Saturday, March 12, 2016

Short Story serial: Science Fiction tale Part Two

Last week I posted part one of this adventure on my blog and so here is part two

It's an old story and I have revised-revising each part just before I post it. It needed a lot of work. That including deleting a lot of stuff and rewriting sections and sentences and moving sentences.
This part is 2,257 words
Still not as I hoped it would be but it is a lot more readable than it was.

So anyway here is Part Two:

They zipped past ship and hull pieces, which had been cut out by lasers and other concentrated energy beams, that were larger than Jonathan’s main freighter. They could see that smaller ships involved had been involved in the battle also. Over there was a smaller red and green scout size ship that had smacked bow first into a large chunk of something. The whole unit drifted faster than the other pieces and spun. The something had been a ship before its power plant blew. Now only its bow remained with twisted and jagged edges on one end. The bow was still two and a half times bigger then the scout. The scout had a series of holes in it all the same size, probably blasted into it after the crash. 
      Mantee mumbled something about the pilots over there were good, for their still followed them. Along the way Jonathan said they needed a few seconds in the clear so they could change places. Mantee knew that would be difficult in this small cockpit. The chaser were too close: it would leave them without a pilot for too long.  
    He shook his head, wiped sweat off of his forehead, wished for some gum to keep his dry mouth refreshed. The Sansiburg frizzy gum would be good for that.
    When he dipped the Ant sideways-to him-he thought he smelled something burning. He realized it must be his imagination when he flew them past a ship engulfed inflames, its life support had to be still functioning. He must have seen it through the corner of his eye or on the sensor screen.
    Mantiee zagged back and forth to escape from their pursuers. Jonathan made suggestions: go through a hole where a hanger door had been turn around in the hanger bay then back the way they came.
    It took longer for him to thread his way through the hanger because of what might have been assault shuttles still in their cradles, two hung loose on tethers. They were hard to see in the dark cavern. Which meant they were stealth shuttles.  
     Once back outside Jonathan said, “And you wonder why I don’t want to get on that vital roller coaster you have been trying to get me on. If we survive this that roller coaster would be tame.”
     Mantiee said, “If we don’t survive this your wife will kill me.”
     Jonathan just stared at his friend with an incredulous look on his face.
     They continued on their course for another minute or so. They zoomed over a shattered vessel then dipped suddenly going though what had been a flight deck on a carrier of some type.
     Jonathan took a closer look at his display and said, “I was right there is a shark back there. As well as at least three spinners.”
     Mantiee asked, “What’s a shark doing so far this far north on the galactic compass? Aren’t they mainly used by the Tech Terrorists?”
     “As you said mainly used by them. Some of the groups that raid in our sector have gotten hold of a few,” Jonathan said, then added, “Just before we past out of these fragments head up.”
     Mantiee said, “But that is not a clear way. It is though a tight debris field.”
     “Just do it. Even our shields can block those pieces...Now!”
     Mantiee hands flew over the controls and the little runabout suddenly peeled off headed upward and to one side. It quickly went though the opening and into the mini debris field. Jonathan adjusted the power settings. Small and tiny pieces of what had been military ships with thousands of beings on board hit the shields ricocheting away or were pushed out of the way when hit by the shields.
     Jonathan made some minute adjustments to three controls, said, “That will increase the strength of the shields for a little while. That should take care of the smaller pieces. You will still need to miss the larger pieces however,” pointing forward.
      Mantiee saw that they were headed straight at a rather larger piece of twisted metal. It looked like space armor that had been hit by a solar tornado of Epsilon Tenny. 
     “I’ve never seen a piece of hull that twisted before. Obviously it had been part of another larger piece once but what that larger piece had been I can’t tell in the two or three-seconds we have.”
      He said, “Epp,” and fingers flying over the controls.
      The runabout curved to one side just missing the piece. He thought he could reach put of the top of the Ant and snag one of a tiny wedge. He thought it had been military green but a color that could be freeze dried blood decorated the inside of it. Then they were out of the closely packed small wreckage. Jonathan instructed him to continue along the hull they were now above, then down its other side. Mantiee did as instructed and as they reached the bottom Jonathan said to go under its stern then up the other side. Mantiee did that and as they came up on the other side they saw a spinner right in front of them. 
     A spinner, even though shaped pretty much like a top, did not spin as their name implies. They are small only about four times the size of the runabout and very maneuverable. 
     “Damn,” Mantee said! At the same moment he heard a second one.
     “Those things can pivot back and forth very fast. Most are armed with two sizes of lasers as well as small gamma plasma cannons. It may have been outfitted with mini-missiles.”
    The one now in front of them had been last in line of the ships chasing them. They had come at it from the rear and Mantee could see the large double hatch. This would be where the pirates would load the goods they capture. The ship looked matte black with white lines that suggested speed. Mantee, however also saw that this one had two larger lasers, one on each side. His head jerked up to look at the two small double lasers on the rear of the upper tapered section. It probably had two in the front also.
    Mantee had noticed that Jonathan had already activated the targeting computer back when they chase started. When he cleared the edge of the wrecked ship targeting brackets appeared on the view window. The second a bracket touched the spinner, even before the spinner was within the target circle he fired the blasters. 
