Font size : - +


Another chapter for the trolls to down-vote
I moved to the door and stood beside it. I was just reaching for the knob when a voice called out from the hallway. “You might as well come out, Drake. I can see you just fine with the thermoscanner.” The voice left a cold shiver down my spine. It was Dundal.

I moved away from the door. I had to figure out how to get out of here, but I was trapped. Out the window were battledroids. In the hallway was an ambush.

“Uncle Drake! Don’t come out!” It was Cleo’s voice. It was followed by her scream of pain.

“Yes, Uncle Drake, don’t come out,” Dundal mocked. “I have a gun pointed at her pretty little head. I am going to count down from ten, then I pull the trigger. Ten… Nine…”

He made it to six before I opened the door. “I am coming out.”

I stepped into the hall and breathed a sigh of relief. There were no battledroids there. They must be outside only. Then a chill ran down my spine. Cleo and her intended were on their knees in front of Dundal. Dundal had a rail pistol in each hand, and they were pointed at his prisoner’s heads.

“Come forward one step, and start removing your weapons and clothes,” Dundal said, as he poked the pistols into the heads of the people before him.

I had no choice. I was stuck. I stepped forward and started to remove my weapons. I tried to palm a throwing knife, but Dundal saw it, so I dropped it quickly.

“Now, have that pretty little piece of ass in your room come out.” As he spoke, he nodded his head towards the door. That was his mistake. The instantaneous break of eye contact was not enough for me to move. But Lizell surprised us both. She stepped out of the door with the pistol leveled and pulled the trigger.

Dundal spun as the bullet ripped through his shoulder. Cleo sprung like a bear trap and used her body to knock Makeal over and away. I dropped down and tried to retrieve a weapon.

By the time I stood, Dundal was running down the hall cursing. I had to stop him before the battledroids could be called in.

I took off after Dundal. All I had was a pistol with one twenty-round magazine and a vibe knife with a five minute charge life. The first explosions started outside as the Praetorian Guard arrived. The battledroids had something to fight. That removed them from my worry list. As we moved deeper into the palace, I found a couple of the night guards. They had been gassed. The bedrooms all had separated filter systems, and the main part of the house was on its own system. Dundal had found a vulnerability.

This damn palace had no straight hallways. We had designed it that way on purpose. Now I was pissed about it. I knew where he was headed. He was headed towards the garage.

I followed as fast as I could, but he was always one turn ahead of me.

I burst into the garage just as he went out the top on a hoverbike. I did not pause to think. I ran for Daniel’s section of the garage. There it was, Daniel’s new racing bike.

I had to hope he copied the identity profile from his older ones. I was in luck and it started as soon as I touched the pad. I was flying after Dundal seven seconds after he had flown out.

As I came out of the top of the garage, I saw him speeding off to the north. I followed and opened the bike up to its maximum. This baby was fast.

I was only twenty feet behind him when he fired his first shot. The bullet grazed my wind deflector and spun off into the night. I started to weave the bike. This was a new chase for me. For the first time in my life I was involved in a chase and the other guy was wounded.

I raised my pistol and tried to aim. Have you ever tried to aim at a target while you and the target are traveling at over three hundred KPH, and both are weaving? Trust me, it is not easy. I started to time his weaving and then I pulled the trigger. Later in my life I would brag about that shot. I would claim it was pure skill that sent that round on its path. I will tell you now, it was pure fucking luck.

The round sped out at ten times the speed of sound. Its path carried it straight into the tail pipe of the bike in front of me. With a crack like the end of the world, it slammed into the main force rotor in the engine.

Dundal’s bike started to shake and vibrate. The gauges started to cry out their warnings. Dundal managed to hit the eject button just as the bike came apart beneath him.

I banked into a long turn and started to come back around. Dundal hung from his airfoil with his weapon pointed at me. One way or another, this would end tonight. We were still eight hundred meters above the ground when the bullet slammed through my windscreen and into my left shoulder.

My right hand snapped forward and the vibe knife came to life as it flew from my hand. Two of the ropes from his airfoil suddenly twanged and his foil started to collapse. My bike started to spin. I hit the eject button as Dundal started to plummet to the ground.

My airfoil opened and I looked down. I was just in time to see Dundal pass through the tops of the trees below. He had been traveling at near terminal velocity.

I controlled my decent as best I could using only my right hand. My left arm was not responding at all. The wound to my shoulder had blood pouring down in a rain below me.

I managed to land in a small clearing just a hundred meters away from the place Dundal had entered the forest. I stood up and pulled my shirt off. Then I used it to bind and put pressure on my wounded shoulder. Once I had slowed the loss of blood, I started to walk towards Dundal’s landing site.

