Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Las Vegas Nevada
Current Game: Dungeonseige series
Excerpt Faerie II
Like the excerpt from book one, this has been edited for content to bring it down to a pg13 rating.
The situation: The friends are not the only ones who know of the Faerie. A secret project in the American government has been trying to use the gentle creature for decades. Using links to NSA computers, they had found a group of faerie traveling with a man, and they intend to seize them for use. But they hit some snags. One is a man that would rather forget his past. A man of violence that must make a fateful decision. And a fairy that had once been part of the horror these captives face. Not as one of them, but as a man that cuased it...
Faerie II Excerpt
The phone rang, and Dawn picked it up. "Lady Penelope speaking."
"Who?" The voice was a woman, suspicious.
"I am assisting Rob here," she replied. "May I ask who is calling?"
"I will get him." She stood, walking into the bedroom they shared. The mob had delivered exactly what he wanted including a carrying bag. The weapon, a Heckler Koch MP5 sub machine gun capable of being fired fully automatic, was before him already field stripped for cleaning. With the gun in the bag were a row of blocks of C4 plastic explosives along with detonators and radio triggers.
"Monica." She said, handing him the phone. He nodded, starting the reassemble the weapon as he slid the phone between shoulder and head.
"I actually expected you to say Yo, Rob. Since when are you Rambo?"
"I never told any of you that I was Rambo before."
"Rob, there must be some other way."
"Give me one," he snapped. "I can't leave them in enemy hands. As soon as I am ready, I'm going in."
Dawn took the phone. "That is, we are going in."
"Damn it Dawn."
"Lady Penelope." She corrected. "Dawn is dead and gone. She has quit her job, and is already enroute to parts unknown. Kimberly is among the Faerie, and from what I have been told, she will remain. No more discussion, Rob."
Rob glared at her. Then lifted the phone again. "It seems I have a Sancho Panza as well, Monica."
"To go with your Don Quixote complex." She sighed. "Then for heaven's sake no charging windmills. Be careful, both of you."
"That's my middle name."
"Yeah, right after 'not very'."
He chuckled, pocketing the phone.
Edelweiss Lupine and Thistle came in through the back window. "Rob, a vehicle has parked outside. Three men with guns are in it."
One instant he was the relaxed man preparing for his evening. The next he was crouched, the weapon aimed ahead of him.
"Duck and cover."
Dawn/Penelope reached over, racked the bolt of the Desert Eagle, and shook her head. "Together."
"Angels and ministers of grace defend us," he whispered. "Then set the gun down. I don't think they are going to bust in-" As he said that, there was a knock on the door.
"FBI! Open up!"
Penelope, for no trace of Dawn still existed set the hand cannon on the night stand. "Be ready."
"What the hell-"
"I am going to open the door. If it is some nice gentleman from the FBI, I will turn myself in while you go out the back. If it is not, I will hit the floor." She walked down the hall, stopping at the door. Rob traded out. The Desert Eagle had better penetration. She looked through the peephole then dropped rolling.
An instant later the lock blew inward and the door was kicked in. The first man through had a pump shotgun. Rob had already pulled the trigger before he he'd recognized him as the blonde from the casino. There was a flicker of movement to the right of the door, and he swung the barrel putting four rounds through the wall. Someone screamed then a hand with a pistol fell into view.
Rob stood, walking forward. There was still one man, and he had to find him. There was a shot behind him, and he spun.
Runningfox had decided to come in through the back door. From the sound of it, it was a good thing. The target was in front of him, and he aimed. One shot would-
Edelweiss saw the man lower his weapon to aim. She still envisioned the horror she had caused. The deaths that could be laid on her own doorstep. Most of those poor Faerie had not even lived long enough to give him their names. Nine dead that he knew of, how many of Robís friends had been murdered because of something she could have stopped six decades ago? There was only one way to expiate that sin, and only one way to save Robís life.
They were the same way.
"Nein!" a voice cried, and something hit the gun as he was finishing the squeeze. He was able to see a woman with wings pulling the barrel aside even as the squeeze finished. A tiny face, terrified yet determined, trying to change the course of death by putting her own fragile form in it's path. He had a shocked instant of seeing her face, her lips moving.
Then the gun went off. She had been pulling it aside, and she was in front of the bore when the bullet exploded out of it.
Imagine a sixteen inch battleship round going through a man.
