26. Return to Mechatropolis, Part III   1 comment

Meanwhile in Space…

Episode 26: Return to Mechatropolis, Part III: Escape from Mechatropolis

Sundance slowly backed away from the pod as the robot inside jerked back and forth. The pod to the left of it lit up, then the one to the right of it. Pods on the south wall started to light up.

I think now would be a good time to get out of here,” Astralyn said. She and Kjartan slowly backed out of the room. Timmy was right behind them.

All of the robots were reactivating and climbing out of the pods. Timmy and Sundance took out their laser pistols and took off running down the corridor. The robots immediately ran after them with surprising speed. Sundance and Timmy turned around and shot at the robots with amazing accuracy. This caused the robots to slow down in their pursuit of them, but not completely shut down.

Captain!” Timmy called Sundance’s attention to the fact that more robots were joining the chase. “There’s too many of them! We can’t fight them all off!”

Just keep shooting!” Sundance commanded.

Astralyn and Kjartan led the way through the corridors, trying to remember which way they had come. Astralyn knew that they didn’t take too many turns, but even the simplest of directions under pressure could easily turn complicated.

They stopped at a four way intersection. “I don’t remember being here,” Astralyn said. “None of this looks familiar.”

All the walls look the same,” Kjartan added. “I knew we should have brought some bread crumbs! I even had a sandwich for lunch.”

Not helping,” Astralyn mumbled.

Sundance and Timmy, who were bringing up the rear, caught up with Astralyn and Kjartan. “Why has the running stopped?” Sundance demanded. “Must go faster!”

Astralyn didn’t want to tell him that she didn’t know where they were. She looked at all three directions and took a deep breath. Let’s try forward, she thought. She ran straight ahead and the group followed.

The short pause allowed the robots to gain some space. They reached out their arms for them, yearning to touch them. As Sundance continued to pummel the robots with laser beams, he took time to realize that they had mouths. Before he could question why they had mouths, he saw that when they opened, there were rows of sharp metallic teeth.Why in the world would robots need teeth? Sundance thought. Just keep shooting them and hopefully we won’t need to find out.

Timmy and Sundance continued to fire at the robots, but they seemed to be impervious. Sundance tried shooting the first line of robots in their eyes, but the robots kept coming. There didn’t seem to be any weak spots.

Oh come on!” Sundance shouted.

Astralyn led the group down a corridor to right and was relieved to find the bridge that led to the tomb they entered from. She ran towards it as fast as she could. The bridge trembled with each footstep. She thought it was because of the combined weight of everyone on the bridge, but as she neared the end of the bridge, she realized that the bridge was withdrawing back into the ship.

Hurry up,” Astralyn shouted. “The bridge!”

The others already knew. Astralyn was first to make the leap from the bridge to the sandy floor of the hut. The gap between wasn’t that wide. Kjartan had to jump a little further, but he managed.

Sundance and Timmy were still walking backwards, shooting at the fast approaching robots. They seemed to be walking in place, like a metallic treadmill. The gap was growing wider.

Timmy, go ahead and jump,” Sundance commanded. “I’ll be right there.”

Timmy wanted to argue, but he knew that there was no time. He placed his laser pistol in his belt and turned to jump. He made the mistake of looking down into the black abyss below.

Timmy, hurry!” Astralyn said. She held out her hands as Timmy made the jump. She caught him and pulled him onto the ledge. “Sundance!”

The robots were now on the bridge with Sundance. No matter how many laser blasts he fired off, they kept coming! There was no point in firing anymore. He placed his pistol on his hip and turned around to make the jump, only the gap was too wide and growing wider.

Captain, come on!” Timmy called. “We’ll catch you!”

Sundance looked back at the alternative. He had no choice. He took a deep breath and jumped from the bridge. It was in mid jump that he realized that he was going to come up short of the ledge. He was going to fall to his death in the abyss below. The edge of the spaceship, assuming it was saucer shaped, would catch him and break his fault.

Kjartan! Timmy!” Without communicating her thoughts, they quickly linked elbows as Astralyn leaned out into the gap. She reached out her free hand and with amazing strength, caught Sundance. “Don’t let go!” she commanded.

Kjartan and Timmy pulled Astralyn and Sundance back into the hut. They collapsed in a heaping, panting pile, thankful to be alive.

Kjartan was the first to sit up. “We’re not out of the woods yet.” They all sat up and saw that the bridge was no longer retreating. Once they learned that their prey had escaped, they flipped a switch and now the bridge was extending towards them.

The door!” Sundance shouted.

They all got up and ran to the open door. Since it swung inward and to the right, they all got on the left side and began to push. The door did not want to move.

Push!” Sundance commanded.

What do you think we’re doing?” Astralyn replied.

A little help!” Kjartan called out.

The other archeologists ran into the hut and immediately knew what to do. They all gathered at the door. With their combined strength, they were able to shut the door. The robots pounded on the door, demanding to be let in. Sundance leaned with his back against the door and wiped his brow.

Humans 1, robots 0,” he said.

As if on cue, the entire tomb began to quake. The ceiling cracked and threatened to come down on them. Everyone ran outside just in time for it all to collapse into a pile of dirt. It was then that the entire crater started to shake. Something bigger was coming for them.

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One response to “26. Return to Mechatropolis, Part III

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  1. Uh-oh, something came through! 🙂 I can’t wait to see what it is.

    The part before they have to jump the gap was a little confusing – but I think a lot of that is just the frenzy of writing during NaNo. 🙂

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