Eclipse Star: Genesis Chapter Forty-One

May 24, 2009 at 7:57 am (Eclipse Star: Genesis) (, )

Eclipse Star: Chapter 41

“Recharge”

 

Recap:  Last time, after Jack managed to escape the onslaught of the nine Hex-Duo robots, the others were still finding it difficult to cope with the day’s events.  Derek finally came up with the solution of resting at a homeless shelter, giving Lindsey a chance to remember a happier time with Chris.  But the reminiscing was extremely short lived as the group finally discovered who Hex-Duo 7 was, slamming Derek in the chest with a vicious double-footed kick and nearly killing him.

 

-As Clinton and the other begin to surround Hex-Duo 7 in the small room, he keeps looking about like he’s contemplating the idea of just telling them to run away instead.

 

Clinton:  How did we let one of the robots sneak into our group?

 

Scott:  (Too tired to really care much).  Because we’re f*cking idiots.  Is that what you wanted to hear?

 

Hex-Duo 7:  (Holding his hand up, pleading for them to back away).  Please understand!  This isn’t what it looks like!

 

Danny:  (Too dumbstruck to really be nervous).  Um…it looks like you just killed our strongest team member.

 

Austin:  (Hobbling over to the hole in the building, looking out to see Derek).  I can’t…I can’t see straight enough right now…

 

Kyle:  (Walks over next to Austin).  Go sit down.  (Squints off at Derek a few blocks down).  He’s definitely not getting up.  (Derek moves slightly, rolling to his side).  Oh no wait, he’s fine.  Well…relatively fine.  See?  Not dead.  Leena, I owe you a Coke.  (Walks back into the room).

 

Lindsey:  (Speaking up again).  Please, leave him alone.  I know he’s a robot but there’s something about him that I trust.

 

Scott:  (Smoking a cigarette again).  You’re not stable enough to pass judgment right now, so go change your tampon and let the men discuss this for a bit.

 

Austin:  (Stumbling back to a crumpled sitting position).  Scott, stop.  Leave the robot be.  If Lindsey says he’s fine then trust her.

 

Kevin:  Austin…are you sure about this?

 

Austin:  If Lindsey’s sure, then I’m sure.  It’s the way Chris would have wanted it.

 

Kevin:  (Quietly nods and sighs).  Alright then.  (Turns to Danny and Willy).  Danny, Willy, help me move Derek back inside.  (The three hop out of the hole in the side of the building and run after Derek).

 

Clinton:  You all know the next move.

 

Leena:  Yep, keep moving.  (Turns towards Hex-Duo 7).  Frick, you couldn’t even give us a night of sleep?  (Sigh).  At least you did something useful, like shutting Derek up..

 

Hex-Duo 7:  I’m so sorry.  I’ll make this all up to you somehow, I swear it.

 

Kevin:  (Bending down next to Derek).  You alright?

 

Derek:  (Blood’s pouring out his mouth, but he’s still alive and conscious).  My ribs are completely shattered…and my…lungs are partially collapsed…do you think I’m alright?

 

Danny:  (Excitedly chiming in).  Yes!

 

Derek:  Ghh…no Danny, I’m not.  (Spits out a mouthful of blood).  Now give me a hand…  (They help Derek up).  Let’s go.

 

Austin:  Alright, let’s move…  (Starting to fade even further.  As he gets up he stumbles and falls to his side, clutching his gut).

 

Lindsey:  Austin…

 

Hex-Duo 7:  I’ve got him.  (Walks over to Austin).  Come on; let’s get you moving.

 

Austin:  (Hardly able to keep himself from passing out).  Just because I trust you doesn’t mean I want to…

 

Hex-Duo 7:  (Nods).  Fair enough.  (Hoists Austin onto his back).

 

*          *            *            *            *

 

-The Hex-Duo models are all checking around the headquarters again to see if Jack’s hiding in the rubble.

 

Hex-Duo 2:  Nope, no sign of him anywhere, Six.  He definitely slipped away.

 

Hex-Duo 6:  Fine.  Let’s cut our losses and move out already.  I’m growing tired of this area anyway.

 

Syrus:  (Standing a few yards away from the robots with his arms crossed).  Having some difficulties?

 

All nine Hex-Duos instantly whip around, caught completely off guard by Syrus’ voice.

 

Hex-Duo 6:  What…?

 

Syrus:  (Pushes himself off the chunk of cement he’s leaning against and causally walks over to the group, looking quite pleased with himself).  I seem to remember hearing criticism about the difficulty of killing a few children.  Not as easy as you had hoped?

 

Hex-Duo 6:  (Calm, but still agitated).  There were a few minor snags, mostly due to a defective member of our group.

 

Syrus:  You can’t even manage your own men?  For shame.

