Hammer Spade and the Four Horsemen
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This book is available in the United Kingdom through Bertram Books
In book nine of a ten-book series, Hammer and his friends’ opponents are a shadowy group who call themselves The Four Horsemen and their mission is nothing less than the destruction of Western Civilization.
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In this continuation of The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse Hammer and his friends' mission continues. In volume one, Michael Clover infiltrated the Four Horsemen leadership council, Jack Kane and Clare Davis are assigned to the Black Horse of Famine group whose mission is to reduce the world’s food supply. Dave Quigley and Jim Travis are sent to Algeria on a mission by Red Horse of War group, whose aim is to foment armed conflict. In volume two, Tim Whealton and Jerrel Neuhaus are dispatched to Papua, New Guinea where Willie Wanderer leads them to a plant that produces the world’s most deadly natural poison. Hammer Spade and Shidee Callaway are sent to Tibet to learn from Tibetan wise man, Annyl Slohcin, how to destroy the souls of men. Then they all meet in Casablanca, Morocco where Michial Clover, aka Lord Phillip Norwich, has a surprise waiting for everybody
About the Books
Four horsemen of the Apocalypse
The Antichrist rides a white horse.
I looked, and there before me was a white horse! Its rider held a bow, and he was given a crown, and he rode out as a conqueror bent on conquest." This first horseman likely refers to the antichrist, who will be given authority and will conquer all who oppose him. The antichrist is the false imitator of the true Christ, as He will return on a white horse.
War rides a red horse.
Then another horse came out, a fiery red one. Its rider was given power to take peace from the earth and to make men slay each other. To him was given a large sword." The second horseman refers to terrible warfare that will break out in the end times.
Famine rides a black horse.
The third horseman is described in Revelation: and there before me was a black horse! Its rider was holding a pair of scales in his hand. Then I heard what sounded like a voice among the four living creatures, saying, ‘A quart of wheat for a day's wages, and three quarts of barley for a day's wages, and do not damage the oil and the wine!’” The third horseman of the apocalypse refers to a great famine that will take place, likely as a result of the wars from the second horseman. Food will be scarce, but luxuries such as wine and oil will still be readily available.
Death rides a pale horse.
The fourth horseman is mentioned in Revelation 6:8: "I looked, and there before me was a pale horse! Its rider was named Death, and Hades was following close behind him. They were given power over a fourth of the earth to kill by sword, famine and plague, and by the wild beasts of the earth." The fourth horseman of the apocalypse is symbolic of death and devastation. It seems to be a combination of the previous horsemen. The fourth horseman of the apocalypse will bring further warfare and terrible famines along with awful plagues and diseases. What is most amazing, or perhaps terrifying, is that the four horsemen of the apocalypse are just "precursors" of even worse judgments that come later in the Tribulation.
The elusive head of the Four Horsemen is Lord Philip Norwich a descendant of Edward of Norwich. His message to every recruit is, “The only element about our mission that is always the same is that it is never the same.” He is represented as the White Horseman of the Apocalypse.
A good yarn, but within the realm of possibility, especially if you knew one of the characters like my brother, Tim Whealton. Tim is a gunsmith by trade and is a "High Master Champion" in both rifle and pistol. I always thought he would be good in some type of clandestine operation. I also personally know some of the other characters in the story like Gerald Neuhaus, Jim Travis and Mike Clover, which made this book an exciting page-turner for me. The author is also an expert shooter and has much expertise in all types of firearms. He is also a student of ancient history and gives brief historical sketches of the various places in the story, which makes for an interesting read.
Excerpt From Chapter Eight
Things were uneventful until mid afternoon when they met a line of twenty painted native tribesmen wearing their best decorative drapery, bamboo tubes over their privates and carrying slender spears.
Tim was on point. The two columns stopped to stare at each other. Their point man said something to the tribesmen in line behind him. The one with the fiercest painted face came to the front and said something to Tim.
“What did he say Willy?”
“He wants to know what we are doing in his territory.”
“Tell him we are just passing through and we will not harm anybody?” Rough said.
Willy translated. The Chief said something else.
“He said white men always take something,” Willy said.
Jerrel was directly behind Tim and he was carrying the snake. The Chief moved past Tim and stopped before Jerrel and said something that sounded threatening to Jerrel. Jerrel stepped back. The chief advanced again and raised his spear.
