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Anathema

Dutch World Domination

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Dunenewt poured himself another glass of whiskey- these days he needed no less then three to keep his hands from shaking. Life hadn't been easy on him after all. He drank the glass in one draught and slammed the bottle back on the table, a little to hard. It wobbled, fell and started to roll of the table. Trying to grab it before it reached the edge Dunenewt fell of his chair. As his head lay on his right ear he could see the bottle tumbling from the table. To him the bottle seemed to fall in slow motion, and he heard a voice yelling noooooo, realising it was his own. The bottle shattered on the stone floor. Glass shrapnel flung into his face and in his distorted state of mind this created a stingy, warm sensation that was not pleasant, but was far from real pain. Recovered, he saw that the transparant liquid of happiness was flowing down the drain hole in the floor.

For the love of god, nooo! he thought. It was his last bottle; he had opened it for breakfast on a regular sunday morning and it would be a full day before he could buy some more. Instinctively he crawled to the drain, wounding his hands in the glass splinters but he ignored them. Alas, it was to late...aside from a few drops, it was all gone.

He lowered his head and cursed at the floor, at the table, at everything. He became aware of the dreadful pain in his face, hands and soul. His mind returned to that one other dreadful event, that evening 3 years ago. Failing to block the memory he wailed silently and hoped nobody could see him like this...

That time the popularity of King Charles III had hit rock bottom, caused by gossip magazines and anti-monarchy propaganda coming from outside. The government approved of a series of measures intended to do something about this sort of rethoric and counter it with some of its own. Concerns regarding this form of "state propaganda", as it was called in some nations, lead the Republic of India to halt a major tea shipment for an indefinite amount of time.

Deprived of their much needed tea and feeling their king was a dipshit, the people were ready for regime change. Dutch forces crossed the Canal and headed for London, prepared for a heavy fight wich never came. Charles' reign collapsed like a card house and the English people did little to resist the Dutch, some of them in fact welcomed them with open arms. Charles was exiled and granted political asylum in Holland where he would be placed under continuous watch. A Dutch dynasty was immediately installed and the whole event was dubbed the "Second Glorious Revolution".

Throughout this there were loyalists of course, who did raise arms against the invaders. Most notably, a RAF Wing Commander loyal to Charles III sent a squadron of bomber aircraft to attack The Hague in retaliation. During their flight over the Canal, word reached them that Charles III had been captured and that London was in Dutch hands. Realizing the futility of their mission, the pilots broke off under the condition that they would receive amnesty. Most of them, including Dunenewt, regretted it ever since.

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It didn't stop with England. Several months after the Second Glorious Revolution, this article was posted in the New York Times.

Should we bow to the Dutch?

Things in America are about to be put upside down as a series of 200 year old documents were unearthed. Historians who have read the documents are saying that, contrary to popular belief, it was never the intention of the founding fathers to start an independent nation and in fact had very other plans for the old English colony. These documents were found in a safe in Amsterdam, wich was property of the first US ambassador to the Netherlands, according to local sources.

"We knew that back then, only 9 of 13 founding states had ratified the constitution, but declared it legal anyway." historian Hans Kooreveld was quoted as saying.

"What we did not know was that 5 of those 9 representatives were in fact never involved in the actual voting. This is of course quite shocking."

Jurists are now challenging the legal basis upon wich the original constitution was founded. A prominent lawyer from New York was quoted as saying "Since we now know the constitution was never legal in the first place, we have to discontinue its legal authority. The USA should never have existed, at least not in its current form."

Another, equally shocking document was found in the same safe. It was of a date earlier then the frauded constitution, but 2 months later then the Declaration of Independence. It's titled "Revocation of independece". Hans Kooreveld explains:

"In that age it was uncommon for a nation not to be ruled by a monarch of some sort. It was odd for such a conservative people as the Americans to sign a document that would turn their colony into a republic. Apparently they came to their senses after the Declaration, but did not want to return to the English crown. Instead the states wanted to gather themselves under another European monarch to rule over them, wich is not as odd as it seems- things like that happened before. Their first choice, according to the new found document, was Stadtholder William V of the Netherlands, probably because the Netherlands was the first country to give support to the English colonists."

Most American jurists have pointed out that the document has no legal authority, because the document appears to be a draft for an official document, wich never came into being. It offers no solution for the invalidity of the constitution.

President Bush, who was in his ranch in Texas, was asked his opinion about what should be done.

"Chosing the Dutch as our new overlords? That's the dumbest thing I ever heard, and I hear a lot of dumb things in the White House! But if it's the will of the Founding Fathers, well who am I?"

Five Republican senators have said to the New York Times that America needs to give the Founding Fathers all the respect they deserve, declare the constitution null and void and enter negotiations with the Dutch . Several prominant democrats were asked what they thought, but they said they said they had no opinion.

