Red Wine

Ali had had enough for the day, all of the customers coming through the station didn’t understand why her product was so expensive compared to the stuff they could get from the large store down the precinct. The wine she sold was true, proper wine made from real grapes, grown in real soil, with real sunlight, not the synth rubbish most people thought of as wine.

This upset her in that no one out here really got it. They had the spare money – most of the people living on Altic Station were rich; they were business owners or ship captains, but the majority had never been to earth.

There was a beep on her personal comp, a message from her business partner – who she shared the running of the little empire of 500 transport ships, and numerous outlets across 10 worlds and 50 space stations.
The wine shop on Altic was the current head office for tax reasons.
Being a new station they were offering good incentives to lure people out here, and they had – much to the annoyance of some of the large guilds that ran the other stations.

What Altic hadn’t expected was a large shipping company to uproot and setup it’s hub here. There had been much hand wrangling from station control when the sudden increase in ArjRen Shipping owned ships started docking, and when Ali and John had pretty much bought half the docking ring for their exclusive use there had been much consternation from the then station master. This had further upset the guilds – the move had cost them billions in revenue from docking and maintenance that major shipping supplied.

The message from John would not make the new station master happy. Due to the increase in “piracy” on ArjRen ships, John had gone and hired a merc group to provide security. And by hired he meant – so the message said – purchased – and he was going to move their base of operations to Altic too. His message went on to say that he had intercepted messages that one of the guilds had been hiring mercs.

The guild that was doing this most was the one that ran the station where ArjRen had been based for the last 200 years. Xenum Station was one of the major hubs, but they imposed heavy taxes on all goods transferred through their station – because there had been no alternative. Alric had never meant to be that alternative – it was too out of the way. except an explorer ship had recently found a FTL point in the system that linked it back to Earth, shaving a mere 5 jumps and 3 weeks off the journey. Altic was now better suited to reach the newer systems and stations, the exploration companies were out in droves searching for more points and angles from the system. Looking for other links, and always the potential for intelligent life.

The next call that came to the office was from the station master.
‘Hi Ali – we seem to have 30 of your ships incoming. They are showing as armed – can you confirm the details I’m sending you please?’
She shook her head and opened the attachment that John had sent and compared it to the list the station master sent over. ‘Yes I can confirm they are all our ships. Due to the increase in piracy we have taken the decision to arm some of our ships. The loss of life has become unacceptable.’
The station master agreed to let them dock as long as any weapons were put under seal before the ships came much closer. Ali was not sure she could get them to shut down the weapons but told the station master she would do what she could.

She was cursing John and the little warning she had given – the timing of the warning – if the message had been delayed by an hour what would have happened!

An hour later all of the warning klaxons went off on the station.


There was little for it, they were stuck in the cheap sleazy hotel for another night. The Captain that had offered them a place and had then changed his mind less than five minutes before he had been due to close the hatches,  had thrown them off the ship….but had kept their gear, well what gear they had managed to get on board. They still had their personals in kit bags.

Kat swore again. She had given up thinking and just used what ever words sprang into her head. Sal just laid back on the bed, this wasn’t the first time this had happened to her, but poor Kat – her first time out riding round the stars and this happened.

They were in a dank, dark room barely three metres by four, there was a corner shaped off for the bathroom, and two beds, one down ether side with just enough room to squeeze between. The light flickered, giving a buzzing noise as it did so.
“I have enough to get us drunk” Sal said, growling from the left bed.
“Ok, let’s go do that” Kat managed to eke out between some new swear words; she was sprawled on the other. Sal didn’t know where the younger woman – if you would call a sixteen year old drop-out a woman – had learnt some of her vocab.
“There was a bar three doors down,” Sal was thinking of cheap booze, and the hotel would cost more if they used the vending machine in the corridor outside. “Might meet some people too.” She was also ever hopeful. How she had managed to keep that after ten years ship hopping she didn’t know. She hoped that Kat would keep it too.
Kat looked at her; the young eyes that Sal had first seen three months ago as she had been told to take the new girl in and show her the ropes on the clapped out tin can that they had been riding on? Those eyes had a dullness to them that hadn’t been there before. A tiredness – after just three months, Sal didn’t think Kat would take to this life long-term, and if she did there would be drugs involved and all the nasty side that she had managed to keep out of – she’d heard of some girls whoring out to the entire ship to pay for passage when they didn’t want to work. Sal shook her head, she wouldn’t think of that, she liked Kat and would keep her under her wing and try to keep her together – keep her sane and out of trouble.
After a quick visit to the small bathroom to freshen up, they made sure that the room was secure, then headed out and down the docks. There were a lot of people stumbling about in the artificial twilight, staggering really, going between the bars and clubs. Cheap booze and cheaper drugs were common out on the far reaches of the Confederation; the local enforcement companies played both sides and sold more of the drugs than any of the drug dealers. They only went after the dealers when they started to cut into their profit margins. Sal knew they needed to find a ship heading back towards the League of Trade, where the stations and the planets cared about the safety and wellbeing of the general populace, where the stations didn’t dim the lights at mid shift – making a dangerous life more so.

