As ideas went, it was incredibly wrong. There were some that might say it was so wrong that it was right, but on a gut level, knowing what I did about my armor, his armor, and Johnny Destruction’s power, I would never have done the same except in a desperate situation where it was the only way to protect someone I cared about.
In short, the exact situation Travis was in. Continue reading Sudden Changes: Part 12
Izzy hit the dome fist first, obviously expecting it to work like a force field and shatter with the strength of her blow plus her momentum. It didn’t. Through my HUD, I saw the spot where she hit give but turn into a kind of tunnel through the dome, adjusting her course to slide her out the side before she had time to adjust.
Not anyone could have done that. Gish either had Daniel’s prescience or practiced adjusting his shield a lot.
At the same time that Izzy had tried punching the dome, I’d tried my own experiment with punching it. As I did, I saw through my HUD that rather than moving out of the way of my punch, the shield darkened around my hand, becoming denser and holding it in place. I hadn’t been hovering as I did it either. Continue reading Sudden Changes: Part 11
The first part wasn’t hard to guess. They’d gotten their parents on the jet and that’s where it began to go wrong. The Cabal soldier that Jaclyn had been chasing made it to the jet and knowing that it was there, tried to destroy it even though it was cloaked.
The soldier had run at the jet and punched, happening to hit a spot that had thinned so that sensors could work. The Cabal soldier’s fist made it all the way through, slowed by the shield, and dented the hull. It didn’t take much to fix it later and didn’t affect the jet’s structural integrity, but the fact that it made it through at all was scary. Continue reading Sudden Changes: Part 10
Upon landing, the Cabal soldiers were met with the jet’s anti-personnel lasers, spraying laser beams everywhere with uncanny accuracy, hitting all of the Cabal soldiers.
The jet’s anti-personnel weapons hadn’t been designed with the Cabal in mind. They’d been designed more to slow and discourage than to kill. They could kill, but not Cabal soldiers.
On the other hand, they were still lasers, however thin they might be, and in this case, they were being operated by Hal, our AI, whose primary purpose had once been to model space battles. Essentially, he’d been created to assist aliens in how to most efficiently kill each other, and long before this battle, I’d given him permission to listen to the rest of the team and help them as effectively as he knew how. Continue reading Sudden Changes: Part 9
I thought back, I’m not sure if that makes me proud or not. Either way, I’m sure they’ll factor it in now.
I felt a shot of nervousness from Daniel’s end, Can’t argue with that. Things are about to get dicey.
Maybe the conversation would have continued longer, but he wasn’t wrong about that. Two True behind the nearest houses popped out to fire at me. Unsure if Rook had developed killbots of his own, I shot sideways, weaving to make their chances to hit worse. Continue reading Sudden Changes: Part 8
I looked toward where the map showed me they had to be, “I’m fine. I’m looking for where I can best help.”
I couldn’t see them. The subdivision ended in an unused factory and a forest. Haley had told me that the area had been rezoned for residential and that the factory would be torn down—which was interesting since it didn’t look more than 20 years old to me. Made of cinder blocks painted white and large, tinted windows next to a parking lot, it might have passed for a mall. Continue reading Sudden Changes: Part 6
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
It hadn’t changed at all from how I’d left things. Haley was still talking to her mom. The Cabal soldier was still standing on the sidewalk in front of her house. Other people from our team were standing near us—Marcus, Tara, Julie, Katuk, and Kals.
Jaclyn’s camera still showed the burning house, “Hey,” she said, “should Blue and I head over to the house? I don’t like the looks of having a Cabal soldier there just waiting.”
From above Jaclyn, Izzy said, “I don’t either.” Continue reading Misdirection: Part 2
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
Standing next to Katuk and Kals, Tara spoke in the flatter voice I associated with her using her ability to create patterns from minimal data, “Knowing that they’re working for the Nine, they might be attempting to separate us and then attack your parents or us while we’re separated.”
“Is that likely,” I asked.
Tara tilted her head, but then said, “I don’t have enough to go on.”
“Chances of something bad happening just ticked up,” Daniel said. Continue reading Friends & Family: Part 8