Revolution Lacrosse | ConnectLAX
Revolution Lacrosse | ConnectLAX
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Most REV teams are formed by graduation year. Each team consists of set rosters and ONLY 22 field players.
REV spends the fall, winter and summer seasons playing in numerous college recruiting tournaments and play for fun tournaments. We seek only the best competition and travel anywhere to find it.
Teams regularly practice as a unit working within the REV Developmental Program.
Three years in the making, the REV Developmental Program consists of over a hundreds drills and stations designed to give our players the fastest foot work and physical presence, the most advanced understanding of the game, the most progressive technique and genuine confidence. There is absolutely NOTHING like the REV Developmental Program in the country!
We are serious when we say we are developing the next breed of lacrosse players.
There are no coaches associated with this company.
|The Prout School||South Kingstown , RI||Mid|
|Bromfield School||Harvard, MA||Mid, Draw|
|Concord-Carlisle||Concord, MA||Att, Mid, Faceoff, Draw|
|The Bromfield School||Harvard, MA||Mid|
|The Bromfield School||Harvard, MA||Mid|
|Needham High School||Needham, MA||Mid, Def, Draw|
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April 2nd, 2020
2 April 2020
Baltimore Fitness & Spin Classes | REV Cycle Studio
Our Why: Towson Women’s Lacrosse
Posted on February 5, 2020 in REV Community
We love our private rides! Not only is it a great team-bonding opportunity, but for the Towson Women’s Lacrosse team, it’s also perfect cross-training! This group has gotten together to sweat and bond in our studio more than once, so we decided to ask Shanna Brady, their assistant lacrosse coach, the why behind booking a private ride with us.
Tell us about yourself and your role for the Towson Women’s Lacrosse team.
This is my first year as the Assistant Coach for the Women’s lacrosse team. I grew up on Long Island and played lacrosse at the University of Maryland. I still play professionally throughout the summer and spinning helps to keep me in shape. When I first graduated college, I started to get into spinning because I loved how hard it was and more importantly how positive of an impact it had on me, not just physically. I wanted a workout that would challenge me at a level that pushed me just as hard as a typical practice would. When I moved to Baltimore, my sister recommended that I take Barb’s class. Living on Long Island I was a frequent rider at SoulCycle, so she knew how much I loved spin and how much I would love going to REV.
Why do you choose REV for your team bonding activities?
Practicing every day on the field can become routine at times, so bringing the team to REV has been incredible. I love how the classes are always built on a team/family mentality. It is something that’s always been important to me, being an athlete, and I felt the girls would not only love it, but would be challenged in a new and different way. In class, they are working hard and pushing themselves, while still being held to the same, team-first mentality that we hold them to on the field. I specifically chose Barb because she has the ability to move and inspire. The way she teaches is something I personally think cannot be taught, and she is the perfect role model to push them out of their comfort zones. Her message is always something powerful and positive, and sometimes just hearing those messages can go a long way.
What do you think your team gets out of these private rides?
Being able to come together as a group and work alongside one another helps to push and motivate them. Having our coaching staff ride with them helps to give a new perspective and create a sense of trust and togetherness that they don’t necessarily get in practice. We are able to be vulnerable with them and try something new by working together throughout the ride, where as in practice, we are the ones coaching them. It’s also a great chance for our team to have a fun bonding experience, to push themselves and to become better at something they are not used to doing. The team is a super outgoing, energetic group – just listening to good music while working out is fun for all of us. As a coaching staff we often speak about encouraging one another and working together when facing obstacles or challenges throughout a practice, game, season etc. In our last private ride, Barb spoke about when we encourage one another, it increases courage to those around us. We were able to take an important message away from that and use it on the field.
Have you seen any noticeable differences (mentally and/or physically) in your team since they have been sweating together at REV?
We definitely have noticed differences in our mentality and overall presence when we are together as a team. The girls love being able to work out together, do something super hard but also so much fun. It helps to keep things light and that has translated to our success as a team on the field. The best type of team chemistry happens when they enjoy what they are doing. Some of the girls have even gone to classes at REV individually and that has been really cool to see. I think for me personally, I have been super grateful since starting to ride at REV. Spin has always been my outlet and being new to the city, it helped create a place where I felt like I was home. I have been able to build new friendships and have been so positively influenced by Barb and all that she stands for. I know that every class I will be challenged physically and mentally and I will leave feeling better than before I started.
What keeps you and your team coming back?
I think what keeps us coming back is all of the amazing things I have just spoken about. It’s so special to have the opportunity to continually better yourself alongside your friends and teammates. Not to mention the kick ass workout!
Have a group of 25 or more and are interested in holding a private ride in one of our studios? Reach out to us at [email protected] to learn more!
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Women’s Lacrosse Archives – WNUR Sports
Sriman Narayanan takes you through the Wildcats’ last weekend of the 2021 spring season.
With the ‘Cats headed to the final four, read our staff’s predictions about whether they’ll be bringing yet another championship trophy back to Evanston.
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- Women’s Lacrosse
Eli Finkelstein recaps NCAA Tournament play, including a quarterfinal win for lacrosse and a hard-fought run for softball, plus baseball’s series win over Iowa.
Northwestern lacrosse took down Duke to advance to the NCAA Tournament semifinals.
The past week was filled with ups and downs for the Wildcats, highlighted by lacrosse’s dominant win over Denver in the second round of the NCAA tournament and softball’s own tournament berth with a series win over Nebraska. Avrami Hacker shares the latest non-rev happenings.
Northwestern Lacrosse defeated Denver 19-4 to advance to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Tournament. Kikue Higuchi analyzes their dominant win.
Baseball waits, softball strains and the quest for a championship is officially on. Jack Lido gives you a wrap-up of the past weekend’s action.
Ryan Choe recaps all Northwestern non-rev sports in our weekly series.
Andrew Neville takes over the second non-rev recap of the spring season. Read all about how Northwestern’s non-revenue sports performed this past weekend.
Northwestern lacrosse’s deadly offense picked up right where it left off in the season opener, scorching Ohio State with 23 goals.
Northwestern lacrosse, and its high-power offense, makes its much anticipated return Sunday, 11 months after last season was cut short.
Before COVID-19 shut down the 2020 lacrosse season, Izzy Scane starred for the ‘Cats. She looks back on her best performance.
1. Field Status Hotlines
To get up-to-the-minute status of Southborough fields please call 508-485-0710 & press 8.
For weekend updates on the Algonquin fields please call 508-351-7010,press 5, then press 1.
Bay State Bullets
Bay State Bullets offer Club Lacrosse to girls grades 3 and up playing throughout MA and NE regionally.
Central Lacrosse Club
Central Club is located in Central MA offering girls Club lacrosse for youth and up.
Gold Star Lacrosse
Gold Star Lacrosse offers girls club lacrosse to youth grades 3 and up- located out of Milford, MA
The Northborough-Southborough Youth Lacrosse Association Web Site.
This is the boys youth program.
Rev Lacrosse is located through NE offering club options year round.
Lacrosse Magazine is the flagship publication of US Lacrosse. LM has the distinction as the first feature magazine dedicated to the fastest game on two feet, and is the most widely-read lacrosse publication in the world.
US Lacrosse provides a leadership role in virtually every aspect of the game throughout the United States, and offers a number of programs and information services to its national membership and more than one million lacrosse enthusiasts throughout the country.
Max Ruhl – Head Women’s Lacrosse Coach / Director of Fitness & Recreation – Staff Directory
Max Ruhl was hired as the Spartans’ next head women’s lacrosse coach on Aug. 13, 2020. He becomes the fourth head coach in program history succeeding Lindsay Carlile, who stepped down from her position in July.
In addition to his coaching responsibilities, Ruhl will also serve as the University’s Director of Fitness & Recreation. The Spartans’ new leader is quite accustomed to the integration of faith and learning both as a student-athlete and as a coach. A graduate of NCAA DII Ohio Valley University, a private, Christian college in Vienna, West Virginia, Ruhl was a member of OVU’s first-ever men’s lacrosse team and later returned to the university as the inaugural head women’s lacrosse coach in 2015.
“Max brings a wealth of knowledge and experience in both lacrosse and fitness education,” Smith said of Coach Ruhl. “I have no doubt that he will immediately contribute to the success of our programs both on and off the field.”
Ruhl will usher in a new era for Missouri Baptist Women’s Lacrosse with plenty to work with including the return of two-time NAIA Second Team All-American Kaitlin Mills in goal, an offensive juggernaut in Jordan Haeusser, who has posted 54 points (40 G, 14 A) in just 13 career games played, along with a healthy mixture of young and veteran talent.
“There’s a lot that enticed me about MBU … the location, facilities, a faith-based environment, a vision of creating a nationally sought-after program, career growth,” Ruhl explained. “What has caught my attention the most has been my conversation with the team. They want to win, and they want to work for those wins.”
Leading the brand-new program to its most successful season in school history, Ruhl was the recipient of Ohio Valley University Athletics’ Coach of the Year Award in 2018-19. His 2019 squad led the Great Midwest Athletic Conference in draw controls per game (15.80), while individually, the Fighting Scots boasted the conference leader in caused turnovers, ground balls and draw controls/game and had a trio of players rank in the league’s Top 10 in goals per game. During his time with the Scots, Ruhl led three individuals to the all-conference team, five to the academic all-conference team and the team was named an IWLCA Academic Honor Squad in 2018. Ruhl also participated on the IWLCA Top 25 and NCAA DII Top 20 Coaches’ Polls.
While at Ohio Valley, Ruhl also bolstered his resume in higher education spending nearly two years as Associate Director of Admissions, two years as an adjunct professor and two more as Director of Sports Management.
Following the 5+ years at his alma mater, Ruhl spent 2019-20 as head women’s lacrosse coach at NCAA DIII Gordon College, a nationally-ranked, Christian, liberal arts institution in Wenham, Massachusetts. While at Gordon, Ruhl had 11 individuals selected to the Academic All-CCC list. He also coached with the REV Lacrosse Club out of the greater Boston area. REV is nationally known for producing strong and confident, young women, as well as producing some of New England’s premier tournaments and showcases.
Other related work experience for Ruhl includes serving as strength and conditioning graduate assistant at Frostburg State University and assistant coach for Ohio University’s Division I men’s lacrosse club team, where he got his start in coaching.
Ruhl graduated from Ohio Valley University with his B.A. in Wellness and Health Sciences in 2011 and proceeded to pursue a pair of master’s degrees. He graduated with a Master’s in Recreation and Sport Science from Ohio University in 2012, and worked towards his MBA at Frostburg State.
