The Jiminy part 11

Dead. I’m dead. No more work. No more beer nights. No waking up with Kimm….“Kimmy!” He looked at the wall from the floor, his face an agonized mask of loss. “Kimmy’s okay, right?” ‘She will be. Right now she is dealing with your death, and all the paperwork that you left for her,’ the wall printed in tall, light grey letters. “Can I see her?” Please, just let me see her so I know she’s okay. She stood by me when I needed it, and I just took it for granted. I am so sorry Kimmy. ‘You may not. You’re dead. She’s alive. She has a life to build over. You have a job to get to, Jiminy,’ the wall replied in soft, fuzzy looking blue letters.

Travis started to protest, but the feeling of the grey started to ripple along his skin, or whatever he thought of as his skin. The clammy sensation had him bolting to his feet, choking back a terrified scream.’I think you’ve wasted enough time, Jiminy. Get up on the platform and I will run you through the basics of your job for the boss.’ The mysterious printer, (Not sign. Travis he finally decided it was some guy on a computer controlling the screens, like that old movie with the man behind the curtain.)

In truth, he was kind of shocked that he was so calm after finding out he was dead and Kimmy was in pain from his dying. I still feel things, but it’s like it doesn’t feel real. Kimmy’s there, not here, I’m dead, and it’s like another day at the job. Am I losing it? It doesn’t make sense. Why am I not crying more over Kimmy. She needs me and I’d be frantic to see her. But now all I feel is regret, and a little sadness, but it’s fuzzy, like it ain’t real. And now I gotta go see a new boss, a girl boss? I’d be pitching a screaming fit I think if I was still alive. This all seems so distant.

Travis gave a resigned shrug and looked at the raised center of the room. “I go there, right. Fine.” he stepped onto the platform and put his hands around the ski-pole things and braced himself. Nothing happened. “Do I gotta turn it on?” ‘Wait for it,’ came the answer in a mischievous sky-blue lettering with a pink background. Okay, now that just sounded weird. Is this a practical joke or something? ‘Or something’ came the written reply slowly across the grey wall in tall green letters.

The Jiminy part 9

Once he got some overflow into the red-black gunk, he flipped the switch again, unplugged the body, and pushed it to a corner of the room, then trundled Travis’s body to the machine. Travis started feeling sick as he watched his nude body treated like so much dead meat. The embalmer picked up the X-acto knife and pushed Travis’ legs open. He seemed to mumble something and laughed, then cut deep into both femoral arteries in the upper thigh. Travis felt a twinge of sympathetic pain in his legs as the man sneered down at his lifeless body and stabbed the de-sanguinators deep into the open wounds. The man finally turned to face Travis, and he stared back at the familiar sneer. Harry Deeney. Travis had known Harry since primary school, and neither of them liked each other at all. Harry and Travis were the two biggest kids in primary, and Harry started pushing Travis around and in general bullying him. Harry had the advantage in mass, so he invariably won the fights when Travis tried to fight back.

Travis had a growth spurt in middle school and Harry went from being the bully to the bullied. Travis wasted no opportunity. He’d gotten sick of being bullied and it felt so good to put it to Harry. He’d pushed Harry the same way he’d been pushed. It felt so good, being on top that he’d started pushing others around too. It was fun, and big as he was, it was easy. Then, when he felt he had the world by the short hairs, he blew out his knee in the last game of the season. The college scouts that had come to see him play left without a word, and he was left, another casualty of fortune. He’d gotten to asking for the pain pills after the surgery to repair it, and started washing down the pills with beer, and later, hard liquor when the pain got really bad.

He’d gone through the next year in a haze of alcohol and pain medication. He felt drained, and surrounded by a soft fuzz that dulled every sense. Kimmy found him then. She was tending bar at the ‘Lazy Horse’ bar across from the truck stop out west. He was a frequent customer, and they’d started talking. Talk in the bar led to talk outside the bar, and to talk at home, and to other, ‘adult’ things. It was Kim that told him to quit the pills. She didn’t mind if he drank, but the drugs were out if he wanted her to stick around. She was three months pregnant when they married, and a month later, she lost the baby, they both started drinking hard.

Travis hit the bottle so hard it scared Kimmy. He passed out one night and she called the Goldsboro Rescue Squad. Her instincts were correct, and Travis barely pulled through alcohol poisoning. That seemed to give him a wake up call, as he got off the bottle and was sober until he started working for Hillaney Air Conditioning. The company built air conditioners, and Travis was desperate to get back on his feet and take care of Kimmy. The first six months were okay, but then a new manager, Mr. Robert Zillis, was hired.

