Characters in this post
View character profile for: Cassandra Jones
View character profile for: Dr Jade Black
View character profile for: Belvedyr 2X4B-666P
View character profile for: I think it started with an A...
I’ve had this half written for ages, so I figured I’d post it with a different ending and sort-of-handwave how we got from where we were to where we’re annoying the Fazons
This all happens several days (or weeks?) prior Plisken and Pornsak being swarmed by biomechanical zombies (or whatever they are)
As you may remember Cass was in a tight spot in a warehouse with some blonde woman, and a murderous alien...
Nervously tightening her fingers around the grip of her pistol, Cass chanced a brief glance around the side of the packing crate she was sheltering behind.
Considering the violence recently committed here, the gloomily lit warehouse was eerily quiet.
“Can you see anything?”
Cass scowled in irritation at the nameless woman hunkered next to her in the shadows; annoyed at both the stupidity of the question and that she had personally put herself at risk, by rescuing her on a whim.
“No” she hissed, her voice an angry whisper in the hope that the woman would take the hint and shut the fuck up.
A sudden flurry of movement on her right, spurred Cass into wheeling and firing a volley of shots after the dark shape of the alien, Sin, as it hurtled between a half dozen packing crates and disappeared from sight.
“Fuck!” she spat “We need to move – Now! That thing is going to try and flank us”
Not caring if the other woman followed or not, Cass bolted; weaving in and out between the containers scattering the floor of the warehouse, trying to put some space between her and the alien.
Skidding in behind another crate, closely followed by the nameless blonde, Cass took a couple of deep breaths before rising and sweeping her gun around the room. They were closer to the exit than they had been, but between them and it was a twenty-metre dash without cover.
“What should we do?” the woman whispered.
Fighting back the urge to snap at her, Cass shook her head “Fucked if I know” she muttered, more to herself than anything. If it came down to it, she resolved, she would have no compunction sacrificing the woman in order to save her own skin. “Do you want to sprint for the exit?” she asked “I’ll cover you”
“You mean: Use me as bait?” the woman sounded offended.
In fairness, it had been a rather obvious ploy, but had been worth a try. Cass scowled. “Do you have any better ideas?”
“Well, I uh...” she trailed off.
Her lips compressing into a thin line, the blonde eventually shook her head “No.” she admitted “Not as such”
Cass briefly considered threatening her with the gun and forcing her to make a dash towards the exit, but quickly dismissed the idea. It would be more effort than it was worth, since the alien would most likely take advantage of the fracas to kill them both.
The crash of something metallic hitting the floor behind them made Cass wheel to aim her weapon in the direction of whatever had just made the sound, but again, there was nothing. The damned creature was toying with them.
“Look out!” the blonde screamed,
Startled, Cass instinctively dived to the floor, twisting to land on her back and aim her weapon upward as one of the aliens clawed hands slashed through the air where her head had been only a fraction of a second before.
Squeezing off a barrage of shots that went wide of their inhumanly fast mark, she scrambled to her feet, already knowing she was screwed. The alien was on her within seconds, it’s seven long, clawed fingers coiling around her throat to lift her bodily off the floor into the air.
Choking for breath in Sin’s vice-like grip, Cass raised her gun only to have it smashed from her grasp by a backhand swipe from the alien.
“Stupid fleshy thing” it said, it’s voice a series of high pitched chirps and clicks, translated into smooth, sonorous tones by the earpiece Cass was wearing.
Up close, with dark spots dancing in her vision, the chitinous alien was the stuff of nightmares. Terrifying mandibles twitched mere centimetres from Cassandra’s face, while two huge compound eyes reflected her struggling to free herself a multitude of times.
Sin waved a clawed hand in front of her eyes “You’ll pay for what you’ve done. Twoso was a friend. His crew will want to know you suffered before you died”
Succeeding in prying just one of Sin’s fingers loose with her hands, the alien twisted and slammed Cass into a packing container. Once. Twice. Three times. Winding and momentarily stunning her.
“Let’s see what you look like when I’ve peeled your soft little face off” Sin smacked her down on top of the crate like a piece of meat, and dug it’s claws into the skin on the side of Cassandra’s head.
Only semi-conscious, she moaned in pain as blood trickled back into her hair, and feebly raised her hands to try and fend off her assailant.
“Get away from her, you freak!” the nameless blonde had picked up the gun and was pointing it at Sin with shaking hands.
