In Version; Chapter 22, Slade 219

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Stories from the Verse
In Version
Chapter 22:  Slade 219
Table of Contents
Previous chapter:  Beam 165

Slade forced a laugh.  “Seriously?  Your planet is about to be invaded by aliens who for all we know want to turn it into a chicken farm and fill their larders with your bodies, and you steal the only machine that might be able to tell us what they’re going to do next, and attack the only person in this world who knows how to use it?”

The bird hesitated, but then blustered, “You are bluffing!”

“Am I?”  He aimed the blaster at the assistant, and shot him.  The bird went down.  He hoped it wasn’t a fatal shot; the baseball-like kinetic force ball might have knocked it unconscious, but he had killed birds with this before.  He had the gun targeted back on the other before it could react.

“Shall I ask again?”

The hesitation was briefer this time, but the bird dropped the pistols from its hands, then slowly removed the bandolier and lowered it carefully to the ground.

At that moment a crowd arrived:  the warfare professor had brought the students from their combat class, complete with swords.

“Take these birds into custody; have them kept securely somewhere, but see that that one gets some medical attention.  Joe is going to want to question this one, I’m sure.  Derek might want to kill him, but I think we can dissuade him once he has his computer back.”

The crowd of students quickly descended on the threesome and began escorting them away.  At that point he saw his wife standing on the ridge.  He plodded toward her.

“I feel like that was too easy,” he said.

“You were brilliant,” she replied, “although I only saw the end of it.”

He shrugged.  “I guess.  Any word on Derek?”

“I don’t know.  I came directly here, and I think I passed him going the other way, but I was worried about you.”

He smiled.  “Of course you were.  I do appreciate that.  It turns out not to have been that much trouble.  Indeed, I’m almost disappointed that I didn’t get to fight the guy; but then, as Derek said, I’d probably have killed him, and we probably need to know who he is and what he wants and who he works for.  Joe will want to know all that.”

“Well, then, let’s go see how Derek is and what Joe is doing.”

Nodding, Slade put an arm around his wife and began walking back toward their house.

Next chapter:  Chapter 23:  Brown 250
Table of Contents

There is a behind-the-writings look at the thoughts, influences, and ideas of this chapter, along with eleven other sequential chapters of this novel, in mark Joseph "young" web log entry #478:  Character Conflicts.  Given a moment, this link should take you directly to the section relevant to this chapter.  It may contain spoilers of upcoming chapters.

As to the old stories that have long been here:

Verse Three, Chapter One:  The First Multiverser Novel

Old Verses New

For Better or Verse

Spy Verses

Garden of Versers

Versers Versus Versers

Re Verse All

In Verse Proportion

Con Verse Lea
Stories from the Verse Main Page

The Original Introduction to Stories from the Verse

Read the Stories

The Online Games

Books by the Author

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