The Writers of the Universe
7. Dragons in Space
“Oh no,” Jeremy exclaimed directly after they cleared the void. “No, no, bad idea.”
They had landed on a very futuristic looking space ship. White walls ran down the tube like hallway they had appeared in. The stark contrast between the white walls and bright lights made them all squint their eyes as they realized they were surrounded by 50 armed men with laser guns.
“They are being controlled by the director. Look into their eyes. Their souls have been replaced by an artificial one.” Noal explained as they all shuffled in a circle trying not to provoke the guns to be fired.
The leader stepped forward, pulling off its face shield. A familiar face popped out from the covering, it was Mai.
“I quite like using this body. She is so easy to control and I can tell Jeremy feels some compassion for this formation of dust and bones,” Director Radfewx spoke through her.
“How did she get here, before we did?” Jeremy questioned as Mai’s stun gun rose up to meet his eye level.
“It must have been the void. It is a timeless entity, which means that when you step through to the other side it will only grant you access once the newly formed universe has been established.” Noal explained. “It’s hard to miss a new universe just popping up next door.”
“I had like a billion years to prepare. You are not the smartest enemy I’ve had to hunt down.” Mai puppeted.
“What about the dragons?” Cis asked pointing to a window that illuminated the deepness of outer space.
“What dragons?” Mai moved her gun to face Ringer.
A terrific roar answered her question from outside the floating fortress as something gigantic crashed into the hull. Ripping and tearing noises could be heard all around them.
“Shoot to kill,” Mai shouted as the swarm of guns charged off in different directions to defend the thin walls that separated them from the great black nothing.
She turned away from them. “I have instructed this body to bring you back alive. You best suit up lest you die by your own words.” The group didn’t have to be asked twice as Mai tossed them five small tubes about six inches in length. The tubes looked like sausage packages.
“I can’t wear this!” Cis shook the small log.
“Just do this. Break,” Tal-sen said while cracking the tube in half. A black color spilled out and crept up his hands. Continuing on up his forearms into his shoulders, it then spilled out over his body, covering everything like saran wrap around leftover turkey. Once the black fluid had fully covered Tal-sen, it quickly solidified and formed a bubble over his head with which he could see out of. He looked identical to the fully realized space marines that had threatened to shoot laser guns at them.
They each followed his example by snapping their capsules in half. The liquid felt cold and clammy as it expanded up Jeremy’s neck. He couldn’t help feeling the sensation that he might soon be drowning as it covered his mouth and nose.
With a sigh of relief, his bubble expanded and he was able to breathe. The space ship’s bright light reflected in oval rings off of his face covering. “Everybody ready to go?”
“Once sec boss,” Cis held up a finger. His liquid had decided to fall straight to the ground and was not moving like the rest had.
“I think that one must have expired,” Noal suggested.
“Hey!” Jeremy shouted and wheeled around. No one was in sight. Mai had long left as the terrible space war had picked up outside their canopy window.
“Just forget it, man. I’ll be fine,” Ringer bravely put forward.
“Try picking it up and putting it on your head,” Jeremy quickly directed. “We have to try something, these dragons are getting closer to breaching the hull.”
As he said those words, sparks flew all around them as the tube like hallway suddenly condensed like a crushed soda can. Claws three feet long carved through the metal surface as easily as a knife carving a Christmas ham. Before anyone could react to the sudden danger, one of the claws slid down Cis’s arms slicing it open along the length of his shoulder to forearm.
A sheet of blood hit the floor, just as Jeremy dove for Cis. Pulling him out of the way of the monstrous claws as they retracted and tried again to tear into the spaceship’s surface.
Jeremy could see that Cis was losing oxygen as fast as he was spilling blood. He dragged him down the hallway away from the mayhem as Tal-sen pulled out a sword that had formed on the side of his spacesuit and flung himself into battle with a dragon.
Wiping out the quill, Jeremy drew an outline of one of the capsules that had contained their suits. Once he finished, a capsule instantly appeared where his drawing had been. He cracked it open and spilled the liquid over his best friend.
The liquid quickly solidified around Cis’s face and thankfully the close-to-death blue left his face as he was able to breathe again.
Ten sets of boots ran past Jeremy towards the melee with lasers at full strength blasting at the dragon’s hand that was now stuck in the shredded metal. Tal-sen dove out of the way as several blasts came close to hitting him.
Saesha ran over to Jeremy as he was trying to stop his friend’s bleeding arm. “I know a thing or two about healing. I can fix this.”
Jeremy froze, not sure if he trusted his friend’s life to her skills.
“Don’t worry. I’ve survived many of millions of years and I have barely a scar to show for it. I can save him,” she reassured Jeremy, as she gently pulled Cis’s arm away from him.
