Chapter 9 – The Final Chapter of Volume I
The forest very strangely did not catch fire. The Necrospheres were to blame for the ice on the road and they engulfed the flames, grew to the size of tumbleweeds, and rolled towards us alight with the flames they were holding inside.
“I guess these guys have heard of the phrase ‘Fighting fire with fire.’” NFL said.
Looking back behind us, we now had a giant tarantula Spine Eater and no less than 7 big balls of fire filled Necrospheres chasing after us.
It did provide a little extra light though. Before I could react a bike dislodged from a tree branch overhanging the road and landed on the roof of the car. A big splash followed and small spheres formed on the windows.
NFL grabbed a fire extinguisher and cracked the window spraying as he did. The Necrospheres on his window didn’t like that. So he rolled the window down and began spraying the top of the car just before the pockets of liquid could finish drilling themselves through to us. The bike reformed and let the balls of fire catch up to it. They merged into one giant flaming ball, with the Spine Eater still crawling next to it and gave off enough light to see the tentacles from the spider begin to emerge.
“I think I’m going to need the air support a little early!” NFL shouted.
“What air support?” Cassandra said.
I floored it. I was not getting caught by that spider and getting out of the car to run on foot was not going to work this time. My heart pounded within me as the slow terror of actual death crept over me. The tentacles extended to the side of the car ready to slither around us. NFL rolled the window back up.
“That thing will crush us and shred the remains after.” I said.
And the last bike stood tall just ahead of us popping a wheelie. I crashed right into it as the Spine Eater wrapped its tentacles around the SUV lifting us into the air and reeling us in towards its enlarged mouth. I’d never seen the rotating black blades inside its mouth before. I’d never been close enough.
“It’s going to eat us whole.” Cassandra said as she tried to climb into the front seat. NFL followed suit and began kicking at the windshield. The bike I’d crashed into splashed all over the undercarriage of the car and the metal squeaked and squealed as it began to give way. NFL used the rocket launcher to break the glass and almost had it when a missile hit and blew us all into the air.
It took me a minute to come to from the landing. NFL was trying to wake up Cassandra, but the car had rolled onto her lower body, crushing her, and she was lying on the pavement unconscious. I was still strapped to the driver’s seat with powder from the airbag all over me.
“Come on!” he shouted and slapped her.
The whole world was on fire around us and the spider began advancing. I made my way out of the shattered windshield to find NFL holding a handgun. He shot Cassandra point blank in the head so she wouldn’t feel the pain of being eaten then ran ahead of me.
Although I was stunned I followed him. The blast muffled the sound in my ears, but I could feel the cool breeze of helicopter blades descending upon us. NFL grabbed a ladder that I could hardly see and extended his hand towards me.
I grabbed it and held onto the flimsy feeling ladder for dear life. As we lifted off I saw the spider crouched over Cassandra’s body and the splattering of her blood. It began chewing through her and the overturned SUV. The watery spheres gathered around the pool of blood from what was left of her and lapped up every last drop while the fiery sphere blew the fire from within onto the SUV to burn the evidence.
I was sad I had been such a jerk to her. After all, she did get me out of that military installation. But, at the same time, what is happening to her is the fate that awaits anyone who gets left behind here when the invasion begins.
“Damn shame.” NFL said. “I rather liked her as a familiar.”
“A what?” I asked perplexed.
“She was a Necro familiar and when you requested that she be killed with you, the aliens considered that request the terms of your surrender. You think you’ve been hunted so far? You haven’t seen anything yet because in the eyes of the Spine Eater, a deal is a deal.” He continued.
I found myself breathing hard trying to imagine staying alive being harder than it already was. I looked at him ruefully.
“Don’t worry. I’ll put a bullet in your head too if it comes down to that.” He said and motioned to the pilot what direction to take us in once we were a safe distance from our assailants.
It’s a strange feeling of comfort to know that someone will shoot you in the head rather than let you get eaten alive.
“How did the bikes find us?” I asked.
“I think they were looking for her the same way the spider looks for you. But, since I was with her…” he began.
“Are you a familiar?” I broke in.
“Nope. Not that it would help anything if I was. I mean, you saw what they did to her.” He answered.
“That sucks. She’s just as unimportant to her leaders as I am to mine.” I said.
“They work a little differently. See, when a body from this world gets destroyed she gets recalled back to her world in her true form, which is strikingly similar to humans. Just better and more durable in every way.” NFL went on to explain.
“Recalled?” I asked.
“They have a way to exchange their essence. Almost like moving their consciousness, but not just their consciousness their essence of being. When that body is lost on the world they are on, their essence returns to their real bodies at home. The Cassandra that we knew was grown from a test tube. The original owner of that DNA is about 90 years old in a rest home. They use clones of people that are so old only their families would recognize them now.” He said.
“This is bullshit.” I said.
“No kidding.” He chuckled.
I stared into the night sky and looked up at the stars wondering which one is the planet
attacking us. How long ago did this all start I wonder.
To be continued….
attacking us. How long ago did this all start I wonder.