Since I don’t feel like wasting my reject writing projects anymore, I thought people might get a kick out of this. So I have this 70-ish page novella lying around that’s basically the A-Team that I’m not going to continue in this fashion, so I figured I might as well share it over the course of a month or two to generate at least some regular content. So have “fun”.
The Multiverse (Earth 7538) – The Year 1581 A.D.
Deputy Vice Chancellor Hermann Voigt of the United Kingdom of Greater Brandenburg stepped into a stinking wyvern turd. It had just lied there, directly in front of his office. The upper-mid level bureaucrat glared left and right. Men-at-arms, handmaidens, smiths, all seemingly aware of what had just occurred and simultaneously busy looking innocently elsewhere. Voigt sighed, counted silently to fünf, and continued his walk, hastening his pace.
The city of Hamburg had never been intended to be a capital of a kingdom, and it showed these days. As such the fourth most important bureaucrat in the state had to be content with walking to the palace on foot, as the streets were blocked by cavalrymen, wyvern riders trying to pick up fair maidens, and the city watch trying to keep – and failing to – keep order. No way a litter could navigate the streets in the middle of rush hour and so he had to both walk at a brisk pace and stop every few meters to try and get the remnants of wyvern lunch from his best leather boots while not trying to step into any more.
Voigt cursed under his breath even has people made way for him, which was hard in the winding cobbled streets between all the carts and mustering soldiers, but they managed to make it worth. “Make way, make way for the deputy vice chancellor,” some helpful voice screamed in the local dialect that Voigt barely understood in anything but vague meaning. As the streets cleared for him as best as they could he could finally dare to raise his eyes from the filthy streets of hay, stone, and feces, to look up ahead where the main donjon of the new castle stood proud in the distance near the harbor: Lindwurm Keep. It was a magnificent side for all the squalor and grimness of the port town’s city center, a shining beacon for the future yet to come. If it was to come at all. It was why Voigt had no idea why the leadership had called for him at this point. Every moment away from his papers, reports, and charts was a moment the city wasn’t growing, a moment the realm was in danger of running out of money, and other hyperbolic statements he was currently preparing to throw at their lordships’ faces if it was another meeting about the gentry and merchants complaining about the new zoning laws.
The walk to the magnificent Keep took Voigt another twenty minutes in which both his boots had been cleaned by the rough streets, and his temper had cooled once again. As he approached the guards at the main gate, he was glad to see at least some of the troops had been issued with the new flintlock muskets from the Helgoland mission. They stood at attention as he passed, hiding his smile under his broad feathered hat. Last time they had asked for papers as they had not been informed that Voigt had followed the current trend of appearing clean-shaven before court. That had been fun for at least one party involved.
He was quickly ushered in through the gates and up through the several staircases, side doors, hallways, more doors, more staircases, and the grand hall itself, brightly lit at all times, as servants walked around with baby wyverns and candles in one hand and a bucket of sand in the other. What a marvelous modern age it truly was.
The footmen saw Voigt approaching from over a hundred meters away, but waited until the last moments to turn, knock, and then open the doors just as he nose came into reach, shouting: “His lordship, Hermann Freiherr Voigt, Deputy Vice Chancellor to his Majesty Leopold…”
“In, Goddammit, in with him!” Continue reading “Tales from the Bin: Pariah Company (Part 1)”