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Posted: Feb 16 2013, 03:02 PM
He had a feather in his pocket. In less words. Angus had a feather.
He’d carried it all the way from Canterbury along the shore cliffs “North till London,” as the old man had put it. But he knew this land now, quite nearly from the back of his hand ( as he had in fact drawn such things there once or twice during his travels, like some forensic artist memorizing the land ) and these days, there was very little left aside from the areas sectioned off by military barbed wire or the sound of dogs out in a distance. The map carried in the bag at his hip knew of every landmine field and patrolled area of the countryside. Especially of that regarding the lower South end of the Island. Just below and a bit West of London. This was unexpressed territory to his maps and inner knowledge... as luckily as he had been never having to have pushed that far into German conquer.
But he had a feather. And that was one more possession than he ever thought well to bring along. Which, of course he had not. It was a token of the sea side- the tail or wing feather of a Kestrel found along the open fields of peppered white flowers something to the kin of Baby's Breath, but less so sweet.
He’d run his thumb over the soft yielding edges for hours. Trudging steadily, lifting his boots to keep sight of his feet in the knee high grasses. Trying to keep count of all his fingers and toes so long as he travelled ( and sometimes even when he had long returned home ) and soon, though he avoided for as long as he could, the tiny, hair fine threads would fray and part from their neat shape from beneath his fidgeting fingers. His stress ball of sorts would have be dropped long before he made it to London.
The sidepack bumping against his hip with each long step became heavy by the time he’d broken free of the country field and felt the rough, packed earth of the main dirt road where towns would appear and eventually build themselves into the heights of London. He’d not rested nor stopped for sips from his canteen since the first tiny town met outside of Canterbury, but his parched lips were ignored in favour of progress. He’d be fed if he made it; sheltered til the next day and maybe even showered if the location was anything he hoped it was... but the Rebels were a poorer company. Conducted of good citizens turned thieves and housewives gone warriors since the new hierarchy had stolen from them all that they had. London was the personification of survival.
But Angus knew it wasn't the weight of his travels turning his pack hot to the thought. The letters were what made his heart burn coals. It wasn't fear... was it? No, he was not afraid except in the sense that this survival instincted him to fear. It was duty, at best; the ambition of knowing that this mattered. His job mattered. Was relied on. That the information he carried could mean the end of a war. at least one day. And by the time he’d made it into the city itself, this had been chanted through his head nearly a thousand times along with the steady brush with the pad of his thumb against that tattered feather. Having been forgotten to be discarded of as he’d said it would be.
The visit was slow coming and quiet. Men passing around a revolver or two while others chuckled and wiped the dirt from their faces and instead gathered it beneath their fingernails. They were a confident bunch. All of them he’d always known so; a reassuring presence, to be able to see this group with your own eyes instead of just in rumor stories. And to know that this, in the abandoned lot of an old furniture company he might have known folks to come to once upon a time, that this was only a hollowed fraction of what England had built ( and what the Americans had chipped in as brothers beside them )
A man would approach- perhaps thirty-six if Angus’s character determining skills had improved any- bumping his chin with one large work-grizzled paw where the boy was a great deal shorter and thinner than he. “Gillan! Aye boy. You didn’t meet trouble, then? You’ve both arms and legs, be thankful for that.” and he’d take the bundle of letters as they were offered to him. Important. Him. Important.
“Quite a few, yeah. Vorner didn’t want to waste travel this time. He apologises its been so long without word; wanted to wait till he had more to send.” and somewhere at the back of his mind, Angus hoped it hadn’t been a dig at his travel time. He wasn't the only Rebel messenger, but he sure as hell was the quickest one. And god almighty, if there was any mercy still left out in his kind arms, he couldn’t lose this one. “Aaaah. Take it easy, yeah? Canterbury isn't exactly right next door, you look exhausted.” and then Angus wouldn't help the lean he had into the arm settled across his shoulders. Eyes heavy but mind still alert. And if he hadn’t been awake before, the explosive bang of metal doors being forced in against their hinges would have made sure of so.
impatient they start, fearful at end
Posted: Feb 16 2013, 09:02 PM
A pale, slender finger brushed along the polished brim of his uniform cap, fumbling with the sturdy leather before pulling it down over his tangled curls. He took a moment to adjust its position, so the badge sat in the very centre. The Hounds, like most branches of any military organisation were very particular about uniform and how it was worn. He had spent the morning scrubbing the blood and other unidentifiable grime off his boots until they were glistening again. Their Hauptsturmführer would expect to see his stern face in them when he marched past for inspection. This was the starting point of a raid. And even when storming into this place to watch these rebellious vermin writhe and squirm in their grasp, they had to look the part. Even the brass buttons were glistening.