"We have to stay consistent." Hillary Clinton said on behalf of the party.

Several months later the Americans signed a document that brought them directly under Dutch influence. India was soon to follow, the reason being that for many years already the Dutch had such a strong influence over India, that it would be nonsensical for India to remain independent. Particularily the tea industry, wich had been entirely bought by the Dutch about a year before the Second Glorious Revolution, lobbied the Indian government to join in.

Now that Dutch territory had grown immensely in size, some major changes had to occur in the government. A new federal government was created by Gryphon and Anathema, both members of a small and secretive organisation of Dutchmen. The new provinces were granted some self governance, but Dutch people were stationed on all the important posts. The structure of the state would undergo change upon change as new territories were added. China was assimilated in what resembled a corporate takeover, Russia was added after a coup d'etat staged by Dutch infiltrators and the European Union was subdued by endless bureaucratic red tape, its member states overtaken before they knew what they had done. The Dutch no longer tried to veil their intentions and openly declared their city The Hague "capitol of the world". Men and women of the free world responded by setting fire to Dutch embassies, stoning their personell to death and forcing Dutch people among them to return to safer grounds. Despite fierce resistence, the Dutch empire kept expanding its borders till this very day.

Denmark deserves some special intention. After it was conquered, the overlords initially wanted to pave it and turn the country into one huge parking lot. One day a certain Sir Sard of Denmark came to The Hague and offered his services- as a soldier, that is. He gathered a band of bloodlusted savages from Scandinavia and to prove their worth, they marched to Poland and smashed down a revolt that had taken place. Gryphon was particularily impressed, and there was another reason they would be valuable. The Dutch media was always a thorn in the side and screamed hell and murder when even a single Dutch soldier would die abroad. They would not care about foreigners. They were hired as mercenaries into a new unit, the Varangian Guard, named after the Nordic mercenaries that fought for the Byzantine emperor centuries ago. Over the years the Varangian Guard proved instrumental in conquering new territories and keeping them subdued, and the regular Dutch army was deployed less and less.

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"Issss Everybody pressssent?" a voice hisses from the darkness.

"No, Ken's not here yet. Neither is Rene." replies another mysterious person, it's silouete standing in the few rays of moonlight that enter through the roof's window.

A clank sounds, followed by several swear words.

"F*ckdammit! Somebody find the light switch before I break my neck!"

"There's no switch in this room. But as you wish..."

A snap of fingers sounds, and lights turn on abruptly in the room wich blind those present.

"Noooo! I hatesss the light! SSSSH!"

"Timenn stop it, it's not funny anymore." says Anathema with a sigh.

"Sorry." Timenn shrugs and proceeds to pick from his nose.

"You can start the meeting now, Ken's not going to come." said a new voice coming from the farthest corner. It's Rene, sitting in a chair with his legs crossed. A ventilation mesh above him appears a bit loose, and his tuxedo has a speck of dust on it, a clear reminder of Rene's part in the takeover as head of the intelligence department.

"How long have you been sitting there?" asked Timenn, slightly distracted as he struggles to retract his index finger from his nose.

"About a minute. Ken told me over the phone he's not coming. He didn't say why."

"All right then, we'll do this without him and fill him in later." Gryphon said from the table in the centre. "Please be seated."

The sinister bunch sat down around the table. 7 total, all Dutch: Anathema, Arutha, Gryphon, Rene, Nyar and Timenn. As the host, Gryphon sat on the head of the table. A quick glance of the room proved confusing for most of them, it looked like a crossbreed between an office and a penthouse.

"What is this place, and why aren't we holding our meeting here instead of in het Binnehof?"Nyar inquired.

"Our enemies would not expect it. We must not submit to predictable patterns, for our own safety." Anathema replied. He turned his head towards Gryphon. "But I did not pick the location."

"Since yesterday, this place belongs to me." he said with satisfaction. "It used to belong to the boss of some oil company I think...anyway, I'll be living here one or two days per week, as well coordinate a personal project from here."

"Personal project?" Arutha asked. Like the rest, he was all ears. Except Rene, apparently.

"Gryphon why don't you get us a drink? A martini for me, please."

"Shaken, not stirred right?" Gryphon asked rethoricly. Rene rarely drank anything else. Gryphon snapped his fingers for the second time and this time two attractive ladies came in with a cart full of liquour. They parked it a few feet away from Gryphon and started pouring in drinks for the conspirators. None of them were short on cash, but with Gryphon's lifestyle betrayed it the most of all.

"This is what, your 4th penthouse in your posession?" Timenn was surprised about Gryphon's ability to squander cash. Gryphon nodded.

"In this city, yeah."

Anathema picked up the conversation where it had left off.

"This personal project of yours...is that new lackey of yours- Ordos45 right?- part of it?"