As they entered the bar Sal took a good look round and pulled Kat to the empty table she’d seen towards the back; there would be no age checks done here, but best keep her out of plain sight if she could. It would be easy, more of the dingy twilight in here, there was music and the general din of people crowded together.
Looking at the automenu by the table she punched in an order for a bottle of vodka and two glasses and waited for them to arrive. She looked round the room and made a note of everyone there, clearly not a high-flying bar, and it would be doubtful she’d find the type of captain in this place that they needed to get them to safer places. Tomorrow she would start looking properly, going to the jobs system and seeing if any positions had been posted. But tonight they would get drunk and Sal would make sure Kat got back to their room safely and unharmed.
She paused her musing when the waiter brought their drink – he looked at Kat, paused for a moment and then emptied his tray onto the table.
She watched him as he made his way back to the bar.

The “Issues” with writing everything by hand

So, I write everything by hand. Great. But in this age where everything needs to be “backed up”, how do you do that with handwritten paper?

Well – I do two things, the first is I type it up – but not everything gets this treatment (would take me a few years, and a lot of swearing – my hand writing is absolutely terrible!).

So what do I do? I have a camera, a tripod and I take photos of it. These then get stored on my home network and my cloud storage provider.

How to Backup Writing Books

How to Backup Writing Books

Nineworlds 2013 Short 2

The second of my bits from last years Nine Worlds can be found here:

Don was sat in his office. his accountant was sat on the opposite side of the desk, Don cold see he was trembling. Clearly aware of why Don had called him into the office. Tue office with the plastic sheeting on the floor.
‘So.’ said Don, ‘You see we have a problem.’
The accountant nodded.
‘We see to have a mismatch in the amount of product coming though.’ The accountant nodded again. ‘Someone has slipped up. this should have been hidden.’ Again the accountant nodded. ‘You know how important the Heroin Donation Program is. How it preps our next generation of paying customers.’ The accountant nodded again, Don thought he was starting to look like one of the nodding dogs you found in the back of cars. ‘You know how my project runs. You also know how much the others would hate for it to be discovered. How much my police friends would hate it. How much my doctor contacts would rebel.’ The accountant nodded again – Don was starting to hate his little bob of the head. Is this the only response the man could do? Did he not know how to speak to people? How being like this was the worst thing he could be doing right now?

‘I believe,’ Said Don ‘That you know this, that you planned this. You knew that the accounts would be audited – that the others would see the mismatch in product. Fortunately for me, you are not the only accountant working for me. My other accountants have fixed the problem, chased it down in such a way that we have placed the issue and loss of product to you. You are now responsible for the program. And it is you who will answer the hangman. You will be going out tonight and being on the front line of the program.’

The accountant nodded again.

Nine Worlds 2014 – looking forward

After the great long weekend we had last year the wife and I are looking forward to this years Nine Worlds – the 8th August to the 10th, we saw some amazing people last year, learnt so much and had a lot of fun, so this year I have got myself some business cards I can hand out to hopefully keep in contact with people we meet!

Business Card

Some of the tracks I’m looking forward to this year with their intros from the Nine Worlds website:

Lectures, discussions and paper presentations, by geeky students, researchers and academics. Come discuss everything from philosophy in Terry Pratchett to LGBTQ subtext in genre TV, and from the trope of the silent Asian female assassin in comics, to gender performance in Avatar: The Last Airbender.

With over thirty programme items, ALL OF THE BOOKS features workshops, game shows, debates, signings and panels covering all aspects of literary geekery. As well as discussions of everything you might expect (and more!).