“With some of my immediate family already well established in St. Louis, I’ve been in and out of the city for 18 years now, so coming to MBU is like coming home,” Ruhl added.
90,000 Air tickets Reva – La Crosse. Prices for Tickets.kg
Cheap flights from Reva to La Crosse
Want to buy the cheapest flight from Reva to La Crosse? We compare prices for direct and connecting flights from Rewa to La Crosse among 750 airlines and agencies. Why waste your time searching if there is a more convenient opportunity to take advantage of discounts, promotions and sales of low-cost airlines via the Internet. Using the full schedule of flights Reva – La Crosse you will quickly find the desired flight option, specify the days of flights and the availability of tickets on a specific date.
For online shopping or booking, you need to decide on only a few points: type of flight, number of passengers, class and date of departure and arrival. Then go to pay for the ticket, and the job will be done. You will receive an email with order information.
Ticket price Rewa – La Crosse
How much is a plane ticket to La Crosse from Reva and how to get it cheaper? We have several recommendations taken from the calendar of the best prices for air tickets on this route:
1) Pricing depends on the month of departure, we recommend booking first and business class in advance.You shouldn’t delay buying an economy class ticket either – do it in 2-4 months.
2) The cheapest flights REW – LSE are available on Wednesday and Thursday. They tend to be more expensive on weekends.
3) It is more profitable to buy tickets in both directions at once than there and back separately.
Useful information before booking your trip from Reva to La Crosse
On our service you can find out:
- Distance and duration of the flight (how long is the flight from Reva to La Crosse?)
- Airlines operating direct flights to La Crosse from Reva
- Airlines providing the cheapest tickets from Reva to La Crosse
- How long does a flight from Reva to La Crosse
- Airports of Reva to La Crosse
How far is Rewa from La Crosse?
From the city of Réva to La Crosse 12369 km.
What airports are there for flights on the Rewa – La Crosse route?
In the city of Rewa: Rewa. In La Crosse – La Crosse Munisipal.
90,000 Air tickets La Crosse – Reva. Prices for Tickets.kg
Cheap flights from La Crosse to Rewa
Want to get the cheapest price from La Crosse to Reva? We compare the prices of direct and connecting flights from La Crosse to Reva among 750 airlines and agencies. Why waste your time searching if there is a more convenient opportunity to take advantage of discounts, promotions and sales of low-cost airlines via the Internet.Using the full flight schedule La Crosse – Reva you will quickly find the desired flight option, specify the days of flights and the availability of tickets for a specific date.
For online shopping or booking, you need to decide on only a few points: type of flight, number of passengers, class and date of departure and arrival. Then go to pay for the ticket, and the job will be done. You will receive an email with order information.
Price of the air ticket La Crosse – Rewa
How much is a plane ticket to Revu from La Crosse and how to get it cheaper? We have several recommendations taken from the calendar of the best prices for air tickets on this route:
1) Pricing depends on the month of departure, we recommend booking first and business class in advance.You shouldn’t delay buying an economy class ticket either – do it in 2-4 months.
2) The cheapest flights LSE – REW are available on Wednesday and Thursday. They tend to be more expensive on weekends.
3) It is more profitable to buy tickets in both directions at once than there and back separately.
Useful information before booking travel from La Crosse to Revu
On our service you can find out:
- Distance and duration of the flight (how long to fly from La Crosse to Revu?)
- Airlines operating direct flights to Rewa from La Crosse
- Airlines providing the cheapest tickets from La Crosse to Revu
- How long does a flight from La Crosse to Revu
- Airports of La Crosse to Reva
How far is La Crosse from Reva?
From the city of La Crosse to Reva 12369 km.
Which airports are there for flights from La Crosse to Reva?
In the city of La Crosse: La Crosse Munisipal. In Reva – Reva.
|Year||Senior B||Senior C||Junior A||Junior B Level I||Junior B Level II||Junior B Level III||Older Ladies||Young ladies|
|1995||Edmonton Miners||Edmonton Miners|
|1996||Edmonton Miners||Edmonton Miners|
|1997||Edmonton Miners||Edmonton Miners|
|1998||Edmonton Miners||Edmonton Miners|
|1999||Edmonton Miners||Edmonton Miners|
|2000||nobody||Calgary Mountaineers||Edmonton Warriors|
|2001||Edmonton Outlaws||Edmonton Miners||Edmonton Warriors|
|2002||Edmonton Outlaws||Edmonton Miners||Sherwood Park Titans|
|2003||Edmonton Outlaws||Edmonton Miners||Edmonton Warriors||Sherwood Park Titans|
|2004||Edmonton Outlaws||Edmonton Miners||Calgary Mountaineers||Edmonton Warriors|
|2005||Sherwood Park Outlaws||Calgary Raiders||Edmonton Warriors||Red Deer Rampage||Sherwood Park Titans|
|2006||Sherwood Park Outlaws||Edmonton Miners||Edmonton Warriors||Sun Devils Medicated Hat||Calgary Mavericks||Sherwood Park Titans|
|2007||Sherwood Park Outlaws||Edmonton Miners||Calgary Mountaineers||Fort Saskatchewan Rebels||Cinnabar Roar||Sherwood Park Titans|
|2008||Sherwood Park Outlaws||Edmonton Miners||Calgary Mountaineers||Fort Saskatchewan Rebels||Okotox Icemen||Sherwood Park Titans|
|2009||Okotox Raiders||Edmonton Eclipse||Calgary Mountaineers||Fort Saskatchewan Rebels||Sun Devils Medicated Hat||Sherwood Park Titans|
|2010||St. Albert Miners||Calgary Raiders||Calgary Mountaineers||Sun Devils Medicated Hat||Strathmore Poison||Sherwood Park Titans|
|2011||St. Albert Miners||Red Deer IFR Overalls Silverbacks||Calgary Raiders||Calgary Mountaineers||Edmonton Wizards||High river heat||Calgary Cougars||Sherwood Park Titans|
|2012||Rockview Knights||Calgary Irish||Calgary Mountaineers||Calgary Mountaineers||Cinnabar Roar||High river heat||Calgary Cougars||Sherwood Park Titans|
|2013||Calgary Mountaineers||Blackfolds Silverbacks||Calgary Raiders||Calgary Mountaineers||Sun Devils Medicated Hat||Sun Devils Medicated Hat||Calgary Cougars||Calgary Cardinals|
|2014||St. Albert Miners||Blackfolds Silverbacks||Calgary Mountaineers||Red Deer Rampage||Lethbridge Barracuds||Crows of Voronya Pass||Edmonton Bandits||
Sherwood Park Titans (A)
St. Albert Drillers (B)
|2015||Rockview Knights||Blackfolds Silverbacks||Okotox Raiders||Saskatchewan SWAT||Fort Saskatchewan Rebels||Olds Mavericks||Edmonton Bandits||Sherwood Park Titans|
|2016||St. Albert Miners||Airdrie Mohawx||Calgary Mountaineers||Manitoba Blizzard||Olds Mavericks||High river heat||Edmonton Bandits||Sherwood Park Titans|
|2017||St. Albert Miners||Airdrie Mohawx||Okotox Raiders||Manitoba Blizzard||Lethbridge Barracudas||Olds Stinger||Calgary Cougars||Sherwood Park Titans|
|2018||St. Albert Miners||Airdrie Mohawx||Okotox Raiders||Calgary Shamrox||Lloydminster Xtreme||West Kootenay Timberwolves||Calgary Cougars||Saints of the Capital Region|
|2019||TBD||TBD||TBD||TBD||Sylvan Lake Yetty||Cranbrook Outlaws||Sherwood Park Titans||Calgary Cardinals|
90,000 Read Online “Last Tears of Heaven” for free
His name is Kronos.The son of his father, his people, is a demon and no one else. Born from the union of two powerful demons – Tartarus, and Diverra. The sorcerers prophesied him a short life, but he did not give up, from the very first breath. The fact is that they tried to impose an exsanguination spell on the father – gradually killing the curse, sucking out all the life force of the enchanted. But the spell did not hit him, but lurked in the blood and passed on to the young demon. Parents were generals, one of the strongest demons in the kingdom of darkness.They tirelessly searched for an opportunity to dispel magic and give their child a chance to escape. But all attempts were in vain. Life in it was supported by constant infusions of energy from artifacts containing it, and when their reserves ran out, the mother, in despair, began to share hers.
At that time, the power changed in hell. High General Fiarteon, father of Tartarus, was succeeded by General Caracas. There were many rumors and speculations about these times, but only a few knew the truth. Most demons took it for the truth that Fiarteon stole the most ancient artifact – the sphere of chaos, and, having gone to the earth, to the kingdom of people, hid it there.For what purpose, no one knew, but it was an extremely insane act that betrayed each and every demon. This legend was woven from the words of Hodir, the supreme sorcerer who took part in the battle with him. He never managed to find the sphere, created by himself.
The family of Kronos was slandered, and everyone turned away from it, leaving the newborn with no chance of healing. But after a while, the supreme general of Caracas and the supreme sorcerer Hodir offered to help, to try to carry out a ritual of purification.But this required one demonic soul. The mother, without a moment’s hesitation, made the decision to sacrifice herself for the sake of saving her child. Tartarus tried to dissuade Diverra from this decision, offering to give his soul in return, but the council of demons flatly refused his father’s request to grant him freedom. There was no other choice but to use the mother’s soul. Tartarus again knew the bitterness of loss when the lifeless body of his wife, after performing the ritual, fell to the floor. On that day, two souls were burned at once.Hodir failed to dispel the spell, the magic was ancient and extremely powerful, so he directed all the life energy of the mother into the child, giving him a couple of decades of life. The magician also learned how to dispel the spell – the one who cast it had to die at the hands of the damned. Kronos had a thorny path to healing, but now he had a chance.
Thousands of days later, the father not for a moment, without interruption, continued to take care of his son. The years passed, and the demon grew, and with it his strength.Kronos learned the technique of using the sword, the art of spells. His father taught him everything he knew himself, and soon Kronos became strong enough to take part in battles.
Once, sitting on the threshold of my house, I was waiting for my father, who was supposed to return after a hard battle, where he won a brilliant victory. Our home, like many others in this circle of hell, was a two-story tower-like structure ending in a high spire at the top. At the entrance hung the coat of arms of the family – a bloody griffin, meaning: power, power and strength.Nearby there were also seemingly similar houses in which other demons lived. Around, for hundreds of meters, there was only scorched earth, and on the horizon the eternally frozen dying sun. At the end of the street, two figures appeared, slowly approaching me. Recognizing my father’s outlines and becoming interested in his companion, I got up from the steps and went to meet them.
– Father, I’m glad to see you! You’re not hurt, is everything okay? You look very tired.