“Willy, what is he saying?” Jerrel asked.
“I don’t know,” Willy replied. “But he’s mad about something.”
Then the other tribesmen started yelling and waving spears. The situation got very tense. Tim and Rough chambered shells in their shotguns. The chief advanced on Jerrel and jabbed at him with his spear. Jerrel parried his spear with his machete and in the process sliced off the end of the bamboo tube covering the chief’s penis. The chief, with a stricken expression, stopped and looked down. Jerrel also looked down. It became deathly quiet and tension rose to a new height.
“Offer him the snake,” Willy suggested.
Jerrel removed the snake from around his neck and offered it to the chief. The chief took it and draped it over his shoulder. Then, without a word, he marched by them followed by the members of his tribe who marched by staring straight ahead as if they were alone on the trail. Two minutes later, they were out of sight and the jungle sounds resumed as if nothing had happened.
“I guess he thought we were stealing his snake,” Tim said.
“No,” Rough replied, “he stole our snake. We’ll eat taro, mangos and paw-paw for supper instead of roast snake.”
While they were talking, Willy left the trail and returned a few minutes later with a bag of coconuts. They sat down, hacked the tops off with their machetes and drank coconut milk to settle their nerves.
“They looked as if nobody ever said a kind word to them,” Willy observed.
“And then they met Jerrel and he almost cut off the chief’s favorite tool,” Tim said.
They began to laugh.
“Did you see the chief’s expression when he looked down?” Rough asked.
“And Jerrel’s. Does the Marine Corps give a medal for lopping off your enemy’s dong?” Tim said between guffaws.
“You’re just jealous of my machete swinging skill,” Jerrel replied “Envy can never be creative, only imitative.”
“I’m glad he was behind me and couldn’t give me that stare of death like he gave you.”
A few minutes later it began to rain. They donned their ponchos and marched off in pursuit of their next adventure.
“How cheerfully the jungle seems to grin,” Willy sang. “How neatly it spreads its many claws. It welcomes the little people in, with gently smiling jaws.”
Excerpt From Chapter Fifteen
The bus began to overheat a few miles east of Chusul. The driver stopped at a roadside mechanic shop and announced that we would spend the night in Chusul. The mechanic gave us directions to a couple of local inns so Shidee and I shouldered our luggage and hiked into town looking for a place to stay. Shidee was having the time of his life.
Courtesy of Google Earth
On the way to the inn we passed a section where three pool tables were outside on the sidewalk and people were shooting pool as if it was an everyday affair. These were well-worn pool tables and it was obvious that they had had a rough trip to their destination. We found the inn and took the last vacant room. It didn’t have a door and it was furnished with two cots for people a foot shorter than we were. This was going to be a rough night, especially breathing at an altitude of 12,000’.
After we threw our stuff down in the room, we looked for a place to eat. At the other end of the street with the inn we found a place crowded with locals. When we went inside we were the only non-natives in the room. We found a table and I asked for a menu in English. A man at a table in the corner laughed out loud.
“You must be from out of town,” he observed over the babble of native voices.
“Yeah, we are,” I admitted. “How’d you guess?”
“Join me,” he said and motioned us to his table. “And tell me about yourselves.”
He was a native man who spoke English with an American accent. As we approached his table he rose and shook our hands.
“Gaozu Tang here,” he said. “Don’t see many Americans in this part of the world.”
“We don’t either,” I said.
He laughed. “Welcome to Chusul,” he said, “the home of nowhere.”
We took our seats.
“Want something to drink?” he asked.
“Yeah,” I replied. Shidee nodded his head.
Tang called out something in Chinese and the waiter rushed to comply.
“Why are you here?” Tang asked.
“The bus overheated and they stopped here to get it repaired,” I replied.
“Our buses are not very reliable,” Tang observed.
“I doubt if American buses would be much better at these altitudes,” I answered.
“Good comment. Who is your friend?” Tang asked.
“George Watson. We’re working together.”
“And where is Mr. Watson from?”
“Durham, North Carolina,” I replied.
“Ah, so. Mr. Watson is a southern gentleman.”
“We’re both from the South.” I remembered my manners. “I’m Sherlock Home,” I said.
