Dies the Fire (Closed)

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Dies the Fire (Closed)

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Moniker on Tue Sep 08, 2009 10:21 pm

Those burlesque girls are waving at me again, thought Patrick Reed with a grin. He was operating a giant 1500 lbs roller on what would soon be the new Banff Avenue. Once the dirt pack was solid, they’d add gravel and then asphalt and there would be a new road. As it was now, there was two feet till they reached the curb with a blue rent-a-fence put up to keep Joe Public off the site. The novelty photography store was beside him at the moment. They’d get you up in an old wild west costume or other things and take your picture. They put girls dressed as saloon servers in the front window for advertising, and they liked to wave at him as he drove by making the ground rumble.

Patrick tipped his hat to the girls in their red corsets as he passed then continued on, watching the edge, the road, the crosswalk and the Mack dump truck that went past him in the other direction simultaneously. He got into clearer ground and sped up slightly, but not too much. Any faster and the dirt wouldn’t pack well and he’d have to go over it again. He wouldn’t have minded that, but that wasn’t what the bosses paid him for. Of course, they didn’t pay him to flirt with the showgirls in the window, either. The bosses don’t pay me not to flirt with the girlies, he reminded himself silently with a grin.

He had just been pondering if he should ask them out for drinks when his head split open with fire. The pain was intense and he couldn’t see. He felt himself jerk backwards as he pulled on the directional lever of his machine and then stop completely. It was more complete then it should have been, with the engines no longer vibrating. The pain left as suddenly as it had came, and Patrick looked around to see if he’d hit anything. He hadn’t, having stopped in the middle of the dirt road. Maybe I hit the emergency shut-off, he wondered. Patrick had good reflexes, but he’d never actually used the big red stop button.

That thought faded fast as his awareness fully returned. A pick-up had swerved off the road, jumped the median and ended up in the ditch on his side of the construction site. Other cars were still coasting to a stop but most had braked. One had pushed its hood under the back end of a bus full of tourists, and there were all ready people shouting everywhere, and at least one child crying. The sight was surreal from Patrick’s elevated vantage point and for a few minutes he just sat in the chair of the roller and watched as people scrambled over the wrecked cars.

“‘Ey Padrik!” said a heavily accented voice from beside Reed’s machine. “You get down from there, we got things to do!” It was Solomon, one of the job foremen. He was a broad man in his late fifties from somewhere in the middle east. Patrick hopped down from the roller and took out his earplugs, looking blankly into Solomon’s moustached face.

“There’s people hurt in the cars. Get your kit,” continued Solomon and he left. Patrick did as he was told, going to the back of the machine, opening a hatch and pulling out a miniscule first-aid kit. Still in a daze, Patrick moved to the closest wreck, where the little Honda had pushed itself under a coach. If they’d been going the speed limit this wouldn’t have happened, he couldn’t help but think. Banff Avenue was notorious for speeding cars.

The driver and passengers had been extricated and people from the street were trying to help them while a herd of Japanese tourists poured out of their coach to take pictures. Patrick idly noticed that none of their cameras seemed to work. Two of the cars passengers seemed relatively uninjured but the third was bleeding profusely from a wound on his face from a glass cut. The woman helping him seemed to have some sort of medical training and he handed the first-aid kit to her. She pulled on some latex gloves from inside while a man tried to take the victims attention from his wound. Still in his hardhat and safety vest, Patrick stood dumfounded and watched as they worked on the glass wound until the woman turned to him.

“Are you just going to stand there or are you going to help with the others? There’s someone over there who-” started the woman, but she never finished as Patrick glared at her. He was an imposing sort, not exactly tall at 5‘10“, but with 260 lbs. in him and most of it in his arms and shoulders. He wasn‘t the sort to be shouted at by a little woman. As far as he was concerned, he had helped by bringing the first-aid kit. Something had made all the engines stop. And those digital cameras, he reminded himself. Whatever it was would put a tourist town like Banff into chaos, and as far as he was concerned, he had to look after himself first, his friends and family next, and some stranger who was going too fast down the main drag last. He’d have some stops to make before getting home.
Last edited by Skallagrim on Tue Sep 22, 2009 1:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Edited title to reflect RPG rules on naming role-plays
I have a right to my anger, and I don't want anybody telling me I shouldn't be, that it's not nice to be, and that something's wrong with me because I get angry.

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Re: Dies the Fire (Private)

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Tempest on Fri Sep 11, 2009 10:11 pm

“Sweet suffering mother of a monkeys tit!” The exclamation burst from a towering blonde man as he staggered back from the bridge window to crash into a console and then onto the deck. Around him similar cries could be heard as the rest of the ships company experienced the same blinding white light he had.

As swiftly as it had come however the pain was gone and crewmembers picked themselves up from the deck rather sheepishly, glancing about at the others. It was starting to seem rather funny until the helmsman, a short Newfoundlander wearing a killicks bars spoke sharply.

“All four DA’s offline sir!” He hands moved frantically across the helm console and the thrusters controls. “Thrusters refusing to respond to helm command. The helm is dead sir!”

The startled officer of the watch brushed past the blonde man who had nearly fallen on him to stare at the helm. Swearing under his breath he reached for the radio but the blonde, his name tag reading “Knight”, halted him. “Avast sir. Look.” He pointed to the radars, all three of them were dead, the lights on the radio’s also remained dark.

“Shit…”

The words had barely come from the officer’s mouth when the ships Captain burst onto the bridge. It only took him a few seconds, glancing from one crewman to the other to know something far more then a headache had struck. He opened his mouth to speak but a voice cut him off. The big blonde Ableseaman had made his way onto the bridge wing and was now pointing off towards where land should have been had it been daylight.

“Captain sir! The lights! Everything, its out!”

The Captain, flanked by his officer hurried out to the join Knight and as one they stared into the pitch dark. The Captain was the first to speak.

“Dear suffering Christ…”

Her Majesties Canadian Ship Nanaimo was dead in the water and adrift yet it seemed that the world too had vanished into the night.
Last edited by Tempest on Wed Sep 16, 2009 10:11 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Dies the Fire (Private)

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Moniker on Wed Sep 16, 2009 12:41 am

By seven that evening - never bringing his nice watch to work left him using the sun as a clock - Patrick had a bit of a council formed in his living room. Luckily, most of his closest friends had been at work when trouble struck and he’d been able to convince them to show up at his place as soon as they could. They sat in the living room with bowls of homemade ham and pea soup in their hands which had been warmed up by the fire pit in the backyard. For a time they sat in silence, enjoying the meal and going through their own thoughts. There were seven in all. From Reed’s right there was red-haired Theos Yiorgos with his scrawny right hand bandaged. He’d burned it in one of his restaurants ovens when the white flash hit. Beside him was his sister, Sophia with dark hair and nowhere near the skeletal figure of her older brother. She looked stressed and worried but had remained calm so far. Next was Marco Corcoran, a Bike Tech from one of the half-dozen sports stores in the town. The last three were Russell McKay, who was a bow-hunter in is spare time and worked as a welder. Lastly, Will Foster and Donovan Ulmer who were both big men that worked as doormen in one of Banff’s nightclubs and played Rugby with Patrick and Marco. They were all sitting in Patrick’s living room, having a drink after the dinner of hot dogs that had been cooked up on the fire pit in the backyard, quiet having enveloped them.

“All right, I’ll ask,” said six foot two Donovan in his Australian accent, flicking his dreadlocks out of his face. “What the fuck is going on? What the fuck happened, and where is the power, why did the cars stop, and why doesn’t my cell phone work? What the fuck, mate?” It would have been funny, if it weren’t for the fact that similar thoughts had been plaguing them all for most of the day.

“I hear that a big electrical explosion - like a power plant blowing up or something - can knock out cell phones and things,” answered Marco hesitantly. “Guy at work said that before we got cut.”

“An EMP could do it too. Nukes make EMP’s,” piped in Theos, eliciting a gasp from his sister.

“Do you think Calgary got bombed?” she asked, her eyes wide.

“Who the hell would bomb Calgary? Waste of a nuke,” scoffed Donovan, who had lived in the nearby city for a few months and had a great distaste for the place.

“We would have seen an explosion, nuclear or otherwise,” stated Patrick solidly. He hadn’t spoken much since inviting them to his home, and proceeded slowly. “Listen, I don’t think the ‘what’ is as important as the ‘what now.’ In a regular power-out you wait for a few hours, maybe overnight, and then they fix things, and everything get back to normal. This obviously isn’t a regular power out, or else everything else would still be working… so we need to look at things differently. For one, what if they can’t fix ‘it,’ whatever ‘it’ is?

“What’re you saying, Pat?” asked Will, whose northern Australian accent was slightly different from Donovan’s.

“I’m saying that Banff has a population of eighty five hundred, not to mention the transient workers who don’t tend to make it into the census. The National Park gets seven million visitors a year, the same as Honolulu. A cities worth of tourists in our little town, especially now that the seasons picking up. Everything comes by truck - food and stuff, yeah? So now that the trucks have stopped, how long do you figure the town can stay supplied? Keep feeding everyone that’s here?”

“Someone will come for us, right?” asked Sophia. “They can helicopter food in, or clear the highways.”

“What if they can’t?” replied Will. “There’s no way to know if this is just us, or a much bigger… thing. I think what Pat’s saying is that we ought to assume we’re on our own. Eh, grub?”

“Right,” said Patrick. “If we act now and it goes back to normal, we just look stupid, panicking. But if we don’t act, and everything stays changed, then we’re bloody well fucked.”

Everybody got quiet, thinking about it. A few quiet words were exchanged between Sophia and Theos. At length, Marco shuffled a bit on his stool and, looking at Patrick, asked the more complicated question of the night.

“So what do we do?”

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Re: Dies the Fire (Private)

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Tempest on Wed Sep 16, 2009 10:34 am

The darkness, just a few hours old, seemed to cloak the HMCS Nanaimo and her crew like a devouring beast as they clustered about a series of emergency candles on the sweepdeck as the captain spoke to them all, save for four sentries posted about the ship to listen for anything and everything. Fortunately the moon had moved from behind a cloud to help illuminate the scene and Vancouver Island could be easily seen yet still no lights shone from it.

"Attention on deck!" The bark of command came from the ships Chief Boatswain Mate, an angry looking Newfoundlander, as the Captain made his way towards them. Lieutenant Commander Shawn Colt looked much older then his 50 years as he waved them all into sitting positions before looking around at them, the candle light dancing feebly on his face.

"Ladies and Gentlemen. I have had our engineers going over every inch of the ship and it is apparent that whatever happened was not on this ship." He gestured towards the darkened land mass. "As you can see, the lights are out everywhere so this is not an isolated incident." His next words were suddenly cut off as a voice screamed from the forward end of the ship.

"Incoming! Brace for shock forward!" The ships company seemed as one to surge forward, bracing themselves as if a torpedo were incoming. No shock came, instead their eyes were drawn upwards as a massive aircraft sailed silently overhead, the words "FedEx" appearing briefly as it passed less then twenty feet over the ships mast. The aircraft struck the water 500 yards astern of the floating ship and seemed to simply disintegrate, pieces hurtling in every direction as the over powering silence of night was shattered by the scream of twisting steel. Next to the Captain the ships Executive officer gave a grunt and folded onto the deck, a jagged piece of aircraft protruding from his temple. Colt lost no time in acting.

"MasterSeaman Ryan, look to the XO. Buffer, get a boat in the water and..." He stopped as the buffer shook his head. "Not happening Captain," He said in his thick accent. "Cranes not working and all the engines are fucked, I tried em all."

