Disclaimer: I do not own the Highlander universe, just setting the story there. This story was written around 1996 and focuses on original characters but familiar characters start showing up about halfway through. It is complete and I will posting over the next several days. All reviews and comments are welcome and appreciated
THE ONLY EASY DAY IS YESTERDAY
"The Journey of Jeremy Keller"
by OldScoutPart 1
The young man walked through the dark, deserted parking lot.
Around him, scattered cars sat abandoned by their last drivers. The
mall had been closed for hours. All windows were dark, and there was
no other movement. An empty cup rolled across the yellow lines,
crossing paths with a wayward page from the evening's sports section.
He wore a camouflage military field jacket with the collar pulled
up and secured under his chin. A black printed strip over the right
pocket read "KELLER" and one over the left read "US NAVY". His
short, outgrown GI haircut was matted down by the mist of rain that fell
about him. Black canvas jungle boots made no noise on the wet
blacktop, and his green military duffel was slung securely over his right
shoulder, riding comfortably on his back.
On the far side of the lot, a pair of lights appeared and headed
for the young man. He looked at the approaching lights then at the
woods and the unseen highway beyond. The moment of hesitation cost
him his choice. The car approached faster then he had originally
anticipated. It could be a cop, or a random driver coming to check out
this lone figure. The man put down his duffel. He knew it was neither.
Someone had been stalking him since this morning.
The car stopped thirty yards away. In the dim light, he could
tell it was a new Camero. The black roof suggested a Z28, not bad.
The driver got out, he was a tall man wearing a trench coat. A
sickening knot that started in the pit of Keller's stomach then shook his
whole body told him what this man was. He walked from the edge of
the glow of one street light to another.
Keller waited patiently to see the man's face. Finally, the driver
was close enough to make out. He looked to be barely a man, perhaps
"I am Grigori Neboatov," the boy said as he pulled an old
curved sword from under his coat. "But my friends know me as Greg
Newbury," he added with a smile.
"Sorry to disappoint you, Greg, but I don't play the game,"
Keller informed the other. Then reached down to pick up his bag.
Newbury swung his sword from one position to another and
took a step toward Keller. "You don't have a choice." He then smiled
again. "When I saw you this afternoon, I really didn't think it would be
"You mean you would kill me just like that, in cold blood?"
"The blood definitely isn't cold, and it's all just part of the Game.
It is the price you pay for a few extra days, years or even centuries of
"Your already dead. I'm just finishing the job." With that,
Newbury stepped forward, raising his sword to strike.
"I don't think so," Keller said and pulled a stainless steel .357
magnum out from under his coat.
Newbury grinned briefly, thinking his adversary was finally
pulling his own sword. The bright flash and explosion quickly changed
his expression. Pain ripped through his left side as his kidney
disintegrated and blew out his back, taking with it splinters of rib and
parts of near by organs. Before he had time to scream, his shoulder
exploded, shattering the top of his arm, leaving only muscle and tissue
to hold it to his body.
Grigori Neboatov landed on his shattered side screaming in
pain. The boy/man grabbed feebly at his wounds. Only his centuries of
life kept him from succumbing to the pain and passing out. "You son
of a bitch," he hissed. "this breaks all the rules."
"What rules? I never signed up for any game. I'm just
protecting myself the only way I know how."
"Next time, you bastard, I won't give you a chance."
"You would still come after me knowing that I don't play?"
"As long as your head is on your shoulders, your playing. You'd
better get yourself a sword, 'cause next time you won't surprise me."
"I'm sorry you feel that way."
Grigori watched through blurred eyes as Keller reached into his
duffel and pulled out a weapon the length of his arm. The sound of a
shell being pumped into a shotgun was the second to last sound Grigori
The Z28 was a fine car. Grigori must have parked it at a
distance to avoid the quickening. How considerate. One thing Keller
had learned the last few years was that these immortals, especially the
older ones, had very few ties, so wouldn't soon be missed and were very
hard to trace when found sans head.
Jeremy Keller sat parked on the back street overlooking the
Virginia Beach shoreline. A large ship glided across the horizon and
pulled Keller into his dreams.
......It had been a standard mission, and an easy one. Swim in
close to the shore, photograph the Iraqi fortifications at sector 12b, then
swim back to the sub. Along the way, they would flag any mine lines
found. It was a mission they had trained for a hundred times over and
had accomplished without incident twelve times.
The Iraqis had no clue the SEALS had been there and gone.
None of the young Iraqi boy-soldiers who sat nervously awaiting the
pending invasion knew how close the Americans were. They sat
huddled in their bunkers watching the faint horizon for the invading
fleet, never suspecting the enemy floated a few yards off shore, looking
up at them.
The mission had gone flawlessly, in and out quickly. They had
found their sleds and started the long swim back without incident. In
the Persian Gulf, however, the weather could change quickly. The
surface had turned from slow rolling waves to a violent chop. Weather
was just the beginning of trouble for Lieutenant Keller. The currents
from the waves separated him from his team. Then his re-breather
began having troubles. Mico-chips in the complex, mixed gas
rebreather failed quickly, poisoning his oxygen. Swimming in near
blackness in the middle of the Persian Gulf, Lieutenant Jeremy Keller
died, killed by the most sinister enemy of a high tech soldier, a defective
Jeremy woke up gasping for air and clutching at the steering
wheel. Night had fallen, and lights spotted the ocean and shore in front
of him. Hunger gnawed at his gut, and the pain of cramped muscles
pulled at his neck and shoulders. The Z28 fired right up and carried
him back toward the frenzied panic of civilization. It was time to stop
remembering what had been and begin looking forward to a very long
life, if he could avoid the crazies playing with their swords.
The car pointed itself west and carried Lieutenant Keller into the
to be continued..............