A story of a man with a passion which gives him the tools to defend all that he holds dear.


1. Let Battle Commence

Many young boys play with toy trains. Most of them grow out of it but some pursue their interest into adulthood. They then spend many hours conducting trains on carefully put together sets in their attics. I was never into trains, I was fascinated by boats. Every time I had a bath I would end up wrinkled and cold after yet another grand battle with my fleet. This was difficult to carry into my life as an adult. I could afford much better boats but that didn't stop people laughing and throwing things at me as I played in the pond of my local park. Sadly, I had to leave my passion behind.

That was, until I won the lottery. As a millionaire it was clear what was number one on my list of things to do. I went straight to a prostitute and finally had sex. With that done, I brought a house with an Olympic sized swimming pool and a top of the range set of toy boats. It wasn't long before a local news station paid me a visit to do a feel-good story. The mayor came as well and officially confirmed my pool as a sea. My swimming pool was now classed as international waters, a silly thing perhaps, but it made my naval battles a bit more authentic in my mind.

As I lay in my boat shaped bed I dreamt peacefully. I was woken abruptly by the sound of an explosion from outside and my room was lit by an orange glow coming through the window. I looked out onto my swimming pool in horror, my entire fleet was on fire. Sitting in the middle of my pool was a small pirate ship which was manned by a laughing captain. He called up to me: 'I claim this sea as my own. You have been defeated land-lover!'

I immediately called the police and demanded that he be arrested for vandalism and trespassing on private poverty. To my dismay they refused to come as they had no jurisdiction over international waters. With my great wealth, I had plenty of spare boats so I immediately put them to action. The battle raged long and hard throughout the night. It eventually became clear that we were at a stalemate. I then joined the pirate for negotiations.

'I will never give up,' said the pirate. 'This sea will be mine.' I could see this was going nowhere. 'Perhaps there is a way we can resolve this issue?' I asked. 'Well,' he replied. 'You appear to enjoy playing with toys so why don't we settle this with a game? You and I both share a love of boats and we are in the midst of a naval battle. There is only one popular  children's game that is fitting for this situation.' 'Agreed,' I said sternly. 'I'll go fetch the hungry hippos. Jungle rules apply.'

With the hippos ready to go we went through our warm up exercises. Then we sat down ready to play. 'Why don't we raise the stakes?' Asked the pirate. 'I raise you my treasured blue sword.' It was a beautiful sword and I was intrigued by the gamble. 'I meet your raise with this!' I declared, revealing the medal placed around my neck. 'Avast!' The pirate declared. 'That's an Olympic gold medal.' 'Indeed it is,' I confidently replied. 'And I won it in the hungry hippos grand prix.' The pirate was shocked but quickly recovered. 'This won't be as easy as you think, I was a talented amateur a long time ago. Let's get this on!'

The hippos were ravenous and balls were flying everywhere. As a seasoned professional, I kept my strategy tight and was confident of the win. Finally I counted up my white balls: 23 eaten. The pirate counted slowly then looked me square in the eyes. 'I have 25 balls, the pool is mine!' I was never going to be defeated so easily so I grabbed his blue sword and held it to his neck. 'This isn't fair,' He cried. 'I won fair and square.' 'Jungle rules apply,' I countered. 'And there are no rules in the jungle.' I quickly jabbed the blue sword into the barrel the pirate was sitting on and he immediately shot up into the sky. At university I had majored in hungry hippos but I had paid for my tuition by hustling in bars with pop up pirate.

The pirate slammed down into the ground next to me and the defeated man spoke softly. 'We should have played battleships, that would have made more sense.' I had to agree he was right and it was then that I realised that we had a great deal in common. I now had someone to join in my games so I was no longer alone. My enemy became my best friend, and let me tell you something else... he was also one hell of a lover.
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