8.26.04– Monday I took the crusader sword over to my informant…the crazy gypsy lady everyone thinks is a which around the corner from my boyhood home. Don’t laugh she hasn’t been wrong yet, though she does have an unnatural fetish for Kraft Macaroni and Cheese…you know the powdered cheese kind.
Anyway, after checking the Tarot Cards and Tea leaves, she went into a deep meditation over the crusader sword. After about 15 minutes she told me a story so disturbingly close to things I’ve read about this BACCARDIO fellow that I had shivers running up and down my spine. Luckily for you and my investigation I brought a hand held audio recorder to capture all of this enticing story. (It just sucks for whom ever I con into transcribing all 2 hours of dialogue. -Bill) I am not going to post all 42 pages of text on line (I don’t think she’s got the power Captain!) So I will just cut excerpts out and post the relevant material here. If you want the text (it’s really an interesting read! -Bill) I’ll be more then happy to send it over to ya, just drop me a line.
The vision the sword gave to the gypsy seems to be the events surrounding the 1735 appearance of BACCARDIO and his FOUR HORSEMEN along the Shark River just out side of Neptune, NJ. The major players seem to be BACCARDIO, DEATH, WAR, PESTILENCE, and man named Bradeon Stone.
The sword was property of Bradeon Stone. He was a former apprentice of Baccardio, but earlier in his lineage there is another Bradeon who was the Knight Templar charged by Pope Urban to capture Baccardio during the first crusade. It was at that time the sword was crafted by the pope’s personal blacksmith and created from melted down artifacts supposedly blessed by Jesus himself! Quite amazing actually. Anyway on to the story.
As Bradeon neared the forest line he noticed that the fog was lifting. He hoped the pirates were not too stupid to fall for that trick. But they were. All around him he could see bodies of the crew. He saw no survivors. McPheen’s vaunted crew was no match for an army raised by Satan.
Bradeon noticed some movement ahead and he ducked behind a large oak tree. Behind the tree he found a beheaded native and more importantly, a long bow. He quickly grabbed the weapon and the two remaining hunting arrows. (Hunting arrows with their long almost “U” shaped heads were designed for short distances but maximum damage to a deer or other large animal. -Bill)
When he peered from around the tree he saw a chain gang like formation of captured pirates being lead in to the rear court yard of the castle. As they approached the door, the sword wielding guard walking along side the chain stopped and waited for the rear crossbow toting guard to catch up. When rear guard reached the swordsmen, the swordsmen motioned to the front doors and the crossbow guard turned and began walking to the doors. Bradeon waited until the court yard gate shut be for he made his move. He shadowed the crossbow guard until they reached the front door.
Bradeon leaned out from his new birch tree hiding spot, took aim with the long bow and let the arrow fly. The arrow hit its mark, the only weak spot left between the guards helmet and his rusting breastplate, the exposed vertebrate. The skeleton head went a separate direction from the rest of the still walking body. The bones, turned to dust in the wind and blew away. Bradeon dropped the long bow and dashed into the doors.
There he met his first challenge. The Horsemen of Pestilence. Bradeon stopped dead and gave an impatient look at Pestilence. The Lord of Pestilence resembled a victim of The Plague. His grotesquely rotting face protruded from the armor of a Roman Legionnaire. His muscular sculpted body armor shimmered in what little light was available. From his thick brown belt hung a traditional blood red kilt-like skirting. To one side he held his round Roman shield and high above his head he held a short sword adorned with small devil skull figures. “You going to get out of my way, or do I have to kill you?” Bradeon snarled.
The Horsemen sauntered right up to Bradeon and leaned in to his face. The two circled each other until Pestilence was almost against the wall. Bradeon feigned attack and ducked driving his sword into the ground as Pestilence took a swing designed to send Bradeon’s head to the other side of the room. Bradeon quickly thrusted his right hand into the air as Pestilence’s sword passed over his head and grabbed a hold of Pestilence’s hand and sword. With himself now in control of Pestilence’s blade he bent the Horsemen’s arm towards Pestilence’s chest and pushed upward grabbing the horsemen’s neck with his left hand. The power of Bradeon’s upward movement sent Pestilence off the ground and against the wall just as Bradeon drove the horsemen’s sword through the Roman armor and into the wall. Thus leaving the Pestilence dangling about a foot off the ground. He struggled for a bit, flailing against the wall. Bradeon quickly headed for Baccardio’s inner sactum.
