By Matt Rowson
You wake up with a start. One moment asleep, the next wide awake, your neck muscles as taut as guitar strings. Staring furiously into blackness, you listen.
After a few seconds you dare to relax. Immediately you feel the cold, and pull the bedclothes up around your shoulders. Another few seconds confirm the silence, and you roll over onto your side, drifting back towards sleep...
This time you're sure. Now there is a distant sound... roaring waves, beating drums and the bellowing of a gale all curled into one. Your mouth is suddenly dry, your tongue glued to its roof. Terror grips you, a fear that swarms around you, grabs you at the shoulders, and shakes you like nothing you've experienced before.
Your heart is beating with a fury that threatens to burst through your chest. You throw off the bedcovers and leap to your feet in an unrestrained panic. Desperate, you stumble around reaching for light switches, blundering around in search of salvation. Somebody, SOMEBODY HELP !
You know what is happening. You know there is little you can do. Most of all, you know that you are RIGHT to be terrified.
Because, Birmingham, the Hornets are coming.
Leading the attack will be Tommy Mooney, an awesome weapon of irresistible determination. Michel Ngonge, a sabre of lethal unpredictability. Nick Wright, a whirlwind that will kick dust up into your eyes and leave you blinded and spluttering.
Peter Kennedy, an assassin of cold precision. Micah Hyde, the evasive artist who will dazzle you whilst he picks your pocket. Richard Johnson, perhaps most overwhelming of all, at the same time a bludgeon, a rapier, a radar, a missile.
Nigel Gibbs, who seems to know your every move. Darren Bazeley, who will mercilessly slice into your wounded flanks. Steve Palmer, a staggering obstacle, all hearts will fail of foes who look upon him. Robert Page, the leader, calling the shots and arresting the rotation of the planet with his power. Alec Chamberlain. Contemptuously defiant. You know that nothing you could try will remotely perturb him.
And then, you spy the main weapon. The source of all this terror. The general, Graham Taylor, in charge of the master plan. Far, far more intimidating than any nasal whine or mind game ever could be. And behind him there is us. The foot soldiers. It doesn't matter how many of us there are, Birmingham, we will ALWAYS be louder than you.
You want some advice ? Start running. Keep running. We won't pursue you any further than Wolverhampton. I'd suggest you stay there.
It's far easier to face things that you know you can handle.