The alien let out an annoyed hiss followed by a series of rapid clicks “Cretinous animal. You’re dead as soon as I’ve killed this piece of shit”
“I…” Blondie shook her head and pointed towards her ear “I don’t understand, okay? No translator. Just leave her alone, yeah?”
“Fuck me” Cass wheezed, still vainly struggling against the vice-like grip “Really?”
“Are you all this stupid?” the alien asked, looking back at her and raising a free hand, stiffening it’s clawed fingers for a killing strike.
“Fucking shoot!” Cass gasped.
Time slowed to a crawl as Sin’s hand slashed down towards her face, the scene illuminated in harsh white blaster fire as the woman pulled the trigger.
The pain never arrived.
A brief burst of static and white noise fuzzed Cass’s senses before the warehouse flickered choppily back into view, stuck on a millisecond loop of Sin jerking back and forth, starkly lit by the bloom of gunfire.
There was just enough time to wonder what the fuck was going on before reality soundlessly froze and then winked out to be replaced by “Game Over” hovering in the blackness in large pink letters.
For a brief, vertiginous moment, Cass felt like she was falling head over heels, before her eyes flickered open, to take in an unfamiliar room, dimly illuminated from above by silvery starlight.
Confused, she shifted painfully in the acceleration couch she was strapped into. The movement disturbing a tangle of tubes, snaking down from empty IV bags above her into cannulas studding both her arms.
“What...” her voice was little more than a whisper “the actual fuck?”
Raising her hands, Cass silently took in tubes festooning her arms. There was something on her head, so she clumsily fumbled it out of her hair and frowned at the sight of the AR rig that tumbled down into her lap.
“Ah, Miss Jones. Good to have you back with us.” Belvedyr beamed as he bumbled into the room, pushing a tea trolley ahead of him “I was starting to think you were going to be in that game forever.”
“Belvedyr?” Cass managed in confusion.
“The game you were just playing: ‘After the Queen’, I believe it’s called”
“After the Queen?”
“Yes Ma’am. I seem to recall the blurb on the box saying that you get to kill the Queen of Time or some such nonsense, and then create and shape an entirely new reality of your own choosing. It sounds like the ravings of an imbecile if you ask me. I don’t know why you’d want to waste your time with it”
“Queen of -?” Cass frowned “You mean Brittany? How long was I away?”
“About three weeks, Ma’am. It must have seen like years for you in AR, but there you have it. Can I get you some tea, or do you think you might be able to do your own menial work?”
“Years?” Cass began pulling the cannulas out of her arms.
“Yes Ma’am. Don’t you think you should wait until Doctor Black is able to see you before you do that?”
“Jade? Jade’s here?”
“How about Jay?”
“No,” Belvedyr said patiently “Nobody has seen that scoundrel in quite some time”
“But we had a thing going on. Well, an understanding... of sorts... Kinda”
“I’m quite sure you didn’t. My gossip circuits would surely be in meltdown if you had. The two of you? Together!? Preposterous!”
“Really?” Cass said in a small voice, unable to quite believe what she was hearing “So, Brittany isn’t dead, and me and Jay aren’t a sort-of-thing?”
“I don’t even know who this Brittany is, so I’m quite sure I have no idea what you’re on about.” Belvedyr paused to purse his lips “I’m starting to think that I should call Doctor Black to get you checked out in any case. You seem be suffering from some sort of post-AR psychosis”
“Wait a minute – What year is this?”
“3,000,000 – Give or take a couple of thousand years.” Belvedyr thrust a mug of hot tea into her hands. “Humanity is long gone, you’re one of the lucky ones that came out of stasis a couple of years ago, and I’m calling Doctor Black; although if she’s been playing that game too, then you’re all screwed.
“Asking what year it is, and what have you” he continued, grumbling to himself as he stomped over towards the intercom “The next thing you’ll tell me is that you’re some vicious harlot with Daddy issues, and claim to be a clone of the Queen of England! I mean, how utterly preposterous would that be!?”
“How fucking dare you!?” Cass snarled, painfully surging up, out of her seat “I...” she trailed off “I’m not?”
“Attention all hands” Plisken’s voice echoed across the PA system “You might want to come and see this...”
Dear god, I’m rusty
So, the “it was all a dream” thing is old and cheesy, but it works, so it’s not all bad :P
It moves things back to some point after we came out of stasis, leaving what’s fact and fiction after that up for debate; so while it won’t stand close scrutiny, it gives you the opportunity for a bit of a character reset if you fancy it
We’ll get back to annoying Fazons in two shakes of a lambs tail, but don't let me stop you posting :)