Week 15: Mural Abstractionism [Unedited]
The Deew might have been the offspring of another mother, but this project was still Janette's baby. Whether her managerial experience or those metaphorical maternal instincts received the credit for the uneasy feeling that she now felt - was irrelevant. Something was not right, and this elevator ride could not end soon enough for the botanist to be able to figure out what exactly that something happened to be.
Gauntlet technology was wonderful - Boyd thought while his body doubled as a wrecking ball, wishing that he could have used a stand-in in actuality. Too many more of these hits, and he was dead though. Burdlit was quite powerful to be able to dish out such punishment, but the reverse could also be said of himself for having withstood (hopefully) the brunt of it. This head-first tumble and the demolition which the Enforcer witnessed from its unenviable vantage point became the fodder for a wake-up call that smelling salts could not possibly fathom: The operational general might not be amenable to being taken alive and quite a few of these Galaxy Bloc troops might also need to be killed. Neither scenario was the preferred tact, but neither party to his concern seemed to be too worried about his particular health during the seriousness of their very real attempts to eliminate him.
Boyd put his left hand behind his head to powerfully halt the momentum of this treacherous skid through midair into a physics-defying stop and its resultant kip from his shoulder blades on back up to a standing position. Lasers - some errant and others dead-on, pelted him but were easily deflected toward oblivion with the continued focusing of his life force energy through the combat gear to create its personal shield. He had hoped to hold out long enough for Janette to arrive, but the soldiers were not cooperating, and Burdlit seemed to be thoroughly opposed to the notion. Showing the lot of them how the Enforcer felt on the subject, he fired a series of spiteful laser pulses in the reverse direction that he had just been hurled in order to let everybody know that he was very much alive and still well enough to almost graze the operational general's head from a distance!
"Burdlit," Janette reestablished a feed on her Ear-To-Mouth Com in order to check, "what is your status?" Things had been mighty quiet from the operational general's end as of late with regards to updates. The regularity seemed to just drop off. The communication all but dried up. True, there was no getting a signal in or within Inner Corridor, but she was hoping that he would have contacted her prior to moving into there and/or engaging with the intruder.
In disbelief of his own astonished eyes, Burdlit twirled out the way of the intruder's retaliation before the attempt had a chance to hit him right between those wide-eyed targets. While doing so, his physicality wilted away into the elusive transparency state of how he started off this match. The technique was risky because any third-party accessories which were not native to his body like the laser rifle could not be camouflaged, so the operational general happened to be engaging in this skirmish unarmed. It did not mean that he brought no weapons along with him, but the original idea was that the inherent kind would and should have sufficed!
The intruder was really starting to get under Burdlit's concealable skin - successfully evading an army and defiantly engaging in this mayhem as an individual. Determined? Maybe crazed? Augmented by nanites perhaps? This Human could not have been...Human. They simply were not built that way: No fear, no remorse, and no quit. A cooler head should have prevailed, but he had been around them for so long that their stubbornness was beginning to rub off on him.
Janette was going to kill Burdlit. She knew his moves, and he knew better.
And really, Boyd had all day, no particular place to be at the moment, and a dogged killer instinct to go along with his own allotment of battle skills. He was somewhat determined since the success of this mission was of a paramount importance to the overall Space Force effort as a whole. Pulling off crazy moves like solo infiltration happened to be, itself, a part of the strategy to keep the home team off balance. But nanites had nothing to do with this. It was merely Grade A grit which had been honed to a fine composure that only seemed supernatural.
It was what kept a scouted opponent like Burdlit so off balance - leaning into a fascination about an allure which appeared to be made out of a wildly atypical Human. Boyd preyed upon Carriveaua prejudices by playing against those same preconceived notions with unpleasant surprises. At this moment, the operational general could no more stop himself from proceeding than could he resist the yearn to uncover what awaited him: Compelled and propelled.
Boyd's Ear-To-Mouth Com emitted a sonar-like ping with an increasing, repetitious frequency.
Thinking that he had managed to be successful in shirking the intruder's sense of assailment by negotiating the carnage of the office floor during invisibility in order to come up from the side, Burdlit was stunned both physically and psychologically when he found himself to be the recipient of a perfectly-placed left fist to the cheek - himself, the one caught by surprise. The scaly covering as well as its coloring returned to his skin with the newfound inability to concentrate as he staggered backward, stumbling across his feet and reeling as much if not more from consternation than pain.
Also paired with the minicomputer, Boyd's Ear-To-Mouth Com became an audible source of warning for him regarding Burdlit's whereabouts especially during the use of that Carriveaua advantage on stealth. The computer did not fall for lighting tricks from advanced skin pigmentation when biometrics was its bar. Simply albeit cleverly put, it was what happened to be on the inside which counted for the device - a lesson that the Enforcer's racist opponent would soon start to realize.
With time presenting itself for Boyd to bring the fight in close, he hopped over Burdlit's always lethal tail which had swept viciously at his lower body and proceeded to deliver a sweep kick of his own to the operational general's wobbly, crisscrossing legs. The Enforcer then aimed his LUNC at the temple of his formerly towering opponent to halt the action.
Even from his knees, Burdlit could have still managed to dispatch the intruder as seen by his instinctive tail curling around to reposition its pointy end for a potential kill shot - hovering inches from the back of the Human's head. The match now became a stalemate.
But the rules of Chess did not apply. Time was on Boyd's side, so with each passing moment of it, Janette would have gotten closer in proximity and closer to hearing the Space Force's side of this story. Much to the dismay of the Galaxy Bloc troops in the area who were prevented from assisting Burdlit for fear of the standoff tipping in the wrong direction, the Enforcer held the edge in advantage.
But for how long - the Deew sought to innocently question as a vine-like series of petioles protruded outward from the near microscopic crack in the containment of the vegetational crevice to a draped position on the inside of Inner Corridor. Its lush foliage brushed gently across the ground, similar to how long hair might tickle the tops of shoulders.
The uncanny occurrence had caught and drawn the attention of every soldier in the area because the botanical outgrowth seemed to be a lot larger than any visible breach would have allowed for. And to them, they saw none. All that the visual showed was a portrait of the Deew having grown seemingly through the window. It was as precious a vista as any for a last sight.
With screams and laser fire not emanating from the area that Boyd and Burdlit happened to be in, they each looked at one another from their frozen counterfighting stances which continued to invite the finality of a fatal first and last move. The Enforcer and the operational general then decided to put their animosity on hold through a case of mutualized empathy in order to peer over toward the direction of the commotion which they had not directly caused.
Indirectly...was a whole different story.
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