Shakespeare on the Roof, p.1Anthony E Thorogood
Shakespeare on the Roof
A Jack Hamma Action Adventure
by Anthony E Thorogood
Copyright Anthony E Thorogood 2014
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Shakespeare on the Roof
Two: Ready for Action
Three: Shoot Out
Four: Baked Beans
Five: Bulls Eye
Six: Dishonourably Discharged
Seven: Regency Royale
Eight: Welcome to the Monkey House
Nine: A Loud Mouthed Communist
Ten: The Three Musketeers
Eleven: Gotta Get Your Hands Dirty
Twelve: Too Many Tomatoes
Thirteen: Shark Attack
Fifteen: Silver Gulls
Sixteen: The Roof
Seventeen: Death in the Melaleucas
Eighteen: Go Just Go
Nineteen: No Way in the World
Twenty: Desert Island Discs
Twenty One: Stan the Man
Twenty Two: The Bunker
Twenty Three: Romeo and Juliet
Anthony E Thorogood
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The submarine surfaced in very rough seas but I didn't care, I would willingly have jumped into the jaws of hell with all the hell hounds, ghouls, ghosts, devils, fiends and any other malicious creatures you can imagine to get out of that claustrophobic hole. I had hated it in that submarine. At first I thought it was a bit of a lark but when the hatch at the top of the conning tower closed I thought I was going to freak out. I went completely gaga and my brain started to explode so I had steered a course at a slow motion run to my bunk, laid down, held my head tightly in my hands and hummed. I had been locked in a steel coffin deep under the sea and felt absolutely terrible. My head had filled with pins and needles, insects crawled about in my brain and there had been dazed dead areas where a fire storm had been through, and I felt sick, and that was during the good moments. My head felt like a giant swelling pumpkin, I lay on my bunk and hummed in misery. Me and my Pumpkin, I had said to myself, we will stick this out and come through at the other end.
There had been a conference about the mission, I was supposed to go to it, I didn't. These days they were only interested in me when they wanted me to shoot somebody, fuck em. I had been introduced to my fellow commando, I didn't take any notice, he only wanted me to help him kill people, let him do his own dirty work. After what seemed like days or even weeks, but was probably hours, of absolute terror someone came into my cabin and injected me with something, something lethal I had hoped, I had more than hoped I had prayed to God that it would finish me off and I didn't believe in God.
When I woke up I felt stiff and uncomfortable and was told by an able seaman that the submarine was surfacing, I jumped out of my bunk, banged my head, threw water over my face, most of it missed, cleaned myself up and got dressed, well I pulled and tugged at some clothing and pulled and tugged at zips, I think a few broke, and then I raced to the conning tower and was the first man out of the black hole. I stood up there clinging to some sort of railing and breathing in the cold damp salty air, it was wonderful, it is so absolutely lovely just to breathe sometimes you should try it. We had a double kayak, me and my very thin, young companion, he got in the front of the canoe, I think I can call a kayak a canoe, we had been introduced but it was in the days of my misery so I had paid no attention. I had even told him in no uncertain terms to remove his posterior from my immediacy, so we were probably not on the friendliest of terms. I climbed into the back of the canoe, it had a rudder, it was all singing and dancing and very heavy in the water, that was due to all the kit we carried, the waves crashed over us but I was ready to drown rather than go back into that submarine. The guy in front pointed away in to the distance and shouted at me but the wind swallowed up his words. I was snugly tucked into my section of the canoe so when the waves crashed over us no water entered the craft, I felt quite exhilarated. I loved the cold, sharp, splash of water and the knife edge of the cutting wind. The sailors pushed us off and we quickly fell into a rhythm paddling in perfect time over the cold dark grey sea. Two brave souls paddling off into eternity to fight for King and country, or was it two bloody idiots paddling off to their doom? More than likely the latter but apparently we were good for it.
The light was fading fast now, I had no idea what we were doing or where we were going, as I said, I hadn't been to the battle conference. The vast mass of the sea, in giant waves, crashed and smashed against our tiny craft and then it happened, a spotlight swept the sea around us and a machine gun opened fire. My mate turned, yelled at me and pointed, blood was streaming down the side of his face, we paddled faster and I steered the canoe to where he had pointed. We were moving as fast as we could to an appointment with a bullet. The machine gun rattled again and cut tiny holes in my paddle, it made quite a pretty pattern. Bullets started to smash into the rudder, the rudder spat the dummy and turned us into the course of the unfriendly fire. More bullets exploded into the back of the canoe and we began to take on water. Take on water, we were bloody sinking!
