They stared in shock as the lifeless body slowly collapsed in on itself then fell to the floor in a crumpled heap. It didn’t comically fall forward or backwards, just downwards. They were covered with blood, fragments of flesh and bone, but barely registered the fact. A low moan escaped from their open mouth to become a laugh. Nervous at first then growing to giddy uproarious outbursts that tinged on the hysterical.
“Well you’re dead now, Drick. You’re dead now.” They cried in glee. They would have cheered and leaped about if they were not chained to the bed.
There was a commotion in the adjacent room. It sounded like repeated shots from a rifle or machine pistol. If they got the weapon sounds right it was probably a flechette weapon. High powered, magnetic burst, projectiles. It ejected shards of metal in spray that shredded whatever it was aimed at to a distance of about thirty metres. Clumsy, but very effective. It was favoured by a number of street gangs. It was almost useless against modern armour. There was a new sound. Heavy thump sounds from a much bigger weapon. That was a gel blaster similar to the shot that Drick had fallen apart over.
There was a huge explosion that shook the room, rattling the door in its frame. From the adjoining room there were screams and then suddenly the door to this room burst open. They barely had time to duck beneath the covers, or bury their head into a pillow, before a young person came through the door. They looked more female than male, clear gang tattoos on the neck and face from one of the street racer groups. They would take careful note of which gang later. That gang would pay the heaviest price for their association with Drick.
The gang member saw them and was suddenly moving straight at the bed when a hazy figure appeared behind. It was someone in full combat armour with displacement shields to stop laser weapons and optical targeting. They had a weapon of some kind, long and bulbous, levelled at their shoulder. It was hard to determine details with the shimmering field. A single shot was fired and the gang member’s chest burst open in a manner the bed ridden captive would have called delicious.
The ganger tumbled to the ground and the figure in the suit came through the door sweeping the room with their weapon at shoulder height. A second suited figure followed them sweeping their weapon the other way.
The occupant of the bed didn’t speak. They were still slightly stunned. It was a moment before they realised they were being addressed. “Sir. Sir. Are you hurt? Control we need medical in here, they are restrained and seem disoriented.” The figure looked over at their companion who called “clear.” Then they turned back, “Sir, can you understand me?”
“Y-yes,” surprised to hear their own voice stammering.
“We are here to rescue you. We will have you out of those restraints in a moment, a medical team will be here in a few seconds.” They turned to their companion. “Get those restraints off immediately, I will cover.” The other figure placed their rifle over their shoulder into a harness and moved over to the bed. A few seconds later they were free of the straps and rubbing bruised wrists.
“Thank you,” they muttered as a new figure, slighter armour and no displacement shield, came into the room. The new figure had the blue medic flash on their left shoulder, a sign of a non-combatant.
“Have you been hit?” the medic asked immediately as they came to the bed clearing their mask so that their face was visible. The text on their mask identified them as official medic, government registered, presenting as female.
“No, it isn’t my blood, it was theirs.”
“I still need to check you. Can I attach a monitor to your network port?”
“No. No direct connections. I will broadcast to your public feed.”
The medic pulled a small medical computer from a case and switched a few clumsy looking switches. Built for the battlefield or to be used in heavy suits it was bulky and durable. The device allowed the medic to bridge into the patients internal implants. After a few moments the medic nodded their head. “Seems within tolerable ranges. I can give you some sedatives for the tension.”
“No. I need to be alert.”
“I am going to give you a broad spectrum jab then, nothing but boosters and stimulants that will enhance your body and implants in self repair.”
“Good, when can I move?”
“In a few minutes.” The medic was readying a medical pharmaceutical module to mix up the required treatment.
“I need to get out of here as soon as possible. I have systems to lock down and a kill list to build.”
“Sir,” the first suited figure came back into view, “our orders are to keep you here while we secure the whole compound. We have to make sure we get the entire team that are situated in this area. Then it will be considered safe to move you. Your safety is our priority.”
“Dammit. Can you get me a secure network set up in here?”
“I can have a battle computer brought in with a direct line to a scrambled satellite link. That will have its own drone surveillance and mesh network. We can lock it down to being you as the only user. Is that acceptable?”
“It will have to do.”