Creative Writing:
The creative writing track is brimming with discussions, panels, workshops and socials on all aspects of honing your craft and having a whole lot of creative fun. We’ll be talking about writing your own fantasy language, giving alien perspectives, and creating mysteries for the modern age. We’re looking forward to inspiring new ideas and helping the next Ray Bradbury or Robin Hobb find their feet. From our “Battle Rapping Monsters” kids’ session, to “Creating your Own Fantasy Language”, to our late night “Smut Slam”, we’ve got something for everyone!

Following the success of the Fanfic Track at Nine Worlds 2013, we’ll continue to take a multi-fandom approach in 2014. We’re aiming to provide for all levels of fandom involvement; from those just beginning to explore the joys of fanworks to fans with decades of experience, and from readers to authors to beta-readers. We’ll be exploring fanworks in a wider context, including podficcing, fanvidding, fanart and crafts. We hope to hear a variety of voices, including those of fanfic readers and authors, commentators, fan academics, and professional authors whose writing supports a not-so-secret fanfic habit (some of whom are fanfic authors turned pro). We’re also attempting to situate fanworks in the wider geek context, by joining with other Nine Worlds tracks (including Comics, LGBTQ+, Podcasting, Geek Feminism), and by getting authors, fanficcers and historians to explore the extent to which writing historical fiction is essentially fanfic. We’re going to party, panel, workshop, create, slam, play and discuss. If you’d like to appear on programme, e-mail us at Being in the audience is just fine too.

Food Geekery:
Discover another side to food: we’ll be talking experiential food, home restaurants, food as art, and more, with some of the UK’s most innovative food geeks. Learn about supper clubs and food history, experience edible stories, create your perfect liqueur blend, and look out for our feast of cheese (the edible kind) coupled with cheese (the writing kind.) We’ll also be talking about the roles of food in building fictional worlds, trying out edible knitting, and putting together a collaborative cookbook!

Future Tech:
Future Tech is for the curious-minded. It is designed to let Nine Worlds attendees experience the latest innovations and all sorts of geeks, from NASA scientists to brainwave hackers. As well as talks that’ll challenge and amuse, expect interactive sessions, including gadget demonstrations, coding workshops, hacktivism, gaming, and socialising.

Geek Feminism:
Geek Feminism is a movement which seeks to end sexism, sexist exploitation and oppression in geek culture. The Geek Feminism Track aims to create a space that is interesting and exciting to existing feminists as well as welcoming and safe to those who are new to feminism but understand the need to redress the imbalance in much of mainstream geek culture. We’ll be discussing everything from cyborgs to manga to zombies to the creative industry; hosting our keynote speakers, Laurie Penny and Jane Fae; running a photography project on why geek culture needs feminism, and lots more: see you there!

Race & Culture:
We’re living in the future. Is it post-racial? Probably not. But join us for an exploration of race and culture in science fiction and fantasy fandom: we’ll be hosting discussions of race in SFF, running workshops for writers writing other cultures, and celebrating the work of the people of colour who’ve taken us to the stars.

Retro Fandom (with Redemption):
Brought to you by the Redemption conrunners, Retro Fandom will look at genre media pre-2000 and its effect on current and future shows. We’ll explore the “Golden Age” of British sci-fi in the 1960s and 1970s; the glam, glitz and shoulder pads era of Blake’s 7; and the decade of the emerging story arc in the 1990s, focusing on Babylon 5. We’ll also be looking forward: considering the remaking of Battlestar Galactica in 2004, and the revival of the hero arc in Da Vinci’s Demons.

Retro Fandom will be a chance to share passions, discover new gems, and wallow in undisguised nostalgia. Older fans can share and reassess their fandoms, and all of us can speculate on the exciting new shows and fandoms that owe something to the influence of the old. Join us, for a sometimes light-hearted, and sometimes no-holds-barred, look at the cool, the not-so-cool, and the never-repeated.

Redemption is a fan-run multimedia sci-fi convention, next running in Coventry in 2015

Curated by The Skeptic Magazine, the Nine Worlds Skepticism track will host talks and discussions on science and critical thinking. Skeptics like evidence – so we get into all the most interesting subjects with the question: “How do you back that up?” If you’ve ever wondered about alien contact experiences, vampires, the brain-science of religious experiences, how PR came to rule modern journalism, and lots more: these talks and discussions are for you.