I found him just as the patrol shuttles started to arrive. He was about three feet off the ground with a broken off limb stuck through his lower chest. He looked at me and tried to raise his pistol. The effort was too much.

I stepped up to him hanging there and looked into his eyes. “I hope the doctors can save you. That way I will get the pleasure of executing you.”

He died with my eyes the last thing he could see.

“Sir, we need a status report,” a voice said from behind me.

“Status code white. Get me the fuck out of here!”

The flight back to the palace was bumpy. The pilot was new to the base and kept looking back to see me. I was sitting on the edge of the door with my feet hanging out. I had my shirt bound around my shoulder. And above all else, I looked pissed.

I dropped to the ground before the shuttle could land completely. I started to walk towards the palace. On the ground in front of me, a battledroid was severely damaged. It tried to point its weapon at me. I shot it through the brainpan without comment.

As I stepped to the front door, I put my hand on the recognition plate a soldier held out. Their sniffer went off like an alarm clock. I was covered in dust and particles that registered as explosives.

“Sir, we need to get you to a decontamination shower.”

“I have to check on the emperor.”

“Sir, the emperor’s door is sealed and he will not open it.”

“Good, what is the status of the crown princess?”

“She is in your room with the lady Lizell and Makeal. They all have guns pointed down the hallway and are refusing to let anyone approach.”

I smiled to myself. “Let’s go get me decontaminated.” I turned and walked back towards the shuttle. I was taken to the base hospital where I was subject to a rather embarrassing decontamination shower. Then a doctor insisted on working on my shoulder. The wound was a through and through and it would just take some time to heal. He placed a dermal regeneration bandage on it and then declared me free to leave.

It had been six hours since I left the palace.

“Status, Grand Marshal,” I said to Angel as I walked up.

“The palace grounds are secure. The royal family and guests are in the dining area waiting for you. I am under orders from Prince Drake, to bring his unca to him as soon as you get here.”

“Then by all means, lead on.”

I was led to the dining room where, my family was sitting and drinking coffee. Little Drake was the first one to see me.

“Unca Drake!”, he yelled, and came running towards me. I caught him with my left arm as he leaped into the air. I quickly regretted it.

“You need to learn how to not get shot at,” Robert said with a smile. “I expected a report from you a couple hours ago.”

“My apologies, your majesty, I was detained by a decontamination shower and a doctor who thought my wound needed treatment.”

Robert chuckled.

I tuned to face Daniel. “I am afraid I was compelled to test drive your new racing bike, your highness. It performed very well until it exploded from a spin out. Those Hybold engines never could stand excessive contra G-forces. I owe you a new bike.”

“Did you get the bastard?”, Daniel asked, getting a look from his mother due to his language.

“Yes, your highness, Daria’s headman sends his regrets but he will no longer be able to attend any functions of any kind.”

“Good! We can call it even on the bike then.”

“You are gracious, your highness.”

“You can give us all the lurid details later,” Robert said, motioning me to my seat. “Breakfast should be out soon.”

I sat down in my seat next to Lizell. “I think I am going to skip exercises this morning. For some reason, I am tired.”

My family started to laugh.

Robert motioned for Angel to join us and things started to drift towards normal again.


It took a few days to figure out how he had gotten into the palace with the battledroids. There had been a delivery truck parked on the street. The droids had been inside it. The truck was parked next to the imperial storage warehouse. There were always trucks there, so it had not drawn attention.

Dundal had come in with a maintenance crew to work on the security shields. Since he had not been in the palace proper he was allowed to work under observation. The crew had gone into the underground access tunnels to work. While they were down there, the guards changed shift. The new guard had not been given a body count of how many men went into the tunnel, so when only eight came out, he had not noticed that fewer men came out than had entered.

The eight men on the maintenance crew had been paid a lot of money to look the other way. It cost them badly in the end. The company they worked for lost its contract. When the word got out a security company lost its contract with the palace due to lack of security… Well let’s just say the company was sold off a few days later.

Dundal had planted the sleep-gas bomb in the main air intake. The men recovered and a change in policy was implemented. Nose filters became a standard part of the guard uniform.

When the gas had been distributed throughout the main palace, Dundal had used a servant’s access to get into the building. These were normally left unsecured because of the security for the main part of the house. That changed also.

The rest is pretty self-explanatory.

I was sitting in Roberts’s office going over military reports with him. “The ten-twenty-one is in travel to my ducal palace. They are to secure and analyze the palace. I have sent out the order for the imperial seizure of all properties and assets of the former grand duchess. They are to be turned over to me by the end of the month.”

