Chapter 07: Shadows

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"So that's what does it," she murmured. "How is this even remotely possible?" she whispered.

"I don't know," Allan replied, straightening up. "But we need to go. Right now."

Another one of the chambers was opening up now. "Go! Go! Make for the end of the room, that's where our destination is!"

He aimed his gun into the chamber and emptied the rest of his magazine into it. There was another puff and a bit of fading shadows, signifying another death. At least they were easy to kill. At that thought, half a dozen more opened. Allan cursed, turned and began sprinting after the others. They hurried back to the blue-lit path and bolted down it, running full tilt. Allan sighted another one of the shadow creatures and fired, watched it pop into wisps and fired a second time as another moved to take its place.

There had to be a couple of dozen things around them now.

And contact with just one of them meant instant death.

No time to think about that now. Allan emptied his magazine taking down another eight of them, then slapped a fresh one in. They hit the end of the room and ran into a problem: it looked like Rogue Ops had been in the process of cutting through another bulkhead but hadn't quite gotten a chance to finish the job.

"Donovan!" Allan called as he dug in his heels, spun around and began opening fire on the incoming shadow things.

"On it!" the Spec Ops tech replied.

More of them were coming now. Callie and Parker stood beside him, all three of them covering Donovan while he grabbed the torch and started cutting away, working as quickly as possible. Allan aimed and fired, aimed and fired, losing himself in the simple, moment-to-moment fact of keeping his ass and his team alive. He burned through two more magazines keeping the shadows at bay while Donovan did his job.

"I'm through!" he called as Allan slapped a fresh magazine in.

"Through the hole!" Allan yelled.

He provided cover fire while the others made their way through the opening Donovan had made until it was his turn to come through. Inspiration struck him as he was trying to figure out how to get through the hole and he primed and tossed a flash-bang grenade he'd brought with him. As soon as he had, he turned and dove through the hole.

"Flashlights on the hole!" he screamed as he scrambled to his feet.

Luckily, his team didn't ask the obvious question of 'what?' Instead, they trained their flashlights on the opening Donovan had made. A long moment of sudden silence went by and Allan thought he saw a darkness trying to push its way in. The lights dimmed noticeably, then stopped, dimmed a bit more...then held.

Allan breathed a sigh of relief.

"That was...really smart," Callie said. "What made you think of it?"

"I just...it popped into my head. All the work-lights, they were so bright and they were everywhere. I figured maybe these things couldn't take the light."

"Good call," Parker replied.

"Donovan, do your thing," Allan said.

"On it," Donovan replied.

While the three of them stood there, keeping their flashlights trained on the opening, Allan took the opportunity to study the room they'd come to. Like the others, the walls, floor, and ceiling had uncomfortable angles and everything was cast in dark metal. Unlike the other rooms however, brilliant, stark white technology coated several surfaces. Cyr technology. It looked completely out of place and almost the polar opposite of the rest of the ship. Allan wondered if the Cyr research staff had felt the same terror while investigating this place.

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