bad intel

It’s fiction time again, and this little piece was some background fluff for  a fantasy character in my friend’s Savage Elhal campaign. Deklan may be short in stature, but he makes up for it with courage and toughness.

For your reading pleasure, I give you “Bad Intel”:

The battle was a disaster. The field was littered with bodies, most of them human, and the Demons were overrunning their position. Something had gone horribly wrong with their intel. What was supposed to be a couple of squads had turned out to be an entire battalion, and now it didn’t look like any of the humans were going to make it out alive. The Brotherhood of Steel were attempting a fighting retreat, but with so many Demons it was very unlikely they’d make it back over the hill, let alone manage a complete escape.

Deklan was tired. Somehow he’d managed to avoid getting overrun so far, but it’s just not easy to kill Demons. The soldiers are relentless, fearless, and their armor is hard to breach. Glancing around he couldn’t see any of his fellow Brothers, and there had been a dozen in his squad, himself included. That nearly drained what little energy he had left. A few paces away he saw one of the bowmen frantically scrambling to back away from a Demon soldier. Summoning everything he had left inside, Deklan sprinted over and threw himself between the two combatants. He grunted hard as the Demon blade crashed against his shield, sending a sharp pain up his arm and into his shoulder. Another blow landed before he could regain his footing, this time driving him down to one knee. Several arrows bounced off the Demon’s armor, as the bowman barely had enough strength left to draw the string. Deklan looked up to see the Demon preparing an overhand chop, so he forced his shield up one more time and tried to backpedal. The heavy Ebon sword drove the shield down, but was deflected just enough to prevent the blade from splitting his head. Unfortunately the point of the blade dug into Deklan’s helmet, penetrating it like paper and scoring down across his eye. Pain lanced through his skull as he tried to roll away from the Demon, but he could no longer see the enemy through the injured eye. Frantically he swung his head around trying to locate the Demon, but it was too late. The black blade was coming towards him in a sideways arc, clearly intent on removing his head, and there was no time to avoid the inevitable. Deklan closed his one good eye and prepared to meet the All-Father.

A blast of force hit Deklan in the chest and threw him backward. Dazed and confused, he could only make out a lot of explosions and frantic activity. Suddenly a hand was on his shoulder, and he spun around only to fall on his face in the mud. “It’s ok, I’m here to help!” a muffled voice told him, and then he was consumed by blackness.

Hours later he was recovering in a tent, and word of their rescue was finally being relayed to those who hadn’t been privy to it first-hand. It seems another group had arrived on the scene with a Mage, and turned the tide. “I’m afraid you’ll never see out of that eye again,” the medic told him. With a firm, quiet voice, Deklan turned to the medic and said “As long as the other one is still good, I’ll fight on.”

Night’s black agents

This little piece was a teaser I wrote for my character in our Night’s Black Agents campaign (abbreviated NBA henceforth). NBA is a game about modern day field agents (think Jason Bourne) who discover that vampires really exist, and become embroiled in the conspiracy to keep them hidden. I decided to base my character on the Saint, who was played by Roger Moore in the TV series and Val Kilmer in the movie, leaning more toward Kilmer’s portrayal. Much like the Saint, my character was a linguist, a master of disguise, and a skilled hand-to-hand combatant. Instead of using the names of saints as his aliases though, he uses the names of guitar players.

So, if you’re still reading, here’s some flavor about an operative currently going under the name James Hendricks…

“Ha ha! You are like The Saint, no?” Yuri asked as I pulled off my wig and false nose. I sighed heavily before pulling my colored contact lenses and then rubbing my eyes with the palms of my hands. “Sure, Yuri, just like The Saint,” I replied. “Except I’m not as handsome as Val Kilmer, and the mark with the secret formula is never as beautiful as Elizabeth Shue.” I flopped down in my chair wearily, continuing the ersatz education of my big Russian friend. “I like to think I’m the best mimic there is, but it’s never like they show you in the movies. You wouldn’t believe some of the nasty people I’ve had to ingratiate myself with.” I could go on at length to Yuri about the arms dealer I impersonated for two weeks in order to close a deal after he was killed during a bad interrogation. Then there was the waste disposal tech I had to replace for an inspection of a sewage treatment plant – that smell still wakes me up sometimes. Or the East German former shot-putter I had to cozy up to for a schnitzel recipe (don’t ask). Perhaps the worst of all was the Christmas I impersonated my uncle Charlie as a mall Santa for two days while he slept off an apocalyptic hangover. Jingle bells still make me cringe. But I wasn’t about to tell Yuri any of those stories, especially now that I knew he’d been working both sides of this deal. It’s a shame – I liked working with Yuri. I gave the big Russian a smile as my brain began working out the logistics of how I’d be strangling the life out of him with a choke hold in a few minutes.

