Say what now? (Part X of SkiFi)

It was over in a moment. A flash of a high-energy pulse weapon and a bright blue blip speeding towards me as I dived out of its way.

Obviously, you don’t just dive out of the way of Remus Piddleberry’s legendary sharpshooting skills.

I didn’t think that last thing I’d see before I died was a scruffy, lanky alien. Definitely not this scruffy, lanky alien – although, S’va divine beauty had brightened up the cargo hold considerably. I was thankful for that, and for the fact that I was going to die inebriated – THAT I’d foreseen.

Instead I saw the universe’s richest sentient being, creator of masterful war strategies, the only known intelligence to have solved Plagrom’s Labyrinth in under a day, the rediscoverer of the long-lost KahKha-One planetary system (considered to the Zygote of Civilisation by many cultures) – was lying on the floor doubled-up in laughter.

“BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH…*pant* did you see his face, S’va baby, ahahahahaahaha *gasp*… ah it was priceless, hoohoohoo!”

I also saw that I wasn’t dead.

“Heeeeheeehee… oh you poor pariah’n piece of garbage… no, story time is not just over yet. All you have to do is ask,” he said, from his new vantage point, his back to the floor.

“I… I’m not dead?” My snake-like reflexes which made me dive out of the way had one other unintended consequence. I was soberer than a shrub in a desert.

“No.. hahaha… no you’re not.”

“So you missed?”

This seemed to annoy Remus enough for him to stand up and stick his L-Beam in my nose. Damn, he was fast.

“Whaa…” I started, and tried to squirm away from the offending muzzle. He shoved it a little harder into my face.

“Does Remus Piddleberry miss?”

“Whaa…”

“Does; Remus. PiddleBERRY. MISS?”

“Whaaaa…”

“Say ‘What’ again. SAY WHAT AGAIN. I DARE YOU. I Double Dare You, MotherFucker. Say ‘What’ one more goddamn time.”

This sounded oddly familiar. It dawned upon me that I might be missing something…

“Aaaah… you, you don’t?” I said, feebly.

“No, I don’t.” The L-Beam stopped making love to my nostril. “So what do you conclude from that?”

“Err…That you missed on purpose?”

The muzzle came back for round two, like an octogenarian on viagra, or a dog without. “No. I. Don’t.”

“I’m made from some previously unknown indestructible substance that can withstand L-Beams?”

“The only thing indestructible about you is your stupidity. But let’s put your story to the test, shall we?” He stepped back three paces – my face was relieved – without lowering his gun. “Keep your eyes open this time, you’re gonna want to see this.”

“Whaat NOOO!!” I heard myself scream. I felt a little embarassed. I wanted to say ‘Oh no, not again.’ On instinct, I covered my face with my arms, not like that would’ve helped.

And waited.

Nothing happened.

I peeked out over my arms, to see a gun and Remus standing behind it.

“Knock it off, don’t be a pussy. Face your death like a man.” His rasp seemed positively delighted at the prospect of executing me.

“No thank you, I think I’m quite happy not living up to your expectations of my manhood right now. In fact, my manhood has been rather underwhelmed by these events, and isn’t used to being so treated when its out in the open like this.”

As I said this, clothes materialised around my body, and I was once again in the torn, singed, muddy, ragged flight suit I was wearing during my last bout with Freddie. Such a relief. No clothes since have ever made me feel that way. However, my arms held still, crossed over my face.

“But you’ll miss the best part.”

“Ah, yes, the best part. This might be nice for you, but I assure you, it’s only because you’ve got the best seats in the house. Frankly I wouldn’t mind a seat behind a gun…”

I heard a Zarquonian M357 Arm Rifle clink next to me. “Go ahead, pick it up,” said my tormentor.

I could see it lying a few feet from me. “You’ll shoot me as soon as I move.”

He casually tossed the L-Beam behind him. “I’ll bet I can get to my gun and shoot you before you get to yours.” He hadn’t started moving yet. Come on, the odds were in my favour, I had to go for it.

This is the end of you, Remus, I thought, and lunged for the M357. I grabbed it, swiveled around and opened fire in a wide arc.

He just stood there.

Maybe it’s on a tracer setting, I thought. I checked. Nope. This M357 didn’t have a tracer setting. It didn’t have ANY other setting except ‘Vapourise’.

Maybe I missed. Haha. No seriously, maybe they’d drugged me and impaired my Target-locking 12th sense.

Annnyyyyhow.. I aimed dead straight at Remus’s chest and shot. And what I saw next perturbed me. The spectral pulses seemed to simply get absorbed by Remus’ armour.

“You should try aiming for my face. Armour’s made of metal. Why do you think I stripped you naked in the first place?” He smiled. Why wasn’t he going for his gun?

I readjusted my sights, and fired. He got out of the way, picked up his gun and hid behind some cargo, all in one fluid motion. And then, almost as though he’d lost the will to live, he stepped out again.

I shot at his head. Pulses smacked him in the face, but dissipated into nothingness. He didn’t flinch. And started walking menacingly towards me.

I kept shooting, having no effect whatsoever on Remus. He walked right up to me, knocked the gun out of my hands and said: “Now. Let’s find out if you’re indestructible.”

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