The Assignment

Captain Von Delgo is a man who is lost. He is known as a turncoat, a hero and a mass-murderer. He has no beginning, and as far as he can see he has no end. Which makes him just about the most dangerous man alive. After the completion of his last job Captain is on his way out to receive his payment and rest up. His plans are delayed when a religious sect known as the Ravens pull him in with an offer. Captain faces a dilemma, he has never once failed in his assignments. But accepting this one and succeeding would change the way of the world, change everything that everyone has ever known, plunge it into chaos. But he has also never once turned down a job, and with his life quickly descending into a chaos of its own despair, he can see no reason why not to accept. After all, how hard can it be to kill an immortal?

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11. Chapter 11

Gháuld's, or Ghoul's, depending upon who you are and what your reason is for calling them whichever one you call them, are a group of cannibalistic creatures living on Dead Drop Island.

Death Drop Island, so named for the first part of its name because almost everything on the island besides the Gháulds is dead. It is also named for the second part because it is the only island that overhangs the very edge of Gamdagleeare Luff. The island is separated into two halves by a giant mountain range that runs in a zigzag pattern through the very middle of it. The highest peak of the mountain reaches about 30,000 feet, and depending on where the island is, and its time of year, it is covered in snow. Not the normal soft snow, but hard snow.

Lush jungles full of wild animals, ruins of lost, forgotten temples and buildings are found on the southern side of the island, along the bottom of the mountains running down to the beach where it ends just as the sand ends coming up from the water. The northern side of the island, on the opposite side of the mountains, is full of old cities, built and then in time crumbling into ruins and now a hunting ground for the Gháuld’s.

Huge metal fences ran, and still do run, around the outside of the dead cities. The gates were built to keep the creatures out. However, what the builders forgot to think is, what about the creatures that already live inside? The fences cross over rocky ground and flat planes. Five meters high and then topped with barbed wire, the entire thing electric. Positioned deep underneath the main city are control rooms for the massive gates. The gates were positioned so that by walking through one gate would simply lead you into another safe city. The fences along the back of the cities stop just before the mountain, and stop a few miles from the sandy beach.

A long time ago there used to be a port along the water where the supple ships used to come in and dock. To get to it you have to brave the open ground between them. Armoured convoys would drive between those parts to keep the creatures away. The armoured guards would check anything entering the main part of the port, whether it is by ship or by some other vehicle by land thoroughly. It was the same for entering the city.

Stealth is required to move unseen on this island if you wish to survive. The Gháuld’s have a keen sense of hearing and eyes that have learnt to see well in both the light and the night. It is easier to walk rather than use a moving vehicle, though no one would ever dare walk on the island for the limited amount of protection to be had by doing so. But as a vehicle can become stuck and end up placing you as a sitting duck while you try to fix it, walking is a little better. Secret passes drilled straight through the mountain, if you can find them, allow you easier travelling’s if you end up on the island. What you have to ask yourself if you find the tunnels is are the people who thought them up still alive, and did they turn?

The creatures that inhabit the island, the Gháuld’s, are the only things that live on the island long enough to know where everything is. Mainly, of course, because they ate everything else that moved, including themselves if they could find nothing else to satisfy their desire for flesh.

Through various combats and fights for food they have all sustained horrible scaring, not just in hunting for food but scaring for fun. Their bodies are a mass of black tattoos in swirls around their bodies. Their teeth sharpened to points to help them achieve efficiency in tearing flesh from wiggling bodies.

They are about man shape and size. The males measuring in size at 6 ft, and the females at 7. With black eyes that appear glow in the dark, placed against white faces with high cheekbones and thin red lips, their faces place them apart from other creatures that live. They wear cloths wrapped around their waists, and go bare foot. They do not need to carry any weapons, for their enormous strength in their arms are enough to tear a body in half. On top of that, they are exceedingly fast at running and jumping.

They have camps set up all around the island. Some are even up in the mountains, so that when something comes crawling along the passes to get to the other side they can catch it. Their camps are made up of the wood of trees in the jungle to make huts. Some of them are even made of giant leaves that grow on Hlis Trees. The Gháuld’s are normally found in tribes of fifty. If you are hiding and you see a single Gháuld on its own and looking to be hurt, don't even show yourself to help it. The moment you appear in its sight, you are a dead creature. It will change from looking like it is hurt to sitting on your stomach while biting your head off. If you’re unlucky it will switch positions. It’s almost better to never fight a Gháuld, but if you have to then fight it far away with a fast gun.

The Gháuld’s were once normal people, like the ones that lived in the Cities of Terra on the island Terino. It was just one day, one day when the day was the same as the day before and as the day it had been for a thousand years, the island moved.

The Commanders in the citadel felt the island shake one day during a conference. It was just a small shudder, like something fell over and you knew it fell over but you didn't feel anything. And then the sound came, high in pitch that drove the animals off into a furry. They broke through the gates and stampeded. After that, not many people remember. Things started to shake, the ground tore to pieces, power went out, water mains burst, houses crumbled to dust, buildings sank into sinkholes. The only one still standing, apparently untouched was the citadel tower.

