keeps this site and its author alive.
Stories from the Verse
Old Verses New
Chapter 158: Kondor 95
Table of Contents
Previous chapter: Chapter 157: Brown 53
The explosion of two revolvers firing almost simultaneously was a welcome, if surprising, sound. Kondor immediately turned to see the source, even though he knew who it had to be. Lauren was on her feet, and attacking the great beast. Before he could even turn back to what he had been doing, he saw her race forward, leap high into the air, fire both revolvers again beneath her head while upside down over the beast's neck, and crash onto its back. She again fired the guns, and again leapt into another flip before it could throw her off.
Smiling, he turned back to the remaining creatures. They had a chance now. It was only the one large one and maybe a dozen little ones, and he had killed several of the smallest with a single shot. He went around the circle again, and put another bullet in each, wasting only two rounds. Several collapsed. He heard Lauren's guns fire again before he got back around to see her.
She was now standing on the floor beside it, firing into its flank. It started to turn away from Derek, but a flash of light from the laser said he had burned it again, and it did not know which way to go. Lauren shot it once again, and leapt backwards onto a table above it.
She holstered her left hand revolver and dumped the spent shells from the other. She had to reload, and that left her vulnerable for a moment. But Derek did not leave her defenseless, firing again at its head.
There was no time to stand and watch; the few others still moving were moving toward them. He wondered how long it had been since they had a meal.
Well, whenever it was, let it have been their last. Once more he made the circle, putting one bullet into each of the remaining beasts. One of them leapt at him, but it was a poorly timed leap on its part, as it only bared its underbelly and he was able to put a fatal bullet into its throat.
He heard Lauren's gun again before he was back in position to see her. She was down to one gun now, but still fighting. Derek was changing his power pack, but the beast was too confused to know what to do, and was backing toward the wall. Lauren had it cornered.
As he made a final round of the other creatures, an old memory haunted the edge of his mind. What's wrong with this picture? he wondered. As he spent the last bullet in the M-16 and killed the last of his targets, he realized what it was.
Cornered and wounded beasts always strike.
He drew his pistol and spun around in time to see it leap. Lauren shot again, but seemed unprepared for this and was not going to be out of the way in time. Derek also hit it with the laser. Seeing an open target, Kondor fired swiftly, hitting its mandibular joint, then its ear, then its throat, then its chest.
It never reached Lauren.
He looked around. The room was quiet.
"Are there any more?" Lauren asked.
There is a behind-the-writings look at the thoughts, influences, and ideas of this chapter, along with eight other sequential chapters of this novel, in mark Joseph "young" web log entry #148: Characters Succeed. Given a moment, this link should take you directly to the section relevant to this chapter. It may contain spoilers of upcoming chapters.
As to the old stories that have long been here: