Chapter 1

Chapter 1

A Chapter by Unwelcomeguest

Rumour has it that God doesn’t play dice. Jack didn’t know about the others but as an entity of luck he felt it was practically his duty to . He threw another triple six and smiled winningly at the other players.

“You’re cheating” growled a man so big the arms of his chair where bowed out in order to accommodate him.

“Really? These are your dice” said Jack without looking up as he pocketed his winnings.

“I don’t care bloody how but you’re cheating” . Jack reached out for a stray coin but a knife came down and buried itself in the wood between his spread fingers. He stopped. No one else on the table was speaking but the big one had essentially expressed the feeling of the entire group. These weren't men of words, they were men of action. The kind of action, Jack thought as he smiled again and carefully extricated his hand from the vicinity of the knife, that resulted in limbs being found in plastic bags and floating on the tide.

“It appears  I should be going,” said Jack, he went to get up but stopped when something clicked against his head. It wasn’t a very big noise, but it was the kind of sound that gets louder and more important when it’s pointed in your direction. Through his hair Jack could feel the cold of the barrel pressing into his skull.

“Ah” he said.

“Sit down”.

Jack’s mouth had gone dry. He had already turned three of the seven bullets in the chamber to duds and if he managed to get a meter away none of the live ones would hit anyway but the point, the really key point, was that he would be three bullets past dead before he managed to get even a centimetre. Jack sat down.

“Look guys I’m just lucky” he said, trying to gesture in with his arms in a way that was both friendly and small enough to not encourage any happy trigger fingers.

“Don’t look so lucky right now,” said a wit in the dark. The others laughed and Jack laughed too.

“How about I give you lovely gentlemen your money back and we say no more about this, hey? No need to do anything to hasty is there?” said Jack, despite his best efforts the last words came out pleading.

“We don’t like cheaters” said the big man pulling his knife out of the table with very little apparent effort. Jack noticed it had gone nearly an inch into solid wood.

“Neither do I, sneaky little b******s aren’t they?” he said, but now he was just talking so he didn’t start screaming.

The man behind him who had produced the gun moved it away. For a second Jack though he could make a run for it but then a palm gripped his hair and rammed him face first into the tabletop, breaking his nose in the process quite spectacularly.

“The thing about cheaters is,” said the big man, leaning forward threateningly so that Jack was suddenly submerged in waves of BO, “The thing is, we don’t like them so much we kill all the ones we find.”

“Good policy” Jack said into the blood soaked wood.

“We don’t listen to them when they try and talk their way out of it” The other people around the table were standing up with grins edging carefully across their craggy faces. Jack swore. He’d been around for millennia and he was going to get torn apart by a few thugs after a game of dice. He sighed. He didn’t really have much choice; he could explain it to the others later. There was no way he could get to a labyrinth entrance before they got him. What was the point in being a God if you didn’t get the occasional miracle or two?

He concentrated.

A wave of pure force slammed into the men and sent them hurtling back into the wall. Jack noted with satisfaction that a few of them didn’t get up afterewards. The rest all pulled various weapons from leather clothing and charged suicidaly forward in a way that medieval knights would’ve been proud of. The man with the gun held back waving his arm wildly, trying to get a clear shot as Jack moved amongst his mates like a concentrated ball of the pain. Jack’s fists blurred and another man went down permanently with internal bleeding and his own knife pushed through his throat. Jack dodged a punch, grabbed the table and brought it down hard on another man’s head. Someone grabbed him from behind and lifted him into the air. Jack ruined his prospects of a family with a single backwards kick and finished off with a roundhouse blow to the head as the man went down.

All this was over in a few seconds confusing seconds. It was easy. Jack was laughing now, not a proper human laugh but the laugh of an addict tanked up on ecstasy and ready for the ride. It flowed like a river, no, like a hurricane through his blood. He was invincible, he was...

Then the knife sank into his shoulder and Jack yelled out in pain. He spun, wrenching the handle from the man’s grip, and lifted the guy bodily off the ground before hurling him into the door, which buckled instantly beneath his weight. Jack turned to the gun wielder who seemed completely un-phased by all this and who was now calmly aiming down his arm. The room was now empty apart from them.

He fired. The first bulled drew a line of fire across Jack’s cheek. Jack started to walk forwards while pulling the knife out of his shoulder where it had bit all the way to bone. The second shot missed entirely, the third spun wildly through the gap between Jacks arm and his body. sweat beaded on Jack's brow as he strained against the certainty that was a bullet to the forehead. The fourth shot hit him squarely in the leg but missed the bones and came out the other side in an explosion of gore. Jack stumbled but didn’t to stop, he was beyond pain now. Sure it would present it bill sooner or later but not now. He stared directly down the barrel as the three dud bullets clicked in the chamber one by one. There was an uncertain pause as the trigger was pulled a few times on an empty weapon, then the man dropped his gun and bunched his fists.

Jack smiled through gritted teeth “My turn”. He brought the knife round hard beneath the man’s ribs and kept pushing upwards until he hit the pulsations of the heart. The man grunted and looked down as bits of himself he didn’t even know he had as they slithered wetly onto the sticky, beer soaked boards. Jack held the knife there for a few seconds, then he twisted with the satisfaction of a man opening a stiff door on a rainy night and let go of the knife. The man swore quietly and keeled over sideways like a fallen oak. Jack picked up the gun, reloaded it with a round he found in corpse’s belt and put a bullet between the eyes of everyone still breathing. His hand shook uncontrollably. He liked people, even the evil ones, but he liked himself even more and humans had an unsettling tendency towards vengance.

He walked out onto the street swearing loudly and hailed a taxi that had just rounded the corner. Some people might have to wait for hours before a taxi appeared. Jack was not one of those people. The driver took one look at him, blood soaked and carrying a gun, and decided his future career rested in his ability to do exactly what he was told.

“Take me to a hotel” Jack said.

The driver raised one side of his single eyebrow “Which one”


“At this time of night, in august? You’ll be lucky to get a room mate” he laughed in a forced manner as the engine roared to life.

Jack looked at him with eyes that, the driver realised, were far, far too old.

“Yes I will” he said.

© 2010 Unwelcomeguest

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Always end dialogue with a comma. You have a couple of blanks early on. Also, I'm not sure if suicidaly is a word, but even if it is, it looks silly. Rephrase that line.

Speaking of rephrasing, you have an extra 'seconds' in there. "A few seconds confusing seconds."

Right after that, bad idea to start sentences with 'then'. Just remove it and start with 'The knife'.

Okay, with a prologue and a chapter down, let's talk about the book. In a sentence, it's average with bits of brilliance. The ending of chapter one (and the dark alley bit in the prologue) stands out as clever and effective, but the rest of it just kind of sits there.

Your action is good. Not great, but good. It won't remotely be enough to carry you though, and you had better show us something more substantial soon. You keep hinting at a real story, but it's time we saw it.

Posted 9 Years Ago

The story is amazing. You create a opportunity to write a outstanding story. The set-up and conversation in the poem was very good. The taxi and his last comment open the door for more story. I look forward to reading more. A excellent story. Action and a very good tale.

Posted 9 Years Ago

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2 Reviews
Added on March 20, 2010
Last Updated on May 31, 2010



Winchester, Hampshire , United Kingdom

Well, I'm sixteen and essentially sick and tired of the utter mundanity of the world I get to live in. When I was younger I would pretend to be an alien and escape from school or have imiginary sword .. more..

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