Spacer Bloodlines 17
  | Asymmetry | Role-Playing | Villains & Vigilantes | The Revolution | Story So Far | Bloodlines |



In which Lucky does something she regrets, Needle gets a history lesson, and Phoenix gets to beat people up.



February 14, 1987

Happy damn Valentine's Day. Needless to say, I didn't get any mail.
    I took yesterday off by default—I slept through it. No one called with an emergency. This morning Newton woke me up by meowing very loudly in my face while standing on my chest. I fed him, had a much-needed shower, breakfast and so forth. Did some cleaning. The stack of papers and things Chandler and I had gone through was still on the coffee table. It took a while for me to get around to facing it, but finally I stuffed it all in a box and wrote EVIDENCE on the side in black marker. It felt concrete that way, as if I had actually done something meaningful. I put the box in the closet and headed for work, trying not to think too much.
    It was a beautiful day and bitterly cold; that painful sort of winter clarity highlighted everything after all the snow. I practiced aerial maneuvering and felt almost cheerful despite myself. It wasn't destined to last. People were moving around in the streets again through the drifts, getting on with their lives.
    And their crimes, apparently. A frightened cry reached my ears, and wild juvenile laughter. When I dropped down for a closer look I found three punkish youths on rocket-outfitted skateboards circling a pair of older women. More annoyed than anything else, I reached down and tripped one of them. He flew into a snowbank with no harm to anything but his ego as his companions turned their mirth on him, but they quickly sobered when he pointed me out.
    "Why don't you boys go play somewhere else?" I suggested.
    "Hey, c'mon, we can take her!" one of them spoke up, but the others were already on their way, and he soon followed on his rocket board. Where do they get these things?
    "You ladies all right?" I asked, coming to a hover a little way above the ground.
    "Yes, thank you."
    "You should have hurt the little punks," the other one chimed in, and got a sharp elbow in the ribs for her trouble.
    "Why don't you get on inside, citizens," I suggested as pleasantly as I could manage, and continued on my way to base. Phoenix was bouncing around like a terrier on speed because his package from Sterling, that LA agent, got here. Distinct stars were visible in his eyes.
    I looked at his boxer-clad form and rolled my eyes. "Dear God, please get dressed."
    "Haven't had your coffee yet, have you?" he grinned.
    "No, as a matter of fact." I went to make some and then, not without some trepidation, put in a call to Reilly. We exchanged commiserations about the siege just ended, and then I asked, "Is this a secure line?"
    "Good. What can you tell about Officer Matthews?"
    Pause. "Why?"
    "Because now that Fimbulwinter's out of the way, I'd like to find out what the hell is going on."
    "Fair enough," he agreed. "I've been doing a little work on that, actually, got some stuff put together. Been nothing but paperwork for more than twenty-four hours, I could use a break. Wife's probably forgotten what I look like. How 'bout I bring it out there?"
    "Great. See you soon."
    A while later the door buzzed. Still working on the coffee, I glanced at the security screen. It was the punks I had encountered earlier. I pressed the intercom.
    "What do you want?"
    "Uh. Hi. Is Needle there?"
    "Who wants to know?"
    "We're the Blood Boards," another spoke up proudly. "We gotta talk to her."
    "Speaking. What do you want to talk about?"
    "We need to talk face to face."
    I sighed. "Guys, how dumb do you think I am? Go away before I have to hurt you." They departed with muttered threats about incurring the wrath of the Blood Boards, and I shook my head sadly at the decline of American youth.
    "Who was that?" Phoenix wanted to know.
    "Some gang with rocket boards. I ran into them this morning."
    "Really? Me too, at the video store. They smashed the place up. Had funny guns."
    I shrugged. Two-bit hoodlums, even if they did have fancy equipment, were not likely to excite my interest after Gretchen and Fimbulwinter.
    While I was waiting for Reilly I wandered up to Lucky's room and knocked.
    "Hey. Got a minute?"

| Top | Previous Page Next Page


© 1999 Rebecca J. Stevenson