The Jiminy part 6

That was me? Travis tried to deny it, to convince himself that it was just a dream, but something in him remembered the slip, and the fall catching his head full force as he lunged forward drunkenly to avoid a fall. The stumble turned into a full dive and his head hit so hard he saw flashes. He remembered standing up, and seeing Kimmy’s face as her eyes opened wide and her hands covered her mouth just before it all went dark again. He dimly remembered falling a second time. “That…was me?” He didn’t want to believe it. ‘Sadly, yes, that is you. That’s your last memory.’ The sign seemed brusque, impatient. ‘Now, are you convinced? If not, you can still jump out the window.’ Travis shivered, and stayed on the floor, looking down at his rotund figure in red, satin pants. “What is this place?” ‘This is, for you, your new place, Jiminy,’ the sign spelled impatiently. ‘This will be your home for a long while.’ “What?” The words didn’t make sense to Travis.

I’m stuck here? In this big bedroom where a word would conjure clothes out of thin air like a dream, and a stupid sign that disses me every chance it gets. ‘I heard that,’ the sign scrolled irritably. ‘You’re not stuck in the room. Your office is right through the doors below me.’ the sing spelled out helpfully, then added a downward pointing arrow to emphasize the doors with the odd silver scroll work on them. “I have an office?” ‘Yes, an office. Why don’t you go see where you’re going to work from now on.’ The writing had that ‘I know something you don’t ‘ vibe again. If it’s another thing like … me in that ambulance, maybe I don’t want to go look. It might be one of those creepy haunted house surprise things that scared the crap out of Kimmy when we went back in high school.

Travis stayed put, still naked on the blue-green marble floor. ‘It’s not a jump out and scare you thing’, the sign printed slowly. It actually seemed to be trying to act sympathetic. Yeah right, be my buddy until you can push me into the scare. Nuh-uh. Not this old boy. I’ve seen that, well, done that a few times and I know how it works. ‘Sure you do. I promise, it is not a jump out and scare thing.’ The sign displayed in soft lettering. Really, promise huh? “I got to have clothes first. How about givin’ me my work clothes?” There was a swirl of air, and he felt just like always.

The pants fit like he remembered. The coarse threads scratched a little, and the shirt was a little loose since he’d lost some weight, but they were HIS clothes, and he took a moment in the small triumph of his dream control. ‘It’s not a dr…oh why bother, you won’t believe anything until you face it head on.’ The sign was back to the irritable, exasperated printing as the sentences flashed in sharp lettering across its face. Travis patted the clothes to make certain they were his, then did it again just to be certain. He’d had a few days when he’d been so hung over that it took a half-hour just to make sense of which way to put the clothes on and get to work. I wonder if this is the DT’s and I’m hallucinating drunk. That could be why I ain’t in control. The sign printed ‘……………..’ as if giving up trying to explain or convince Travis of the error of his ways.

The Jiminy part 5

‘How about jumping out the window?’ the sign spelled out in green letters. The way the letters appeared had Travis wondering what the sign was up to now. “You jump out the window first, then I’ll try it, ya darn idjit.” Hah, now if it’s a dream it’ll go sailing though those curtains. ‘I can’t, I’m just a sign.’ it spelled out in white once more. “Oh come on, it’s my dream, you’re supposed to do what I wantcha to.” He pointed at the window, a stern look on his face. “Go on, jump.” The sign flickered an annoying set of colors, then scrolled amongst them, ‘I already told you I can’t. For one, I’m a sign, and for two, this isn’t a dream.’ “The hell it isn’t. I ain’t at home, I ain’t in my reg’lar clothes, and I ain’t had a beer. Ain’t no way this isn’t a dream! I am gonna wake up, get a shower and get dressed for work. I gotta shift to pull. I ain’t wastin’ no more time with a stupid dream!” He crossed his arms stubbornly and dared the sign to do something.

