Written in 365 Parts: 41: One of You Shot Me

A loud scream erupted from the guard as their third hand exploded into shards of flesh and blood. It confirmed that it was a graft controlled by connecting nerve fibres and not just an implant or a controlled appendage. They rocked from side to side holding on to the shattered limb squeezing tight to stem the blood that threatened to spray out. The limb didn’t have a full suit covering so there were no emergency systems to help.

The outfits that the guards wore were combat battle suits, they were probably amongst the cheapest versions of such but would still be fitted with a host of systems. One of the principal systems on these suits was damage limitation, as such the suit could act as a wound patch and even initial trauma response in combat.

Organics who had extra limbs fitted would often wear custom suits. The security guard had foregone that; possibly because of cost but more likely to secrete that third limb as a tactical surprise in combat.

“Quell that yelling or I will silence you,” shouted Boomer their voice echoing loudly in the cavern amplified by the suit speakers. Boomer was moving slowly along the top of the side wall to get a better view on the two guards.

“Let me help them,” the other guard yelled, “please.”

Boomer took a moment to think about it and realised that it wouldn’t hurt and they were tired of the screaming. “Do what you have to, but you try anything cute and the next round will be aimed at the head. We clear?”

“I am not going to do anything, I promise, just let me apply a wound patch.”

“I said do it.” Snappy but not without some compassion. Boomer had managed to move around the side of the vehicles and now hovered silently near the ceiling almost directly above Drick’s vehicle. Boomer was concealed by a rocky outcrop and a thick ventilation duct. The guards were fully visible as was the still form of Drick.

Boomer did a cursory check of Drick’s body, all external life readings were null. No sign of heart beat or respiration. The body was still warm, in fact very warm but Boomer knew that Drick had a slightly elevated body temperature, amongst other distinct differences.

Boomer watched as the guard pulled an emergency trauma pack from a pocket in his jacket and applied a wound patch to the stump of their companions wrist. The patch ballooned instantly on contact and covered the wound with a soothing anaesthetic. The guard’s reaction was one of almost instant relief. They went from hunched in agony to a stiffer more aggressive pose in a few seconds and colour flooded back into their cheeks.

The injured guard tapped their friend on the shoulder for them to move aside and looked to where they thought Boomer was based on the recent gunshot. “I killed your friend good and proper. They weren’t so clever. Everyone claimed they were amongst the best”

“Everyone gets surprised.” said Boomer. “Difference between best and others is how well you deal with it.”

“Death is a pretty final way of dealing with it,” sneered the guard trying to sit up.

“I wouldn’t be so cocky if I were you.” Boomer was watching all of the monitor screens and had instructed their own cover operatives to keep this section of the tunnel closed for the time being.

“Why don’t you make a deal with us. We were not tasked with harming you, as far as we are concerned you don’t exist. We understand that you were just doing your job.”

The other guard, without injuries added. “We can give you the same arrangement. Tell us everything you know and we’ll let you get off planet.”

“Only one major problem with that,” said Boomer.

“That is?” asked the injured guard slowly standing up.

“Me.” Answered Drick as they stood up from behind the vehicle.

The guard was visibly shocked and actually seemed to jump a little in fright, they had taken an involuntary step backwards. “But you’re dead. That’s not possible. Nothing organic could survive that poison.”

“Wrong,” said Drick calmly walking around the side of the vehicle. On an internal screen Drick quickly confirmed that it was Boomer who was hiding in the shadows above the executive vehicle and was relieved to get an affirmation. “As you can see, I survived.”

“But how? I was told it wasn’t possible, that no anti-toxin could work fast enough to stop this shutting down all your organs.”

“I guess that’s true,” said Drick, “I would have to be the type of person who can resist poisons, develop anti-toxins and have vital organs that could be rendered inoperable without it killing me. So while my body brings my kidneys back online we can discuss your surrender and the details that I requested before you attempted to commit suicide.”

“I never…”

“I think you’ll find that you did. The moment you decided to kill me and the second after you did.” Drick smiled, “and just think on this for a moment, while I consider if I should slowly twist of your head or kill you a more painful way. Everything you can tell me, your friend can tell me. So I only need one of you. And only one of you shot me.”

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