The bottom part of her body fell, hitting the ground with a wet smack. The upper torso was still clinging to the barrel, and he knew she had been dead the instant he had fired. But her face was at peace. The hands loosened, and the rest of her, far less than half, hit the ground beside her legs. There were cries of pain, and two other Faerie landed beside the body. They looked at the dead, then at him, their eyes reproachful.
He was frozen in time. Her eyes still on her before she had let go. Had her lips formed words? Had she really said 'danken gott'? Thank God?
He heard someone approaching, and a meaty hand caught him, slamming him into the wall. Rob was screaming at him, but he didn't hear it. His eyes were on the pitiful remains of his last kill.
Rob threw down the weapon. An impersonal bullet at five paces wasn't good enough. Screaming incoherently he caught the older man, lifting and slamming him into the wall hard enough to shatter the window beside him. He wanted to rip his throat out with his teeth. He wanted to press his thumbs into the killer's eyes until they burst. He wanted to pound that face and head until it was bone fragments in a bag of skin. He wanted to use his knife and fillet the son of a bitch with it.
Only that staring horrified face stopped him.
Killing him now would have been a mercy.
Rob dropped him. "Satisfied?" he rasped.
Runningfox looked at him. There was a thump. The pistol Runningfox had still held in his hand dropped to the floor.
Rob didn't care that he had almost been killed, that he'd forgotten the first rule of combat 'never let you emotions control your actions'. The man in front of him slowly collapsed to the floor, crying. He reached out then when it was too far, crawled across the room. He picked up the torso and head of Edelweiss, and with a gentleness so unlike what he had done, held it to his face as he cried.
Rob grabbed the pistol, sticking it in the back of his pants. Lady Penelope had come running toward him, and was standing looking at the bottom half of Edelweiss. She turned, vomiting.
"Penelope, we don't have time for this," he said. She looked at him, a little wild-eyed, but she nodded, picking up the MP5. She copied him, sliding it into the back of her slacks, then picked up the bag with the explosive.
Rob picked the man up, shaking him until he finally had his attention. "If you want to explain this to the police, I'll leave you here. If you don't I suggest you get your head out of your butt. Move Soldier!"
Runningfox walked, first hesitantly, then more steadily. The apartment was in a large complex on the eastern fringe of the city. It had only been open for three months, but it was all ready filled. The few people home took one look and decided that this was not their problem.
The dawn light painted the streets in red and gold.
There are things we do in life that we don't believe ourselves capable of until after the fact. Soldiers face it every day in combat when they see what is undoubtedly another living being and still they pull the trigger. Men who have never cheated on their wives find it when they wake up and see some other face on the pillow beside them.
In most cases, they get over it. The soldier tells himself that he really didn't hit anyone. That someone else probably shot that man. I was drunk and she was cute.
But even then there are those things you can't get over.
In his sixty years, Runningfox had killed men at ranges from three feet to 500 meters. Not thought he had, knew he had. But this...
He had seen the face, felt the recoil; looked at the tattered remains. He was shaken to his very core. He had killed something beautiful that had never hurt anyone. He had done it, and he would have to live with that.
What had she been thinking of? What horror had she done been guilty of that only dying would expiate it?
He knew his horror. And he knew what would end his torment.
The woman drove, and he would have been impressed by her skill if he had been paying attention. The Tar- no, something was horribly wrong here and he was to blame, not the man Murdock had sent him to kill. Rob sat behind him. Runningfox didn't need to see the weapon in his hand hidden from public view.
"You know in seven months I have never been up this early," Lady Penelope said. "I am not sure I like it." Her eyes flicked to the rearview mirror. "I for one could use something strong to keep me going. There is a Starbuck's ahead. Would you like something, Rob?"
"Coffee. The largest you can get away with legally."
Runningfox looked up. "Yeah. The same."
"How do you take it?"
"Black with eight sugars," Rob said.
"Anything for you two?"
"Some hot chocolate please?" Thistle said.
"That sounds nice," Lupine said.
"Of course, dear."
Runningfox had forgotten about the Faerie. Now he realized that he had wanted to. To remember them would have meant remembering the other one...
The car pulled in, and Lady Penelope pocketed the keys. "Perhaps you two can talk without my influence. Play nice while I am gone, lads. We must plan something." She climbed out, striding into the shop.
"I killed her. God forgive me," Runningfox whispered.
"Maybe you should consider the others you helped kidnap," Rob snapped.
