Saturday, December 5, 2009


By Morgs

Archon performed the final safety checks; the magnetic coils were warmed up, the fusion reactor running at maximum efficiency. He was ready to intercept the skag, this one would be messy he thought. He had been on vector heading for Pluto, his interceptor making a 10,000 kilometer long plume as he accelerated towards the last outpost before the deep cold of interstellar space. The skag was headed for Mars. He had been screaming on the broadcast all day now. Arc stretched out his arms as far as he could in his confined cockpit. Two days he had been on hard burn, taking a minimum of 6 g's for the whole time. Normal humans couldn't take that sort of punishment, but Arc was different. He was one of those young guns from the academy, his blue eyes and movie star looks belied the madness that seethed beneath his calm exterior. His perfect frame, enhanced to the maximum for space travel. After an eventful school life at the United Nations Defense Force academy on Mars, Arc began his tour on the Defense Platform Saratoga. Now he was pushing 40 million Kilometers per hour, and would need to keep his acceleration going for three more hours before he cut the engines.

The broadcaster crackled into life, the quantum communicator was linked with central command on Mars, for all intents and purpose communication was almost instant for Arc and the rest of the Force.

"Archon, come in Archon this is Mars command over."
"Archon receiving, over"
"Perp assailed four officers, this one hurts he stole a Pursuit special, one of the G8s, very toey, he's not enhanced. He's making for Mars. Baxster and JG are in pursuit from Platform 62, they won't catch him it's up to you."
"Message Received and understood Archon out"
"That's bullshit I won't catch him, that skag and his floozy there goner die Baxster out"
"Rip the guts out of her give it the bejezus JG out"

Just as Archon is about to reach for a drink, the receiver unit crackles to life again.
"Baxster coming up on him, he is turning vectors... your goner die skag"

The gravity sensors on all the pursing ships signal a massive burst of gravitons from the Pursuit Special. For anyone within 1 million kilometers of the Pursuit Special the brilliant blue beam of energy looks like a ribbon as it bends and flexes along its 20,000 kilometer length. The ribbon slices through space, igniting the oxygen tank on Baxter's pursuit ship. Crystals of escaping gases sparkle like diamonds against the black silk like sky, Baxster's ship yaws and changes course.
"See that Bronze! Do you see me man."

"This is Baxster, unable to continue pursuit he clipped my O2 tank with the ribbon gun. Better prepare the freezers, Johnny coped a food tray in the throat. Baxster out ... fuck fuck fucker shit"

"I am the nightrider; I'm a plasma injected suicide machine. I'm the chosen one, the mighty hand of vengeance sent to strike down the un-space worthy. I'm laying down a deuterium road to freedom..."

"Mars command, to JG don't get cutup like Baxster you can't lose another ship JG Mars out" Laughter is heard by all on the broad cast.

"I hear you just um lost your ship again Baxster, looks like your heading towards Saturn going for a holiday" More laughter.
"Fuck off!" Screams Baxster.
"Mars command, cut the chatter and get back in the game rescue ships have been dispatched Baxster begin deceleration. Mars command out"

Archon carefully finishes his drink and puts the orange container into the waste capture unit. Flexes in his midnight blue space suit. After checking all his instruments for a final time, he begins his calculations. Archon is poking out his tongue as he muses over his calculations. He knows timing must be to the nano second; any mistake in the math will mean he will miss and the pursuit which almost ended in disaster would be meaningless. After a few short moments, Archon reaches for the receiver.

"Come in Mars command, this is Archon in position."
"Continue Archon, take that skag down."
"The Toe Cutter, he knows who I am, one down two to go! die space cops."