 

Hex-Duo 1:  (Extremely defensive).  Hey!  Seven was a problem from the start!  There was nothing-

 

Hex-Duo 6:  (Holds up his hand and cuts One off).  I’ll admit, I underestimated the resolve that we’re facing, but it’s not a mistake we’ll be making again.  I’ve been purposefully going easy on the humans to see what they’re capable of firsthand.  After what I’ve seen, we aren’t going to be having any more hardships.

 

Syrus:  (Serious).  So, you’re done playing then?  Did you forget that your own personal enjoyment comes second to the mission you were asked to carry out?

 

Hex-Duo 6:  (Pissed off now, pointing an accusatory finger at Syrus).  Syrus, you have no grounds to speak to us like that.  We take our orders from Octavious, not you.

 

Syrus:  Which is probably why you’ve failed up until now.

 

Hex-Duo 3:  We haven’t failed anything here buddy!

 

Syrus:  Are the twelve dead?

 

Hex-Duo 4:  We killed-

 

Syrus:  (Cutting him off).  Do you know where the rest of them are?  (Silence).  Well?

 

Hex-Duo 2:  Well, ung, they haven’t been putting out any readings for us to follow.

 

Syrus:  Energy trails are a foolish way to track children.  They’re not smart enough to cover where they’ve been but they do have enough sense to keep themselves hidden.

 

Hex-Duo 4:  Hey, we wounded a good portion of their team, alright?

 

Syrus:  Did you give them any fatal wounds?  Anything that would have them leaving a trail of blood?

 

Hex-Duo 3:  Hey, they’re probably half dead from what we’ve done to ‘em, alright?

 

Syrus:  But you don’t know for sure.  I knew I shouldn’t have sent a bunch of machines to do this for me.  (Begins to turn around).

 

Hex-Duo 6:  (Gritting its teeth).  How dare you!

 

Hex-Duo 9:  (Frantic).  It’s not our fault!  Seven took all our data files!  We didn’t know enough about the kids to make a proper assault!

 

Hex-Duo 6:  Shut up, Nine!

 

Hex-Duo 9:  (Shrinks back).  Eep…

 

Syrus:  So because you didn’t know all the finer details, you lost?  Real warriors work in the moment, adapting, evolving, actually having to do some work for themselves instead of relying on inaccurate estimates.

 

Hex-Duo 6:  I’ve had enough of this.  Syrus, your life isn’t a priority.  (Looks to the others).  Destroy him!

 

Hex-Duo 4:  (Cracks its knuckles and smiles).  With pleasure.

 

-Hex-Duo 1 fires itself at Syrus while his back is turned

 

Hex-Duo 1:   We’ll teach you to speak ill of us!

 

-Hex-Duo 1 punches at Syrus.

 

-Syrus puts his hand up without looking, catching the punch and stopping the robot instantly.

 

Hex-Duo 1:  (Confused).  Guh?!  What?!

 

Syrus:  (Turns his head back to face the robots.  They’ve all stopped advancing as rapidly).  I wouldn’t advise that.

 

Hex-Duo 1:  Shut up!

 

Syrus closes his fist around Hex-Duo 1’s hand, crushing it.

 

Hex-Duo 1:  GAAAH!

 

Hex-Duo 3:  (Jumps at Syrus from behind).  You’ll never break us apart!

 

BDOOF!

 

-Syrus throws his elbow back, slamming Hex-Duo 3 in the face, denting its head slightly and sending it onto its back, confused as all heck.

 

Hex-Duo 2:  (Worriedly tapping its head).  Guys, heads up here!  Syrus’ hitting his stride!

 

Hex-Duo 6:  Enough!  (All the robots stop and turn back to Hex-Duo 6).  Syrus, I’m not foolish enough to let you fight us right now.  I know that our readings aren’t accurate on you.

 

Hex-Duo 4:  How’s that possible?

 

Hex-Duo 6:  He’s been hiding a great deal from Octavious, haven’t you Syrus?

 

Syrus:  (Lets Hex-Duo 1’s hand go, finally).  How very observant.  Your team may be weak, but at least you yourself have some potential.

 

Hex-Duo 6:  Right now we don’t need any more set backs.  We’ll make a return to the lab and have Charles repair any damages we’ve incurred as well as reload the data files that Seven took from us.

 

Hex-Duo 4:  (Still staring at Syrus, crouched and ready to strike).  But Six, we can kill Syrus right here.

 

Hex-Duo 6:  No.  I’m not playing his game.  And besides, he’s right.  I can’t lead you all properly if you’re outdated, so we need to fix that.  Return to the lab.  That’s an order!

 

All the Hex-Duo robots take off except for Six.

 

Syrus:  No more setbacks.

 

Hex-Duo 6:  Let me worry about my own team.  You just worry about what’ll happen when Octavious decides you’re no longer useful.

 

-Hex-Duo 6 takes off towards Charles Robotics with the others.

