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Daisy Versus the Tempus Venatores, Part I
Daisy was in her back yard, enjoying the first warm sunbeams of Spring. She and Penny were working in her flower garden. Since Daisy had put in a good word for her, Penny was allowed out of juvenile detention on work release as her personal assistant. Daisy loved working in the soil, and felt close to nature when she weeded, planted, watered, and fertilized. She even wore that goofy straw hat she found in the thrift store. She turned to Penny and grinned. Nonplussed, Penny let her head fall back, then groaned, “This is borrrrriiiiiiing!”
“Look missy, if you would rather do Rhonda’s share of the chores, I’m sure she’d be happy to come out here and-“
Penny didn’t wolf out, but her muscles tensed and she was ready for battle. Daisy had her Magic AK-47 that Never Runs Out of Ammo ready, though she already knew how little good it would do. Kneeling before them both was the massive form of a Temporal Enforcer.
“What the fuck is that thing?!” Penny exclaimed.
“It’s a statuebot from a thousand years in the future. And it’s probably here to kill me.”
“Yeah?! Hey stone face!” As it stood up, the Enforcer turned its empty gaze toward Penny and Daisy. “Yeah, that’s right! If you want Daisy, you have to come through me first!”
The Enforcer stared for a few more seconds, then announced, “Please. Leave. The area.”
Daisy was taken aback. “You’re not here for me?” she asked.
“Subject. Daisy. Irrelevant… Please. Leave. The area.”
Daisy stood down and stared at the Enforcer as it began trudging in the general direction of downtown. Penny looked at her curiously.
“It’s not here for me. So who is it here f-“
“WHUD! WHUD WHUD! WHUD!”
Four more statuebots landed in daisy’s yard. In a few seconds, they all stood and followed the first.
“Could you go a little easier on my lawn next time?!” Daisy griped loudly. “And if you don’t want me, then why’d you land in my yard anyway?!”
“What are they after?” Penny pondered.
“Probably someone who doesn’t deserve it. Come on! Let’s follow them!”
They both jumped in Daisy’s pink Mazda Miata, and followed the Enforcers closely. Right about then, she really missed Garth and his mysterious silver box. Still, unlike most large, lumbering things, the Enforcers actually managed to avoid damaging any property or injuring any civilians. Soon, the statuebots came to a stop at Kanawha Plaza.
They all moved to surround the Plaza, their huge stone lances at the ready, all five pointed at the center. Downtown traffic was significantly disrupted. When a few bold motorists stopped and got out to protest, the Enforcers repeated their warning to leave the area.
Daisy and Penny got out and prepared for… well, they didn’t know what, exactly. The Enforcers stoically held their positions. Then, a small, light blue flash lit up the center of the plaza. The Temporal Enforcers drew back their massive lances, ready to strike. Then, the blue light grew to a large orb of energy and five tongues of lightning snaked out from it, each striking an Enforcer.
It lasted a full seven seconds, and the Enforcers did not move for the duration. Next, the bright blue orb shrank to nothing, leaving three figures in its aftermath. On the left was a short, fat, balding, greasy, old pale white man who appeared to be wearing red goggles. Daisy thought he looked familiar, then realized it was the pedophile whose eyes she had gouged out! He was not wearing goggles. Those were artificial eyes. He grinned maliciously and licked his lips.
The man on the right had light brown skin, and was of average height and build. He was dressed in a charcoal-gray business suit, and carried a silver briefcase. His shoulder-length black hair was perfect.
The man in the center was obviously supposed to be the leader. He was close to seven feet tall, and very thin. He was dressed all in black, including his cowboy hat. Around his waist, neck, and shoulders were a multitude of thin chains. His mouth was stretched back into an inhuman grin filled with gnarly teeth. His bright blue eyes seemed fiercely alert and cunning despite the intensely tired-looking dark circles under them. His skin was a sickly pale bluish-gray. He surveyed the scene around him, quickly taking everything in. Then, he spoke in a surprisingly deep voice.
“Amazing what a little high voltage can do, ain’t it?”
He proceeded to walk over to one of the now motionless Enforcers and give it a good kick in the knee. It was too big for him to knock over, but it did not react either. The statuebots were out.
A sizable crowd remained, even though many who had come to witness the spectacle were now running or driving away as they could. Meanwhile, the pedophile began adjusting a mechanism on the side of his left cyborg eye, while the man in the suit knelt and opened his shiny briefcase. The tall one in the middle planted his hands on his hips and continued to look around. He was clearly the one in charge.
“Chronoparticle readings are consistent,” the suited man said in a refined British accent. He looked up from his briefcase, which apparently contained some sort of electronic equipment. “It appears we have reached our destination.”
