Explosions and mayhem! Yummy.

Who: Ingen Karpov
Where: Marketplace
When: After the crew begin getting recaptured
Ingen Karpov was doing a great job of fighting back the enemy.
Although it was a tiring job. He paused to reload his Winchester when
they came, the dreaded elite guard. Trained to protect and do the
bidding of the Apophallationmaster himself. These were not the usual
inept soldiers.
Climbing to the highest positions possible in the crowd, they trained
their extremely accurate weapons on the tastiest looking of the
humans. They fired small darts of technology, the same used by the
floating robots on the Blue Dwarf. Once the darts made contact with
human skin they send a wireless message to the central Mollopod
transportation device which dematerialised the selected human from the
marketplace before they could remove the dart.
<end snip>
Ingen had just discovered a delightful fact about the Mollopods. They
were soft and squishy, and if he swung his Winchester hard enough, he
could club them THROUGH the head!
He took a moment to admire his work as he decapitated a Mollopod for
the third time. It only took this moment of distraction, though, and
suddenly he was jerked to the side with the weight of what felt like
three people, but was most certainly a lot more slimy. Grim horror
swept over Ingen for a moment - but only a moment. Just as soon as he
had been tackled, something whizzed past his ear and the weight
previously tackling him to the ground simply disappeared, leaving him
to fall to the ground more harmlessly. Someone had saved him!
But as he pried himself off a goopy corpse he saw over his shoulder
who had probably "saved" him: another Mollopod, who was now aiming his
gun at Ingen again. He felt quite thankful for the Mollopod who'd
gotten him out of trouble, but he didn't have much time to deal with
that feeling. He feebly threw himself to one side, just in time to see
a dart land in the corpse he'd been lying on. It disappeared with a
small flash. Obliteration? Teleportation? Either way, Ingen was fairly
certain he wouldn't be very happy if he was hit one of those darts, so
he scrambled to his feet and barged out into the slimy crowd.
The first ten or so Mollopods were caught too off-guard to put up any
resistance to his movement, and the ones who did try to stop him
quickly fell limp with a new hole in their head. Soon, it seemed, they
were catching on to the fact someone was hurtling through their
masses: Ingen met steadily more and more resistance from the crowd,
more hands barring him and tugging at him, and was glad the slime
coating their bodies made it hard for them to grip him.
It took a moment to sink in, but Ingen realised some of them were
carrying long, bladed weapons shaped similar to tridents. He grinned:
he'd found an easier way through the crowd than brute shoving and
clubbing, and his Winchester needed reloading which he didn't have
time for. He pushed toward the closest one he could find, standing
high above all heads, and snatched it out of the hands of its owner.
Before the disarmed Mollopod had time to react, his own blade was
thrust through him and Ingen began to charge again, the crowd folding
away before him and his bladed weapon. Anybody who got in his path was
sliced through the waist, and Ingen felt like a fish swimming through
a very gentle current. He poked his head up above the crowd now that
he had concentration to spare on his surroundings, found a building
nearby and headed toward it.
He sliced his last Mollopod in half as he rammed his polearm through
it and into the door, and, keeping his momentum, thrust his shoulder
against it to find - partially to his dismay - it was unlocked and
already ajar. He fell through it and hit the ground hard, swearing
loudly, and leapt up as quickly as possible, which he felt sure
wouldn't be fast enough.
But no Mollopod grabbed Ingen. In fact, as he turned around, no
Mollopod had even come through the door, and he could see why. There
was a clear line of now torsoless Mollopod tails, or whatever they
called what they squelched along with, clearly showing the path he'd
travelled to get to the door. His last victim was still squirming,
eyes bulging, against the door. None of the goggle-eyed crowd seemed
very eager to test their mettle against him. He was glad, because he
would be rightly stuffed if they were; his gun empty and his previous
weapon jammed in the door.
Thanking his lucky stars, every God he could immediately recall, and
anything else he could think of that was capable of making miracles
happen, he kicked the door shut hard and took a moment to observe his
surroundings. There was a stairwell in the corner of the room with
sunlight shining down from it, and he started climbing it immediately.
Any other part of this house would lead him somewhere useless: either
into a room he'd be cornered in or back into the throng of Mollopods.
He emerged on the opened-out roof of the building, and stayed low. He
didn't want to be noticed. The roof was flat and rectangular with a
tall, solid balustrade around its edges and a table and chairs a few
paces away from the stairs, all glowing faintly orange in the
sunlight. He shoved the table down the stairs, and then threw the
chairs down as well with considerably greater ease, to make it harder
for anyone to follow him up here. But for now, at least, it seemed
nobody was trying to do that. He sat down against the balustrade and
began to reload his Winchester from the bullets on his bandoleer,
listening intently at all the strange sounds around.
One, however, was strangest. At first, Ingen thought it was an
explosion, but as it continued it turned out it was the roar of a
spaceship engine. It seemed to be getting louder, and Ingen jumped and
grabbed his ears as it roared directly overhead from behind him. It
was very low: he could feel the heat of its engine, and swore further
as he held his ears and watched it fly off into the distance. He kept
his ears held tight as more followed, easily hundreds more, all from
behind him: and as he looked around the sky, he could see more
launching from other locations far, far off into the distance. The
noise was deafening.
When Ingen uncovered his ears again, it was to hear a loud voice
booming over the crowd. An inhuman voice, but it spoke English. He
listened intently.
"-- up, Humans. Give up. It is hopeless. We have located your planet.
Even if we are unable to get our hands on you, we will capture your
entire planet and feast. Half of our entire fleet has already
launched, and the second half won't be long following. If you
surrender to us, you might at least not be eaten. You'll make good
slaves, and we need some more of those. But then again, no promises."
The voice cracked into chilling laughter that sounded like the scrape
of metal on rock, and then the sound ended. Ingen found himself
considering surrender for a brief second, then spat on the ground out
of self-disgust. He climbed to his knees, still holding his
Winchester, and peeked up over the balustrade in the direction the
ship had come from. His eyes were met with a surprise.
Ingen was faced with, only perhaps a hundred metres away from the back
of the house he was occupying, a metallic building which was easily
five or six stories tall. Through its massive doors, which were opened
up to reveal a single great room which easily covered all but one of
those stories, he could see massive silos covered in signs that showed
crossed-out flames.
Dozens of hoses snaked out of its doors and into a massive
concrete-floored space lined with neat rows of spaceships, each one
boasting a considerable variety of weapons. He didn't even recognise
some of them, but he didn't doubt that they were all did the same
thing. Here and there, spaceships were launching, one every ten
seconds or as he studied the location. Nearby the building, a few
ships towered over the rest, almost as large as the mothership he'd
arrived in. He'd need to hurry if he didn't want those to launch.
His gaze fell to the concreted clearing between him and the great
building before him. It was fenced off from the crowd which occupied
the marketplace. He grinned, and thanked those Gods and lucky stars
and whatever else all over again. He'd discovered at least a small
portion of the fleet, a refuelling station, and an easy enough way to
get to it.
He dared to lift himself to his feet and look down over the
balustrade. This building had no back doors, but it did have a window.
He glanced at the edge of the crowd, lined up against the fence
stretching out either side behind this house and others, to make sure
no-one had seen him: but all attention was still turned toward some
location far off in the direction of the Marketplace, Mollopods
stretching and craning their neckless heads around in fruitless
efforts to catch glimpses of action. Then Ingen headed back down the
stairs, clearing away the furniture at the bottom with a little
difficulty and an equal amount of swearing at the fact his own
obstruction was in fact obstructing him.
After some searching - the house was a little more confusing than he
thought it should have been - he found that single window on the back
of the house. He found a strange ornament on a shelf in the room,
around the size of a bowling ball and about as heavy, and through it
out the window. It smashed more like brittle plastic than glass, and
then the window frame simply swung gently open.
Ingen cursed again, then climbed out through it and made a break for
the silo-housing.
He only encountered one Mollopod in the entrance to the building,
making its way out with another house. He shot it and for a sickening
instant, time slowed down as the bullet flew whizzed through the
Mollopod and continued on through the air toward a silo behind him.
Ingen screwed up his eyes, expecting a swift death, but the bullet
merely bounced off elsewhere with a loud ping, barely leaving a dent
in what was obviously a carefully and wisely reinforced container. He
groaned with more relief than he thought was possible, and then
entered the building to search.
Nobody else was inside: they were probably all busy refuelling ships.
But as well as being unable to find workers, he was unable to find
anything resembling an off switch for the facility's power, a valve to
begin to empty the silos, or a knife to cut the hoses with, which
appeared to be plated with metal anyway.