“Everything is fine, even though the battle was very difficult, but we held out and coped with the onslaught of the angels, curbing their rage,” the father uttered almost in a whisper.
A demon standing next to my father introduced himself and spoke to me:
– My name is Caracas. I am the supreme general. Glad to meet you, – said the general, holding out his hand to me.
– This is a great honor for me, – out of surprise, I could no longer squeeze out a word from myself and timidly, as a sign of respect, shook his hand.
Before me stood the same demon who controls the generals leading the troops into battle. A born leader and invincible warrior, as time has shown.This is exactly what many people told me, who even out of the corner of their ear heard his name.
– Tartarus, let’s go, they are waiting for us, the council wants to reward you for your outstanding service to the legion. This battle was a turning point in the course of the war!
“One more minute,” the father replied. Gazing at me intently, he grabbed the hilt of the sword and drew the blade.
– Son, I will give you this sword. He was forged deep in the depths of hell by a legendary warrior and councilor, your grandfather. The sword is endowed with tremendous power. This is a family heirloom, take care of it.Soon, you yourself will be able to test this blade in battle.
At the very moment when Tartarus handed the sword to his son, Kronos noticed how the face of the supreme general had changed. Literally for a moment, his eyes filled with rage, but the young demon did not attach any importance to it.
– Father, I will not let you down, I swear to be a worthy receiver and accept this gift with honor! – Interrupting his son’s enthusiasm, the father added: – Okay, but that’s not all. Taking an old scroll out of his pocket, Tartarus unrolled it.“This is another relic of our Kronos family, a power that rightfully belongs to you. This is my father’s seal the curse of Arzateros. Now she belongs to you.
– Ranumos putanos satta, azios haima. – Tartarus uttered a spell and on the right forearm of Kronos, through an intolerable burning sensation, a symbol appeared – that very seal.
– No matter how prudent on my part, your new seal will require a lot of energy from you, you do not yet have such reserves. But now I will fix it.- The seal on Tartarus’ hand lit up with white light and his life force began to flow into the seal of Kronos. – Your body must get used to the new energy, so you will not immediately feel the increasing strength in yourself. Remember what I taught you son, soon you will embark on the path destined by fate.
– Hurry, Tartarus, the council doesn’t like to wait! – Persistently said the Supreme General.
Kronos had the feeling that his father was saying goodbye to him, anxiety filled his mind, but he did not dare to stop his father.Caracas, with a wave of his hand, created a portal in which he, along with Tartarus, disappeared.
Kronos headed home. On the way, he reflected on war and the meaning of the eternal confrontation between light and darkness. Entering his house and sitting down on a bench in the corridor, he began to examine the weapon. The sword really looked majestic: a curved blade with several teeth, in the middle of which 2 red stones were inserted. The guard connecting the blade and the hilt was the family crest – a griffin with its wings spread wide.At the end there was a small peak, in the center of which there was a stone, all the same red. Kronos was filled with pride to hold this relic in his hands. The young demon decided to practice with the new weapon and spent several hours honing his skills.
Suddenly, a sharp stabbing pain was reflected in the heart. The anxiety that arose after the departure of his father did not subside. There was a knock at the door – I did not expect anyone, who could it be? – thought Kronos, going to the door and opening it, he saw unfamiliar demons standing on the threshold.
– Did you want something? – He asked uncertainly.
– Kronos, you must come with us, the Supreme General sent us. – Said one of them.
– Did something happen?
– We do not know anything, we were sent for you. – Answered another demon.
– Okay, I’ll go with you. – Taking his sword, he went to the portal created by one of the demons, all together they were transported to the council chamber.
Kronos has never been to this place. Looking around, he noticed an engraved fresco on the ceiling depicting Lucifer being cast out by a god.Huge portraits of generals, past and present, hung on the walls. Blood oozed from all the paintings, it gathered in one large stream and fell into a bloody fountain. The floor was made of black stone, reflecting the entire room. Only generals, healers, warriors and sorcerers were allowed here – those who had won more than once in battles with angels. There were a huge number of demons in the hall, Kronos did not know any of them. Everyone watched him contemptuously, for them he was a descendant of a traitor, a pitiful rag and nothing more.
The doors of the hall swung open, and the Supreme General appeared before everyone:
– Brothers, tragedy has occurred. Tartarus is no longer with us.
Tears instantly came to Kronos’s eyes:
– What … what happened?
– The portal into which we left, Kronos, was intercepted. I don’t know how, but we ended up not here, but in the place where the angels surrounded us. Your father and I fought until we lost our strength, but after a long battle, the angels still managed to prevail.When the angels tried to attack, your father saved me, shielding me with his chest. Dying, he asked me to retreat otherwise his sacrifice would be in vain. Immediately I went to hell to gather all the most important warriors and tell about what happened.
At that moment, something broke in me. I felt like hatred, and despair took my heart in a vice, and closed. My father and I were very close and now that he is gone, I will not step back from fulfilling my vow! I watched as everyone dispersed, grieving and angry, and could not budge.The Supreme General approached me:
– We need to talk, let’s go.
I had no choice but to follow him. We walked along the corridor, on the walls of which were hung the armor of the great warriors who gave their lives on the battlefield.
– Kronos, I understand how hard it is for you now, and I offer my sincere condolences. But you have to be strong and hold back your emotions. You have a long and difficult path ahead of you, but if you gather all your will into a fist, you will reach such heights that you did not dare even think about.- The general’s voice was extremely harsh and seemed to beat me in the heart, tearing the wound even harder.
– What do you mean? – I asked.
– I’m talking about a mission for which we will prepare you!
– It’s too early to talk about it. Tomorrow you will start your new journey. As befits a real warrior, you will train yourself to manage your strength, that potential, which is so huge that even I wonder what can come of all this.In the meantime, rest, you will need strength like never before.
I left the room and went to the portal from which I came. The general’s words were spinning in my head. Am I so important? Mission? What was he talking about. I don’t want to think about it, I really need to rest. Father, why did you leave me now. …
When I got home, I just fell on the bed and immediately fell asleep.
The next day I received a letter from the high general, which said that I needed to appear in the first belt of the seventh circle of hell, in a city called Dith.Portals between the circles were accessible, and everyone could move in order to explore the surroundings. And for high-ranking demons, it was an order control mechanism. After going to the nearest, common portal, I moved to my destination. The entrance to the city was open and not guarded. Here, as in every circle of hell, sinners were tortured. In the ditches filled with red-hot blood, tyrants and robbers boiled. Their screams filled everything around, and the centaurs, standing on the dais, shot down those who managed to emerge.Moving further into the city, I saw dozens of demons, just as curiously looking at everything around, as I am.
– I am Kronos, son of Tartarus! – I introduced myself, coming closer to them.
The demons looked at me and continued to communicate with each other, grinning.
A demon dressed in light armor emerged from the portal that manifested nearby – I am Margat. By order of the supreme general, from today on I will train you! Mastery of weapons, powerful spells and control of internal energy – all this awaits those who will be worthy of training. To find out which one of you has potential, you will fight with the training rippers. If you can defeat at least one of them, you will stay. If not, you have no place among us. – Margat opened a portal, from which emerged creatures, into whose mutilated bodies armor was implanted. Instead of hands, they had round blades, and their faces were covered with iron masks. Despite their rather heavy gait, they immediately rushed to attack the demons. Reflecting the attacks of creatures, the demons now and then jumped back, waiting for the moment for a counterattack, but he did not come.The lifeless eyes of the rippers reflected only indifference, they relentlessly struck cold-blooded blows with their blades, piercing the guard posts of the demons. Kronos immediately recognized that the rippers were controlled by Margath, but it was not possible to approach him, he was guarded by two of the largest creatures. The rippers managed to seriously injure some demons, and will switch to others who are still able to fight. Kronos, observing this picture, decided to rectify the situation by trying to use his seal.He had not yet tested it in battle, but thanks to his father’s lessons, he had a rough idea of how to release his energy. Noticing that the demon was concentrating, Margat directed all the rippers at him. Frightened by the approaching enemies, Kronos began to retreat back, at this moment his sword began to glow with white light. As if possessing its own mind, the sword, controlling Kronos, began to reflect enemy attacks and deliver direct blows to the weak points of the joints of the creatures’ armor. Meanwhile, demons capable of fighting rushed into battle with special rippers.With all the enemies down, Kronos joined the demons in the battle against the last two enemies. Under the effect of the sword’s control, he climbed up the ripper’s back and cut his mask. Piercing the back of the head, the blade came out of the forehead. The demon drew the blade and, jumping onto another ripper, killed him with a blow to the scabbard.
– Impressive! At such a young age, you already own the seal. – said Margat.
– This is a gift from my father. I swore that I would become the greatest warrior, by all means! – answered Kronos.
– For your bravery in battle, I will create a healing ether so that you and the other demons can heal your wounds. – Margat, directing the flow of his energy into the ground, pulled out a bowl filled with red liquid. – Drink, my brothers, enjoy the taste of victory.
Thus ended my first test of joining Margat’s group. Each subsequent day, we gathered in different places, fighting with each other and with the various creations of Margath, and learned new spells. Over time, training hardened me, knocking unnecessary thoughts out of my head.Having learned to use my inner energy, I soon defeated Margat in a one-on-one battle. After this victory, I began to fight in duels in a new group. Gradually cultivating my strength, I became the most powerful demons in the group and Margat with the supreme general decided that my appearance on the battlefield should take place immediately.
A few days later, Kronos was called to his first battle with the angels. While in the armory room with the rest of the demons, he prepared for the upcoming event.There were about a hundred demons in the army, many of them were newcomers, just like Kronos, this was noticeable in their behavior and a small amount of fear in their eyes. Unexpectedly for everyone, the supreme general entered the room, all the demons bowed, in a sign of respect.
– Greetings, Kronos. – Approaching him, said Caracas.
– My compliments, Supreme General.
– Today is a great day for you! Show what you are capable of!
– Yes! After all, this is why I am here.
– I have a present for you.- The general held out the box, which he had been holding in his hands all this time. Opening it, neatly folded armor appeared before Kronos’s eyes. “This type of armor is only worn by elite warriors. Your father was a great demon and the time will soon come when you surpass him. They are rightfully yours.
– I thank you for giving me the opportunity to be here, to participate in the war, which I have dreamed of for a very long time.
