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Courts and Cabals

By G.S. D’Moore

Copyright © 2020 by G.S. D’Moore

All rights reserved. This book or any portion thereof may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever without the express written permission of the publisher except for the use of brief quotations in a book review. For permission, contact [email protected]

Cover art by Mykel Ferguson

This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, organizations, places, events, and incidents are either products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously.

ISBN 13: 978-0-9981286-6-5

Table of Contents

Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

Chapter 4

Chapter 5

Chapter 6

Chapter 7

Chapter 8

Chapter 9

Chapter 10

Chapter 11

Chapter 12

Chapter 13

Chapter 14

Chapter 15

Chapter 16

Chapter 17

Chapter 18

Chapter 19

Chapter 20

Chapter 21

Chapter 22

Chapter 23

Chapter 24

Chapter 25

Chapter 26

Chapter 27

Chapter 28

Chapter 1

I’m standing at a precipice, a cliff, and looking down at a churning ocean. My toes curl around the rough edges of the earth with nothing between them and the roiling sea but a hundred feet of air. All the way to the horizon, white-capped waves march toward me like a formation of soldiers off to war. I look out at it all and raise my arms from my side.

A strand of greying hair whips across my vision, but that’s the only evidence to suggest I’m old. My arms catch the currents, like a bird riding the thermals, and they are thick and powerful. My pale skin is pulled taught by hard muscles, and veins visibly pulse to the beat of my heart. My chest is protected by a thick coat of greying hair over a broad chest that expands as I take in the salt-tinged smell of the sea. Everywhere I look, my body is marked by scars of all shapes and sizes, but they don’t bother me. I look on them with fondness and pride.

My eyes drift from my scars back to the sea as a slight weight lands on my right shoulder. I ignore it, and instead roar in frustration. Why? I don’t know, but a shockwave spreads outward, crushing the wave of white-capped soldiers edging meticulously forward under the pull of the moon. They’re driven back over the horizon. I dare myself to make a decision. One step . . .

 

. . . something hard smacked me in the back of the head. “What’s more important, Mr. Dupree; my lecture or the back of Ms. McDougal’s head?”

The class laughed as I rubbed the impact point. Sally McDougal turned around and glared at me like I was a piece of bird shit she’d accidentally stepped in. I wasn’t actually staring at the back of her head like some creep. The back of the head doesn’t do it for me; especially Sally McDougal’s. She has dyed platinum blonde hair, and her plain brown roots were already starting to show. If I was going to stare at something, I’d stare at her ass, but that’s hard to do when we’re all sitting in Mr. Miller’s senior history class.

Speaking of Miller. “Fucking asshole,” I kept the thought to myself to avoid detention.

“Your lecture,” I answered his rhetorical question anyway, and gave him my best fuck-you smile. I managed to wink at Sally too, and she turned around with a huff.

I’d be the talk of the women’s locker room during gym period. Sally – always a gossip queen – would tell everyone who’d listen how I was staring at her in history, and how I lusted after her. Hell, by the time the rumor mill churned it out, and slid it through the grape vine, the story would be that I was jerking off to her in the bushes.

“Fucking high school,” I was so sick of this place, but I had one more year left at St. Vincent’s Academy for the Rich, Powerful, and Famous.

That wasn’t the actual name of St. Vincent’s Preparatory Academy, but it was still a spot-on description in my opinion. Tucked away on a few dozen acres of forest in Upstate New York; St. Vincent’s was the perfect place for the powerful to send their Ritalin-addled, sexually-frustrated, trust-fund teenagers. Away from the plebeians of the world, St. Vincent educated roughly six hundred future leaders of tomorrow. Or at least that’s what their propaganda said. They sure as shit charged enough for the privilege of educating.

“I’m glad you agree, Mr. Dupree,” Miller had a glint in his eyes that made me worried.

I don’t know why the fat, old bald guy hated me. Normally, a teacher hated their useless, slacker students who sat in the back and played on their phones throughout class. I didn’t do that; at least not in this class. History and language classes were about the only thing I was good at. Ask me about the American Revolution and I could give you time, date, and who was present at historical events throughout the important period in American history. Give me a foreign language to learn, and I could master it faster than anyone. Ask me about the periodic table, to solve for X, or to grammatically critique some shit by Walt Whitman, and you might as well be asking me to jump to the moon.

In fact, I was Miller’s best student, but he was still a grade-A douchebag to me. “Is he challenging me to be better,” I asked myself years ago when I had my first class with the closet sociopath.

The answer was a resounding fuck no. He was a sad old bastard who’d reached the apex of his education career a decade ago. He was bitter about it, and was willing to take that out on his pupils. Even worse, he had tenure, and could probably get away with murdering one of us under the right circumstances.

Today, he wasn’t trying to murder me, but he did

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