 

Syrus:  (Crosses his arms and looks down at the hospital wing crater).  A whole night and they couldn’t manage to kill a single one…

 

*          *            *            *            *

 

-Kevin has taken the lead now, Danny and Willy carrying Derek, Hex-Duo 7 carrying Austin, and Kyle and Leena escorting Lindsey around the back alleys again, looking for any sort of shelter as the morning sun begins to slowly rise.

 

Kevin:  And thus the darkness finally lifted…(Sigh).  But still no respite for the weak.

 

Kyle:  (Talking to Leena).  So what d’you think we should do?

 

Leena:  How would I know?

 

Kyle:  Sorry, just making lighthearted conversation.

 

Leena:  Yeah, asking about my opinion for how best to survive a massive conflict is what I consider lighthearted.

 

Scott:  (Bringing up the rear at his own pace).  So at least that’s one night down.  Not too bad, considering we only had one member killed, one gone missing, and two about ready to die.  Could be worse.

 

Lindsey:  (Looking more exhausted than anyone else, just kinda drifting about as Kyle and Leena lead her around).  Yeah, could be much worse.  I mean, they could find us at any second and kill us.  No warning, just kill us.  And then we’d be dead.  Dead.  Dead dead dead.  Could be worse.

 

-Everyone’s unsure of how to handle Lindsey’s rapid progression into senility.

 

Scott:  (Pause).  See princess, that’s the spirit.

 

Leena:  (Breaking).  Why the hell couldn’t you have been killed?!

 

Lindsey:  (Just muttering to herself now).  Dead.

 

Scott:  I’m sorry; I guess I was too busy watching you run away to have enough time to get killed.

 

Kyle:  Hey, leave her alone; she’s just a girl, alright?

 

Leena:  Oh, so you don’t think I could take care of myself?

 

Danny:  You were running pretty hard to get away.

 

Willy:  Yeah, while the rest of us were looking out for each other.

 

Lindsey:  Dead…

 

Scott:  (Points at Danny).  Pff, you two were just concerned about your partnership being broken up.

 

Danny:  Well someone had to look after Willy!  No one else seems to care!

 

Willy:  (Turns on Danny).  Don’t make it sound like you’re just doing me a favor!  (The two start arguing).

 

Scott:  Hah, look at the cute couple bicker.

 

Lindsey:  (Starting to lose it again).  Dead…

 

Clinton:  Hey, we should be finding a place to rest.

 

Leena:  Oh and now you’re the leader huh?

 

Scott:  Affirmative action at it’s worst.

 

Clinton:  (Gets right up in Scott’s face).  What did you say to me?!

 

Hex-Duo 7:  (Quietly speaking up).  I don’t really think he meant anything by it…

 

Danny and Willy:  Hey shut up, robot!

 

Leena:  Yeah, if it weren’t for your kind we wouldn’t be running around in the middle of the night carrying bodies around, looking for a storm drain to die in!

 

Lindsey:  (Just sobbing again).  Both dead…

 

Hex-Duo 7:  (Also very defensive).  I’ve done nothing but help you all since the attack!

 

Scott:  Hmph, probably just help us die faster. 

 

Lindsey:  You don’t know that!

 

At this point everyone’s arguing amongst themselves except for Derek, who’s unconscious, Austin, who’s too weak to say anything, and Kevin.

 

Kevin:  (Finally losing it and shouting at everyone).   THAT’S IT!

 

Everyone shuts up instantly.  Kevin’s quivering as he speaks, looking like he could either start weeping or killing at any second.

 

Kevin:  How can any of you stand to live like this?!  Right now all we have is each other and you’re trying to throw even that away?!  Chris is gone.  Jack is gone.  We’re not!  We have a chance to salvage something from this and all you can do is argue about petty things.  We need to rest and we need to heal and we need to forgive!  Whether we die now or years from now it doesn’t matter because we’re alive now and we have only God and each other to thank for that.  (Still shaking with anger).  Why can’t any of you see that?!

 

-Kevin finally stops and drops his arms.  Everyone else is too ashamed to say anything.

 

Kyle:  He’s right.

 

Leena:  Well, of course he’s right.  (Stops).  Sorry.

 

Scott:  Dang it, well don’t I look like an ass.

 

-Everyone softly apologies to everyone else.

 

Hermit:  (Pops his head out from a window a few stories up above them).  Hey!  What’re you kids doing out so late?!  Don’t you know there’s killer robots on the loose?!

 

Kevin:  (Everyone’s too dumbstruck to say anything).  The hermit from the desert?

 

Hermit:  I’ll bet you all could use a place to stay for a while.  (Waves his hand at them).  Well come on then, up the fire escape.  (They don’t seem to move).  What’re you waiting for?  A door mat?  Come on!

 

Everyone finally starts moving up the fire escape, with Kevin waiting a few extra seconds.

