"I don't know how many guards are still alive," Shilee's voice rung through the spacious hallway. "So you better keep your gun ready." He peeked around the edge of the wall, searching the irregularily illuminated corridor. "Think it's all safe here, though."
"That's comforting," Poll muttered, her left arm still clinging around Tinn's body. He was still awake, but only barely; every once in a while, he'd attempt to faint again. His sighs and moans were occasionally punctuated with half-sentences regarding Primari acoustics and the modern carrot. She made a quick mental note to look into aversion therapy as soon as possible. "Now will you stop ranting?"
"What, you don't like to listen to me speak? I'm truly hurt, Pollin." The grin in his voice was audible. She clenched her teeth. Aversion therapy. With a mace. "It's been five years, yeah, but that's no need to treat me like I'm no longer your buddy. Remember that stint we pulled on your Lieutenant that once? Man, could she scream. Betcha she never had any lovin'."
"Shilee," said Poll, her voice dropping lower by the minute, "You need to shut up. Even Tinn's starting to make more sense and he's attempting to auto-asphyxiate at the moment - which, by the way, is a skill I'm starting to appreciate in a person. Don't you ever even listen to the things that come out of your own mouth?"
"What, and risk getting hit by my own charm? You know I can't do that to the Universe, and--" At this point, a particularly radiant beam of perfect blue light made a rather stellar show out of disintegrating most of the wall beside Shilee's head. "What the-- Why the hell are you shooting at me, Eevn?!" He hollered, managing an affronted expression, and then disappeared around the corner.
"Well, I guess there’s o-o-one good.. t-t-thing to c-come out of his presence, right?"
The sudden words jarred Poll out of her alert revery. She stared at Tinn for a moment, first confused, then indecisive.
"You never know with Shilee," she said. "But I hope this time it’s good."
"How’d you g-g-get to know a Primari, anyway? C-consorting with the enemy is h-highly forbidden!"
"Because unlike you, he has a brain. If a small one. Stop asking stupid questions."
Another neon blue ray of light scorched a complicated circular pattern into the hull just meters away. The nervous energy within Poll’s body pulled together, in perfect harmony with Shilee’s shrill cry.
"RUN FOR IT!"
She dashed through the corridor and around the corner, praying to every single deity she could think of and a few more entirely new ones that mostly involved the worship of very big, bad expletives. She sped past the three burly guards in the center of the room, pulling Tinner with her as if he was a rag doll.
This was all fine with Tinn. Between nearly losing his head, losing his calm, and losing his grip on his own respiration system, he didn't really feel that there was anything left at all to complain about. Except for, perhaps, the colour of the big block of somethingorother that smacked him in the face and sent him spiraling back into blissful unconsciousness.
“DON’T FORGET ABOUT ME, YOU SILLY WOMAN!” Shilee screeched, clinging haphazardly to the side of a bright yellow cube. His eyes kept speeding from one side to another, and a high-pitched squeaking noise passed through his lips.
The guards snapped to attention as one, their minds clearing up and focused on memories of the detainee clause in their contracts. The light resulting from the following simultaneous burst of fire blinded the room for one precious second, exploding against the reasonably reflective metallic blue walls.
Disoriented once more, none of the three Primari realized the presence of the quickly approaching red pyramid until it had already impacted against their skulls. The result was a rather fetching display of the domino effect, that would no doubt have been analyzed in many Primari schools across the board if it wasn't for the fact that the entire ship was currently in a state of chaos comparable to the W'llramt Underwear Riots of 34 BD.
Squashed against the opposing wall, Pollin squinted. Tinner sighed a squeaky little sigh and passed out again, sliding down against the floor. Poll, breathing heavily, her face full of shock and her legs still crackling with nervous tension, raised her gaze to meet Shilee’s.
"Okay," he said, "So I stowed away. Big deal, right?"
Tinn, happy to see that the Rage of Poll wasn't directed at him for once, began to climb back to his feet. He groped at the walls, unsteadily.
"When this is over," she replied, "I am going to kill you-- TINN!"
Tinn, standing very decently on his own two feet, started. "W-what?"
She smacked him in the face.
