Jason has dispatched Findley Brown as easily as he did a few days ago in Dunstable. Findley might a fine swordsman, but in a brawl he lacks focus. But Alfred Redman is new to Jason and Alfred understands a brawl. Alfred is prepared to when at all costs. As the fight evolves John Smith arrives and he is even more formidable.
This will be a section I need to tune. Alfred Redman has been critical in the Omicron Matter especially as he deals with Millicent’s crew. In the original, I have him participate in Eleanor and Simone’s travails in the basement. I may need to crank that back a notch just to allow civility between Redman and others.
As for my absence these past two days, blame those pesky holidays. I was at a location with poor internet access and I had left my power cord at home. I swear I was going through withdrawals wanting to work on the computer. Or perhaps I just wanted a break from family.
Look for more tomorrow and Monday.
For your enjoyment.
Jason – in back of Smith’s house
Jason took each step in a slow and cautious fashion. Alfred smirked as Jason approached. Alfred held his wood club in a moderately defensive position across his body. Jason moved up the steps. When he was just a step below, Alfred hacked at Jason’s head with surprising speed. Jason blocked it easily and an audible clack sounded through the neighborhood. The stocky man leaned down at Jason pushing him down the stairs. Jason stood up and Alfred hit again. Jason blocked it across his head. This time he felt the shock all the way down his arm. Jason jumped back further and massaged his shoulder a little. Alfred pressed forward. He swung at Jason’s left side and high. Jason blocked it again but the blow backed into Jason’s head and he saw flashes in his eyes. Jason moved back and shook his head to clear it.
Jason swung his own stick and struck Alfred’s hip who grunted. Jason swung again; this time fast but not hard on Alfred’s other side. Jason could get through Alfred’s heavier stick by being faster but not as hard. After the third blow, Alfred moved back up several steps and thumped one end of his heavy stick on the porch and suddenly four spikes appeared on one end of the thick club. Alfred now swung in a two handed fashion. Jason blocked the blow, but one of the spikes tore his jacket. On Alfred’s next swing, Jason used his stick to turn Alfred back into the wall where the spikes stuck. Alfred jerked on the bat but it would not budge. Alfred quickly swung his fist connecting with Jason’s jaw. Jason staggered back and fell down the stairs losing his stick in the process. Jason landed next to Findley who was just recovering . Jason was facing down the stairs and couldn’t see Alfred, but he was certain the next thing he was going to feel was those detestable spikes.
Instead, he heard scuffling and shouting at the top of the stairs. Jason turned over to see Edward Wayland beating Alfred Redman about the head with a cricket bat.
Jason steadied himself as he watched Wayland swing the wooden paddle with remarkable speed and accuracy. Alfred, caught unawares, blocked most blows but was pushed down the stairs towards Jason. Jason grabbed Findley Brown’s sword and approached the two fighting men. Alfred shouted as he blocked each blow of Wayland’s, “Didn’t your mother tell you not to play with sharp objects, McNeill?” At that moment Wayland tensed and shook as if in a seizure. Alfred paused with derision and swung his fist hard at the helpless Wayland’s face. Edward Wayland dropped immediately. From behind, Jason heard the thick voice of Findley saying, “You have my sword, you stinking farm hand.” Jason glanced behind to see Findley hitting his wrist a second time and Wayland twitching as a result. Jason gripped the sword harder in anger.
Alfred said, “Well timed, Mr. Brown. Attend to Mr. Wayland. I will retrieve your precious sword,” and Findley stumbled up the stairs past Jason. Jason wouldn’t be surprised by Alfred’s strength or agility this time. Alfred held his bat high and then swung. Jason dodged right and swung the sabre in a wide slash. It made contact but had no visible effect. Alfred grunted and his speed slowed, but that was all. Jason’s truncheon was at the bottom of the stairs. He jumped down to the bottom and picked it up. Alfred eyed him with a slight cockeyed view as if he discovered something distasteful on his plate. Jason looked at the sword, shook his head and then threw it as hard as he could at the door. It embedded itself two inches into the door near Findley and wobbled back and forth. Findley may a cry of surprise.
