Black Skies

Note: This is a fictional piece designed to inspire and get you into the theme of the setting. Think of these works as bits and pieces of the world for you to build on.

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“We were there for the Queen, but God was not on our side.”

The sirens rang, loud, I could barely hear my teacher shouting to move us to the closet. That's what we were told to do in the event of an air raid. Move to the closet and hope to god the 50mm rounds wouldn't pierce through the paper thin walls and rip us apart. The sirens were so damn loud, I hear them even these days if I let my mind wander. Need to keep my mind from wandering so I don't hear those sirens, you know? Yeah…

The sky was fucking black, fucking black with all those damn rocket boys. I don't even remember how I got outside, just that my teachers head was in twelve different pieces in front of me. Same with my si—sister, god my sister my poor poor beautiful sister. Right in front of my and my teacher trying to protect her. Didn't stop the bullets though, nothing stops those god damn machine gun bullets. They'll find your soul if you let them, rip it right out of your body. God the sky was black like a storm.

I remember…I remember looking up and seeing all the rocket boy bellies. Rocket boys, those spit fighters that use rocket fuel. The pilots are damn crazy, only a fifth of them will have enough fuel to make it back. But there's so many of them that…The sky is just black with them. I can see the roundels on the belly, that cloud. Empire of Heaven, they called themselves. The new Chinese empire strapped boys, probably my age, machine guns, and a rocket with wings all together and sent them out on a loyal mission to tear into my home land, the Russian mother land.

They did this every other week, too. I got out of that town as soon as I could, got out of there and went straight for Europe. I wanted out of there so I could join the Queen's Royal Fleet. I got my wish, I got it in spades I did. They let even my sorry ass into the Royal Fleet, gave me a RA-17 Loud Tiger. Twin machine guns, piston blades, smooth glass cockpit, and the sleekest body around. They told us it was shipped from Italy, we didn't care, they told us it was the latest in technology, we didn't care. We all had a bit of revenge to enact, they were giving us the tools to do it.

I was in the 994h Squadron, 5th wing, I'll never forget those numbers. I'll have those numbers on my damn tombstone if I have my way. We were riding high over my home land, we were going to strike the northern borders. Surgical strike directly to a known factory that produced those damn rocket boys. This was going to be a strike for the Queen, for God, for my sister and my fucking teacher. We had just enough fuel to get there and back, maybe a bit more if we glided. That was dangerous, but fun, probably the only fun we had.

No one said a word as we passed the marker, not to hard to miss. It was time to be brave and be smart. We were too damn young, to damn young to kill, we were on God's side. Then, over the cloud, comes this swarm. First we thought it might be a thunderstorm, maybe a light thunderstorm. There was no way they could have been ready for us. We were so sure, so god damn sure. We had God, our God, on our side! It wasn't a storm. It was that black sky, that dark black sky. I saw my sister scattered on God's earth like a broken pot. The bullet holes in the ground, on God's earth.

We broke into a split formation, vice grip them in the skies, the second, third, and fourth wing from the bottom and the first and fifth wing coming in from the top. It worked like a charm, we ripped through their god damn ranks like…like god my sister. It felt good, better than any woman I ever layed hands on, better than any drink I ever touched with my lips. Watching those rocket boys go up in flames and start diving to the ground.

They barely registered us, wasn't until too late did we realize that was the plan. They had hundreds to our seventy, they surrounded us and then worked back in. It was one of the most vicious, crazy, whirlwind like dogfights I've ever been in. Bank left and suddenly you're about to collide, bank right and you're near crossing a stream of bullets. Only way was to go up or down and if you went up you were going to stall and fall anyways.

I admit it, I ran, I fell from the ranks and I shot myself down towards the earth like a hawk. I didn't get to kill myself, no, that would have been easy. No I sighted one of those fuckers last minute and chased his ass. I didn't shoot though, I just caught up with him. Those rockets were fast but they were no match for the Loud Tiger. I could see the fear in his eyes, he saw my eyes too but I'll never know what he saw. He made some sort of gesture, I think it's what they teach them boys in the Heaven Army. Dived right into the ground, straight in, was going fast enough that I didn't get to see his body light up from the explosion, but I saw it in my head.

My engine was on fire, I didn't realize it until the smoke was covering my screen, so lost in the moment. The engines on the Loud Tiger were too easily heated, they didn't tell us that. I managed to skim into a lake and pop the cock pit. I'd face a firing squad for retreating in the face of battle, I knew it. I walked the earth for a good long while, walked until I found ocean, was out of rations by that point and starving. Not far north there was a village, I don't know where I got the strength but I ran the rest of the way there. Like the devil was chasing me, or at least a rocket boy.

Traded my gun and my possessions for a ticket aboard the next zeppelin out of the town. Cargo zeppelins would come by all the time, trade goods. Small ones, more like balloons on boxes. That's how I got here, as far away as I could get from the Queen. God what they must say about me on my record. Fled in the face of the enemy, the black sky, fled from his sisters body. Drinking himself and talking to strangers for pennies.

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