Donning his armor, Kronos looked into the mirror on the wall.A helmet with wings billowing upward, in the center of which there was a black mark, indicating that a warrior in this armor is especially dangerous. Putting on equipment with it was very dangerous to life, because most enemies would attack the warrior with this mark in the first place. Worn on the shoulders, wide, curly shoulder pads visually expanded the body. They, like the cuirass, were black, and a bright red cape with the council’s coat of arms covered the back. The new armor of Kronos was significantly different from that worn by other demons.Each was dressed in a single classic standard of armor – plate armor, no frills. Horns were attached to the helmet to intimidate the enemy. It was allowed to show individuality in only one thing – in their weapons. Swords, axes, daggers and spears were all different. They were united only by the symbols applied to the weapon, denoting: strength and courage, pain and hatred – what the opposing side had to face.
Strange, why did the Supreme General give me such a gift? Perhaps he wants to test me? Thought Kronos.After talking with other demons, he learned that none of those present here owns the seal. Only tens of thousands of demons could possess the seal, having earned it in battle or for other feats. His father said that some demons possess not one, but several seals, and can focus energy at once in all at the same time, leaving the enemy not the slightest chance of salvation. The demons’ lack of seal alerted Kronos.
Was it worth it to let such weak demons not yet ready for battle to fight? He thought to himself.Its seal began to sparkle, foreshadowing danger.
General Lacrosse, the commander of the army, suddenly entered the room. One of the most powerful generals, under his command the demons won brilliant victories, and he took the life energy of the defeated heroes. A madman walking over corpses to his goals – this is how those who were with him in battle told me about him. Lacrosse wore an imposing general’s uniform: the armor was forged right in the mouth of the volcano, it was strong, its owner was almost impossible to crush.Deep, artificially applied slits that converged in the very center of the torso emitted red demonic energy. The cloak was deep black in color, it reflected the general’s inner state – complete pitch darkness. The coat of arms of the council was on the cloak, as did every general in command of an army of demons. The helmet hid his face completely, only his eyes were visible, filled with unimaginable fury, from which they were bright red.
– It’s time! He shouted and, leaving the armory, went to the backyard of the council fortress.Everyone else followed him. In the courtyard stood a huge statue of Kelsis, the lord of hell, who replaced the past. For many years no one saw him, he left Caracas as his successor, so he could rightfully be considered the most important demon. Two teleportation portals have been created on either side of the statue. Behind the lined demons were the tombstones of the greatest demons – generals, sorcerers and others who made an invaluable contribution to the demons’ victories on the battlefield. In the center of the burials there was a spiral twisting to the top, inside which, once there was a sphere of chaos.
General Lacrosse gathered everyone to make a speech:
– Victory! Nothing could be more important! You are here for this one moment. How much did each of you sacrifice to get here? We are demons! And it’s in our blood to fight to the last breath. Today, we will come face to face with our sworn enemy – the angels.
General Lacrosse’s words were inspiring. Kronos looked around at the warriors, they were overwhelmed with courage and hatred – it was mesmerizing.Each represented a serious adversary, it seemed, together, they were impossible to break.
– Get ready! Begin! – Lacrosse was the first to pass through the portal, Caracas looked at Kronos and slowly left the hall.
After passing through the portal, a lifeless desert appeared before Kronos’s eyes. Dry, in places cracked earth and nothing else around. High, in the freshly clear sky, black clouds gathered in a few seconds and thunder rumbled several times. The thunderclaps intensified with every second, and finally, an army of angels appeared on the horizon.Ahead was the general and someone else dressed in a white robe. The young demon tried to make out his face, noticing this, he covered himself with a hood. After talking with the general angel, they shook hands, and he disappeared. In the eyes of the angel, fear appeared from the contract he had concluded. Those wearing the white robe are councilors, high angels. His presence on the battlefield was by no means accidental, thought Kronos. Council members never appear at such battles, especially with the aim of concluding any agreements. No doubt about it – this is an impostor.But then who, if not a demon, can hide under the guise of council? Thoughts about this flashed instantly, there was no time to think about anything, only a few seconds remained before the battle.
– Kronos, you will lead everyone! Looking at the demon, Lacrosse said.
– But, I have no experience in fighting. Kronos answered alarmedly.
– Silence! I’m not going to tolerate disobedience.
A horn sounded, and Kronos with other demons set off to meet fate. Everyone walked in an even formation, and he was in front.General Lacrosse, for some unknown reason, did not take part in the battle, although usually the commanders of the troops fight with everyone on an equal footing. The angels decided to open their formation and the ones in front were in disorder, disturbing the order, giving an excellent chance to attack.
– Forward brothers! Let’s destroy our enemies! Kronos shouted loudly as he could.
The battle began. The symbols on the weapons of the demons were sacred, and the blood of the defeated enemies sprinkled them. Having shed his first enemy blood, he immediately went into a rage and shouted loudly: – Lo’mar! This kindled excitement, and each demon repeated this word after the murder, it was impossible not to participate.In each blow, Kronos put the power of the sword and part of the energy of the seal – creating inevitable defeat for the enemy. Dozens of demons fell under the onslaught of angels, but the demons still defeated the enemy army. Finally raging, the demon asked the brothers to retreat, deciding to personally destroy the surviving angels. He was eager to try the sword spell, all he had to do was use the power of the seal to cast and a couple of seconds of time.
– Loxus. “After casting the spell, he released the power of the seal and began to enjoy the spectacle of destruction.Burning meteors began to fall from the sky with great speed, sweeping away everything in their path.
The earth shook from the blows, and the enemies inevitably perished. The first time he failed to reveal the meteors and use the energy to create fire warriors, it turned out to be much more difficult than expected. However, this was more than enough for victory. After all the enemies were defeated, Kronos tore the spell and stopped feeding it with his seal. Everything around was in ulcers boiling from meteors, and the blood of angels filled the earth, cracked from dryness.The brothers’ enthusiastic cries of victory were heard from everywhere. But that was not the end of the battle. The general of the angels, who, like Lacrosse, did not take part in the battle, had a choice – either to immediately accept death at the hands of the general of demons, or to fight for his life and, in case of victory, disappear away from the battlefield.
– You, come closer so that I can see how the light will fade in your eyes. – Shouted General Lacrosse to the angel.
– I’m not going to fight you Lacrosse, I challenge him! The angel pointed to Kronos.He was adamant in his decision to fight with the young demon. – If a challenge was thrown, you must accept it, and no one dares to interfere with you!
Kronos knew Lacrosse didn’t care about honor and tradition. He only wanted to take away the energy of the angel’s seal in order to become even stronger. His power often intoxicated him, and under the onslaught of his own pride, he did terrible things.
Approaching a place convenient for attack, the angel shouted, addressing me:
– If I get your head, I will be generously rewarded, because you have tremendous power, and you can turn the tide of events.I cannot afford it. Your father has killed my warriors enough, it’s time for you to answer for his sins!
The demon lost a lot of spell energy to fight him, but there was no way out. Generals can have unimaginable strength and Kronos had no idea how to fight him. He understood that it was pointless to wait for help from Lacrosse – he would, with great joy, contribute to his death, if only to get the power of the seals. Gathering all his will, the demon prepared for battle. The belief that the strength given by his father would help him survive gave him a little encouragement.
– I think you want to know the name of the one from whose hand your heart will stop. My name is Astar. I promise I will punish more than one generation like you.
– I accept your challenge Astar. So easy, I won’t give up.
Hearing that Kronos had answered the angel’s summons, Lacrosse, in a rage, shouted:
– You dare to contradict me? If you survive, I swear I will destroy you myself! I will not let such a nonentity as you stand in my way.
His words literally opened a second wind in the demon, and a new influx of energy poured out of the seal.Hatred flared up in him, and Kronos wanted only one thing – to get drunk with the blood of all enemies. The demon came closer to the Angel in order to start the fight. Astar was completely relaxed and could strike at any moment, while the demon was extremely tense and could not even stand in one place.
– Why are you so tense, relax. Dying is easier than living.
– I’m sure I won’t die. Not here, and certainly not now.
Astar struck unexpectedly for Kronos. Reflexively reacting to it, he launched a counterattack.Hit, hit, turn and hit. Their swords clashed in a beautiful dance of death, and the sharp sounds of the contact of blades rang in the silence. For Kronos, this was a rather difficult battle, because he had never fought such a serious opponent before, and from this the desire to win only became stronger. The demon felt that he was beginning to weaken, after the battle with the detachment of angels and his blows noticeably lost their power.
– What is a demon? Are you ready to give up?
After another heavy series of blows, Kronos collapsed from powerlessness.At that very moment, Astar struck a backhand, and without calculating the strength, he lost his balance. The demon thrust the sword forward, expecting that it would at least partially inflict damage on the angel, but he swooped right into the edge of the sword. Blood immediately gushed to the ground from the pierced enemy. It was noticeable how the light began to fade in his eyes. Kronos had only to connect his seal with the seal of the angel and fully absorb its power in order to restore the supply of his energy.
– Do you understand that in a fair fight, the outcome would have been different? I succumbed because a councilor ordered it.He said that my death would not be in vain and would affect the course of events, and you are just a pawn in a chess game that has no end. There will be no winners or losers here, but only endless pain that will poison your heart … forever. – Astar uttered in an intermittent whisper.
– Perhaps your words make sense, but as long as I live, I am firmly convinced that I will become a great warrior. And no one will stand in my way!
After the words of the angel, the taste of victory was no longer so sweet.Kronos crossed his seal with the seal of Astar and completely deprived him of his vitality. The fight was over. Through the enthusiastic cries of his brothers, he heard the order of his general to retreat and return with the others to the portal. Lacrosse was extremely displeased and looked at the demon with particular contempt. He opened a portal for teleportation home, the surviving warriors swiftly left the battlefield. When Kronos had a couple of steps to reach the portal, Lacrosse stopped him:
– I apologize for my pride, selfishness and weakness.If not for you, we could have lost many of our brothers today, but you, having taken control of the situation, turned the tide in our favor. Thank you. The Council already knows what happened, so you and I are going to them.
– There are no other options.
– Sooner or later we would be called to account for today’s events. Lacrosse continued.
After closing the portal behind the soldiers, the general created a new one into which they both entered.
I wonder what the council wants to tell me.Thank you for your courage on the battlefield? – thought Kronos.
When the portal opened, they found themselves not in the council chamber, but in a place where no one would want to appear in any case – a labyrinth of damned souls.
This is a huge place where demon duels took place. Conflicts and hostilities were resolved here, far from the public. Only one could get out of this labyrinth – that was the main law of this place. Tall sepia stone walls streaked with dried blood created parallel and intersecting corridors.The bones of the duelists crunched under their feet, and a huge, black funnel whirled in the sky, which took the soul of the defeated demon and tormented him until the end of time. In the center of the labyrinth there was a square on which the battle began, but did not always end there. Kronos was sure that the advice did not mean a meeting here, so it would be worth expecting a duel. The general disappeared. Unbeknownst to the demon, Lacrosse has the ability to teleport over short distances without a portal. He appeared not far from Kronos, in a more convenient position to attack.