The Captain stared towards the downed aircraft where flames were starting to spread across the water, there were no screams. His gaze drifted from the wreck to the buffer and then to Ryan who shook his head as he knelt next to the XO, the man was dead. He swore to himself. "Nanaimo ships company, round up your bedding, bring it out here to the sweepdeck. Heads are out, do your buisness over the side. Buffer, break out the weapons, arm the Bosun's, keep your watch rotation. If your not on watch, get some sleep. See that the XO is prepared for burial at sea, we will commit his body tomorrow."

The ships company set to work at once. Few words were wasted as hands were forced to trek through a ship now as black as night and more then a few heads met with hard steel. The Buffer led the Bosun's, Ableseaman Knight amongst them, into the hold were they used a pair of lock cutters to break into the small arms lockup and began passing weapons out into the night. Once all the weapons were on deck and the ammunition had been brought up from a darkened magazine the Buffer ordered a pistol issued to every officer and the remainder to be dispersed amongst the Bosun's. Knight was handed an MP5 and he did a swift function check then locked in a clip. He thought for a moment and then aimed the weapon overboard, set it to semi-auto, and pulled the trigger.

"Click."

He pulled the trigger again and the same thing happened. In surprise he ejected the round and tried again. Nothing. The buffer had noticed the two misfires and took a shotgun, aiming it into the water and pulling the trigger. The same empty click. "Fuck me... Right, all of you, aiming overboard, on my command. Fire!" A series of empty clicks greeted his order and he swore again. Just at that moment the deck officer appeared, pistol in hand. He glanced at the row of confused faces. "I don't suppose I need to tell you that the ammunition isn't working?"

The Buffer growled in agreement and pulled open an emergency kit, loaded a flare and aimed it high, pulling the trigger. Nothing again. His next words mirrored everyone's thoughts.

"What... the... fuck..."

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Re: Dies the Fire (Private)

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Moniker on Fri Sep 18, 2009 6:03 pm

“Well, I’m still working on some of the finer details but near as I can tell we ought to sort out priorities,” said Reed. “The first being food…”

It was dark by the time the plan, such as it was, had been laid out and agreed upon. The most important tenant was that they couldn’t save everyone, and in fact, in efforts to save themselves, they might be condemning others to death. It was also made clear that, between the lot of them, they pretty much knew, through association, nearly everyone in town and that the people they chose to bring along through this crisis would have to be chosen based on usefulness and reliability and in the cases of some, family.

Another key point was that everyone had to be fully committed to this plan, and be willing to defend themselves, each other, and their supplies with violence if necessary. Marco and Laura, both of which were peaceful people by nature, were squeamish about this possibility, but quickly accepted the necessity. It was speculated that the Town authorities - the Police, the Town Council, etc. - would be ineffectual in handling this problem if it continued unchanged, and so were to be considered enemies to be avoided if possible. It was also theorized that there might be other groups similar to there’s formed that would be competition, and that encounters might be violent. For this reason, they would be armed at all times and travel in pairs at the least.

They’d start foraging - or more accurately, looting - that night and then work on recruiting the next day, seeking out their friends on the Rugby team, who would be loyal and useful, as other friends and what family some of them had in town.

The first group, lead by Theos Yiorgos included his sister Sophia and Russel McKay. They’d go downtown to the Yiorgos family restaurant where their older brother was expected to be, watching the restaurant. After that they’d head up the road to McKay’s house to pick up his collection of firearms, his prize composite bow and a selection of hunting knives and other supplies. The group would try to stay off of the main roads, only nearing Banff Avenue to cross it, and would return to Reed’s house, which would be their temporary home base.

The second party was Patrick’s, with Will, Donovan and Marco. They would go back and forth from the nearby Safeway grocery store, ferrying the non-perishable food items that would likely be swarmed come morning. They had two backpacks - worn by Will and Donovan, who were the larger of the four, both over six feet and most able to move swiftly under weight if needed. Patrick had an old satchel that he wore around one shoulder. He also had a stab vest from when he used to work in one of the nightclubs - Will and Donovan would grab there’s the next day. Between them were a few knives, two hatchets, a roofing hammer and a crowbar. Theos and his group had been armed similarly.

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Re: Dies the Fire (Closed)

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Tempest on Mon Sep 28, 2009 3:51 pm

Morning arrived with a light rain and reduced visibility. Morale was not improved much by a cold breakfast, its hard to cook on modern ships when no power is too be had. The depression was finally broken by the Captain who ordered the entire ships company to congregate on the sweepdeck.

"Ladies and Gentlemen. I have come to a decision. I am ordering all of you, save for four, you know who you," The crew looked around in surprise at four of their number who were a little part from the rest, one Petty Officer and three enlisted. "The remainder of you are to take too the life rafts and reach shore. The Nanaimo is drifting out to sea and there is only enough food to last all of us another day, with the rations that we don't have to cook." Muttered agreements could be heard. "So those of you not selected to remain with me will be going ashore under the command of Lieutenant White." This brought sharp looks from a number of the members, the Lieutenant was not popular with the crew. "He will take you ashore to Tofino and with any luck you will be able to discover what has happened and summon help. Department heads will brief you further."

The crew broke up and surrounded their respective superiors who filled them in on the remainder of the plan. The Captain was going to remain behind with the four crew on the ship should things somehow return to normal. The remainder were going to go ashore and make their way to Victoria, if possible. It was not likely. The deck department, the Bosun's mostly, were armed with bayonets, ships axes, and whatever else they could find that could be used as a weapon. Officers were issued their standard swords. Then came the harder part, the life rafts had too be kicked from their mounts and then controlled before they floated away but slowly it all came together. Spare clothing, blankets, no food for those staying on the ship would need it, extra boots, and so on were loaded into them.

Before the crew departed however a ceremony was held on the sweepdeck as the XO's body was committed to the deep and the captain issued hand written orders to Lieutenant White. Then with a final set of farewells and promises of a return, which no one really believed, the crew of the HMCS Nanaimo took to the boats and cast off from the ship. For those paddling the coast was a haze in the rain, for those watching the grey minesweeper slowly fade into the mist it was an emotional moment. None thought they would ever see their ship or Captain again.

Fortunately the tide was on their side and the paddlers made good time as they charged the beach across the rain swept waves, managing to drive one of the rafts several feet up onto the sand, the other grounded about six feet from dry land. Those in that raft came ashore with wet feet. Spirits were low now as they looked towards Tofino, the nearest building just in view around the corner, no lights showed. With Lieutenant White in the lead they set off towards the town, trudging across sand backed hard by the waves so they made good time, only one person muttering in anger as the rain soaked through a small tear in their rain coat. The main group, twenty of them, mingled together, a collection of Petty officers, Officers and lower ranks who knew each other but were not really friends. Towards the rear, seemingly led by the towering Ableseaman Knight were the other ten, all firm friends.

As the town came into view a body could be seen on the beach and two of the crew were dispatched to investigate. What they found was a telling example of what Tofino was to look like. It was a woman, her clothes torn from her body, her throat cut. It was obvious she had been raped, when they couldn't say.

"Sweet jesus..." The words came from an engineer as they rounded the corner of land and found three more bodies. They began to hurry as they neared the town, screams and the smell of smoke was carrying to them. They climbed the bank and entered the first series of streets to find another body, this time of an RCMP officer. His pistol lay nearby and a crewman picked it up, frowning as it misfired. A scream sounded from ahead and two large bearded men appeared, dragging a young woman between them. The Lieutenant opened his mouth to say something but the Buffer, Knight and two others hot on his heels, brushed past him and began too run towards the three figures. They ignored the Lieutenants protest.

The big men looked up at the sound of fast approaching footsteps and dropped the girl, pulling crowbars from their waist bands as they did. One of them whistled and three more men appeared from inside the building, formerly a coffee shop and now what appeared to be a biker hang out. The largest of the bikers stared at the Navy fellows and raised an eyebrow. "Care to join us lads?" Knights axe smashed in his teeth.

The fight was short and violent. The Navy, with the element of surprise, downed the five men, "Hell Angels" emblazoned on their backs, two of them dying by Knights hand. Only the leader was still alive, his teeth mangled as he rolled about shrieking, spitting blood and pieces of tooth everywhere. The Lieutenant quickly jogged up just as the Buffer stood the fallen leader and rammed a breaching tool into his throat. "Buffer! There are laws here! You can't just go killing a man. That's murder!"

Before either of them could speak the girl, now wrapped in a blanket by two of the ships female crew members, spoke. "Murder? They have been raping and looting. They killed some police!" She was indignant but the Lieutenant wold not not drop the subject as he shook a finger at the Buffer.

"There is a chain of command here Buffer. You will not act against my orders!" The Buffer offered him a sarcastic apology and stood back as the Lieutenant ordered them to search the town.

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Re: Dies the Fire (Closed)

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Moniker on Tue Sep 29, 2009 9:28 pm

Reed and the other three men, armed as if they were going into a street fight, made their the short two blocks towards the grocery store in relative silence. They decided not to actually carry their weapons in their hands to avoid alarming anyone they passed. Besides, they each had a beer cracks for the walk there, since it was still Saint Patrick’s Day. It turned out to be a non-issue, as they didn’t run into anyone on the way. The sky and town was dark, with a few stars lending just enough to see by. The flickering light of candles or fireplaces could be seen in a small number of windows.

It was disconcerting, and they were each nervous behind their own quiet bravado. When they were across the street from the large building, they stopped to have a bit of a look.

“Could’ve used some binoculars, huh?” said Donovan.

“Next time,” said Reed. “Would be nice to be able to see inside. Mind you, it’s damn dark in there. Looks like one of the glass doors has been busted in. See there? We might not be alone in this. Weapons out lads, just in case. That’s our way in.”

Patrick put his beer down and slipped his fingers around the handle of his roofing hammer, spinning it around so the thin axe-like blade was forward. It was an Estwing, with a full metal handle other then the grip, and he figured it could take most anything. Marco and Will had the hatchets, and each of the three of them held a knife in their other hand. Donovan Ulmer, being the biggest and beefiest of the lot of them, held the large crowbar in two hands, ready. They moved cautiously across the street, then around the parking lot to approach the broken sliding glass door from the other side, so they wouldn’t walk right in front of the big glass windows and alert anyone inside.

There was a pause right before stepping into the shop. The four men looked at each other. At length, Patrick took a deep breath, then stepped onto the broken glass and inside, the others following. It was so dark, but they were somewhat familiar with the layout and advanced, knowing the flower display was to their left and the first till to their right. When their feet stopped crunching on the glass, they stopped to listen for noises inside the store.

After a minute, there was the sound of movement from the back of the shop. Patrick made a clicking sound with his tongue and moved right, between the tills and the isles. They slowed to a stop, bumping into each other a bit and muttering, before quieting down to listen again.

“Hey, um… whose there?” said a voice from the dark, accompanied by some muffled chuckles.

Patrick made a shushing sound before responding. “I’m the boss!” he shouted into the shop confidently. “Who the fuck are you and what are you doing in here?”

“We wanted to have a BBQ and needed some food, everything was closed! “ responded the voice, closer now. “So lay off!”

“You get the fuck out’ve here, boyo!” ordered Reed. “Or I’m going to break your face!” It had sounded to him like there were three of them, and they were creeping towards them. He whispered to the three who had been waiting quietly behind him, “Try not to hurt them too badly. We want them to run.”

