Saturday, July 7, 2012

The Pallbearer: Bad Blood Part 2

On The Rise

You never expect to see those you bury ambling around again later. You especially don't expect to see them slowly eating their secretary, waiting for you to get wasted by a shotgun blast to the head. I suppose it was my own damn fault for putting him in the ground still breathing.

He had tried to cut my throat, like he had cut my parents', and consume every bit of life I had in me. Papa was a bitch that way. I remembered little of my real parents. They had died when I was six, and for four years, my Papa had watched over me. It turns out he was just fattening me up for sacrifice. Clean the soul for a couple years with meditation and a little bit of religion, and you've got yourself a tasty snack. Fucker.

I had a much larger problem than him right now though. I was staring down the barrel of my shotgun at a creepy little bugger that my eyes couldn't focus on.

"That's it. Just lay there. Lay there and stop looking! I hate it when people see me. You can't see me can you? Can you?"

"Nope. Can't see a thing. I'm legally blind you little toad."

Blank kicked me in the side of the head for that and Papa started chuckling. He was onto his secretary's lips, dangling them into his mouth like a kid eating licorice. I grabbed Blank's ankle and flipped him over. The shotgun went off and buried a slug in the elevator controls. I lunged for the space where Blank was, but he was too fast. I hit the ground hard and was clubbed in the side with the shotgun. He was fast, too goddamned fast if you asked me.

St. George had just finished blowing the Howler Tanks to hell and the rat was coming out the front doors. Several troop transport trucks wheeled in through the wide open hole where the gates had been. No one was firing. Not yet.

I didn't have time to be thinking both places at once. Blank was lunging for me as Mammon started making copies of himself from the shadows.

Enough of this. I planted my feet into Blank's chest and tossed him against the elevator doors. He hit them hard and I stood up, shaking myself off.

"I'm sorry to disappoint, but this isn't really a fair fight."

My grandfather laughed.

"Since when has it being fair stopped you from fighting it anyway?"

"I don't me for me. I mean for you."

My Brute manually cleared the breach on his rifle and dropped in a new yellow shell. St. George roared and the shell burst forth. It missed Mammon's head by the merest half-inch. The rat's mouth started to open to deliver a smart-assed remark before he realized he wasn't the target. The shell rammed itself through the steel doors of the elevator shaft, through the other side of the shaft, and embedded itself in the generator operating the elevators. West Worthington had cut corners on their headquarters here in the junkyard of Jeng. No ultra-safe locking hydraulics here, just a plain old electrical generator and a bunch of cables. I hit the button in my pocket and the shell exploded, rocking the building. You could hear the elevators falling and people screaming. For many of them, it'd be terminal velocity. They be half-buried when they hit.

It'd cut down on the time it'd take to bury them.

The troop transports dropped their armored hatches. No West Worthington support forces sauntered out. Instead, there came a stream of orphan machines. Some slithered, some ran, many pressed forward on treads. They wielded buzzsaws, machine guns, rifles, and lead pipes. They were as motley a crew as I had ever worked with, but they numbered in the dozens. I heard Papa gasp and knew he had just seen the surveillance vids showing the hundreds of robotic warriors streaming out of the junkyard for our building.

"By the way, Captain Angel is dead."

I stepped forward and grabbed Blank by the throat. He was just starting to stir from his slumped position by the elevator. I pulled open the slightly ajar door with my free hand and held Blank over the empty elevator shaft.

"Looks like he is too."

I let go and turned to face my grandfather. He looked like he was in his sixties. He had to be at least ninety. He was shrugging off his button-up shirt. He was still lean and muscular, a chiseled statue. It didn't hurt that he had time eat all the good bits off of his secretary by this point.

"You'll have to tell me sometime how you killed my first parents and made it look like an accident."

"You really want to know?"


"I'll tell you that, if you tell me how you got the Errata to do your bidding. We've been trying to destroy the lot of them for months."

"Done. You start first. And make it snappy. You don't have long."



The Errata were engaging Mammon's copies and tearing them to pieces. It was all the Sleeper could do to keep with making enough to shield himself from St. George's roars. Papa just flexed and his fingernails grew into claws.

"Well, for starters, I'm not your grandfather. But those were your real parents."

I rolled my eyes as I hefted my shotgun, baseball bat style and charged for the old man.

"Doesn't matter. I was gonna finish what I started twenty years ago regardless...

Just means I get to stop calling you Papa before I do it."

No comments:

Post a Comment