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Nickolaus A. Pacione

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Books
· The Writings Collected: Vol. Two

· Nickolaus Albert Pacione Delivers: A Library Of Unknown Horrors

· Emanations

· Dirty Black Winter

· An Eye In Shadows

· The Ethereal Gazette: Issue Five

· Quakes and Storms: A Natural Disaster Anthology

· Tabloid Purposes

· Collectives In A Forsaken Landscape

· Reality Check (Short story: Bite of the Spider)


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· Il nostro mondo violentata

· Fandom Weirdness

· A Rural Weird Tale

· A Personal Stalker

· The Monster Amongst Man

· Inquistion Revisted

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· Misguidance

· Spectral Exile

· The Ichabod


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· Gothic Tinged Memoir Anthology Call

· Gothicism on Trial

· OFFICIAL AUTHORSDEN ANTHOLOGY -- DYERS EVE

· The Aftermath: 2 Days of Darkness

· Review: The Tooth Fairy

· review: The Garden

· The Author Speaks

· Hammerhead: SHARK FRENZY

· Writing The Fossil


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· In Memoriam...

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Books by Nickolaus A. Pacione
The Storms Of Armageddon (a passage)
By Nickolaus A. Pacione
Posted: Saturday, December 31, 2005
Last edited: Saturday, June 16, 2007
This short story is rated "PG13" by the Author.
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Recent stories by Nickolaus A. Pacione
· The Cabbie Homicide: Oct 13, 1993
· I Want To See You In Black
· A Personal Stalker
· Il nostro mondo violentata
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· Ghosts In The Tornado: The Notes
           >> View all 73
            View this Story
Just a small passage from this Cyberpunk story. The first 3500 words of this beast. This is all I am going to let people read until it is finished. It borrows a lot from the anthology, QUAKES AND STORMS: A NATURAL DISASTER ANTHOLOGY, and it is dedicated to the entire line up of the project. The actual chapbook is much longer than this is.
The Storms of Armageddon

Written by Nickolaus A. Pacione



Storm winds and waters thrashed against the walls, and a lone anchorwoman stood out there and captured the footage for the storm. She was from one of the regions around Florida that were closely hit by the nameless hurricanes, just described as the perfect storms. This storm was so horrific that it wasn't even named but giving a category 6 or higher. The skies foretelling the shadows in the beginning from the times of Noah that it was going to happen again. In fact it will happen again -- this time in the new world. These storms don't even have a name but destructive enough to symbolize the mass extinction. Storms echoed the horror told years ago of the early 20th Century of the man who called the hurricane coming in the path of Texas in 1900, but they seemed to forget all of that after what happened. Just as that storm wiped part of a population the cameras captured the horrors in the screams drowned out by the waters.

"I am Ellen Jasper, reporting for Channel 5 news in Tampa, Florida, a bunch of us were tracking this unnamed storm as it makes landfall -- it looks like a Category 6 at least. Oh. My. God. Did you hear that -- I saw some debris flying around near the location, I cannot believe what it was or describe what it is -- seemed that it was some kind of steel fence," the reporter said while spotting some kind of part, "Let's get the hell out of here"

Ellen pulled her rain hood over her head to cover from the thrashing waters and the way they felt to her skin were similar to needles and sandpaper. They felt ice and hail falling on them too from the sky, weird for the area they are at for hail but she knew things like that being more common in states like Illinois, letters from her sister actually showed photographs of the hailstones. Horrified she got into the car and ordered her cameraman to not waste anytime in getting in.

"Did you see that or capture that -- they say a category five, but this looks like it is going to be more than a Category five storm here especially with the tornadoes ravaging the city scape. It isn't just the hail enough doing the damage but look at that damned storm surge! Jesus Christ, let's get the hell out of here but at the same time keep taking this footage. If anyone described what Armageddon looks like, this must be it. They said things like this happened in ancient times, but it was hard to tell how far back these kind of storms would go or they say that something like this happened in Texas in 1900. But it looks like this one is going to not only rip into Tampa, but it is also ravaging parts of Georgia and the panhandle. This is what Armageddon looks like when it happens! The whole tourist industry gone to hell here by the time the rest of the storm surge hits."

