Post details: Chapter 88 - Dese Days Part One: Oranje's name makes a stirFlip the order!
Chapter 88 - Dese Days Part One: Oranje's name makes a stir
Normandy Beach was looking totally hardcore and that was before all the United Statesians showed up. Gadly and Formation's C-Gull units had spotted Oranje's megacanoe armada approaching from the West and within a few short days, what was once a skimpy little wimpy beach was teeming with Europe's most seriously best fighting guys and all the heroes who had been available at the time. Enrique the Catheart was there with his Bandit Kids, Bürgermeister
Z was barking orders and making efficiency reports all over the place, Rigor Mantis was standing up high on a rock, just waiting for it all to go down and Auroch Jones was stamping and snorting up such a cloud of fury that everyone within a five hundred metre radius of him could translate his anxiety into a pure strain of strength that made their muscles bulge and their hearts jump up against the inside of their chests three times a second. All this was happening because Commander Flightfeather, who had so been so embarrassingly off-guard when Terrorthaw's army of gypsies had stormed Brussels, had reacted immediately to the C-Gull's report and mobilised as many of Europe's military assets to Europe's West Coast well before Astrid Gimmerleck turned up at the abbey at Seine-Inférieure to advise the maire on the King's battle plans in regards to the coming invasion. She was sopping wet.
She was bustled along into the abbey's antechamber where she did not see the maire at all. She was met instead by the splendid plumage of a half-man, half-bird monster person who sat at a table fussing over some maps and troop registers. He was flanker by two dazzling and brightly-polished suits of armour each containing a handsome man with muscles rippling and jaws jutting all over the place. They glared at her with a unified arrogance that nearly knocked her to the ground. But remain upright she did and the monster person coughed, which was a signal for her to explain her presence, which was dripping all over the floor. She pulled her deactivated cloak of invisibility tight around her. “Could I have a towel, please?” she shivered. The monster person looked from his scrolls and charts, made several movements of apology with his head and neck and tweetled sweetly to the page stood by the door, who soundlessly disappeared and then reappeared with a towel, which he handed to Astrid. The towel was thick and warm and so absorbent and didn't get all scratchy when dealing with salt water. It was a towel +2 and had belonged to the King's great-grandfather and had a name any everything, but nobody knew that. As far as everyone was concerned, it just happened to be the best towel in the abbey. Astrid was dry and clean and happy within moments. The bird monster and the two fistfuls of hunk watched her and the tension mounted. Everyone wanted to know what she was going to say!
“Are you with that -fleet- out there?” snapped one of the suits of armour.
“We consider their very presence to be a hostile act against Europe. We will burn them from the seas,” said the other, excited by the first's snap.
“Who are you, woman, anyway?” said the first. The two of them were totally playing off each other, getting encouragement and new ideas whenever they heard the other speak. They could go on all day like this.
“You look like a Viking-wife.”
“Have the Vikings returned to retake Normandy?”
“Have they? Eh?”
“How dare you! This is Europe!”
“We fight with the might and the ferocity of our King!”
“Perhaps you've heard of him, hmm?”
“He would crush you, little Viking-wife.”
“He could crush everyone in this room!”
“With one scream!”
“He will crush your silly little fleet too.”
“With one scream!”
“The King is on that silly little fleet!” shouted Astrid. She was quite cross. There were a lot of warrior blowhards in Vikinca society, so this sort of treatment wasn't entirely unknown to her, but since most of her life had been spent nosing around ruin and lost cities of gold, hacking through jungles, fighting off exotic diseases with a spade and bargaining with curses, far away from most people and especially from pumped-up braggarts of the likes of these two snap-heads. She had assumed that European warriors would be charmingly folksy and humble like her beloved Axe Axewound. Oh, how she missed him. She hoped that he was okay in that coffee tin.
“So... we are not being attacked?” said one of the suits of armour, folding and unfolding his arms with a bit of difficulty.
“We must refit this repulsion force to a welcoming force, Commander! The King will be so pleased to see us!” said the other to the bird-monster, who remaining sceptical.
“No, you're still getting attacked,” said Astrid, a little pleased to be telling them that.
“How is that possible!”
“Has the King turned evil?” they went.
“The King -can't- turn evil,” intoned the bird man. “It's been proven.” He was right about that. Many had tried to turn the King evil through magic or hypnosis or drugs or by fostering an addiction to computer games, but it had never worked. The King either resisted outright, shook it off as soon as he was forced to do something actually evil, or would turn out to just be pretending in order to get the villain who had turned him to let their guard down.
“The King is on a mega... – a boat in the fleet but he is not in control of it,” said Astrid carefully. “Oranje is in control of it.” she said this to Commander Flightfeather directly and the words hit him right between the eyes. Jacob Hillmounter and Timothy Clashradish had told him about Oranje's tricky tricks on the Moon and in Romania, and the reality of her being there, closing in on Normandy, could mean only one thing. He turned to Jacob at his side and in that long instant of panic, there were no qualms between them over who was in charge.
“Summon everyone,” said Commander Flightfeather. “Everyone you can – she must not reach the tower.” Jacob nodded, but did not understand. Timothy nodded too and looked over at Jacob. What was so important about the -tower- of all places? They left without a word to marshal the forces of Europe. Astrid was left alone with Commander Flightfeather. He was quiet, withdrawn.
“What will the King have us do?” he asked.
She told him everything.
End Of Chapter 88