from around the world, includes a wide range of speculative fiction, from slices of fantasy and time travel to steampunk and science-fiction. The tales vary widely, yet are all born from the same drive to create, share ideas and above all to entertain!
(First published 7 September 2013; approx 260 pages / 90,000 words. ISBN: 978-1-30-141351-5.)


Editor Steph Bennion
Contributors Steph Bennion
Ubiquitous Bubba
Alexandra Butcher
Emma Faragher
Ross Harrison
Josh Karaczewski
Peter Lean
Stan Morris
Neil Shooter
Barbara G. Tarn
L. L. Watkin
Gary Weston
Artwork Ross Harrison

Recommended retail price: Free!

Amazon UKAmazon USAiBookstoreBarnes and NobleDieselFlipkartKobo

SmashwordsNook (Barnes and Noble UK)Scribd





1 TALES OF ERANA: THE BLUE PHIAL by Alexandra Butcher
A short story from the world of The Light Beyond the Storm Chronicles.
When a haughty princess scorns a barbarian chieftain, her city pays the price.
3 ANTIMATTER ME by Steph Bennion
The experiment had not been a success and now time was running out. Or was it running in?
Drinkers sometimes see all kinds of things. But even I wasn’t expecting to see a four-eyed Martian in my lounge…
5 THE IMAGINARY INVASION by Ubiquitous Bubba
When our reality is invaded by extra-dimensional beings, imaginary characters may be humanity’s only hope.
A professor of history, a mysterious scientific institute and an impossible painting in a story of time travel.
7 CAUSALITY by Neil Shooter
A dream of desolation and death. How can this end be a beginning? And how can a dream seem so real?
8 NECROMANCER by Emma Faragher
Mal is a necromancer. Now her greatest debt is being called in, and her skills are needed. On a murder investigation, no less.
9 KIRA by Ross Harrison
Kira’s town has so far survived the destruction wrought by the Government on so many others. But for how much longer?
IN THE LAP OF THE GODS by Steph Bennion (a Worlds of Hollow Moon short story)
There are those who would stop at nothing to keep certain inventions from becoming a reality.
Mobile website
11 MONDAY IMPS by Alexandra Butcher
Have you ever wondered about Mondays? Why is it everything seems to go wrong? There is a simple answer…
A new war is being fought on the rooftops and alleyways by men in mech suits.
13 MESRIN STATION by L. L. Watkin
Jan was never an upstanding citizen, but he was never stupid either; and now they are all in more trouble than they thought…
14 HALF-BLOOD by Barbara G. Tarn
Giordano discovers he’s a half-blood. His search for his real father will take him farther than he thought.

* * *

Author Biographies

Steph Bennion is a writer, musician and civil servant in Westminster, born and bred in the Black Country but now living in South London, England. Her science-fiction stories are written as a reaction to the dearth of alternative heroes amidst bookshelves swamped by tales of the supernatural. For every aspiring vampire or wizard, the world needs an astrophysicist, an engineer, or at the very least someone who can make the trains run on time. Her debut self-published space-opera adventure Hollow Moon, for young adults and adults young-at-heart, was published in 2012. The sequel Paw-Prints Of The Gods is out now!
Interview: Creative Barbwire and Indie Book Reviewer blogs.
Website: The Worlds Of Hollow Moon

Growing up in Texas, Ubiquitous Bubba studied the lore of the Storyteller, the mysterious art of the tall tale, and the pervasive universal existence of Bubbas. They’re everywhere. As he wandered universes, he discovered that there’s always a Bubba around when you need one. Ubiquitous Bubba enjoys relaxing at home with his wife and three kids. He enjoys telling stories, eating pizza, and holding the recliner down. It hasn’t gotten away yet, but one can’t be too careful.
Interview: Creative Barbwire blog.

Alexandra Butcher is a British author who lives in the South West UK. She currently has two adult dark fantasy / fantasy romance novels in the Light Beyond the Storm Chronicles series with more to follow. She also writes erotica, short fantasy stories, and poetry. She lives with three very naughty guinea pigs and an elderly rabbit, oh and not forgetting her human partner of many years. She is much too lazy to have many hobbies other than an interest in history and natural history and an occasional fascination with trying to be a photographer.
Interview: Creative Barbwire blog.