[Camera rolls while the windows in the van are barely visible, hail stones and debris thrash against the walls of the vehicle. The sound they hit the door at might of impaled it, too horrified to look they decided to press on and try to find some shelter on some higher ground. The details they were documenting were the results of an actual emergency. The footage rolls and goes for another five hours as they were going -- the storm lasts for a good part of a night and a day before the worst of it comes in.]

"Did you see that? I mean the wall from someone's house hit the door of the van! Christ this is insane!" the camera man said while checking back with the anchorwoman, "We should try to drive out of here but seems like our vehicle is buried in water. Unless this thing is equipped for water travel we're screwed."

"Amphibian mode now!" the anchorwoman shouted to the on board computer, "We're equipped for this one just be prepared to take some high waters. It's a Hummer with some special forces specifications. This is years after the major hurricanes that happened two years ago but enough to add some specifications that allows us to travel safely at sea like a hovercraft. But it was never tested for hurricane conditions. I've had some connections in the military who knew what they were doing when they were making some toys up for these kind of disasters."

"The vehicles where not designed for hurricanes in mind back when they were first designed," the camera man quipped, "Not in the early 1990's or even in the first part of the 21st Century. This is 2013, cars were starting to become fitted with hurricane protection but standard with the trucks, some of them were given a feature that allows them to be seaworthy."

[Camera rolls, waters thrashing against the door at a violent pace. The camera crew felt the forces of the Gulf of Mexico beating against the driver side of the car. then feels the steering wheel become a mechanism to steer the vehicle in hovercraft mode. One of the cameramen follows to the back where the anchorwoman sits.]

"That was close. I could imagine my headstone being Oct 22, 1978, to December 21, 2013. Died in middle of the hurricane of 2013. Now that the Hummer is in amphibian mode, I can continue to get the story here -- the winds are blowing at a violent pace if you don't find shelter in the Downtown Tampa area get to shelter now and they've said that there were tornadoes reported off the major highway. No one was able to come in or leave the city because they are walled to the edge because of the tornadoes. This storm is too powerful to have a name for this one, but we can see the sheer horror in site people already being washed out to sea. Their screams -- there is nothing we were able to do about it."

"It's okay, we're still taping," the camera man responded, "I am just trying to figure out how to get us steering to higher ground, as in trying to find us a parking lot that has an elevator with enough room to fit a hovercraft. I found the hurricane camera button, and will be pressing it now -- the computer will allow us to see in the storm. The wheels will allow us to hover around the stormsurge, the forces can withstand hurricanes that are a category eight or higher -- the military designed the metal to be used on the Hummer."

"Keep it steady, hurricanes made me nervous back when I was younger too but I never seen anything this destructive -- not since September 11, 2001, the only thing here is that all communications up north and base were cut off. Our fuel cells are fully loaded, since the energy here is taken right from the storm itself -- this thing is a living, breathing storm. A wrathful god on earth as one person described it. Waiting for his people to do something wrong and in a split second erase them from any existence on earth. Their extinction; or the storms that would appear at their extinction. Storms like this only show one thing -- the start of what they say or describe to be the end."

"Hang on, this is going to be a rather rough ride!" One of them shouted, even when they were in the car they still heard the winds blow really loud.

The way the winds sounded outside the windows were similar to that to a very fast freight train falling from the sky. The waters blowing against the steal sounded like broken glass and sand; in fact the water had shards of houses and wood thrashing against the doors. The glass and metal from buildings that were once there before the storm became nothing but shards, houses where people used to live are brought down to rubble. Reduced to a memory as they would watch from the safety of their modified Hummer.

"Oh God, did you feel that?" the anchorwoman asked in an alarmed voice, "This is what the end of the world looks like! These are the storms of Armageddon, done in by Mother Nature instead of nuclear winter. The forces of nature are more destructive than anything that was to happen by the hands of man. This must be what Galveston faced one hundred and thirteen years ago, the same horrors described as Isaac's Storm -- that same storm returned but to ravage an urban landscape as Tampa, Florida, this is the horror seen years ago but too horrific to name."

Winds howling loud enough for the cameras to pick up on them; even from the sealed windows they could be heard. The windows on the Hummer were designed to deflect a high powered rifle, so any hits from flying debris wouldn't inflect any kind of damage. Screams being drowned out by the winds as the waters took away its victims, almost if the volcano from Ancient Rome claimed its victims during its timeline.

