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  • This is great stuff, Skilord!
    Who is Barinthus?

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    • Chapter 21: The Common Fight

      The gun felt awkward in his hands. His stomach clenched and hurled as his breaths grew ever heavier in his lungs, his eyes blurred from time to time as he walked the streets.

      The National Park of London was a mass of rolling hills and trees planted in the heart of London, it had been the scene of protests for decades, from the petty fears of the unthreatened to tonight’s stand of torchlight made by the dozens of marchers who walked with frightened eyes through the park.

      He looked over to Chris, whose eyes darted from this to that like a frightened rabbit, looking for a place to hide from the foxes.

      His ears started to ring, sweat greased his palms.

      “Citizens!”

      The British troops were there, across the park, the torchlight had finally become undeniable to even the most hopeful of soldiers who sent his prayers that there would be no questions, no affronts to the authority that they were there to protect.

      “Citizens!”

      The word was short, harsh falling like a rain of hammers on the crowd.

      “Citizens!”

      “We are citizens,” the leader was standing at the head of the army.

      “Why are you breaking curfew?” The words were loud, spoken with the unquestionable authority of a drill sergeant. Jack wanted to run.

      “We are Britons, we are free.”

      “Our nation is in a state of emergency, we must ask you to return to your homes.”

      “What’s the emergency?”

      “The Germans have planted agents throughout the nation.”

      “We aren’t German Agents.”

      “How do I know that?”

      “How do you know we are?”

      “I don’t.”

      “Then why is there a curfew?”

      The loud man of authority was silent for a moment.

      “We want our freedom back,” The BIA leader spoke into the quiet darkness, lit only by the flickering torchlight in the massive park.

      “Just go home.”

      “No.”

      The silence returned to the park as the torchlight flickered at the edge of the soldier’s camp.

      “This could become something that we will both regret.”

      “How so? Is martyrdom regretful?”

      “Perhaps you should ask your army.”

      The BIA leader turned to the huddled mass of frightened men who stood behind him. Sons and Husbands, Young and Old eyes peered, frightened back, filled with the endless terror that the soldier’s rifles inspired.

      The silence was deafening, it tore at the eyes and drew thick tears from the frightened.

      “Live Free or Die,” Jack shouted into the darkness.

      The silence surrounded him, Jack was silent, hoping that none would notice.

      “Live Free or Die!” Another shout.

      “Live Free or Die!” Another.

      It became a chant, a chorus sang by a white faced choir as they held their meager torches in the all encompassing darkness.

      The commander turned to his troops.

      “Ready!”

      The soldiers could not believe their ears, their rifles hung slack at their sides, quivering hands brought them up.

      “Aim!”

      The rifles were aimed into the torchlight.

      There were disconnected thuds throughout the soldiers mass as frightened hands could cling no longer to the rifles.

      “Deserters will be shot!”

      More rifles fell, impotent, to the grassy dirt.

      A lighter was lifted in the midst of the army.

      “Live Free or Die!”

      “Deserters will be shot!”

      The frightened crowd lifted their voices, “Live Free or Die!”

      “Fire!”

      The handful of men so obedient that their hands clung yet to rifles fired.

      -

      Johan von Bismarck stood at the front of his army.

      “Meine Guten Freunde, there is a battle that we all share; there is a dream that is common in the human heart. There is a fight that transcends the petty borders of nations, and this is the fight I ask you to fight.

      “I will not pretend that there is no advantage to our own army if we do this, the British are unsuspecting of any such thing and were we to defeat them at any given city our independence would be all but won. But this is not why we fight.

      “We fight for the sake of our brothers in Britain who yearn for freedom, we fight that common battle.

      “But it is not a battle that I will force upon you, I am asking now for volunteers to join me in this fight as we prepare the march to Oxford, I will force no man to join me, but if you find in your hearts any measure of compassion for our brothers in Britain and you would join me, then please do not let meager fear hold you in check.”

      Johan let that short speech sink into the crowd.

      “Deutsche Mitbürger, I bid you all to make this choice.”

      He turned from the podium with that, and a chorus of shouts let him know without even looking into his kingdom that his men would follow where he led.

      “What angel spoke to you last night?”

      Johan grinned at Jacob, “One with a hammer, if this hangover’s any judge.”

      “I will, of course, be with you, you know.”

      “Ahh, Jacob. Timothy is coming with me, he’s getting his armor together today for the attack, I need a man to keep my kingdom as I battle.”

      Jacob’s eyes were cut, and peered with pain at Johan.

      “You are a faithful man, Jacob, you alone do I trust with my kingdom.”

      Jacob smiled weakly, “I know.”

      -

      The tanks were of assorted design, molded together from remains or openly stolen from British armories the ancient German flag was painted across each of their sides.

