The Six – Part 3

June 2, 2010

Read Part 1
Read Part 2

The modified helicopter made good time. They were in Montana before the bickering could really gather steam and Jackson managed not to shoot anyone. The place the helicopter set down was several miles out from the small town. Jackson was the first off the chopper, with Hugh close behind and the others following after. The chopper pulled back into the air, leaving the small group.

A soft beep went off in each of the sixes’ ears, followed by Tesla’s voice. “You are now transmitting and recording. Even if you get spread apart, you’ll be able to hear each other.”

“Can we direct our communications to individuals, or is it all broad-band?” asked Tacey.

“Currently it is all set to broad-band. I’m working on a way to let you easily direct, but it isn’t quite up and running yet,” said Tesla.

“Grand…” muttered Tacey.

Hugh was already moving in a slow spiral pattern outward, crouched low to the ground. He paused a ways out from the group, “This is strange.”

Jackson stepped closer, careful to not move past Hugh and into what he was looking at, “What have you got?”

“Struggle at least started here. But whatever took this man down was so light it almost didn’t leave a trace,” said Hugh.

“Maybe long range fire and then cleanup?” said Jackson.

“Nope, it was definitely here. Faint trace of what almost looks like little tiny shoes,” Hugh motions to a small bit of dirt. “And didn’t bother to clean up any of the trail signs. Though what it did with the men and why their aren’t drag marks or blood, I haven’t a clue.”

Dionysus moved to join them. “Disintegration, teleportation, eating them whole. Any number of ways to remove a body without any real signs.”

“That all sounds so pleasant,” said Tomoe, as she joined the others. “I suppose we follow then?”

Hugh slung down his rifle and double-checked that it was ready to fire. “It moved back toward the woods. Going to be slow going to find it, unless it decides to find us.”

Jackson drew one of his pistols. “I’ll take point with Hugh. Tomoe, think you can handle rear guard?”

Tomoe smiled slightly and bowed her head, “I believe that I can. We are a small enough group.”

Jackson nodded and motioned Tacey and Dionysus to the center. “Loose spread so we have room to move if we get attacked. Be ready for anything.”

Dionyus glared a little at his stun-baton. “Oh, I sure feel ready for anything…”

“Don’t be such a baby. I’m sure you’ve got enough tricks to get by,” said Tacey, a slim black .22 Beretta Neos suddenly in her left hand. “Besides, I’ll keep an eye on you,” she winks.

“When we get back I am so demanding a gun…” grumbled Dionysus, though he did seem to relax a bit.

Hugh lead the way, occasionally pausing and circling out to find another trace. Actually getting at it seemed to smooth the group out a lot, everyone falling in and paying attention, weapons ready.

The path lead them into the woods and Hugh had to trail out to find tracks more frequently amidst the trees and brush. The third time he muttered, “This makes no sense. Something this small shouldn’t be able to do so much damage…”

Dionysus spoke up, “That’s why we’re here. If it was something normal, they’d send more guys with guns. We get to deal with the spooky shit.”

Hugh made a non-committal sound and crouched low to examine a patch of dirt. Suddenly, something dropped from a nearby tree toward Hugh’s back. Jackson snapped off two shots, both seeming to miss. Hugh shifted, but was caught in the shoulder by the small three foot tall figure. Hugh rolled with it, struggling with the thing.

“Is that a doll?” said Jackson as he closed in.

“At least in appearance,” said Dionysus, taking two steps back.

Hugh managed to toss the doll to one side. It rolled through the dirt once and bounced to its feet. It looked hand-made, with dull black stone eyes, a rough cloth body, a suit, and a rather creepily stitched grin.

Tomoe quickly moved in front of Hugh to give him time to regain his feet. Jackson leveled his gun and fired again. The doll seemed to lurch to one side, the bullets whispering past. It’s grin seemed to widen at that.

“It’s fast, I’ll give it that,” said Jackson, circling to the right.

Tacey jumped and caught a branch, pulling herself into the tree and easily moving upward. “Dionysus, any suggestions on slowing it down?”

“Dump honey on it?” said Dionysus, edging to stay behind Tomoe and Hugh.

Hugh stepped out from behind Tomoe and leveled his gun at the doll, “Maybe we can get Jackson to shoot him next?”

Before anyone could snap back, the creature was in motion again. Hugh, Jackson and Tacey opened fire on it, but the thing seemed to dance between the bullets and then leap toward Hugh. Tomoe stepped forward, sword a blur of steel as she drew and planted herself to catch the doll.

The force of the impact pushed Tomoe back into Hugh, who manage to brace her rather than falling over. The doll had it’s tiny hands and feet on either side of Tomoe’s blade. It’s grotesque grin parted, revealing two neat rows of sharp teeth, and let out a snarl of dismay.

Tomoe whipped her blade out, flinging the doll back, “Fast, strong and hungry, it seems.”

“You’d think it would be all full up on soldiers by now,” said Tacey, flinging a knife down to catch the doll out of the air. The blade went through the doll’s shoulder and pinned it to the ground.

Tesla’s voice came over their communicators, “Less joking, more taking down the creature. This team should be more than up to the task.”

Jackson stepped forward and shot the doll twice while it squirmed to pull free. “Of course we are. Now let us do our job.”

“Shit,” said Dionysus suddenly.

Jackson turned away from the doll, “If you’re going to be a coward, you could at least do it before we have the thing dead to rights.”

“Actually, I think we probably just made things worse,” said Dionysus, stepping forward to peer at the doll. “Oh yeah, we are screwed.”

Jackson raised an eyebrow at Dionysus and reached his hand back to finish emptying his second gun into the doll. “I fail to follow your logic.”

“Because that was actually a binding holding the demon into a more manageable form,” said Dionysus.

Tomoe and Hugh closed in as well. Hugh nudged the doll with his foot. “Looks pretty dead to me…”

Tomoe sheathed her blade, “I have to agree with Hugh.”

“Three, two,” said Dionysus, taking several steps back. “One…”

And suddenly the doll lurched upright, falling apart completely. Out of the shreds a large furry, reddish-brown, large creature began to emerge, easily three times as large as the tiny doll, and quickly towering over the nearby humans. It flashes a big point toothed grin at them. “Thank you,” it said, voice a low rumbling growl, words awkward in the big-toothed mouth.

Jackson raised an eyebrow and tucked his left revolver away, and begun reloading the other as he stepped back. “Fall back and regroup.”

The group scattered and the creature almost absently backhanded Jackson, sending him flying.

“I need a situation update,” came Tesla’s voice, “that sounded bad.”


One comment

  1. […] Read Part III […]

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