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Atomic Sunrise 10: Exploration Eastward:Sand, Sea, & Stars-Rated R

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#281 Ishmael Autolycus

Ishmael Autolycus

    A wanderer, and a picker-up of unregarded trifles.

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Posted 21 March 2016 - 09:13 PM

"Evening, Constable," Ishmael greeted the approaching white-helmeted figure.

"Evening, sir," the constable replied.

"Quiet night?"

"One can only hope."

Ishmael smiled slightly. "True. Well, here's hoping. And a good evening to you."

"Indeed, sir, and a good evening to you as well."

The two men nodded politely to each other and parted, the constable continuing on his beat while Ishmael continued on his way as well. He wondered briefly if he should have mentioned the existence of the Bermudan Constabulary to the rest of the group, since peace officers seemed to be in extremely short supply back on the mainland. Not to say there wasn't crime, and criminals, on Bermuda- there were- but the constables with their distinctive white helmets and side-stick truncheons still managed to keep order on the island, even in the face of rowdy crews with more liquor than sense in their veins.

Shrugging to himself, Ishmael decided there was no point in worrying. Their people were smart and wary enough in a strange place not to get themselves into too much trouble. And he had plenty he needed to do, both on land and back at the ship, if they were going to leave on the noon tide.

#282 RJDiogenes


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Posted 22 March 2016 - 06:54 PM

The Captain grabbed Alexander by the back of his dirty robe and tossed him to the floor in a heap. He went down in a jumble of limbs, falling right into Myka.  "Pardon me," he said.

"Get the map...on the table...hand drawn...Varuna," Myka hissed into Alexander's ear before he was hauled back to his feet.

Seth dragged the mutant over to his desk where he swept a few things to the side and lay out a faded but multi-colored map. "This place...is it real?" he demanded, jabbing a large, dirty finger onto the old paper. "I was told it was a place I could invade, take over. I killed to get this map," he growled, glaring at the mutant. "There is already a castle...there in the middle. And accessible by the sea...here?" Seth nearly pounded on the map at the bottom where a small boat was pictured in the water. "There are rivers and big mountains...that one is covered in snow and the other is dirt...I want that land!" he bellowed. "Where is it? Have you seen it before? What does this mean?"

The pirate jabbed his finger at the top this time where the words were only half visible...'neyland'. "What is Neyland?"

"Neyland," Alexander repeated, stroking his chin with his six-fingered hand. "The disambiguation of that name could take some time. There are any number of pre-war references that I can think of off the top of my head. An actress, a general, a foreign city, a character in Sax Rohmer fiction."  His eyes drifted to the pile of things that the captain had swept aside as he spoke. "Excuse me a moment."  He began to tidy up the desktop. "A mess on the desk is just so distracting.  I can't think straight if everything isn't organized."  He set the sextant, compass, and telescope neatly side by side, then folded the letter from Maybelle carefully and used it as a bookmark in the captain's logbook. "There, much better."

"Criminey," growled the captain, rolling his eyes.

Alexander then picked up the faded, but colorful, map and held it up to the light, peering at it closely. "But I don't think we need to worry about that," he said.  "The "n" in "neyland" is not capitalized and there appears to be a dried stain of syrup or mustard or some other gray condiment on the paper which is obviously covering the first part of the word.  Congratulations, captain, you have discovered a map to the fabled magic kingdom of Disneyland.  If you plan to invade there, I hope your insurance is paid up."

"What's 'insurance?'" asked the captain.  "And what's the big deal about this place?  There ain't no such thing as magic."

"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic," said Alexander. "And Disneyland was the epitome of technological advancement before the war.  I've read books. I've seen pictures.  I've even watched videos. The place was populated with swarms of intelligent mutated rats and dogs and waterfowl, and even dragons. They had a spaceship that launched from a mountain. They had some sort of inexplicable way of traveling to multiple lands that may have existed on other continents or in other dimensions-- I'm not sure which. They had even found a way to genetically reconstruct dinosaurs. On top of all this, it was more densely packed with ordinary humans than any other city on Earth. And why did all these people migrate there, despite the mutants and dinosaurs?  Because it was known as the happiest place in the world. It was ruled by an immortal man named Uncle Walt, who ruled from a cryogenic vault beneath the city, where he was kept alive in an icy hibernaculum.  All who came to his kingdom were intensely loyal to him."

"Well, crap on a biscuit," said Seth bitterly. "I don't have the manpower to deal with mutant swarms and dinosaurs and loyal followers.  But who's to say that Neyland, or DisNeyland or whatever the hell it is, didn't collapse just like the rest of the world?"