'This is wonderful, I love going on these adventure holidays!' I shouted. My fellow commando didn't hear me but I perversely felt great, I was far happier to be shot at on the open sea than to travel under it in a black hole of a submarine. I used what was left of my paddle to steer and doing this, by its very nature, slowed the canoe down and by changing speed the machine gun lost its aim and was busy shooting up the sea in front of us. Then we put on a burst of speed and the machine gun was busy shooting up the sea behind us. The sea was taking quite a battering that day, I don't know how it survived.
The canoe was getting heavy, we were sinking but the machine gun had lost its range and was, for the moment, harmless. The shore came into view, it was a horseshoe of sand shrouded by rocks and looked beautiful in the moonlight, yes the moon had slipped above the horizon and it lit us up like a second spotlight making a beam that shone straight across the waves to us.
The waves crashed violently on the rocks but in the bay the water was quiet, that was to no avail however as the machine gun got our range once again and bullets smashed into the side of our canoe. One more minute and we would be shot to buggery, we would be history, ancient history, then a bloody enormous great wave, a tsunami of a wave, crashed over us and I was in the sea trying to swim and hang on to the canoe.
The canoe and I were washed up in the little bay just where the rocks and the sand met. I was thoroughly wet and exhausted. A torch shone on the canoe and two men in black shirts ran to where I was lying in the surf, grabbed me and pulled me up the beach, then they stood me up, shouted at me and punched me so hard that I collapsed, they then started kicking me. It was not quite the welcoming committee I had hoped for but it was better than the traditional long and verbose speeches, give me a kick in the guts any day. I stood up fairly unsteadily on my feet, one of my black shirted friends tried to hit me again, I took him out with one good punch to the face, his friend decided he would shoot me with his AK47 automatic rifle, I liberated the rifle and shot him in the leg. I was hoping to sit down and enjoy the view but the fun and games weren't over yet, just at that moment three more men in black shirts, obviously part of the same welcoming committee, sprang at my mate who had just dragged himself out of the sea,
'Stop or I'll do something unpleasant.' I may be a commando, a killing machine, but I don't hurt anyone for the sheer pleasure of it. In this case things were out of my control, the three men who were roughing up my companion started to shoot at me. 'Fuck me dead,' I said and shot their legs out from under them. I walked over to my mate, stretched out my arm to give him a hand, he grabbed it, pulled me to the ground and smashed his fist into my face.
'Thanks very much,' I said as blood spurted from my nose, 'it always pays, I find, to help your fellow man.'
'Sorry,' he said in a high pitched voice. It was a strange voice, I couldn't place it, it had a touch of an American accent but that wasn't all that worried me, I couldn't quite put my finger on the problem but I knew it was a problem.
'Apology accepted but in future…' I said but I couldn't think of anything smart arse to say about the future, I didn't even know if we were going to get one, the present seemed very precarious, so I said nothing.
My mate stood up, picked up an AK47 and pointed the gun at the five wounded Black Shirts.
'Don't shoot them!' I shouted.
'Dead men tell no tales.'
'Just hold your fire, we're not Nazi storm troopers.'
'This is war.'
'Well I don't like your way of playing war.'
'Sorry I punched you in the nose but you should have identified yourself. It's my training.'
'Well I don't much like your training.'
'A girl friend touched me once, when I was asleep, and I jumped up and knocked her unconscious.'
'Poor old friend,' I said.
'That was unfortunate.'
'But apart from that you're mostly harmless?' I said.
'Yes, mostly I'm harmless.'
He then cocked his captured AK47 and aimed at the five men lying on the ground, I nudged him hard just as he was about to open fire and the gun spun out of his hands.
'They are enemy operatives!'
'Maybe I'm getting too old for this but I don't think it's necessary to kill everybody.'
'Have you gone soft?'
'Maybe I have, I'm tired of all the killing.'
'It's our job, it's our mission to clean up the world.'
'I don't know if I want to live in a world that clean.'
'I'm beginning not to like you.'
'Don't worry, I assure you the feeling is very much mutual,' I said.
We tied up and gagged our captured Black Shirts and dragged them up into the scrub. My mate mentioned that it would have been quicker and easier to put them out of their misery but I said they probably didn't think so.
Shakespeare on the Roof by Anthony E Thorogood / Mystery & Detective / Thrillers & Crime have rating 4.3 out of 5 / Based on17 votes