Emma Faragher writes futuristic fantasy. Born in 1992 in the UK, she grew up with a love of books. She started writing night-time stories for family friends, then moved on to writing books aimed at adults as she became one herself. Currently studying at Sheffield university she is the author of the Trix SinClara series. An urban fantasy set in the future and following a shapeshifter as she is thrust into responsibility she never imagined she’d have. The House, the first book in the series, is currently published and available, with others coming soon. Emma balances writing with studying and her other hobbies. Always busy, she sometimes finds time to sit and read a book as well. Escaping into other worlds.
Interview: Creative Barbwire blog.

Ross Harrison is a writer of, primarily, science fantasy. He has been writing since childhood without thought of publication. When the idea was planted by his grandmother to do so, it grew rapidly, and after a bumpy ten years or so, here sits the fruit. Ross lives on the UK/Eire border in Ireland, hoping the rain will help his hair grow back. The NEXUS science fantasy / space opera series is his main body of work, but a semi-noir thriller will be available later in 2013.
Interview: Creative Barbwire blog.

Josh Karaczewski is living in the San Francisco Bay Area until he can retire somewhere warmer. His stories have been published in several literary journals: one receiving a Pushcart Prize nomination, though he hasn’t won any sort of cart for his writing yet. His books include the seriocomic novel, Alexander Murphy’s Home for Wayward Celebrities, and the short story collection, My Governor’s House and other stories; any day now the riches will pour in from these so that he can write full time. Until then, he will continue forcing high school students to read, write, and think.

Peter Lean is the pen-name used by the author for his fiction works. Jurist in real life, authors of several law books in his native language (Italian), he started recently to write fiction, either for fun or as an experiment. He realized he enjoys doing that and, since science fiction short stories were his first love, he decided to try his hand in this field. He has published a number of short stories for Kindle and other e-book readers and, recently, a collection of his first short stories, Photographs. A Journey Through Space, Time, and More.The Guns Of Napoleon is his first short story, and also the skeleton on which the author based his first novel, which will be published by the end of 2013.

Stan Morris was born in Linwood, California. He wrote his first novel when he was fourteen. At age twenty one he moved to New Mexico, where he met the teenager he later married. They have two sons, both gainfully employed (thank goodness!). In 1983 they moved to Maui where Stan later retired after years of assembling computers. He is the author of seven books; Surviving the FogSurviving the Fog – Kathy’s RecollectionsSarah’s Spaceship AdventureThe Colors of Passion and LoveSam’s WinningsKate’s Movie Star, and Amy’s Hero. He is presently working on Julee Mackenzie and the First OfficerJara Mackenzie Versus the Planet Marl, and Captain MaAckenzie and the Last Chance Spaceship. His website includes information about Maui, Japanese Manga, and his favourite music.
Interview: Creative Barbwire and Library of Erana blogs.

Neil Shooter grew up in northern England and now lives in a quiet suburban corner of Ontario, Canada. Always a slow learner, it has taken Neil most of his adult life to realize that the one thing that never fails to ground him and make him happy is the thing he should be doing with the rest of his life. Better late than never… Causality, his story in this anthology, was published in January 2013 and is the first in a series of connected short stories The Causality Sequence. The next story is called Probability.
Interview: Creative Barbwire blog.

Barbara G. Tarn is a writer, sometimes artist, mostly a world-creator and storyteller. She’s been building her world of Silvery Earth for a number of years – stories, comprise shorts, novels and graphic novels. Used to multiple projects (a graphic novel is always on the side of the prose), she writes, draws, ignores her day job and blogs (since October 2009) as an indie author (since January 2011, when her first title, Jessamine, came out on Smashwords). Conall and Damir’s story is in Books of the Immortals – Water and Jordan’s story continues in Books of the Immortals – Ether. Her other works are the Silvery Earth saga (adult unconventional fantasy – 19 titles and counting) and the Star Minds science-fantasy series.
Interview: Library of Erana blog.

L. L. Watkin is the pen name for writing partnership Liz Smith and Louise Smith, two sisters from the North of England who’ve been writing together for nearly ten years but only started publishing in 2012. As well as writing they publish a couple of fanzines, blog a bit and enjoy spoiling their rabbit, Buzz Lightyear. They have several short stories available for free download, and two science-fiction novel series (Leviathan and The Handmaiden).

Gary Weston is a retired engineer, living with his dog Minnie, in a small town in the lower North Island of New Zealand. He was born in England. He has been writing seriously for about five years and now has over 50 titles as an indie writer. He was never going to write science-fiction, which is probably why he has written about 20 of them. He also writes detective stories, adventure, and paranormal.