"You've got to be kidding me!" she said when she was looking outside from the window, the visibility was low but enough to see what horrors are floating outside of the doors.

"Let's see what the camera is picking up outside, call up the computer on board. Quick find that computer switch! Where the hell is it? I can't find it in this storm laden darkness!"

Frantically she searched for the computer keyboard because the way they had it set up was it was their eye to the outside while there was a storm. The light was still rather dim in the Hummer, but she was able to find a small glowing button that called up the computer's keyboard. The sounds of the screams coming from outside were making her job to conduct the news rather difficult but she's doing what she was able to do. Emailing the newsroom of the horrors she heard just outside her door; the screams for the people getting swallowed by the seas -- knowing that the Gulf of Mexico has a mind of its own during a hurricane, the voices screaming into silence when the gulf swallowed them alive.

Frantically in horror she types up an email to her office somewhere in the south but doesn't connect to the world wide web that easy, nervousness sinks in when the waters around the Hummer rise. Even in the hovercraft mode, they can still feel the effects of the hurricane tossing them around like a cat tossing around a ball of yarn.

"Holy crap, did you hear that? It sounded like someone screaming for help, let's try to find them."

"Can you actually steer this thing in the waters?"

The anchorwoman was really nervous because the hovercraft mode wasn't really tested in extreme conditions. No one needed to see how nervous she was but the camera showed it for her. The Horrors dwindling as the winds blown against the Hummer with some extreme violence induced by the winds of the storm. Waiting as it is a time before the eye passes over everyone, but even then they were never out of the clear and present danger. Storms and darkness tell from the horrors years ago, "This will happen again."

[Camera records everything within the natures carnage, including the winds blowing and thrashing debris on the indestructible and transparent shell of bulletproof plastic dome over the camera. The horrors seen from the camera's point of view looking as the debris of wood and steel bumping against it. All the hours within the hurricane dwelling in shadow and water, between living and dead thrashing against the hummer. Screams and pleas for help were heard outside the Hummer.]

"I see someone outside the Hummer let's see if we can round them into the vehicle there's plenty of room. Act fast before the next part of the storm touches down, they said to report five tornado funnels hitting land just outside the city limits. Which one of you wants to go fetch one of the victims hanging on the trees?"

Ms. Jasper pointed in the relative direction at the tree she was talking about, some of the crew carefully steered the hummer in the relative direction and pressed button that said "Anchor" on it.

"We'll drop anchor here. There is an area in the back of the Hummer that allows for an anchor as long the vehicle is in amphibian mode. Well its time to play hero, the water is well above the doors so we won't be getting the angry water rushing in."

The cameraman tied a rope to himself and quickly opened the door before the winds start thrashing against the walls of the vehicle.

"Be careful," Ms. Jasper suggested.

"Don't worry I was trained as a Marine, they taught us how to do rescues at sea and in rushing water," the cameraman replied with a calm tone, "They taught us to be heroes. Even after when the Mayan Calendar events already happened and some technology decided to turn on the creator, but here we are operating the creation man used with science to navigate one of the most wrathful of Mother Nature's storms. Literary living out one of Michael Crichton's stories, but here we are trying to play hero. Someone take the wheel."

With an opening of the door, the ex-Marine dove into 30 feet of water thrashing against the doors at 130 mph. He popped up without a scratch. The rope was tied to the foot rails of the Hummer, it continued to hover slightly above the storm's thrashing waters. The winds were blowing at a loud rate, and the door surprising able to withhold the harsh wind -- the vehicle was fitted with robotic parts so during natural disasters if something needed to be opened it could lock open long enough for the subject to exit and do a rescue. He was literary pushing aside bodies that were first captured in the original storm surge, and there was still debris coming in.

I better move fast here and get that woman hanging on a palm tree, he thought to himself. Having that he fastened himself to the rail he had plenty of room to swim without getting bumped against the rails -- he used his free hand to latch himself to the vehicle. Hang in there lady! I am going to come help you if this rope gets enough of a reach.

"I am coming lady! Just hang tight."

The woman had a look of terror thinking that she wasn't going to make it. The waters were about thirty feet deep and she was strained swimming for a good five miles after her house was completely engulfed by the first storm surge. It was a forty foot swim to where the woman was from the Hummer, he's going for it.