 

Kevin:  Thank you…

 

Hermit:  (Smiles at Kevin).  Hey, I told you they’d listen if you spoke up, didn’t I?  Now come on, it’s almost light outside.

 

*          *            *            *            *

 

-Jack is badly injured but through some miracle he’s not dead.  He’s trudging his way around the southern part of the city, miles and miles from the Legion’s ruined base.

 

-He finally notices that it’s almost light outside.

 

Jack:  Daybreak.  (Checks his watch).  And no sign of the others.  At least that’s good.  I assume they found a place for the night.

 

Presses his back against the side of a building and slides down to a sitting position, finally exhaling heavily.

 

Jack:  Now let’s see how far I’ve gotten…  (Looks out around he corner at the street sign).  72nd and Autumn.  Good, I’m close.  (Forces himself up again).  Come on Jack, you can rest when you’re there.  (Presses on).  Few more blocks, that’s it.

 

The blocks go quick as he limps along, ready to drop from just about anything.

 

Jack:  Come on 75th…  (Looks up and sees an apartment building).  Finally.

 

-Jack walks up to the intercom and presses a few buttons.

 

-A few dial tones later and someone finally picks up.

 

Voice:  Good God, it’s like 5:45 in the morning; who is it?

 

Jack:  It’s Jack.

 

Voice:  What?  Jack?  What the hell are you doing here?

 

Jack:  Just buzz me up.  I’ll tell you later.

 

A long pause goes by as Jack taps his foot.

 

-Finally the door buzzes and Jack throws the door open, moving inside and closing the door quickly behind him.

 

-After a good half dozen flights of stairs, a man in pajamas and a robe meets Jack.

 

Jack:  Good ta see ya bro.

 

Man:  (Upon seeing Jack he rushes over and grabs him just as Jack about falls over).  The hell happened to you?

 

Jack:  Inside.  And put on some coffee; it’ll be a long story.

 

*          *            *            *            *

 

Jack:  (Sitting on a couch, a blanket draped over him, fresh clothes and bandages on, sipping coffee).  Thanks again for this.

 

Man:  Don’t worry about it.  You were basically passed out for the last hour though while I cleaned you up a bit.  (Sits down in a chair in front of Jack).  So are ya gonna tell me what’s up?

 

Jack:  (Sets his mug down on the coffee table).  Yeah, I’ll fill you in.  Last night the Legion’s Trillium headquarters was attacked by ten robots calling themselves the Hex-Duo.  Their targets were myself and the others that’ve been bothering the Regime so much.  They took the complex by surprise, killing a countless number of soldiers, not to mention…

 

Man:  Not to mention what?

 

Jack:  (Taking this harder than he expected himself to be).  The Commander’s dead.

 

Man:  Dead?

 

Jack:  Yeah.  The lead robot killed him.  Shot him through the chest and then snapped his neck for good measure.  I escaped along with most of the others, but I went back to look for survivors.

 

Man:  Any?

 

Jack:  (Quietly shakes his head).  None.  I was attacked by the robots again.  Seems they’re able to track us.  You wouldn’t happen to know much about that now would you, Nate?

 

Nate:  Come on Jack, you think they tell just anyone about the important missions?

 

Jack:  I don’t know, you tell me.  You’re my only connection to the Regime; help me out a bit here.

 

Nate:  Sorry man, they didn’t tell me anything.  I’m just a low level soldier and I’m not even on active duty this week.

 

Jack:  All I know is that the Regime created a bunch of robots that know way too much about us.  They know our powers and a fair amount of our memories.

 

Nate:  Hold on, they know about your memories?

 

Jack:  Yep, I heard them talking about translating three month’s worth of our memories into their data banks.

 

Nate:  (Figures out something and stumbles back out of his chair).  Then that means they know about our conversations!  They’ll come here looking for you!

 

Jack:  Don’t worry; I didn’t put you in danger.  One of the robots is blocking the memories files from being accessed.  I wouldn’t have come here unless I knew that fact.

 

Nate:  You know for sure?

 

Jack:  (Taps his ear).  You know me.  I planted a bug on ‘em so I could hear what they were talking about.  The damn thing shorted out pretty quick but I heard enough to know that for the moment we’re safe.

 

Nate:  (Sits back down, although he looks uneasy).  Why would you go look for survivors anyway?

 

Jack:  I was looking for that one guy, Chris; you know the one I’d been telling you about?

 

Nate:  They finally killed him?

 

Jack:  Seems that way.  (Looks away from Nate).  And if I find out you’re the one they heard that from I’ll kill you.

 

Nate:  You know you can trust me Jack.  Come on, you need some rest.  Let’s get you some medicine and a place to sleep.

 

Jack:  (Slowly starts to pass out again).  Sleep sounds wonderful…

 

To Be Continued…

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