Runningfox's head came up. "Others?"
"Yeah. The bag your team snatched have five more Fairy, and two babies in it." He motioned toward the back. "Lupine escaped. That's how we know where they are."
"I will have his heart, Rob."
"He stuffed my sisters in a metal box with some kind of gas! He ordered you watched until his return when he would kill you! He is evil!"
"Save it until you die!" she screamed.
Rob watched him. "I know, you weren't told. You didn't know. What did Murdock say? That I was a terrorist with something nasty in the case?"
Runningfox nodded. "It made the rest of the instructions make sense."
"What were they?"
"Kill you, take the bag, be very careful handling it. Put it in a sealed container in the trunk," Runningfox repeated his orders.
"So you helped some lunatic steal my baby and my lover and intended to kill me too."
Runningfox looked up. "How do you know Murdock?"
"Edelweiss could have given you chapter and verse if you hadn't killed her," Rob snapped brutally. "Until about five years ago she was a scientist with your lunatic Murdock-"
"Professor Von Hagen," Runningfox said. "He disappeared right after we arrived. Murdock said he'd been reassigned."
"No. He was helping that ignorant mother brutalize Fairy from Germany to here for fifty years. You want a simple explanation? Fine. Let's just say some fanatic from the cold war saw them as the perfect weapon. Problem is, they don't want to be our perfect weapons. Murdock thinks they are just little animals, and you know what a scientist that doesn't care can do to an animal."
Runningfox looked in the back seat. The two girls were cuddling, still mourning their loss. The other Fairy looked at him, and he flinched at the hatred in that look.
"I can take you there."
"Edelweiss knew where it is. Lupine knows. All I need is some extra firepower. I don't have it, but I can't wait. While we're talking he might be dissecting them, using shock therapy to make them prove they can follow instructions."
"You said babies?"
"Two. Calla and Hope." Rob's hands clenched. "Hope is my daughter by Trillium, one of the Faerie he has captured. The man is messing with the only family I have, and you helped him!"
Runningfox turned. He had been right. The Desert Eagle was level with his crotch. If Rob pulled the trigger now he'd blow both thighbones to dust, and kill him. "May I call you Rob?" The man nodded sharply. "Rob, I swear if I had known what the bastard was doing, I would have taken the place down to the ground myself. Please believe that." He looked at the Faerie. "Ladies, if I survive, I will lay still and let you cut my heart out." He looked back at Rob. "Let me help. Please."
Rob glared at him. Then he set the safety, putting the gun away.
Runningfox motioned to his jacket. "May I?" At Rob's curt nod, he pulled out a cell phone. He hit the speed dial. "Lopez, Code Comstock immediate, I say again, Comstock immediate. Do not I repeat do not notify Murdock. Let him stew." He closed the phone. "Rob, I have reduced our enemies to just one. The code tells all of my men to pack it in and run like hell. Murdock won't know what's happening. There are seven rooms in the sealed complex. I can get us in, I can't guarantee getting us out. But I am going with you."
Rob nodded. Lady Penelope returned. She set the chocolate for the Faerie in the back holder, giving each of them his beverage. "I hope you have been playing nicely."
"He's in," Rob told her.
"Oh good. I didn't want to mess up a rental." She slid into the seat, taking her own cappuccino. "What have we decided?"
FROM ROB TO ALL STATIONS: 6-3-3, 2-21-1, 132-19- 4, 5-23-1, 6-21-1, 5-
23-1, 6-21-1, 11-30-9, 37-1-7, 4-12-1, 13-3-5, 4-12-1, 13-3-5, 4-1-2,
11-2-2,10-11-2, 8-6-4, 27-48-6, 6-11-10, 11-30-8,11-4-3, 7-5-2, 42-38-7
(For those of you who don't have the book):
ENEMY SOLDIER SUBDUED ONE OF OUR NEW FRIENDS DEAD. WITH US.
ONLY KING REMAINS.
ONE OF US WILL CONTACT YOU WHEN DONE.
The car drove down the gravel road. They stopped at the chain link/barbed wire, and Lady Penelope punched in the code Runningfox had already given her. They drove forward. There were no cars outside the bunker. She pulled up as instructed. Rob and Runningfox climbed out.
"If it hits the fan in the next few minutes, drive like hell east." Runningfox pointed in case she didn't know the direction. "The fence between Sigma 7 and eight is weakened intentionally. You might ruin the car, but you will be out of here."