Space, Ships, and Steampunk (with the Royal Observatory):
Astronomers and curators from the National Maritime Museum and the Royal Observatory Greenwich will be running lectures and demonstrations for geeks of all ages, themed around the current special exhibitions running in Greenwich: “Ships, Clocks and Stars: The Quest for Longitude” on navigation at sea; “Stars to Satellites” on the history of satellite navigation; and “Longitude Punk’d”, a steampunk showcase of fantastical inventions alongside historical artefacts.

The Steampunk strand at Nine Worlds looks forward to welcoming you to the “future that never was” hosted by the Victorian Steampunk Society; organisers of The Asylum, Europe’s biggest and longest established steampunk festival. Whether you are a regular member of the British Steampunk Community or you are just interested to learn more about Steampunk then you can be sure of a friendly welcome and something to interest you.

As any big fan of the Whedonverse will know, whether you’re a Browncoat, Doll, or avid Scooby Gang enthusiast: Joss and the team are like demi-gods in the storytelling industry. So what better way to celebrate his work than with an entire track dedicated to the man himself? Although this is only the Whedon Track’s first year at Nine Worlds, they’re expecting it to be one to remember! We’ve got more sessions than you can shake a stake at, from panels and discussions, to singalongs and … well, we don’t want to give away all our surprises! We like to think of people as either loving the Whedonverse, or just not having experienced it yet. So whichever group you belong to, we hope you’ll join us over the weekend for lots of Nine Worlds fun, burdened with glorious purpose!


Nineworlds 2013 Short 1

I have now typed up one of the bits I wrote at last years Nine Worlds – there is some more to come in the next little bit, and there will be some more good stuff coming out of this years convention. If you are able I highly recommend visiting!

Jess wasn’t sure what was happening. She had woken up to the ship shaking and rattling round her. She groggily slipped out of bed and into her uniform; she smiled, or was it a grimace, at it. Japanese school girl with a red neck scarf. She wasn’t sure what the navy had been thinking when they did the uniforms. Obviously something not right with that…

Just as she started dressing the alarm klaxons went off, the short burst followed by three longer ones – the alarm for space rock. There should not be any space rock anywhere near their location. As first helm she had plotted the well-travelled route herself. Either someone on the third shift had messed with the helm computer or something had happened – neither of those were good options. She knew third helm – he would not do anything with the program – not unless something serious had given him cause.

She ran down the corridor, she saw the other main bridge crew ahead of her. She dropped into her seat as third helm gracefully moved himself out of the chair. Jess plugged in her jack – that special cable helms had that connected them directly to the ship. Letting use the speed of the brain to give commands – eliminating the seconds taken to process moving limbs to move a lever or press a button.

The display came up on her bionic eyes – projecting directly into the retina.

She could see it was debris; she took the ship under control and changed her left eye to have the display from the scan. It was showing the size of the chunks, the composition, and the note from the scan tech that the debris was from a ship, there was evidence of cannon fire – and data was still coming in. there was an alert showing that weapons were online and ready if they found a target.

The captain sent Jess the order to move the ship out of the debris field and to hold position in a safe location. This was where they were meant to be, to meet a contact. Jess knew what that meant – illegal cargo. It didn’t bother her – she sometimes found it odd that the navy was involved in this – but she knew that the corruption was rife. She knew that almost all captains of lone ships were involved in some way.

She gently moved the ship out, all the while one thought on the jump command – pre-set to take them ten light minuets out from their current position.

She kept an eye on the scan data; she saw the notes suggesting the debris was of the ship they were due to meet.

There was nothing showing yet on scans for what had happened, Jess was carefully holding station now – she had nothing to do while the scan techs scoured space – looking for anything, any change, any sign of ship activity.

They pulled in something, Jess guessed at the flight recorder of the other ship. She watched the scan screen as the data was going into it. Still no contacts in the area. There wouldn’t be – while well-travelled – this route was normally taken in jump – they had dropped out in the middle of nowhere. They were between systems, in the dark where few ships had the engine capacity to jump back out of again. It made the list of potential attackers very small. The navy, or one of the few large pirate ships – which were captured Navy ships. The onship jump generator was a very closely guarded military secret. The name of the debris changed in the scan data – it was the ship they had come to meet. The Renascence – a Navy destroyer; the sister ship to their Radison.

