Cassie: Part 25

I muttered a few words that would have gotten a look from Mom if she’d been there, and leaned over the edge. The first wave of frog monsters hung halfway up the wall. They’d reeled in whatever line they’d used, and were hanging by their claws.

I hadn’t seen them holding a rope or anything. What were they using? A suspicion passed through my brain, and I watched as they opened their mouths. Their tongues shot out, sticking to the wall above them, and they yanked themselves upward, steadied by their hands and feet.

I knew what I’d have to do even though the idea made my stomach knot up.

Aiming the gun downward, I swept across the wall from the left to the right, the blazing, white beam cutting tongues in two, and cutting arms, legs, or any other body part that happened to be in front of the beam.

The lucky ones fell, wailing as they hit the ground, but crawling away.

I tried not to look at the other ones.

Since I stood near the corner, I took a few more steps to look down the front of the building. The frog monsters were two thirds of the way up, the sloped front and the balconies making it easier for them to climb.

I pointed the gun down at them, and hesitated, remembering how I punched through to the river through the basement wall. What if the brick supports in front did more than hold up the balconies and make the building look cool?

I asked the gun, Can you put the beam on a setting where it will take out the frog-things, but not hurt the brick?

OF COURSE.

Do it now.

Then I opened up on them. The beam didn’t cut through the brick. Almost surgical shots scattered across the front of the building, cutting through the creatures’ tongues or hands, guiding me to aim for the spot that would make them let go.

For them it must have seemed like a hail of white light fell from the sky.

They fell, some of them knocking others off on their way down.

I didn’t get to take a break after that.

Rod cursed as the sounds of webbed feet hit the roof, and I could hear them running in our direction. I stepped away from the side, turning toward the sounds.

While I’d been blasting away at the sides nearest me, they’d come up the other two.

I pointed the gun at them, not knowing if I could burn them all down before they reached this side of the roof. Part of me wondered if I should. I knew the Abominators’ weapons might have been made to corrupt people. I knew that people in the government wanted me to work for them like Dad had—not just as a member the Heroes League, but in the murky, behind the scenes missions that ultimately killed him.

This would be a step in that direction.

Yeah, part of me thought that.

The other part of me—most of me—didn’t hesitate. White light poured out of the gun, burning, searing, changing the creatures from living things capable of achieving happiness by (I don’t know) chasing fish in the deeps, to ash, and blackened, burnt bodies.

And I was okay with that for now.

Because it wasn’t as if I had options, you know? In a choice between letting innocent people get eaten, and possibly, maybe, getting corrupted by an alien weapon, I’d say that it was time for the frog-monsters to burn.

So when the League jet appeared, here’s what they found—the group of us waiting on the roof like we’d said, sitting in the one small section not covered with ash or dead bodies.

Frog monsters lay in piles on the ground, and on the sidewalk in front of the building, some of them still burning a little.

As for me, I’d been thinking, and I had some questions. Here’s one: who called the frogs in anyway? Creatures that got scared of light wouldn’t decide to invade the surface on their own. They had to have been duped, and whoever had done that was responsible for thousands of pointless deaths.

Definitely a name to add to my list of people I needed to find someday, somewhere under the guy who’d killed Dad.

13 thoughts on “Cassie: Part 25”

  1. I’ll give good odds that despite all current pointers to the contrary, when lee is invited to examine it, the gun turns out not to be an abominator weapon after all….

    …why?

    Because that’s just the kind of twist that Jim would add…..
    ….plus of course, not being able to blame the “evil” gun for the overkill iwould make Cassie feel all kinds of guilty.

  2. I must say that I have family that would find this scene in particular quite heartbreaking. Their from Louisiana, and the thought of such things from the water wreaking havoc on dry land, stopping evacuating cars, moving upward for people holed up in their houses, ready to tear off the roof to get to them. Then for a bright light to burn them all to death mercilessly, when they too might have just been pawns in someone else’s game.

    I’m sure if they were reading this, they’d ask “Why?”

    Why did she fry all those frogs…and not eat the legs?

  3. “I knew that people in the government wanted to work for them like Dad had—”

    I think this sentence is missing a “me”. Also, I absolutely love this story.

  4. Typos to your attention, good sir.

    “I didn’t seen [hadn’t seen/didn’t see?] them holding a rope or anything.”

    “I knew that people in the government wanted [me?] to work for them like Dad had—not just as a member the Heroes League, but in the murky, behind the scenes missions that ultimately killed him.”

  5. Pucker up, son, and call me paw,
    I’ma load up enough cat to make your grandmama d’aww,
    This rhyme’s just a cat-alyst to insure my victory,
    It’d take a major cat-aclysm to deny me, see.
    I’ll chop you into fancy feast,
    Feed you to Schrodinger’s beast,
    You want haz cheezburger?
    Stick to Gerber
    Even a cat-atonic Cat-amite has a better quip
    Now watch me go Tony Montana on some Kathmandu catnip.

    …seriously, what the fuck is wrong with me? They say someone dies every 30 seconds, and I think, somehow, what I just wrote is part of the reason why.

  6. Mycroft: That will be an interesting moment. It may not happen during this story, but it’ll happen.

    PG: With regards to the frog legs, I had a feeling you were heading that direction as soon as I saw the work Louisiana. No idea why.

    Daniel: No guarantee they’d be much like a normal frog in taste though.

    catastronaut: I’ve seen you in Worm’s comments. Thanks for the correction, and thanks for reading.

    Luke: Thanks again for the correction.

    Captain Mystic: Ditto.

    JN/PG/Hg: You’re hurting my brain.

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