      It was an army, there was a mass of men who walked with thundering stride among the hodgepodge tanks, the land was barren and the hard dirt let no grass shine through, there had been hardly any grass in Germany for centuries.

      The tanks thundered across the hard desert of Germany, in the distance the broken ruins of the Volkgeffanis stared at the army as it marched into Britain.

      -

      “There are riots in Oxford, sir.”

      Lord Protector Rhodes looked out of the corner of his eyes at the messenger, “I know.”

      The National Park of London was below him, the bodies from last night remained there, glassy eyes staring into the world, the soldiers had moved their camp, far fewer in number than on that night.

      “Why do they not see that I am trying to protect them?”

      The messenger was still at the door, “I don’t know, sir.”

      There was a deathly silence as the Lord Protector stared down into the park.

      “Tell sanitation to leave the bodies in the park.”

      “Sir?”

      “I want the people to know the filth that this revolution is bringing to our nation.”

      “Sir?”

      “You heard me, I want the bodies left there.”

      “What about the families.”

      “I want the bodies guarded.”

      “Sir?”

      “I want guards posted so that the bodies stay there.”

      “Sir?”

      “You head me.”

      The messenger left in silence, wondering as each step brought him closer to the sanitation department whether or not he would deliver his message.

      -

      The guard stared over the bodies, his rifle in his hands, he had finally grown used to the smell, and every time he realized this another wave of terror struck against his heart.

      There were people crying on the other side of the bodies, widows and children, mothers and fathers as they looked into the small huddle of bodies.

      Nine bodies, the guard had counted them again and again.

      There were more than nine groups of mourners, far more.

      “Sir, let me bury my son?” The woman was aged, hunched over and wrinkled.

      She had asked the question forty nine times in the last hour.

      “No, mam,” he glanced up at the imposing windows of the Royal residence.

      “Why?” the tears spilled bountifully from her eyes, she moaned and screamed, “Why?”

      The Lord Protector’s orders, mam.

      The words didn’t come.

      The guard was human.

      She lay there at his feet, a hunched and crooked mother whose son lay dead.

      The guard closed his eyes.

      And he kneeled down to the woman.

      “Show me your son, mam.”

      Her tears came even as she pointed weakly to one of the bodies.

      “Give me a shovel!” He demanded of the crowd.

      A shovel was passed forward quickly, it shined with the virtue of a recent purchase.

      The shovel drove defiantly into the dirt, and the guard dug alone.

      The crowd stared as he forced the dirt aside in the middle of the park.

      Another shovel appeared in the hole, joining the guard’s.

      Another joined the two.

      A hole was dug in the face of the mighty park and the guard marched to the body that the woman had pointed to.

      He took the shoulders gently and pulled them up, another man took the body, and another.

      The birds who had grouped on the pile of corpses fluttered away, frightened as the pallbearers joined their ranks to carry the coffin less body.

      The body was placed into the hole with every gentle touch, where the one man would stay six rose from the grave and the shovels soon took to hands.

      The guard turned to the crowd, teary eyes stared back with every hope.

      He nodded to them in the silent noon of the park, knowing that he was watched, knowing that there would be men in the park at any moment.

      The others took the bodies and, sensing the incoming army marched away, where there could be proper funerals.

      The old lady remained at mound of dirt where her son now rested, weeping.

      The guard looked, to see the others come.

      He kneeled before the grave and whispered to the body now hidden.

      “Liberty or Death.”
      Last edited by SKILORD; September 27, 2004, 11:43.
      Read Blessed be the Peacemakers | Read Political Freedom | Read Pax Germania: A Story of Redemption | Read Unrelated Matters | Read Stains of Blood and Ash | Read Ripper: A Glimpse into the Life of Gen. Jack Sterling | Read Deutschland Erwachte! | Read The Best Friend | Read A Mothers Day Poem | Read Deliver us From Evil | Read The Promised Land

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      • Wow!!! Incredible!!! so deep so heartfelt

        Truly an epic please dont stop
        A proud member of the "Apolyton Story Writers Guild".There are many great stories at the Civ 3 stories forum, do yourself a favour and visit the forum. Lose yourself in one of many epic tales and be inspired to write yourself, as I was.

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        • Yeah, that chapter felt right.

          glad you likd it,
          Read Blessed be the Peacemakers | Read Political Freedom | Read Pax Germania: A Story of Redemption | Read Unrelated Matters | Read Stains of Blood and Ash | Read Ripper: A Glimpse into the Life of Gen. Jack Sterling | Read Deutschland Erwachte! | Read The Best Friend | Read A Mothers Day Poem | Read Deliver us From Evil | Read The Promised Land

          Comment


          • Excellent work, Skilord!

            Johan let that short speech sink into the crowd.