Cael cast a final glance at himself in the mirror, running his hand along his shoulders to brush himself off. With a reassuring nod, he turned to leave, boots squeaking against the linoleum. He joined the others, all men superior or equal in rank. Yet, there had been whisperings of promotion from liebling Sturmmann to an NCO. Perhaps tonight was his time to shine and to prove his worthiness of the rank. It was after all a very important raid. They had located a prime spot for rebel gathering and if things worked out as they ought to, there would be rebel brains dirtying his boots this time around.
Gathering in formation and making their leave to break into their not so secret spot had a surge of adrenaline rushing through him. Excitement kicking in the moment they took for their kubelwagons and approached the old furniture factory. A cigarette dangled in-between his lips, not bothering to participate in the excited chatter amongst the soldiers who he shared vehicle space with. Instead, he took to focusing on the bitter sweet taste of the nicotine and tobacco flavour that stained his tongue. In haling the smoke. Feeling the warmth against his throat. Before inhaling it into a thick puff of white against the night sky. He spared a moment of thought for his Angus. The man would perhaps be tucked up, cosy. In bed with a cup of tea...well perhaps that was somewhat inaccurate. More like slumped at his desk, drowning in his mammoth pile of work. He found himself smirking. He hadn't paid him much attention these past few days. Perhaps he'd pay him a surprise visit tomorrow.
Smoking down to the base of his cigarette, he flicked the butt into the street, jerking forward with the squeak of tyres crunching against the asphalt in announcement of their arrival. Without a moment of hesitation, he hopped from his place and took position in formation. The Privates took their positions at the front. Cael however was destined for far more than to be shot down upon arrival and so he took his position to the rear, alongside his mentor. The doors were forced open and they were rushed inside the old factory, walther gripped tightly in his grasp, greeting the stunned band of rebels with fierce shouts from the hound soldiers.
“Hands up. Hands up or we shoot you dead!” A voice boomed through the room, followed by a string of heavy German curses. The footsteps of the thirty hound soldiers that led the raid echoed through the room, rifles and guns aimed in their direction. Before Cael had barely set foot inside the building, the richochets of a bullet being fired through the air and splitting a rebel's head open burst along his ear drums. Followed by a heavy shriek of terror from one onlooker. The man dropped to the floor, leaving behind a nasty spray of blood. He supposed he had made a wrong move. Or, the hounds had wanted to make an impression. Either way, not an ounce of remorse was spared. They had come here to stop the rebels dead in their tracks and if that meant the murder of every last fucker in here, so be it.
my twisted little brain
Posted: Feb 16 2013, 10:31 PM
He’d been back at home not too long ago. Huddled in the corner of the one bedroom flat pressed as close to the furnace as he could be. Wrapped four blankets thick where he could not turn the heat on past the first notch in fear of high electricity bills he would never have been able to pay off come pay time. But of all the places he’d found for let, this had by far been the best. And of course, every stain in the rugs and the rooms were overlooked for the sake of decent rent prices. And they ( the rooms of course ) were always tidied (all one of them, not counting the pint sized loo in the back) tiles were cracked and the windows had long grew dim. No, that was poetically polite. The grime upon the glass had been there for years. ‘Centuries’, if you asked Angus.