It did, but not what he expected. It started scrolling images. They started blurry, but as Travis concentrated, then became clearer. There was a light, but it seemed distant. There were three men in dark blue jumpsuits, a white and red patch on the left bicep. It was a green cross inside a gold circle with the letters ‘Goldsboro’ over the top of the cross, and ‘Rescue Squad’ on the bottom. Two men were kneeling in his kitchen next to him. There was vomit on the tan linoleum floor near his head, and a puddle of bloo under it. He could see his wife, Kimmy, talking to a police officer and pointing at a chunk of the white formica counter lying next to his head. Travis winced internally as he felt the impact when he’d slipped after throwing up. Wait, slipped? What the hell? His mind ran away on him as he watched the Rescue Squad members wrap his head with gauze, then slide a flat, yellow board with holes for handles on the sides under him. Three officers moved next to the three medical techs, then bent over, slowly lifting him up.

Then they shuffled out of his kitchen, and into the cold December night. The WHite van with the red stripe had it’s lights flashing next to the boxy white ambulance. Headlights illuminated the blue striping on the sides, and the tan police cruisers just beyond it. He watched as one Med Tech unbuttoned his shirt and pulled it open. He grabbed the stethoscope from around his neck, then stuck the disc to his chest. The tech was a young kid with a thin face, and leaned body. His wisp of a beard made him look like one of those skateboarding punks that were over at the park on the weekends. The tech raised his hand and shouted at the others, while making made a circling motion. The team jumped into action, pushing him in the back with his shirt still open. The ambulance spun it’s rear wheel in the dirt then dug in and the ambulance rolled away, red lights flashing. He saw it go down Drumhill Street, and turn west onto 119th avenue, and out of sight.

The Jiminy – part 4

“OW! Miserable, moth**8&%@& **&^)()(**!!.” He was cut off in pained mid-rant when the room shifted again throwing him away from the wall and rolling him back across the floor and halfway to the bed. What is going on?! Did that freaking sign have something to do with all this?! He looked over to the sign, the bottom edge lit up and the bluish light moved up and down looking like two hills growing then receding. It reminded Travis of a shrug somehow. ‘I had nothing to do with it, Jiminy.’ “Jiminy?” Was this some kind of insult or put down? The only Jiminy that came to mind was the little cricket in that animated movie about some wooden puppet. ‘Got it in one’, the sign scrolled. Travis swore that somehow it had a smug edge to the letters.

A slight breeze reminded him he was still butt-naked. “How the heck do I get some clothes around here?!”

‘I told you, ask for them’, the sign replied with a smug flourish of letters. “Okay genius, how do I ask for them?” Travis thought the sign suddenly looked, well, impatient. ‘You ask by saying what you want.’ The sign scrolled the letters very, very slow, and big, covering the whole height of it top to bottom. It felt like it was trying to yell louder and slower, which made Travis more frustrated. ‘Remember the thong bikini.’

That shut Travis up, and he shifted to sit cross legged in the middle of the bright blue-green marble floor. “What I want, huh?” Travis stared at the sign, daring it to print something. The sign obliged, with ‘Exactly’ scrolling across it’s face with what Travis felt was smug satisfaction. He hated smug satisfaction in people, they were always so stuck on themselves. “Okay, I want a set of silk pants and a Hugh Hefner smoking jacket.” His naked rear suddenly felt a sinfully smooth cloth against it, as a comfortable, baby-soft coat settled around him out of thin air. He looked at his now-covered arms. “Burgundy.” ‘Yes, a satin burgundy smoking jacket just like Hugh Hefner’, the sign scrolled with a bored flourish of letters.

Travis glowered and took off the jacket. It his dream, obviously, how else could you explain Hugh Hefner’s smoking jacket? ‘It’s not a dream’, the sign scrolled with a series of contemptuous dots at the end of the letters. Travis started doing a slow burn. If it was his dream, he darn well could get what he wanted, and what he wanted was his regular pair of Dickies slacks, and his blue button-down shirt, his black belt with the Budweiser logo on it, and his Red Wing steel-toed boots. What he really wanted, was to wake up. He’d heard you could wake yourself out of dream by forcing yourself awake. Well, supposedly you could by hurting yourself, but he’d already bit his fingers and didn’t wake up, so what to try next?

The Jiminy part 2

Travis scooted to the edge of the bed, then stopped. Where do I find some clothes around here? He felt very uncomfortable realizing he was naked as a jaybird in a huge fancy, empty room, in a huge bed with blood red satin sheets, and not a towel or bathrobe to be seen. Another thought intruded. Where the hell do I get a beer around here? For the last sixteen years, he’d always started out with three beers with breakfast. It got him through the morning at that rotten job setting the housing around the air conditioning compressor. That was all he did for twelve hours a day, six days a week, fifty-two weeks a year, shroud air-conditioning compressors.

