Author: Julian Miles, Staff Writer

“I find charcoal best for landscapes, but cityscapes demand ink to capture their harsh edges. Living things I always work in coloured pencil, layering basic colours to achieve the myriad shades that life grows in.
“For battlefields, it’s charcoal for the vista, and sharp pencils to pick out the monochrome details of death.”
Looking up from the canvas, I watch the Burclanic officer flicking its gaze between outlines of this street hatched out in pen, and my other hand lightly resting a midnight blue automatic against its throat.
“But for close combat, I prefer an 11-millimetre Arduvant machine pistol. The combination of nineteen rounds and crystalline acid in the hollow points make such colourful statements in fizzing blood on any medium they spray across.”
I smile.
“Would you like to become art, or shall we call this mutinous little episode over?”
It swallows slowly, then drops its weapon.
Using the hand holding the pen, I beckon my people forward.
“Good thing you caught me on my break. I’m not as reasonable when on duty.”