“Have you set a date yet?”

“Robert, you need to keep your mind on business.”

“This is business. I am going to be spending a lot of money on an imperial wedding.”

“Why would this be an imperial wedding?”

“I was talking with Lizell. You know it is tradition for the father of the bride to pay for the wedding, of course. I found out her father is not exactly well off. He is an accounting clerk for a small mom and pop store. They would not be able to spend more than a couple thousand credits on the wedding. Lizell was trying to plan around that budget. She was even going to add her savings to it to make it her dream wedding.”

“I understood that. I wanted to marry her. The size of the wedding is not important to me.”

“It is to a woman, Drake. I stepped in and offered to help. At first she refused, but I blackmailed her into acceptance. I am paying for the wedding.”

“You blackmailed her?”

“I know something about your wife-to-be that you don’t. She is trying to keep it secret. I used this information ruthlessly.”

“What do you know?”

“If I told you, it would not be good blackmail information. I would suggest you set the date soon though, or everyone is going to know.”

I continued my report as I digested this information. How would everyone know? What could she possibly be hiding? The only thing that would become obvious to everyone was a physical change of some kind… I stopped talking and looked at the emperor. My eyes had grown to the size of dinner plates.

“I didn’t tell you a thing. I would suggest you set the date for the next couple of months though.”

“Why hasn’t she told me?”

“I am not sure, but I think she is afraid you will feel she is trying to trap you.”

“That is ridiculous. I asked her to marry me before she became pregnant.”

“That may be a bit blurry. The medical report set the date of conception as about a week before you asked. I would not have even known about it if Asta had not seen her reading the report.”

I was a confused ball of emotions. Why hadn’t she trusted me? Had I done something to betray her trust? I continued my morning briefing with the emperor, but he could tell my mind was elsewhere.

“Drake, you go talk to her. I will read the report and contact you if I have any questions.”

I nodded and left the room. I walked quietly through the halls. I absently returned the salutes I received. I was thinking about making salutes against the rules. I think the lower officers would rebel though. They ate that shit up. I had been receiving salutes for so long they had become tiresome.

I made it back to the quarters we shared in the palace. I opened the door to find Lizell sitting at the desk looking at some photos the royal family had given her. She had threatened to frame the ones of me in a bathing suit while on guard duty. She said I even made a bathing suit look like a uniform.

She looked up to greet me and the look on my face made her stop. The words died on her lips. “What’s wrong, Drake?”

I moved across the room to her and put my arms around her. Then I turned her so her back was to my chest. I leaned down and kissed her lightly on the neck, then I whispered to her. “Why didn’t you tell me?”

I felt her tense against my chest as she tried to hide her reactions.

“Did you fear I would not want you anymore? Have I given you the impression I would not be happy?” I was confused. She knew I wanted a family.

“Drake, I wasn’t sure how you would react. I know you wanted a family but we had never discussed a time to start. I was afraid you would not be ready yet. There is also the matter of my parents. If they find out I am pregnant before I get married they will throw a fit. They are very old-fashioned in that regard.”

“My love, I want to have a family with you. I want children of our own and a life to come home to. Please don’t ever hide anything from me.”

She turned to face me. Her eyes were full of tears. “What are we going to tell my parents?”

“We are not going to tell them anything. You are only two weeks along now. I will send an imperial liner for them and we will have the ceremony as soon as they arrive. In a week you will be my wife.”

She smiled. “That does not leave a lot of time to plan the wedding.”

“Then I suggest you get Asta and Cleo fired up. Operation Nuptials just went into full-rush status.”

“Only you could make a wedding sound like a military exercise.”


2018-06-19 15:25:34
you posted yet one more chapter that mirrors one of Kenneth Hammond Stories posted before this one damn right im gonna down vote steel other peoples work

Anonymous readerReport 

2016-01-28 02:38:38
He has a few books published, in fact the returning was pulled from here at the publisher's request.

Anonymous readerReport 

2014-12-02 02:58:54
Dido! I also do agree with all the rest of your good readers.

Anonymous readerReport 

2014-11-26 13:06:43
I have been reading a lot of the texts you have posted on this website and I believe you have an uncommon gift for writing. You obviously put time and thought into these stories. I've been trying to find where you contradict yourself on information throughout chapters and the closest thing I found is where he accepts Lizell's parents without hesitation. I think you should seriously consider trying to get something published.

Anonymous readerReport 

2014-11-26 05:43:46
You should really consider writing a novel, of course without the explicit sex in it ;)

You are not logged in.
Characters count: