The mythical Excalibur was lodged in stone, that only the rightful King of England might pull it.








Excalibur is the name of the anti-piracy (ultra-short) pulsed laser cannon fitted to the Elizabeth Swann, fore and aft, a modern sword. The magical targeting system is called Merlin, after King Arthur's legendary magician. And the taser system is called Pendragon. In reality, the taser is more of a variable stun weapon with built in conductors on the hull at strategic points, rather then any barb that is fired. Inspired by 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, the Walt Disney version of Jules Verne'e classic.




330 20’S, 1520 E – Nelson’s Bay, and a cove on the Australian East Coast. The Elizabeth Swann glided silently through the giant roll up doorway. She had completed her maiden voyage with flying colours. John expertly piloted the vessel into the wet hangar with Dan watching every move interestedly. He applied reverse thrust to bring the boat to a halt. The two men had grins from ear to ear. The boat was full of surprises, but there was much to learn. The two colleagues exited the command module along the under-deck walkway, then down the port wing walkway, and excitedly tied up Elizabeth fore and aft, eager to compare notes and grab some tucker.


“I could eat a horse” said Dan, “adventuring is a hungry business!” 


“Watch this,” said John as he pulled a small key fob sized transmitter from his trouser pocket. He pressed one of the buttons, and all the hatches closed and locked. “She’s now alarmed.”


Impressed, Dan raised his eyebrows and nodded, even though it was he who mostly wired up the boat.

Without wasting any time, Dan prodded the kick start lever on his trusty Honda dirt bike. The 600cc four stroke engine sprang into life. 

“Back in a jiffy skip,” he shouted donning a helmet, as he headed for the exit and Raymond Terrace. 

“The usual?”


“You beauty,” acknowledged John, exaggerating his slight Aussie accent, and with that the Honda blazed a dust trail, along the wharf, front wheel grabbing air, amid a purposeful whaaa, whaaa and some well timed gear shifting. 

“Kids,” mooted John, thinking back to his hey days on two wheels, wistfully.

Thirty minutes later, the two men sat munching on ½ pound burgers with everything, French fries, and sucked milk shakes through a twirl straw, just like a couple of students. The light was dim in the hangar with the fluorescents off and the outer doors closed. 

“I’ve always hankered after the perfect burger.” 

“Me too,” said Dan, “super size me.” 

“Nah, I’m into quality. A balanced meal nutritionally. Protein, roughage and salad. It’s gotta be a custom deal. In fact, I’ve never found a perfect burger, not even in any high-class restaurants. Come close to the perfect desert though, at a place in Sussex. Ever heard of Banoffi pie.” They ate their fill at record pace.

“Naughty,” both men said at the same time, wiping the flour and licking their lips.

The Swann gently bobbed as a large MFV passed by the jetty outside, catching the captain’s attention. John’s eyebrows arched, his eyes narrowed, quizzically. He’d noticed again there was a round plate below the nose of the command module. He squinted, concentrating on the panel. Something important should fill that void? Was it just forward planning, or was something missing. He’d left the detail stuff to Dan, but didn’t like question marks. It was odds on that something was missing. It bothered him, Dan too.

“Let’s have a tidy up,” said John, leaping up.

He collected all the burger packaging and deposited that in large wheelie bin. They didn’t know where to start? There were empty boxes everywhere. In fact, a big pile had accumulated to one side of the hangar as boxed parts had been taken off the racks of shelving, the parts fitted and the boxes discarded. John opened the side door to a stream of light flickering on dust particles. He motioned outside, and started carrying flattened cardboard outside.

“We’ll take this to recycling tomorrow first thing.” Both men then raced each other, to load a VW camper van and a trailer. Finally, the hangar was cleared ready for sweeping.

“What’s in this crate?” said Dan, brushing a heap of accumulated dust onto the floor, from a canvas covered pine crate 1 metre by 1.5 metres by 2 metres, with rope handles at either end.

Somehow this box had been overlooked, tucked away in the corner, covered in a natural beige tarpaulin. John came over carrying a canvas toolbag that had seen a lot of wear. The duo pulled off the tarp, amid more dust clouds, emerging with mucky faces, somewhat bemused. 

“No time like the present,” said John, pulling a gorilla bar from his bag. He carefully inserted the sharp chiselled end under one corner, pushing hard. The corner lifted twenty millimetres, allowing him to apply more leverage. Then fifty millimetres. Working his way along, one whole side lifted enough to prize the lid off completely.

Inside the crate was compartmentalised, which in itself seemed unusual. All the parts were wrapped in a soft cloth, with a metal film coated plastic foam wrapping underneath. Obviously, sensitive electrical components. 

“Hold on,” said Dan. “We’d better take precautions.” He turned on the fluorescent lights and laid out a clean dust cloth of the type used by decorators, over a metal framed worktop. He earthed himself, then unwrapped the components one by one, laying them on the cloth. 

“This looks like some kind of advanced cannon,” said John.

Dan was thinking the same, nodding in agreement. The two men stood silently staring at the gleaming array of precision engineered parts, a gimbaled, motorised mechanism, some kind of telescopic aimer and a satin matt black tubular assembly with giant heat sink fins. There was also a good deal of cabling and some black control boxes. Finally, there was a beautifully bound A5 instruction booklet.

“Ah, ha”, Dan leapt on the manual. "Merlin, Excalibur?"












90,30’N, 520 E – A bright orange sun slowly rose above the gently lapping waters of the Indian Ocean, climbing high into the eastern sky. The air was warm and dry and an offshore breeze carried with it a hint of dry grass. The ripples reflected the giant orb, turning dark grey to blue. It was going to be another beautiful African day.

Somaliland, the horn of Africa, is a vast natural expanse of untrained flora and arid dunes. Four silhouettes stirred from slumber, breaking camp and dousing their fire. In a dawn raid a small untidy red and yellow pirate boat was being pushed down the beach at Bender Beila, on the west coast. The sun climbed higher revealing four lithe dark men in loose clothing purposefully rolling their boat, nicknamed ‘Dollars,’ into the sea in typical beach launched fashion on logs. Once into the surf, all the men quickly boarded the boat. The last man started the boat’s large V6 Mercury engine. ‘Dollars’ then quickly sped off from the shore out to sea amid the changing pitch of it’s outboard and considerable sea spray, as the propeller reached its efficiency range. 

The pirates were heavily armed with a deck-gun and each crew member bore automatic weapons, and one of the group a portable missile launcher and a huge toothy smile. The pirates had been camped on watch, on a tip off, waiting for an unusual looking ship. They’d been offered a handsome payment to capture the database on board. When the Elizabeth Swann hove into view; at first, it seemed a rather daunting target for the pirates, for its unusual design. But, they quickly decided that it was small and easy to overpower, and potentially rich pickings. With a customer already in the wings it seemed easy cash. The remainder of the craft and it’s crew, were icing on the cake, to be ransomed in the usual way.

As the pirates came to within 1000 metres, their boat, triggered an automatic proximity alarm on the Swann’s radar system. Coming in closer from behind and on a direct bearing, their approach raised the alarm bleep level many decibels, waking a slumbering John Storm who was slouched in the command chair half asleep, unshaven, with his hat over his eyes. John tilted his hat up at the front to scan the ships radar with one eye and noticed a fast moving blip on the radar screen, heading straight for his ship, represented as the centre of the screen. He reached out to the console, and tapped a few buttons on a small computer style pad, which brought up a picture of the pirate vessel on a separate large flat-screen display, which he zoomed into and locked onto as a target, simply by tapping a dedicated target button. Oh hell, he thought to himself, shaking himself to regain full composure, just when I thought it was safe to grab a few winks. The Elizabeth Swann had an excellent autopilot system in Hal, that lulled the crew into a state of reliance, which many yachtsmen succumb to, especially when short handed. No point in having a dog and barking yourself, say some, but keeping an alert deck watch habit, is a sailor’s must.

John and his techie buddy, Dan Hawk, had sailed from Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, where they’d enjoyed meeting a distinguished group of archaeologists who were on an anthropological field trip in the famous rift valley, the cradle of modern man. They wanted access to the ‘Ark’, the now famous onboard DNA archive, which John had spent many years developing as a student. In exchange, John had been given some more rare samples to increase his database, a sort of intellectual swaps. The last thing that John or Dan wanted when on such a mission, was any complications, and certainly nothing that might threaten the safety of the Elizabeth Swann, which was itself a technological showpiece. However, the Ark it would seem, was in high demand. They were heading to El Iskandariya, formerly Alexandria, via the Red Sea.

John reached for a mike and spoke into it quietly. “Dan, are you there buddy, over.” He flipped the switch to receive. He knew Dan was in his bunk, probably fast asleep. While waiting for a reply, John flipped open a plain flap on the command console, almost impossible to see, if you didn’t know it was there. Inside, was a sunken joystick, which he moved, and immediately green cross-hairs appeared on the screen. At the same time an external panel on the nose of the Swann opened to reveal a compact and harmless looking matt black tube with fins along the barrel, only just visible, which was guided remotely from inside the ship with incredible accuracy. John moved the joystick, tracking the boat with the green sights, which turned red as the vessel came into sight of the weapon. The pirate boat had now slowed somewhat to gain attention from the rear helm, which was unmanned. So they accelerated to get ahead of the Swann and lurched to pass on the port side of the ship just ahead, as they noticed the gleaming windshields, in preparation for what looked like their attack. They were completely unaware that they’d been spotted and tracked for the last 700 metres.

John armed the ships laser cutter, 'Excalibur,' switching to pulse mode, when powerful releases of energy had the same effect as a cannon, except that the firing was near silent. John hit the record button on another pad on the console. He wanted this on a hard-drive, just in case of recriminations from any of the neighbouring authorities, who frequently patrolled this stretch of ocean. Thankfully, the ships cameras recorded in hi resolution, similar to broadcast quality, to capture every detail.

Large capacitors stored up to 2000 kilowatts of energy for an instant burst release, not unlike that from a CDI spark plug ignition system, only much beefier discharge, which the ships batteries could not deliver without damage to their electrodes. Unaware of the danger his crew were in, the leader of the pirates, a tall lean man, wearing a dirty grey sweatshirt and baggy blue trousers, lifted a hailer to his mouth. He signaled to a mate carrying a rusty big bore rifle, to fire a warning shot at Elizabeth Swann's hull. “Dan, are you about old chum,” said John into his handheld microphone. Before any reply came, a shot thumped into the Swann’s 5083 alloy hull, just below the front port windshield. “That’s done it,” said John involuntarily, as he instinctively pressed the fire button. John would have to repair that hole, and the culprits would pay.

The Somali’s didn’t feel the strike, which vaporised their thin aluminium stern plating at the water line with just a squeal of steam, as the waves splashed about their hull and they waved their weapons at the Swann, as if their favourite football team had just scored a goal, in premature victory salute. A hole about seventy millimetres in diameter had opened up thirty centimetres underwater as their boat bobbed. The pirate captain clicked the button to shout his demands at the Swann's crew, through his loud hailer, then felt something was wrong as his boat had stopped bobbing quite so much and was lower in the water. He looked back at his mate on the tiller, who looked forward, equally puzzled and shrugged.

Seawater was gushing into the pirate boat sucking it down at the rate of ten millimetres a second. As the pirates struggled to come to terms with the sinking of their boat, they looked at one another accusingly, wondering if they should fire another shot at the strange ship, while looking for clues about the boat. The pirate captain was silent in confusion. Twenty seconds later and they were ankle deep in water, at which point they knew their boat was doomed. Hastily, one pirate unpacked an inflatable canister, and pulled the cord to inflate it. Another pirate rushed to help, and they launched it over the side, throwing their weapons into it. They just managed to jump into the water alongside, before their boat slid gently under the waves, amid a flurry of froth and flotsam, the deck gun the last part to disappear.