The floor manager, or ‘FM’, was always down his neck, telling him he ought to be moving faster, and the beer buzz was just enough to keep him from dropping the shroud on the miserable floor and riveting him in it. Lunchtime would roll around and it’d be six beers in his truck out in the parking lot to keep the buzz going for the rest of the shift until it was time to hit the bar and really unload. He really wasn’t a drunk, he just drank to take the edge off his problems. ‘You were a drunk’, the sign flashed. “No I’m not!” ‘Yes, you were.’

“Where do I get some clothes!”, Travis yelled at the sign, since it was the only thing communicating with him. ‘Just ask for them’, the sign prompted. “Huh?” Ask? Does it mean someone delivers clothes? The thought had him going neck deep in the luxurious feeling satin sheets once more. “How do I do that?” He was getting used to this dream. It was weird, but at least it isn’t a nightmare. ‘Oh, this is not a nightmare.’, the sign prompted once more. It seemed to Travis that the sign seemed to flash with a smug ‘I know something you don’t ‘ attitude.Travis decided he didn’t like the attitude the sign was scrolling with. He decided to give some back. “So what is this, Mr. Know-it-all?”

The Jiminy

Hiya and welcome to 2017! May your be filled with awesome and grand things for you all! And, thank you for stopping by to read and comment. Everything helps and I sincerely appreciate any and all feedback. Now to a new story I’m calling, ‘The Jiminy’. I hope you enjoy.


Travis Hoad lay in bed. The sunlight crept slowly up until it caught his eyes. Travis groaned and squinched them tighter against the irritatingly cheerful brightness. He heard the wind flutter the curtains, and the sounds of birds calling. I must have opened the window last night? I don’t remember doing it. Travis sat up, his arms overhead. The sheets slid down his body like silk to puddle in his lap. He yawned loudly and stretched his arms out to the side. This feels awesome. I must have had a great sleep. Maybe I should keep the window open more often, and stopped mid-stretch. My sheets never felt like this before. He opened his eyes. The bed stretched a good eight feet to the end, and at lest six to either side. The blood red satin sheets were overlain by one of navy blue. The window stretched from wall to wall and floor to ceiling. The curtain was pulled shut, but fluttered at the center of the bottom, where a window or door was open.

Is this a dream? Travis quickly looked at his left hand, then bit down hard on the first two fingers. “YEEEOOW!” Okay, it wasn’t a dream. “What the hail is this place?” The room itself dwarfed the bed, looking to Travis like a football field from the foot of the bed. The walls were a good, according to Travis, sixty feet away to either side. The wall opposite the glass window-wall was black. Not just black because of the shadow, but black wood that had an odd silver filigree that he could see in complete detail despite being so far away. The silver wriggled and wiggled on the wall making odd back and forth convulsions, creating what two his eye were two wrinkled microwave potatoes pressed against each other in a sad attempt at a circle. As he continued to look at the door, a bright light snapped on over the top, with the words ‘Are we awake?’. He tilted his head, wondering who that sign was for. ‘It’s for you, Jiminy’, the light spelled out. “Me?” Travis pointed at himself. No, this can’t be real, I’m still dreaming. The sign scrawled out in an irritated scribble, ‘You already bit your fingers once, care to try again?’ scrolled the sign.

A Last Good Day Part 1 ( J Dark )

(( This is a possible idea for another story ))

“Do you tshink that’s deep enough?” the boy running the white and red backhoe shouted. His tousled brown hair ruffled in the breeze as his brown eyes glanced over at his father. His son, Dirk was so similar to him that people had teased him about being cloned. The boy, at twelve, was only a few centimeters short of his father’s height, and his large, lean frame hinted at the bulk his father carried.

Dirk scratched his nose as Harlan Zachary ambled over next to the rumbling machine, and looked down at the gash dug in the ground. “Lemme check it”, he yelled over the noise of the engine. He pulled out a yellow tape measure, and drew out four feet of tape. He lowered the bare end down into the narrow pit. His own red-blonde hair curled like he’d stuck his finger in an electrical socket, and didn’t pull it out. It peeked out from under his Tim Horton’s hat in fuzzy glory. His weathered features at odds with the babylike curls.

