Castle Rock Compound, Colorado, Earth
Haley sat next to Camille in the dining hall. The wide, grey rock room was nearly empty. A few people were inside but they sat in small clusters, none of the clusters anywhere near each other.
Camille leaned in,“You can talk about it. It’s normal.”
Haley eyed her, pausing before sticking her fork into a piece of rare steak. “Everybody knows I’m worried. Talking about it more won’t make me feel much better, but they’ll get sick of hearing about it soon if they aren’t already. And besides, it hasn’t even been two weeks yet. Lee said it would be at least two weeks, so they aren’t even late.” Continue reading A Good Boy: Part 1
I flew past the hotel, a thirty-three-floor needle of mirrored glass that stood near a parking structure to its left and a rust colored 19th century building to its right—though a path that led to an old bridge stood between them.
I might be ready to disappear to an alternate world, but maybe I could do something.
The dinos swarmed down the wide sidewalk overlooking the river, but without the enthusiasm, I’d seen before. A few of them pointed at me and shrunk closer to the building. Continue reading A Day in The Life: Part 20
Distant sirens grew louder, and I decided that I ought to start paying attention to the world around me again. The sirens meant that the police were on their way to pick up Jillian, Hank, Latoya, and Andronicus.
Checking around the area, all four of them lay on the ground, none of them showing any sign of The Thing That Eats. To judge from what happened to Andronicus the first time, they might be out for quite a while.
He was a special case though as he’d been controlled for hundreds of years, but he could also regenerate. Maybe for people who’d been controlled for a short time, but couldn’t regenerate, it would even out? Continue reading Harvest: Part 17
“You’re a normal human—physically, at least. Mentally, no…” She shook her head again. “But that doesn’t matter. If I’m that far gone, I’m not going to be able to control what happens when I’m offered what I need to fix myself.
“When the Bloodlords created the Bloodmaiden to protect our land, they borrowed ideas from the Elders. They were a lot like vampires, but they were alive. Their hunger for blood lives on in the Bloodmaiden construct, but also in all the noble families of my world because we’re partially descended from them. Some people believe it’s why we can use magic.
“You can’t trust the Bloodmaiden construct if I’m dying. Find me an animal or let it happen.” She stared at me, waiting, I assumed, for my response. Continue reading Harvest: Part 16
Amy shoved the spear into its eye. It sunk into the corner, deeper than any of her other strikes.
Though I couldn’t see it, I felt the air thicken with its being. Flashes of memories of faces that other people had loved or hated passed through my mind, followed by moments of terror and a vision of The Thing’s teeth.
The Thing tried to pull away, but Amy stepped forward, pushing the spear in further. It reached out its hand, grabbing the spear, but it did that about the same time that I shoved my sword into its other eye, pushing it as deep as I could and willing the flames to burn hotter. Continue reading Harvest: Part 15
I took the sword in both hands, holding it ready in front of me.
As I’d come to my feet, sword in hand, The Thing That Eats jumped from the grass between the houses toward me. I jumped sideways, landing twenty feet to the side of where I’d been. The Thing That Eats landed a few feet past where I’d been standing. The street cracked under its feet and bits flew through the air.
It had been aiming for me, hoping to hit and then kill me while I was disoriented.
At least that was my guess. Given how hard it hit the street, it might have been hoping to kill me outright. Continue reading Harvest: Part 14
The Thing That Eats moved with all of Andronicus’ power to punch her again. In training with supers, you learn to recognize powerful punches, the ones that move with tons of force behind them.
The Thing’s punch had all of that. Its arm blurred in the dark, the whole of its body moving with it.
Amy knew it too—because somehow, even though physically she wasn’t in its league, she moved enough that the blow only grazed her lower chest.
The problem was, of course, that with tons of force behind your punch, it didn’t matter whether you hit a vital spot or not. Your punch was a hand grenade, turning anything it hit to jelly and anything next to it into slightly less jellylike broken stuff. Continue reading Harvest: Part 13
Far too conscious of the limited number of boombots I had left, I tried to think through my next steps. Amy and I stood roughly back to back with her facing Andronicus Thing. The rock stood to her right and my left.
Latoya lay on the ground in front of the rock. Jillian Thing and Hank Thing rushed toward us from my right and they probably weren’t going to respect my agreement with Amy that I handle them while she handled Andronicus Thing.
Worse, I realized that we’d screwed up tactically, possibly lethally. Continue reading Harvest: Part 12
Out of the corner of my eye, I watched The Thing That Eats in all of its bodies. None of them said anything as they stood by the rock, but they watched it.
I felt certain they had a reason, and said, “How do you want to handle it? Straight out attack or something softer?”
Lying with her armored back to the shingled roof, Amy glanced up toward the roof’s peak. “Do you have an idea?” Continue reading Harvest: Part 11
I pulled my head down decided that seeing it with my own eyes wasn’t worth the risk. I pulled up the spybots’ views of the scene, moving a few in for a better view.
Amy and Vaughn followed my example.
My comm made a clicking noise and I heard Haley’s voice. “We can see everything. Do you need any help? We might be able to send the jet.” Continue reading Harvest: Part 10