The others broke into a slow jog. Osay watched them for a moment, then her head snapped back towards the opening. Her ears pricked, and her heart rate rose slightly. She knew where they were. There were ten--no, twelve of them coming down the alley from the direction she'd come. Eight more were running in from the other end of the alley. Perfect, twenty guys. This was more than she usually handled. Osay smiled slightly. It was a good thing she knew this part of town so well. This narrow alley was the only way to get to her apartment, at least without going a few miles out of the way. They'd have to go through her to get to the others. She bent to the side and slipped her hand into the back of her boot. Her fingers wrapped around the handle and pulled the vibroknife out of the boot. She straightened and pressed herself against the wall again, her knife at the ready. They were almost here. The girl tensed and silently counted as the distance closed. Three...two...one...
Osay's knife plunged into the heart of the first thug to come around the corner. She flicked on the knife. Hundreds of tiny vibrations ran up and down the blade, sending blood flying into Osay's face and onto her hair and shoulders. The girl yanked the knife out of the man's chest. She instinctively ducked, somehow avoiding the blaster bolt that flashed through the air where her head had been. Her knife flew from her hand, into the face of the Mirialan who had fired the shot. Osay darted back and to the side; she was on her feet in an instant. Her forearm flew up and blocked a man's forearm as his knife descended on her head. She pushed back, spinning under his arm. Her other hand went around his head. A sharp jerk was all it took to snap his neck like a twig. Osay whirled to meet the next two, both of them obviously junkies from their wild eyes and sallow faces. Her hand slammed into the right one's chest at just the right spot, and a few of his ribs cracked. The girl gave a cry of pain as the other junkie's fist hit her in the jaw. She allowed herself to stumble back out of the way of his other fist, and then Ashalle's knife sliced across his throat.
Osay was a whirl, her hands flying, causing necks to break, throats to crush, bones to shatter. She felt like she was moving without thought, feeling strength and power flow through her, making her feel as light as air. Her hand found its way to Ashalle's knife again, and it cut patterns through the air as her hand skillfully guided it to its target. Suddenly, Osay stopped in mid-motion, the knife in her hand dripping red. There was one left. He was behind her. His knife was slashing at her. She started to turn to defend herself, but it was too late. The razor-sharp blade cut her upper left arm to the bone, then it scraped up the bone two inches. Osay gave a blood-curdling scream as intense pain flooded through her, almost throwing her into shock. She mindlessly reversed her spin, keeping the knife from cutting more of her flesh from her. The girl went three hundred sixty degrees around, causing Ashalle's knife to slice all the way through his trachea.
Osay fell to her knees, and she numbly dropped the knife to the blood-stained ground. Osay, get control. Slow the bleeding. she told herself. Her shaking hands managed to rip a four-inch wide strip from the bottom of her shirt. Now, around the top of your arm. She twisted the strip into a rope, and her right hand got it around her arm and into a slip knot. Pull it tight, as tight as you can. Don't mind the pain. Osay screamed again as she yanked the end of the bandage as hard as she could, cutting the blood off from her arm. She somehow tied it off without loosening it, considerably slowing the blood flowing from her arm.
You have to get to your apartment, now. Tawnos can help you. Osay mumbled, "Have to get to Tawnos." Her hand groped on the ground until it found Ashalle's knife, then she stumbled to her feet. Numbly, her feet took one step after another, then another, and another after that.
Ten minutes later, Osay's clammy hand slammed Ashalle's knife into her apartment door, point-first. Her cheek pressed against the cold metal. She muttered, "8307." The door didn't budge. She repeated it, louder this time. "8307!" There was a click, and the door opened. Osay fell inside, covered with blood, cold sweat, and tears.
Chapter 12 of A Soul Adrift
: On the planet Felucia, a young apprentice of the Dark Side thinks back to the beginning of her training as she lies in wait for her prey...
All the Time
: After four years in the Unknown Regions, the Exile returns to the known galaxy to visit an old enemy.
: A master of the Dark Side finds himself about to lose the one thing he cares about--and he will do anything to stop her from endangering herself.