Trials of the Cybermancer! – Chapter 22: Retrofuture Team-Up

“Dad!” Kobi shouts, running out from behind me and towards his father.

“It’s nothing. I’ve been through worse,” he says, getting back up. “Not least of which is getting trampled by this asshole!”

“Dad, don’t say bad words.”

“Sorry.”

More robots attack him, and he activates his Power Glove, pushing one back with supersonic energy waves and then smacking the other one in the face, disabling it with a micro-EMP blast. He jumps backwards, almost levitating with how smoothly he moves, and shoots a ring-shaped beam that electrocutes two more.

A robot in the kitchenette advances towards Kobi and me, but with one crunch of his fist, Moonslash flashes the microwave at max power for no more than a couple of seconds. The machine breaks and makes a small sparking explosion, but the magnetic waves fry the robot’s internal circuitry and it crashes its head onto the countertop. It took nothing more than a single motion to accomplish, and he’s already turned his gaze to other foes.

The way he fights is elegant– he presses a few buttons on his glove with one rapid motion, switching between modes of attack almost instantly to counter any situation. He’s a hardened combat veteran, able to utilize everything around him as a potential weapon.

This would be a very fun video game to play.

I kick one robot backwards, and it stumbles and falls on the ground. Kobi takes a baseball bat off of the fan-turned-weapon and hits the robot on the floor a few times. It gets up and pushes him off.

“Why are they attacking you too?” I ask.

“I think–” The disabled robot gets back up and he hits it down again. “–I messed up when I reprogrammed all these robots. It was in a fit of rage the day after you foiled my plan, and.. I wasn’t thinking clearly.”

“Clearly.”

He shoots another, smaller laser at a robot– it misses and hits the TV behind it, and the TV’s cracked glass sprays out across the floor. Good thing we’re all wearing shoes.

“They are responding to the fact you’re here, but now that they’re in attack mode they won’t revert until they’ve neutralized the threat… but I don’t think I defined you AS that threat, so their processors are just–” He switches to a new mode and his power glove briefly sparks an energy shield that blocks a robot’s attack. “–confused.”

Damn. I was not aware that energy shields that small could exist in real life. Why is he a criminal and not an inventor?

There’s still six, maybe eight, maybe nine left–

This is too much. And this apartment’s getting utterly wrecked in the process.

A robot starts chasing Kobi and he flees back through the closet entrance and into the other apartment. Ah crap, the rest start following suit.

“Your son is a threat to them?!”

“He ran, and that’s good enough for them, I guess.”

We chase the robots back into the other apartment. They’ve already started trashing up the place, crashing into tables and knocking dishes onto the floor. Kobi is in the kitchenette, holding up a butter knife as a robot advances towards him.

“Drop the knife, Kobi!” Moonslash shouts. “It’s going to attack you unless you show–”

Nope, not enough time. I see the robots approaching Kobi from the other side, ready to pounce once they’ve cornered him from all directions.

I’m not letting this stand– So I launch myself.

I jump forward at as powerful a speed as I can muster, possibly ripping the carpet underneath myself in the process.

Everything moves in slow motion and I give my eyes enough time to react to everything that’s about to happen. If I mess up, this isn’t going to go well.

So–

I land on Kobi, knocking him to the ground and rolling on top of him– the butterknife flies out of his hand and clangs against the tile on the floor– just as the robots start swiping at his previous location. They quickly adjust their position and pummel me in the back, but.. I can take it–

Agh–

Yep, I can–

“Roll away and get out of here,” I mutter to Kobi.

He nods his head and complies. He runs into his bedroom and locks the door. That won’t hold for long but it’ll hold for long enough.

Once he’s out of immediate harm’s way, I flip around on my back and kick one of them in the legs, pushing it down and knocking two more behind it over like dominos.

Moonslash uses his power glove and oversurges two more just like he did DODF the other day. Their heads, too, explode.

I get back up, wobbling a bit, but with my scrappy nature I’m still in this.

Moonslash nods, and so do I. We don’t speak.

I wish I had some special chakras to unlock and do some super cool finishing moves where I press my palm against a robot and then it explodes, or I summon the energy to pick one of them up and deliver a piledriver, but sadly, I mostly just run in circles to confuse them and then kick them.

On an exciting note, I do kick one hard enough to push it out the window, broken glass flying everywhere onto the first floor and making for a very unexciting cleanup effort later on by some unlucky soul.

Moonslash’s Power Glove works wonders.

He shoots a beam of light, the same one he used on me, and it pushes a robot back into a wall, knocking it down onto the ground. Then, with a skillet from the kitchenette, he bashes its head in until it no longer functions.

That’s… about it. We finish the robots off.

There’s police sirens in the distance, growing louder as each moment passes.

Kobi emerges from his bedroom and looks at his father.

“Is it over?” he asks.

“For me, yes,” Moonslash answers.

“What do you mean?” I ask.

“I’m giving myself up to the police,” he says. “I realized in this fight… all of this was my doing. My crimes, my anger, my mistakes. I almost got my own son seriously hurt just because I wanted to torment you. I’m not willing to do that anymore.”

“I’m sorry,” I say. “I just–”

“You did nothing wrong,” he says with an air of certainty.

I mean, I broke into your house, but I guess it was justified because of the circumstances? Does that hold up in a court of law?

“I’m so sorry,” he says to his son, hugging him. “I’m sorry for everything.”

“It’s okay.”

He turns back to me. “Take care of him.”

Uhh… “Yes, uh, Moonslash.”

“Max,” he says. “My name is Max.”

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7 comments

  1. WHOOPS There’s been no “next chapter” link on here for like two months. No wonder the next chapter is the lowest-viewed in all of ATL….

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