Typhus: Sounds like an interesting book, I love history to no end, particularly the darker stuff, much like Vlad. He was a prisoner of the Turks as a boy wasn't he? As I recall he grew up being sodomized in a Turkish dungeon, part of the reason he hated the Turks so much, along with the rest of Europe at the time.
Is it cool to put a little short story here? Didn't think it was worthy of a full topic.
This is a little piece inspired by the brilliant book "Samurai William", by Giles Milton , which I'm currently reading. The book takes an accurate and lively look at some of the first explorers to the mysterious land of Japan, in the early 17th century. Anywat, here's a little story I wrote, feedback would be much appreciated.
The air hung heavy and thick with the smoke from small scented sticks which burned slowly in ornate bowls. Small, round faced men sat in two rows down the middle of the cavernous hall. They were a peculiar sight, small and dainty with strange hair which was shaved all over, apart from a tight, greasy knot at the back which could hang to their waists. They wore elegant silks in a rainbow of colours, many decorated with small intricate patterns of birds or flowers.
As the ragged sailors entered the hall, the men turned their attention from their prayers to the stinking foreigners that had just entered. They reacted with disgust, covering their noses and averting their eyes, the sailors thought this conduct to be flowery and rude, not understanding the deep nuances of Japanese etiquette.
The hall was grand and ancient, a high curved roof hung small lanterns of burning oils, the Japanese loving their various fragrances. Huge skins of unknown beasts lay on the floors, covered with small, intricately designed cushions. A fair young woman sat, plucking a small harp like instrument, creating a haunting, mysterious noise which echoed round the great hall.
In the center of the room sat a large, pompous looking man, a long bone pipe hanging from his lips. He twirled his long beard as the sailors walked towards him, staring blankly as they stood confused before him, a servant by the man bowed forward, gesturing for the to do the same, they did so in an awkward fashion, recieving a disgruntled nod from the huge man. The leader of the sailors, a ragged Englishman named Jonah Smithy, pulled a small box of gold from his coat, meant as a gift for the lord of this strange land. He stared at the sailors, much to their discomfort, before putting out his hand to show his rejection of the gift. At this, two men in long robes emerged from the doorway, long curved blades in hand, they advanced on the sailors and one lunged towards Smithy with his saber, only to receive a blast in the gut from the pistol concealed in his pocket.
Panic reigned as white smoke filled the room, people screamed and scrambled for the exit, others prayed to their gods for protection. The lord sat mumbling and terrified in his throne, astonished by the savagery of the small wooden weapon. Smithy realized they had never seen such a weapon, and waved it at the other swordsman, regardless of the fact it was now unloaded. Shaking, the old man raised himself from his seat, stared for length at his face, then, reluctantly, bowed before him.
Edited by brownbear, 14 April 2013 - 02:00 AM.