Breaking & Entering: Part 6

Not all of the Rook suits were the kind I’d fought back in Grand Lake. Most seemed to be stripped down. You wouldn’t want to be tapping on a keyboard with enough force to smash a tank.

You’d run through a lot of keyboards that way. I knew that from experience.

Anyway, the stripped down models seemed to have smaller guns under the forearms. Sub-machine guns, maybe?

That wouldn’t be a big threat to the Rocket suit unless they had special ammunition—which I couldn’t rule out.

Still, I wasn’t nearly as nervous of them as I was the guys in the heavier versions of Rook’s suit—one of which had to be Rook.

That was my guess anyhow. He was sitting in the middle of the room in front of the widest console—kind of like Captain Kirk only evil and wearing powered armor shaped like a big, black bird.

Admittedly, not a very close resemblance.

I took a step back in my head. What was the plan? Find Cassie, and get out. Taking on Rook and all the people in his control room singlehandedly wasn’t in that plan.

The last I’d heard from the gun, Cassie was in the labs. I’d told her I’d meet her there. Since she wasn’t with the Rook suits, the lab she was near had to be the next room over—assuming she wasn’t sneaking between them somehow.

The best thing I could do would be get out of here.

I started to run.

“Rocket,” Rook’s voice echoed through the place. “Don’t run off. We’ve got a lot to talk about—like how I’ve got a nuclear missile aimed at your jet.”

That stopped me.

I clicked on my palm to open communications with the jet except that my helmet readout showed “SIGNAL LOST.”

I wondered how he’d managed it. My roachbots had worked seconds ago. Could he be blocking signals only once they passed the building’s walls?

I hoped so.

I’d stopped near the doors. Rook held up a claw and waved me in.

Part of me wondered if I could just run, but I couldn’t put it past Rook to nuke them anyway. Rook probably didn’t realize where the jet’s shields came from. It might actually survive the hit. I didn’t know for sure because I hadn’t tested that, but spaceships could throw some serious energy around.

Unfortunately even if the jet would survive, I didn’t know how well Jaclyn and Izzy would take the radiation.

I didn’t have a choice.

Before I turned toward the doors I said, “Tell Captain Commando where we are.”

The gun sparkled, and the doors slid open in front of me.

I walked in.

Across the sea of monitors and blinking lights, people in Rook’s armor pointed their weapons at me. Two of the people in the heavier armor stayed on each side of me, but twenty feet ahead.

No one came within reach. Maybe they were overestimating my hand to hand combat effectiveness, but I’d take it. Grandpa’s reputation did me some good.

On the back wall of the room, a screen showed a map of the dome. Three-fourths of the outside ring showed blinking red dots, and even as I looked two more dots started blinking.

If Jaclyn and Izzy could keep that up, we’d have a chance of winning.

Rook held up his claw before I came into reach.

I stopped, standing in front of his console, the two soldiers in heavy armor on either side of him.

“You have to call them off!” He pointed up at the screen. His voice didn’t have any of the slightly off-kilter feel he’d had earlier. Now he sounded angry, and maybe scared.

I checked the suit’s communicator readouts. Jaclyn and Izzy’s comms barely showed a signal.

“Can’t,” I said. “You’ve insulated this place too well against radio.”

“Dammit!” He pressed one of the buttons in front of him.

Outside of the room, fans started blowing. Rook turned his head and screamed at a someone in one of the lighter suits of armor.

“We waited too long! If we’d have done it when I said, they’d never have gotten this far. Get back from your console!”

Rook lifted an arm, and fired. Bullets hit the console shattering the casing, and making sparks fly.

The guy in light armor backed away, tripping, and falling on his chair.

“Sorry! Sorry!” The man pushed himself up, and backed away, hands in the air.

I hoped that the gas’s release was as obvious to Jaclyn and Izzy as it was to me.

I didn’t have time to think about it though.

Rook turned back to me, and, “I’ve released the nerve gas. Now, tell the jet to back off, or I shoot off the missile!”

That was the moment it really hit me that he would kill Haley and everyone else in the jet if I didn’t do something. Plus, Jaclyn and Izzy might already be breathing in the gas.

“Uh… You’ve got to turn off whatever is blocking radio communications. I can’t do it otherwise.”

He raised his head to look me in the eye, stared, and said, “Right. Right. I barely think about it any more.”

His gaze traveled downward, stopping where I’d attached the Abominator gun’s holster to my belt.

“You’ve got the Abominator relic? That disappeared months ago. Take it off your belt, and drop the gun to the floor.”

“I’m not going to do that.” The words came out of my mouth before I had time to think.

“Then say goodbye to your friends.”

He raised his claw, and reached toward the screen.

18 thoughts on “Breaking & Entering: Part 6”

  1. “Could he blocking signals only once they passed the building’s walls?” – I believe should say “Could he be blocking signals…”

  2. Also just read Rain’s comment. I’m sure its a mistake…but thinking of computers lunching nukes makes me giggle.

  3. So, shooting the computer launches the nerve gas? I wonder if a Blue Screen of Death would also wipe out all personnel on-base? Rook needs a refresher course on Safety Engineering stat

  4. Technically, didn’t Rook make a grammatical mistake? The last noun mentioned before the “it” that’s supposed to be dropped on the floor is “the belt”. So wouldn’t that mean that he asked Nick to hold onto the gun and drop the belt on the floor?

