Saturday, December 9, 2006

Day Two

She woke up with the taste of dead cat in her mouth.

Actually, that was just the mingled flavor of despair and stale saliva. Morning blahs, how she loathed them. Normally, she'd have a shot of Corellian brandy (preferably a twenty year old single strain; the blended stuff was little better than coolant run-off) and some pom-pon juice for a chaser. That would wake her up proper.

Unfortunately, reality set in a few seconds after awakening. She was likely light years away from the nearest bottle of brandy and if this planet had pom-pon bushes, there were probably covered in razor-sharp thorns or viciously animate.

Trillinae checked herself for that. She was making a very unfounded assumption about this world. After all, she's been nothing about it save that it had no sentient line and was supposed to be extremely verdant. For all she knew, the land was peaceful, the plant life edible, and conditions very hospitable.

She opened her eyes and looking up through the port window into the eyes of a mottled red velociraptor.

A damn fine theory shot to hell.

Scrabbling backwards, her sudden movement startled the predatory reptile and it vanished from sight. Trill reached for her guns but they weren't there. They were back on the Squall, wherever it was now.

She cussed. In Hutt, using the same words she'd taught Jeht months ago.

"Okay... no need to panic. It's as afraid of me as I am of it. It's probably just run off. No cause for ala..."

*WHUMP* The entire pod shook as something slammed into it just under the window.

Another theory down in flames. This was not her day.

*WHUMP* The pod shuddered again, a slight dent appearing in the steel panel. At this rate, the beast would soon be tearing through the hard outer shell to get at the chewy center - her. Trillinae was not good with this outcome.

"What I wouldn't give for one damn gun!" She needed something, anything!

Then an incident back on Cularin came to mind, the infamous "Sister Dear, why did you staple my Jedi to the wall?" fiasco. Or, as Darrus liked to call it, "The night we are never talking about again." affair. Quickly, she crawled through the refuse scattered all over the pod, searching desperately for the torso of her poor, disassembled droid. Apparently, 2-1B units didn't handle crash landings very well. She sympathized.

Finding what she sought, Trill turned and leaned against the back wall of the pod as hard as she could. The next impact caused the roughly spherical vessel to roll backwards, exactly as she'd planned. Once more she leaned and once more the raptor outside slammed into the pod. The door was now directly opposite her, no longer blocked by a ton of flightless metal.

Before the hunting beast could return for another strike, she ran across to the hatch, threw it open, and aimed the lower half of the droid's torso segment directly ahead. Past it, she saw the rushing body of the dinosaur. Its teeth were bared, its eyes bright, and its talons raising expectantly for the kill.

She was happy to disappoint it. Pulling the toggle bolt out of the back of Toob's neck, she made two things happen. The first was that the poor medical droid's head fell off and landed with a metallic thud at her feet.

The second was that the spinal linkage of the robot, no longer held in place by the removed tension rod or the actuators of its disembodied hips, sprang shut. The heavy plating at the droid's shoulders kept it from coming back into Trill's face, meaning it had only one direction to go. Forward.

The raptor barely had time to scream in rage or pain before the coil of high-tensile pentanium carved a hole through its chest and tore its way free out its back. A font of blood erupted around the wound, most of it geysering behind it as the creature fell. Twitching, it spent its last few moments tearing blindly at the dark, rich earth.

Trill dropped Toob's chest and shivered, bravado leaving and after-panic setting in. That right there? Terrifying! She'd faced down New Mandalorians and rampaging dark adepts but this, this was a totally new experience. This fight had been about eat or be eaten, no guns, no lightsabers, no body armor.

Just a lethal predator, a lone woman, and a makeshift....

Wait. What was that thought a moment ago? Eat? EAT!

The rest of the day was spent butchering the raptor with a cutting spanner and cooking it over an emergency flare campfire. It wasn't gourmet Ithorian take out by any stretch but right now, it was enough to defeat another of her enemies out here - starvation.

By the time Trill bedded down in the pod for the night, her tummy was full, her water siphon was humming away as it condensed liquid out of the balmy night air, and all her immediate needs were met.

Well, all but one.

How the fragging hell was she going to get OFF this rock?!?

1 comment:

Erisraven said...

Rrrrrraptors. Darn raptors, anyway. :)

At least they're good eatin'!