– You ruin all my plans, upstart! Who do you think you are, a real commander? The general shouted in a ferocious voice.
– A minute ago, you yourself praised me for doing the right thing. Have you changed your mind now and decided to punish me for your mistakes? Or maybe you want to take my conquered power to become even more reckless?
– Let’s see if you’re right when you lie on the ground, choking on your own blood!
– There is only one way to find out who is right and who is wrong.To battle! – Bravely answered Kronos.
He understood that the general was on the verge of transformation. This is the most powerful form of combat, when the demon turns to his true self and tears down the barrier separating it from the pseudo shell. Each one could have completely different, depending on the supply of internal energy and seals that the demon possessed. Unfortunately, in his youth, Kronos did not yet have time to learn the art of transformation, so there was no chance to survive in this duel.Despite the fact that he absorbed the energy of the general of angels, it does not immediately enter his possession, but only after a few days, until he finally gets used to the new body. The blood in my veins boiled with tension, the air was charged with hatred and seemed to be burning, it was hard to breathe.
The only chance is to kill the general as quickly as possible before he transforms. Kronos decided to attack first, but did not have time. The general very unexpectedly appeared next to him and immediately began to attack. The young demon had never met such fury.Lacrosse’s eyes, covered in blood, seemed to be devouring him. Hit. He deflected it and felt how much weakened after the previous battle.
“It’s my turn,” Kronos shouted through clenched teeth. Pain overwhelmed his body, but it was impossible to give up.
– Beat, if you are capable of anything else! – The general continued to provoke.
Kronos swung to strike, but Lacrosse disappeared and kicked him in the back. Flying forward, the demon fell onto a stone slab. Unbearable pain swept through his entire body, but it was impossible to show the enemy how strong the blow was.He got to his feet and smiled at the general.
– Is that all? Is that what you call Lacrosse to drown in blood? I am very sorry that you are not responsible for your words.
– Oh, you puppy, well, what did you ask for!
In the next instant, Lacrosse began to release energy to complete the transformation. It was a great chance to attack. Without delay, Kronos rushed to the attack to pierce the general.
– Do you think I’m completely out of my mind? – shouted Lacrosse.
The thought flashed through Kronos’s mind that it was all a trick.Lacrosse gathered energy to create an explosive flash for the attack.
Energy emanated from the demon, forming a rounded shape. After releasing enough of it, he unleashed the power of the spell on Kronos. The explosive force was so high that he was thrown a great distance from the general. Flying into the wall, a pike sticking out of it, pierced through Kronos’s shoulder. He found himself hanging over a pile of skulls, risking leaving his own there.
– Your father was really an excellent comrade and warrior, it’s a shame that he had such a little son like you.It’s a pity he got in the way of the council, and we had to get rid of him.
– What are you talking about? My father died in battle with the angels!
– He refused to carry out the order of Caracas.
– I don’t believe you!
– When I kill you, you will see everything and I promise you will like the sight!
Lacrosse began his transformation, at this very moment he was extremely vulnerable. The influx of hatred from his words gave Kronos the strength to free himself, to fall off the wall and fall to the ground.He heard a terrible roar ahead of him. It was Lacrosse. His transformation was complete, and the demon had to face the form of his true self, anything could be expected. A moment later, a huge, three-headed hydra, enveloped in red, demonic energy, appeared before his eyes. It was an eerie sight. The transformation form was immaterial, inside the form was visible a general, from whom the energy emanated, creating a hydra. Without thinking about what to do, Kronos ran deep into the labyrinth to hide and buy himself a few minutes of time, to think about what to do next.The earth shook with the footsteps of the hydra as it prowled in search of prey. Sniffing, hiding, waiting for the demon to show its presence. At that moment, the demon was bandaging a broken knee after falling onto a stone slab, tearing off a piece of cloth from his cloak. He tried to remember what he could stop a demon in transformation. Father’s stories about military campaigns, found artifacts surfaced, but it was all wrong. – Father talked about transformation, but what exactly? – Tried to remember Kronos, but could not concentrate, Lacrosse in the guise of a hydra was somewhere nearby.
– How long will you hide from death? Meet her with dignity, pitiful demon. – The changed voice of the general sounded.
Kronos was still sitting on the cold ground, his back against the wall, trying to remember at least something about the transformation of demons. Pages from educational manuscripts flashed through my head. – Here it is! I remembered. – He said in a whisper. The father said that when the demon is in a state of transformation, his armor is multiplied, but there is a chance to pierce it.In order to do this, it was necessary to remove the stage control from the demon. When a demon conducts a transformation, he associates the energy of his seal with a spell. This connection is very subtle and if it is broken, it will take a lot of energy to keep the true guise. When the energy is close to zero, the demon will be forced to break the spell and return to its previous form. If Lacrosse was pissed off, he would lose control, the demon thought.
– I can feel your fear! Are you unable to accept your end with dignity? Lacrosse’s voice was everywhere.
– Why did you decide that you should be afraid? Kronos jumped up and ran through the maze in search of a new refuge. – Are you going to look for me or not? You are a great general and I am a trifle compared to you. Why can’t you find me?
– You challenge an unimaginable force! I wanted to give you a quick death, but you deserve the most terrible torment!
Kronos ran through the narrow corridors of the labyrinth, hoping to piss off the general. The anxiety in his chest continued.
– Lacrosse well, where are you? I can’t wait to die!
– AAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRR Your end … – The loud roar of the three-headed hydra echoed over the labyrinth.
Suddenly the demon heard the noise of crumbling walls behind him.
– I will find you! – Lacrosse shouted furiously, continuing to sweep away everything in its path.
After running out of another corridor, Kronos came face to face with the true form of the general.
– There you are! I thought forever, would you hide?
– I’m afraid to disappoint you Lacrosse, but you do not inspire fear.Rather, pity from his irrepressible pride that destroys you from within.
– Don’t you dare contradict me!
One of the hydra’s heads tore a piece of the wall out of the ground and threw it at the demon. The next attack was not long in coming. Two heads intertwined with each other and released a huge column of flame, at that moment Kronos managed to hide behind one of the walls. Trying to burn it, Lacrosse emitted more and more energy, as intended. A few seconds later, one of the hydra’s heads broke through the obstacle.Dodging, the demon continued to tempt fate, in search of the cherished moment to attack. Barely noticing him, the hydra again began to attack with flames. Fire in the form of balls fell to the ground, creating explosive flashes. Dodging as much as he could, the demon tried to get closer to the general in order to stab him. But I fell into a trap. Not noticing the drawn symbol on the ground, he found himself in a sphere from which there was no way out. Trying to get out of it, the demon was only wasting energy, apparently it really was the end.
– So you got Kronos. Now I will destroy you. – The general gloated.
The flame, created by all the heads of the hydra, hovered around the sphere, swirling into a vortex. It was getting harder and harder to breathe, and Kronos fell to his knees from impotence.
– This would not have happened if she had made way for me, allowing Astar to kill himself. But instead, you took away the power that rightfully belongs to me! Are you ready for eternal torment inside the funnel?
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The atmosphere in the dressing room was tense, the air seemed to be electrified by the overwhelming adrenaline.These minutes before the coach says his parting words and we finally enter the field are terrible and at the same time they are the best. Any outcome seems possible: victory and defeat, pride and shame, triumph and disappointment. At this time, the team spirit is strongest and the motivation is higher.
Outside, one can hear the chants of classmates, as well as of the enemy’s fans. It’s hard to believe now that just five years ago no one was interested in lacrosse at Maxton Hall. It was then a sport for losers.Those who did not excel in rugby or football were sent to the lacrosse team, so it was very weak. A crowd of skinny adolescents with pimply faces and long limbs, which they did not know what to do with.
Then I thought: it will be fun to sign up there. First of all, I hoped to bring my father to white heat. And I never expected that I might like it. Or that within a few weeks, because of vanity, you will want to do something from this team. I convinced my friends to join us, thoroughly intimidated the rector of Lexington with the wrath of his parents if he did not get us a good coach, and ordered the development of a sports uniform from our best designer.
For the first time in my life, I was so passionate. And my efforts paid off. Now, five years later, after many hours of weekly training, blood, sweat, tears, broken bones and three championships won, we are finally worthy of the front sign of our fucking school.
We went out of our way to achieve all this. And I am filled with pride whenever I see the determined faces of the team before the game.
This is how it is now.
True, today another feeling resonates within.Dark and painful, which made it difficult for me to put protective gear on my head for the first time in all these years.
This will be the first game in my last school year.
When the season ends, it will be over for me too. Lacrosse is just going to be part of a slow countdown that I can’t stop. No matter how hard I try, it’s all in vain.
– So what? Ren pushed his shoulder.
With difficulty, I dropped my thoughts. There is still time – there is a whole year ahead, during which I can do what I want.With a strained smile, I turned to him:
– We’ll show them, those Eastview assholes.
– Chur, McCormack is mine, – Alistair reacted quickly, as if he was just waiting for a prearranged signal. – I have to get even with him.
– Alistair, – began Kesh. He was rubbing the bridge of his nose, in the very spot that had been broken last year. – Fuck him. – Alistair’s intonation and meaningful look left no doubt that it was not the first time they had spoken about it.
“No,” he replied succinctly.
McCormack, who, unfortunately, had the same name as me, deliberately punched Kesha in the face with the stick last game as soon as he took off his helmet. I still remember the shock when Kesh fell to the ground. His nose was bleeding onto his tights. And I remember those minutes when he lay unconscious in front of us.
Although McCormack was suspended for the next three games, the thought of his comrade’s broken face raised anger in me – as, obviously, Alistair, who was still looking resolutely at Kesh.
“Just don’t do rash things,” Kesh said, pulling on his blue tights.Then he tied his hair in a high, casual bun and closed the cabinet.
“You know him,” Ren said, leaning his elbows on the locker room with a grin.
– I don’t care if I get banned from the game for the rest of the season. McCormack will be responsible for everything. – Alistair patted Kesh on the shoulder.
– Say thank you that I will stand up for your honor.
Before he could remove his hand, Kesh grabbed it and held it for a moment:
– I’m telling you seriously.
Alistair narrowed his amber eyes:
– Me too.
They stared at each other for too long, and the atmosphere intensified even more. But time intervened.
“Save your strength for the game,” I said in such a tone that it immediately became clear that I was addressing them not as a friend, but as a captain. Two pairs of angry eyes rushed at me, but before the guys could say anything, I clapped my hands loudly.