He watched as her quick hand ran over the scar. Pulling out a thin metal prong that looked suspiciously like a radio antenna, she jabbed it into the place where the skin had separated.
“Hey, what are you doing?” Jeremy reacted to her barbaric instrumentation. He tried to grab her arm and pull it away but was stopped short as he watched her slowly move the end of her device up through his wound. The skin on either side closed as if she were simply zipping up a jacket.
She finished by bringing the metal wand back down to the beginning of the wound and quickly running up it again. If not for the vast amounts of blood both wet and dry, Jeremy would never have been able to tell that Cis’s arm had ever been injured.
“That was amazing!” Cis shouted for joy as a misfiring laser zoomed over his head.
They all paused as a giant red eye slammed against the window. The dragon’s one eye took up the entire expanse of the glass. It stared at them with an intelligence beyond that of a simple destructive creature. Revolving around, the eye appeared to be searching for something. Unable to find what it was searching for, the dragon tore away flapping its giant wings as it renewed its attack on another portion of the spacecraft.
Jeremy looked around to take stock of his companions. Noal was huddled in a corner, trying to avoid violence at all cost. Cis was recovering fast from his near death experience and Saesha was surveying the other injured space marines who lay throughout the hall. Looking for Tal-sen, Jeremy found him facedown and licking something from the ground.
His stomach turned sour once he realized that Tal-sen was slurping up Cis’s blood that had spilled everywhere. “What are you doing?”
Tal-sen poked his head up. “I didn’t know humans were full of our life water. We should have invaded centuries ago.”
Jeremy remembered being sprayed by a cloud when he landed on the Fifth world. He had wondered if it had been blood but had wished that was just his imagination. He was regretfully wrong on that mark.
“Tal-sen please stop. You are disgusting our friends,” Saesha scolded.
“But at home, this is as precious as gold. It is what fuels the machine. We are running frightfully low since you were last home,” Tal-sen pleaded.
“Another time,” Saesha said carefully.
“I think we should leave before this room collapses on us,” Noal shouted from behind his bunker.
“I’m so tired of going from place to place,” shouted Jeremy. “Isn’t there anywhere in all the multiverse, a safe place where I can just sleep without having to worry about getting murdered.”
Noal shook his head sadly. “I echo your pain, but we must forge on. I fear director Radfewx will be returning soon. The dragons have left.”
They stood with their ears cocked to the side, listening to the serene quiet that followed a fierce battle.
“I agree. Let’s get out of here,” Saesha echoed Noal’s statement.
“Remember, do try and pick a place that was previously invented,” Noal cautioned Jeremy.
“Where do you think we should go?” Jeremy asked Cis. He didn’t feel like he could trust himself to make the right decision this time.
“I’ve always liked fairy tales when I was growing up. You know with magic, and wizards and junk,” Cis answered unexpectedly.
“Okay then,” Jeremy smiled at his friend. Writing what his mouth was saying he continued, “magic, wizards, and…”
“Wait!” Cis jumped up unexpectedly. “How aren’t we getting sucked out into space right now?”
They all turned towards the jagged holes in the side of the ship’s exterior.
“Air pockets,” Noal suggested rather matter-of-factly. “As long as the machine that maintains the air pocket in this ship keeps going we should be safe.”
Seemingly, like it had taken Noal’s words as a challenge, whatever machine which was holding the great black nothing of space from pulling them out into its icy grasp stopped working. A tidal wave of air swept them up. The only thing that saved them was that a large chunk of metal big enough to block the gap they were heading towards fell faster than they did. All of them collided with the metal, as air sucked around them. They could feel the metal bending as it would soon be squashed by the sheer power of the vacuum of space.
Everyone screamed as shards of smaller bits of metal flew at them they rolled around on the side of the white walls of the ship. The entire situation was made worse when the gravity drive switched off, making their dodging twice as difficult. The objects that already carried momentum flew at them, while every able body fought the strange weightlessness of space while attempting to dodge flying debris.
One of the dead soldier’s body flew into Jeremy, knocking him off of his feet. His face ended up staring out into the coldness of space as he watched a dragon engulf a fleeing escape pod in flame. Another dragon ripped part of the engine to pieces. The spacecraft would soon be sunk completely.
With every vector force working against Jeremy, he pulled his head out of the thin clearance separating him from being another floating point in the stars. Pulling his arm up, he began rewriting his statement on the chunk of steel saving their lives. Once he finished he yelled, “Magic, and Wizards, n’ shit! Everyone in!”
Once again, a void opened up and Jeremy and his crew rolled into the exit. Leaving behind the strange universe where dragons fought spaceships.
Next Chapter – The Writers of the Universe 8. A Perfect Story
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2014 © Stew Stunes