"Get it set?" Deker scanned the area warily. They had met more resistance at this depot than they expected, and they were a bit on edge.
"Yeah," the somewhat portly soldier grunted loudly as he hauled himself into the "hare," a larger version of the rabbit they had commandeered from the previous post they had "visited" using fake orders.
"Loose some freak'n weight, will ya!" Deker laughed and shook his head.
"Sarge..." the soldier slapped his ample buttocks, "... right here!"
"Watch it, LB, Watch it!" Deker tried to sound annoyed as his driver snickered. "Alright, let's hope BA did his job. Let's get to Miss Mickie's."
"On the way!" His driver floored their rabbit, slamming Deker down into his seat as the vehicle lurched forward and quickly gained top speed.
Zig-zagging to avoid patrols, they sped down darker side streets and back alleys into an area of the city known as the "Canteen District." Here a man could find his desires for food, drink, and other "physical needs" fulfilled. Frequented by soldiers, sailors, laborers and other such types, it was avoided by most everyone else.
Situated in a large two-hundred-year-old house overlooking the bay, Miss Mickie's was the best known and most expensive "pleasure house" in the district. It was also the cleanest, the healthiest, and the one with the best looking "house girls." The Night Stalkers were not only customers, but assisted with procurement and security when not on missions or in the brig.
"Eerie." Deker's sandy-haired driver mumbled as he brought their speed down to a crawl. They had seen no one almost the entire time they'd been in the city. No vehicles, no one on foot. Only the occasional patrol contributed any movement or life at all.
"Curfew..." Deker sighed, "... does make sense. Even if... shit!" He glared toward the house. "Two crawlers."
"We go in," Deker smiled. "What else? Do it real slow and quiet like."
Two tracked vehicles favored by the creatures were parked in front on either side of the front porch. No one was evident as they pulled up next to them and dismounted. Deker glanced at LB who snapped a quick nod and disappeared around the side. Three tense minutes later he re-appeared, coming around the porch.
"Another one around back." LB huffed and puffed. "They're all inside!"
"And lose the cigarettes too!" Deker grumbled under his breath.
"Here comes BA." Deker's driver motioned down the street, while a rabbit... and another hare, were rolling towards them.
"There's something wrong." LB stared at the house.
"Yeah," Deker chuckled and nodded to a crawler, "they're here."
"No... I mean bad wrong. It's too quiet in there."
Deker glanced at the house, then spat. "Shit." He looked around as BA and his other two vehicles approached. "We got trouble. If it's big and ugly... kill it."
"Even Mickie??" BA grinned.
"Cute," Deker scowled, "come on. How long, by the way?"
"Five minutes." LB glanced at his watch.
"Agreed." BA nodded.
"Ok then," Deker smiled slightly. "Let's kick ass!"
Three on each side, they gathered around the front door. They paused briefly to listen, then Deker slowly and silently turned the knob and pushed the door open. He nodded and they rushed inside.
An oversized matronly woman was sprawled on the floor, the back of her head blown out by a bullet entering the middle of her forehead. Two "house girls" lay across the chair and couch in the parlor, in the process of being consumed by four creatures. Deker motioned B.A. and his team up the stairs, waiting until they had reached the top step.
"Now!" Deker barked and pulled the trigger.
The creatures shrieked as the twelve millimeter rounds from their "burp" guns slammed into their backs and sides. Deker's team moved from room to room downstairs, killing the "patrons" and saving what girls they were able to. A speedy release was the only help they could give a few. Upstairs, the scene was much the same. Three minutes later the silence had returned as quickly as it had left.
"Gedownthere!" BA tossed an officer down the stairs. Deker snatched him up and slammed him against the wall.
"He was with Bubbles. She's ok." BA grinned as he slammed another magazine into his gun.
"Like hell I am." A chunky blond whimpered as she staggered out of a room, trying to keep a robe at least somewhat around her. Deker scowled, and jammed his gun under the captain's chin.
"What's this about??"
"Orders!" The captain tried for arrogance." Colonel Brannis has ordered all housegirls and freelance whores killed. They will not... be allowed... to undermine our new society."
"Is that so." Deker hissed. "Well then... let's keep your genes from being a problem too." He moved the muzzle to the Captain's groin and fired. The officer howled as he grabbed his wound and crashed to the ground.
"Been want'n to do that to an officer for a long time." He smiled up at the girl. "Come here." He held out a hand.
"Bubbles" shook violently a moment, then fled down the stairs, slamming into him and wrapping her arms tightly around him.
"Oh God, Oh God, what I saw!" She squawled as she buried her head into his neck. "Oh God!" Bubbles released him just in time to retch and vomit out the day's meals.
"Sarge." His driver tapped Deker and motioned up the steps. LB stood on the landing, tears streaming down his face as he held a girl, no more than five feet tall, in his arms. Her head dangled limply and a torn mass of flesh dripped from where her left arm used to be.
"Leave her." Deker sighed and turned to Bubbles.
"No!" LB glared. "She goes with us.
"LB..." Deker turned back as deep creases formed on his forehead.
"She's still alive! She's going! Or I'll blow this freak'n..."
They jumped as six blasts went off in unison throughout the city, setting off a chain reaction that continued to grow with intensity. "Damn!" BA's red haired and bearded driver grabbed a wall. "What'd we hit?"
"Good job..." Deker smiled, "... good job. Alright, let's go. Let's get the girls to the vehicles. LB..."
"I'll... I'll check her." Bubbles grabbed Deker's hand. "LB," she motioned, then grabbed her stomach, "bring her down here."
Bubbles clamped her eyes shut a moment and bit down hard on her lip. The girl's arm had been torn out of its socket. Though some rudimentary first aid had been done (the artery was tied off) the resulting wound was not an encouraging sight.
"LB..." Bubbles watched the girl's fitful breathing, "... this... can't be... fixed."
"Please!!" LB gyrated up and down. "She's... the only girl... who... ever.... Sarge, dammit, please!"
"Get'er outside." Deker sighed. "Let's go girls... now!" He shook his head as he watched LB race outside with his.
Seven other girls, all that were left of the usual twenty-five, were led or carried to the vehicles. Deker knelt beside Mickie's body, closed his eyes and mumbled, then removed a locket from around her neck. He took a last look around, then went outside.
"Blow'em." He motioned to the crawlers.
"Here??" BA scowled.
"Here... now. Do it!"
The charges were placed, then they mounted their vehicles and sped away toward the main road. They were no more than fifty yards way when the crawlers exploded, sending flaming debris in all directions and igniting the house. It burned hot and throughout the night, leaving little more than fireplaces and ash to be picked through the next morning.
"Thank you." Bubbles laid her head on Deker's shoulder.
"For what?" Deker fought off a smile.
"For it all, Turkey..." she smiled, "... for it all.