The pedophile chimed in, “It’s certainly Richmond the way I remember it. I’ll bet the old me is still over in Oregon Hill right now, learning how not to trip over everything.”
“A problem you know I will remedy soon,” said the tall grinning ghoul. He then gazed back out at downtown Richmond and announced proudly, “So we’ve landed in March 16th, 2004: The day Daisy disappeared!”
TO BE CONTINUED
Daisy Facilitates a Family Reunion
Daisy drove Penny out to the Federal prison to visit Mickey Ice. When the three of them were all sitting down at the table, Mickey continued to stare silently at Daisy.
“Mickey,” Penny began.
Still glaring at Daisy, he interjected, “What is this game? You are trying to play me the stupid this time. You have already won. Why do you do this?”
Penny’s mouth was still open, so she closed it again and started over. “Mickey, what are you-?”
“WHO ARE YOU?!” he snapped as he turned to Penny. “HOW DARE YOU DEFILE MY SISTER’S MEMORY LIKE THIS?!”
“I AM YOUR SISTER, YOU FUCKWAD! AND DON’T YOU YELL AT ME!” Then she started rattling off a rapid string of loud Russian that Daisy had no hope of understanding until Mickey stood up and grabbed Penny. How he had removed his shackles was anyone’s guess.
A guard was already rushing to break it up, but Daisy held up her hand and shook her head. A second later Mickey let out a bellowing sob.
“Oh my baby sister! It really IS you!” He held her at arms length then proceeded to kiss her cheeks before pulling her close again. “I thought you were dead! I thought this bitch killed you!”
“Oh, yeah, call me a bitch,” Daisy muttered. “Real original. You’re welcome, by the way.”
“Daisy’s not a bitch, Mickey. She’s my friend.”
They all sat back down and Mickey calmly put his own handcuffs back on. The guard stood ready for trouble, but Mickey remained docile, now smiling with joy and relief.
“Oh, my baby sister, I am so happy you are alive. You had us all fooled. How did all this happen? And, how is Daisy your friend now? The things you told me about her-“
“Let’s not worry about that right now, okay? Let’s just say I don’t feel that way anymore,” Penny interjected nervously. “I was wrong about Daisy and I had some… issues that I needed to work out.”
Daisy just sat and smiled.
“So how did you live? I heard you had a knife thrown at your heart.”
“Um, it wasn’t as bad as they thought,” Penny said. She then continued the cover story Daisy had crafted and Penny had rehearsed. “They got me mixed up with another girl, and told you I was dead, but then, when they figured out the mistake, they failed to inform you. By then, I had been transferred to Chippenham. But it turns out the knife missed my heart, so I didn’t need cardiac surgery.”
Mickey leaned forward and gazed into penny’s eyes. He glanced at Daisy, then back at Penny. “I still believe you are Penny,” he said quietly, “but I do not believe your story.”
Penny glanced nervously at Daisy. Daisy steeled herself for possible trouble after all.
Mickey continued, “I am sure you have good reason for keeping truth from me, especially with screws so close.” He turned and grinned happily at the nearby guard. “You have told me quite a shaggy dog story. But I bet things would get hairy for you if you told me everything. I am sure the truth is quite a howler.” He winked at Penny whose face had gone completely white.
“But you are my baby sister, and I will always love you, no matter what.” He smiled more warmly than Daisy had thought him capable of.
As the two siblings began to talk again, Daisy quietly removed herself and waited until their time was up.
As they were leaving, Penny whispered, “He knows!”
“Ya think?” Daisy thought, but was kind enough not to say out loud.
Daisy Raises the Stakes
Daisy had a bad feeling Friday night, when the TV station announced a weekend-long Buffy marathon. Quite honestly, she was tired of vampires. The few she had dealt with already irked her enough and that had been weeks ago. She changed the channel.
Interview With the Vampire was on. She liked Tom Cruise, but that wasn’t enough this time.
Flip channels again.
Dracula, starring Gary Oldman.
Dracula, starring Christopher Lee.
Dracula, starring Bela Lugosi.
Disgusted, Daisy turned off the TV… or tried to. Bela cheesily raised his cape, gleefully bearing his fangs, then said, “Daaaisy! I vaahnt to suuuck you blooood!”
“Really?” Daisy deadpanned. “Is fucking with my TV the best you can do?” Immediately, she regretted issuing that challenge.