The captain came back onto the bridge half an hour later; he had been looking at the logs and recordings from the Ren. He had the look of a man betrayed, pushed over the edge. Jess didn’t want to know what he had found in the recordings but she was sure she would find out in the not too distant future. ‘Coms’ said the captain, ‘We need a secure channel to the area commander on base X153Y.’ ‘Yes sir!’ replied the little old man that had coms this shift/ Jess could see him working his console, talking to someone when he got an answer.

Jess saw him transfer the com to the captain – who was using his implanted computer to communicate. Jess was sure she would be moving the ship any moment now.

When the captain finished he was red faced and clearly very angry. ‘Helm. Set course for base F15X3. Best speed.’ ‘Sir!’ Replied Jess – they had been called to their own base – not the local one. Jess set the course and as required with all trips to base she sent the flight plan ahead; informing them of the expected arrival, the point of entry and trajectory.

Jess let engineering know they would be jumping – gave the, five minutes to make sure all was ok with the drive. The countdown reached zero and Jess sent the command to jump. The ship lurched just as the thought was sent; the scan screen blurred and adjusted as the Radison entered jump – it showed two ships approaching where they had been, weapon fire had brushed their hull. Where had they come from? There had been no sign of entry, no results on the very active scan they had been using the previous hours. She guessed scan would be having a word with the captain to explain what he had missed – Jess looked out of the corner of her eye and could see the sweat already forming on his forehead, the hurried tapping as he was going through all the data again – looking for the thing he had missed.

Jess would have preferred he was watching if they were being followed into jump – even though everyone said it was impossible – she was convinced you could do it. She had a theory – not that she had any ready way of proving it right now, she would need to talk to her friendly scan second sometime. See if she would help – if they could prove it the navy would only benefit.

Carefully she slipped her copy of the scan screen to the feed – using the various little hooks she had in the system, fuzz. All she got from it. Fuzz. She let the feed slip back to what she was being given by scan first. It would be another couple of hours before they dropped out of jump. The main crew went off shift and second came on. She left a message for scan second to investigate things for her. They would catch up when they were both off shift together next. Jess left the bridge and headed to the galley for food. A quick snack meal, nothing hot and a quick drink of water. She then stopped by the gym and did her required workout; humanity still had issues with muscle and bone loss while in space. Once she had finished that she headed back to her cabin, time to get some sleep and out of her uniform.

She slipped back into her pyjamas and into bed; she knew things would either be calm or mayhem when they dropped out of jump.

This time the klaxons actually woke her – no tell tale shudder thought the ship to give her those seconds to wake up. She was bolt upright, it was the GQ alarm. She checked the clock – they would be about an hour from dropping down from jump. She ran though getting dressed and was on the bridge in less than two minutes. She was the first of the main crew to make it, and the second captain looked relived to see her. She slipped into her seat and plugged into the ship. She pulled the ship scan to her screen – and it wasn’t the fuzz she’d got before. This time there was a very clear indication of two ships close – too close – and they both showed to be ones from the wreckage site. ‘How do we have scan?’ she asked. Second scan replied, ‘I was fine tuning some of the sensors – doing general maintenance – and this is what happened when I pressed a hidden option.’ She smiled and shrugged. ‘Is this real? It’s not a ghost from our last scan data?’ Jess wanted to be sure. She had to know if she was going to try any kind of manoeuvre as they dropped from their jump.

The captain entered and was given an update by his second. He looked at the second scan as first came in. ‘Second scan keep position. First scan – stand down.’ He turned and left the bridge, looking defeated and deflated.

Jess prepped her commands; she prepped an emergency jump drop. Everything she could think of. As soon as they hit normal space the ship was going to start some very erratic manoeuvring.