Alexander shrugged.  "There's an old saying that was widely used by ancient philosophers before the war," he said.  "'Better safe than sorry.;"

The captain nodded fiercely. "True, true! Wise words! I'll have to think this over." He grabbed Alexander by the back of his robe yet again and dragged him out from behind the desk.  "You have given me good information, Alexandria, so you get to live another day."

"'Alexander,'" said Alexander.

"Kralen! Kralen, get in here!" shouted the captain. "Take this bilge rat to see the doc before his foot falls off!"  As Alexander was dragged across the cabin, he winked silently at Myka.

#283 Nikki Peppermint

Nikki Peppermint

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Posted 27 March 2016 - 07:46 PM

Sophie had sidestepped the tall, bald man in the dirty clothes and avoided having him touch her hair. She grinned when Isabella suggested they kick some ass. That's what she'd been hoping her friend would say. Despite the brass knuckles and spiked glove, Sophie was more than ready to do battle for her and Isabella's right to walk the island without being accosted by scum.

And really, who used the word wenches anyway?

"I think it's you two creeps who're gonna be laying with the rats," Sophie snarled as she slid out her knife and crouched slightly.

"Hello there!" came a voice behind them. "Is everything alright here?"

Sophie gasped as she and Isabella whirled around, hiding their weapons behind their backs. Eyes wide they stared at the white-helmeted man looking curiously at them.

"I"m sorry...we're those two harassing you ladies?" he asked with a sudden frown. "We've had trouble with them recently...," he began.

Sophie heard the pounding of footsteps behind them. She and Isabella glanced around to find their "attackers" making a hasty getaway down the alley into the shadows. "COWARDS!" she shouted in annoyance.

"...but don't worry, we'll pick them up tonight and lock them away until they sober up," the white-helmeted man continued. "I'm one of the constables...are you two ladies okay then?"

Finally Sophie realized they weren't going to get their fight after all. "WHAT? No!" she exclaimed.

The constable look alarmed. "You're not okay?" he asked in concern. "Did they hurt you?"

Isabella shook her head and grabbed Sophie's arm. "No...she meant yes, we're fine. No, they didn't hurt us...we were...they...I mean...," she paused and began to drag Sophie away. "Thank you, Sir! Putting them in jail would be a great idea!"

The two women hurried past the confused looking constable, slipping around the corner and losing themselves in the evening busyness of the dock-side town.

"Well, that was no fun!"  Sophie exclaimed. "We so could have taken them...totally kicked their asses!"

"Damn right," Isabella agreed.

"Now I have all this energy running through me. Shopping just isn't going to do it for me right now," Sophie said, feeling herself buzzing with adrenaline.

"Rum?" Isabella suggested with a grin. She pointed to what seemed to be a drinking establishment with live music.

"Darts?" Sophie added, thinking that throwing sharp pointy things might help.

"And pool, definitely pool," Isabella said.

The two women headed into the bar with a view of the night time ocean and a warm breeze coming in through the open windows and doors.

"A bucking bronco would be fun, too!" Sophie's voice trailed off as the music swept over them and drowned her out.

#284 Nikki Peppermint

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Posted 27 March 2016 - 08:32 PM

Myka craned her neck, watching Alexander fuss around the Captain's desk as he talked some nonsense or other about whatever other map the pirate was showing him. But Myka only cared about the hand-drawn one of Varuna. She thought she saw Alexander slip something up his sleeve but honestly wasn't certain...it might have just been wishful thinking. She knew they were due to dock sometime tomorrow at whatever or wherever this Varuna was located; and she'd seen the map on the desk. Having it might help her and her friends, if they could escape.

"Kralen! Kralen, get in here!" shouted the captain. "Take this bilge rat to see the doc before his foot falls off!"  As Alexander was dragged across the cabin, he winked silently at Myka.

Myka risked the tiniest of smiles at Alexander before the large-headed Librarian was led roughly away. She took the wink as success at obtaining the map.

Once the cabin door closed, the Captain turned slowly to glare at her.

Myka lowered her eyes, not even caring if the bastard hit her again or...well, it wouldn't matter after tomorrow. They were going to escape and somehow she was going to kill this pirate Captain...regardless of his power or size. Myka felt herself hauled to her feet by the back of her neck. Her head was tipped painfully back while the Captain kissed her. Forcing herself not to gag...again...nor bite off his damn tongue...again..., the lavender-gray skinned girl prepared to let her mind take her any place else but here.

But suddenly she was released and her foot unlocked from the chain. Pushed and shoved out onto the deck, she was handed over to another of the pirates. Myka gulped a few breaths of the fresh, night sea air.

"I'm done with you. You're going back to your friends now," the Captain growled, his fetid breath in her face wanting to make Myka vomit. "Tomorrow you'll be slaves, and I'll be that much richer. Any of you try anything stupid...like escaping...and you will wish that death was what I had in mind for all of you."

