28. Return to Mechatropolis, Part V   Leave a comment

Meanwhile in Space…

Episode 28: Return to Mechatropolis, Part V: Robots of Menace

In the war room, Sergeant Harriman sat at his console, monitoring the satellite system in space. It was supposed to be a routine shift. He and his coworkers usually sat at their desks drinking tea and coffee, even hot chocolate on occasion. They would read the paper, play word games. With Captain Sundance running about pissing off Space Chickens with giant spaceships, things had become more exciting than he could bear. The giant spaceship this morning got everyone really crazy. The thought of a spaceship full of homicidal robots in their own backyard was terrifying. Sergeant Harriman just hoped for a quiet evening.

Sergeant Harriman, I’m picking up something on long range scanners,” said a crewman. “Putting it on screen now.”

No, no, no!” Sgt. Harriman muttered under his breath.

On the large viewscreen, an image of a giant saucer appeared. Sgt. Harriman recognized it as the one from earlier. He immediately picked up the phone and dialed a number. “Colonel, you need to see this.”

Before the sergeant hung up the phone, the colonel walked in and sat down in his chair.

That thing again, eh?” Colonel Graves said, shifting the cushion of his seat. “Fire lasers!”

Sgt. Harriman pressed a few buttons and the lasers fired. On the screen, they were able to see that the robots’ shields kicked in and stopped the lasers.

How is that possible? It’s older than dirt!” Colonel Graves ordered another shot, but it yielded the same result. “What’s the point of having a laser satellite system if everything is impervious to it?”

The spaceship flew right through the satellite defense and headed towards the S.P.A.C.E. Headquarters. It hovered overhead for a few minutes. People all over Citadel City looked up into the night sky and saw the saucer hovering there. They screamed when they saw robots were repelling down from their ship.

The robots landed all over the city and started to round people up. When they caught them, they would activate their jet packs and fly back up to the ship.

All S.P.A.C.E. agents please report for duty,” the colonel said over the loud speaker. All the agents gathered and immediately left to fight the robots.

Sundance and Timmy arrived at the scene downtown and shot at a group of robots that were trying to corner a nice couple.

You there, robots!” Sundance called out as he hopped out of his hovercar. “You leave those people alone!” He and Timmy fired at them. The robots were distracted long enough to allow the couple to escape. The lasers bounced off the robots’ chests.

They still aren’t working!” Timmy exclaimed. “What kind of robots are these?”

I don’t know, Timmy, but just keep firing!”

The robots lost interest in them and walked away.

Hey! I’m shooting you! Pay attention to me!” Sundance shouted.

Man, who knew going to visit Astralyn would result in mass chaos?” Timmy asked, shooting at the now bored robots.

I should have known,” Sundance mumbled. Then he slapped his forehead. “Astralyn! Timmy, get in the car!” He ran back to the car and started it up. Timmy was barely able to hop in the car before Sundance sped off.

Where are we going?” Timmy asked. He looked behind them and saw that other S.P.A.C.E. agents were taking care of the robots they left behind. “What about the robots?”

Do you ever stop asking questions?” Sundance replied. “We’re going to check on Astralyn. If the robots returned, I bet it has something to do with that book.”

————

Astralyn and Kjartan heard the noise of the giant space saucer above them and they instantly closed the metallic book.

Make it stop blinking,” Kjartan said, pushing the book in Astralyn’s direction.

What makes you think I know anything about how this book works?” Astralyn replied. She pushed it back in Kjartan’s direction. “You opened it, you figure it out!”

I’m just an intern!”

A loud thump sounded from above them. Astralyn looked out the window and saw robots floating down from the sky. They were amassing in front of the museum. One of the robots looked her way and she instantly shut the curtain.

They know we’re here,” Astralyn said. Kjartan was still looking at the blinking light and silently panicking. “We need to either get out of here or hide.”

Maybe if we just give them the book, they’ll take it and leave us alone.”

They’re a group of nomadic, carnivorous robots,” Astralyn said. “I don’t think they’re just going to call it a day. Come on!”

Astralyn grabbed Kjartan and pulled him out of the office. They traveled in the shadows to the back of the building. They stopped when they heard thumping and then a buzzing noise on the roof.

What is that?” Kjartan asked.

It’s our cue to shut up and hide.” Astralyn led them to the door to the basement near the back of the building. There was a code needed to open the door. She punched a five digit passcode and the door clicked open. She pushed Kjartan inside and shut the door behind her.

Kjartan turned on a light, but Astralyn quickly turned it off. “No lights!”

They sat in the dark and listened to the sounds of the robots breaking into the museum. Astralyn tried not to think about the amount of cleanup and paperwork she’ll have to do after this adventure.

Astralyn backed away from the door and stared at the thin slice of light at the bottom. The light shifted as the robots’ feet neared the door. She and Kjartan jumped as the door handle jiggled. The door remained closed. Everything went quiet. Astralyn continued to hold her breath. Did it get bored and leave? Astralyn checked the light at the bottom of the door. The dark spot gave way to light. Kjartan and Astralyn let out a collective sigh. Then a fist punched through the door.

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Posted March 29, 2011 by Xanto P. Jones in Flash Fiction

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