Writers Block

It’s something that happens to everyone that writes, they get a block; nothing will move from them to the page – be it paper or computer. So – how do you over come this when it happens? Over the years I have tried a few different things as suggested to me at various events/courses:

  • Hat/bowl of words – you take a sheet of paper with words on it – say from a newspaper, cut them all out and have a hat/bowl with them all in. then when you need a hand you grab two bits of paper from the hat and you have something to write, you can get all sorts of strange things and topics from doing this!
  • Objects – take two objects at random, either from a walk or in the house, and you can use them as some sort of inspiration.
  • Reading – and I don’t mean plagiarising – I mean reading something like a newspaper – there are often news articles out there to give glimmers of ideas, you could read a journal aimed at something you are writing about, will give you insights into that field and something may just “click”.
  • Go for a walk – I often hear of people walking and having their mind clear when something just comes in – hint – take something with you to make notes with, a pad of paper or a mobile phone with a note taking app on it (I use OneNote as it syncs with my laptop and I kind of live in it – but Evernote or similar would work).
  • Talk to strangers – in the café, on the train, in the queue at the shops. Talk to people and you get all sorts of stories – go dog walking and talk to other people out walking their dogs – find out what their dogs get up to and you have a plotline of sorts!

So – take these for a spin if you have to, and please share any others that you have found useful!


The differences in spelling (of numerous words) between “British English” and “American English” (sorry – horrid names – but I didn’t come up with them) isn’t a problem for people in the UK or USA – unless you count the scattering of wavy red lines in MS Word, the problem is for people who are learning English as a 2nd – or maybe even a 3rd language. Which spellings should they use?

Personally I don’t really mind and I will often use both myself, and I would say to anyone learning our language – it doesn’t matter – as long as you are consistent. For example if you are going to use the US spelling of colour (which is color), make sure you use the US spelling of things like honour (honor). Obviously if you’re planning to move to an English-speaking country it would be worth learning the spellings that country uses, mainly to avoid confusion when you read newspapers or magazines etc.

The English language is a complex thing, it has grown and developed over the last two thousand years or so, it has merged and incorporated other languages. It’s a living thing. I have a 1996 edition of the Oxford English Reference Dictionary on my shelf – the cover proudly states 192,000 definitions and entries. I’m not sure of the number of “words” defined – but there are 1686 pages of it (plus a load of appendices after that). According to The Global Language Monitor there are 1,013,913 words in English (according to French has around 220,000).

But saying all of this the one thing I do not like is the “text” speak that today’s youth seem to like using, call me old-fashioned (and I’m only in my 30’s), but when I send a text I spell everything out fully with the correct capitalisation and punctuation, not doing the abbreviations, this has in recent years spread to services like twitter with its 140 character limit – again here I try to spell things fully and not resort to these abbreviations, and back to the people learning English, how do they know that great and gr8 could mean the same thing?
Sticking to using full words in the limitations (although SMS is not really limited on modern phones) allows a greater range of words to be used – is great for this!

So go forth and use this great language to its fullest, whether you use British or American, like having u’s in words, love or detest z’s and if you want re or er – just write something and enjoy the words.

Incoming – pt .1

It was a slow shift in traffic control, there had in fact been a slowdown in incoming traffic for the last three shifts. And the computer had noticed.

Dave was sat at his command station when he got the alert from the computer. It also sent him a splurge of news that it has sucked from the few ships that had docked. And it had highlighted some disturbing things. At least the computer thought they were disturbing.

Dave was inclined to agree with it. They all indicated that Earth had gone crazy.

This wasn’t the normal level of crazy that happened on a semi regular basis, this was full on someone had turned the planetary defences on all of the orbiting stations crazy.

The news didn’t say what had caused this. But Dave knew. Everyone that had served on the line knew.

There was something about serving on a spaceship for several years at a time that didn’t agree with some people. And the hyper jumps for FTL didn’t help; they put a lot of stress on the human body. Dave knew – his navy career was in tatters because he had problems with FTL. The fact he had even been given the command he had was an indication that he was not long in uniform.
‘Sir!’ yelled one of the scan techs.
‘Go ahead Jim.’
‘There is something big coming out of FTL at system edge, the relays have just sent us a high priority warning.’
‘How big?’
‘Big sir, they haven’t sent an ident sir. They have flagged at unknown ships with a possible first contact warning.’
Dave tapped into his console to lookup the regs for first contact; in all human space history they had never been used. There was another ten hours before the ships were within range of the station, at least they – whoever they were – hadn’t come in close to the station. Although that could have been a bad thing too – why draw out the issue?
‘What navy ships are in system?’ Dave asked the room.
‘Just the Destroyer Marvellous Infinity.’
‘Get the skipper on the com please.’ Dave brought up the details of the skipper while the com tech did as he was asked.
‘Captain Ruiz on com for you sir.’
‘Captain – this is station master Kirby. We have an unidentified ship or ships at ten hours out. Please prepare for possible hostile action or first contact.’
‘Do you have any information on them Station Master?’ Asked Ruiz.
‘Not at this time – we got an auto alert from the relays. I will pass on more info as and when we get it.’
‘Understood Station Master. Infinity out.’
Dave relaxed a little. A destroyer wouldn’t be much good if it was an invasion. But it could at least send a signal probe out towards Earth and hopefully warn them of anything that happened.