“Suck it, jackass!” shouted the young man, apparently willing to commit violence for his BBQ. Patrick saw fast movement in the shadows, someone moving towards him quickly and swinging. Patrick, startled, brought his hammer up and swung back, catching what he thought was his attackers arm with the handle and forcing it to the side and down. With adrenaline pumping through him, he pulled back with his shoulder, reversing the momentum of his weapon and catching the back of the mans leg, dropping him to the ground. The man yelped, and Reed used the sound to help aim a kick to the side of the mans head.

He couldn’t see anything but moving shapes in the dark, and didn’t know who was who. Their was a scream of pain - he didn’t think it was one of his - and shouting. He called for them to sound off, as he backed away from the fallen man who was trying to scramble to his feet. There was a chorus of “I’m here” from the other three men, and the sound of their attackers running away.

“Let’s get the food and get the fuck out of here,” said Reed.

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Re: Dies the Fire (Closed)

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Tempest on Mon Oct 05, 2009 7:04 pm

Ableseaman Knight stepped quietly over the body of a second RCMP officer as he and two others gingerly entered the small towns police detachment. The cruisers outside had been burnt and the presence of a baton on the floor near at hand testified to the officers realization that his firearm did not work. Knight picked up the weapon and slid it into his belt.

The main office of the detachment was empty save for the body of a biker who was staring at the roof in some surprise, his guts had been spilled onto the floor by some sort of weapon and the Seaman were forced to step over the pile of offal now swarming with flies and towards the jail where they could hear voices.

Knight slowly stuck his head around the edge of the door, scanning the hallway which contained a third dead officer and another dead biker. Two more of the Hell Angels stood in front of a window making jeering remarks through the bullet proof glass. Knight slowly withdrew his head again and turned to the two men who were with him, both lads nearly as big as he. All of them were armed with fireman's axes and various other smaller weapons taken from around town as they had advanced towards the police station. He raised two fingers. The other two nodded. He raised five fingers now and pointed to the door then began to count down silently, axe ready in one hand. As his last finger dropped the three men gave a roar and charged around the corner and into the Bikers. The larger of the two managed to get his arm up to defend himself but an axe sliced it off at the bone and then crashed into his face. His scream was cut off as a second axe pulped his skull. The smaller of the two Bikers backed into the corner, dropping his weapon, a heavy crowbar, shaking his head and pleading for mercy. Knight bent down to pick up the fallen mans weapon, a ten pound sledge hammer. He hefted it in one hand then with a sudden speed he slammed the weapon down into the cowering enemies chest. The resulting scream turned to a gurgle as ribs punctured lungs and heart.

"You didn't have to do that..." Those words came from a man in a tattered suit who was gazing out from the celldoor window at them. Knight smiled grimly then replied. "I know, but it was hilarious."

The three sailors set about freeing those imprisoned in the jail. Four more RCMP, three politicians including the mayor in his tattered suit, and roughly 15 women who had been rounded up and forced into a cell together after being stripped naked. The police constables quickly armed themselves with what they could find in the looted detachment then, herding the civilians, followed the sailors outside to where the remainder of the ships company waited with the others they had been rescuing from around the town. The mayor at once told Lt. White about the murder of the unarmed Biker and the officer shot Knight a look that was returned with open hostility by the bigger man. The Lieutenant did not pursue the topic.

As the ships company spread through town they found more survivors of the Biker take over. Some Bikers were captured, but the search party led by Knight only seemed to return with live civilians and dead Bikers. White could not see it, he was to busy issuing orders, but the Buffer was watching the change. Knight worked with six others, all enlisted men like himself, and the Buffer was afraid of what he was seeing. Those men, the men he led, the men he was responsible for, were learning to kill and they were enjoying it.

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Re: Dies the Fire (Closed)

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Moniker on Tue Oct 06, 2009 7:52 pm

Patrick’s party had made two trips back from the grocery store, not seeing any others in the shop, by the time Theos and the others returned, with his older brother Yanni. They traded stories, with Reed relating what had happened during the first venture into the grocery store. Theos had seen violence as well - apparently the entirety of Banff Avenue had turned into, basically, a rave without the techno music.

When the lights went out, people had taken to the streets. Liquor stores had, in no short time, been looted and drums and other instruments had found their ways around to form a street party akin to the New Years Eve Mob, as the locals called it. The word anarchy would have been accurate to describe it, Theos said, with fires in the middle of the streets to give light. Police had failed to disperse the crowd, only managing to contain it somewhat and attempt to prevent looting. Yanni described an altercation however, between several revellers and a police officer. The officer had tried to prevent them from breaking into one of the nightclubs. When they resisted, a scuffle ensued and he was forced to draw his weapon. From their vantage point, the group had seen the officer draw his sidearm to no effect. Violence had ensued, with one of the ruffians being pepper sprayed but the officer being handcuffed to a metal fence by his own cuffs after being beaten.

As disturbing a development as this was, the party had then gone to McKay’s house, where he tested his firearms. All of them failed to fire properly - which he demonstrated in Patrick’s front yard with the pistol he’d brought. It was a frightening revelation. Electricity, combustion engines, now gunpowder. What else had that white flash wrought?

Everyone seemed somewhat shaken and, after speaking with Theos privately for a moment, decided that maybe they should hold off for the rest of the night. It was decided that they’d make a quick trip around the corner, loot a load from the liquor store as a group, taking turns guarding each other, then spend the night in, talk about what else they’d have to do. In the morning, they could spread out amongst the town and collect other recruits from people they knew. That would make their ‘foraging’ efforts that much more effective, not only the safety of having more hands and eyes.

Leaving Sophia and Marco behind, as the more skittish of their little group, the men made the trip to the liquor store. With so many of them, and armed, they had no problems - especially with the chaos that was all read happening. After stocking up on a selection of drinks for the night, they made it back to Reed’s house, with no idea of the time, and sat down to drink and talk. It wasn’t long before the drink took hold, and they were laughing and telling stories and jokes like they would during any other St. Patrick’s day.

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Re: Dies the Fire (Closed)

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Tempest on Sat Oct 10, 2009 12:21 am

The first sign of discontent within the ranks came less then twenty four hours after the freeing of the mayor from the RCMP jail. He had assumed immediate control of the situation, backed my Lieutenant White, and begun to draw people together. At first things had gone fairly well, the townsfolk who wished joined them and those who did not were allowed to leave with whatever supplies they wished. It was here the first serious problem reared its head. The vast majority of supplies had been hoarded by the bikers at the police station, the only real defensible building in town. It was here that Ableseaman Knight, his friends and the two youngest constables had been left to protect the supplies. They were seated around a small fire when six people appeared around the corner from the small parking lot where the Mayor and Lieutenant were sorting out the rest of the survivors. As they approached the hulking Knight climbed to his feet and hefted the sledge hammer over one shoulder, the blunt ends dark with dried blood.

"Halt! This building is under the protection of the Canadian Navy." He felt silly saying it but it had to be done as he planted both feet shoulder width apart, the remainder of the guard detail joining him. The leader of the small group approaching, a scrawny man with dreadlocks covered in a long toque scoffed.

"Yea, whatever man. Mayor buddy said we can take what we like and be on our way. Stop acting like you own the place." He tried to walk through the group but a second sailor gave him a hefty shove backwards and he staggered into two more of his party, similarly dressed. He stepped forward, nose to nose with the sailor. "Yea, do that again bitch and I'll tell your boss! I own you! I pay your salary!"

Something snapped. Knight seized the luckless hippy by the front of his shirt and threw him face first into the concrete in front of his horrified friends. The hippy quickly scrambled to his feet and backed off, swearing and gesturing rudely before giving Knight the finger.

"Your fucked buddy. I'm going to get your boss and we will see what the fuck happens then." He spat at Knights feet then stormed off for the parking lot from whence he had oame. He only made it four paces when the sledge hammer caught him between the shoulder blades. He collapsed without a sound, his spine snapped clean in two. The other five screamed and tried to run but were swiftly surrounded by the remainder of Knights guard company. Knight gestured to one of the hippy males who was being held in the grasp of a sailor who resembled a grizzly bear.

"Why did the Mayor say you could take food?" The hippy ignored him, instead staring at his fallen buddy and muttering. "Dude, you killed him... You fucking killed him... YOU FUCKING KILLED HIM!" He screamed the last few words and lunged at Knight who simply thrust the head of his hammer into his attackers teeth, shattering teeth and jawbone. The hippy dropped screaming, Knight giving him a contemptuous kick before looking at the sailor who been holding him. "Kill him." An axe flashed once.

A third man was selected and faced with the hatred in Knights face he began to talk at once. "Mayor said anyone who wants to leave town can do so, and take whatever supplies they need. Said it would be good for you to have less mouths to feed." Knight seemed to consider the mans explanation for a moment then shrugged and stepped back as if to let the man up. Suddenly he spun the hammer in a mighty two handed swing that connected squarely with the top of its victims head, crushing it like paper. The three remaining group members, all girls, took off screaming for the parking lot and Knight let them go as he grinned at his comrades.

"Three less mouths to feed. Simple really." Chuckles ran round the small group.

It did not take long for the Mayor, in company with the Lieutenant and a mob of towns people to appear, headed for the police station led by the three girls. Anger was written across their faces and White yelled for all but Knight to step back. No one moved. The crowd ground to an uneasy halt as they faced off against the nine biggest men still alive, all heavily armed, all with bloodied weapons.

"You had no cause to kill these men! We have laws for gods sake!" The words came from the Mayor as he appealed to Knight. "Lay down your weapon, you are under arrest for murder, I will see to it you get a fair trial."

Whatever the Mayor was expecting it was not the laugh that came from Knight and his men. The big sailor stepped forward and spat on one of the dead men at his feet. "Bastards were trying to skip town with precious foodstuffs. I dont suppose your worship thought that maybe we might need that food?" From the mutterings of agreement throughout the crowd the Mayor knew Knight was heavily supported in his opinion.

"Regardless. You cannot just kill a man!" The Mayor was getting visibly upset so Lieutenant White stepped forward and addressed Knight. "Sailor. You will throw down your weapon and surrender yourself at once! That's an order!"

Again Knight laughed. More men had moved to stand behind Knight from the crowd, even some women. It seemed that more then a few grasped how serious their predicament might be. White swore and balled his hands into fists.

"Damnit Knight! There is a chain of command and you will follow it!"

This time there was no laugh, instead the big sailor took a step forward and stared directly at White, hatred written across his features as he spoke the words that would bring about a near civil war within a week.

"The chain of command sir, you know what it is? Its the chain I go and get then beat you with until you realize I am in command."

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Re: Dies the Fire (Closed)

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Moniker on Tue Oct 13, 2009 10:07 pm

Reed woke up with the sun lighting up his room through the window. It hurt his head. He rolled, reaching for water, and promptly fell from his bed, causing a ruckus as he landed on Theos. As the night grew on, eventually they’d decided to pack it in. Marco, Sophia and Patrick piled onto his big bed, Theos on the floor, while Will took the couch and the other two men took up in the guest room in the basement.

The two men untangled themselves grumpily, then set about waking the others up and sorting out something to eat. They talked, checked all the electronics, stepped out on the deck to listen for cars, and even tried the pistol one last time, just to be sure. After breakfast, they made the plan for the day. For the most part, it was a matter of recruitment. They’d gather friends, what few family they seemed to have in town, and have them meet at Patrick’s once more, where they would be briefed on what was going on, and hopefully convinced to join them. They all wrote up copies of a note explaining things to a degree with instructions, in case some of the people they were after weren’t home. They would go armed, but not openly so, and in groups no smaller then two.