The team immediately gathered in the middle of the dressing room. I pulled the number “17” leotard over my head. The fabric was so familiar that it was part of me.That dark feeling came back to me, but I suppressed it and tried to focus on Coach Freeman, who came out of his dressing room and headed towards us. He was a tall, lanky man who, because of his long limbs, was mistaken for a distance runner or athlete rather than a lacrosse player. He put a cap on his thinning blond hair, adjusted his visor and put his arms around the shoulders of me – the captain, and Cyril – the deputy.
He glanced around at the team.
– For some of you this season is the first, for some of you the last.The overall goal remains the championship, he growled. Everything else is secondary. So look, do not disappoint.
Coach Freeman is not particularly eloquent here, but a couple of his words are enough to cause loud, approving cries in our ranks.
“This season should be the best in the history of Maxton Hall,” I added a little louder than the coach. – Do you agree?
The guys shouted back in unison, but Cyril didn’t think their answer was loud enough. He put his hand to his ear:
The roar this time was so loud that it rang in my ears – perfect.
After that we put on our helmets and grabbed the sticks. The way out of the locker room through a narrow tunnel was like diving under water – the noise outside came in muffled, as if it were pressing on my ears. I tightened my grip on the club and led the team onto the field.
The stands were crowded. People cheered as we ran out onto the field and the cheerleaders danced. Music thundered loudly from the speakers, and the earth trembled underfoot. I breathed fresh air through my lungs and felt so alive for the first time in weeks.
While the substitutes and the coach were heading to the edge of the court, we lined up in the center of the field, face to face with the opposing team, which looked equally enthusiastic.
“This will be the right game,” Cyril, standing next to me, said, voicing my thoughts.
While we waited for the judge, I looked around the stands. From here I could see very few people except Lydia. She, as always, sat with her friends at the very top and acted as if she was not interested in this sight. I looked at the edge of the pitch, studying the other team’s substitutes, then at their coach, who was just on his way to greet Freeman.
Then my attention was attracted by a girl who approached the trainers. After exchanging a few words with them, she showed them something in her hands. The wind blew and I could see her face behind her hair.
I cannot afford to be seen next to you.
This memory was like a blow in the stomach. Nobody has ever told me that.
As a rule, the opposite is true. People strive to be noticed next to me at any cost. From the first day I came to this school, classmates followed my heels and tried to get attention.You can’t get away from this if your name is Beaufort. Ever since mom’s relatives founded a fashion house for traditional menswear one hundred and fifty years ago and created a multibillion-dollar business as it developed, there has not been a single person in the country who did not know our last name. Beaufort is associated with wealth. With influence. Power. And there are enough people in Maxton Hall who think that I could give them all of this – or even a small part – if they flatter them properly.
I don’t have enough fingers to count all the cases when, after a stormy party, they slipped the sketches of costumes to me.How many times have they talked to me under some pretext, so that during the conversation they casually clarify the contact details of the parents. How often they tried to get into the circle of my friends, so that later they could pass on inside information about me and Lydia to the press. The snapshot from Ren’s sixteenth birthday two years ago, in which I sniff drugs, is just one example of many. Not to mention what Lydia had to endure.
Therefore, I choose my friends carefully. Ren, Alistair, Cyril and Kesh do not need my money – they already have enough of this stuff.Alistair and Cyril come from the Old English aristocracy, Ren’s father made a fortune in stock companies, and Kesh’s dad is a successful film producer.
People are looking for our attention.
All except …
My gaze settled on Ruby. Her dark, wind-blown hair gleamed in the sun. She struggled with her bangs, smoothing it down with her hand, although it was useless: after a few seconds, her hair was blown back in the wind. I’m pretty sure I had never seen her before this incident with Lydia.I wonder why.
I really can’t afford to be seen next to you.
Everything about her aroused disbelief in me — especially her piercing green eyes. I just wanted to approach her in order to understand: does she look at other people the same way as at me, with fire and contempt in her eyes?
This girl saw my sister cuddling with the teacher. I wonder what her intentions are. Waiting for the right moment to detonate the bomb? This would not be the first screaming headline about my family.
Mortimer Beaufort has an affair with a twenty-year-old!
Cornelia Beaufort is depressed!
Will addiction kill him? James Beaufort is an addict!
After dinner with an employee, my father was credited with an affair, and after a quarrel between the parents, my mother was diagnosed with severe depression. They made me a junkie on the verge of an overdose, who needs to be saved. It’s hard to even imagine what the journalists will learn if they sniff out about Lydia and Mr. Sutton.
I kept looking at Ruby.She took a camera out of her backpack and filmed the coaches shaking hands. My gloves creaked as I gripped the club so tightly. I misjudged Ruby. I don’t know if she told me the truth and if there is a cold calculation behind this.
Maybe I should have offered her more money. Or she needs something else, and she is biding her time to demand …
I didn’t like the fact that the fate of my family – Lydia in particular – was in the hands of this girl.
I cannot afford to be seen next to you.
|Then he tried to pull ahead on human rights and rake his bow, which lacrosse attempted to ram tirelessly.||Pellew then attempted to pull ahead of Droits de l’Homme and rake her bow, to which Lacrosse responded by attempting to ram Indefatigable.|
|Art creates what I call an enchanted life that helps our existence and pushes, motivates, and inspires us to go forward and express ourselves without metrics or judgments.||Art creates what I call a conjured life, which helps our existence and pushes, motivates and inspires us to dwell and express ourselves without metrics or calculations.|
|With a hand strobe, they can explore the sculpture and see thousands of cage-sized robots working hard, jumping back and forth on the optic nerve, placed in the retina to repair it.||With a handheld strobe, they can explore the sculpture, and discover thousands of cell-sized robots hard at work, leaping in and out of the optic nerve, being deployed to the retina to repair it.|
|So we need to find a way to have meaningful conversations that will move our nation forward, and we can’t wait any longer for elected officials to raise our culture.||So we must find a way to engage in meaningful conversations that are going to move us forward as a nation, and we can no longer wait for our elected officials to elevate our national discourse.|
|Are you and your city ready to take a step forward?||Are you and your city ready to step up?|
|I could also move the lens a little to the right, and you would move backward, and the people in the back would come forward.||I could move the lens a little to the right, and you would go back and the folks in the background would come out.|
|If you could take a closer look at human nature, would that be a step forward?||If we could implant that more nuanced view of human nature in every design, would that be a step forward?|
|It turns out that the seers of Ancient Greece had a secret key that will show us the way forward.||It turns out that the oracle of ancient Greece holds the secret key that shows us the path forward.|
|But fast forward to the end of our century, under normal conditions, and we will see that climate patterns begin to diverge.||But fast-forward to the end of the century under a business-as-usual scenario, and climate models don’t really agree anymore.|
|You can dash forward enjoying, say, the beautiful ocean views and take photos right from the window – it’s very easy – or you can get out of your way by pressing the brake pedal to get out of the car, take off your shoes and socks, walk on the sand, feel the sand seep through your toes, walk up to the ocean and let the waves wash your feet.||You can either glide by, past, say, the beautiful ocean scenes and take snaps out the window – that’s the easy thing to do – or you can go out of your way to move the car to the side of the road, to push that brake pedal, to get out, take off your shoes and socks, take a couple of steps onto the sand, feel what the sand feels like under your feet, walk to the ocean, and let the ocean lap at your ankles.|
|We have made progress in all areas of life except our humanity.||We have seen advances in every aspect of our lives – except our humanity.|
|But we have already started to move forward quite convincingly – enough to believe that we can still succeed.||But we were starting to make some really quite convincing progress, just enough to make you believe that maybe – maybe we could get there.|
|Your obvious orientation of attention, the direction of your gaze is forward, but at the same time the hidden orientation constantly scans the space around you, although in reality you are not looking around.||Your overt attention, your direction of the eyes, are in front, but that’s your covert attention which is constantly scanning the surrounding area, where you don’t actually look at them.|
|Of course, in summer, children run up and down the fountain, and in winter they fill up the ice rink, but the comfort of leisurely walks is lacking.||I mean, sure, in summertime kids are running back and forth through the fountain and there’s ice-skating in the winter, but it lacks the informality of a leisurely hangout.|
|She moved back and forth, and with every movement my classmates one by one stopped reading and started looking at me.||In and out it went, and with every stroke, one by one, my classmates stopped concentrating on their reading and started looking at me.|
|We have always moved forward, overcoming pain.||Walking through pain is what we have always done.|
|Two years of independent assessments show that our children are eliminating the loss of knowledge over the summer and taking a step forward one month in math and two months in reading.||Two years of independent evaluations tell us that our kids eliminate the summer learning loss and make growth of one month in math and two months in reading.|
|Now fast forward the story a few years forward, I wrote a novel about a man who, among other things, beats his wife and who does not end very well.||Now fast forward to some years later, I wrote a novel about a man who among other things beats his wife and whose story doesn’t end very well.|
|It can be something personal or for work, or it can be a global issue, and imagine how far ahead you tend to think about solutions to this problem.||It could be personal, it could be at work or it could be move-the-needle world stuff, and think about how far out you tend to think about the solution set for that.|
|When we think about the future, 10, 15 years ahead, let’s imagine what it will be like.||When we think about the future, 10, 15 years out, give me a vision of what the future is.|
|Thinking about America, he looked far ahead.||But his definition of America was very future-oriented.|
|At the same time, we cannot let tradition prevent us from moving forward.||At the same time, can’t allow the attachment to old customs impede us from moving forward.|
|Although they change, the trajectories of most can be predicted for decades to come.||Although it varies from asteroid to asteroid, the paths of most asteroids can be predicted for dozens of years.|
|Well then go ahead, please support women creators, buy their work, let them know their voice is heard, look for venues where they can express themselves.||Well then, please go forward, support women artists, buy their work, insist that their voices are heard, find platforms on which their voices will be made.|
|Then I pulled myself together, felt the nozzle and did what the fireman had to do: I rushed forward, turned on the water and put out the fire myself.||And then I picked myself up, I groped for the nozzle, and I did what a firefighter was supposed to do: I lunged forward, opened up the water and I tackled the fire myself.|