John slowed Elizabeth such as to keep the pirates ahead. “Dan, Dan, where are you?.” A voice came from behind him. 


“Here skip.” John whirled to see Dan yawning, bleary eyed, hair disheveled. 


“Better give him another blast skip, said Dan looking out the windscreen.”


John turned back to see the pirates scrambling aboard and reaching for their weapons. They weren’t about to give in without a fight. John reduced the laser’s output, and fired another burst at the bow of the partly inflated life-raft, at which point all the pirates efforts to aim their guns at the Swann, turned to dust. Now, they were struggling just to stand up as the inflatable’s nose melted.

“Ever had that sinking feeling” John couldn’t help himself. 


“It’s like trying to stand up in a hammock,” retorted Dan, as they watched the pirates struggle to get out from the sinking dinghy.


The pirates tried to stay afloat and carry their weapons, a difficult task as a short training exercise. Near impossible, for very long. John ended any thoughts of further resistance using the ships loud hailer. 


“Gentlemen, I suggest that you let go your weapons, or I’ll be forced to fire again, this time at you. Keeping hold of your guns will be taken as a hostile act.”


The pirates looked at each other, only two spoke English, Hence, a few seconds of rapid translation followed, after which they all dropped their guns into the sea, never to be seen again.

John radioed for help using the international emergency frequency. 


“Hello, this is the Elizabeth Swann calling coastguard services off the east cost of Somalia. Our position is 90,30’N, 520 E, over.”


He repeated the message again and again, stopping to give Dan instructions. Dan went aft and returned with a hand gun from the ships emergency cupboard and a tazer, sporting a huge smile. Suddenly, the radio came to life.


“Ahoy Elizabeth, this is HMS Surefire. We’re at 90,’N, 520 E, what can we do for you? over. Batteries dead?” 


Cheek, thought John, grinning at Dan.


“Hello Surefire, we’ve captured four Somali pirates, can you help?”


“Help? That’s why we’re patrolling. How did you manage that - I mean, nobody’s captured so many pirates before.” 

John told Dan to throw a couple of lifejackets to the pirates, and keep an eye on them. He also had them on screen, but it seemed unfair to keep Excalibur aimed at them - overkill. The pirates looked up at the Swann with a new respect. They could see Dan had sidearms and were not sure how their boat disappeared beneath them, without a shot fired. It all seemed like magic and voodoo, something Africans take very seriously. They would cause no more problems.

“Surefire, just get here as soon as possible and we’ll explain, over.”

“Elizabeth, that’s affirmative, ETA about 30 minutes. The skipper’s name is Hawkins. He sends his regards. Over and out.”

The 'Surefire' arrived in 23 minutes. Fifteen minutes after that, and a helicopter was hovering overhead with a gaggle of reporters filming the recovery of the hapless pirates. 

“So much for our quiet little excursion, skip.” 

John looked at Dan. “It doesn’t rain ….” 

“But it pours,” said Dan.

The pirates scrambled aboard HMS Surefire, keeping their distance from the Swann. A warship held few mysteries. Far safer.

“Hello Elizabeth Swann, am I speaking to John Storm.” 

“Hello Surefire, is that Captain Hawkins?” said John. 

“It is indeed, and I’d like that explanation. The pirates are behaving like lambs.”


“Come aboard, why don’t you. Teas are on us. Over and out.”

John cradled the mike and went topsides to welcome his visitor. “Dan, put on a brew, if you please.” Dan said nothing. He was parched.

The two ships slowly maneuvered alongside, when ropes were thrown down from the Surefire, and they tied up. Captain Hawkins nimbly scaled a rope ladder, down to the right outrigger of the Swann, then onto the walkway. Tea was eventually served, for real, by which time the Captain had been sworn to secrecy as to the method of sinking.

“No wonder they’re so subdued. Who wouldn’t be.”

The two men parted friends with grins from ear to ear. Captain Hawkins took much of the credit of the capture, with the grateful thanks of John and Dan, who resumed their journey into the Red Sea, heading for the Suez Canal on their way to El Iskandariya.