* * *

Publication details
Do you have the latest version? Ebooks are periodically revised to update endpapers following new releases and to correct any errors.

September 2013 Wyrd Worlds First edition.

NOTE: If you obtained this ebook from Smashwords, you can download all subsequent updates at no extra cost.


Enhanced by Zemanta

The One – Book of Corrosion

The One image holder

The child rejected by his family and kept from  friends. Stranded far from  home with no plausible way to return. His only intent is to find a way, find the means to return to the land of his youth, to reclaim his  heritage. His eyes fixed in a singular gaze to the stars, this is his absolute, his only desire. All will fall before him, washed away by words or death as he makes his plans against his jailers. The fires of Hell will be lit in celebration at his victories as he keeps the Angels from the gateway. Hades will stay peaceful and calm whilst The One inhabits the Earth. The gateway will remain closed and the armies of Hell will have no need to taste the blood of men. Living many life times and wearing many guises will breed his malevolence as his intellect increases beyond understanding. Always guiding and nudging the hand of man towards his own needs and desires, the Great Deceiver remains the greatest single danger to man to walk the Earth. Yet he remains your hope, your only hope, your only means of preventing the Rapture, preventing  colonization of the planet by Angels.

He will not aid you easily though. You must deceive The One, make him believe that only through aiding your fight can he return home and meet his aims. He has walked this Earth for centuries but will not easily be recognized as he wears the faces of many men. Only through words will you discover his true form. Lure him to your tongue and entrap him with your plans. Tell him that you cannot succeed in your task without his presence, for this is the truth.

He commands the force of nature that dwells in the caves and the beings that hunt at night lest they burn in the day. The brides of Satan, the witches, will flock to his call despite their contempt for him. He and his armies of darkness will stand by your side to defend the borders of the fatherland against the rampaging horde. Keep one eye on The One and another on the gateway, for if the King of Hell worries for his dimension, the armies of Hell will pour forth from the gateway, crushing everything in their path. Find the seals before the Angels, for they mean to walk in the fields of Hades and spread their seed. Find the seals and close the gateway forever, giving Hades peace of mind and the Earth freedom from disaster. Raphael had the answer. Loathe to give the seals to his lords, he hid them among his children and banished them to the Earth. There are eight seals and eight children. Tell The One that you have discovered the permanent solution to the gateway of Hell. He will rush to your side as he will be desperate to close the matter once and for all.

Find the children of Raphael and seal the gateway. Then make a deal with the Devil and save the Earth.

Enhanced by Zemanta


Image for Prologus

Let you who have been given the task of guarding this book, guard its secrets well. Formed across the expanse of time, the entries in this verse give clues to the past, present and future. Guides are all you will receive lest I should inadvertently betray myself and those I have given my trust to.

Though I never directly took a side, there are still those that believe I should stand with them. I refute this and any allegiance to one race or viewpoint. I have been called the most noble of free men, a disciple of the light and grave robber. All of these are vague references to what completes me as a man. Trusted with the deliverance of a man,back into the world , betrayed by those he sought to aid and persecuted by those he dared to question, I fulfilled my duty as I saw fit and not as others sought me to do.

You who read this book,are entrusted to make choices based on personal beliefs and an honest will to take the right course. Whether you can be worthy of the tasks ahead remains to be seen, but I have made a personal choice based on individual freewill to entrust you with this book. Should you turn around to see me, I will not be there. Should you call out to me, I will not hear. Should you need my aid, I will not answer your call. Know that my time as a catalyst is done and never was I the action for change. It is your time now. There is a sense of goodness that prevails in you. This is why I have placed the book in your safe-keeping. Seek help where you can find it, even if you cannot trust it. Understand that the world of man is governed by the instinct for survival and self-preservation at all times. Understand this and you will always remain one step ahead of your opponent. The words contained within are the truth of the past, a picture of the present and a guide to the future. Read them well and guard them jealously.

In the hope that humanity does in fact exist.



Durdle Door


Durdle Door, Lulworth, England

Durdle Door, Lulworth, England


I had to get a look at Durdle Door for myself. I have watched various programs where Durdle Door is featured and even remember it being used as a location for the video of Tears For Fears when they recorded Shout, but still images and moving pictures on a screen provide nothing like the feeling of standing beside this magnificent natural structure.


It’s not only Tears For Fears who have used this is a backdrop of course, it features in many other music videos and films. In the second book of The Last Days Of Planet Earth it serves as a doorway into another world, and so it was only natural that I should take the time to actually see it in person.


The walk towards it as you traverse the steps from Lulworth Cove is oppressive and I wouldn’t recommend it for for anyone averse to a little strenuous exercise. Steep steps take you to the top of the hill where you can gaze down on Durdle Door. Walking back down the other side of the hill will take you to Durdle Door itself where there is a level viewing area to take pictures and rest for a moment or two. The walkway down towards the beach itself is blocked now and to get to the beach itself you have to negotiate an incline that was never meant to serve as access. 


Nevertheless when standing on the beach itself you get a sense of awe at standing next one of nature’s most glorious monuments to geology. The downside of course is that to get back to Lulworth Cove you have to  climb and walk again, only this time in reverse. It was only when I returned to Lulworth Cove itself that someone pointed out  I could have driven to a more accessible and less punishing point to view Durdle Door, but that meant missing the challenge and the view at the top of the hill.


I really recommend a visit to Durdle Door for anyone not only from the United Kingdom, but from anywhere in the world. Hats off by the way to the guy from the United States who was taking loads of pictures at every possible angle and vantage point. He was clearly impressed by its beauty and scenic wonder and I am sure you will be too.


I hope I can bring to life just a small fraction of the sense of history and wonder that Durdle Door exudes, when detailed in the second book.


If I achieve that, I will be a very happy man.


Les Hick

Durdle Door 1Apex View Durdle Door BeachDurdle Door 3




Enhanced by Zemanta

The Merchants Of Menace

tales of corrosion 1



The rulers of the cities gathered together, deep in thought,

Their rulings defied and questioned at every turn, their honesty questioned and speeches ridiculed as an act.

Their enemies had become more influential by posing as friends, but ready to twist the knife from the front. Members of the rulers announced their discontent, and their willingness to turn and run to their enemies was both voiced and public.

Outside the doors of the meeting room, the rich merchants of the cities had gathered, seeking audience with the rulers, intent on imposing their will upon the last bastions of freedom.

At first, just one was granted an audience, his name Coercion. Long had he financed the wars and wages of the rulers, but now he spoke favourably of their enemies, who had garnered support with the voices of lemmings and sheep. His intent to fall towards whichever side of the fence became more favourable to the lemmings, with no regard to whether it might be the right thing to do or not.

He spoke of how he had always supported the rulers, and of how one very rich merchant who had done the same, had now left their ranks and joined the growing army of the enemy. He told the tale of how the discontent among the people of the cities had led the merchants to believe that the only option left to them was control and fabrication. To suppress and chain the people whilst making it seem they were being provisioned for, and their voices acknowledged.

Bitter confrontations with people who had never liked the rulers anyway, were cited as discontent and used as a tool to lever worry within the rulers. The rulers listened to his words, then bade him leave whilst they held council.

One who had disappeared from the council without explanation, only to be seen openly flaunting herself at play in full view of the people,returned and  recommended making a pact with their enemies, betraying all principles, in the pursuit of power. She deemed that their enemy was no different to the rulers, and it seemed absurd that they should fight over power, whilst the enemy from the west, stood watching them with amusement in their eyes. The rulers shook their heads in disbelief, with one fragile alliance in place to keep the power, could they afford another with a body they had once ridiculed and dismissed as absurd?

They counselled each other for many days and nights, wondering whether it would be better to be honest and pursue the right path in the interests of freedom and democracy, and risk their grip on power, or to choose the path of lies and deceit and be as men and women bought by the rich with cheap coin to hold onto power.

On the day of the decision, the crowds gathered and chanted as the announcement was due to be broadcast. The rulers looked nervous and unconvincing, the moles smug, and the merchants in the cheap suits of greed and selfishness, happy.

In the crowd, the men from the west, sharpened their knives, a look of glee had spread uniformly between them. They had thought that this might be a great fight, a battle to leave all sides bloody and reeling, but they also hoped that the rulers heeded the words of traitors and the blind affluent and trod the road of lost credibility and eventual destruction. Would today be the day that the rulers sold democracy to the merchants of menace?

And so they put their knives back into their holders and smiled, knowing that they may yet win this war without shedding a single drop of blood spilt from one of their own.

From Tales Of Corrosion copyright 2013


Enhanced by Zemanta
Translate »