Bradeon raised his sword and rushed toward Baccardio with super human speed. Baccardio calmly raised his clenched fist and when Bradeon was about ready to strike him down, he quickly opened his palm projecting an invisible force-field. Bradeon slammed face first into the force field like a brick wall. He lost his breath and dropped to one knee, thus giving Baccardio the opportunity he needed. He lowered his palm and the force-field wrapped around Bradeon and pushed down on him trying to mash him into the floor. Bradeon struggled writhing in pane on his knee. Baccardio laughed.
“On one knee, boy. Show some respect.”
“I-I will kil-kill you.” Bradeon struggled under the pressure of the force field.
“You just tried and I don’t blame you. You are my creation. I molded you, I gave you eternal life, and this is how you repay me? You ungrateful little twit.” Baccardio started circling the writhing Bradeon. “I tried for hundreds of years to kill you, but each time you somehow escaped serious injury. Oh, but I won’t fail this time. I can see that I made a mistake in training you, and now it’s time to erase that mistake. I like you to meet a friend on mine.” The door next to the fire place swung open and in stepped the massive black figure of Death. The Lord of Death Stepped forward and held his pitch-black battle-axe high saluting his master. He was wearing a monk’s robe made of black sac cloth underneath his mighty spiked collar adorned with human skulls on the shoulders. His face was black as night and was hidden behind a wrought iron cage mask.
Baccardio released Bradeon and he started to stand when in swept the flat part of Death’s giant battle-axe. It caught Bradeon in the face and batted him across the room like a tennis ball. Baccardio’s eyes grew large at the excitement. Death takes a battle stance firmly gripping the black axe. Bradeon drops to one knee and stared beyond the wrought iron cage mask and directly into the eyes of the now grinning black monster. Death stared right back. Then like a bolt of lightning Bradeon moved. He ran like cheetah towards the black clad figure. Death ready the battle-axe by bringing it to an apex high above his head. Death swung through to sever Bradeon at the mid section, But underestimated the speed at which Bradeon charged him. A split second before Death’s axe would have made contact with Bradeon soft midsection, Bradeon leapt high into the air and performed a flip over top of death and landed behind him. Bradeon wasted no time in grabbing the crossbow from next to the fire place and loading it with one of Pestilence’s arrows. Before Bradeon fired he dipped the arrow head into the raging fire from the fireplace to ignite the projectile. Now with the arrow blazing, Bradeon took aim at Death’s head, but Bradeon was not cowardly enough to shoot Death form behind. Death was very confused. By now Bradeon’s body should be in two sections on the ground in front of him, but nothing. Then from behind him came a familiar voice.
“Behind you.” Death turned around just in time to see a flaming arrow pass between the bars in his cage mask and into his eye. Death spun around because of the force of the impact and hit the floor. Bradeon scanned the room to find Baccardio, but he was gone. Bradeon walked past the writhing, flaming body of Death to the door that led to the court yard.
Bradeon exited the catacombs via a tunnel that leads into a courtyard of Death. Baccardio found beauty in death and he created a garden of tombstones and decomposing sculptures. Bradeon peered around a wall and into this garden of death. The first thing he noticed was Barccardio’s pen where he kept his two unholy and undead Rottweliers. The two evil dogs had devoured what appeared to be three of the raiding pirates and were now fighting over what was left of a fourth. This pirate was already half eaten; all that remained was from his stomach up. Bradeon thought the pirate was dead as a doornail, but to his surprise the pirate opened his eyes and saw Bradeon standing there. The pirate tried to reach out for him, and he let out a long agonizing moan. But even if Bradeon wanted to help, which he had no intention of, it was already too late. The moan alerted the fighting Rotties, and they pounced on top of the pirate, opened their blood-dripping mouths wide and completed the job by chewing at the face and neck of the still screaming pirate. The blood-curdling scream didn’t last too long as it faded into a slow gurgling sound and eventually stopped.
Bradeon shifted his gaze toward the left and saw Baccardio’s masterpiece. A narrow path winded its way through the disturbingly awesome sight. Between the intricately designed tombstones giant spikes rose from the ground like massive tree trunks. And as leaf cover high above the ground was the impaled body of four more pirates. Some still twitching and screaming in agony.
Bradeon heard the sickening sound of crunching bones and turned to see The Horsemen of War hop off a platform. The Lord of War, the dark warrior, wore traditional black leather armor, an imposing spiked collar, and massive helmet made of steel and leather with two giant horns rising out of the top. War unsheathed his sword a frightning copy of the Sword of Darkness carried by Baccardio and forged in the fires of Hell. He leaped high into the air, over the impaled body of Captain McPheen and landed in front of Bradeon. Bradeon quickly brought his own weapon to the ready.