On top of the towers of the citadel, the watchmen were the first people to see through the smoke and dust of the fallen city. They were the first to see through it all the water rushing by, the edge that seemed to rise out of the water like a leviathan speeding towards to swallow them whole. Throughout the whole tremor earlier no one had noticed that it had been the island breaking loose and floating along with the current that spilled off the world. The island moved so close to the edge that the watchmen were preparing for the end, there was nothing for them to do to stop it. They awaited the end calmly, tears falling gently down their cheeks as they dreamed of their loved ones. Then the island stopped.

Panic ensued. What would happen to the island? Would another shock strike and force the island off the edge into space? The citizens of the city hammered on the doors of the citadel in demand of an explanation. What were they to do? What had happened? Why had it happened? It became to be so that the Commanders began to fear for their lives. The world was stepping forward to join a riot that was strong enough to cause the island to tip without the help of a quake. They didn’t know what to do, or what to tell the people.

One man stepped forward with an idea.

'Tell them that it will happen again, and then it will happen again until we have been thrown off the edge to our deaths. Unless, unless we exile those that have gone against the laws our grandfathers set down for us to obey. Throw the evil ones outside the edge of the cities. Only once those who have defied our laws are safe outside our grand cities, only then will what has happened today never happen again. And if we ever disobey the Ancient Laws again after today, the shake will return and we will answer for our crimes.'

The Commanders praised the man for his quick thinking and issued the new law for the people. They carried off those that had done evil and banished them to the outside. Once complete the people went about cleaning and rebuilding their cities. In the chance that another shock did happen by someone breaking a law, they rebuilt the buildings with steel frames and ores that would help prevent the buildings from collapsing.

The outcasts, outcast because they did wrong, ruled the outside. They had a hatred that would burn away in the night, lighting up its black sky. They wanted to end the lives of those that had sent them outside to die.

Outside the large cities was barren ground. There was no food for them to eat, and it wasn’t long before they began to perish. After long months, they discovered a way to steal the food brought to the cities by boat from under the Commanders eyes. They would sneak out to sea at night, climb aboard the ship when the crew slept, and steal the food they needed before swimming back to shore. The next day the boat would dock and the crew would carry off it the food and other things the cities couldn't make. But for reasons they could not work out, their supplies were smaller than when they had left port back home.

They carried on in this way until the crew grew wise and started to mount guards. The guards saw them come on board and raised the alarm. What Gháuld’s, which is what they started to call themselves, that hadn't been on the boat that night survived. All the others on board died during the attack. This news, once it came back to both the ears of the Commanders and the Gháuld’s, caused an outrage on both sides.

The Commanders set up armoured convoys to take the supplies from the port to the city gates to prevent the Gháuld’s from getting it anymore. Living out in the wilderness for so long, learning how to survive against the other things that lived behind the walls of the cities, had changed the Gháuld’s way of living and the way they were. It made them stronger, more cunning, and faster than before. They began attacking the guards on duty at the gates and the men on the boats rather than the convoys.

They went mad with rage; the rage boiled over the edges and swamped the people beyond the gates. Their families were being killed and eaten by creatures that had once been them. They wanted the fight to end. The people came to the Commanders and hammered once more at their door demanding that the gates be opened up and the Gháuld’s let in to live with them once again. The Commanders did not know what to do again. Those dreadful creatures were also attacking their own sons; they too wanted the fight to end. But they remembered the quake, and they remembered the man that had stepped forwards and told them what to do. The man was no longer with them. He had packed up his belongings and left with the rest of the people they had thrown outside the gates. They did not know why he had left. He was no longer there to give them advice as to what to tell the people, or as to what they should do.

They decided that they would open the gates and let the Gháuld in, and risk the chance of another shake. What they had told the people about the shake was all a lie, though, wasn't it? They had just told the people that to get them to calm down.

The Commanders made the worst mistake of their lives by gathering the people together from all the cities to stand against the edge of the walls. Along the other side stood the Gháuld so that they could also hear what the Commanders had to say. There the Commanders told the people the truth about everything.

The people didn't believe it to start with, but as the Commanders talked they came to believe it. And the rage that burned within the Gháuld’s for the people inside the cities spread into the people of the cities. War became the thing that all creatures on the island wanted against the Commanders. Through false words and belief, their families had died for nothing.

They attacked the Commanders who locked themselves in their citadel. The Commanders called for backup to other islands to help them. Replies came swiftly and troops were sent to help reclaim the island. The People inside the cities joined the Gháuld’s and together fought as one. The island became a war zone, the war became a blood bath, and the Gháuld’s began to win. Soldiers stopped coming because they knew in their hearts that they would only be going to their deaths if they climbed on board a ship to what they now called Death Drop Island.

The Gháuld’s claimed the island as their own after they won the war and no one else came. They killed the Commanders and lived in a life of human flesh and blood. They ate the men they fought against. They littered the cities with the bones of their enemies. No one would dare go to the island for fear of being attacked and eaten by the demons that lived there. Time passed and the island was left alone to crumble into decay. Sometimes, a mad explorer would head out to explore the strange island whose history had been lost, only to be lost themselves.

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