Routling around hard drive

I was looking in random folders on the laptop and came across these, no idea what they are or where they came from (not my best work by any stretch of the imagination), but they have date stamps of 2001 and 2003 – so while I was still at uni, wonder what bit of coursework I got tired of working on or books/films I had been reading/watching when I “needed” to write these 🙂

During the second age of man, during the great war of good and evil, the strength that was leaders of the light cast the last spell to be cast for a thousand years. This spell was not just spell it was The Spell. This spell was cast to prevent the evil which magic was consuming the land. This spell had never been cast before apart from when Elerbran the Great first discovered the spell, which had drastic consequence for him and everything around him. When he first discovered the spell the great library, were he had been working was almost total destroyed, the spell almost killed him. When he had cast the spell the area around were the library had stood became aura free. This meant that no magic could be cast in the area. In last days of the War when all was not going well for Armies of life, the great council of light gathered for the last time and with all the magical abilities together the cast the spell. The spell caused the Aura of the whole Earth to be destroyed removing the evil magic that had been plaguing the planet. Without the Aura that had once surrounded the planet, magic started to fade, this fading of the Magic had two effects; prevented all magic on the planet, also the magic which had already been cast on earth started to fail, including The Spell. So the Aura started to return. Sending magic into myths and legends… This aura is now returning…


It was a nice sunny day and Jake was looking out over the lake, the sun rippled orange on the blue-green water. The wind ruffled his hair and the leaves on the nearby trees.
It was peaceful, the way Jake liked it, the way that was to end the next day when he set off to war in the army. War, the thought brought shivers to his spine, all that blood and gore, he couldn’t even stand the sight when he cut himself, how would he cope with the blood that would spill over his, over the sea of bright green grass.
He felt the presence of another behind him, he smiled as he smelt the perfume of his wife, Aganla
‘My love, you look troubled’ she said.
Turning he placed his arms round her waist, gave he a quick kiss, ‘It is the war. I do not wish to go, but I know that I must or be killed for the coward that I am.’ There was a tint of sadness in his voice. Aganla looked at him, ‘You shall never be a coward, never in my eyes nor the eyes of our children.’
The sadness on his face intensified. ‘Our children will be told that their father was a coward by the soldiers. Please do no try to hurt my feelings by lying to me.’
‘The let us have one night of happiness before the end of our lives as we know them.’
Arm in arm they walked towards the hut that they lived in.

The next morning Jake left his wife’s arms while she still slept and crept out into the night, while he did not want to bring shame to his family he had come to the decision that he was not going to fight in the war. He was going to try and stop the war, he wasn’t sure how, but he was going to try.
As he walked towards the lake for his final view he saw the sky light up in a blaze of lightning, like nothing he’d ever seen before. Maybe the tales he had heard as a child about the wizard in the mountains on the other side of the lake, maybe he could find out.
He started towards the inlet about a mile to the west so that he could take a boat and leave over the lake, he heard the sound of marching men, the army had come to claim the men, when he was found to be gone; he would have to go another way to the other side.

Gerry often wondered what it was like to fly. He’s seen other people doing it, but he knew he could not, never would be able to fly
He was deformed, and while the others didn’t say anything to his face, he knew they would rather he was not around them
He looked at the stumps where his wings were supposed to be, he felt the welling feeling of shame as it came to him. Why was he cursed like this! Oh great Thiran why?
He often asked this of the God of People, why was he deformed and the others were not? Why was it do bad that the deformed were shunned? He never got his answer, or more to the point, he did. Thiran was shunning him, that’s why the others were uncomfortable round him.

Thiran heard the anguish in the younglings’ calls, but he could not bear to look upon this one and incur the wrath of Heiklin; The God of War.