|Gliding through the water, he uses his paddle legs to propel himself forward.||When it’s swimming in the water, it uses its paddle-like legs to push itself forward.|
|The front and back of the mouth are open and remain open enough for the robot to paddle forward.||The front mouth and the bottom mouth open, and it will stay opened enough, then the robot will start to row forward.|
|Aren’t we supposed to go ahead with our advanced essence and throw useless concepts like race into the dustbin of history?||Shouldn’t we go ahead with our enlightened, progressive selves and relegate useless concepts like race to the dustbins of history?|
|Why aren’t you moving forward?||Why can’t you move on?|
|Let’s fast forward 15 years.||Let’s fast-forward just 15 years from now.|
|That year we threw off the shackles and boldly moved forward, in the same year we saw the muzzle of a gun, sang about cranes in the sky, we dived and soared, caught gold in hijabs, collecting death threats, we knew that we were patriots, They said: We are 35, it’s time to settle down, find a partner.||The year we lost our inhibition and moved with courageous abandon was also the year we stared down barrels, sang of cranes in skies, ducked and parried, caught gold in hijab, collected death threats, knew ourselves as patriots, said, We ‘ re 35 now, time we settled down and found a running mate.|
|Say: Daughter, I stood there, face like a dagger, rushing back and forth, making room for you.||Say, Daughter, I stood there with the moment drawn on my face like a dagger, and flung it back at itself, slicing space for you.|
|This is how science moves forward, this is how science learns.||This is how science moves forward, this is how science learns.|
|Not only did I sit motionless, I did not communicate with people at all, although hundreds of thousands of people passed by, who, like me, were looking ahead with concentration to the roar of music.||Not only was I not moving a muscle, I had no social interaction with the hundreds of thousands of people that were hurtling past me, like me, with their eyes faced forward and their music blaring.|
|Conceptually, this was a giant leap forward.||Now, conceptually, this was a massive leap forward.|
|Related to this is how we teach children in schools, how we encourage innovation in the work environment, but thinking about play and fun in this way also helps us look ahead.||Now, I think this has implications for how we teach kids in school and how we encourage innovation in our workspaces, but thinking about play and delight this way also helps us detect what’s coming next.|
|In this context, many people say: Come on, dollar!||A lot of people in that context say, Let’s go dollar.|
|Go New York Real Estate!||Let’s go New York real estate.|
|When you look at trust from this angle, it becomes clear why it has the unique ability to help us deal with uncertainty, rely on strangers, keep moving forward.||Now, when you view trust through this lens, it starts to explain why it has the unique capacity to enable us to cope with uncertainty, to place our faith in strangers, to keep moving forward.|
|The sergeant, pleased with the unexpected promotion, stepped forward.||The sergeant, pleased at his promotion, stepped forward.|
|She awkwardly stretches her legs forward and touches her ankles.||She brings her legs forward awkwardly and touches her ankles.|
|Someone grabbed his collar and pulled him forward.||A hand grabbed his collar and hauled him up.|
|Then, with a jerk of the chains, I was lifted to my feet and dragged forward.||Then I was jerked to my feet and dragged forward.|
|Then Epini leaned forward sharply and blew out both candles.||Then Epiny suddenly leaned forward and blew out both candles.|
|She crawled to the very edge and held up her weapon.||She crept to the edge, and reached out.|
|He jumped forward and struck a cold, hard hand.||He lunged, chopped down at the cold hard arm.|
|In the back seat, Arkin Ruark perked up and leaned forward.||In the back seat, Arkin Ruark leaned forward eagerly.|
|Turning Leaf still moving up to the second spot.||Turning Leaf still moving up to the second spot.|
|But suddenly Ralph roared with rage and lunged forward.||But Ralph suddenly bellowed with rage and lunged forward.|
|She lunged forward and grabbed the hook that was lying on the deck.||She sprang and caught the wooden handle of the gaff.|
|Its incredibility fights my skepticism and propels me forward.||Its implausibility batters against my skepticism and drives me onward.|
|I pushed forward and squatted down next to her.||I pushed through and squatted down next to her.|
|Randy stepped forward and stepped onto the low parapet of the roof.||Now Randy stepped up onto the building’s low parapet.|
|Paul leaned forward and grabbed a mug of tea.||Pol leaned forward and raised his mug of tea.|
|Put the pens, forwarding the work||Put down your pen, and pass the papers forward|
|Dachshund took two steps forward and bit him again.||The dachshund took two steps forward and nipped him again.|
|I peered around the corner, then carefully slid forward.||I peered around the corner, then cautiously crept forth.|
|Your father would have moved forward with respect and care.||Your father would venture forth with respect and caution.|
|Fearing for his fragile Mummy, Henry rushed forward.||Henry pushed forward, fearing for his fragile mummy.|
|We let him out into the yard, and he barked, running along the fence back and forth, back and forth.||We’d put him in the backyard and he used to run up and down, back and forth along the fence barking.|
Vanity read online by Jane Fazer (Page 22)
Rupert grabbed Octavia by the shoulder.
– Stop it! The angry whisper frightened the scream even more. – For God’s sake, don’t laugh!
But Octavia could not stop. Tears ran down her cheeks.Laughter rose to the throat and burst out in a stormy stream. Rupert shook her once or twice and shook her until finally, gasping for air, Octavia went limp in his arms.
Only then did he loosen his grip. Octavia leaned back in her chair, her head drooping limply, her chest gurgling.
Rupert stared at his wife. He waited for her to come to her senses. He felt sick from resentment and rage. A picture rose before my eyes – a brother in an underwear … And she, my God, can still joke about it. Laugh at how Philip almost …
Rupert put his hand over his mouth.For a few moments it seemed to him that he was about to vomit.
– Why didn’t you tell me anything? He asked when Octavia caught her breath a little. “I told you to talk about everything you do with Wyndham. Inform about all your plans. Do not go anywhere with him without my permission!
Octavia slowly raised her head – her eyes were empty. When she spoke, Rupert wondered if she heard him at all?
– I almost managed to take the ring. It’s in the vest.
Having taken it off, he threw it on the floor …
– Shut up! Rupert closed his eyes, trying to stop the flow of pictures that he could not bear. But Octavia continued as if she hadn’t heard him at all:
– I was looking for an opportunity to pick it up. And then Frank fell into the pipe, and I decided that there was a chance. But Philip began to beat the boy, they had to stop him. So nothing came of the vest. Sorry. – She began to piteously apologize. – Next time …
Octavia was unable to finish: Rupert grabbed her by the shoulders, his fingers digging into her body, his face close to hers.
– Shut up and listen to me. Why didn’t you tell me about the date? I told you to. Why did you disobey?
Octavia blinked as Rupert’s words finally pierced the thick veil of the nightmare that surrounded her.
– Why should I tell you? You don’t explain your plans to me.
– These are two different things. He shook his wife hard again, trying his best to get through to her mind. – We agreed from the very beginning that you will obey me about everything. Why did you break the agreement?
Octavia flinched as his fingers tightened around her shoulders, but her husband’s anger did not seem to touch her.It rolled down like water droplets from the skin. His worries did not concern her, only her own pain delivered. And now, again on the verge of hysteria, she realized that it was she who almost had to go through. And this horror was only postponed for a while.
– What would change if I told you? – In a quiet voice there was an undisguised bitterness. – I did what I was contracted for. You knew perfectly well that this was going to happen. So what difference does it make when? So that you sit and imagine how there and what? The voice suddenly sounded louder.- Is that what you wanted? You bought a whore for money. She does her job. But this seemed to you not enough. I still wanted to have fun, to amuse my sick imagination!
Where did these terrible words come from? They escaped her lips like poison from the sting of a viper, but Octavia couldn’t tell why or why. Inside it seethed and froth, and the poison found its way free.
Rupert turned gray.
Octavia fell silent, shocked by her own words. The last rays of the dying sun cast long shadows on the table.Rupert unclenched his fingers and stepped back.
– How could you say that? Now his voice was surprised and quiet.
– You told me from the very beginning that only my body would be involved in a relationship with Philip, and my soul and mind would remain intact. Only whores do that, ”Octavia explained evenly. – Why pretend, you hired a public girl; And what else could you think of me after I ended up in your bed?
Octavia turned away. Feelings spilled over, which before, even in the most hidden corners of her soul, she was afraid to put into words, and the girl felt devastated.
Rupert sighed heavily:
– There was nothing shameful about that first night.
– Of course it was. I was acting like a whore. We both understand perfectly well: if it were not so, you would not have offered me to seduce your enemy.
Rupert ruffled his hair. He went to the window, stood for a minute, watching the blue twilight quickly descend on the ground.
Octavia sat motionless behind him. Her behavior that first night was undoubtedly shameless, but she does not regret it.What happened happened.
Rupert was the first to speak very quietly:
– You are not in the least responsible for what happened at the Royal Oak.
– You said yourself, I called you.
– I called, but not of my own free will. He still gazed blindly into the night falling to the ground.
– I don’t understand. Octavia suddenly went cold. It seemed to her that something terrible lurked in the room, much more terrible than the words that had escaped from her.
– Remember the hot punch?
– Yes.With misgivings, Octavia clutched at her throat.
– Then, probably, she did not forget, as she said, that it would be nice to add carnations to it?
– I remember. – Fear, along with a shadow, huddled in the corners. Rupert turned around.
– The clove contained a substance that helps to relax … removes all self-restraints, enhances sensuality.
Octavia stared blankly at her husband. She remembered her feelings: a special excitement, anxiety, a failure in a delightful, sensual world, without mental and mental barriers.The night of love seemed like a fairy tale to her.
– Did you get me drunk? – There was a doubt in the question, as if the girl could not believe what she was asking.
– So … means raped.
– You could say so.
– But why? She spoke it very quietly, but with incredible force.
Rupert returned to the table and sat down. The flame of the candle suddenly sharply outlined the wrinkles that appeared at the mouth and eyes.
“I needed your help,” he answered bluntly, deciding that he had deceived her enough already.- I wanted to tie you to me. I wanted you to know the joy of love.
“I see,” Octavia said and sipped the port. She hoped that the wine would melt the lump in her throat, relieve the heaviness in her chest. – And you did it.
Rupert reached for her limp hand on the table, but she jerked it back as if she had been stung.
– I want you to believe me. Since then, I don’t think so anymore.
– And what does it matter? Octavia said indifferently, but she wanted to cry, scream, claw out his eyes.
The girl stood up.
– Sorry, I want to sleep. If this is so important to you, I will notify you about the next date.
– Octavia …
But in the rustle of silks she was already walking towards the exit, and a second later the door slammed shut behind her.
Rupert burst into curses and could not stop until he uttered all the curses he knew. Then he refilled his glass and drank in gloomy silence.
Things were going worse than ever, and he did not know how to fix them. If Octavia does not forgive him, there is nothing to do, she will have to let her go.
He got up and left the living room. At Octavia’s door, a hand was about to knock, but Rupert changed his mind, afraid of being rejected. He just walked in without further ado.
Octavia was sitting by the window. When she turned around, Rupert saw tears in her eyes.
