Today is #BlogBattle day, hosted by Rachael Ritchey! Visit her website for the rules and do consider joining!
Today is the last of a three part series involving the singular Captain Frankie Baum and his mysterious passenger, Fyrn. I hope you’ve enjoyed the previous installments. 🙂 You can find last week’s HERE or catch up on the entire story HERE!
The word: Shenanigan
The Genre: Science Fiction
Frankie arranged the harness on the ground. The hunk of machinery stood about as tall as he did and he could just barely put his arms around it. The surface was a shimmery grey and perfectly smooth. After the straps were arranged, he stood back and looked it over, not sure how he was going to tip it into the harness. He reached out and tapped the surface. It echoed hollowly and whirred briefly under his touch.
“What are you?” he muttered. And what does Rathson want you for?
After a few minutes thought, he decided he’d just push it over.
“Hope you’re not heavy. Or breakable. Or explosive.”
He set his shoulder against it and was rewarded by a faint budge. He was close enough to the wall to set his back against the stone and shove with his feet. It slowly tipped and fell. The cave echoed with a dull thud!
“What was that?” Rathson demanded across the comms.
“Me, trying to move your semi-precious hunk of machinery.”
“You’d better not have broken it.”
“Well you should have thought of that before you sent me in alone.”
“Just be careful. Ship’s on its way.”
Frankie tossed straps over the cylinder and started tightening them. Hopefully the sound hadn’t alerted the Derchs. He really didn’t want to deal with the nocturnal, highly aggressive and territorial, intelligent primates.
Frankie picked up the pace, tightening the last strap as the sound of the helicarrier broke over the cave. Two ropes lazily fell from the carrier and into the cave. Frankie caught one and undid the catch.
“Hey, Rathson. If anyone comes down that rope I’ll flip the jammer switch.”
“Come on, Frankie, you don’t trust us?”
“Nope. This reminds me of your old shenanigans. I’m not getting left in this cave.”
“I don’t think you actually would flip that switch.”
“Oh, really?” Frankie pulled out the jammer and flipped if off and then back on. The helicarrier made a pained nose and then its engines hummed again. “Sorry, my finger slipped.”
“Frankie!” Rathson swore.
Frankie chuckled as he secured the second rope and hauled himself on top of the machinery.
“OK, good to go down here. And I’d be careful if anyone tried to shoot me or my finger might slip again.”
“Point taken.” Rathson growled.
The helicarrier pilot took over comms, alerting him to the beginning ascent. Frankie straddled it more comfortably and hooked his hand into the straps as they slowly gained altitude and soared over the treetops back to base. The carrier hovered as an underground container opened, and slowly lowered down. Frankie jumped off when he was close enough to the ground.
Once the object settled on the ground, the ropes were disengaged from the carrier and the container slid shut.
“I knew you still had it in you.” Rathson approached as Frankie pulled off his helmet.
“I’m blushing. We’re square, right?”
“Completely.” Rathson smiled.
Frankie noted the closing proximity of the guards and took that moment to draw the knife he had moved from an ankle sheath to his sleeve during the flight back. He lunged towards Rathson, spinning him around and pressed the knife into his back. Rathson spread his arms in the air and the F.R.O.G.s stepped back.
“Where’s my passenger?” Frankie asked.
“Coming,” Rathson growled and snapped his fingers.
“Well hurry up, my hand’s a little twitchy back here.”
Rathson jumped a fraction as Frankie demonstrated.
“I’m assuming your boys have already finished patching up my girl?”
“You’d assume correct.”
“Good. You can tell them to get a head start on removing any little parting gifts you were going to send with me.”
“You really think I’d…”
“Yes,” Frankie interrupted. “And just to put your mind at rest. I know whatever’s in that container is the sort of thing you don’t want me talking about, but really, Rathson, who am I going to tell? This whole thing is ridiculous. I’ll leave and you can go back to playing king of the crappy little planet.”
He felt Rathson shift under his grip and dug the knife deeper, prompting the captain to still. Fyrn approached, followed by two guards. Frankie dragged Rathson backwards and jerked his head for Fyrn to follow.
“Sorry it had to be like this, but like I said, I don’t have time to deal with your shenanigans,” Frankie said. F.R.O.G.s lowered their guns as they passed and Fyrn grabbed a surprised Captain Leroux’s weapon to warn away some enterprising young soldiers.
“It’s too bad,” Rathson agreed. “You can scratch us off your rather short list of friends.”
“Oh, you were never on that list to begin with.”
“That hurts my feelings.”
“Cry me a river.”
They reached the gates of the compound and backed through. There were several vehicles parked outside. Fyrn jumped in and pressed the ignition as Frankie relieved Rathson of his weapon and shoved him in the back seat. They sped towards the clearing, Fyrn bringing them to a sliding stop beside the spaceship.
“Keep an eye on him.” Frankie instructed Fyrn and headed into the ship, doing a quick systems check. His darling was space worthy for the moment. He fired up the engines and ran back to beckon Fyrn aboard.
She backed up the ramp, leaving Rathson standing in the clearing. She punched the airlock and the ramp folded up and the door slid closed as Frankie pulled the ship into the air. She joined him in the cockpit, strapping in as they headed for atmosphere.
“We’ll be making another stop on a nearby moon. I want to do a thorough check to make sure those F.R.O.G.s didn’t hurt my girl,” Frankie said.
“Fine by me,” Fyrn said. Whatever it took to keep the ship afloat until her destination. “Do all your visits to Cristol go like that?”
“This was an exception. But I’ll keep the heroics to a minimum from now on.” He winked.
Fyrn laughed. “Sounds good, you cosmic cheese head.”
Hope you’ve enjoyed! Remember to read everyone else’s awesome entries and vote for your top THREE favorite stories!