The Raven Haired Rogue by John Zakour, Illustrated by John Dallaire

ZNJRavenHairedRogue32Vote at the end of this episode!

Zach has somehow managed to once again upset Merinda’s aid Alicia who has grabbed him in anger and intends to do him harm.

Episode 32

Once again I find myself toe to toe and chin to eyes with an angry Alicia. On one hand, I had to give her credit for being so loyal to her boss, Merinda. On the other hand, being grabbed and threaten grows old really fast.

Want me to mentally blast her?” Carol asks again in my head.>

No, I need to handle this myself, Carol. Pay attention to the others though and see how they react.

Not wanting to let this go on any longer I decide to put a hard stop on the situation. I grab the wrist of the hand Alicia’s holding me by. In one fluid motion I spin backwards and into Alicia, locking her underarm on top of my shoulder. I bend and pull her forward, flipping her over my shoulder. Alicia hits the floor with a very satisfying thud.

“That will teach you once and for all not to mess with me!” I tell her firmly.

Glancing up quickly at Alicia’s coworkers I notice Maxxx has a wry smile on his face. Tezza is shaking her head but doesn’t look very upset with me. Hal50 is the interesting one, just standing there, but I notice his orangish robotic fists are clenching.

Carol can you pick up anything from Hal50?” I think.

His brain is human but being in that android shell makes it harder,” Carol thinks back.

Try!” I think. “Team up with HARV.”

Zach that is actually a decent idea,” HARV thinks.

You don’t live as long as I have doing the job I do without one or two decent ideas. But I realize I don’t need HARV and Carol to team up to deduce what Hal50 is about to do. His eyes narrow and focus on me. I have seen that look often. He is getting ready to charge. The only thing that would make it more obvious is if his back foot started to twitch.

Never mind,” I tell HARV and Carol with my mind. “He’s going to rush me.”

“Yes, we have come to the same conclusion,” I hear echo in my mind in an eerie HARV and Carol mix.

Before I have time to contemplate how mega creepy that is, Hal50 races at me, hands now curled into fists. “Leave her alone you cad!” he shouts.

I’m a fairly big guy: nearly two meters tall and around 90 kilograms. Hal50 though is bigger than I am. Plus, I’ve tangled with enough pure androids in my life to know they are stronger than normal humans. Luckily, I had two things going for me. First, I played a bit of quarterback in high school, back in the day before they declared football too dangerous and replaced human players with androids. (Of course an underground human football league still thrives.) Not to mention that I do get attacked a lot. The bottom line is I am used to being rushed by bigger guys. Second, as anybody can tell you, I’m not normal. Not even close.

HARV, you powering up my muscles if I need an extra boost?” I think, keeping one eye on the charging android.

Of course, Zach.”

Even with HARV’s boost I need to time this right. Just as Hal50 reaches me I drop my shoulder down to a level below his waste. As Hal50 hits my shoulder I grab his back with both my hands and arch my back. My move sends him flying over me crashing on the ground maybe half a meter past where Alicia is laying.

“Sweet move,” I hear Maxxx say.

“Okay we’re not giving Mars a good name here,” Tezza says.

“People, Zachary is our guest, remember he saved Saturn,” Merinda says sternly. “Don’t make me give you all a mental time out!”

“Woof!” Saturn agrees.

Hal50 didn’t seem to hear anything anyone said. He was furious. From the ground, his android arms telescope out and grab me by my ankles.

“I did not know he could do that,” Tezza says.

Just lovely, I think. I need to end this fast. Of course the question of the moment is: how? Vote below on what will happen next or if reading in email click Take our Poll.

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2 responses

  1. What part of the android is his waste? The pelvic area? And what is motivating the android to defend Alicia?

  2. Blast his arms off or melt them into a puddle. They can easily be replaced on an android, but at least it will slow him down for a while.

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