In the forward module, John slumped into the comfortable command seat. Dan was standing behind admiring the view, when John turned and winked.

“Perhaps now I can get some shut eye.” He pulled his cap down over his face.

Dan grinned, as he headed to the rear module. He was going back to his bunk. The remainder of the journey was thankfully uneventful.











Taser devices are the stun gun's hard-hitting cousin, taking down intruders like no other. Involuntary muscle spasms, unbearable pain and an experience to remember. 

Electro-Muscular Disruption (EMD) technology, like Tasers, are designed to deploy a low level shock when used on subjects. Tasers are also known as non-lethal or less-lethal electroshock weapons that are less likely to result in death when compared to firearms.

TASER Electronic Control Devices work by immobilizing a target through a process called "neuromuscular incapacitation." When the darts are fired and enter the subject the body locks up, preventing the individual from moving for a number of seconds. The two probes create a circuit, jamming the electrical signals that run throughout the body and causing involuntary muscle contractions. Once the cycle is over, the muscles become freed and the target is able to move voluntarily again.

Most importantly, there is no permanent damage. The reason there is no lasting damage or ill effects is because like stun guns, the TASER works off high voltage and low amperage, providing a stunning effect but not harming the host. They operate on 30 cycle and and 10 seconds. A cycle commences with each pull of the trigger.

TASER, also called taser, in full "Tom A. Swift Electric Rifle," handheld device that incapacitates a person by transmitting a 50,000-volt electric shock. The Taser fires two small darts, connected to the device with thin wires, up to a distance of approximately 11 metres (35 feet). The darts can penetrate clothing and, once they make contact with the target, deliver the electric shock, which disrupts the target’s nervous system, resulting in temporary incapacitation. The Taser is not considered a firearm, because it uses compressed nitrogen to launch the darts. A Taser can also be used as a stun gun by pressing it directly against the target’s body, thereby administering the electric shock.

The Taser was first developed in the mid-1970s by American inventor Jack Cover. Taser is an acronym for Tom A. Swift Electric Rifle (the Tom Swift books about an inventor of amazing gadgets were a childhood favorite of Cover) and is a brand name for the device, which is manufactured by Taser International. During the 1990s, the Taser was introduced to law enforcement use as an alternative to deadly force. As of 2011, more than 15,000 law enforcement agencies in the United States used the Taser.


Jack Cover, a NASA researcher, began developing the first Taser in 1969. By 1974, Cover had completed the device, which he named TASER, using a loose acronym of the title of the book Tom Swift and His Electric Rifle, a book written by the Stratemeyer Syndicate under the pseudonym Victor Appleton and featuring Cover's childhood hero, Tom Swift., as the Taser delivers an electric shock. This was done on the pattern of laser, as both a Taser and a laser fire a beam at an object.

The first Taser model that was offered for sale, called the TASER Public Defender used gunpowder as its propellant, which led the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms to classify it as a firearm in 1976.

Former TASER International CEO Patrick Smith testified in a TASER-related lawsuit that the catalyst for the development of the device was the "shooting death of two of his high school acquaintances" by a "guy with a legally licensed gun who lost his temper". In 1993, Rick Smith and his brother Thomas founded the original company, TASER, and began to investigate what they called "safer use of force option[s] for citizens and law enforcement". At their Scottsdale, Arizona, facilities, the brothers worked with Cover to develop a "non-firearm TASER electronic control device". The 1994 Air TASER Model 34000 conducted energy device had an "anti-felon identification (AFID) system" to prevent the likelihood that the device would be used by criminals; upon use, it released many small pieces of paper containing the serial number of the TASER device. The U.S. firearms regulator, the ATF, stated that the Air TASER conducted energy device was not a firearm.

