Saturday, February 14, 2009

Awaiting the Philistines

It was a modest bedroom converted long ago into a library. And the library contained many, many books. It's a rare thing to see real books in the 62nd century, but it's even rarer in the Badlands. Paper doesn't do well in the brutal, slightly corrosive aridity of the Western Desert, but the library was full of books nonetheless. The old man pulled one off the shelf, opened it gently to preserve the spine - as if that mattered now - and smiled to himself.

"How appropriate," he mumbled through his white mustache and read aloud, "'It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.'"

"Uncle!" someone at the doorway stamped impatiently, "we have to go! You have to hide!"

"Yes yes," Henri Greer didn't look up, but he did close the book gently in a huff. He placed it on the table, snatched up his cane and walked to the door. Henri swallowed hard, and headed out of his house. It had been his home for the last fifteen cycles, ever since he had been exiled. Now, it seemed, the Republic had found him. He frowned. It didn't make sense.

Moments later Henri was ushered into the Harris home. He felt guilt wash over him. These Badlanders had become his adopted family. Now they were putting themselves in danger for an old man.

"Uncle, you'll be safe here," said Jeremiah Harris, the dry goods merchant, with some trepidation, "we'll make sure the MILICIA doesn't find you."

"MILICIA eh?" Henri nodded, as he descended the stairs to the cellar, "seems like Professor Greer doesn't rate the Republican Army anymore. I must be losing my touch."

"Hush Uncle!" Jeremiah replied tersely, "I have a friend from the War, from Timmins. He can get you to safety."

"A friend from the War?" Henri looked up patiently at his host as he sat on a small stool in the cool cellar. The old man's bones creaked audibly, "who would that be now, Jeremiah?"

"A leader in the Resistance," Jeremiah's eyes flashed with admiration of the memory of the man who led him in battle, "Benjamin Cantor!"

Henri Greer blinked, "Cantor? Hmmph. Small world."


Hermes 72 - Heavy Gear RPG - Most artwork Copyright 2002 Dream Pod 9, Inc.