He carefully tapped the bottom of the trench, he turned the tape towards the sun, and squinted at the reading. “Thirty eight inches.” He turned to his son, and gave him a thumbs up. “That’s perfect. Now, widen it by one trench on either side of this, and have it two feet short of the back fence. I’ll paint out the parking and storage areas. Then we can save your mom some cookin’ and get a burger and some fries.”

Dirk’s eyes lit up. “I’ll besha a larsh drink I get the tsresenches dug before you get the shpots painted!” Harlan gazed fondly at his son. “You’re on, Dirk.” Harlan’s eyes glinted mischeviously. “Readysetgo!” He dashed to the small house, and was through the door just as the backhoe’s engine revved up. Harlan ran to the utility room, snapping the fluorescent light on as he flipped the switch by the door with learned instinct. The paint and compressed air brush was where he’d set them by the door. He grinned and grabbed them, spinning on his heel as his elbow flipped the softly humming fluorescent lights back off. Harlan trotted back out to the back yard, and slowed to watch his son handle the rented backhoe.

The sun was starting to settle in the west, giving a gold and pinks glow to the few overhead clouds. The breeze carried the scent of saltwater and fish from the Atlantic Ocean as he watched Dirk drop another load of dirt on the pile.

Dirk dropped the scoop next to the trench, then dug into the dark earth. The edge of the trench crumbled as the scoop hooked up a load of earth. The scoop curled under the arm, like an elephant’s trunk. Dirk lifted the hoe up then rotated to center the scoop over the pile of earth next to the backhoe. The scoop uncoiled, dumping the earth. He rotated the scoop back, leaning out the side window to gauge where to set the scoop for the next bite of earth. His blonde hair ruffled in the light breeze as he slowly dropped the scoop just in front of the previous gash. Harlan heard light footsteps behind him.

He looked back over his shoulder as his daughter stepped next to him. Willow Zachary stood as tall as her father, at one-point-nine meters. Her hair was mouse brown with red highlights in the sun. Willow might have conjured visions of a thin, tall woman, but she was almost as stocky as her father. She bore the weight well as she competed in girl’s soccer, rugby, and hockey at the Halifax Western High School. Willow just gotten home from her job at Henri’s auto repair. She was one of the student mechanics there, earning credits for a trade school position after graduation.

“Hey, I thought I was going to get a chance to run that.” Willow’s lower lip stuck out in a cute pout as Harlan glanced over at her. She’s got her mother’s delicate features, and my big ol’ body. Harlan let himself drift back through the years, to when he’d greeted her just after her mom’s labor. I could hold you in one hand you were so small. Now look at you, big as me and twice as smart. How did I get so lucky? Lord knows it can’t have been clean living. He turned his attention back to the backhoe, lest his daughter caught him daydreaming. The tw watched Dirk finish the second cut. “I’m gonna beash you da!” Harlan blinked. Oh yeah, the ‘race’! That’s what I get for daydreaming. He hustled out to the back yard, dragging the paint sprayer and carrying the white paint. “Willow! Come help me set up, your brother got a head start!” Laughing over her brother’s protests, Willow joined her father in marking out the parking area and driveway as Dirk chewed at the yard with the backhoe.

Harlan beeped the horn twice. The yowling beep of the horn was punctuated by Dirk’s shout. “Cfome on Mom! Weefe are waiting!” Ruth Zachary came gliding out the back door of the house, and glided to the passenger side door of the well cared for Chevrolet S-10. Barely one and a half meters tall and forty-five kilos fully clothed, she looked like a dainty Chihuahua next to a bunch of burly Rottweilers. But like the old saying, she was a small woman with a BIG attitude.

“What kept you?”, Harlan queried as she sat down and reached for the seat belt. “There was something about a disaster in California on the radio. The news said it was big, but there were no details about what happened.” “Huh.” Harlan backed the S-10 up and out onto the paved road. “California’s got earthquakes, maybe that big one all those scientists have been predicting happened.” He dropped the transmission into drive, and drove down the street towards downtown Halifax.

Hack the Future part 10 ( Steven Schaufler & J Dark )

„I am Irelle.“she continued, as if nothing out of the ordinary had just happened. Then she turned briefly to her companions and addressed them as well. „Remember, don’t harm them! We are here to enter into a contract with them.“ The two elves simply nodded, and raised their glasses towards TJ and Blade. Waiting.

