Yes Ma’m, you were right, of course. There was a guy there, a wizard, sorcerer I guess you want us to call ‘em. Lucky you got that whole armory of weapons left over from the Great War. I was pretty nervous about the whole thing, my first mission. Cedric, Mr. Fong, let me check out two of the 12 gauges, thank God.
The people in the house looked normal, but they still tried to kill us. Had to put ‘em down. That was weird. We found a trap door under a large Oriental rug in the parlor.
The basement was huge, halls, rooms, all made of concrete. I sent Méndez to scout the overall area while the rest of us went room to room. I told him to be back in ten minutes.
The rooms had all kinds of strange stuff in them; chemical equipment, covered glass jars of internal organs, fetuses in jars of formaldehyde, it was crazy. Twenty minutes and Méndez wasn’t back, so I led the team to look for him.
Pretty soon there was a man’s voice, chanting or singing. We came around a corner and there he was, in a fancy suit and tie. He was talking to this thing.
It was horrible, huge. It looked like a giant, clear balloon full of water–with internal organs and people floating around in it. People! And they weren’t just floating, they were swimming! They were alive in there!
Sorry, sorry. It made me mad, real mad. Kowalski didn’t say a thing, just drew his knife and charged. He was stabbing and cutting at the guy, but it just sliced up his clothes. He didn’t even blink, just laughed. Then he said some stuff and moved his hands around, started making these cutting motions and laying Kowalski wide open, like he was holding an invisible sword. In about twenty seconds, Kowalski was dead on the floor in a pool of blood.
Fitzgerald, our wizard, sorcerer I mean, was breathing heavy and crying. I had to do something, and fast. I got in close to the thing and fired a 12 gauge. Didn’t do much, just punched a hole in it and something popped out, a kidney or heart or something. Just plugged the hole as far as I could tell. Another blast tore it open a little better, a couple dozen eyeballs dangled out, like a god-awful cluster of grapes.
Then the bad guy called out to the thing, “Now, the one I told you!” It opened a slit right in front of him, and a person slid out, like it was giving birth. It was Méndez! All covered in slime. He started walking to me, all shaky, asking me to run. Said he couldn’t control himself.
Fitzgerald got it together and started shouting out his weird magic words. The bad guy started screaming. His skin turned black and shriveled. He dropped, and I shifted away from Méndez, blasting the thing until I ran out of shells. Then I un-shouldered the other 12 gauge and kept shooting. Finally, all this thick, stinking water came gushing out of the thing and it sagged to the floor.
Méndez went back to normal, as normal as he is I mean. Fitzgerald got it together and we brought Kowalski’s body back here.—Benjamin Six, former U.S. Army Sergeant: Team Leader, Strike Team Three.Continue reading