Monday, April 28, 2014

Scout's Duty - Chapter 88

Scout's Honor, the first book in the Scout series, is now available as an ebook from Amazon for the low price of $1.99!  Click the title to buy it.
< Chapter 87                                                                                                   Chapter 89 >
Chapman tumbles toward the pirate captains, once again trying to warn them of the danger in their midst!

I wanted to grab the knife floating close by -- which would have given me three of the four in the arena -- but shutting Chapman up was far more important.  Tensing my legs beneath me, I shoved off hard toward Chapman.  I was tired of dealing with this loathsome excuse for a man and his cowardly attempts to ingratiate himself with the pirates.

With anger written on my face and a knife clutched in each hand, I must have looked like death incarnate falling toward Chapman.  His voice rose to such a shrill tone that it pierced the roar of the crowd.  But his warning cries had been reduced to shrieks of, "He's going to kill me!  Help!"

The pirate captains heard his cries, as did most of the pirates watching.  They all roared with laughter at this unexpected addition to the usual drama of the arena.

I glanced at the others in the captains' box.   Megan, remembering our script, was shouting in Mordanian about Martin's most recent bet.  Callan had stepped to the back wall of the box, out of the way if a fight broke out, and drawn Megan along with her.  Hand lightly resting on his sword hilt, Martin had moved close to Quint.  Rupor met my gaze and slowly shook his head; tacit agreement that Chapman could not be saved from himself.  Then Rupor stepped as far from Martin as the box would allow.

Turning my attention back to Chapman, I was surprised to see he'd managed to stop tumbling and was now mere feet from the captains' box.  He was still screeching in a higher pitch than a man his size should ever be able to reach but he had changed his tune again.

"They're not pirates!  They're scouts!  It's a trap!"

This time, Chapman was too close and his voice was too piercing for it to be ignored.  As the words got through to Quint, his laughter faded.  Concentration sharpened his features and Quint's eyes shot about the box, noting everyone's position.  The other captains were just starting to take notice of Chapman's words when I caught up with him.

Putting a knife-wielding hand on the back of his head, I drove it hard into one of the bars in front of the captains' box.  Chapman went limp as his head bounced off the bar with a dull thud.

I swung my arms up and caught a cross bar on bent wrists.  Tucking, I swung around the cross bar and between the two side bars.  Gravity returned as I landed inside the captains' box.

Knives held ready, I straightened before the startled captains.  Once again the watching pirates had fallen silent at yet another unexpected development in their entertainment.  When I spoke, my voice carried throughout the arena.

"I am David Rice, Scout First Class of the Terran Exploration Corps.  Surrender or die!”

Can our heroes win free of the pirate captains and get back to their spaceship?  Find out more in Chapter 89, coming Wednesday!