04/02/21 Snippet, PROCESSING DUTY.



I hadn’t gotten more than five steps from the door when two damned Runners tried to jump me. Nasty things; like a scorpion about the size of a cat, all slime and black scales, and they jump. There were actually three of ‘em, but the third had its hooks in somebody else’s face, so I only had the two to deal with. Lucky me.

First one, I zipped right away, but the second one leaped, the way that they do. I ducked down — okay, okay, I half-fell to the floor. Lost the zip-club, but I needed that hand to grab at my pockets. Found my mouthguard, put it in. Should’ve done that from the start, but I wasn’t thinking.

As I got back up from having one knee on the floor and my side against the wall, I saw the Runner I zipped starting to uncurl. I took a second to smush it good, with one foot, and then the second Runner jumped out at me from a shadow again. This time it got me right in the kisser.

Now, normally when that happens the Runner digs in tight, shoves its tail down your throat, and does some things I’d rather not talk about, right? Use your imaginations, Agents. But I had the mouthguard, so it wasn’t gonna do any that, you know, indelicate stuff.