Accompanied by Will and Theos, Patrick went looking for people. Their route took them to the other side of town, across the Bow River. They met a few people on the way, some they avoided conversation with, and others they made a brief explanation and told to be at Reed’s home later. It was strange, however. The town was ghostly. There were a few people stumbling alone, obviously wandering somewhere under the influence of a strong hangover. Others were wandering about looking frightened. There was broken glass everywhere, and it looked like a few of the shops had been half-heartedly looted. Police and bylaw were patrolling the messes of Banff Avenue and Bear Street. The group had three specific stops to make.

The first was to the home of Reed’s friend, Thomas Knight, who was out west with the navy - another of his many friends whose fate was a mystery. The man had a large family, and they were capable and Reed wanted to see if they could help him. Unfortunately, when the small group arrived, the house was empty. Even their small terrier was missing, which meant they were likely out of town. He found the spare key and they explored the house. There were a few weapons of the same sort found in Reed’s shed, but there were also some rare treasures. Thomas, like his friend Patrick, had a passion for the past, with a strong interest in the medieval. They both collected weapons and various paraphernalia, but while Patrick’s had thus far been display pieces, Thomas’ collection was fully functional and sharpened. He had an arming sword, of the sort made famous during the crusades and what most people thought of as a ‘knight’s sword.’ There was also the Seax that Patrick had given him as a gift, a weighty blade that was just short of a foot long and equipped with a decorated leather sheath. The third prize was the Viking style round shield, with its metal boss and central grip. It had a red horses head on a black field. It wouldn’t have been Reed’s choice of heraldry, but Thomas had been fond of it. It made the scruffy man thoughtful, before they moved on. Patrick kept all of Knight’s equipment for himself, being the only one who knew anything about using a sword and shield.

Once leaving the Knight house, locked, the three men moved to their second stop. The house was rented out by two of the women from the Rugby team. The first was Kat, who Patrick somewhat fancied, but the real reason was Georgia, the Badger - so called because of her former university sports team in Ontario. She had a rapier, and apparently knew how to use it quite well. They were both good friends, and after a bit of explanation, the girls agreed to join up. They’d search their house and get some supplies together and be ready to go when the three men returned with their last two ‘recruits.’

Most people they’d brought to their way of thinking had had no family in Banff. The very few who did said they were either out of town on a trip of some sort, or missing, like Patrick’s father. Michael Reed had been on a day trip to Calgary when the white flash hit, and Patrick had no idea how far from town his father was when the cars stopped. There were more Reed’s in town, however. Patrick’s aunt and uncle, as well as their two daughters, his cousins.

As the three men were approaching his uncle’s house, Theos quieted them with two short whistles. There was an argument going on in the driveway. The most obvious voice was his younger cousin Sara, who was fifteen years old and quite capable of being a little banshee. He could also hear Lisa, who was sixteen and more level headed. Lisa was arguing with a boy with Sara doing her utmost to confuse things. The men got steadily closer without drawing attention, and Patrick eventually worked out the identity of the third person. He didn’t know his name, but he knew he was a little waste, one of a group known as the ‘skidlets’ who were almost a youth gang. Mostly they prayed graffiti and caused trouble, no real danger. This one as maybe eighteen years old at most.

“Little shit,” muttered Reed as the pair started shoving each other, causing him to sped up his walk. When the ruffian grabbed between his older cousins legs, Patrick broke into a run. Sara tried to jump on hi, but was shoved away and backhanded across the face, the motion of it turning him enough that he could see the broad form charging at him from the road. By then, it was too late.

With a roar of anger, Patrick put out both hands and caught the scrawny form around the throat, his momentum driving the helpless person against the stone of the house. The impact dazed the ‘skidlet’ but it wasn’t long before he started to struggle again. Patrick couldn’t see or think anymore, yelling his rage directly into the face of the one who thought he could touch his cousins that way. Eventually, the panicked kicking slowed, then stopped, and Patrick realized he could feel the hands of Theos and Will trying to pull his arms apart. When clarity came flooding back to him, he let his suddenly sore hands go loose, and the limp body dropped to the ground. Will exhaled with a puff of his cheeks, and steered the two shocked girls away from the scene to their door.

“Stop starring at him like a stunned cunt,” said Theos, clapping Patrick to roust his foggy mind. “I’d do the same if someone touched Sophia like that. Let’s get him into the ditch behind the place. Hopefully nobodies seen us.”

They dumped the body, and went inside to speak to his panicking cousins. They calmed eventually, and told Reed that their parents were in B.C. camping. Patrick appraised them of the situation and, without any better ideas, they agreed to come to his house. They packed, picked up Kat and the Badger and went back down town with little conversation. By then, Patrick’s nerves had calmed, and he wondered at himself. In books and movies, everyone felt sick and nauseous when they killed someone. He’d been a little light headed, but that was left-over adrenaline. It was just then that he realized that he really didn’t want the world to go back to normal.

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Re: Dies the Fire (Closed)

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Tempest on Wed Oct 14, 2009 1:14 am

March 26th

The mutiny, when it came, was not the result of any food sharing argument but rather the debate over the possession of two sailing sloops belonging to S.A.L.T.S, the Pacific Swift and the Pacific Grace. The two vessels served as part of the Christian "Class Afloat" program and were gorgeous sailing vessels that had plied the sea lanes around the Islands for year and now they were the two largest vessels around, capable of carrying 35 people on overnight deep sea voyages. They had limped into Tofino two days after the food riot out front of the Police station. They had been met by the Lieutenant White and the Mayor of Tofino, both men warily keeping an eye on Ableseaman Knight and his force of sailors and police officers that had been granted status as the towns only law enforcement group. In theory they were led by the Buffer but no one bothered to hide that Knight was truly in charge.

The two vessels and their crews had been eagerly welcomed and the crews taken in, surprisingly without much grumbling from the those who followed Knight. The big man had taken to wearing a heavy chain slung over one shoulder as a reminder to the officers and politicians about his earlier threat to beat them with the "chain of command". The ships crews had been easily welcomed, half of their number where students and the rest the professional sailors who taught and maintained the vessels. The tired and hungry arrivals had been given food and lodging, as far away from the Police station where the troublesome members of the new community were. But it had not stopped the younger crew members and indeed a good few of the students from making their way over and talking with Knight and his group.

At first it had been harmless stuff, chit chat and the like, chopping wood, moving cars, bringing in supplies, everything that was needed to keep the mind occupied and prepare the town for whatever was to come. The conversation took an ugly twist however when the group found out the Mayor and Lieutenant White were planning to allow the two vessels to leave within the next couple of days to return to Victoria. Some of the younger sailors from the Christian ships and a dozen or so students had quickly grasped the significance of the strange flash and agreed with Knight and his comrades that too send the two ships anywhere at this time would deprive the fragile community of their use. And a fragile community it had become. The two factions were forcing a split in the people and though in principle the Mayor and White were in charge there was no doubt which group proved most of the brawn for the community. Something would have to be done and soon. When something was done it happened swiftly and brutally as night fell on the 26th.

"Quickly now. Don't dawdle." The voices were whispered as several members of the Mayors most trusted supporters, along with several of the Navy crew who had remained loyal to the Lieutenant, urged the sailors of the two Christian vessels to hurry towards their boats. More then half of them were missing, presumed to be with Knight and his lads who had been ordered to haul a semi-truck full of produce into town.

Someone tripped in the dark and cursed only to shushed by a goodly number of folk as he did. They did not want to take any chances of being spotted. If the ships left of their own accord by night then Knight could not blame the Mayor and the loss of them might weaken his position enough to bring more townsfolk onto the Mayor's side.

"Shit..." The voice came from the end of the jetty where the ships boats had been tied up and Lieutenant White spun to see torches appearing at the far end of the street and angry shouts echoing towards them.

"Hurry now! Hurry!" White urged the reminder of them towards the boats, quietly climbing in himself along with the Mayor and a few others. They would travel out to the ships and then simply return to town via their own small boat once the ships were clear. "Push off." He hissed the words and a sailor gave a heave to get the last boat clear of the pier. It took no time to get more then a dozen yards from the jetty before the mob reached it, giving a howl of rage as they saw the boats were clear away. White would have smiled but no where in the crowd could he see the hulking form of Knight.

The boats reached the Pacific Swift first and those in the boats began to clamber over the sides, vanishing over the top rail, once or twice someone gave an oaf as if they had tripped on something in the dark. Next stop was the Pacific Grace and they boats repeated the maneuver.

White was the last one in the boat. He smiled to himself as he saw the figures on the shore staring out at them and shouting before he turned and climbed up the side of the Grace. He had nearly reached the top when two sets of strong hands reached down to heave him bodily over the rail and face first into the deck. He felt and heard his nose break, only dimly aware of the lights being lit around him and the silent ranks of kneeling figures, figures he had just helped from the boats. Around them stood heavily armed men and leading them was none other then Ableseaman Knight.

"Welcome aboard sir. Can't have you running off with so many helpful hands and such a nice load of food. Oh, and such lovely ships!" The big man's face had broken into a broad grin as he spoke and he waved towards shore to acknowledge the cheers from the mob on the jetty and a similar boarding party on the Swift. Then he turned back as the Mayor, also a prisoner, sputtered in anger.

"Young man! We were not planning to leave! Simply to see the ships out of harbour then return, so as to avoid exactly what happened here!" He struggled to his feet and stared in hot anger at Knight. "You are a Canadian sailor! Where is your sense of duty!"

Knight seemed to ponder this for a long moment then shrugged. "You could be right your worship but last I checked, the world had come to an end and Canada as we know it is finished. Now, don't get me wrong, I love my country first and foremost but some bizarre event has made this my country." He trust a finger towards Tofino. "And made these people my friends and family." He gestured around at the assembled force of armed persons. "Now," he said, addressing the kneeling captives, "Who wants to work with me to make this country we have been given into a great thing? Something we can be proud of, something that looks after us!?"

There was a silence then a big burly man, the sailing master of the Grace, grunted and laughed. "Untie my hands and you have me on your side Mister Knight. Never did like Victoria anyways." Knight smiled and bent down to cut the mans bonds on his own, pulling the man to his feet and clasping his hand. "That's the spirit Mister Knowles. The Grace is of course still yours to master."

Other members swiftly followed Knowles lead. Many of them had been lost in this strange swirl of events and were struggling to come to terms with it. It seemed that this Knight fellow had, and was willing to guide them if they would listen. A similar event was taking place on the Swift until, one by one, every single member of the party who had set out to leave on the ships had elected to stay, every member but three.

The Mayor, one of his closest friends and Lieutenant White refused. Instead the Mayor choose to continue trying to reason with the sailor. "Look here Knight. The world may have ended but there is no sense in ruining the very democratic institutions we have worked for thousands of years towards. After all, men like me are chosen to lead for a reason!" White wisely kept this mouth shut.

Knight stared at the Mayor for along time then slowly pulled the chain from around his body and wrapped part of the length around one hand, the other trailing about three feet long, its heavy links rattling on the deck. A horrible look had come over his face as it did. "Do you recall the conversation we had about the chain of command Mister Mayor? Well here it is!"

His last words were a roar and he lashed out with the chain. The Mayor screamed and tried to block the blow with his body but the chain shattered his arm in two places. He dropped to his knees, the chain flashing again to smash into the side of his face as he went down hard. Again and again the chain slashed home, beating the mans head into a pulp. Finally Knight seemed to snap out of his rage and turned on White. "Any questions sir?"

The officer shook his head in terror, he had pissed his breeches and the smell of urine mixed with that of blood as the towering man approached him. He looked around him for help but he could see the abject curiosity and awe stamped on all the watching faces. Things had changed but the human lust for blood had not, they were enthralled with the opening killing. He tried to scramble backwards, away from the bloodied chain and grinning horror above him. He quickly ran out of space and hit the bulkhead and could only mew in terror as Knight reached down and hoisted him into the air with a grunt, holding the officer above his head with contempt. Carefully he negotiated his way to the stern which faced both the Swift and the shoreline.

There he paused, lit from behind by the dancing flames of those on the Grace, and filled his lungs. "People of Tofino! The world has changed! Things are no longer as they should be and we must make a new world! Join me! Join me and we shall make it a world from the chaos! Make a nation from the ruins of another! Make a people from those amongst us today! Are you with me?"

How anyone could have resisted such an invitation is up for debate but the chanting that began to fill the air, led by carefully placed members of Knight's own band began to echo across the harbour.

"Knight! Knight! Knight! Knight!"

He breathed in the cool night air, the gentle breeze wafting the smell of wood smoke and pine to him as the officer struggled in his hands above. He tensed and then with a mighty heave threw the man into the water. The scream was muffled by the roar of approval from the watchers. He raised a fist in acknowledgment, still clutching the bloodied chain and found himself wearing a great smile and realized for the first time that he was well and truly enjoying the end of the modern world.

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Re: Dies the Fire (Closed)

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Moniker on Wed Oct 14, 2009 2:13 pm

St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Banff, Alberta
March 26th
Eight days after the Change


“Oh shit, oh shit, oh shit, oh fuck!” was the panicked chorus coming from Theos, echoed in various forms by others as he and Marco dragged his brother Yanni through the big double doors of the Church. They were both shirtless and appeared to be missing a bit of their equipment - the cloth had been needed to bandage around Yanni’s abdomen, as well as the shirt from the fourth member of their day party, a friend of Marco’s from work. He limped in behind them, bleeding from a cut on his thigh and another on his arm. They were calling for a medic - which they sort of had. Out of their group of perhaps forty people, three had various stages of medical training. One was in med school, one had been a paramedic in New Zealand, and a third had been a medic in the British Army. They had a few physiotherapists that helped them as skilled nurses.

The Army medic was the first to Yanni, sliding into position on his knees, bag all ready open. Gingerly, the man lifted up the make-shift bandage. Patrick Reed came rushing into the room from the far side of the Sanctuary wearing only pyjama pants. He’d been sleeping, having been on a night raid, and rousted himself at the sound of the yelling. He arrived just in time to see the blood welling out of Yanni like a fountain. The medic told Marco to put as much pressure on the wound as he could while Theos, and then Sophia as well, spoke to their brother. The medic asked how long ago he’d been hurt, then gave the big man a shot of something from his bag. Patrick had seen the man work, and even on small injuries like the one Marco’s friend was being treated for, he rushed. His actions towards Yanni were sluggish and half hearted, and Patrick knew the big man wasn’t going to make it. Within a minute or two - what seemed like forever with the demoralizing sound of the Yiorgos’ siblings emotional voices - Yanni was dead.

When Sophia, who was completely distraught, had regained herself at least to be led to comforting arms and voices, Theos stood and started towards the door. Patrick had to grab his arm to stop him.

“Where are you going?” he asked his friend.

“I’m going to kill him!” replied Theos with a snarl. “I know what he looks like. I saw him, I know what he looks like. I’m going to kill him.”

“Wait, wait!” urged Reed, having to grab him again. “Wait. Who did it? Do you know?”

Theo’s normally pale face was red with emotion as he looked down at his brothers body, being tended by the medic and a ‘nurse.’ “The bandanas. It was those pricks with the white bandanas,” answered the man coldly, looking so much older then Patrick could ever remember.

“We’ll get them, mate,” said Patrick, loud enough for those nearby. “We’ll get them together, and this time they won’t be able to hide from us. Rest now, clean up. We’re going to dot his right.”

Convinced that Theos wouldn’t go out and do something foolish, Reed turned back towards the Sanctuary, only to see a crowd gathered. A sudden flash of anger went through him and he snarled. “Back to your business! Let them be! General meeting in an hour…”

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Re: Dies the Fire (Closed)

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Tempest on Wed Oct 14, 2009 3:29 pm

March 30th

The faith placed in Knight by the people of Tofino was not ill spent. After the exciting night following the mutiny they had met for the first time as a united people under the leadership of Knight. He had wasted no time in organizing the townsfolk into work parties that benefited their abilities. Stronger men were assigned to haul materials from surrounding hotels back to the main town. Women and children were assigned to tasks of sorting supplies, finding places to store them, accounting for it all and making notes of how much they had. Others with good organizational skills, such as former town council, were set to making a good list of folk and their skills. Among them all walked the "enforcers", the men most loyal to Knight, armed men who helped kick down barricaded doors and take what was beyond them be it materials, food or people. Then there was their leader, the man who moved amongst them with his chain of office still slung on one shoulder, sledge hammer on his back, as he seemed to be everywhere at once, working alongside every member of the community no matter how petty their task might seem. To everyone's surprise he took no extra privileges for himself as the leader, contrary to the Mayor who had taken the best house.

To the keen observer the community was changing. Many of the modern ideals of morality, free speech, and the like was slowly being stamped out. Folk who had complained about Knight's take over fell one by one to strange accidents, more then a few drowned while out for "walks" in the late night. Slowly those voices were silenced and absolute control fell over the small community. When a direct challenge to Knight came it happened privately and came from a very unexpected source.

"You planned it all didn't you?' At the french accent Knight looked up from the task at hand, braiding a rope for use in a lifting tackle, to find himself looking into the face of Emelie Molyneux. She had been on the Nanaimo with him, a naval communicator by trade and was certainly the finest looking woman who he had sailed with, now quite possibly the brightest. He put leaned back slightly on his stool. He had chosen this spot, on one of the jetties that still held four useless seaplanes, for its peace and quiet.

"Planned what?" His voice was innocent but anyone who had known him long enough would be well aware of what he was capable of. As far as he was concerned only his mother, father and childhood friend Patrick knew him that well.

"The riots, the chanting, this!" She waved a hand towards the town, a strand of brown hair uncoiling from her ear to gently float across her face with the breeze. "I have watched everything that happened and you always seemed to know the next move or the next words to say. I have never believed in chance nor coincidence and I know you Thomas." She had deliberately used his first name and he smiled. "I know that beneath the man who served his country so well there is a man who will fight and die for us all but why did so many others have to die as well?"

Knight considered her carefully, his fingers now still on the rope that lay across his knee's. "Well done Emelie. I would think you are the first outside of my circle who figured it out." He knew Emelie well, they had spent a decent amount of time together and he had often ribbed her over her French heritage. She was a clever woman, several years younger then him but one of the few French aboard the ship he had been able to stand. "To answer your question, yes, I did plan it."

She nodded, having already known he would not deny it. Knight had rarely been one for subtlety, instead telling things as he saw it, something that had not endeared him to some of the other crew. She asked the question again that had bothered her the most. "But why did so many others have to die. The Mayor, the Lieutenant, all the Bikers, those who have had "accidents". Dont play me Thomas, those were not accidents. Every single one of those people disliked you."

To her surprise Knight began to laugh. She had rarely heard him laugh even before the change and it was an oddly comforting sound. "They all died so that we might have this." He gestured at the town, the ships, the work parties nearby. "They died for order, for control, for stability in a time when we have no room for squeamishness."

She found herself being persuaded by Knight as she knew the others had. His skill with words was not matched by anyone, he had after all spent four years in university learning how to convince others of things they did not believe. She shook her head as if to clear it then stepped forward and with speed that Knight would never match she slapped him hard across the face.

"That is for being an arrogant pig." She swung with her other hand, "And that is for murdering all those people." She would have struck a third time but the big man grabbed her arm in mid air and pulled her close to him to that she was crushed against his chest. She gasped slightly and felt her heart jump slightly despite herself and she quickly twisted away with a curse in French and glared at him. "Keep your filthy hands off me!"

"Ah, but it was you who struck me Emelie. I merely defended myself." Knight had begun to walk towards her now and she backed up slowly, well aware that the only escape route was on the other side of him, or into the chilly harbour water. She made to lash out at him again but he closed the gap with a quick step and she felt herself reach the end of the jetty and begin to fall backwards. His hand caught hers as she teetered for balance. With a heave he pulled her back onto the jetty and then stepped back. "Can't loose you now. Not when your turning into such a fiery spirit."

She huffed and eased her way around him. She had come to do what she had meant too and gotten much more. There was a fire in her now, she had loved the way he handled her and saw the animal lust she could see glimmering in the corners of his eyes but she would not give in, not now. She fired off a few more curses in French and made her way off the jetty.

Knight watched her go and a huge smile crossed his face as he threw back his head and laughed. Life had taken a turn somewhere and he was enjoying this new road immensely.

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Re: Dies the Fire (Closed)

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Moniker on Thu Oct 15, 2009 2:32 am

Banff Administration Grounds
Midnight, March 26th
Eight days after the Change


Twelve men had been sent on the raid out of St. Mary’s. Reed was there to lead them, not that he much needed to in these little gorilla operations. The group was picked to specifically include veterans of such operations as this, that needed a measure of stealth in the darkness. Theos, of course, was there, being the swiftest and most agile, not to mention the very thought of what he’d do if Reed had refused sent a shiver up the bearded mans spine. Other members of the inner circle were there too, including Russ McKay and Will, hunters that they were. Big Donovan also, but more for his strength then subtlety. They rest were those who had distinguished themselves, either by a lack of squeamishness or pure ability, like the Badger with her rapier.

They were hiding in the brush and trees near to a path that led through the grounds from one of the suburbs to Bow Bridge. They’d seen White Bandana’s here before, but during the day. Since they didn’t know precisely where the Bandana’s were keeping themselves, or even if they had a central location, they just had to try different places and hope they saw a patrol of some sort. Coming across the river had become hazardous.

In the Town Hall on Bear St., a remnant of the municipal government had its headquarters - made up of some members of the old Town Council, some of the Bylaw and Police officers, and various ‘concerned citizens.’ Their efforts had largely been to rally and unite the other factions within the town, which so far had been a momentous failure. Across the other side of Banff Avenue, somewhere on either Muskrat, Otter, or Buffalo St. was a sort of ‘neighbourhood militia’ which had obviously lost faith in the Town government for keeping their property safe. Between the two groups, it was immensely difficult to get across the bridge, so they’d decided to circumvent it. Taking canoes from the dock near the hospital, which was in their territory, they went silently down river, pulling in near the picnic shelters in relative silence.

They’d since moved from place to place quickly with minimal conversation. It wasn’t until they were on the far corner of the Grounds, where the fence ended and they could see Phil’s restaurant that they had any luck. There were four of them, all men. In the poor light, it was hard to see anything else about them other then their relatively normal size, and that they each bore a strip of white cloth, either on their heads or around their arms. Patrick gave two clicks of his tongue, telling his fellow raiders when to act. The first part of the plan to lure them into the cover of the trees, which fell to Georgia, the Badger.

“Hello, is there someone there?” called out the woman in a fake frightened voice. They responded by ordering her to identify herself. “My names Georgia. Help! I think my ankles broken, and I’m stuck down here in the trees. Please help me get out?”

