Truth. Justice. Minesweeper.

Monday, December 06, 2004

My phone call was from One-Eyed Jack, on his penphone. "Do you know what's happening?" he said.

"No. I heard explosions," I told him.

"Spaceships attacking Empire City. It's happening in L.A., London, Beijing, Mumbai and Rio too. I've seen four ships here. There may be more. We need Perseid."

"She's coming," I said. "I think she's talking to Greyghost now. Targets?"


"Right. I'll put the word out."


Linnet, Cassie and I converged on the table at the same time, threw down some cash and told Ron we'd have to catch him later. "Wait a second," he said. "What the hell is going on?"

We weren't waiting for anything, though, and booted on out of the restaurant. I could hear more explosions in the background, plus sirens and assorted chaos. Linnet looked at Cassie, and said, "I'm pretty light to carry when I'm a cat." The obvious thought at that point was, what the hell good is turning into a cat going to do when you're fighting spaceships. It must have shown on our faces, because she added, "You know. So I can help people."

They slipped into an alley, and thirty seconds later Cassie, now in helmet and silver jacket, streaked up into the sky with a black cat in her arms.

The fastest and safest way to the office was probably on foot; I could make it in fifteen minutes if I hurried. As I hustled along, I called as many penphones as I could. No answer on most of them (which isn't surprising) but I did manage to roust Fantastic Man out of bed and bring him up to speed.

The power was out in several places along my route to the office, and a few buildings featured smoking craters. I tried not to look at any of the details of these catastrophes; I was close to panicking as it was and if I saw anyone hurt or dead it might push me over the edge.

I was crossing the Fourth Street overpass over the Race River Parkway, and looked north. There was, no shit, a spaceship zooming low over the highway, following it south and shooting golden laserbolts at everything that moved. I broke into a run. The ship was much closer now; it was dark green and apparently covered in leaves. Odd. I didn't make it to the other end of the overpass before the ship blew it away with a laserblast, but I did get to a part that stayed intact.

Arrived at the office, no problem, and settled down to coordinate information. As far as I could tell, there were seven ships bombarding the city, and Bob had already reduced that number to six. I was watching TV coverage of a dogfight between Cassie (she must have dropped Linnet off somewhere) and one of the green leafy motorscooters when Ingrid showed up with news.
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