They were finally at the bridge. Allan thought it was a little strange. He'd gotten used to getting to his goal only after a ridiculous amount of sidestepping and new problems and fuck-ups. Now, as far as he knew, he only had to open up a comm link, make the call and wait. Of course, he also had to determine whether or not he and Duncan were infected with an unknown virus, survive any and all remaining insane crewmen, find Hunter, and last long enough to get picked up. That was, of course, providing that nothing else went wrong.
Allan decided to stop thinking about all this.
He and Duncan stood before the door that led to the bridge. They'd downed another four dementia-riddled crewmen on the way there. Duncan had hardly said two words to him since releasing the final portion of the lockdown. Allan wasn't feeling in that good a mood, either.
"You ready for this?" he asked, staring at the terminal that would grant them access to the bridge once and for all.
Duncan shifted beside him. "As close as."
"Good. Let's go."
He still only had his machete and Duncan had grabbed a long, red wrench that made a particularly disgusting sound when it broke open a human skull. Allan reached out and hit the access button. The door parted and split open. The bridge was revealed to them: a sparking, smoky wasteland of blood and death. A handful of crewmen waited for him: what remained of the bridge crew that presumably had been locked in when the lockdown activated. There were five of them, one of them wearing a black uniform trimmed with red.
The captain, Allan realized after a moment.
"Let's get this over with," he said, raising his machete.
Duncan grunted a reply and raised his wrench.
Both groups rushed at each other simultaneously. Allan started off the party by bringing his machete around in a broad arc, burying the blade halfway into the nearest man's neck. The blade's edge was already getting dull, he noticed. In a spray of blood, he ripped the blade out, kicked the man back and turned his attention to the next psycho warrior headed his way. It turned out to be the captain. He was older, tall, with muscles that looked grafted on. He filled out his torn, bloodied uniform. Allan groaned internally, this wasn't going to be easy.
In an attempt to repeat his previous victory, Allan brought the blade around again, hoping to sever a jugular, but the captain brought up one meaty arm and stopped the blade cold. The machete reverberated in his hand as hit bone and bounced off. With a roar, the captain leaped onto him, causing him to drop the machete. Allan quickly found himself on his back, powerful hands around his neck, squeezing, cutting off his circulation. Panic ignited within him. He needed to end this. Distantly, he could hear Duncan shouting something furiously.
No time for that now. Allan reached up and grabbed the captain's neck, squeezing as well, but it didn't seem to matter to the man. On top of that, he couldn't seem to get a good grip. Thinking fast, Allan pulled down, bringing the man's face closer, let go of his neck and grabbed his face. He shoved both gloved thumbs into the captain's eyes. Feeling the eyeballs pop beneath the tip of his thumbs, it felt to Allan like he had sunk his thumbs into a bowl of warm mush. Fighting revulsion, listening to the captain bellow his mindless rage, he got his air back as the hands fell away. Allan shoved the man off of him, grabbed his machete and shoved the tip of the blade directly into the captain's forehead. There was a sharp crack, the body vibrating violently, then death.
He was getting the upper hand.
Duncan let out a bloodcurdling scream.
Allan looked over and quickly realized he was not gaining the upper hand. He tore the blade out and sprinted across the bridge. Duncan had dealt with two of the bastards that had come his way, but the third had somehow gotten the upper hand on him. It had jabbed a combat knife through his body armor and into his side.
YOU ARE READING
The eighth novel in The Shadow Wars. After the events of Ceaseless and Snowblind, Allan Gray, formerly a member of Security-Investigations, now a Specialist in Special Operations, is having some trouble keeping sane. He experiences sudden tremors, i...