    If the energy streaks were slow enough to be seen, one would see glowing yellow globes with what looked like electrical arcs shooting around on their outside surfaces. These blaster bolts were charged with an ion charge which gave them an extra twenty-one percent more oomph as they impacted. The ion charge would also interact with a shield, weakening it. Mantee hook his head those blasters barely have been even noticed by one of the warships they were weaving around. At least these guys were in smaller ships.
     Three shots hit the spinner’s shields while the fourth one went on by to impact the side of the wreck they were speeding by. Even as they hit Jonathan pressed the blasters again. He could see small arcs of the ion charges spreading out in small circles as the target’s shields absorbed the force of the blaster hits. Jonathan must have seen the same thing Mantee noticed; the rear guns on the other ship start tracking toward them, for he quickly hit the button to launch an asteroid clearer then fired the laser and grassers. 
    The clearers were small rockets tipped with explosive charges. They were to clear any asteroids in the path of a small craft like the runabout. Some used them, as Jonathan was about to, as weapons. 
    All four streams of deadly light from their weapons hit the target. The rocket hit the other ship, in the same area the second set of blaster energy had hit. The light beams hit. A section of the spinner’s shields glowed then “popped” as it went down. As weak as they were the lasers and grassers still cut into the target’s hull. Jonathan most have hit something important, Mantiee thought, for seconds later something in an upper section blew out. A small explosion but it looked like something important for the spinner went spun away to starboard.
     “So,“ Mantee said, “they can spin after all.”
      As he had been firing the last round Jonathan had ordered 
Mantiee to dive under the spinner and the wrecked ship. Mantiee 
did as instructed and as the runabout came out on the other side his friend had him go up the side of the hulk and though the mini debris field again. This time they came out, what to their orientation, was the top of the whole field and leveled off. Of course it wasn’t a flat top but there was a definite place were the wreckage ended. They zipped along side two or three ships that had been cut into pieces.  Glancing at the sensors Jonathan noticed, that even though the other two spinners had turned back to check out the battle scene, the shark was arrowing toward them.
     Mantiee asked, “What do those guys want anyway?”
     Jonathan said, “I don’t know but I think they want to take us and not kill us. They could have blasted us by now if that's all they wanted.”
     “So they want to capture us or our cargo.”
     “I would think so.”
     “Again I say what do those guys want?”
     “It could be the peace plans for the Herche accords we are carrying or it could be that Jewel we have back there.”
     “Yes, but no one is supposed to know we have either.”
     “You know how secrets can slip though the cracks.”
     “Of course I do but these were kept very top secret.”
     Jonathan just shrugged and said, “Evidently someone discovered something: a spy among them or someone was offered enough money to buy him or her.”
     Seconds later Jonathan spoke up again, “Go though that opening over there I see something we can use.”
     Mantiee nodded and sharply curved to port. He went down though an opening, in the side of a battleship, that had been cratered by a rather large blast. He steered the runabout around 
the splintered decking and titled it sideways. An opening appeared and he next threaded the runabout though an open hatch and down a very large passageway. Green stripes decorated the bulkheads along with what could be orange blood sprayed here and there. Of course it could also some form of sign the alien crew would know.
    After a few seconds opened into a landing bay. They zoomed though the bay and between partially opened bay doors. Both caught glimpses of runabouts, something that may have been a fighter and floating alien bodies. Once out the doors Mantiee saw what Jonathan was talking about. There were a dozen or so floating balls of energy. They looked pretty much like huge soap bubbles of the type children create with toys, however when these popped a sizable explosion followed. The explosion was somehow storied in the bubble and was released when the bubble broke. They were used primarily by an alien race called the Zoonus. All of the Zoonu warcraft most of which were flat looking had what looked like scoops sticking out from under the bow of the ship. These were its main weapons even though they also had lasers as well as massers and grassers. The energy balls would shot out from the end of the scoop. Sometimes an egg shaped missile they liked to use would join the bubbles. The missiles had a drive on them and some ability to avoid antimissile fire. The globes however had no drives nor ability to change directions. They just shot out of the tubes and drifted toward their target. They moved pretty fast however for they looked more like a bunch of soap bubbles floating out of a child’s bubble pipe. The bubbles were all the same size even though the missiles came in two sizes. Some of the bigger Zoonu ships were also armed with smaller tubes on their sides usually toward the back. 
      Mantiee calmed a bit for the bubbles had no way to change direction many would miss if the target ship moved. Which was why there were usually energy globes floating around after a battle involving the Zoonus, sometimes a lot of them. There seemed to be a lot less then usual at this site.
      Once out of the bay they headed toward one group of the globes. On the way Mantee had to dodge various pieces of large debris. Half way though them though Mantiee saw something on his pilot screen.
      He asked, “When did you turn on the tractor beam?”
      Jonathan who had seen the same thing said, “I didn’t turn it on, I thought you did.”
      Mantiee swallowed hard as his mouth became dry, said, “If you did not and I did not turn it on then how come that Zoonus bubble is following us?”
      “I don’t know. Those things don’t have drives so they can’t move by themselves. If it was a tractor beam my sensors would detect it.”
      “Don’t tell me tell that thing behind us. It is getting closer.”
      “Try speeding up.”

      A few seconds later, sweating dripping off of his forehead Mantiee said, “I did and it's still getting closer.”

End Two

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