The battle raged on fast and furious. Their swords clanging together to the right, then left, then right again. War slashed high and Bradeon blocked, their swords locked together for a moment. War leaned toward Bradeon.
“You getting weak old man.”
“You’re the one who is weak.” Bradeon kicked high and caught War in the crotch. He staggered back for a second, but the leather armor he was wearing absorbed most of the impact and he was unscathed. War rebounded, twirled his sword and returned to combat. War swung low to the left and Bradeon countered with a upward slash attacked. Bradeon slashed at shoulder level, but War under compensated and Bradeon’s blade cut deep into War’s spiked collar, but didn’t get through to War’s flesh. The attack threw War off and Bradeon pounced. He brought the sword high over his head and was about to bring it slamming down into War when he realized he made a terrible mistake. War feigned the stammer and capitalized on Bradeon’s mistake. He thrust toward Bradeon’s now exposed chest. The sword pierced Bradeon’s side glancing off the ribs and fortunately missing Bradeon’s lungs and other vital organs. Bradeon fell back and landed on his ass, and he grabbed the sword’s blade to try to stabilize it. War walked over to him and placed his left foot squarely on Bradeon’s chest and gripped his swords handle with both hands and began to extract his sword from Bradeon like King Arthur pulling Excalibur from the stone. But before he could get too far, Bradeon slide his dagger from his boot sheath and plunged it deep into War’s right knee. War yelped and fell backward onto his back. Bradeon stood up and pulled the sword from his chest and jammed his boot onto War’s chest and took a powerful swing through War’s neck sending his head a good fifteen feet from the rest of his body. Bradeon took a deep breath and felt at ease. He looked down at his blood drenched shirt and looked around for the exit. He spotted the gate, he grabbed his sword and War’s sword, and started to head towards it.
“Where do you think you are going?” He spun around to see a very pissed off Bacardio clutching his flame-like sword. “You’ve made quite a mess here tonight and you think I’m just going let you walk off into the sunset like a big hero.” Bradeon drew both swords and held them in front of him.
“I will fight you if I have to.” Bradeon’s voice sounded tired he was loosing a lot of blood and started to feel a little dizzy.
“I don’t want to fight you; I just want you dead.” Responded Baccardio.
Bradeon knew at this point he was no match for Barccardio, but he would try, at least to put up some kind of fight. Bradeon feigned with the Sword of Darkness in his right hand and swung hard with his sword in his left hand. He tried to slash for Baccardio’s throat. Barccardio easily blocked the slash, twisted his sword a little, and caught Bradeon’s trusty sword in the flaming serrations. Baccardio yanked back and Bradeon’s sword went sailing through the air landing off into the night. He saw Baccardio swing at him, and he tried to block with War’s Sword of Darkness, but the Copy was no match for the original and the sword melted as it came in contact with Baccardio’s blade. The Sword of Satan cut all the way through the Sword of Darkness and Bradeon’s arm. Bradeon pulled back in pain and watched as his forearm and hand, still clutching the sword, hit the ground. Baccardio pushed Bradeon against the rear wall of the castle. He smiled at Bradeon. Bradeon relaxed knowing full well what was to come.
“You got me, now come on kill me!”
“I want you to enjoy this as much as I.” Baccardio laughed triumphantly.
Baccardio started at Bradeon’s neck and slide his sword down till he reached Bradeon’s stomach. Bradeon was loosing consciousness for the excruciating pain. Baccardio slapped Bradeon’s cheek.
“Now I don’t want you to miss the best part.” Baccardio plunged his hand deep into Bradeon’s chest cavity. Bradeon let out a scream that would wake the dead. Baccardio laughed manically as he felt around for the prize. He pulled out Bradeon’s heart and held it in front of Bradeon’s eyes and squeezed until it popped splattering blood all over both of their faces. Baccardio wiped the blood from his forehead and licked his hand. Then he placed the flattened organ into, the barely alive, Bradeon’s mouth. Bradeon’s vision was blurring. The end was near. The last thing he saw was Baccardio’s still laughing form strolling off into the night.
After the gypsy spoke those last words she slumped over in her chair passed out. I feeling somewhat uncomfortable checked to make sure she was still breathing, I tossed a few extra bucks on the table, grabbed my sword and walked out. The only thought that I have in my head now isn’t so much “Who is BACCARDIO?”, but rather “We HAVE to stop him!” We cannot let a being such as BACCARDIO walk the Earth. He needs to be stopped today, but how?
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