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Saturday, July 3, 2010

DRAGGER VS. PELTOPS


brothers separated at birth...

o holy throne... ;>>

~W~

Peltops' ship was small, for a cruiser, and decorated only sparely. It seemed as if a weary but purposeful hand had swept cables unconsciously into a spiral, lined up storage bins, attached small memorandum-phials for the techpriests...

This was the vigilance of Peltops of the Half-Closed Eyes, the warrior-librarian who was the leader of these thousands of men, and these proud but few Marines...

Peltops the Harsh, Peltops the rough Bond-Brother whom they all loved, as he moved among them with the dire gravity of plutonium.

Goldi thought darkly as he authenticated the holo-plate for an administrat-menial: Peltops, no longer Epistolary, not in any official sense, a radical, a nightrunner suspected of being animistic and a user of totems...

Peltops, bold, blood-disgraced brother to Dragger the Fiend, Dragger the Dissolute, Dragger the cackling thief of worlds, of whole futures...

Of sanity...

To pit brother against brother would be a necessary atrocity.

~W~

He moves just like Dragger, thinks Goldi with a pang of psychic vertigo. The same deliberate, timed, sweeping gestures, only Peltops is pent, conservative, controlled, possessing none of Dragger's maniac pomp. His gestures are simple, powerful. He would condemn a murderer with a wave of the hand conferring dignity.

Peltops mumbles and ticks his gloved fingers over a small spill of pebbles, gems and bone pieces, dashed out on a small column-table. Goldi's electric eyes detect potent swathes of energy so concentrated as to be nearly tangible in his gut.

Then the hooded eyes rise from divination to utterly transfix him...

So startling. Almost the gaze of a primarch. Goldi folds his gauntleted hands and stands easily, waiting for the librarian-shaman to broach the silence. A breath invades, and then growls sweetly out of the coaly-haired creature's lungs, and Goldi feels a feeling of fear arise to his metallic throat, then recede. As the coaly hairs on Peltops' head had stood and fallen almost imperceptibly.

Impossible!!

"How are you getting around." crackles a voice from between dry lips.

Goldi replies curtly, "That is my business."

"You have been long in warp transit."

Goldi simply nods. Why ask inane questions?

"It has been six hundred years since I have thought seriously of Wolfram," says Peltops. "When I was young and undertook my journey to the Librarius, Draeger was little more than a dapper fixer with pretension of an officer..." Peltops bristles and then subsides, assuming a matter-of-fact expression. "How much he must have changed." He smiles wearily and prods at the stones.

"Much changed," growls Goldi in fey sympathy. He takes a tinny breath as the oppressive energy flows swiftly from the room, draining away into some arcane reserve...

... as for better or worse, the creature Peltops, this elemental, smiles at him with a plain face of comeradeship...

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