The Spirit Crusher
by Wedge, Co-Creator
“Hock, taking all known variables into account I estimate that you will be dead in the next 90 seconds,” said a chromatic monotone voice inside of Hock’s left inner ear.
“At least I can take comfort knowing that you will soon be haunting someone else Spirit Crusher,” replied Hock sub-vocally.
A cold tingling radiated through Hock’s fingers and toes letting him know that the second adrenal stim was beginning to wear off… either that or an errant round may have penetrated his armor and he was slowly bleeding out. Either way, the Spirit Crusher’s predictions were infuriatingly accurate which meant there was nothing left to do but roll the dice.
Hock snapped off the scope, brought up the holographic range finder, and toggled the rifle’s firing mechanism to full-auto – there was only be enough power left for one shot at this. Ejecting the tactical knife from his gauntlet Hock ran the blade over his exposed knuckle drawing a long line of blood across the blade. Good old fashioned pain works just as good as any stim. Riding the surge of awareness Hock tossed the blade over his left shoulder rolling out from behind the wrecked land rover to his right.
Immediate interception fire turned the bloody tactical knife to slag while Hock rolled to his knee and opened fire on the two SERK Trackers closing in on his position. The white hot plasma raked through each one in turn before their DNA targeting systems could change to Hock’s position and each one fell just as the familiar voice intoned “Ammunition Expended.”
A grin cracked the side of Hock’s face and he began to stand up when a dark shadow fell over his vision.
Instinctively he brought his rifle up into a two handed parry just in time to catch the double scythe blades of the SERK Butcher which bit deep into his battered weapon. Collapsing under the tremendous weight of the robot Hock twisted his body backwards sending the bulk of his attacker over his head. Wrenching the rifle vertical Hock came down on top of the SERK putting all of his weight into the butt of the weapon which landed square in the side of the robot’s head. Metal crumpled and sparks flew from the crater in the robots skull sending spasms through its body. Hock hammered the would-be assailant 8 or 10 more times with the rifle just for good measure and collapsed.
“Metal fatigue” said the metallic voice, “that was unexpected.”
“I guess this hunk of metal had been recycled one too many times,” said Hock.
“I expect you to fix the damage to my frame, I’m not designed to be wielded like a club”
“Try not to sound too broken up about me making it through this one Spirit Crusher.”
“Why do you persist in calling me that name?”
I wonder thought Hock.