In 1999, TASER International developed an "ergonomically handgun-shaped device called the Advanced TASER M-series systems," which used a "patented neuromuscular incapacitation (NMI) technology." In May 2003, TASER International released a new weapon called the TASER X26 conducted energy device, which used "shaped pulse technology." On July 27, 2009, TASER International released a new type of TASER device called the X3, which can fire three shots before reloading. It holds three new type cartridges, which are much thinner than the previous model. On April 5, 2017, TASER announced that it was rebranding itself as Axon to reflect its expanded business into body cameras and software. In 2018, TASER 7 conducted energy device was released, the seventh generation of TASER devices from Axon.





... ...

Abdullah Amir

Middle eastern marine captain

Ahmed Saleh - Port of El Dekheila

Fisherman who finds location Cleopatra's tomb

Ark, The

Interactive DNA database

Captain Nemo

Interactive autonomous navigation system

Charley Temple

Adventurous researcher & cameraman

Cleopatra, last Pharaoh queen of Egypt reborn

The reincarnated Mummy

CyberCore Genetica

Nano super computer, world's fastest

Dan Hawk

Electronics wizard & 2nd mate E. Swann

Dr Roberta (Bobbie) Treadstone

Blue Shield ocean division, Newcastle Uni

Elizabeth Swann

World's most advanced AI hydrogen ship

Excalibur, Merlin & Pendragon

Anti-piracy laser & taser weapons system

George Franks

Estate trustee


Advanced onboard Artificial Intelligence

Incubus™ & Replivator™ machines

High tech cloning & replicating equipment

Jack Mason

CIA contact, sometime double agent

Jill Bird

BBC news anchor, overseas services

John Storm


Julius Caesar

Roman general who loved Cleopatra

Kitty Kat (Katie)

Ships cat and mascot, who loves fishing

Marjorie Boyle

Backpacker/blogger, Trinidad

Mark Antony

Lover's suicide pact with Cleopatra

Professor Douglas Storm

Genius & great uncle to John Storm

Professor Jacques Pierre Daccord

UNESCO, subsea archaeology division

Sam Hollis

Reporter, Trinidad Bugle

Steve Green (Greeno)

Freelance investigative bloodhound

Suki Hall (Suzuki)

Marine biologist

US President Lincoln George Truman

Supreme commander US military

William Bates (Billy the Kid)

US computer genius & CyberCore Genetica







Adolf Hitler - (Circle of Six)

WWII 3rd Reich & reserve 4th Reich architect

Alexis Luther - Panama

The Panamanian running man, a replicant

Baron Heinrich Richthofen

Obsessed 4th Reich, Neo Nazi occultist

Erwin Rommel - (Circle of Six)

WWII Afrika Korps, Field Marshall

Franco Francisco

Italian scientist, cloning expert 

General Sir Rodney Dunbar

Head of MI6 human enhancement

Harold (Dirty Harry) Holland

Chief Constable, Scotland Yard

Hermann Göring - (Circle of Six)

WWII Luftwaffe Reichsmarschall

Husani Hassan

President elect of Egypt

Joseph Mengele - (Circle of Six)

WWII Nazi Dr. Human selective breeding expt.

Karl Donitz - (Circle of Six)

WWII Nazi submarine captain

Martin Borman - (Circle of Six)

WWII Nazi administrator/manager

Klaus von Kolreuter

Swiss scientist, human genome expert

Musa Bomani

Hired Egyptian tomb raider

Nicholas (Nick- The Devil) Johnson MP

UK Minister for Defence


Roman emperor waged war on Cleopatra

Roberto Ferrara

Italian spy Vatican & Interpol, double agent

Rudolf Kessler

Nazi Egyptologist/archaeologist

Safiya Sabuka

Isis worshiper, descendant of Cleopatra

Sergeant Shaun Flanagan

Police officer, Scotland Yard














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Cleopatra - The Mummy - A John Storm adventure with the Elizabeth Swann



The rights of Jameson Hunter and Cleaner Ocean Foundation to be identified as the author of this work has been asserted in accordance with section 77 and 78 of the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988. This website and the associated Cleopatra artwork is Copyright © 2023 Cleaner Ocean Foundation and Jameson Hunter. This is a work of fiction. Names and characters are the product of the authors' imaginations, and any resemblance to any person, living or deceased, is entirely coincidental.