But the shelves were neat, and his suits and clothes were kept pressed (the few pairs he had managed on his own and a few jumpers from mummy dearest) and despite his tendencies to coil away from dirt, Angus had even grown comfortable enough to remove his shoes at the door and proceed in only his socks. (not quite ready to venture barefoot)
He had little company here. The rebels were friends in work... as was everyone back at the office where he printed for the local Papers. And if he didn’t meet them down at a pub or theatre, he often didn’t meet anyone at all. And it wasn’t, for say that he was unlikeable... but Angus kept a tight schedule. If he wasn’t working he was sleeping, and if he wasn’t sleeping he was hovering over pen and paper. And if he had managed all that, he’d run down to the Fox’s Den for work smuggling letters across England... anything to help. Anything. He was no fighter, though he’d often convinced himself well capable of fending off any easy offender; Say a bit of handsy company over a pint on a pub night or an unarmed mugger underestimating the lean body beneath the wool of thick jumpers.
And then, of course... there was Cael. He was of every sort. Nothing concretely definable. Both bold and yet easily flustered given the right words or touches. And Angus had learned nearly all of them. Touch his shoulders- and he was putty. Touch his hips and he was fire. But his face- that was possession. Like leading a horse by gold thread. And he’d often dreamt of it...
Cold nights left to refuge of the blankets that no longer served him any real warmth. Squeezing his eyes closed and willing the morning to come faster. Because his dreams were just as frightful if they were not filled with him. Two intelligent eyes. Quiet lips when they are pressed to his. But those eyes never stopped quite so easily. He could feel his palm resting just against jaw and cheek; guiding forward and in over him till his shoulders fell back softly against the bed- at mercy to the needed warmth looming in above him.
But the touch would wake him- hands upon his chest and he’d jolt upright and gasp as though the ‘old hag’ had just let up her heavy claws. Unable to do anything but squeeze his eyes closed and weep. Sob himself rigid till exhaustion made left him unable to dream when he at last slept again. The nights spend outside during his travels were no different. Except perhaps lonelier. Less familiar. He always cried harder then.
But this wasn’t the time he had to think on this; he’d not slept in days and he had long began to feel it in his bones and muscles. Eyes heavy and glossy. He’d been urged to sit and eat and drink. Almost to the point where he thought maybe, if he tried, he could sleep upon the old couch shuffled to one side of the great room. Despite the busy shifting and chatter of people moving about around him. But the crash roused him hours before he’d have ever settled, and Angus was on his feet instinctively within seconds; alert head pivoting about to make clear the sound. But the first gunshot was the clearest indication of danger. Dropping himself forward to duck behind the couch; much the only shelter within safe distance.
By some luck, Gillan remained on his feet, peering up over the couch when at last he willed himself a deep breath and a mouthful of courage. It wasn’t what he needed to see.
Not now. Not in a lifetime. And he should have been ready; a bullet was death, and the hounds weren’t bred for mock shots. Their pedigree was a ninety percent kill rate. And the only one who lived, lived by a permitted force.
The blood hit his nose first; he’d realised someone had shouted something, but they hadn’t registered as words until sometime later; “Hands up. Hands up or we shoot you dead.” but Angus was no fool. He knew “Then we’ll kill you anyways.” was intended though not said. And it hit him. Just like that- scanning over the faces as they filed in one by one in numbers he were too frightened to properly count but instead filed away somewhere to the back of his mind – that the only one familiar wasn’t by Rebel trade. And it was the last face he ever wanted to see in uniform.
Cael looked just as cold as the rest of them. Marching to the beat of a gunshot. Loyal as a dog and just as fierce as one. Angus, on the edge of consciousness, was sure his stomach would not hold. His throat drew words from the base of his sternum—coiling them clumsily from the back of his dry tongue. “CAE-“ only to be choked off horribly weak when large, gun trained hands ceased him by the roots of his hair. Hauling him backwards and up till there was hot, clammy breath against his neck, and his hands could do no more in his shock than grapple helplessly at one wrist. “NO STOP-! I NEED TO SEE HIM- STOP!“
There was laughter to chase his desperation. Sticky, mirthless laughter right against the shell of his ear where the dark hair was being gripped away to expose them. He shuddered, then in panic, began kicking out a foot to catch the man’s shins, though it seemed not to move his iron grip. Only tighten it. “This one’s mine to play with.” he cackled, turning Angus’s stomach inside out. “Think he knows anything worth snapping bone for?”
impatient they start, fearful at end
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