"I'm going to kill you," she said again, decisively, "I'm going to kill you both, and I'm going to have a grand old time doing it."
She twisted around and stormed off into the corridor. Tinn and Shilee stared after her, momentarily bewildered.
There was a short silence, as both men attempted to take stock of the situation.
"Nice ass," Shilee decided.
There was another brief silence, and then someone's fist impacted on Shilee's skull. Rattled, he swung around to see who'd done it, finding only an empty corridor.
Tinn took a moment to look ineffectually indignant at nobody in particular.
Shilee stared out into the relative emptiness of the hallway for another moment before his brain caught up with the graveness of the situation. He spun back in time to watch Tinn go.
"Hey! Wait for me!" The Primari hollered, working hard to pick up some sort of speed on the slippery blue floor. "Tiny clumsy scared idiot! Poll--!" Something else smashed against his body, and everything went pastel-blue.
She just kept on walking, her eyes fixed on the sleek passenger jets not far up ahead.
"Gyuuuhr thhrn eesn!"
She paused. "Dammit, Shilee, you know I don't speak Primari. Cut it out!"
She turned around and saw the large burly guard grinning at her, the little crumpled heap at his feet, and what appeared to be the collapsed body of Tinner Estzal, draped over a third corpse.
"Fuck." she whispered.
Dazed, she clung to the hilt of her gun.
She stared at Shilee's corpse. React. React, dammit.
But milliseconds later, though it seemed like an eternity, she lifted up her shooting arm.
She aimed as carefully as she could in the tiny timeframe she had.
She pulled the trigger.
The gun beeped.
Bemused, she stared at it. 'BLUE CHARGE DEPLETED', it said. 'SWITCH TO RED YES/NO?'
She closed her eyes, and cursed every God she'd ever heard of. Especially the Carrotian ones.
Something soared past her, scorching her fur and blinding her mind with agonizing heat.
She looked up again.
She wondered if this was what Heaven looked like.
If so, the Beatified Saint Decoratus had just bought the farm.
Her head snapped back, and she twisted around to see what had happened. Her breath hitched, and she scrambled onto her feet. "Tinn?!" she yelled, nearly tripping over her own feet to get there.
Tinn sat on the floor, his mouth hanging open, his eyes glued to the Primari blaster that he appeared to be choking. "Poll?" he said, "D-did it f-f-fire?"
Kneeling down on the floor in front of him, she began to gently but methodically pry the gun from his hands. "Yeah, it did." she said, her low voice calm and steady, "You can't aim for shit, Tinn. Remind me to take you on course sometime, you'll need it." With a clatter, Tinn's gun hit the floor, snapping apart at the intricate, perfectly straight seams.
"I t-think I'll d-do t-that.." His hands pushed against the wall as he fought to steady himself, his wound momentarily forgotten. "S-so c-c-can I go aboard now?" he asked, his eyes fixed on everything but Poll. "I think I c-could use some rest." He remained in contact with whatever steady surface he could find as he stumbled towards the spacecraft.
Pollin pushed herself back up onto her feet. Her eyes travelled to Shilee now, and the lingering weight of the blaster dangling from her fingertips.
The latter slammed against the wall with a grim but satisfying 'tink'. With sure, confident strides, she ran to the Primari's side. With a slight prod, she rolled him onto his back.
He was still breathing. Just stunned, by the looks of it.
She exhaled. With the practiced ease of someone who had been lifting heavy things all her life, she pulled him up into her arms. "Are you done with that door yet, Tinner?!" she yelled, turning around.
"Yes!" came the answer.
Shifting Shilee's weight, she carried him to the open doors on the other side of the ship. "Why do I keep having to deal with the unconscious?" she sighed, but with a fringe of worry lacing the motion.
The Primari spacecraft was spacious. It seemed to assume a triangle shape, with the idea of walls and roofs mixed up like no one's business. The yellow carpet was fuzzy and warm underneath Poll's feet. She left Shilee spread out on a red couch in the back of the room; it seemed like the prudent thing to do.
She sat down in the large pilot's chair, rubbing her forehead. "Let's get the hell out of here," she murmured.
Tinn remained silent, and began to run laps.