Greetings, lovely internet folk. Sorry it’s been a while- my discipline as a writer is still under development. And I’ve been working on back-end things for the site as well as other behind-the-scenes work here at Verbal Realms. Anyhow, the following is for your enjoyment and perhaps your edification:
Ben Dulgoon woke slowly- stretching his arms above him and lowering them a few times before opening his eyes. The ceiling panels in his cell and in the hall were slowly flickering to life. Part of the flicker was the lights coming online one at a time, while part was provided by the shimmer of the transparent door. The doors weren’t force fields (too expensive to waste on prisoners), but they did carry a current and a decent punch if you ran into them on accident. He stood up slowly and relieved himself in the toilet by the corner. A few stray flecks hit the sides, and a small, wiry bot hurried out of a narrow panel in the wall and proceeded to sanitize the area vigorously. Ben hated those things.
It had been five years- give or take- since he had been interned at Cordis Detention Center. That was before war had broken out, or at least before the Confederation had recognized it as such. The Confederation had a long history of pretending things were different than they were, as far as Ben was concerned. He thought back to his home, to Gemini II. The moon and its twin had been terraformed centuries past into rich, tropical biomes which were excellently suited for year-round, small-scale farming and harvesting.
The dream behind the Gemini project had been far more optimistic than that of Beatrah Major. Beatrah had undergone minimal modifications due to its habitable atmosphere and ozone and, even more importantly, the ready accessibility of mineral resources. The Confederation had designated it as an industrial moon with a focus on shipbuilding. However, by the time Ben’s grandparents had been born, the Confederation had essentially crumbled due to infighting among the core worlds. A few well-placed fission explosions were all it took to wipe out the Council, Commissioners, and anyone who cared about what happened on the latest, now-forgotten colonization projects. And yet, leaders in Beatrah saw themselves as the Confederation in this system and purported to be the continuation of lawful governance.
What a farce, thought Ben.
Continue reading Escape From Cordis
Hey all! As we transition back from the holidays, we have another chapter of Koeleth from Matt with Chapter 8 in editing now. Hope you enjoy and share with your friends!
Chronicles of Koeleth
An Old Friend
“Ah, here’s where things started to get interesting,” the old man said.
“Oh? How so?” the young bartender asked.
“Well, Tom and Collin meet some interesting people right about now.”
The old man’s answer was cryptic and not really an answer at all, according to the bartender.
Tom was leaning against the heavy wooden door at the entrance to the White Tower. After a peaceful night and an uneventful morning, he and Collin had finally reached the monument to a bygone era. Collin was immediately absorbed in his studies, leaving Tom to keep his vigil. For the past three hours, it had carried on in that fashion and the day showed no signs of changing. Tom had searched every inch of the tower for any signs of bandits or ruffians, and he found nothing. Feeling that they were safe, he had allowed himself to relax some. He hadn’t totally forgotten his duties, however, and decided that the entrance to the structure would be a wise place to perch himself. That was how he arrived at his current position. With the exception of an occasional excited outburst from Collin, the tower was quiet and peaceful. Tom was daydreaming when the wooden door burst open. Despite his shock, Tom quickly went into action, rushing out the door and swinging the butt end of his halberd out at his perceived assailant. Much to his surprise, a small buckler calmly pushed the blow away.
Continue reading Koeleth Ch. 7
Here it is!
Chronicles of Koeleth
A History of Trouble
Tom, who was growing rather tired of the recent early mornings, awoke his temporary boarder, and they made the final preparations for their journey. Aside from his armor, weapon, and travel pack, Tom grabbed a couple of maps, in case they were needed, although that should not be necessary while they were on the road. Much to Tom’s relief, Aaron had not pulled any of his usual shenanigans on Collin’s equipment. After a hearty breakfast, Tom and Collin climbed into the cart and set off. Aaron was still sleeping in his bed, blissfully unaware of Tom’s mission.
Continue reading Koeleth Chapter 6
Here it is, ladies and gents! Matt has been pounding these out over the last few weeks, and it is my pleasure to share chapters 5 and 6 with you today. Enjoy!
Chronicles of Koeleth
A Stroll through Town
Tom awoke late the next morning. When he first opened his eyes, he was shocked by his surroundings and initially thought he had awoken in someone else’s home. He soon regained his bearings, however, and, realizing how late it was, began to prepare himself for the day ahead of him. There was still paperwork to sort out, being a new citizen of Ramsthrone, and his house was ill-furnished, having only the barest necessities. He groomed himself in much the same manner he had the day prior. He robed himself once more in his finer clothes, leaving his familiar, ragged travel attire hanging in the closet. Even his weapon he left leaning against the wall in his overlarge closet. Despite the silence of the house, none of the noise he carelessly made disturbed his housemate, Aaron, who was sleeping heavily in one of the guests rooms. Tom moved himself to the kitchen and prepared a large meal, knowing that it might be some time before he would get another chance to eat. After tending to his meal, he surveyed the mansion, planning what he wanted and where he wanted it. He grimaced when he noticed the small golden ram sitting in his gallery but decided it would only encourage Aaron if he removed it, and he left it alone. Having determined what he wanted done, he left through the large front door of the mansion. Tom’s first stop would be the municipal offices.
Continue reading Koeleth Chapter 5
Koeleth is not forgotten! Though it has been a while since we have been able to put a chapter up, Matt has been making continual progress. Thus, we have several chapters to grace you with over the following weeks.
For those who may have noticed, we continue to make site improvements both behind the scenes and in graphical enhancements. So stick with us! The best is yet to come. Without further ado:
Koeleth Chapter 4
Chronicles of Koeleth
Tom woke up early the next morning, which came as a surprise to Aaron, who had never seen Tom wake up earlier than he had needed to in the two months that he’d known him. Tom made use of the bathroom provided by the inn to purge himself of the dirt and dust of the road. Going in, he looked like an impoverished beggar, but, coming out, he had cleaned up nicely. He had slicked back his usually messy hairdo, and he even bothered to groom his beard more than usual. After rummaging around in his travel pack for a couple seconds, he produced clean, unmarred, gentleman’s attire, wholly foreign to his usual wardrobe. The transformation complete, he hardly resembled the road weary warrior from before. This all came as a great shock to the half awake Aaron, and he couldn’t help but comment.
“Who are you, and what did you do with Tom?” he muttered.
Continue reading Koeleth Chapter 4
Jack here with my first short story for this wonderful site. I am looking forward to contributing as I am able and to helping Matt and Sorin get things up and running. We are now on Reddit! (VerbalRealms) Read and enjoy!
(P.S. Site email is incoming, so you will soon be able to email in your comments, suggestions, fan fiction, love/hate mail, tribute songs, artwork, cosplay, conspiracy theories, cookie dough recipes, and captioned cat photos!)
The sunshine and clear sky Ed could see through the driver-side window of his old pickup felt jarring as he drove up the well-worn path to the farmhouse. Funerals are supposed to be overcast. Bill and Jessica were riding with him today, and Ed mused that it was probably the first time his kids had ridden in the truck with him in at least twenty years. They rolled to a stop, and he jammed the parking brake back. It took a few tries to stick, but that didn’t worry Ed. It was old and rusted- not much different than he was. Bill opened his door and ran around the hood. “Can I give you a hand, dad?” Ed waved him off and hauled himself down. Being an old widower doesn’t make me an invalid, d***it.
Continue reading The Things We Forget