„As I said earlier, I wish to discuss a job with you, should you be interested.“ she looked directly at TJ. Her golden, cat-like eyes locking on his – which no longer seemed to be the dark, thunderclouds they’d been just moments ago, but had reverted to his usual bluish-gray, and holding them in an eerie, unblinking stare. She raised her glass to his. Watched. Waited. He was still angry but, more than that, he was curious. He almost seemed confused. Irelle’s lip twitched slightly in what might’ve been amusement.

„If you raise your glass and drink, we’ll negotiate. If you set the glass on the table, we will leave in peace. No harm will come to you through me or mine.“ She finished that last sentence with a smile that showed her teeth. If anything, that smile only made her look even more dangerous.

TJ had been unfazed by her intent stare, though as she finished speaking, he sighed softly. There was the briefest moment where he glanced towards Blade, then he closed his eyes and pinched the bridge of his nose between his thumb and index finger. He almost wished his partner weren’t here. Almost. Oh well, he couldn’t keep all of his secrets forever, and if there was ever a time to spill this particular one, it was now. „In peace, you say?“ he muttered softly. But if he wanted an answer, he didn’t wait for it, for even as Irelle nodded, he muttered even more softly „Very well…“ Dropping his hand from his nose, he slid it under the glass. Letting the container rest on his palm, while he steadied it with his other hand. He raised it to the elven woman and nodded, then turned the glass by one hundred and eighty degrees, before he intoned formally „Vala zhi; Vala zhi’rha; hla zhi, zhi’rha Vala!“ before flashing Irelle a wide, insolent grin.

The four surprised gasps that assaulted his ears in unison were like music, the incredulous stares from Blade and Irelle’s gophers washed over him like a gentle breeze, and seeing sorceress’s aloof poise shatter, if only for an instant, brought a self-satisfied smile to his lips. He brought the glass to his lips and took a long, deep drink, then sighed softly as he savoured the taste of the rich, amber liquid. Damn! It’s been ages since I had this stuff… Never one to let opportunities slip by, TJ reached down and lightly patted Irelle’s foot, just before he gingerly pinched the sole of her shoe at its open-toed tip not unlike he’d pinched his nose just a moment ago, and moved her dangerously positioned leg aside. „Serrahn, and not a recent vintage either“; he mused aloud after swallowing the heady fruit wine. „Someone came prepared, it seems.“

„Not prepared enough, evidently“ Irelle replied, her eyes meeting his. Watching him curiously and carefully, as the moment of surprise finally faded. Her guards glared daggers at him and, from the corner of his eye he could see Blade looking at him with an expression that seemed a perplexed amalgam of ‘What the fuck?’ and ‘We need to talk!’ Still, he couldn’t quite get that smug grin off his face, so he merely shrugged and addressed the blonde elf. Who, he noted pleasantly, had also taken a drink, just as her helpers did. „Twice now, you mentioned a job. So why don’t you be a dear and kindly elaborate on the nature of said job?“

If Irelle was irritated, she hid it well. Once again, she made sure her hair didn’t cover her runes, then she took another sip of wine before setting the glass on the table and slowly standing with as much grace as she showed when sitting down. „I will of course get to that“; she said in that soft soprano of hers. „Though as we’ve reached an accord, there is something I must do before then.”

And so she did. Once again she held his gaze, as if to convince him that she really didn’t mean him any harm, as she reached out her hand and slipped it under the collar of his shirt.

Those long, slender fingers felt cool against his skin and, though he knew it wasn’t the case, it was as if she was caressing him. That impression was brief, however, because he suddenly felt her nails dig into the flesh of his shoulder, just around the angry wound the bullet had left earlier today. The pain was much the same, if not worse, and it was only the fact she held his gaze that he didn’t flinch. He wouldn’t give her the satisfaction. So he simply sat there with gritted teeth and clenched fists, as her elven magic knitted his flesh and skin back the way it was before that Dayner fucker shot him.

It took all of ten or fifteen seconds before his shoulder looked and felt like new. After Irelle had withdrawn her hand, he rolled it a few times just to be sure but, it didn’t even feel sore anymore. The blonde elf smirked. „And you’re back to one hundred percent!“ With that she turned to face Blade, and slowly dropped down onto one knee, and even as TJ muttered „So I am, much obliged.“

The elf’s sharp nails dug into his partner’s damaged leg. He smiled as he watched the process. Having just gone through it himself, over a much smaller area, he could only imagine the pain Blade must be feeling right about now. As such, that she only sucked in a sharp breath through her teeth showed she was as tough -or as stubborn- as he was. Nodding encouragement at her, he reached over and clamped a hand over her shoulder in support.

