Freer Snippets

All The Plagues Of Hell – Snippet 48

All The Plagues Of Hell - Snippet 48 Chapter 25 Corfu The Venetian fleet, storm-battered and tired, limped into Corfu harbor, having had to make back most of the distance they'd been blown south under oars. Several of the vessels would have to remain in the little Arsenal for major repairs, and it would be a few days at least before even those which had weathered the storm best could sail on in convoy for Venice. Benito was glad he was going to be leaving them there. Glad to get back to Corfu, glad to get back to his wife and babe. Maria was...

All The Plagues Of Hell – Snippet 47

All The Plagues Of Hell - Snippet 47 "And can you provide those?" asked Francisco, who had reached his own conclusions. The bookseller looked at him from under heavy-lidded eyes. "Can I make gold from base metal? What do you think, Caviliero? If I could transport magically would I travel by wagon? If I could conjure ever-filled purses or demons to transport the treasures of the earth to me, would I be down in the cellar grinding charcoal and saltpeter crystals, and adding various other substances to achieve suitable smoke? Would I not have...

All The Plagues Of Hell – Snippet 46

All The Plagues Of Hell - Snippet 46 She smiled at them, "Good morning, úr," she said, in heavily accented Frankish--and not with the Italian accent, either. Hungarian, by the honorific. Francisco was dressed well enough for the woman to grant him that, and a small bow. She did keep one hand tucked in her apron, and there was a bucket and mop just behind her. A smell of new baked bread, and… gunpowder tickled Francisco's nose. He bowed politely. "Jó napot kívánok." He said cautiously, expending his entire supply of polite Hungarian. He...

All The Plagues Of Hell – Snippet 44

All The Plagues Of Hell - Snippet 44 **** But by the time he arrived at the hamlet of Cerlongo, some miles from Goito, and just inside the lands held by his troops, to meet his sappers and siege cannon, he was so exhausted he merely gave the orders and went to bed. He wasn't that surprised to find that his officers had sent for Francisco Turner, who was there on his waking. "If that explosion didn't wake you, you're sick," said his physician grimly, taking his pulse. "Did it work?" he asked. "Took out the center-span, the one next to it,...

All The Plagues Of Hell – Snippet 43

All The Plagues Of Hell - Snippet 43 Chapter 23 The borders of the duchy of Milan Duke Umberto's finest men marched toward the town of Fidenza, which had so recently been taken from the Parman forces. His pennants fluttered bravely on their lances, as the troops advanced as if on a grand parade. Those cowardly mercenaries of Sforza's kept trying to draw them out with little darts forward on the flanks of his tercios. They would caracole, fire their horse-pistols and then retreat. Ha. Sooner or later they would be unable to run. He had them...

All The Plagues Of Hell – Snippet 42

All The Plagues Of Hell - Snippet 42 Chapter 21 The Duchy of Milan Actually, Count Mindaug and his two servants were at that very moment having their first encounter with the mercenary troops of Carlo Sforza. The soldiers were guarding a bridge over the Adda River, and had positioned themselves in such a way as to direct flanking fire from their harquebuses to support the half-dozen lancers on the bridge. They weren't in loot-and-destroy mode yet, thankfully, because Count Mindaug would have had little choice but to use magical means to...

All The Plagues Of Hell – Snippet 41

All The Plagues Of Hell - Snippet 41 "Oh, they can get very close--within a few feet, usually. The count pays little attention to mice in his wagon, so long as they stay away from his crates of books. Even squirrels, he generally ignores. He's odd, that way." Dimitrios smiled. "Of course, my little friends have little brains as well. So while they can hear what he and his servants say, they are just meaningless sounds to them." "You can't translate?" "Oh, no. I hear only what they do. But there's nothing wrong with their eyesight, and I see...

All The Plagues Of Hell – Snippet 40

All The Plagues Of Hell - Snippet 40 So, it was time to move on again. Despite Tamas complaining of a terrible headache, and protesting about not being allowed to pole up the horses and do the other tasks he normally did for the count, they left early the next day, going west. Mindaug waited until they were well clear of the town and in a clearing surrounded by trees that blocked sight and would muffle sound before getting Emma to practice with the hand cannon. The count tried it out first. It kicked, and left the firer in a cloud of blue...