The windows all exploded inward as a small platoon of smelly, dirty, fanged undead invaded. These were obviously low-level mook vampires, as they did not even exhibit the speed or strength of those Daisy had encountered at the goth club. Short on oak stakes, Daisy spent only a microsecond on lament, then smashed her grandmother’s antique oak chair. Dodging and rolling out of the clumsy grasp of one vampire after another, she grabbed two legs from the broken chair and began staking bloodsuckers left and right.
There were probably a dozen vampires when she started, but in a few minutes they had all been reduced to dust. Of course, that dust was all over her floor. Also, the room was a wreck. It looked like someone had just fought twelve vampires in it. Planting her hands on her hips, Daisy sighed and said, “Guess I’ll have to clean this up.”
“I so love it when you talk to yourself,” said a very cultured-sounding voice. “It is incredibly endearing.” Daisy couldn’t pinpoint its source until she realized it echoed from within her own head. She wondered briefly if she were going crazy.
“No,” responded the deep, masculine voice. “You have your wits about you. Unless, of course, I decide to take them away.”
For the first time in quite awhile, Daisy felt vulnerable. This voice, which she assumed belonged to a nearby vampire, represented someone’s way directly into her mind. Either that or she had spontaneously gone crazy.
She wondered silently who this was.
“My name is Thomas. And to be honest, Daisy my dear, I am quite upset with you. You and your Oriental friend recently dispatched some of my best and brightest. You caught them unaware while they were enjoying what you call ‘night life.’”
Daisy thought a snarky comment about how sorry things were for Thomas if those were his best and brightest. But out of fear, she said nothing.
“Oh, ‘tis quite true, my dear. They did not possess a constitution such as yours. So fear not the effect your words may have upon me, for it is your actions that concern me most. And now, as a direct consequence of those actions, I shall give you a taste of insanity, as promised.”
Immediately, the now smashed television lit up and a dark and evil presence began to seep through its screen. Daisy was paralyzed by fear. A terror unlike any she had ever known gripped her as pure malice and evil oozed its way from the broken TV.
She knew that thing contained violation, abandonment, overwhelming sadness, and every unpleasant thing she had ever experienced, magnified by orders of magnitude.
It contained loss: loss of hope, loss of identity, loss of life, loss of sanity, loss of innocence. She felt her mind begin to break just a little, when a high keening pierced the night. It was almost like a dog’s whine. Then it stopped abruptly. Daisy’s mind cleared for a second and she realized the television was not leaking evil. But then all the fear returned, and the dread that, once again, her father would-
And then a mighty wolf’s howl exploded from Penny’s room. Then, Penny herself came galloping into view in wolf form, howling at the top of her lungs. Like a thin sheet of ice, Daisy’s funk shattered, the remains already melting away into righteous fury as Penny’s howl subsided.
“Where is he?!” Daisy demanded.
Penny stood on her hind legs and sniffed the air furtively, then bolted out the nearest window. Daisy followed, only to come up short. Penny stood there growling angrily, staring at the cloudy night sky, her wolfish hand-paws clenched into shaky fists. A deplorably bad imitation of Vincent Price’s laugh from Thriller echoed through the darkness as a black silhouette drifted away into the sky.
“Good thing it’s night time,” Penny remarked. “I just hope nobody’s up… or has a camera.”
Daisy was surprised at first, thinking Penny had learned to speak while in wolf form. A quick glance in her direction disabused her of that notion.
Once again, Penny stood stark naked in the great outdoors.
“Come on Penny. Let’s get you inside. And I so hope you didn’t shred those pajamas when you morphed.”
“No,” Penny giggled, covering herself as best as she could while she walked. “I sleep naked these days. Never know when I’ll have a night like this.”
Daisy Makes a New Friend
Daisy was walking through the woods near the end of winter one day when she heard a pitiful dog-like whine off to her right. She readied herself for a surprise attack and went to investigate. She saw a young werewolf, still in wolf form, caught in a metal trap.
Closer inspection revealed the trap to be silver, which could be the only reason the werewolf was caught in it. Its leg was bleeding where the trap held it and the creature seemed half starved.
Daisy reached out to the werewolf to let it sniff her hand, ready to yank it away if attacked.
At first, it shied away as if scared of Daisy, but then sniffed the proffered hand. Then the wolf tried to sniff the contents of Daisy’s coat pocket. Daisy reached into her pocket and pulled out her turkey sandwich, unwrapped it, and handed it to the werewolf.
It took the sandwich in its mouth, then sat down and ate it using its hands, much like a normal human would. When it sat down, Daisy realized it was female. The she-wolf seemed grateful, and began panting happily after calmly eating the sandwich. But her happiness soon turned to sorrow as the pain of the trap returned.