A focused telescope on the dark patch of sky between Jupiter and Mars; sees two majestic comets trailing a bright blue-green flame racing towards each other at 40 million Kilometers per hour; the tail is thousands of Kilometers long; the two fiery streams are moving slowly towards each other over the unimaginable distance. That's how it appears to Roy Jones the telescope operator on the platform Saratoga. Roy relays the image over the broadcast to Archon, just five days ago the two of them had been watching movies in the mess hall with the rest of the crew. The frantic scramble to stations and preparation for the interceptor had left the mess hall, well messy. Roy had had sleep, twice in the five day vigil for four hours; he feels tired, worn out and a bit gritty and dirty. Roy knows it's only a few hours now soon he can sleep in his bunk or chill out to some music; maybe even read a book but not till it's over. Roy carefully checks the calculations the computers have made, adjusted for gravitic distortion. He punches them into the computer on the manual keyboard, and sends them to Archon. He then reaches for the slightly worn plastic receiver.

"Saratoga to Archon Interceptor, vector confirmed collision in 2 hours. Saratoga out"
"Message received Archon out"

A tall, average build man enters he switches of the broadcast signal. His grey and green space suit tells Jones that he is the ships doctor, Winston Harp. "Jones" he sighs in a slow drawl. "I think Archons been doing this to long, we should probably give him some time off."
"He's fine, just a bit lonely probably" Spits Jones, clear stress and impatience on his tense voice.

"You could probably do with some time off too"
"Piss off its about to go down" growls Jones.

Sweat starts pouring down the skags face; his straggly beard is soaking it up like a mop. His girl is asleep and he is pulling some drugs out of her top pocket, and popping them like tick tacks. She stirs. "Hey, Mick what time is it, are we on Mars yet?" Her soft sleepy voice jars him like a sledge hammer. "What am I doing, fuck fuck fuck he screams" "What's wrong" as Sandy says it; with a very sleepy voice long brown hair falls around her face like some primeval lions mane. She is floating, weightless wearing a skin tight space suit she picked up at the travel center on the way to the terminal. The bright Tropicana colors clash wildly with the clean white and grey lines of the police pursuit specials' austere interior. Mick looks at her; remembers why he escaped; why he is going to Mars to get out of his contract by defecting to the Freebird colony on the surface. Space is dangerous, colonies are a little safer, he loves her and wants to live with her to grow small plants in the soil and eat real food. Not the shit they sell you on the asteroid mines, made from piss and peanuts or strange single celled cultures. Food, shelter, warmth, and procreation it's not too much to ask. Mick looks at the scanners, they show the police interceptor on a collision course.

"Shit is that a ship" Sandy's voice trembles as she leans over the telescope monitor.
"He's got to change vector soon, he has to" Mick reassures her and pats her shoulder. Sandy sees he is looking tired, worn out and spaced. His breathing is labored and panic is causing his eyes to dart form side to side.

"Give me the stick for a bit honey" she gently takes the joystick from the second seat.
"Sandy I'm fine, this guy is going to turn any second now" His voice is grating and out of breath.
"Well its fine, I mean it's all on auto right you set the course right" she pleads.
"Just go out back and get me a drink or something" Mick is getting angry now. Like two cats meeting in the night they hiss at each other until Sandy heads out the back crying.
"I'm in control, I'm in control" Micks head is starting to nod as he repeats his mantra.

Five million kilometers away, Arc has prepared his rail gun for its single shot. His hands are steady, his gaze fixed on the gravitic engines of the other ship. "Looks like you're not going to move out of the way night rider" he mumbles to himself as he adds a damping agent to the cabins fluid. "I know I'm not moving, if we collide it's all over."

"I'm the night rider, the mighty hand of vengeance"

The two blue-green streaks across the night sky, approach. At the last minute, far too late moving at massive speeds Mick pulls the stick up as he does a tiny neuron in his tiny brain is registering his mistake. The ship appears to be fine; it's now heading towards Venus. Archons ship starts to decelerate, his rail gun fired its single shot using a black marker he marks another ship on the bulkhead.

"This is Mars command, looks like intercept is successful. Ships probably recoverable for forensics teams have setup electromagnetic nets all the way to Venus. Good job Archon. Mars command out"

On the pursuit special, two orange and red bags of goo float in their ripped and torn space suits one a simple company suit from a small and insignificant mining company, the other a bright Tropicana tourist suit

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