“We’re ready,” Cassie said.
Given what she’d just done, I couldn’t argue with her. As for myself, I charged up my laser and activated the remaining killbots and boombots. Back when we’d first fought the Cabal, I’d been relieved that we hadn’t had to kill them. Part of me wished I were that version of myself now, but the more experienced version of me knew that even before the Dominators had turned them into the Nine’s servants, they were willing to kill all of us.
Tara’s name flashed in my HUD as she spoke, “The True will get suspicious something’s about to happen now if they haven’t already.” Continue reading Sudden Changes: Part 7 →
I didn’t realize that even as I felt optimistic, the other shoe had already dropped. The tree in the front yard had started on fire and the mulch and one of the bushes in front of their house had started with it.
Haley started talking to her mother over the comm again, “You need to get out, but don’t exit where they can see you. Go over to the neighbors. We’ll figure out a way to get you out of there… How? The police are coming. How do I know? Mom. You don’t have time for this. Get Dad and get out. And be careful, okay? I love you too.” Continue reading Misdirection: Part 3 →
I was about to point him out to Haley, but I didn’t need to. She and Travis had already noticed and had looked away from the screen to look at each other.
Haley’s fists clenched and I didn’t doubt that she was restraining herself from changing form, “We should go. Mom’s at home—“
Travis shook his head, “I’ll go. You’re running things here.”
Raising an eyebrow, Haley said, “No. I don’t run—“
“I’ll go,” Daniel said. “You’ve got a better chance if I do.”
“I’m coming too,” Cassie said, hand on her bluish-green gun. “Those guys go down hard.” Continue reading Friends & Family: Part 10 →
Soon after that, we all went back to base. After asking Daniel, I stripped out of the full Rocket suit and showered. Haley had assured me that it was a necessity. I put on a real pair of jeans and a t-shirt because she’d also assured me that my nanotech-produced clothing also needed washing.
Daniel had assured me that the chance of anything happening in the next hour or two was extremely unlikely. Continue reading Friends & Family: Part 4 →
I looked between Daniel and Tara and then said, “I guess I have to go then. I was thinking I’d want to reload.”
Daniel shook his head, “I don’t think it will matter.”
Tara looked up from her chair at me, “I know I missed half of that conversation, but you know Daniel’s guesses are good.” Continue reading Friends & Family: Part 2 →
I found myself remembering back to when we’d faced Ray and the Cabal and Ray’s method of terrorizing his targets—killing their families first, getting closer and closer, and then killing the target. From the way Haley’s face tightened, I guessed that she was remembering the same. Back then, we’d been able to rely on the FBI to guard our families. Knowing that the Nine likely had an ear there, we’d have to do it ourselves.
I said, “Can you move more bots out? We need to cast a wider surveillance net around our families, but I think we might want to do the same around close friends.” Continue reading Friends & Family: Part 1 →
Daniel lowered his head, nodding, “I get it, but I felt like it wasn’t fair to hide that I knew you would be in more danger when I knew that it would benefit me.”
Uncle Steve let out a breath, “I get it. I appreciate your honesty and your willingness to let me decide for myself. I don’t think I have much of a choice though. I can’t survive at the expense of my sister, any of your parents who were my childhood friends, or you kids.”
I wanted to say the same in return, but in my case telling him to take the safest route might theoretically kill everyone else I cared about. Continue reading Relative Uncertainty: Part 9 →
“Huh,” I considered that. “It seems as if whoever’s sending people after Uncle Steve might be using it to terrorize us? Because there’s no need to bother all the rest of you if they want Uncle Steve. They only need to go after my mom and dad—though I suppose going after everyone else’s might be insurance.”
Daniel nodded, “That’s what I was thinking, but there’s a wrinkle to it. I think they knew enough to target our families, but I don’t think they know why.”
“Magnus,” Tara’s face became expressionless. “He knows who you are. He’s made no effort to share it, but he has a reason to keep you distracted—the tablets Cassie translated.” Continue reading Relative Uncertainty: Part 8 →
“That’s what we’ve been worrying about for the last few weeks. They really could be. They’ve had years to get into place. We don’t know where. We can’t trust our government contacts too far and even outside, any organization could have a silent observer from the Nine or the Dominators.”
I stopped, unsure of how far to go. For all I knew, Sean might unwillingly be one of the Nine’s brainwashed pawns. Continue reading Relative Uncertainty: Part 7 →
Vaughn frowned, “What about the other engineers? Should we warn them? They warned Steve. I know they’re not good people, but should we let all the other ones die? Maybe we have to go after the Nine’s people first?”
I felt my jaw drop, “Yeah. I was just thinking about keeping Uncle Steve safe. We ought to do something.”
Uncle Steve shook his head, “That’s going to be hard if not impossible. I don’t go by Steve Vander Sloot on my government jobs. I use different names every time and so do the rest of them—the ones that work for supervillains with any regularity.”
I thought about that, “How do you get jobs if no one knows each other’s name?” Continue reading Relative Uncertainty: Part 5 →