Fixing Blade’s leg had taken decidedly longer, though how much longer he couldn’t say. And he took another mental note of how all this healing magic didn’t seem to wear Irelle out in the slightest. On the contrary, he’d watched the elf, and halfway through the process, she had suddenly blinked, then grinned almost wickedly as she cast a sidelong glance up at him. Standing slowly after she was done, Irelle still wore that wicked, secretive grin, and she trailed her long fingers along Blade’s natural arm, then along her shoulder and neck. When she leaned in, TJ almost thought the sorceress might plant a kiss on his partner but, she merely gazed at her as her fingers brushed along one of Blade’s ears.

Irelle frowned. TJ quirked his brow at Blade in an unspoken question but she didn’t meet his eyes. Instead, he heard Irelle laugh, and wished he hadn’t. As musical as it sounded, it was a decidedly eerie laugh, which stopped as suddenly as it begun. The runes on the side of her head flashed white hot, and she spun towards the mages just as TJ saw them both reach for their wands. So much for peace!

Hack the Future Part 6 ( Steven Schaufler & J Dark )

“He’s gone, we’d better get scarce too.” Blade nodded, and focused on the alcohol. Her burned lips and tongue mumbled out the spell once more. The plastic bottle started softening in her hand and she immediately threw it at the glass. She and TJ darted back to the other side of the narrow room, barely avoiding getting splashed. The window, made of Lexan, melted quickly, but for Blade, it was a glacial process. TJ took the time to re-store the plastique, and the detonator back in the hollow heels for later. He grabbed the chair he’d sat in and a hard yank tore the corroded legs in half. Hefting it, he threw it with all his might and the window splattered outwards, giving them a gaping hole to dive through.

TJ was already more than just a little irate about how this job had gone down but, as they both barely managed to not get splashed by Blade’s acid projectile, watching his jacket melt away was the icing of today’s cake. It pissed him off so much that he threw the chair with such force that Blade’s acid might’ve been superfluous. However, after a quick once over of the killed guard, they’d managed to not only retrieve their guns from his corpse but, surprisingly, he’d also had the polished aluminum cube tucked in one of his pockets. „Not a total loss…“; he muttered to Blade over the blaring alarms.

They both cleared the hole cleanly, and managed to avoid any of the melted spatter. The alarms blared their shrieking warning through the whole facility. They grabbed their weapons, and then headed down to the garage. Miraculously finding their vehicle still parked and unmolested, they drove quickly away, the alarm still blaring behind them. The garage security door had been torn off its mountings and thrown aside, leaving them a clean exit, which they took.

As uneventful as their way to the garage was, he couldn’t help but wonder if the alarms were going crazy over them leaving, or that damned Vampire running amok somewhere in the building. And if it was the latter, what the hell was that thing doing here? Something, he decided, that they’d have to think about when they got home. As the black 1980 Quattro sped out of the garage, he smirked a bit; Vampires have /some/ uses, it seems. Racing away from Dayner like a bat out of hell, albeit to a different song blaring over the speakers, he had to eventually blend in to normal traffic. At least until they made it out of Spandau and hit the A 10. Then all bets were off, and coaxed every last bit out his old Audi.

…and it was also time to at least try and lighten the mood a bit after this fiasco. Leaning over to open the glove box and stow their hard earned prize, he got the first good look at the sad state Blade’s leg was in. He knew all about her ‘special upgrade’ but, he’d never actually seen the hefty price that came with using it. „Remind me never to ask you for a footjob.“; he muttered with an insolent grin on his face. But when he didn’t get a response, he shrugged and concentrated on putting as much distance between himself and the Dayner building as fast as possible.

TJ drove like a madman on the A10, slowing only enough to match traffic and avoid any attention. It was a long, tension-filled trip back to their flat in downtown Oranienburg. Once there, Blade ran to the bathroom and grabbed the bentonite clay suspension, swallowing a mouthful as she focused on a healing spell. The agony in her mouth slowly subsided as the clay absorbed the remaining acid, and healed the burned tissues. She walked back into the small living room as TJ poured some bentonite on his burn. The whole job had gone pear-shaped. Depending on their employer, they might have a contract on them by tomorrow if he, she, or it decided they were a loose end.