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Stockbridge Failsafe

There are those who think that war is the most glorious thing on the planet. There are those who see it as being worse than hell. Then there are those who see it as an ugly necessity. Then there’s me.

Currently, lying in the dirt and mud after fighting angels, I look to my arm, clenched around a syringe that holds a dose of Crystal Insanity. Never understood that name. Now, I look down, and attempt to get up. It’s painful, since the angels did a number on me. Some are still around, attempting to finish off those of us who attacked. As I find my rifle, I take aim; my nearest ally is being attacked by an angel wielding two scimitars. Snipe the wings. He falls in agony, giving my ally time to finish him off. As I sneak around the town we’re trapped in, I check my backpack for demolition charges. I’m in luck.

Crossing around the broken school we’re fighting in, two female angels-valkyries if I recall, come charging at me. One holds a normal sword, another holds twin daggers. Most would fall at their looks or their voices. I am neither. I dart behind a wall; my goal lay farther ahead. As they get near me, I use the sickle welded to my rifle to hook the swordswoman’s jaw and swing her into the wall. Darting away, I whip it back around and shoot her until she stops twitching. Then my back is on fire, and my ears are bleeding. The other must have stabbed me and is now singing. A siren’s call of doom? Unlikely. I turn, painful as it is, and punch the offending woman in the face. My group, about thirty when the combat started, has fallen to twenty. Now, I aim my rifle, and deliberately let my gaze wander.

She smirked, thinking I’m getting distracted. Far from it, I’m afraid. I fire, and she gasps. Apparently she didn’t register fighting an opponent with so little honor that he considers it dead. As she falls, I stand beside her.
“So, what’re you going to do now, Mortal man?” She sneers at me. “Going to take me as prisoner for your twisted amusement?”
I simple glare at her, sickle in hand.
“No, I’m not taking prisoners. Only trophies such as your wings.”
She pales, and I swing. She gasps, and finds she is still alive.
“What… what are you going to do to me? If I’m of no use to you dead, then what use am I alive?”
I smile, and drag her off to my superior, letting her imagination run wild. She was shrieking by the time I reached our camp. We had made it in the Gymnasium. Currently, our main bunk room/medical bay was in the actual Gymnasium, while our tactical command and armory were in schoolrooms attached to the building. After throwing my prisoner to the wolves to deal with, I went back to slogging my way to the bridge we were meant to sabotage.

Upon reaching the cafeteria, I saw that the mural on it had been demolished. Not too big a shock for me (always found it silly), but kinda depressing. Still, now I had to get to the bridge by cutting through some apartments and stores. The Angels and their lackeys were mounting a counterattack, trying to keep us from the bridge. Shame me hometown fell into this madness, but then again, it was a cultural dead zone. Upon seeing the attackers move up the street, I figured I needed to use the Crystal Insanity. Upon injecting it, I fell. This was the downside; you had to go to hell and get permission to use the powers before you can actually effectively control it.

“Hello dear, trying to turn tides again?”
I looked up. Of course, the demoness (never asked what kind out of politeness) that I had met before was staring at me. I had saved her in an earlier battle, and she offered me safe zones when she felt like it. Tsundere loonie. Getting up, she started pacing around me, wings flaring in irritation.
“Crystal Insanity? Are you nuts!? Last time you used it, it almost got you stuck in this realm! Unlike some of the other demons, I find you’re better suited for our goals back on terra!”
I glared at her. Her wings twitched and threatened to skewer me.
“I need to use the powers to rout the angels and their savants. If there are consequences, I accept them without reservation. It is better to throw oneself to the void before looking.”
She glared at me, evidently annoyed by my willingness to charge headlong into oblivion.
“Fine. I’ll let you use the power. This time, but after the battle, I’ll summon you. Then you’ll have to do what I say for a full twenty-four hours, no complaints. Deal?”
“Deal, enjoy your day my fair lady.” As my consciousness fled to my body, I heard her yell “And stop calling me that!”

Upon returning to my body, I was surrounded by angels, and their dweebos. I stretch, and as they take aim, I slam my fist to the ground, the Crystal Insanity in my veins forcing itself into the ground and causing the crystals to pop up all over, and impale many unlucky enough and unable to escape. As they fell, I noticed that I had gotten several angels, both genders, and many a follower. I connected to the demoness.
Hey, got some angels skewered, methinks you should come and get ‘em. Y’know, for your ‘amusement’?
Noted. My boss’ll love these new toys. We’re still on for that day of servitude by the way.
Wouldn’t try to escape it for the world darlin’.
The fallen followers were now walking around aimlessly, tied to my will. I directed them to cross the train tracks under the bridge and fight their once-allies. I made my way to the bridge, to simply raise some hell; there was a train on the way and we needed to make it crash. Upon planting the first charges, I realized I had to be on the bridge. Smart. Upon walking around and getting on the bridge, planting three were easy; the enemy wasn’t shooting at me. The other three would be problematic. Making a shield using the Insanity Crystals, I went on my way to sabotaging the bridge. With only two of the charger attached on the second side. I went running back across. Upon reaching my side, I found the demoness staring at me.
“Finished the Job?”
“You betcha.” I tossed her the detonator. “Want the honors? I just want to see the wreck.”
She smiled, and activated the detonator. The bridge fell, and crushed the tracks, as well as several of the angel’s followers. We heard a horn. The train was very near, and the battle decided.
“Well, moment of truth, what was it carrying?”
“Oh, just several key armaments and holy items. I expect them to be destroyed in the wreck. You really are one of our best mortal agents.”
“Glad to hear it ma’am.”

The train came around the curve, and slammed on the brakes. It was too late, and as it crashed and burned, she and I smiled.

“Now, for that day?”
“Yes mistress. My broken body should be able to handle it this time.”

-fin



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ElizabethWaldie This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Jan. 21, 2012 at 11:43 am
Nicely done, but I noticed that you switched back and forth between present tense and past tense. You should try to keep that consistent. However, I liked the story :)
 
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