"We got a news story happening right here, I mean one of our camera crew is going for a rescue of a woman literary hanging on a palm tree for dear life. We're sitting in the hummer and found out that the vehicle is capable of locking open and being able to keep the water from coming into the Hummer is something I am surprised at -- the guy is an ex-Marine, and was trained in water rescue. One of the robot cameras followed him from the beginning of the rescue to the actual rescue. He managed to climb up on some floating debris and then dived back into the water."

"Please! Be careful out there!"

Ms. Jasper was peering out the Hummer while she yelled for the camera crew member playing hero for someone who was stuck on one of the trees.

"Damn, I didn't think he would actually go out there. Watch for flowing debris."

The Ex-Marine smiled, "I'll be fine. This is the kind of thing I was trained for. I knew that someone was out here and wouldn't seem right if we left her out here. clear the back area of the hummer so we can lay her out on the back of the vehicle. Since the one we were given was an old ambulance from 2000. I think we could get her back there just get a blanket ready because she might have hypothermia."

"You heard the Marine, looks like we're doing a rescue. How fast can we get the back set up for this victim we're saving?"

"As fast as we can get them here."

"Then do it. We've got a blanket for in case we get stuck in snowstorms, I know that they don't happen in Florida but we could never be too sure. Especially after the drastic climate changes in the past decade."

The former Marine made his craw out to the woman hanging on to dear life, and she was freezing cold from the thrashing water. Will I make it to her in time? Come on leatherneck, you've seen things worst than this in Iraq! It's time to play hero one more time here, was what he thought to himself as he swam past the jagged debris of wood and metal. The rope was strong enough to withstand the unforgiving winds and waters thrashing against him as he struggled to get to the woman who dangled on the palm tree. He tried to drown out the screams of those who the sea already swallowed alive, must get to her before the sea gets there.

Made it! That is the first part of the battle Marine, he thought to himself when offered the woman is hand.

"Give me your hand, I am not a rescue worker or anything -- just a journalist who was filming the carnage. Don't worry I am here to help, my name is Thomas Grimmett -- I swam out here from that hummer that is hovering over head. The vehicle will take us to higher ground once you are inside. On the count of three, when I say three you jump."

"One. Two. Three. Go ahead lady I will get you if you're having trouble. I am a strong swimmer."

The lady jumped, and scared as hell she managed to grab his rope. Ellen pulled them both in while the hummer hovered over head.

"Quick open the back door, close the driver side doors."

The back door opened, "Quickly swim to the door! We'll get in closer for you so it won't be a far swim. There's some debris coming your way so you better hurry. This hurricane is about to pick up some speed once again. The nationwide headquarters were telling us to clear the area as soon as possible because there are tornadoes witnessed just along the city limits"

"Don't worry, I will make it."

The camera man had some determination to his voice, the camera followed him while he pulled the woman who was clinging to life. She was frightened by the idea that they might not make it, the camera was a testament of her story if she didn't make it -- that last will and testament, but deep down that ex-jarhead wasn't going to let her die.

"You will make it, I won't let you die on my watch! I got you, I am a strong swimmer and you got the rope to hang onto so hang tight. I will have us to that Hummer in the next five to ten minutes pending if we have no debris floating our way. There's a bed set up in the back for you because I feel that you're shaking without end. Frightened, possibly ill from the exposure to freezing water. There will be a camera following us every step of the way hovering right above us in case something happened to either of us. This camera can show the families our ordeals towards the end, but we won't expire -- not on my watch."
      

Web Site: read the complete novella in The Writings Collected, Vol 2 available on lulu.com  

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Reviewed by Terry Vinson 5/21/2006
Nick,

I'm gonna start calling you the 'Master of (Natural) Disaster'. Great prelude to what I'm sure is a nail-biter all the way. Enjoyed it.

Terry
Reviewed by Mary Quire 1/11/2006
Puts you on the edge of your seat and keeps you there. Keep up the good work.
Reviewed by Robert Montesino 1/5/2006
This one makes my "Anywhere But Here" storm story look tame Nick! Keep rocking & rolling with this one!
Reviewed by Birgit and Roger Pratcher 12/31/2005
Excellent work, Nick. Still, are you sure there will not be more you would like to share? (So curious to see more:))Keep going, tame that beast!
Birgit and Roger

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