– My dear! – He reached out to her, wanted to comfort her, stroke her.
– Don’t touch! The girl covered herself with her palms, as if defending herself.
Rupert’s hands fell limp at this gesture. He stood and looked down at his wife, feeling helpless, as in childhood, when impotence overtook him from the intrigues of his twin.And he could not get rid of the thought: what he did with Octavia was worthy not of him, but of Philip.
“I will not touch you,” he said after a little pause. “I just came by to say that you are free from your obligations. I will do everything that is required of me, but you will not have to do anything else. Live here if you wish, and I will take care of you and your father until I finally deal with Rigby and Lacrosse and return your fortune.
Octavia shook her head. Before, she would have given a lot to hear these words.But now the girl realized that they were forced to say a troubled conscience and shame – if, of course, Rupert was capable of such feelings. And she would like him to suffer from shame.
– No, I will not give up on my obligations and will get a ring for you from Philip Windham. We have entered into a business agreement and from now on we will be limited only to it.
Her face became determined and her eyes went cold. Tears dried up, except those that flowed from the heart. So she mourned the grief and betrayal that befell her.But those tears were not visible to him.
“Good,” Rupert agreed calmly. He offended Octavia and lost all rights to her. There was nothing to add to what he said about their first night at the Royal Oak.
He reminded himself that by this moment many years had passed, and now the hour is not far off when Philip Wyndham again learns of his brother’s existence. If Octavia wants to help him, he will accept her help. He already knew how to get what he needed.
– But we will have a different plan.- The words sounded abruptly, behind an imperious tone, he tried to hide his wounds. Nothing to pour out your own grief on Octavia. – A few days ago I decided to change it. Therefore, if you told me about today’s date, I would say that there is no need for it.
“Sorry, I didn’t know,” Octavia replied with bitter sarcasm.
– I would have known if I had followed my instructions exactly. Rupert’s lips pressed tightly together. “But what’s done is done. And now we need to lure Philip into the Wasteland of Putney.
– Are you going to rob him there?
– Got it right.
– But he recognizes you.
– Still, the risk is very high.
– No more than usual.
The girl did not answer a word, and Rupert had no choice but to bow and head for the door.
– Good night, Octavia.
When did he decide to change the plan and not sacrifice her? Is it really true even before the quarrel?
But even so, what does it matter? What could matter after what he confessed to?
The hired carriage slowed down and stopped at an intersection.Dirk Rigby and Hector Lacrosse simultaneously grabbed the hilts of their swords as soon as they heard the shrieks of the raging crowd outside. Faces appeared in the windows on both sides – peasant skinny faces flushed with alcohol, faces distorted with anger, grinning with anticipation of Sunday fun.
– Down with the Papacy! Down with the papacy! They shouted, and the individual exclamations merged into a single chorus that filled the stifling air of a summer day.
“Damn it, we’re in trouble,” Hector muttered, half pulling his sword out of its sheath.
– Don’t, – Dirk whined. – It will only provoke them. – He lowered the glass. – That’s right, good citizens! Down with the papacy! And waved his hand to a sea of heads. – No indulgence for Catholics! Down with the papacy!
An approving roar of many sips was stirred in response:
– Let them pass!
The charioteer also screamed at the top of his mighty lungs:
– Down with the Papacy!
The crowd screamed in approval again and parted slightly, leaving just enough room for the frightened horses to move towards London Bridge.The driver snapped the whip, the carriage picked up speed and was soon far from the crowd.
Hector leaned back in his seat and wiped his forehead with a scented handkerchief.
– Vile creatures! For whom do they take themselves, that they dare to detain noble people?
Dirk closed the window again. The air in the carriage warmed up and seemed stale, but the London stench was even more unbearable in the midst of a hot summer day.
“We need to call the army, put Lord George in shackles,” he announced.“This man is crazy… lost his mind.
“But he knows how to warm up the crowd,” Hector protested. – And wherever he goes, the same thing happens. Everyone is in a hurry to listen to him, and from the gatherings they leave, inspired by the antipapal fervor.
Dirk grimaced, but didn’t answer, then leaned forward and looked out the window. Ahead loomed a red brick warehouse, and beneath it the muddy waters of the Thames, which seemed gray under the dim light of the hazy sun, drifted unhurriedly. The carriage rumbled across the bridge, turned into the courtyard and stopped in front of a barred door.
The riders got down to the ground and looked around. It was as calm around as it had been on two previous visits. They last attended a meeting of Tadeusz Nielsen’s Investor Committee, and today they were called to an emergency meeting on new construction projects on Arklane.
– Wait for you, gentlemen? – asked the driver and spat savoryly, trying to get into the gutter passing in the middle of the paved courtyard.
– We will stay here no more than half an hour. Hector grimaced.
– Okay then. The driver settled down in his seat again and took a burnt pipe from the bottomless pocket of his long coat. – It would be good if those jokers have calmed down. – He lit stinky tobacco. “Remember me, they’re still going to cause trouble. This Lord George Gordon had an awl in the bottom. Forgive me, gentlemen, to speak so freely about the nobility.
None of the riders honored him with an answer. They turned away and began to make their way through the yard littered with all kinds of rubbish.
Ned opened the door for them.Cave darkness stretched behind him.
– Here you are, – he hummed and, pointing his thumb behind his back, announced:
– Most recent. Master upstairs.
Rigby and Lacrosse obeyed a commanding finger gesture and followed the old man along the familiar path. The massive iron door slammed shut. Despite the warm day, the air inside was, as always, damp and cool. Ned led them up a spiral staircase, illuminating the dark space with a high lamp.All the way he grumbled and muttered something under his breath, stopping from time to time when a particularly thick cloud of dust flew out from under his feet.
– From here, perhaps, you will get there yourself. – The servant stopped at the top platform, sneezed again and wiped his nose with his sleeve.
Hector cautiously walked around the old man, followed by Dirk, and by the light of the smoking oil lamp behind them, both trotted to the door in the depths of the platform. Dirk hit the door hard with his fist. The loud knock gave him confidence.He lifted the latch and entered the room gravely.
– Oh, Mr. Lacrosse … And Mr. Rigby is with you … Yes, I see, behind your back. Please come in. Help yourself to wine. You, of course, remember all those present.
A smiling Tadeusz Nielsen came out to meet them. He wore a worn business card of gray velvet, cuffs trimmed with greasy mole fur, and a spotted shawl tied around his neck. His smile widened, and a hideous scar lifted the corner of his lip. Out of respect for the guests, he donned a disheveled wig.But despite his unrepresentative appearance, there was something about him that thrilled Dirk and Lacrosse every time they found themselves in his company. The gleam of gray eyes, it seemed, burned through the interlocutor, did not very much correspond to the humped back and the apparent decrepitude of Tadeusz.
In the middle of the room, at a chipped table, sat four gentlemen – elderly people, as if they were dozing. As Rigby and Lacrosse appeared, they all nodded their heads and muttered greetings; the new arrivals took the empty chairs.Hector brushed the dust off his chair with a squeamish grimace before sitting down.
– Wine, gentlemen. – The generous host filled two muddy glasses from a dusty bottle and passed them across the table, and then poured a new one for the rest of the audience. – And now to the point.
– Just tell me where to sign, Tadeusz, – the elder rumbled – a man with a long gray beard. – I do not want long explanations.
– I believe you as myself. – Another with a swing hit the table top with his palm – glasses clinked, a tree groaned plaintively.
The owner looked at him from under half-closed eyelids, sending only one understandable warning: the actor was overplaying a little.
– Completeness, banker Moran. Your words are too great an honor for me, ”Tadeusz said slowly and sipped his wine. “But I don’t think about accepting money from you without documents.
“Naturally,” the alleged banker hastily agreed with him. “I’m just talking about this … It’s about that,” he coughed in embarrassment.
– What caused this haste, Nilsson? Asked Hector Lacrosse gruffly.- Need more money? Tadeusz scratched his chin and frowned.
– Before you arrived, I already explained – the matter is slightly complicated: the funds where I placed your small funds are going to pay not seven, but only five percent this quarter.
He looked around the audience, seeming not in the least disturbed by this revelation. With the exception of Rigby and Lacrosse, they showed not the slightest excitement.
– But how could this have happened? – Dirk frowned gloomily, and thought to himself: why should the owner not open the shutters at least to the river.Then natural light would enter the room. There was something unpleasant, even ominous, in the fact that they were sitting in the dark – on a sunny, hot day in a gloomy, damp cave.
“Funds of this kind are always influenced by the market,” Tadeusz replied. – Do you agree, Mr. Moran?
– Quite fair … Quite fair, – the banker supported him.
“There’s nothing to worry about,” a third person put in, yawning indifferently. He was beautifully dressed in a burgundy velvet suit with gold buttons and a pigtail wig.
Hector looked at him with respect:
– Do you think so, Judge Greenway?
– No doubt, my boy. The judge yawned again. “What do you think, Bartram?” – He turned to the still silent neighbor.
“I don’t know, I don’t know,” he replied incredulously. He was as thin as a needle, with a pointed head upwards. – If we find out that instead of the promised seven percent we are given only five percent, there is something to think about. This means that Tadeusz has less money for construction … And our contributions are not as large as we expected.He looked around the audience like a wise owl.
“You are absolutely right, Bartram,” the owner immediately agreed. – Your deposits turned out to be really not that great, and I had some difficulties with cash.
He took out a new bottle.
– Another glass?
“Money … money,” the judge muttered, rubbing his hands together. After filling his glass, he passed the bottle on. – And what, dear boy, do you want from us?
“Another twenty thousand in cash,” Tadeusz explained calmly.“That way I can finish construction on Arklane and start a new project. I already have six clients, gentlemen. Of those who need a decent place to live in order to build their reputation and acquire connections. He smiled and his scar twitched. – People who have not yet had time to enjoy all the delights of a good society, it pulls irresistibly. A big house, a decent governess, Eaton for the boys – that was the birth of a new dynasty. He made an energetic gesture with his hand.- And who are we so as not to take advantage of the vanity of people eager to rise to a new social step?
– But where are the guarantees that these twenty thousand will not happen the same as with the rest of the money? – Dirk asked and refilled his not too clean glass.
“Have a little confidence, sir,” Judge Greenway protested. – It is not Tadeusz’s fault that the Exchange had an unfavorable month. But it is well known: how much leaves – the same comes. Underpaid this month, next ten percent or so.
“But unfortunately, I can’t wait until next month,” Tadeusz entered the conversation again. – We need to purchase materials and complete construction. If the contract is overdue, you can lose clients. In this case, they have the right to demand the return of the deposit, and this, gentlemen, I must admit, is very difficult to do at the present time.