But once he reached the back of the silo-housing, he did find
something useful. A number of barrels lined the back wall. Some had
spilled over, revealing what looked and smelled like strawberry sherry
and other alcoholic beverages. He dipped a finger in to taste-test one
of the barrels, then removed two empty flasks from his pockets and
refilled them before setting to work rolling the barrels back toward
the entrance of the building, piling them back up before the one of
the frontmost silos. After two more trips he discovered there were a
few wheeled devices which seemed to be made for carting the barrels:
two were already fully loaded with roughly eight each. He carted them
back to the silo as well and then rolled two last barrels out, pulling
their lids off and throwing their flammable contents over the pile
he'd built up.
Once that was all done, he commenced the next action on his mental
list of things to do: "Run like hell and find cover."
He did just that, and ran to the farthest building he could still see
from beside his pile of barrels. It took him a minute to get there;
the distance was a comforting thing. He certainly didn't want to be
anywhere nearby the silo facility for the next thing he would do.
Ingen smashed through one of this house's back windows to climb into
an empty room. Was the whole population busy trying to kill the humans
he'd seen here? He turned back to the window, poked earplugs into his
ears, and then hoisted his Winchester. He slid a flat switch on the
side of the gun: something inside clanked a few times and a compact
scope popped up above the gun barrel. He took aim, and through the
scope he could already see Mollopods crowding around the cluster of
barrels, most of them scratching their heads and other locations, one
of them already beginning to roll a barrel away again. He braced
himself, and pulled the trigger.
The bullet shot out of his Winchester with a louder noise and more
recoil than usual, and he hastily dived toward the room's doorway,
away from the broken window. The ground shook forcefully beneath him
and a wave of heat blasted through the window as a great boom made
itself faintly heard through his industrial earplugs. He grinned in
utter satisfaction as, outside the window, the explosion roared high
up into the air.
Once he knew it would be safe to do so, he got up and looked out the
window. Copious amounts of thick, black smoke were pouring up into the
air from what was now a crater of considerable size. Buildings nearby
were reduced to rubble, and what was once an entire fleet was now
reduced to about a dozen ships and a great supply of scrap metal. And
the dozen that might still be working had no way of being refuelled
for the time being.
Ingen sat back down, content. He hadn't destroyed the entire second
half of the armada, but at least he'd decimated it a little.
And then something sharp pierced his neck. He had just enough time to
realise what had happened and swear, and then with a flash his
surroundings changed.
Before he could get his bearings again, someone dumped a bucket of
something goopy, brown and sweet-tasting over him and bound his ankles
with the unmistakeable clink of chains.
This was just great: he escaped the Mollopod ship prison only to
escape onto the Mollopod home planet and wind up again in Mollopod
custody where he would have ended up anyway. Why did he bother in the
first place? Although, at least he wasn't in a giant blender.
He whiped what he noticed tasted like barbeque sauce out of his eyes
and looked around. The room was probably bigger than a cathedral and
just as intricately and lovingly designed, and everything was pure
white - well, except everything that slimy Mollopods had touched,
which was almost everything in the room. The rug beneath him, which he
imagined might have been luxuriously soft at one stage, was slicked
flat with slime. And a stone's throw away was something unmistakeable.
He was sitting in the Apophallationmaster's throne room. There were
others standing nearby him as well in much the same state covered
unceremoniously in barbeque sauce and chained to the spot, and even as
he looked, someone else appeared and received the same treatment as he
did: a gift of barbeque sauce and shackles. And on his thrown was the
Apophallationmaster himself. He was laughing deviously as he sucked
upon something familiar looking.
"You know, this isn't all that bad, once you get over the fact you're
covered in slime. Well, except that your insides stink." Efof's upper
body was hanging out of the ruling Mollopod's mouth.
The Apophallationmaster opened his mouth wide and laughed again,
revealing a lack of teeth and a general smoothness inside. "You say
that now, but you just wait!" He continued to suck harmlessly on the
blue man. Ingen felt the only thing even noteable about the ruler of
the Mollopods was his ability to talk with half a human stuffed down
his throat.
"No, really, it's like a massage," insisted Efof, who seemed to be in
no immediate peril, apart from the fact he was half stuck inside a
Mollopod mouth.
Ingen groaned in exasperation and held his forehead in one hand. At
least the guards nearby, in decent numbers and well armed, didn't feel
the need to take his Winchester again. He holstered it so they
wouldn't think they had to change their minds, and sat.
Nearby, the Apophallationmaster cackled again and returned to his
dastardly task of sucking Efof to death, something that it seemed
would probably take a while.
< tag, anyone! Another opportunity: get yourself carted off to the
throne room. >

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