“Daisy!” cried a jovial voice from down the path. She looked up to see a seventeen year-old Vietnamese-American boy wearing a black trenchcoat, two Bandolier belts encrusted with small throwing knives, two larger knives in holders on his belt, a short sword strapped to his back (accessible through a hole in his trenchcoat), dark sunglasses, a black headband (under which she suspected yet another, smaller throwing knife was hidden) and, of course, his custom all-terrain rollerblades.
“Blayder Boy!” she responded fondly.
He rolled to her and skidded to a stop. She hugged him briefly and enjoyed his solid warmth, then tried to remind herself she was not falling for him.
“How lucky is that!” he said, turning to the werewolf in the trap. She shrunk away from him, whimpering again. “It looks so pitiful. I almost can’t bring myself to kill it.”
“Her,” Daisy remarked icily.
Blayder Boy looked at her quizzically.
“This werewolf. She’s female. And why exactly are you planning on killing her, again?”
Blayder Boy looked sympathetic as he spoke. “It’s… a werewolf. We kinda have to kill it.”
“Because… They attack people. They’re killers.”
“I once thought the same thing about lizard beasts,” she replied, her voice barely above a whisper.
Blayder Boy considered this, then smiled. “Point taken. Okay… This trap looks like it’s been here for some time. I would guess the werewolf it was set for either was caught or moved on years ago. So… If the Spirit of Justice wills it…”
He approached the wolf and she made no move to attack. He used a knife to pry open the trap.
Before either Blayder Boy or Daisy could react, the werewolf had him pinned to the ground and was vigorously licking him all about the face and ears. Then she sprang from him and hugged Daisy tightly, then began licking her face as well.
And slowly, Daisy realized that the werewolf was no longer a wolf. She was a bedraggled-looking nude blond girl, maybe a year or so younger than her. She also recognized her. So did Blayder Boy.
“Bad Penny?!” they both exclaimed simultaneously.
Bad Penny immediately stopped licking Daisy’s face, then began bawling uncontrollably and held Daisy even more tightly.
“Thank you for not killing me!” she sobbed.
Daisy patted Penny’s back. Over Penny’s shoulder, she glared at Blayder Boy. When, unreasonably, he didn’t read her mind, she half-whispered “Gimme your coat!”. By this time he was back on his feet. He whipped off his trenchcoat and flung it to Daisy who reached out, caught it, then draped it over Penny’s back.
“It’s okay,” Daisy reassured her.
Once she calmed down, Penny explained how it worked. “When I’m in my wolf state, I don’t remember being human. I just remember what happens as a wolf. But when I’m human, I remember everything.”
Daisy was still a bit wary, but Penny’s tears and words put her fears at ease. “The bonds formed as a wolf cannot be broken. I hated you before, but I can’t now. You fed me when I was hungry, and you both spared me from death by silver. Now I’m loyal… heh… loyal as a puppy.”
Penny smiled winningly. “I know what happened before was an accident and obviously you didn’t really kill me.”
“Well,” Daisy remarked wryly, “you need to let your brother know you’re alive.”
“You know Mickey?” Penny replied, intrigued. Then, “Ohhhhhh… What did he dooooo?!”
They all talked about it as they walked Penny back to Daisy’s car. After making sure the girls were alright, Blayder Boy rolled out to patrol the streets of Richmond. Daisy took Penny home for more food, a bath, some clothes, and a really long talk about what would come next.
Daisy and the Mysterious Shadow
Daisy was at school eating lunch when she looked out the window and saw a shapeless blob of shadow staring back at her. She blinked and it was no longer shapeless. Now it had the form of a teenage girl. Then she realized the shadow person looked like her!
Except for the black hair, pale white skin, and black dress, it was like looking in a mirror.
Daisy stood up and began walking to the window. “You gonna eat that?” inquired Patrick McStilson, as he pointed at her unfinished lunch.
“Knock yourself out,” she replied absently. She kept her eyes on the shadow double and slowly made her way to the door. She opened it and already knew the shadow girl would be gone when she rounded the corner. To her surprise, she was still there.
“Who are you?” Daisy inquired, wary of a possible trap.
“Walk with me, Daisy. We have plenty of time.” The shadow girl motioned to the door. Inside the cafeteria, everyone stood stock still. Patrick was frozen, still reaching for her tray. Two teens in mid-collision stood suspended, their spilling drinks hanging in midair.
“Time manipulation,” Daisy intoned unenthusiastically. “Great. This won’t bring any more statue-bots down on my head, will it?”
“Temporal Enforcers only notice when you go back in time. They don’t seem to notice when you freeze it. Technically, though, it’s not frozen. We’re just moving very fast. If you stood in one place long enough, you might notice movement.”