            “Meine Gefährtedeutschen, I bid you all to make this choice.”
            You mean "My fellow Germans", right? Well, better change that to "Deutsche Mitbürger", or just simply "Werte Mitbürger".
            Heinrich, King of Germany, Duke of Saxony in Cyclotron's amazing Holy Roman Empire NES
            Let me eat your yummy brain! :D
            "be like Micha!" - Cyclotron

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            • Ahhh I try to bring back the German and I get slammed.



              I'll fix it. (what exactly does that literally mean?)
              Read Blessed be the Peacemakers | Read Political Freedom | Read Pax Germania: A Story of Redemption | Read Unrelated Matters | Read Stains of Blood and Ash | Read Ripper: A Glimpse into the Life of Gen. Jack Sterling | Read Deutschland Erwachte! | Read The Best Friend | Read A Mothers Day Poem | Read Deliver us From Evil | Read The Promised Land

              Comment


              • Originally posted by SKILORD
                Ahhh I try to bring back the German and I get slammed.

                I do like it very much!!! It gave me a good laugh Keep it on, please!
                I'll fix it. (what exactly does that literally mean?)
                Well, your "Gefährtedeutschen" is just wrong because you cannot mix those two words (my fellows-Germans or something like that...)
                "Meine Deutschen Mitbürger" translates to "my German (fellow) citizens", and without the "Deutschen" it´s simply "Fellow citizens"
                Heinrich, King of Germany, Duke of Saxony in Cyclotron's amazing Holy Roman Empire NES
                Let me eat your yummy brain! :D
                "be like Micha!" - Cyclotron

                Comment


                • You'd think that the online translators would know that...
                  Read Blessed be the Peacemakers | Read Political Freedom | Read Pax Germania: A Story of Redemption | Read Unrelated Matters | Read Stains of Blood and Ash | Read Ripper: A Glimpse into the Life of Gen. Jack Sterling | Read Deutschland Erwachte! | Read The Best Friend | Read A Mothers Day Poem | Read Deliver us From Evil | Read The Promised Land

                  Comment


                  • I only just tuned into this story yesterday and I am riveted! Hopefully there is still more to come. If not, it stands as an impressive work.

                    I forgive any grammar errors or misuse of words because the tale is so powerful. Writers usually take a few hundred pages to develop so much plot. The movement through this story has been incredible.

                    A gold star for this one.


                    Carlos

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                    • There should be a chapter coming soon.
                      Read Blessed be the Peacemakers | Read Political Freedom | Read Pax Germania: A Story of Redemption | Read Unrelated Matters | Read Stains of Blood and Ash | Read Ripper: A Glimpse into the Life of Gen. Jack Sterling | Read Deutschland Erwachte! | Read The Best Friend | Read A Mothers Day Poem | Read Deliver us From Evil | Read The Promised Land

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                      • Chapter 22: The Victors of this Age

                        ((The battle scene is not good enough for me, I might redo it))

                        The stories were told that the countryside hid an army, men at arms who came not to conquer, but to free, to break shackles, not to enslave, the stories burned through the ears of the long parched Englishmen. The hope was enough to feed a million souls who lived without freedom; the hope was enough to nearly break the shackles itself.

                        The stories were told the most in Oxford, in the few pubs that stayed alive as the Lord Protector stamped the others out, as being havens of rebellion. The eyes would dart to the door with every creak, hoping against hope as the rebellious stories were traded within the darkened enclave.

                        The hope flitted like a bird, sharing its luminescent glory with all as it soared to ever greater height. The children would smile to see it in the eyes of their parents, the eyes could only be lifted from their desolate investigation of the dirt when it was in flight, when the whispers came.

                        And as the walls to Oxford were closed the stories were told even more, they gained speed and intensity, pouring from every lip, the Germans were coming.

                        It was not a comment of ethnical significance, the Germans were coming, there are dreams without respect of the artificial borders that we impose upon ourselves, and such a dream is freedom.

                        Guns slipped from every secret crevice into dirty, calloused hands with cracked fingernails, hope flew high in Oxford as the Germans approached.

                        -

                        The binoculars dropped from Johan’s eyes, “There are sentries, the British know we’re here.”

                        Rommel nodded, “Had to happen sooner or later.”

                        “It’s a walled city.”

                        “We’ve never doubted.”

                        They stood on a hill, staring silently into Oxford, the grass had gone brown in the harsh rays of the sun.

                        “It won’t be an easy battle.”

                        “Was Berlin?”

                        Bismarck looked back to the city, “will we have to occupy it?”

                        “No, I promise you that this will spark a fire and bring Britain aflame.”

                        “A bold promise.”

                        “After we win here we will only have to go to the countryside and shoot at the British if they try to retake it from the Independent Army.”

                        “We plan to win?”