  5. Belial, you always go with nukes. And Rods from God. And Rods from Gods with nukes attached. I half suspect you have modified your microwave to serve as an emergency nuke if you ever needed one quickly. From our debates on the proper use of banned weaponry and its applications towards metahumans (You: “Nuke em!” Me: “Gas em!”) I was lead to believe that’s how you mowed your lawn. Your favorite song is Para Bailar Tsar Bomba.

    And now that someone wants to go with nukes, you want antimatter. For you, the Big Bang isn’t history, it’s an aspiration. You don’t see me going “Well, he’s gonna let loose nerve gas…but I just don’t think he’s got enough gas. Look at that, you can’t even commit genocide with that puny amount.”

    For those just joining us, antimatter makes a nuclear bomb look like a firecracker. The way I heard it, it’d be about 100 times as much energy in an antimatter blast as a nuclear bomb. Drop one on Japan and you’d not only take them out of the war, you’d clear them off a map, melt Godzilla, and possibly sterilize King Kong. But I am prone to exageration from time to time.

  6. Correct me if I am wrong, but the jet isn’t that far away from the base. Wouldn’t nuking the jet wipe Rook out too? I’m not saying that he wouldn’t do it, just that it seems…unwise.

  7. @ Kaboom Discussion:

    C-fractional weaponry would likely be too tough to target against a nigh-invisible space jet cruising in circles around your base.

    Antimatter weaponry, while potentially scalable to a ‘tactical’ level (it takes an entire kilogram of antimatter to BOOM as big as the Tsar Nuclear Bomb), is usually just too unstable for field deployment. A half second power flicker in the magnetic bottle, and you get a severe case of premature detonation. And no, it doesn’t happen to everybody. Or at least, it only happens once, what with the vaporization and all. There’s also the issue of cost:

    Even if it were possible to convert energy directly into particle/antiparticle pairs without any loss, a large-scale power plant generating 2000 MWe would take 25 hours to produce just one gram of antimatter. Given the average price of electric power around $50 per megawatt hour, this puts a lower limit on the cost of antimatter at $2.5 million per gram. (source: And that one gram is only the equivelant of 3 ‘Hiroshimas’ at ~43 kilotons.

    On a tactical scale, a nuke’s only advantage is miniaturization. The Davy Crocket tactical nuke had an estimated blast yield of 10 to 20 tons, while the conventional MOAB has a yield of about 11 tons, without any fallout to make you glow in the dark. Granted, the difference in deployable size of these weapons is pretty big; one’s the size of your head, the other’s as long as a bus.

    So, with all of that in mind, Nukes are kinda the way to go, if you want a big boom in an easily deployable package that won’t blow up in your face if somebody sneezes on it (or even tosses a grenade at it). As long as you don’t care about the fallout.

  8. on the whole topic of weaponry:
    my favourite science fiction weapon comes from a book called Killing Time wherein people use the internet and other information age technology in order to perpetrate historical hoaxes (the fifth gospel) as they are going around doing this and causing global chaos they also have a weapon that is amazing called the rail gun.
    it basically works on the principle of supercharged electro magnetics. if you push something at a high enough velocity you can vaporize the sucker. electromagnets apparently have that velocity as it is one of the strongest force sin the universe.
    anyways read the book it poses some tough questions and has some excellent characters. the ending is also quite mysterious.

  9. Rail guns are close to not counting as sci fi weaponry unless you’re talking sized for an individual to use. Otherwise, we are pretty hard at work on the technology and can do it, just not in ways most useful for warfare yet.

    (I would like to know what is up with the flame there. Fact, or friction?)

    Much like how we’ve got working power exoskeletons, except we still have power problems. If only we had an arc reactor…

    Hulc, smash.

    I think they’re aiming a little low to just enhance soldiers’ endurance in the field. I favor adding enough armor to bulletproof the soldier along with a couple of systems to handle temperature. Tank armor and weaponry, but soldier-sized.

    One of my favorite sci-fi weapons was the Fallout 3: The Pitt add-on weapon called The Auto Axe (See? I DO care about fallout). Made using parts from old cars, it’s like a giant circular saw, if that circular saw was made of what appeared to be three rapidly rotating axe heads. I especially like the name of one of the unique special versions, Man Opener. Thought up a character based on that too.

    Come to think of it, just the other day I saw another neat “weapon” that could be useful. It won an Ig Nobel prize. Soundjammer or Speech Jammer or something. Handheld directional microphone and speaker system. Point it at someone, pull the trigger, and it will copy and then repeat back to the person what they say, but a few milliseconds later so that it screws them up with an echo. Can really throw a person off if they need to say something. Imagine if you could mess with an enemies communications system and give them a permanent echo.

    Another idea for a sci fi weapon is a cloned T-rex with armor attached to it and a laser attached to its frickin’ head.

    Now, for a potential doomsday weapon a supervillain could make use of, I’m thinking of repurposing an idea this one think tank had to solve global climate change. See, they wanted to build a setup that would basically stretch a giant hose high into the atmosphere so they could then pump in this one chemical that would help to block sunlight. Might have been some sort of sulfide or something, since they got the idea from a volcano that erupted once and threw enough dirt, dust, and other stuff into the atmosphere that they didn’t really have a summer that year.

    It’d probably be pretty cheap to figure up something with balloons, and could be put in place anywhere in the world. Just keep pumping, and keep cooling the planet. I need an ice pun. Someone, bring me Arnold Schwarzenegger!

    Also, mystic, I’m a bit curious now about what they’d mean by a fifth gospel. There’s a lot more than 5, but only 4 were put into the bible and treated as canon. Some of them we know of because they were referred to in other works but have been lost to time, like the Q document.

    One last note, I would hope Belial would pick up that I was trying to be humorous up there.

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