“Your name is familiar to me,” Tang said.
“You’re thinking about the fictional detective, Sherlock Holmes,” I replied.
“Ah, so. Are you a detective?” Tang asked.
“I guess you could say so. Right now, I’m a diplomatic investigator.”
“For whom do you work,” he asked.
“Ah, so. And does the Chinese Government know you are in Tibet on a diplomatic mission.”
Our drinks came and Shidee got his first taste of rice wine. It was served in a bowl and Tang called it pinjopo.
“Mr. Watson, do you like our wine?” Tang asked.
“It tastes good,” Shidee replied.
“Don’t drink it too fast, George,” I cautioned.
“You sayin’ it’s got a big kick?” Shidee asked.
“Yeah and the thin air up here increases its potency,” I replied.
“I don’t want to get drunk,” Shidee said. “I might fall off a cliff.”
Tang laughed. “I will keep you away from cliffs, Mr. Watson. Drink all you like.” Then he asked, “Are you ready to order your meal?’
“Sure,” I replied.
“What would you like?”
“We don’t know anything about local dishes,” I replied. “Would you order for us?”
Tang smiled. “You are adventurous.”
“I guess. In my experience, local dishes are better than foreign versions of American dishes.”
“So you are an experienced traveler?”
“Yeah,” I replied.
Tang called the waiter and ordered our meals. Mr. Tang must have been a regular customer because he commanded their attention. When he called, they dropped what they were doing and rushed to serve him. I asked him if he was a regular customer.
“It’s the best restaurant in town,” he replied, “And I am well known in the area.”
“What do you do?” I asked.
“I too, am, how did you put it, a ‘diplomatic investigator’.”
“Small world,” I muttered. He worked for the Chinese Government.
Our meals came.
“The main dish,” Tang explained, “is a spicy soup made with barley noodles and mutton with boiled potatoes. They don’t grow much rice up here. The bread is a barley bread called balep korkun cooked in a skillet. The side dish with vegetables is called thukpa.”
I don’t know if it was because I was starving or the altitude but our meal was good. Shidee wolfed his down too.
When the waiter cleared the remains of our meals, Tang ordered new bowls of pinjopo and asked me what business I had in Shigatse.
“We’re going to see Annyl Slohcin.”
Tang frowned. “Why do you visit him?”
“We’re seeking advice.”
“What kind of advice does Annyl Slohcin have that the UN would want?”
“I don’t know.”
“You must be seeking some specialized information.”
“To be utterly frank,” I said, “We are on a fool’s errand for two organizations. One wants to learn how to corrupt mankind. The other wants to keep the first organization from accomplishing its mission.”
“So you are, in reality, counter spies.”
“You’re giving both organizations too much credit.”
Tang laughed. “You do not respect your employers, Mr. Home.”
“No, I do not,” I admitted.
“One must always respect one’s employers, Mr. Home.”
“I’m doing the job they assigned me. They didn’t ask me if I thought the assignment would accomplish anything worthwhile.”
“Did you offer your assessment to them?”
“And they told you to proceed anyway.”
Tang scratched his chin while he thought about that. “This is a conundrum of unusual aspects.”
“Yeah, it’s a conundrum all right.”
“Does your lack of commitment affect your ability to please two masters?”
“No. I always do my job.”
“I have a confession to make, Mr. Home and Mr. Watson.”
“We being here, having a meal and this conversation is no accident.”
That got Shidee’s attention.
“I figured that,” I admitted. “And I bet there was nothing wrong with the bus.”
Tang smiled. “You’re way ahead of me, Mr. Home.”
“And, I bet you’re about to tell us that your orders are to accompany us to Shigatse.”
“You are much too clever for your own good, Mr. Home,” Tang said “Yes, that is my assignment. Do you object?”
“No, I don’t care. And I know if I did, it wouldn’t matter.”
Tang rose from his seat. “We must leave early tomorrow. Since you have been such gentlemen about this, I will pay for our meals.”
“Thanks,” I said. “We’ll meet you at the bus tomorrow morning.”
Tang smiled. “Don’t trouble yourselves. I’ve already taken the liberty of moving you to better quarters. We’ll meet the bus together. Follow me to your new lodgings.”
Shidee and I were now prisoners of the Chinese Government.