"Ordos45 is just a personal assistant." Gryphon said. A hint of agitation, or maybe fear, could be read from his eyes. "He has a minor role in it. I'm not going to tell you more now, except that it will greatly strenghten our position."

Nobody asked further. Everyone had his ways of doing things and did not expect eachother to disclose their secrets, except if the dominion was in danger. Nyar introduced another subject.

"I've taken the position of overseer on that new project we talked about last time. I think we may need to give it another name, though."

"The one that involves the doomsday device?"

"Yeah, that one."

"Good, that should give us some leverage if people ever decide they don't need us." Gryphon said as he skipped through a few sheets of paper.

"Next issue. Right now Dutch influence reaches over 79% of the Earth's surface. I think it's time we..." Timenn began. Anathema only payed a bit attention. It was obvious Gryphon's "personal project" was something huge, and Anathema did not expect he was going to like it.

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The meeting quickly descended into chaos. Rene has left to go after the girls who had brought in the liquor, Arutha passed out after having taken numerous shots of vodka in a drinking contest with Gryphon, who in turn is confronted with accusations of treason by Anathema. As Gryphon is fully intoxicated at the time he responds by yelling at Anathema. Timenn at first tries to keep order by breaking the two quarelers apart, then leaves the room in a state of high pissed-offness. After a while Nyar officially breaks off the meeting even though several important issues have been left undiscussed. Anathema, Nyar and Timenn leave the compound. Gryphon is left behind to deal with Arutha, and nobody knows where Rene is.

Anathema's pearl white limousine stould parked in front of the building where he had left it. His driver, erjin999, stould whistling by it. Probably hiding something, Anathema kept thinking. His suspicions were confirmed as he got closer and noticed the scratches on both sides of the limo. He turned his head towards erjin999 and gave him a devastating look.

"Sorry boss" he stuttered. "I went to the McDonalds while you were gone and..."

"....and you tried to maneouver a 10m long limo into the McDrive." Anathema sighed.

"Well...yeah."

"Mind your accent goddammit!" Anathema yelled.

"Sorry, good sir." erjin999 said in a stereotypical British accent, complying with his master's wishes.

"When I hire a British driver, I expect him to talk in proper British fashion! Now James, take me back to my mansion."

"My name's not James!" erjin999 protested.

"Shut the hell up and do your job, before I fire you." he said and made a gesture to the car door. Erjin swallowed hard and opened the door for his boss. Anathema got seated in the car, while erjin took the driver seat. He drove backwards 2 metres or so and crashed into a light post, then drove off into some other direction.

A while later, Anathema started looking through the back window nervously. A drop of sweat appeared on his forehead.

"James take a turn left, and make a detour through the east of the city. We're being followed."

Erjin saw only a single car who was just taking a turn into a totally different direction and sighed.

"He'll be back I tell you." Anathema said ominously.

Half an hour later they finally arrived at Anathema's mansion, in one of the rich areas of the city. Erjin, now totally pissed after being called "James" the entire ride, steps out and opens the door for Anathema. Anathema takes a good look around and notices something is wrong, but he can't put his finger on what. Something is wrong. His natural reflex is to flee so he gets back in the car.

"We're leaving, for one of my secret hideouts. It's not safe here tonight. Retrieve my notebooks from inside and get back here."

Erjin walks to the front door and murmers something, of wich only paranoid ******* could be made out.

"I heard that!" yells Anathema back. His vision absorbs the street and everything in it. He still can't see what it is that triggered his spider sense. Maybe he was wrong after all...maybe he was paranoid, just as erjin999 said. He then wondered if he had been treating his driver badly.

His train of thought was suddenly disturbed as his mansion exploded in a huge fireball, so bright it blinded him. Burning roof pans rain from the sky and hammered into the limousuine. Some random bypassers screamed as they searched for cover. It didn't take long before the street was filled with firetrucks, the police cars only half a minute behind them. Anathema decided it was safe to go out now and stepped out of the limo, and let the entirety of the event make it's impact on his mind.

"So I was right after all." he said after a while, voice calm. "Sorry erjin, guess that serves you for being stupid."

He took his cell phone from his jacket and dialed a number.

"Hey, it's me. I need a new limo... oh, and a new driver! When you're done with that, you can get working on a new house for me...yes, it happened again. No, I don't know who it was this time...though I have a few good guesses...make sure the driver is British!....ok, bye then!"

Anathema stashed his phone back into his jacket and walked away, told some cops to "piss off" when they asked what he was doing here at this time. After recognising him, the cops backed slowly away in astonishment. Anathema's thoughts went back to Gryphon and all his secrecy around his new project and around Ordos45. Gryphon had been very much drunk when the meeting ended, so maybe it was him who figured it was a good idea to assasinate him. That, or maybe Romanian rebels...or maybe his cranky neighbour? Maybe it was time to hire some security.

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