|Moreaugarin's Crusade (standard:science fiction, 4322 words)|
|Author: bufnila ovidiu||Added: Mar 28 2003||Views/Reads: 2843/1270||Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)|
|Ibhib the Gunner of Longville stormed me up from my den. He had scored about the catacombs of Beauburg for the best part of a week|
MOREAUGARIN'S CRUSADE Ovidiu Bufnila Ibhib the Gunner of Longville stormed me up from my den. He had scored about the catacombs of Beauburg for the best part of a week. He wanted to know my whereabouts so he had inquired left and right. He made then a spectacle of himself and came to blows with a couple of batmen. He did them in; he did, and drank their blood. The fickle bastard! Then he took his time walking along the banks of the underground river and had a fling with the swarthy broad Brunhilde. He had a mouthful of her tits and gave her such a hell of a thrashing that she hollered till there were cracks in the vaults of the galleries where the stiffs lay dormant. I surely followed Ibhib with my feelers. I couldn't trust scoundrels like him. I hadn't seen him ever since Moreaugarin had given us the slip. The Gunner had not changed a bit. Maybe his belly heaved a little over the belt. A flimsy haze shimmered over his eyes. The scales on his strong chest seemed to have become rusty in some places. And his joints creaked, poor wretch! Well, the old space hound's luck was running thin... When I had heard the clang of his iron scales I put out the torches in a hurry. Killed the engines. Pulled out my own iron from my chest. They I lay in wait. “Freeze where you are!” I screamed my lungs out. Ibhib sneered, baring the silver spades of his teeth, and croaked something. I didn't believe him. His nostrils were flaring. His chest was heaving. He rolled his eyes. His soul seemed to carry a heavy burden. The bastard! Through a crack in his shoulder I saw the muzzle of his gun... It's useless to wait. I fired a volley. The peeling walls resounded. The echo of the boom rolled to the surface and died in the tubular streets of Beauburg. The Gunner? Hah, hah! Mealy-mouthed bastard! He played that dirty trick of his. Caught all the bullets between his silver teeth and spat them back at my head. I extended my hairy paw of a hand and Ibhib rushed out of the dark and hugged me, roaring with glee. I thought he would break my spine. He was carrying his age well, the bum! “Well, Max! Aren't you getting moldy in this place?” Ibhib asked flapping his drooling lips. “Nope, not yet,” I said with a chuckle. “When then?” “Well?” “And how' s the racket coming?” “Stop ranting, you stinker. You'd better tell me your business here. What's the big idea?” “Well, are you up in dough?” the Gunner asked and scratched behind his flagging ear. “No, I'm rather hard up. Not even two nickels to rub together.” “I've got a job for you.” “Spit it out, don't keep me guessing.” I said and whisked out a bottle of hard stuff from my cache. “I met Moreaugarin.” Well, that topped it all! That addled-brained scholar? Was that the reason for Ibhib's coming thither and scouring the catacombs? Fat chance, old man. “Go look somewhere else”, I snapped at him. “We should have slashed Moreaugarin's throat when we had the chance! The cheat said he'd give us a lot of money. We sweated our guts out on Mars. We worked ourselves to death combing the QET Galaxy in search of that shitty toad with silicon brains. The one who had stolen planet Earth to add it to his collection. We ended up empty-handed. When we finished the job, that groveling son of a bitch, Moreaugarin came and said that he had found immortality and could be reborn from a single drop of blood or from his own footprint, even if it were one hundred years old. I know what these end-of-the-century scholars are up to, Gunner. They'd like to give us the go-by.” “Now, what can I say? The man said this time we're sure to hit the jackpot. Ever heard of ancient-light diamonds?” “Some rumors, yes,” I said and rubbed my hands. “What about them?” “Well, this Moreaugarin claims he knows where they can be found.” “Don't be so bloody stupid! An amphibian from B'ol Solar system told me that these diamonds are far beyond the edge of the cosmos, about fifteen thousand light years away. What then?” “Listen, Max, this is the set-up. Moreaugarin showed me one of those stones and guess what. I took it to the jeweler's at Grazzelli's in Blue city. Cuts quite a figure in his field, you know. Well, he says the stone is genuine. Then he takes a gun from a drawer and says he will prove it...” “Well?” “Well, he puts a slug through his head! Moreaugarin and I get splattered all over with his blood and brains. And then Grazzelli comes to life. Moreaugarin just touches his body with that stone and...” “You're a goddamn liar”. “No, I'm not! And look, that's all there's to it!” “You're trying to piss me. Shoot it”. “The other thing is, Moreaugarin said that Pilgrims arrived in some spot on the Earth...” “Big deal. I heard that one from a sea-devil!” This is an age-old story. One million years ago these Pilgrims destroyed civilization on Venus. By treason, perjury and crime. Pilgrims were sonorous beings born from the primeval sound of the Universe. They carried the walls of the Ideal City beneath their Click here to read the rest of this story (273 more lines)
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