The ambuscade was tense and quiet, the Badgers voice sounding sweet and helpless. They listened as the four men talked, then argued briefly before announcing that they’d come help her. Three of the men started to descent the small hill into the trees and Reed heard the faint draw of Russell’s bow. “Where are you?” asked their leader, effectively betraying his exact possession. There was a grunt and the sound of rustling indicating that someone had struck, giving the rest the cue to act. Reed rushed forward and stabbed the leader through the chest with the large blade of his seax. At the same time, somebody knocked had knocked out the other two in the gully while Russell loosed an arrow into the fourth man. His attempted scream was just a gurgle and as he fell to the ground, two of Reed’s men rushing up to quickly drag the body into the woods and retrieve the arrow for Russell.

“Did you get them?” asked Reed as he lowered the body of the patrols leader to the ground. “Are they alive?”

“Yeah, they’re alive,” replied Donovan from somewhere in the dark.

“Fuckin’ eh,” said Patrick. “Tape ‘em up, then lets get our asses back to the canoes.”

- - - - -


The captives weren’t taken back to St. Mary’s, but were instead brought to an abandoned house a short distance down the road. They’d woken up before they arrived, but between being bound, gagged, and blinded with generous strips of duct tape, they weren’t much trouble. It had been a surprise, however, to learn that one of them was the one who killed Yanni earlier that very day. Theos had needed to be physically restrained from opening the man up with his large, cleaver-like knives. It was only when Patrick had agreed to allow him the duty of interrogation that Theos calmed.

Yanni’s killer was brought to the boiler room in the basement of the house, while the other struggling prisoner was set down in the corner of the kitchen where most of the men lingered. Before Theos was allowed free reign with his prisoner, Reed reminded him of the information they needed. As his friend nodded and turned away, Donovan called his name and tossed him an apron, which on the front read “Danger! Men Cooking.”

The man in the basement screamed for the better part of an hour. In that time, their other captive had all ready answered all of their questions and was now a sobbing wreck, still in the corner. Reed went down to check on Theos and get a report of what he learned. Gingerly, he knocked on the door.

“Oy. You all right in there, mate?” asked Patrick.

“Yeah. He’s dead,” came the answer through the door. “I got what I wanted, and what we needed. They’re hotel staff mostly, from the Fairmont and the Rimrock. There’s maybe two hundred of them, and they’ve been stockpiling food, just like us.”

“Good lad… the other fella’ said the same thing. Wrap him in garbage bags, then yell for a hand bringing him up. I don’t want the other boys to see.”

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Re: Dies the Fire (Closed)

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Tempest on Fri Oct 16, 2009 4:44 pm

Tofino
0900 Hours, April 2nd
15 days after the Change


Work on the town of Tofino had begun to progress swiftly in the temperate climate. Looking back, the crew of the HMCS Naniamo could have come ashore in a worse location. There was plenty of food to be had to and shortage of timber since the town was currently so spread out. The leadership of Knight didn't hurt much either. The big man was making his rounds of the various projects on one of the sixty horses they had discovered at a trail riding operation. Only a few had any spirit left and he rode the largest of them, a pure white stallion he had named "Storm".

"Damn fine work. I don't think we would make it without you lot!" Knight was currently seated on Storm's back, looking down at the gathered fishermen of the community. The majority of them had made it their living before the change, they had been forced to learn how to use smaller sail boats for their trade now. They all beamed up at him. Though many were older they could not dispute Knight's natural leadership. He made every one of them feel appreciated and valuable. Always quick with a good word as he was to criticize he had never asked them to do anything he wouldn't do himself. "If you keep this up we should be able to see through the summer without any problems, heck, even the winter! This community lives and dies with you gentlemen." He touched his hat, a tam he had found that matched his uniform. The fishermen touched their forelocks to him at once and gave him a rousing cheer as he kicked back his heels and rode on followed by his leading adviser, a man twenty years his senior, and two bodyguards.

The town had boasted a population of 1,500 locals and roughly 10,000 tourists prior to the Change. That had dropped rapidly as Knight and his forces "encouraged" the more useless of the population to move south. Thousands had already perished, choosing to stay in their hotels to await a rescue that never came and it was always a sobering experience to enter hotel rooms where folk had just laid down to die. The task of looting those rooms and bringing anything that could be useful back to town had fallen to volunteers and it was they who Knight would speak with next.

As he rode up to their work site, only a kilometer south of town, the workers assembled and he could see the strain in their faces. He offered them a grim smile as he halted Storm. "Been a rough day fellows?" They nodded and a foreman spoke up. "Aye sir. Been turning back refugee's most of the day, haven't got much done in the way of collecting. Been some useful people processed in though."

Knight nodded. The worst part for the collection crews, they also functioned as the refugee control squads. They all went armed and turned away people who had no skills useful to the community, and in some cases were forced to kill them to prevent then trying to reach town. He knew that one of their number had broken down and killed himself. The man had been forced to turn an elderly couple away only to find them dead the next day in a ditch. They simply stopped wishing to live. His body had joined theirs in the ditch. Others seemed to relish in it and he had heard the stories of atrocities being let loos eon the refugee's by his men, the rape of women followed by their killing, the murder of folk for their equipment or horded food. He had chosen to ignore it until he witnessed it first hand. He had killed his own man on the spot and threatened the others with the same. The rumours had dropped off but there was nothing he could do to stop it all together. These were going to be tough times and people would deal with it their own way. Emelie had after all pointed out that his rise to power was spattered with the blood of innocents.

"What sort of skilled bodies did you get today?" Knight spoke to the foreman who brightened a bit and then pulled a list form his pocket. Knight had told him what sort of people could be admitted and he had done his best to keep close to it, his position as foreman depended on his cooperating with Knight after all. "Well sir, four fellows who can draw a bow well enough. Six others who meet the requirements for larbourer. Three who have some combat experience, all SCA types. Four women who will be easy enough to find mates for and two who worked in Victoria as ship wrights on all manner of sailing craft." Knight nodded his head in appreciation. The decision to allow women in based on their ability to have children had been sticky but since the town boasted nearly twice the number of men, he needed balance. Men tended to squabble less if they had women to distract them.

"Well done Mister Roberts. Carry on." He touched his hat to the collectors and they tugged their forelock in reply. It had been easy to instill a Navy sense of discipline in the town, what with 28 other sailors about. He rode on.

He last stop of the day was the "sorting post". A ridiculously simple name for the most complex operation in town. Here, in the high school field, all the material being brought in was being sorted into categories and the new arrivals would receive their work assignments. It was just across the street from the police station where the food was being stored in the cells that were beneath ground and remained cool. Here was also the heaviest concentration of troops, most of the sailors led by the Knight's closest friend Ableseaman Cairns. They ensured no one got out of line, tried to steal anything not allotted to them and most of all, to make sure the newest arrivals behaved. More then one had begun shouting about how this was a free country and no one could tell them what job they had to do. A couple killed openly had stopped up that noise.

"All well Mister Cairns?" The second in command grinned and laughed. "Aye aye sir." Cairns sketched a mock salute as his friend. "Emelie is doing a fine job keeping the ladies in line." Knight looked over a stack of boxes marked "mens clothing" to see Emelie ordering two other women to reorganize a pile that had collapsed. The French girl had turned out to be a fairly decent leader and she loved organizing, she had been an obvious choice for the "sorting post". Though not in charge she was a sort of assistant manager. She evidently felt the eyes on her and turned. She and Knight had not spoken since their confrontation on the docks and the brilliant smile on her face vanished to be replaced by a glare as she caught sight of Knight. He laughed as she stuck out her tongue and went back to work. "I'd wreck that chick." The two men laughed again.

The two men stood and chatted for several minutes before Emelie appeared suddenly from behind the boxes of mens clothing. She eyed Cairns for a moment then stepped up to the two. "Thomas. We need more people." She didn't make it a question, it sounded like an order and Cairns rolled his eyes and excused himself with a muttered, "She's your damn problem buddy."

Knight stared at her for a second then jerked his head towards the line of thirty or so people waiting for job assignments. "That's convenient since there happens to be four ladies in that line who will be needing work." She snorted. "You only give us girls. You think this is lowly womens work?" She actually sounded angry and Knight shook his head as he placed a hand on either of her shoulders.

"Emelie, honeybunch, darling, sweetheart. I give you girls because your far better at this then men. I would have killed myself by now. However, if you wish to be a collector I can make the arrangements." She shook her head at once and he smiled. "I didn't think so. Its not pretty work." She was looking up at him now, soft brown eyes filled with fire, hair tangled prettily about on her head. She suddenly stepped into him and wrapped her arms about him and her body shook as she began to cry.

"Oh Thomas. I can't stop thinking about my parents! My sisters! What will have happened to them." He held her to him. He had been wondering the same thing, keeping busy so as to not think about it. He was sure that his best-friend Patrick, if he was alive, would look after them. He sighed and felt a lump in his own throat, only duly aware that his adviser and bodyguards had drawn out of ear shot and the two of them were alone. "I don't know Emelie. I don't know. But we must keep a stiff upper lip. This is our home now, this is our family." Her sobs stopped and he could feel the moist tears had seeped through his shirt. She looked up at him, her chin barely at his breastbone. "I know... Its still hard... Hard not to have anyone to..." Her words trailed off as she stood on her tip toes and kissed him. He was surprised at first and then felt a rush of his own emotion as he cupped the back of her head and returned her kiss.

They stood like that for what seemed like eternity before a cough brought them both back to earth. Knight turned to see Cairns grinning at him. "Sorry Thomas, the sorting post is looking for her." Knight became aware of the people watching suddenly, some of them smiling, some in tears. None had dared to bother him. He smiled down at Emelie, her own smile warming his heart. "Go on love. They need you." She flushed red and gave him a quick kiss and hurried off into the excited crowd of women who had been watching from the sorting post. He could hear their congratulations being rained down on Emelie.

"Now that's a shit eating grin if I have ever seen one." Cairns spoke again as he gave his friend a punch in the shoulder. And Knight was grinning, a great broad grin that he couldn't have hidden if he wanted to, his words light hearted. "Mister Cairns, I love my life." The two men laughed.

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Re: Dies the Fire (Closed)

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Moniker on Sat Oct 17, 2009 3:46 pm

St. Mary’s Catholic Church
8AM, March 27th
Nine days after the Change


Patrick Reed stood behind a podium set up in the field in front of the church that had become their headquarters, raised up on two benches pushed together to be more visible. Before him was the entirety of the group of people that made up his ‘tribe’ in the gang-run anarchy that had swallowed his home town, with the exception of a few necessary sentries. Patrick couldn’t help but feel slightly responsible, having been one of the first to organize in such a way. He still felt it was necessary.

In front of the podium and to his right, Theos had an arm around his sister Sophia, who was sullen and on the verge of tears once more. Across from them, on Reed’s left was the freshly dug grave meant for Yanni Yiorgos, whose body was wrapped in clean white linen sheets directly in front of Patrick.

“Friends, we find ourselves in violent, horrible times,” began Patrick solemnly, forcing his voice to sound strong and carry to everyone. “We made the decision not to sit idly by and wait for the world to right itself, and as the days of hardship continue, I still believe we’ve made the right choice. This is uncharted territory now, for all of us and as we soldier on, remember what we all knew when we committed ourselves to this course: Sacrifices must be made. Sacrifices in comfort, sacrifices in convenience, and the physical sacrifices of good, honest hard work. Yanni knew this - Yanni, who made that ultimate sacrifice for his friends and family.”

It was now that Sophia was overcome with tears. Patrick tried not to falter.