What doesn’t kill me…

Here’s another piece I wrote for Ken’ichi Omatsu, my character in one of the campaigns we played with the Corporation RPG. You know the old adage “What doesn’t kill me only makes me stronger”? Ken’ichi does…

The first few rounds blew out his shield, allowing another round to shatter his left femur and dropping him prone. On his way down, yet another round tore through his right bicep. His I.C.E. locked down the pain, reducing it to a suggestion of something off on the periphery, while the monthly Histonamide treatments stemmed the blood loss almost instantly. Agent Ken’ichi Omatsu of the Shi Yukiro Corporation barely noticed any of this. His more immediate concern was the ambush threatening to take the lives of his fellow agents.

They had been headed to a rendezvous with a contact, one who had information about a piece of Shi Yukiro tech being sold on the black market. Their destination was a warehouse just outside Chiba City. When they arrived, they were greeted by the corpse of their contact and a hail of gunfire.

As the initial surprise of the attack wore off, the rest of the team began checking in. Status reports and enemy locations began pouring in over his Smeaker. It sounded like everyone was accounted for. Wait. Not everyone. Dragon hadn’t responded. Division leader Hideki Ito, codenamed Dragon, had been less than 3 meters from Ken’ichi when the ambush struck. A quick look back in the direction he’d come from confirmed the worst. Ito had lost his shield just as quickly, and had taken 2 rounds to the head. Later they would discover that his backup had become corrupted, so there would be no return to duty for Dragon after decanting into a fresh body. Hideki Ito was gone forever. But Ken’ichi didn’t know that yet.

“This is Ghost. Dragon is down, I repeat Dragon is down” he called through the Smeaker. “Whirlwind, can you move around their flank? We need to split their attention and draw away some fire.” Whirlwind was agent Yoshinobu Sakai, short in stature but incredibly fast and deadly with his twin katanas. “Roger, Ghost. Whirlwind is on the move.” “Shadow, can-” Ken’ichi started, but was interrupted by Hiroshi Takahashi, the assassin who was truly one with the shadows he was named for. “I am nearly in position. Shadow out.” That left Chatter, so named because Aiko Takagi rarely said more than two words all day. She was also one of the few on the team who really enjoyed using firearms, especially machine pistols. “Chatter, can you cause some trouble?” In typical Chatter fashion, the reply was simply “Hei!”

Within seconds, the sounds inside the warehouse changed. Chatter was unleashing a steady barrage of automatic fire. There were screams and groans from the enemy, as Whirlwind and Shadow had gotten behind them and begun a deadly dance of blades. Ken’ichi seized Dragon’s body under the arms and dragged him clear of the building, then called for evac and a medic. By the time he had limped back inside, it was all over. Shadow and Chatter made it through without a scratch, but someone had gotten in a lucky shot and taken out Whirlwind. Unlike Dragon, he would return to fight another day thanks to his backup.

A short while later, Ken’ichi Omatsu lay on an exam table. The doctor probed around his ruined leg, frowning and murmuring. “This leg is almost a total loss. Our best bet is to just remove it and fit you for a cyberlimb.” Ken’ichi smirked slightly, as he looked up at the doctor. “Take them both…”

Digging out some old fiction

Once again, I’ve let this humble blog of mine grow silent for far too long. In an effort to help rectify that, I’ve been digging through my archives looking for fiction that I’ve written for my characters in the various RPG’s I’ve played over the years. As I find these older pieces, I’m going to toss them up here to share with everyone. So keep your eyes peeled for new stuff!

Experiment Time

I thought it was about time I looked into Jetpack, which allows a WordPress blog to cross-post to social media. So if this works, it will not only be my first blog post in nearly a year, but it will also show up on Google +… we shall see.