Feb 05, 2021
5 mins read
"Hold up, right there, stranger! What brings you to Jacob's Homestead?" Came a voice from above the closed palisade gate in the center.
"I would think that my pack animal and all of this stuff would make that fairly obvious, friend. I'm a trader, and seek to engage in some trade for my wares and perhaps purchase items that you good folks might have for such." Jason said spreading his hands indicating Clyde and his load of goods.
"You are rather heavily armed and strangely dressed, to be a simple trader, stranger." Jason was looking up at a tall, full bearded man with a deep and commanding voice.
"Well, since I've been attacked 3 times in the last day and a half, I'd say I was a little under-armed. These are the clothes I woke up wearing, fella." Jason said sarcastically and continued. "Well, actually, I woke up wearing a red spandex body suit. But it wasn't durable enough and got a big rip in the leg. So, I just put this old thing on from my locker. I've got two more sets just like it, they're not for sale though."
"What village do you call home?" asked the the burly man who was apparently standing on a platform at the top and behind the palisaded gate. "Where do you come from?"
"I don't have a "home village", yet. But, as a trader, I'm sure I'll find a suitable village to call home, eventually. I do have a base of operations though. It's about 3, 3 and a half miles south, southeast of here." Jason said as he pointed over his shoulder with his thumb.
"That is an evil area, stranger. All who have gone there from here, have never returned." The man told Jason with a grim look on his face.
"Damn. Sorry to hear that, fella. I had nothing to do with that. Hell, I'm only still breathing because I was just fast enough to keep from getting ventilated, myself." Jason told the big man informatively.
"Since you say that you've been attacked several times in the last day or so, how is it that you're not wounded in the least?" Asked the big man.
"I am an inactive Marine, I got activated, it seems. Marines are trained for combat and we're good at it. I just reacted according to my training and experience in combat. Marines are hard to kill, fella." Jason said, seriously.
Jason heard some kind of commotion behind the gate, the big man turned around and was apparently speaking with someone behind the gate animatedly.
The big man turned back around and said, "By what name are you known, stranger?"
"I'm Jason, Jason Stalk." Jason answered, feeling a little put out. "I'm just a simple trader, nowadays. You see, I'm kinda new at this being a traveling trader. If you don't want or need my services, maybe you folks could point me toward a village that would like to see a trader with plenty of goods to trade." Jason told the man good-naturedly.
The big man turned and told someone behind the gate what Jason had said.
There was a commotion behind the gate and Jason could hear a woman's voice that sounded familiar yelling, "Open the damned gate! I want to see this Jason Stalk who claims to be a Marine. It's impossible! Jason Stalk was killed during Sky Fall. It can't be him. I saw the crater!"
"Okay, Mr. Stalk, unload your weapons and put both the magazines and the weapons on the ground. Tether your animal and leave it with your weapons. Keep your hands in plain sight and approach the gate. Remember, we've got weapons trained on you, if you do anything aggressive, you'll be shot full of holes and probably look a lot like a pincushion." The mountain of a man said, quite seriously.
Jason wasn't fond of the idea of disarming himself but, complied when he heard a familiar voice from behind the gate. Jason's memory was doing cartwheels and he was excited to hear Dr. Swan's voice.
Jason unloaded and laid his weapons on the ground after wrapping Clyde's lead rope around the butt of his rifle.
Jason stood up, squared his shoulders and started walking toward the gate with his hands held open and at his sides. As Jason neared the large gate, a door within one of the gate's large doors opened for him to enter the area between the stone work wall and the wooden palisade. Jason could see beyond the door and there were perhaps 10 or more people gathered there, pointing weapons at him. There were also 4 men in front of the large gate armed with bows, pointing knocked arrows in his direction.
As Jason stepped through the smaller doorway, the people gathered there stepped back, allowing Jason to enter. The large man came down from the interior platform above the gate opening and addressed Jason.
"If you are who you say you are, we will soon see. I am George England, I'm our Sargent Of the Guards. There is someone here that says that you can't be who you say you are." Said the mountain of a man menacingly, as he cracked his knuckles.
Jason chuckled to himself thinking, "You may be big, fella. But, I'm a Marine and I've already figured out how I'll kill you and as many others as I can."
Jason had turned and was facing George England, ready for some hand to hand combat if it came to that.
Jason heard a familiar voice from behind him saying, "Well, you do dress like Mr Stalk did, 30 years ago. But, he shaved his head and was much older than you are, mister."
Jason turned to see a matronly woman standing with her hands on her hips, looking skeptically at Jason.
Jason's mind raced, there in front of him was an elderly Dr. Swan. Jason knew it was the same woman he had spent several days being tested and interviewed by. The words "30 years ago" were echoing in his head and he suddenly felt very dizzy. Jason saw the edges of his vision getting dark, then briefly, nothing.