“Yanni Alexander Yiorgos, whose memory will be honoured by great deeds and more importantly, with survival! For to fail in this would condemn him to be forgotten, to let him die in vain and that is unacceptable. So, with heavy hearts, we commit Yanni Yiorgos to the earth that he might lie with his ancestors, but we do so with a promise: To soldier on, to live, thrive and survive for those who can no longer do so.”

Patrick nodded to what basically amounted to pallbearers - six of his men who gingerly hoisted the deceased man with the help of three ropes, and lowered him gently into the waiting earth below. As the grave was steadily filled with dirt, the assemblage dispersed, back to their many varied duties. For his part, Reed went for a short walk around the church grounds and, when he had what seemed like a moment of privacy, promptly vomited on the side of the building. This was only the second funeral he’d ever been to, and he’d had to preside over it. The first was only a month ago - that of his late Grandfather. It was a lot to take in, but just the same he was embarrassed by losing his guts.

“You okay, Pat?” asked Marco, coming around the corner of the Church.

“I’m fine, bud,” replied Reed, though his voice was somewhat hoarse. “What’s up?”

“Um, I was wondering if, maybe, I could make a request?” Marco had been distant recently, and now his voice was timid and, if Reed didn’t know any better, almost frightened. The bigger man motioned for him to continue. “ Look, it’s not that I don’t want to do my part. I do. It’s just that… well, you know I’m not much of a fighter. I’m not scared to fight if I have to, but I’m not very good at it. After seeing what happened to Yanni, I’m… well, I was wondering if there was anything else I could do?”

Patrick smiled and, heading back towards the front yard of the church, put his arm around Marco’s shoulders and led him along. “Listen, mate. We’re going to be going on the offensive here, hardcore. Need to take care of the other gangs - got to be on top! We’ll be recruiting new people, I hope, and with that comes more supplies, not to mention the stuff we loot. There’s going to be a lot going in and out, and I don’t want it to get out of hand, so we need to know exactly what we’ve got. I want you to head up this operation. I need accurate records, I need to know what we have when we have it, how much we go through a day, and how long we can last. You have the authority to requisition help from anyone who isn’t otherwise occupied. Sound good?”

“Yeah!” said Marco jubilantly. “Thanks!”

“Start immediately. If you need notebooks or whatever, take a few boys and raid BVO. Oh! Before you go, grab Will, Russell and big Donnie, tell them to meet me across the street. Need to discuss breaking some heads.

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Re: Dies the Fire (Closed)

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Tempest on Mon Oct 19, 2009 11:27 pm

Tofino
0900 Hours, April 9th
20 days after the Change


Just when things seem to be going well, they often take a turn for the worse. Tofino had stabilized now with a population of 3,089 souls, all able bodied and in decent health. The collection of supplies was proceeding well and Knight was in the process of sorting out how to best house everyone when he received the worrisome news from the south. It came in the form of a scout, one of the few he had, riding a preciously scarce horse.

"Thomas! We have a problem!" The man was shouting as he spoke and Knight saw Tyler Cairns move to intercept him, ordering him to silence as worried faces turned their way. Cairns led the messenger over to him and he nodded to the messenger. "Report."

"The Haida have taken control of Port Albion to the south and they have begun forcing people out as well. The two refugee groups, ours and theirs, have met between us and are vastly superior to us in numbers. We have rumours from them that they may storm either Tofino or Port Albion for supplies." The man finished his report, looking more then a little scared. Knight wasted no time.

"Cairns. Round up the troops, quickly." The other man nodded and galloped away, sounding a thunder whistle that would bring the armed members of the community running. "You," He spoke now to the messenger. "Find Mister Roberts and Mister Ryan. Have them bring their work parties to the station." The messenger rode off with a "Yessir" and a spurt of gravel.

The station was simply an old gas station just a little ways out of town and it was here that Knight met with his the top three subordinates. Roberts ran the collection crews, Cairns the wielded the armoured fist of the operation and Ryan was in charge of the ships and their crews. Between them they had nearly 600 men who could wield a weapon, and most had. They were joined by Emelie who represented their stores, all had served on the ship together. The station also served as a temporary armoury, its large car wash had been converted to hold weapons racks for just such an emergency. "Weapons" was also a generous term. Hammers pick axes, sharpened stakes and others made up the majority of the weapons. The armour available was nothing more then sports gear, most of the men had nothing to show in the way of armour save for thick jackets. Knight stood with his advisers looking at the pathetic display. "We need to work on this..." He was muttering to himself but they all heard him. Emelie spoke up.

"Thomas. I have not given you the latest pages, but in that batch of SCA who came through, plus a few other randoms we have the ability to make leather armour, chainmail and even weapons. I was thinking we could give them the old customs building to work in." Knight nodded and she hurried off, as he yelled after her. "We will need supplies for this. Do what you can to make them up and send them after us." He could just barely hear he reply.

With a despairing sigh he shrugged. "Suit them up lads." The 600 men who made up the fighting force of Tofino came in five by five and selected two weapons, a close combat weapon and a longer weapon. Then they would file outside and shook out into ragged looking ranks. Knight, watching from atop his horse now waved Cairns over. "This needs to be fixed. Your regulars need to be trained properly. Make it happen." Cairns nodded and then added his own two cents.

"Aye sir. We also need to sort out some closer home political stuff. The folk I have talked too think you should have a proper title and maybe a house." He grinned at Knight's look. "Come on Tom. This isn't the modern world. If we are going to have armour and the like, we are going to need a King."

Knight scoffed at the idea, he had more pressing issues but the idea was lodged in the back of his head. Maybe later. He rode out in front of the assembled 600. He felt silly, giving a speech to so many men, many of whom were older then he, but he was their leader.

"Gentlemen. Shortly we are going to stop by the collection outpost and outfit as many of you as we can with digging tools. It seems we have a crisis in the making and if our small home is to survive we must act swiftly." He could see that the men were listening closely and it struck him that maybe, just maybe, he was more then an upstart leader. "To the south," he flourished his hand towards the distance. "The Haida have taken Port Albion and forced more refugee's out. They had mingled with those we have sent away and now they number more then enough to storm us if we do not act! We must stand! We must protect what we have!" He could hear a rumble of agreement and behind him he heard Cairns mutter, "Thought you looked like a silly William Wallace but I'll be fucked if the fellows arn't buying totally into this."

It was true, the assembled men were now avidly watching Knight and it occurred to him he wasn't leading troops into a battle of tanks and planes but rather a battle where men would die up close and personal. He felt a strange rush go through him and this time when he spoke his voice sounded even more confident and the faces below told him he was not missing his mark. "We go to defend our homes! Our land and our people! We defend Tofino!"

To his amazement the men thrust their weapons into the air and roared their support. He could feel the blood pounding in his veins and made a grand gesture towards the south. The men turned and began to trudge down the road, Cairns riding to his side. "Got a nice ring to it, Tofino!" He laughed as Knight slugged him. "No seriously, it was good. We are missing something though... A band. I might work on that." Knight looked at his friend as if he had been punched in the face.

"That's a fucking brilliant idea. Make it happen." Knight was enthusiastic about the idea. As a student of military history he knew the value of music to stir the blood of men and was lost in his own thoughts as Cairns gave him a very strange smile and bowed his head slightly. "As your majesty wishes."

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *


Knight whistled as he looked through a set of binoculars taken from the warship when they left. He had arrived after a six hour march along with his men and set up a temporary headquarters in the Tofino airport terminal. Here was the narrowest piece of land between Tofino and Port Albion. The mass of refugee's was much further south then he had thought and even the town of Esowista was empty. He had billeted his men in the abandoned buildings. He placed a garrison of 200 men, under the command of Cairns in Esowista and the remainder he deployed to the airport. Between the long runways and the highway, there was no real other way to get north without a fight. He had chosen his position well. Once in position he had his forces to fortify as best they could with wrecked cars and aircraft, pieces from the buildings, anything they could use to defend themselves.

It was early the next morning when at last he felt he had completed everything as best he could. He rode south once to check on Cairns but his friend needed no help, he had shared many of his military history classes with Knight. They waited.

The wait was not long. 10,000 or more people, hungry, desperate and dying did not take much motivation to try and better their lives. Many of them were older and would be of no use in any fight but there were more then enough bodies to do the job. When they finally moved it was in two different directions. One force, the larger, broke off and made for Port Albion whilst the other headed for Tofino.

It was plainly obvious that the second group had no idea of the terrain and they all funneled down the highway that would lead them directly to Esowista. Knight quickly re-deployed his men to the hedges along the east of the road. He was well into position before the mass of bodies appeared. They saw Cairn's defenses and gave a weak cheer and charged. They were armed even more poorly then Knight's troops but it wouldn't take much to kill a man with no armour.

The mob struck the barricade with a meaty thud and the screams began. Thought heavily out numbered the advantage of better food and rest was evident as the Tofino troops had no trouble in pushing their enemies back. The battle was only a few minutes old when Knight ordered the bulk of his 400 men to attack the right flank and they rushed from their cover with screams of "Tofino!" and "Knight!".

The refugee's had had enough. They broke and ran leaving behind nearly 100 bodies in their flight. Without pause they streamed south towards Port Albion and Knight wondered what sort of effect that might have on the outcome of the battle there. As he watched them flee he could see many of them sagging down and collapsing into the ditches. The attack had spent much of what little energy they had. Only the strong would survive this chaos. He turned back to his own forces at hand, raising an eyebrow at Cairns as his friend approached. "How many of our own?"

Cairns huge grin allayed his fears at once. "Not more then a half dozen injured. That was ridiculous. Poor buggers..." He too was staring down the road after the fleeing mass. It was hard not to feel horrible as you watched thousands of people who were going to die run from you. "For the best I suppose." He sounded like he was trying to convince himself more then anything and Knight could only nod.

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Re: Dies the Fire (Closed)

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Moniker on Tue Oct 20, 2009 2:15 pm

Intersection of Cougar and Marmot
Midday, April 9th
20 days after the Change


Rain did not fall often in this stretch of the Rockies, and when it did it was often hard but over fast. Every once in a while, however, when the clouds darkened it was for no short amount of time. Not a torrential storm by any definition, but enough to soak a man very quickly if they weren’t dressed in yellow rubber rain gear. Patrick Reed had that unasked for pleasure, the rain having gotten into every bit of him in short time. By now, as well as his stab-vest from his work as a doorman, he wore hockey shin pads over Carhartt overalls accompanied by elbow pads for roller skating. He’d tied a leather thong around the grip of his sword to help keep it in his grasp. In his left hand, Knight’s round shield, held fast in his grip by a cheap belt.

Opposite him was the leader of the violent gang centred around Whiskey Creek, a group of thugs who had largely partied the first week of the change and only recently begun to show organisation. They’d begun to show great promise, so in the last few days, Reed’s men had been running constant harassment. It had come to a head on this day of miserable weather, with a rather large street fight in the morning. As the two sides withdrew from each other, Patrick had ordered half of his men to make like they were running, taking their wounded with them. The two groups had spent some time glaring balefully at each other from only the distance of an intersection. When their rivals reserves did arrive, Reed’s revealed themselves, showing equal numbers, with about forty fighting men and women each.

Reed’s opposite wore what looked like a full set of hockey gear except for the pants, mostly black and with a matching shirt over top. He was big, well over six feet compared to Patrick’s modest 5’10” and had elicited reactions that made his identity obvious. Reed didn’t hesitate in challenging him, and it hadn’t taken much to incite a reaction. Calling him a coward, or more accurately a “pussy little bitch,” had gotten the brute into the street. Compared to Patrick’s sword and shield, his foeman’s weapons were far more crude. A hockey stick had been cut down to two feet had two bike chains bolted to the blade served as a flail in his right, while a short splitting axe was in his left. The man looked strong, and about as pleased as Patrick was for the weather, muttering curses as he moved towards the middle of the intersection.