                        Timothy glanced at Johan, “I was once a major in the British Army, my father was a lieutenant as was his father before him. No man who has bourn the name Rommel has ever lead troops into battle to be beaten back. I have yet to loose a battle, I do not intend to make my grave here and I do not intend to shame my family’s name.”

                        “We plan to win.”

                        “Indeed.”

                        -

                        Chris limped up to the bar and lifted his hand, summoning a drink from the bartender.

                        The bartender smiled to him as he passed the drink across the bar, Chris was one of two who sat at the bar, the other man lay, nearly sprawled across the bar, on the other side, Chris lifted his glass in salute to the other man before downing it.

                        The bartender smiled more genuinely, chuckling softly as he poured Chris another.

                        “What happened to your leg?”

                        Chris glared up, “I’d rather not talk about it.”

                        “Are you sure?”

                        “Positive,” Chris tilted his head back and swallowed the drink.

                        The bartender smiled, “You realize that a few more of those will have the story out?”

                        “I don’t give a damn,” he slid his glass back to the bartender.

                        “If you don’t give a damn then why not answer my question?”

                        Chris was quiet, sipping slowly now on the new drink, “I suppose I could tell you.”

                        “Magnificent.”

                        “You remember the riots the other night?”

                        “You don’t mean to tell me…”

                        “I lost a friend out there, he had wanted to go and fight for freedom. What’s he got now?”

                        The bartender smiled, “He isn’t here with us, checking the door every minute to see if a bobby is going to come in here and demand that we close down, he doesn’t have to obey curfew anymore. Afterlife or no, the dead are the only victors in this day and age.”

                        Chris frowned, “So you say.”

                        The bartender nodded, “So I do.”

                        “And my wife and kids? I can’t help them much like this, can I?” he pointed fiercely to the limp leg that hung from his hip, “I’m less good dead.”

                        The bartender frowned, glancing painfully at his nearly empty tip jar, only a few scattered bills lay there. The frown deepened as duty commanded.

                        The bartender spilled the tip jar, pushing its contents to the wounded man, “I know that we didn’t win that battle out there where you fought, I know that it was more a series of executions than a battle. But I do know that it took more courage than I have to stand there as they wave guns to you, to shout defiance even as the bullets scream, thank you.”

                        The bar was silent for a moment save for the moaning of the fellow sprawled across it.

                        “I can’t take this.”

                        “From what I’ve heard you can’t afford not to.”

                        They stared at each other for a moment and the bartender took the money in hand and pressed it firmly into the wounded man’s hand, “Thank you. The debt I owe you for taking that bullet far exceeds any tip jar.”

                        The bar was silent as the other man began to slide down into a heap.

                        -

                        The tank opened fire on the walls, its cannon roaring defiantly as the wall exploded, gunshot was fired against the men who stood atop the wall, and they fell as the bullets slapped against them.

                        The cannons roared again and the wall shuddered as pieces were exploded away.

                        “Forward!”

                        The Germans poured out and ran across the field, the tanks rolling imposingly behind them, the battle crept towards Oxford.

                        British troops appeared in the huge cracks in the wall, opening fire on the virtually unprotected German line, the smarter threw themselves under the bullets or behind the tanks, even as the first of the antitank rockets slammed home. Explosions and gunfire rocked the small field outside of Oxford as the Germans tried to creep ever slowly forward.

                        British bullets slammed into unprotected flesh, digging deep and tearing themselves out, leaving every reminder of their presence.

                        Then the gunfire slowed, and dripped to a stop. The sound of shots came still from the town, but the bullets which had pressed the Germans to the ground slowly stammered to a stop.

                        The Germans stood and rushed forward as the British Independent Army began to triumph in Oxford.
                        Read Blessed be the Peacemakers | Read Political Freedom | Read Pax Germania: A Story of Redemption | Read Unrelated Matters | Read Stains of Blood and Ash | Read Ripper: A Glimpse into the Life of Gen. Jack Sterling | Read Deutschland Erwachte! | Read The Best Friend | Read A Mothers Day Poem | Read Deliver us From Evil | Read The Promised Land

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                        • Thanks!

                          Carlos

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                          • Let's see what comes now, eh?
                            Read Blessed be the Peacemakers | Read Political Freedom | Read Pax Germania: A Story of Redemption | Read Unrelated Matters | Read Stains of Blood and Ash | Read Ripper: A Glimpse into the Life of Gen. Jack Sterling | Read Deutschland Erwachte! | Read The Best Friend | Read A Mothers Day Poem | Read Deliver us From Evil | Read The Promised Land

                            Comment


                            • You won´t let the Brits win, will you?
                              Heinrich, King of Germany, Duke of Saxony in Cyclotron's amazing Holy Roman Empire NES
                              Let me eat your yummy brain! :D
                              "be like Micha!" - Cyclotron

                              Comment

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