"What about you?"
Runningfox and Rob shared a look. Rob answered the question. "If that happens, neither one of us is coming out of there alive."
"Well then I suggest both of you get out of there. I will wait until you have."
"You're crazy, Lady P," Rob said fondly. "Don't ride it into the ground." He cocked the Desert Eagle.
Runningfox took the Sig Saur he had been carrying, and cocked it. "If that didn't convince you, picture ten pounds of C4 blowing the complex to hell." He drew a line around the complex and fifty feet from it with his pointed finger encompassing the car and it's occupant. "You don't want to be here when that happens."
"You are both certifiable."
"And your point?" Rob took his gun, and stuck it in the small of his back again.
She sighed, driving the car far enough out of the area of assured destruction. Both Lupine and Thistle flew from the car. Lupine nestled herself against Runningfox's collar.
"I will still have your heart!" She hissed.
Rob nodded, raising his arms. Runningfox moved behind him, the gun in his hands. They approached the door, and Runningfox gave him the code to enter.
The door slid aside, and they entered. The inner door snapped open. Morgan looked up, and Runningfox raised his piece and fired, the bullet going into Morgan's head.
He ran to the main control, entering his code. The door opened. "Move!"
It had gone horribly wrong, and Murdock wasn't sure how. He had been interrogating the enemy plants when the door had opened. He triggered the security system.
Rob was moving through the door, but a push from behind had him diving for the floor even as there was a roar of munitions over his head. Runningfox fell, guts flying, body falling as he absorbed the claymore that had been set. On the edge of it, Rob felt several ball bearings rip through him. He knew he was badly wounded possibly dying, but he had a mission first.
He had been trained, and training saved him. The Desert Eagle came up, and Rob punched two rounds out. The first took Murdock in the chest. The second, driven by recoil, took the man between the eyes.
Runningfox was gasping his life out; the claymore had gutted him as efficiently as might be anticipated.
"Thistle!" Rob moaned. He was concentrated on the computer screen as she flew back toward the wounded man. As good as he might be at killing the enemy, Rob was at a loss. He dragged himself over.
He decided to call for help. He brought up a website where he could connect
ALL STATIONS, ALL STATIONS, THIS IS ROB. I NEED HELP! MUST DELETE TOTAL HARD DRIVE.
There was a pause. then;
CORN-SILK HERE. WHAT SYSTEM?
I HAVE NO IDEA. MUST DELETE TOTAL SYSTEM... E-MAIL ATTACHED TO NSA DATA BASE. OUR COMMUNICATIONS BEING RECORDED.
CORN-SILK HERE. ROB; I NEED TO KNOW WHAT TYPE OF SYSTEM. THEY ALL HAVE DIFFERENT WAYS OF DOING THIS. IS IT A LINUX, MAC OR IBM CLONE?
He looked at the case of the tower.
I THINK IT'S AN IBM. WAIT ONE.
He brought up a screen by clicking document icon.
USING MICROSOFT FOR WINDOWS
CORN-SILK HERE: OKAY. IT'S AN IBM CLONE. THAT MAKES IT EASIER THAN PULLING HARDWARE. REFORMAT ALL HARD DRIVES.
CORN-SILK HERE. GO FIRST TO MY COMPUTER. IF THERE ARE DRIVES THAT DO NOT HAVE DETACHABLE SOFTWARE MERELY RIGHT CLICK THE DRIVE AND HIT FORMAT. YOU CAN'T DO THE MAIN C DRIVE THAT WAY, BUT YOU CAN WITH THE OTHERS. WHEN IT ASKS, JUST SAY YES.
ONCE DONE WITH THEM, GO TO MSDOS. JUST CLICK THE START ICON, IT WILL ASK IF IT SHOULD RESTART IN MSDOS MODE. CLICK THAT. WHEN IT RESTARTS TYPE IN FORMAT C:/ WHEN IT ASKS, SAY YES. DOS CANNOT BE REMOVED, SO IT WILL AUTOMATICALLY EMPTY OUT THE DRIVE AND REFORMAT IT AS IF NEW.
WAIT ONE; IS THERE A RESTORE DISC?
He looked around, finally finding a compact disc marked Restore.
EVEN BETTER. AFTER REFORMATTING THE REST OF THE SYSTEM, USE THE RESTORE DISC. IT WILL AUTOMATICALLY RESET EVERYTHING AS IF NONE OF IT HAD EVER EXISTED.
Rob held a hand against the wound in his stomach, and patiently began typing in the instructions.
Runningfox was at peace. He had felt the impacts, knew he was dying, and was at peace. His last act before all hell had broken loose was to grab Lupine, holding her in front of his face. If the claymore hit that high, hopefully his skull would slow the shrapnel down enough. Then he had heard and felt that blast His legs felt as if they had been amputated and he could tell that he had been eviscerated. Above his face, he could see Lupine, heard her screaming at him. But it wasn't important. He felt a pain in his throat. Then again, and again.
Rob didn't know what to do. The person, Corn-silk gave directions, and he accepted it. The system busily hummed, deleting every file as instructed.
Picture your own consciousness. Picture a button that will delete every thought or memory that does not come from your genetic make-up.
Now picture pushing that button, knowing what will be lost, but not caring...
The computer lobotomized itself as Rob turned. His eyes caught at the horror behind the desk. Ten jars each with a sad little brutalized fairy body. He stared at them in horror at what was in them. Then his arm swept across, all of the jars smashing on the floor. He took the important part, which were the bodies, putting them in a separate empty jar together.
"Trillium!" he screamed, "Trillium!"
The testing had been boring actually. Murdock had come back at about dawn. He'd taken Blue belle first. Then a short while later, had come and taken Rose. Then he had returned and Trillium had been taken.
In each case, the old bastard had taken them in a clear plastic case into another room. Trillium, with an IQ around 120 had found she had to prove able to maneuver through a standard Skinner maze. From listening to the twerp reporting, she had been through the same maze that both Blue Belle and Rose had already been through. Not that the maze itself was hard. A child of perhaps ten would have figured it out.
Then had been the revised version of the same maze, adding altitude as well. Again, nothing a human child of ten would have considered overly complex. But Murdock seemed to think it was the Rosetta stone.
She had finished the latest series when the attack began. She had barely been locked back in the box stuffed in the bottom drawer when all hell broke loose.
Picture whatever war movie you might want to remember;
Now convert the sound to the 'sense-surround' used during the 70s for such movies as Earthquake and Midway...
Last; picture all of that sound compressed into a single room and within perhaps ten seconds. That is what combat on the personal level is like.
To a human it would have been loud and abrupt. To the Faerie it was like being stuck inside a kettledrum before the percussion set was played. Both she and Rose clutched their children to their bosoms as reverberations from hell assaulted young ears. But as you are protecting the child, your own ears are uncovered. Trillium mewled in agony as the sound blasted over her. She tried to hold the baby in a supportive lattice, but her own pain caused her arms to tighten, and Hope screamed in fear. In the din, she thought she heard Rob calling.
Trillium! He screamed, Trillium!
The bottom drawer was jammed, and he almost blew the lock off. But if they were in there... He threw out the drawer above it, but there was a solid steel panel between it and the drawer below. Growling he locked his hands on the offending drawer set his feet against the desk itself, and threw his whole body into it. He felt muscle straining, what might be a hernia giving, muscles tearing and still he pulled. There was a screech of tortured metal, then the drawer was in his lap. There was a plastic case there, and he popped the small opening open with the one hand that still worked.
For a horrified moment, Rob thought he was too late. Then a spiral of lights came up. Three lights, with two smaller ones. He felt his pain at one remove. He knew without looking that the desperate attempt to free them had ripped the tendons in both legs one arm and his abdomen, exacerbating the wounds he had taken. He might not be dying, but he had crippled himself quite efficiently. Even with modern surgery, he was bound for a wheelchair. Pain drove him toward unconsciousness.
"Rose!" Trillium shouted. Both she and Blue Belle landed, and Trillium felt her fangs stretch out as she injected her love.
Lady Penelope felt less like Mrs. Peel and more like every other science fiction heroine was she waited in the car. Dressed to the nines, and unable to actually help. All she needed was a twisted ankle. After about twenty minutes, lights suddenly flowed from one of the vents, and she watched them drop into the car. Two of the Faerie, from what she later heard the youngest began tapping out instructions. She had followed the instructions. walking into that hell, setting the charges where she had been bid, then ran back out. As she stepped over the coaming getting out, she slipped and damned if she didn't twist her ankle! She limped to the car and punched the gas. She was at the gate when one of the Faerie gave her the direction, and she hit the switch. Behind her, the ground shivered, bulging upward, then collapsed.