Prix Laurence - Bettembourg Prix Laurence 2020 - Luxembourg

Prix Laurence 2020

Zaglaniczny Julia - The Spymastress

General K. Drake

Everything around me freezed, as the laser bullet swished past my ear and I gracefully spinned away from the position I was just seconds ago. When you would’ve asked me a few years back what I think that my future holds for me, it wouldn’t occur to me that I would be here, constantly on missions with my life on the line and fighting for freedom and justice, after joining a group of rebels called ‘the Empire‘.

Yeah, the Empire…the name was chosen for a particular reason and our leader the Emperess certainly didn’t want to impress anyone with it.

The reason was buried deep in the history of the universe, long ago all the galaxies were all ruled by Imperators or Emperesses, until the takeover by the Order of the Spade and the members of the imperial family had to take cover and live with a low profile until just two years ago, the only remaining living Emperess Lorissa, called by her close friends Rys, started to gather an army in order to bring back the stability of power.

Dodging the next bullet, I rolled on the floor, taking three shots on my own, wounding the opponent. My heart gradually started to beat faster, as I continued to be one step ahead of the assailant and trying to hurt them . Suddenly, I saw an other bullet coming from the left and flew past me with a very familiar twitch, finally grazing the opponent’s tigh, who barely dived away.

The next events were a blur, me taking a shot in the same time as them and both of us losing our weapons. Not caring about that, I threw myself at them, sending them flying backwards with a clean jab. Then they hit a rock and their mask flew off revealing their face, the face of the Spymastress, Emerald Nevrakis.

My body began to shake, not with adrenaline, but with fury, almost madness. My head was pounding, all I could hear was the rush of blood in my veins and feel the fire in them. A second later I lifted my arm up, ready to strike.




The simulation disappeared before I could make any other move. My eyes immediately shot up to the control station, trying to find the person who stopped it and saw Lester Randall standing there with crossed arms, looking very unpleased and worried. I ran over to him, shooting him dagger stares.

–What’s that supposed to mean, Les – I got into his face. – I was training here in peace.

–I’m changing your training from here – he answered calmly. – You were training on these simulations non¬stop and I see that you’re getting very addictive to them and that shouldn’t be the point of this, Kate. You‘ll be training with Esther from now on until I say otherwise. I don’t want to see you hurt, Kate. One day you‘ll understand that I want the best for you.

It wasn’t the first time, Les interrupted my sim trainings. The simulations were older technologies to prepare us for any situations. The trainees kicked the sims off by themselves, simply by arriving on a precise spot in the arena indicated by the controls, then are launched either each in their own or all in one sim, it all depended on the overseers. As the term already said, the overseers were people who monitored every simulation and everyone had to be in that position at some point because they were replaced every two weeks.


The basic rules were very simple:

  1. Never train on simulation grounds without an overseer by the controls
  2. If the overseers see something very worrying on the screens with the trainees vitals or images of the simulation then they have the power to suspend the trainee in question
  3. The overseers have to be professional and absolutely mustn’t suspend the trainees out of personal reasons


And I’ve actually abused the first one, because I didn’t ask any of the overseers to tag along and control the training.Randall actually never scolded me for abusing the rules, he understood why I did that, but he was a very dear and caring friend and that’s why he wanted to suspend my trainings.

Somehow I knew that deep down, but in the moment I was just furius and didn’t accept these facts. I took my simulation helmet off and threw it in Les’s face, then stormed off, refusing to meet his eye.




Every member of the Empire had their own room, closed by voice registration or fingerprint scan. The rooms had the same structure: from the door on the right was a rather big bed with a night table by the head of it, the closet was straight ahead, not far from the night table and on the left you had a small library to fill the free time and finally the deposit for guns. The inside joke was that this room wasn‘t mine, the Council wanted to protect everyone joining them and these specially designed rooms should give the illusion of the personal space of a soldier, so in case of an invasion by the Order they wouldn‘t find anything in the first place and we would have time enough to evacuate the valuable paperwork.

Opening the deposit, I could appreciate the view of some older models of hand-, sniper- and machine guns, but the Empire made sure they weren‘t too old because otherwise we could risk to blow our illusion.

Grabbing one of the MGL-174 hanging on the wall on the back of the deposit, I turned its … … …30 degrees down and pulled the trigger. In the same moment the closet sled towards me and a bit towards the bookshelf, revealing a open passage to my actual quarters.

I wasn’t used to a lot of decorations so nobody who knew me wasn’t really surprised about the simple and monotone but also very handy rooms.

Entering the small hall with the walls painted in blue-greyish, I heard the soft buzz letting me know that the closet is back on its initial place. Taking the right turn, I went up to my bedroom to change into some oversized t-shirt and put my workout clothes into the laundry basket.

A few moments afterwards, while I was making some coffee in the kitchen, the small screen connected to the camera right outside of the fake bedroom lighted up with the information that someone’s requesting my approuvement for entering.