Myka nearly stumbled over her bare feet as the strange pirate hauled her back toward the bowels of the ship.

* * * * *

Much to Cassie's utter surprise and relief, Hawk threw down the axe in disgust after Doc Finn spoke to him. He did spit at her, which was disgusting, but it was better than losing her arm and bleeding to death. He stalked out with Demon in tow.

Finn casually unstrapped a shocked Cassie but at knife point. He stepped back, ordering her to slide off the table with her back facing him. She felt the knife press against her spine.

“I need you to get back into your cage,” he said calmly. “If you resist, I will stab you in your spine. I hope you believe me because I really don't want to do that."

Cassie believed him. And frankly, besides being exhausted and hungry, she was still in shock at what almost happened. That was damn reason she kept her arm hidden.

“Is he really going to keep me?” she asked quietly as she walked, remembering what Finn had said to Hawk about the Captain wanting her for himself. She'd rather die that have that be her fate. She'd force the doctor to kill her if she had to.

“Not yet,” Finn said shaking his head. “I was lying to save your life. But if you don't fetch a good trade on Varuna, then probably yes. He'll want to get some use out of you.”

Just then Cassie spotted Alexander's empty cage. She whirled around angrily only to be confronted by the pirate doctor's knife in her face. But Cassie didn't care.

Where is he?” she shouted. “Where's Alexander? If you all hurt him, I swear...”

“Calm down. Don't do something you'll regret...and that you'll make me regret,” Finn warned her. “Captain just wanted to talk to him...he doesn't intend to hurt your six-fingered friend.” He waved his knife in Cassie's face. “Keep movin' to your cage.”

Shaking with contained rage, Cassie did as she was told until she heard the cage's lock click shut. She turned back around to face the ship's surgeon.

“He did threaten me, though,” Finn said with a sudden laugh, his bushy beard and mustache moving with the sound. “Said if I helped you, he'd let me live when this was all over.”

Cassie narrowed her eyes. Alexander threatened a pirate? She found she sort of appreciated his bravery, although the Librarian could have easily gotten himself killed.

“Is that why you helped me?” she asked.

Finn laughed again. “Uh, no. Your...friend...doesn't particularly scare me. I was already going to help you. Hawk is a sadistic bastard, and I won't be part of his tortures. I try to help those as doesn't deserve to be hurt. I'm sorry you all were in the wrong place at the wrong time on that beach,” he added. “None of you deserve this.”

Cassie eyed the doctor for a moment, thinking. “Sorry enough to let us out of here and help us escape?” she asked cautiously.

Finn laughed sadly. “Not that sorry, no,” he said. “I don't aim to be next in line to be whipped or killed by the Captain. You'll have to take your chances tomorrow on the ship-city.”

Finn turned to leave.

"Wait!" Cassie said, gripping the bars of the cage. "What about...Myka? The other girl, with the horns."

Finn was silent for a moment. He shook his head slightly. "Look...she'll be back before tomorrow...probably. Capt'n Seth, well, unfortunately for her...your friend...he...well, don't expect her to be the same when she comes back. I'm sorry...her I couldn't help."

With that the pirate surgeon walked out of the hold.

Devastated at what the doctor had implied, Cassie stared after him. She shook the bars of her cage and swore loudly. In his own cage, Ryland closed his eyes and laid his head on his bent knees. So far the pirates had left him alone but he still felt the pain of the others he was with.

#285 RJDiogenes


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Posted 03 April 2016 - 05:57 PM

Barely able to see over the top of the bulging basket of medical potions and supplies in her arms, Somphit trudged back to the ship. She hoped all the other pedestrians would know enough to stay out of her way-- a collision would be disastrous.  Right in front of her eyes, a jar of translucent golden pills jiggled among the other items. It was, Aloysius had said, made from the spinal cartilage of a local species of deep-sea fish, and it was guaranteed to wipe out any trace of anxiety for 24 hours. She hoped she wouldn't need it, but, since they would soon be sailing into pirate hell, she had a feeling she would.

She had also decided to go with the homemade aphrodisiac.  You never knew when something like that would come in handy.


Sitting on a barrel of something that smelled pickled, Alexander waited to be seen by the doctor.  He remembered to groan periodically and frown and rub his foot, which really didn't hurt much at all-- but if any of these pirates got the idea he was faking, he'd be thrown back in his cage.  At least he knew that Cassie was safe for the moment.  Judging by the look in the doctor's eyes, he had taken Alexander's implied threat very seriously indeed.

#286 Nikki Peppermint

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Posted 07 April 2016 - 06:06 AM

On hold for now...stay tuned for further developments!!!

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