The Hunter Part 9: Capture of the Hunter

Short intro. It’s late, I’m tired. Today’s story was a push. Check out the previous post for info on this story series.


Heavy footsteps clanked on the steps leading up to the bridge. Three men came through the doorway. Large. Human. Heavily armed.

Lena clutched the handle of her gun with a sweaty hand.

“You’re carrying cargo.” The man leading said, his voice deep, rough. it matched his appearance. Bearded. Scarred.

“Yes,” Lena said. She couldn’t deny it.

“Wine.”

“yes.”

“Valuable?”

“To us.”

He glanced at the two men behind him and grunted. They turned and left the bridge.

That was their cargo gone then.

“You three will come with us,” he said, then stood back indicating they were to walk before him.

“For what purpose?” Zinna asked, stepping up to Lena’s side.

Sharp eyes skewered her. “One that you will find out when you need to.”

Leo stood on her other. “Let’s just go,” he said. Just the right amount of despondency. As if he’d given up. Lena saw the fear in her eyes. Silently, she apologised to him, then led the way forward.

At the docking port, she stepped through into another world. The surfaces of the new ship were smooth. No cables showed, no gratings lined the floor, carpet instead muffled their footsteps. The walls were smooth, light-coloured, like painted walls in expensive houses. The doors slid open smoothly, without getting jammed. They shone silver.

“This is…” Leo breathed, staring up and down, ahead and behind.

Lena kept her eyes ahead. She would not be awed by this. Even though she was.

She elbowed Leo. “Stop it.” Voice low. A hiss.

He dropped his gaze.

The man with his gun at their backs told them where to go, which corners to turn and which to ignore. Lena remembered every turning. She counted them in her head. Left, right, right, right, left, right…

They were ushered into a small, dim room. “Wait here,” he said, and closed the door.

“They have you too, then.” Tang.

Relief. “You’re alive!”

“Yes.” A grim smile from the shadows of the back of the room. He was sat on a bench, hands clasped between his knees. “You were foolish to come after me.”

She folded her arms, hip cocked. “And some would say you were foolish to turn back and fight for us against them.”

“Yes,” he said again. “Some may say that.”

“I wouldn’t though,” Leo stepped forward. “I’d call it bravery, the actions of a hero.”

Tang’s expression said he didn’t agree.

“Regardless of what you’d call it,” Zinna said, “we’re here now, and we need to get out of this mess.”

No one argued.

She turned around, pulled a small gun from her boot and took aim at the door.

“I don’t think that’ll work,”Tang said.

Zinna gave him a sidelong glance. She wasn’t going to take his word for it.

She pulled the trigger. The sharp blue beam shot out at the door. A ripple spread out from the point of impact, like water resisting a blast of air.

“Hm.” Zinna shoved the gun back into her boot.

Leo approached the wall beside the door. “I think there’s an access panel here.” He ran his fingers over the smooth surface and then prised off a piece of the wall. Buttons and blinking lights flashed at them.

Lena watched him work, Tang’s eyes on her. Within moments the doors slid silently open.

Leo tried to hide the smug look his face. Zinna rolled her eyes, pulled her gun out again, and led the way out into the corridor, her body tense. It was clear every sense was alert to her surroundings.

Lena caught Tang on the way out. “Why did you stop for us?”

“Because I thought you might pay me for protection after all if I saved you from them.”

His eyes gave him away. “You’re a terrible liar, you know that?”

“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” he said, then crept out of the doorway.

Lena followed, smiling to herself despite everything.


Today’s prompt: A terrible liar.


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