Glancing on the monitor, I recognised my twin immediately and let her in. 5 seconds later, I heard her stepping in and taking her shoes and khaki jacket off.

- Welcome home sis - I said, reaching for a second cup in one of the hanging cabinets. - Coffee?

- Hello to you too and yes, please - she finally poked her head in and made herself comfortable on one of the barstools.

We didn’t exactly look alike, sure we had the same dirty-blonde hair and blue-greyish eyes, but she cut her hair short and had a little bit more fair skin than me. What more, I had one tattoo on my right shoulder of a howling wolf.

- You’re a godsend - she murmured in satisfaction as a fuming cup appeared in her hands and I sat down next to her with mine. - Love you so much Rina.

We sipped our coffee in silence, sharing glances that said more than a million words in the universe. Since we were born, we had no one but each other, because our mother died the moment we showed up and our father was the one of the many persons sacrificed by the Spymastress. We were raised by foster parents and I was one of the first to join the Empire two years back and soon after Jess joined too. Although she had her own chambers, she stayed at mine because we didn‘t see each other very often. Jess was sent frequently on secret missions as the Empire‘s most talented spy.

- When‘s the next mission?

- In a few days I suppose - she sighed, rubbing her eyes. - I haven‘t more than 3 to 4 days to prepare my self for the next one.

- Well, for now don‘t worry about anything, I‘ll take care of it - I smiled and rubbed her shoulder.

- And there‘s something I was meaning to ask you - she turned to me and crossed her arms. - Les told me about the incidents of the last week. What‘s that about you training with the help of simulations without an overseer?

- I wanted to look her in the eyes and ask her why - Gritting my teeth, I let my hand drop in my lap and felt every inch of my body tensing up and my hands quickly shaped into fists until my knuckles were white. The anger burned in my veins again, enveloping my whole body. My sisters hand gripped my shoulder hard, forcing me to look at her and I grounded myself. - I‘m sorry, Jess. I just…

-I know - she whispered. - But you have to let go, because this caught up in the moment thing will destroy you at some time.

I just shook my head. How did she manage to control herself and let go of the past?  



ageschéckt den: 10:37 Fri, 17 January 2020 vum: Zaglaniczny Julia



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Dir kritt se am BicherKueb zu Beetebuerg.

Vum Juli un am BicherKueb zu Beetebuerg an och an Ärer Librairie:
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Kleng Lecture, déi Iech vläicht weiderbréngt:


-  Gespräche mit Freunden
Roman, Luchterhand, 2019


-  Allegro Pastell
Roman, KiWi, 2020


-  Auf Erden sind wir kurz grandios
Roman, Hanser, 2019

-  Nachthimmel mit Austrittswunden
Gedichte, engl./dtsch., Hanser, 2020

ERNESTO CARDENAL (1925 - 2020)

-  Transitreisender
Gedichte, Peter Hammer Verlag, 2008


-  Bergeners
Matthes & Seitz Berlin, 2018

mat 15 Joer
3. Präis beim Prix Laurence 2016

-  Lautlos
Roman, éditions guy binsfeld, 2019


-  Holland träumen
Lyrik, éditions guy binsfeld, 2019


-  Marie Adelheid
Eine politische Biografie (1912 - 1919)
éditions guy binsfeld, 2019

Reisen durch die junge Lyrik Europas

-  Hrsgb. F. Italiano, J. Wagner
Anthologie, Hanser, 2019


-  Hrsgb. N. Gomringer, M. Beyer
Anthologie, Voland & Quist, 2018


-  A Grace Paley Reader
Stories, essays, poetry

Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2017

-  Manchmal kommen ...
Gedichte, Schöffling & Co, 2018


-  Die schönsten Streichhölzer der Welt
Englisch - Deutsch, mit den Gedichten
aus Jim Jarmuschs Film Paterson
Dieterich'sche Verlagsbuchhandlung, 2017


-  Spitzen
Gedichte. Fanbook. Hall of Fame.
edition suhrkamp, 2018


-  Sämtliche Gedichte
DVA, 2013

-  Gesammelte Prosa
DVA, 2006

-  Sarah Kirsch u. Christa Wolf
Wir haben uns wirklich an allerhand gewöhnt
Der Briefwechsel, Suhrkamp, 2019


-  Tieflandsbucht
Die Gedichte, Schöffling, 2018


-  Femmes poètes de la Beat Generation
éditions Bruno Doucey, 2018


-  An den Ufern der Dunkelheit
Gedichte aus Palästina
Fischer Taschenbuch, 2013


-  Warum ich nicht im Netz bin
Gedichte und Prosa aus dem Krieg
Suhrkamp, 2016


-  Das Buch der klassischen Haiku
Hrsgb. Jan Ulenbrook
Reclam, 2018


Auteuren 2020


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