muzzle flare

warrior child,
you carry such coldness in your veins
war-torn child,
you carry such loneliness in your bones
war-born child,
you carry such horror in your heart

warrior child,
you were born with legends breathing inside your name
and history books waiting to trace your footsteps

war-torn child,
you know better than anyone how to cry in silence for things gone by
and how to kill and kill without seeing their eyes

war-born child,
you were made to hold brawls between your knuckles
and bury old friends and old memories between your ribs

warrior child,
I was once a warrior too
I was born with bones made of gunmetal
    and eyes made of muzzle flares
    and a voice made of hissing bullets

war-torn child,
you and I are much the same
I am older than you
    but not by much
    but not by enough
you will soon be as old as I
and we will both still be warrior children

war-born child,
you and I know too well
    how this story will end
    how this story always ends
    how this story must forever end

warrior child,
do not fear
it is they who should be afraid

war-torn child,
fear is what beats inside your heart
in the place where life used to be 

war-born child,
there is nothing more frightening
than a man who has torn his own self apart

so burn your bridges, warrior child,
    before someone else lights them up
so freeze your heart, war-torn child,
    before someone else leaves it cold
so dig your grave, war-born child,
    before someone else buries you

—  and if they ask—call it peace ( j.p. )

(wrote this for a prompter on AO3, figured I might as well post it here)

The sun blazes down on the asphalt below. Glints off the lenses of Harry’s glasses. Glints off the barrel of Valentine’s gun. The muzzle flares to life at the touch of the trigger.

All Eggsy can hear is the rush of blood in his ears, his heart pounding in his chest. His eyes fly open to find only black surrounding him, and he suddenly feels as if he’s the one who’s died. Sweat sticks his hair to his forehead, has him throwing back the covers.

Eggsy staggers into the bathroom. He flicks on the light, squinting in the sudden glare, and avoiding his reflection in the mirror. Instead, he bends over the sink, turning the cold water on blast and splashing it into his face. Might as well wake himself up, he figures. He’s not getting back to sleep after a nightmare like that.

Like a sonic boom, the gunshot rings in Eggsy’s ears, delayed. He claps his hands over them, but it doesn’t stop the inside of his own head from taunting him. In vain, he tries to shake off the clinging dread, reminding himself that Harry is fine, that he’ll be back later that day. Eggsy just has to make it another few hours.

He moves around the house quietly out of habit. Harry isn’t there to wake up; he’s off somewhere in Belize. Eggsy isn’t even sure what timezone Harry is in, whether it’s night or day for him.

A few hours seems like an unbearably long time as the sun slowly spills over the horizon. Eggsy hunches over his mug of tea, watching it go cold. When he finally takes a sip, it’s little more than room temperature. With a grunt of disgust, he pushes it away. A bit of it slops over the rim, but Eggsy can’t be bothered to clean it up, not then.

The thing that finally gets him out of his chair is a small, plaintive whine at the front door. JB’s claws scratch at the wood, and he yelps pitifully.

“Fine, fine, I’m comin’,” Eggsy mutters, hauling himself out of his chair. He shuffles over to the front door, trying not to let JB trip him up.

The pug is off like a shot as soon as the door is cracked, wriggling through the small gap, and bounding away.

“Oi!” Eggsy calls after him, but JB doesn’t give any sign that he’s heard. Sighing, Eggsy snatches the lead off the rack by the door, starting off after him. He cups his hands around his mouth. “JB! C’mon, boy, get back here!”

Obediently, JB comes trotting back, followed by a tall, suit-clad figured.

“Lose someone?” Harry asks, eyes shining with amusement.

“Harry,” Eggsy breathes, letting JB’s lead fall to the ground. He launches himself at Harry almost at a run, barreling into him and wrapping his arms around him as tightly as he can.

Harry huffs out a laugh, returning the embrace. “I was going to ask if you’d missed me, but I think you’ve answered my question,” he murmurs, dropping a kiss to the top of Eggsy’s head.

Eggsy burrows his face into Harry’s chest. His fingers clutch the fabric of his suit jacket, trying to pull him even closer.

Harry cards his fingers through Eggsy’s hair, indulging him. Eventually, however, he leans back a bit, tilting Eggsy’s chin up. “Is everything alright?” he asks, studying Eggsy intently.

A relieved smile spreads across Eggsy’s face, and for a moment all he can do is nod. “Yeah. Yeah, everythin’s fine.”

Harry’s skepticism vanishes, and he returns Eggsy’s smile. “Glad to hear it. Let’s get the little bugger back inside, shall we?”

Eggsy turns to find JB sitting at his heels, tongue out and panting.

“Right,” Eggsy laughs. He bends down, and scoops up both the lead and the pug in one go. Cradling JB in one arm, Eggsy holds his other hand out to Harry.

Looking slightly surprised, Harry accepts it, lacing their fingers together. They head back into the house, out of the early morning chill, arms swinging gently between them.

Keep reading


Pair of Flintlock Pistols by Tow

Manufactured by John Tow of Griffin and Tow for the British East India Company c.early 1800′s - serial number 289492A.
.69 loose powder and ball, flintlock, bronze barrel and trigger guard as fit for Navy service.

Note the flared muzzles to accommodate reloading on a moving ship or dolphin.
Not a lobster though.