Jason sneered, “Take your sword, Findley. It was slowing me down.”
Alfred pursed his lips, stared at Jason, took a ready position, and then said over his shoulder, “I said, get inside and take Wayland with you. Now!”
Jason batted his stick lightly in his hand. He smiled at Alfred and then moved quickly up the stairs. Alfred blocked his blow, but now it was Alfred that grunted and stepped back. Alfred swung high and Jason stepped back and away avoiding the blow easily. Jason said, “I’ve no business with you. Smith took Eleanor and killed her brother. I want Smith and her. “
Alfred laughed heartily, “You might be fast lad, but Smith would slice you to ribbons before you got your stick up. As for the negress, Winfred has taken a liking to her. She has been quite entertaining the past few days. One doesn’t let such a fine spirited animal go easily.”
Jason clinched his fists and calmed himself. He said through clinched teeth, “I was wrong, Alfred. I do have business with you.” He looked at Findley at the top of the stairs and said in an angry tone, “I suppose you had your bit of fun as well?” Findley paled. Wayland coughed and laughed roughly, “Bastard must strained something down there.” He gritted his teeth as Findley applied the device. Wayland whispered, “You know Findley -loves to have someone suffer. Barely let her eat or sleep.” Findley applied the device again and Wayland collapsed completely.
Jason pointed his stick at Findley, “You, I kill.”
Alfred moved between Jason and Findley and Wayland, “I said get inside, you idiot. Are you fucking deaf?” Findley drug the unconscious Wayland into the hallway.
Jason looked at Alfred, then swung his stick high and low in a series of fast blows. Alfred blocked each blow, but they were getting closer each time. Jason solid contact with Alfred’s wrist and his bat fell. Jason whispered, “I am going to take my time with you. I will start with your knees.” Jason swung his stick hard at the side of Alfred’s leg and Alfred fell clutching his knee. He pulled a knife out of his boot ready to slice what he could reach.
Jason lifted the stick high with both hands when Charles spoke into his ear. “Jason, stand down.” Jason took a step towards Alfred and used his stick to bat away the knife. Millicent came into his ear, “Jason stop. Let them go.” At that point, Smith arrived at the door holding Winifred Stanhope with a little assistance from an injured Neville Carter-Fraser. Findley was hiding behind Smith and holding Charles Wayland up.
Smith said, “McNeill. Stop or I finish everyone off right now and then I come back for you.”
Millicent spoke into his ear, “Jason, we have Eleanor. Rachael and Felicity are hurt. Let him go.”
Jason shouted at Smith, “Tell me about my parents.”
Smith laughed loudly, “We are wasting time your Rachael doesn’t have, McNeill. Nothing is free, especially not information.”
Jason brandished his stick over Alfred, “Tell me or I start breaking Alfred’s bones.”
Smith rolled his eyes dramatically, “Neville, hold Winifred up if you can. Mr. McNeill needs a touch of enlightenment.” He handed off the full weight of Winifred to Neville, who bowed a little. Smith said to Jason, “Last chance McNeill. I promised Morgaine I wouldn’t hurt you, but you are making things difficult. Out of my way or you’ll be eating dinner through a straw for a month. At this point, I doubt she complain loudly about what is going to happen because I am going to let you live. Out of my way.”
Jason said back with more confidence than he felt, “No! Information. Now! We’ll just start with the arm.” He lifted has arm to swing.
Smith came forward with impossible speed and slammed into Jason who tumbled to the street. Smith came walking down the stairs calmly. He straightened his jacket as Jason scrambled to his feet. Smith said, “Your father is quite valuable. Morgaine may not know how valuable.” Smith grabbed Jason’s coat and slammed his fist into Jason’s face. “That is for hurting Alfred.” Jason’s nose burst with blood. Smith hit him again, “That is for not paying attention to Morgaine when you should have.” Jason felt his jaw break. Smith hit him a third time saying, “And that was for wanting free information.” He let Jason fall to the ground in a heap and Jason passed out.