Reed roared, getting his blood hot, as he too advanced. It wasn’t like the movies, when the two foes circled each other and traded witty jibes, instead they went right to it. The big hockey player lunged forward and to Patrick’s left, away from the sword, swinging his axe as he did. The blade bounced harmlessly off the wood of his shield, but was swiftly followed by a swing of the bike chain flail. It caught the edge of the shield and whipped around over it with frightening speed. Patrick could feel the wind on his beard, but it otherwise missed. The shorter man swung low with his sword at his enemies shins - something that had proven immensely effective against the untrained - but the gang leader pulled the limb back. Reed blocked another high assault from the flail, eliciting a wooden thwack before thrusting under the shield at the mans belly, only to have his blade knocked aside with the other mans splitting axe.

So it went for some time, with only Reed’s skill and better equipment holding him against the brutality and fitness of the larger man. It was the hardest fight he’d been on, and the first one-on-one since the Change - what they’d started calling the event that stopped the power three weeks ago. The first wound inflicted was against Patrick, for after his foeman hopped backwards to avoid a slash from the sword, he brought the flail across his body and swung at Reed down from his left shoulder instead of from the right. Reed raised his blade, catching the chain, but not early enough to prevent it scoring his forehead. The spectators from the other gang cheered, the taller man barked a laugh, and Reed, enraged by the pain of the wound and the blood on his face shouted in rage.

The rest happened quickly. With the chain of the flail still wrapped around the blade of his sword, Reed stepped forward, throwing the other man off balance while at the same time, he punched forward with the shield, hitting the man in the face with the steel boss. As his enemy stumbled back, Patrick freed his sword from the chain and, swinging low, made contact with the mans knee as he had tried before. This time, the sword impacted the plastic and foam of the hockey players kneepad, going on to cut into it, destroying the joint without severing the limb. Screaming in pain, the gang leader fell onto his back, dropping the flail. Bleeding profusely from his leg, he tried to pull himself backwards and away from Patrick, who by now had blood from his forehead, down over his face and into his beard, looking worse for the rain. Knowing victory was a forgone conclusion, he kicked the hammer out of the mans left hand, then kicked him again in the ribs to stop him from crawling away. Crouching down, Patrick released his sword and, holding the grip in two hands, began to hack at the fallen mans throat with the rim of his shield.

When his defeated foe finally stopped moving, Patrick picked up his sword and stood, facing the other gang. He could hear his own warriors cheering behind him and he raised his sword towards the dead mans gang.

“You belong to me, now!” he boomed, his voice gravely from the shouting. “Your leader was weak, but I am not. You’ll be fed and treated as equals, and soon we will own this town and be safe and fed. If you don’t like this arrangement, then lay down your weapons and leave. Immediately.”

There was muttering and a host of looks ranging from nervousness to anger, but in the end nobody left.

“Donovan, see to getting their supplies and non-combatants back to the church to be processed,” said Patrick as the huge man came up behind him. “Take most of the lads, we don’t want things to go sour right off the start. I’m going to go see to our wounded.”

“Right-o, mate. Have the medics look after your head, too. Nasty gash, don’t want to end up cactus,” added Donnie before whistling and motioning the other warriors over.

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Re: Dies the Fire (Closed)

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Tempest on Mon Oct 26, 2009 3:16 pm

Pacific Ocean, West Coast of Vancouver Island
Early Morning, April 13th
24 days after the Change


The Pacific Swift slipped slowly through two foot swells, her finely carved bow breaking the water like a knife through butter. Her white sails, normally so obvious against the sky were nearly hidden from the men on deck by the mist that swirled about them. Few sounds could be heard but Thomas, perched on the bow, could smell burning drifting to him in the fog. On the deck behind him the crew of the Pacific Swift went about their jobs with quiet skill, carefully stepping around the twenty armed men who sat or lay on the deck. These were the men who had showed what Cairn's referred too as the "killer instinct", men who had shown no qualms about killing other humans and doing it well. In total they numbered 103 able bodied men and Cairns had formed them into the "Town Watch". Essentially they were too replace police and enforce the Thomas's word on the community but Thomas had found another style of work for the group with him,

"I reckon we should be no more then two miles from Port Albion now Mr. Knight sir." The whispered voice that suddenly came from Knights side was that of an older man, probably the same age as his own father, a man who had actually sailed the oceans. Thomas had appointed him Navigator on this expedition and he had made no errors yet. Thomas nodded and thanked the man before waving Morin forward. The second man was nearly as big as he was and had served aboard the warship with him though lower ranked he was the kind of man Thomas favoured, clever, quick to learn, and needing minimal supervision. Cairn's had been left in command of Tofino while Knight was gone.

"Have your fellows man the boats, quietly now." Morin nodded and moved aft, rousing his men and ordering the four boats trailing behind the Swift to be pulled alongside the vessel on its port quarter. The soldiers who began to climb into the boats were much better armed then they had been only four days ago. They had worked with the SCA types in the community day and night for dour days to produce decent weapons. They all carried a fire hardened spear, some sort of axe, hammer or mace made from an axe handle with screws driven through. For armour they wore stab vests brought from the ship, or taken from the RCMP detachment. Sporting gear was a lacking in Tofino but heavy duty gear for logging and fishing had been easy enough to find and most of them wore thick leather pants and jackets reinforced with sheets of steel taken from roofs and lashed together with steel wire. It was a surprisingly stealthy style of armour. Helmets had been the hardest, steel toe boots had been found for everyone, but the helmets had been difficult. It had finally been settled on that baseball caps, the new ridiculous ones people had worn, would be used. They had been fitted with roof steel the same as the jackets and pants, one could wear them either forward or backwards and needed to wear a toque underneath or the steel wire would be directly against the skull. They would not stop a skull crushing blow but at least they would prevent the head from being completely un-protected.

Thomas was the last into the boats and they pushed off, leaving behind five of the armed men to protect the ship. The sailors had been training to fight but whether or not they would kill was a different story. "Gently now lads. We dont want to give away our position." Thomas whispered across to the other boat. Each one held eight men who pulled strongly on paddles as they moved through the fog towards the dark smear that marked land. As they moved closer they could hear the roar of the surf pounding against the rocks and Thomas pulled binoculars from a waterproof pouch at his side, just able to see through the fog. "Shit..." His muttered words brought inquiring looks from the others in his boat and he signaled for the second boat to come alongside. Morin raised an eyebrow at him as they did.

"Shoreline is nothing but barely submerged rock and cliff. No way we can hope to get ourselves ashore without serious problems and maybe loosing a boat." He swore again. "We are going to have to wait for better visibility and sail around the tip..." He trailed off as if to speak again but one of the men in his boat suddenly spoke up.

"Actually sir, if we move further south we could enter the next big bay down and land at Little Beach. Its much closer to the townsite, that's the only problem with it. Good pebble beach." He shrugged slightly and pointed south. "I had a cousin in Port Albion sir."

Thomas nodded and then glanced at Morin who grinned. "Don't see why not Thomas. The day is young."

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *


Two hours and much paddling later the two boats, shadowed from afar by the Swift, entered Ucluet Bay as the sun began to burn the mist away. The cover was still decent, the sun casting brilliant light on the water and making it difficult to see anything in the water. Slowly the two boats, hugging the northern edge of the bay as best they could, made their way towards Little Beach. So far they had seen no signs of life except for the pillars of smoke that rose from beyond the edge of the bay and the general direction of the Port Albion townsite.

As they touched the stone pebbles of Little Beach and began to drag the boats up on shore they got their first wind of the changes in the area. One of the men suddenly grasped Knight's arm and pointed up the beach at two men who had jumped from the brush and began to run inland. Knight gestured to three of his own men, the only three with ranged weapons, and they all swiftly put an arrow to pre-change compound bows. The first to loose his arrow missed by no more then several inches. The next two didn't miss, they hit the same man within a second of each other and he spun through the air to crash into the bushes. His companion halted and made as if to turn back to help him when the first archers second arrow caught him in the chest and sent him staggering to the ground.

"Go, go." Knight pushed four men forward and they ran towards the fallen bodies, Knight following only after detailing two others and one archer to remain with the boats. When he reached the dead men he nodded in appreciation of the shooting, and of the decision to recover the three arrows.

"Dont they look like they came out of a wild west movie..." The voice was one of the archers as he turned over a body, a Native American youth with war paint on his face and chest. "I wonder how many more there are."

Knight didn't care to find out with how small his force was and immediately led them to what passed for the high ground, the roof of the nearest house. No one was in the house and he scrambled to the roof, pulling out his binoculars again and scanning the town. He couldn't see much and cursed. He could make out that the majority of the buildings on the east side of the peninsula were still inhabited. He was still looking when one of his men hailed him from below. Moving carefully to the edge of the roof he glanced down to see two of his men holding a young woman between them, she was crying and looked terrified. He quickly clambered down the roof and dropped to the ground. The woman only cried harder as he approached and tried to crawl away but one of the men dragged her back by the collar of her shirt. Knight knelt in front of her. She was pretty enough and should some definite Native American blood, the soft oval eyes and tan coloured skin giving it away. Her hair was as raven black as her eyes and Thomas could tell she would have been a heart breaker before the change.

"Whats your name miss?" His gentle tone was evidently not what she had expected and her sobs slowed as she stared at him. "Mar... Mari... Marie sir." She stuttered her name out between whimpers and he nodded. "I need you too tell me about this town Marie. Where is everyone living, who is in charge and what happened with the swarm that attacked a few days ago." She nodded.

"The swarm never made it past the Pacific Coast Cottages. We had food stored there and a small force. They killed everyone there and they began to eat... They even began to eat..." Here her voice faltered and she glanced at him for reassurance. "They even began to eat each other!" Her words brought gasps from some of the armed men and they looked about as if fearing the cannibals would suddenly appear. The woman continued. "The town is in an uproar, the Chief has taken control along with the tribesmen from around here and they are organizing things. That is why so few people are over here now. He forced many of them to leave so the rest of us could eat."

Thomas looked at Morin who had been writing down everything she said. His attention snapped back to her at her next words. "Please dont hurt me. I only came here to find my brother and father. They were sent to watch Little Beach for people from the sea." Thomas forced a smile and stood, walking a short distance away with Morin.

"Whats on your mind Tom?" Morin asked carefully, he could see something was bothering his friend. "What should we do with her? Do we want the Chief to know we exist? Or do we want him to worry about the cannibals without knowing we are here?" Thomas was not sure for the first time since the strange events twenty four days ago. Morin it seemed was in no such predicament. He shrugged. "It seems fairly clear to me, we take her with us or we kill her. I don't think letting the Chief know we exist is a very good idea at all. In time he will find out but I seem to recall him being anti-white." Thomas sighed and nodded in agreement.

"Very well. Ask her is she wants to come with us, if she says no, kill her." Morin bobbed his head and turned away towards the kneeling girl. He knelt next to her and spoke quietly. She listened then nodded vigorously and Morin stood, offering her a hand. She took it and clutched tightly too him as they began to walk towards the boats. Thomas waved the remainder of his men to follow.

Three hours later, as the Swift set her course for Tofino, Thomas sat down to talk further with Marie as she sailed to a new home.

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