She pushed the button.
All the voices disappeared into static along with the displays in the helmet and every light in the armor. As of that moment, she was alone in front of the exit to HQ, and not standing either.
She didn’t know what the suit did to help her stay balanced, but whatever it was, it had to be electrical because moments after the lights faded she fell over backwards.
Taking stock of the situation, she stared upward. Stars peeked through the leaves and branches, visible in the dusk.
Continue reading The Battle of Grand Lake: Part 16
“Grandpa,” Chris said, “your pacemaker?”
Kayla could imagine Cannon shaking his head as he replied. “Between the distance and my armor, the pacemaker should be fine.”
“No,” Chris said, “this doesn’t sound like a good idea. I can take it in, and get out. I don’t have any missiles left and low on power, so I’m not going to get into fights. I’ll run.”
C talked over everyone. “Good so far, but I think we’re going to need everybody we’ve got left. I’d say send in the ship, both Man-machines, get their attention, and place the device. It doesn’t matter which of you does it. Get everyone in the jet, and then set the device off. The jet will survive that, right?”
Not waiting for anyone else, Cannon said, “It will. I tried hitting it with the anti-electronics effect back in the 70’s. The shields absorbed it. I’m not even sure they knew they were hit.” Continue reading The Battle of Grand Lake: Part 15
Cannon’s voice was a little distorted as it came through the speakers. “Give me a second. I think I’m passing some rock.”
He paused. “Are you all still there?”
Almost everyone said, “Yes.”
“It shouldn’t be hard now that you’re here,” Cannon said.
Kayla guessed he meant C.
Continue reading The Battle of Grand Lake: Part 14
“Where?” Haley asked. She wasn’t whispering.
“Above the forest. Right in the middle. It’s kind of close to the forest entrance to HQ.”
Haley’s eyes dipped toward the instrument panel. “The AI sees it, and it thinks it’s going to move…”
On the screen, the League jet exited the water, covered in panes of darkness, aiming toward the forest. The white beam, painfully bright even on the screen, aimed off to the side of where HQ’s scanner had identified it as an anomaly.
Above the forest, a silvery shape flickered, resolving into the aliens rectangular landing craft with a long burn down the craft’s side, and a blackened hole three quarters from the back. Continue reading The Battle of Grand Lake: Part 9
I’d noticed clouds forming since the fight started, and as I was about to press Theo on exactly how bad he felt, lightning erupted in front of the building.
Travis had told the glass cannons (mobile artillery, if you wanted to be formal) to help us, and now they were. I’d have taken help earlier, but Daniel was in the group, and he’d probably been responsible for the timing. That meant that this was probably the best possible moment, whatever I might think.
Thanks to my observation bots, I had three different perspectives available. All of them showed essentially the same scene.
As our group dived behind the old factory to get out of the machine race soldiers’ line of fire, the remaining robots split into two groups, some of them heading for the building that we’d started at, and the rest spreading out as they aimed for our building. No matter what direction we turned toward we’d be in some robot’s sights.
At least that’s the way it would have gone. Continue reading Stardock: Part 15
Larry thought about it for a second, and then opened the door.
Cannon was almost, but not quite his height, and less muscular. To judge from the tightness of his face, he also wasn’t happy. Larry held the door open, “Come on in, man.”
Cannon started to open his mouth, stopped and then said, “My suit was the last, and I mean the last thing I expected to see here today.”
He stepped around Larry, and started walking toward the workshop.
Larry put his hand on Cannon’s shoulder, and stepped in front of him. “Wait a second. What are you doing?”
“It’s my property in there. My design. My ideas. I’m not leaving them with you.”
Larry stared down at him, and didn’t let go of the man’s shoulder. “I don’t want to hurt an old guy, but if you try to take the suit, I’m going to deck you.”
Continue reading Enter the Larry: Part 11
After a little hesitation, they left me alone with him. I stood there, waiting as they shut the door, smelling concrete and disinfectant.
“Funny to see girls in the League. Never saw women as vigilantes back in my day except for Ghostwoman. She was goddamn scary — phased her pistol through my armor and nearly into my head. Stopped me a couple times.”
“Did you really think she’d kill you?”
Continue reading Rivalry: Part 7
“You’re going to have to talk to a judge if you want to get out.” Jaclyn stood opposite Chris’ grandfather. “We don’t have any power over that.”
Cannon didn’t seemed fazed by her response. “The old League was in bed with the FBI. You’re telling me you aren’t? Besides, I’m not expecting you to do it directly. I’ll tell you what you want to know about the ball, and after that you’ll call the FBI and I’ll tell them something they want to know.”
“Not while the Mystic’s in the room. Get him out and we’ll talk.”
Continue reading Rivalry: Part 6
By the time we left Lee’s, everybody wanted in on it. Not everybody went. Nine people would have been overkill. Not to mention that we might not all fit in the room.
Prison cells weren’t known for their spaciousness.
In the end, only five of us got in the jet — Jaclyn, Cassie, Daniel, Haley, and I.
Continue reading Rivalry: Part 5
Unfortunately, if he didn’t do anything about it, who would? No one, unless Romy found the guys soon.
He could just wait, but who knew when Romy would be back. He could try to talk some sense into the kid, but it hadn’t worked so far. At this point, Joe figured the best thing he could do would be damaging the kid’s suit enough that he couldn’t fight.
Down below, Man-machine raised his gun arm and began to fire. None of the shots hit, but Joe cursed himself and started moving, thinking how much of an idiot he had to be to hover when his opponent had high powered weaponry.
Continue reading 1953: Part 8