“Well that’s nice and all, but who are you, why are you here, and what do you want from me?”
“I am here to warn you of a coming menace that will test your strength, spirit, and intelligence like nothing you have ever faced before. You are strong, Daisy, but you are not prepared for this. You need my help.”
“And how would you help me?”
“I possess immense power. I can give you that power.”
“Really. And how, exactly, would this happen?”
The shadow girl paused in reflection, then answered slowly. “I would merge with you.”
“Riiiiiiiiiight. Who are you again?”
“My name is not important,” the girl replied. “What is important is-“
“Nononono. Usually when someone says their name is not important, that means it is. So tell me: Who are you?”
The girl began fuming, then, in a piercing screech, yelled, “I’M MISTER DARK EVIL!”
“No offense, but you’re not at all how I remember you.”
Still angry, the alleged Mister Dark Evil, still in gothish Daisy-double form, grumbled an explanation. “When I was split from Mister Shadow Man, I initially kept a residue of his form. But soon I became formless, drifting here and there, directionless, biding my time, gathering myself and focusing. Then I remembered my true purpose.”
Her dark twin gave a nasty grin. “Wouldn’t you like to know!”
“I’m sure it involves something evil.”
“Undoubtedly. But I am still non-corporeal. I can’t rush you and cut you down in the real world. However, I can enter any vessel - that would be a human body - if they are willing… and strong enough. Otherwise, I can only communicate with people in dreams.”
“Wait a minute. That means-“
“That’s right,” the shadow girl interjected, “I’ll see you around. Time to wake up now!”
The bustle of the cafeteria assaulted Daisy’s ears as she snapped awake. Patrick McStilson eyed her warily as he contemplated her unfinished lunch.
The two colliding teens consummated their awkward ballet as their trays clattered to the floor and drinks stained their shirts.
“Hey Daisy, you gonna-“
“Knock yourself out,” she said to Patrick as she stood up from the table. No longer hungry, she made her way to Calculus and was at her desk a full minute before the first bell rang.
Daisy Versus Mickey Ice, Part II
Daisy was dead. She just knew it. Her eyes were shut tight as she contemplated what it meant to have her life end. It felt an awful lot like still being alive, though. She still felt like she was kneeling on concrete. Could he have possibly missed? Was she still alive? She opened one eye, ready to gaze into the barrel of that revolver…
…and the man’s hand held nothing.
He screamed in surprise as he realized he had just been forcibly disarmed. He gripped his hand, now feeling the burn of having his Magic .357 that Never Runs out of Ammo shot from it. A woman’s voice called out from the same distance as the last gunshot.
“If you so much as breathe wrong, Mickey, the next one goes through your head!”
Daisy turned to the source of the voice. A tall, muscular black woman stood atop a nearby roof. She wore camouflage fatigues and an Outback-style hat, the left side of the brim pinned up. She currently had Mickey in the sight of her Barrett M82.
Daisy recognized her. “Hawkeye Webb!”
“Hi Daisy. I suggest you back away from my bounty. You know what a good shot I am, but you can never be too careful.”
“He’s all yours, Sniper Girl.” Daisy retreated gratefully. In the last split second before she thought her life was about to end, she found she didn’t want it to. She was overjoyed that Hawkeye Webb had pulled a deus ex machina and saved her life.
Hawkeye Webb sauntered to the edge of her roof and dropped to the sidewalk gracefully, never taking her gunsight off Mickey. Meanwhile, he massaged his hand while staring daggers at Daisy and Webb.
“How’s Captain Salty?” Daisy inquired.
“I’m doin’ quite fine, Blondie!”
The old sea captain emerged from behind a building. He was white, but his skin was tanned like leather. His wizened face was framed by a short white beard, sans mustache.
“Daaad!” Webb complained, “I told you I got this! You didn’t have to leave the ship!”
“She’s in good hands. Besides, I had to make sure my Little Bird was alright. Looks like I had no reason to worry.” He flashed that smile that Daisy found so endearing. Still, he kept his hand near the Walther P38 Daisy knew was hidden under his coat.
Webb had just finished handcuffing Mickey, who was now fuming silently. She just now noticed Daisy’s injuries.
“Oh good Lord, girl! We gotta get you to a hospital!”
Daisy gritted her teeth and replied. “I’ll be fine.”
“No, I don’t think so, Blondie,” Captain Salty said gravely. “I bet this bilge rat did some serious damage. You’d best be seeing an emergency room, ASAP.”
Hawkeye Webb stopped her. “You’re in no shape to be fooling with that, Daisy. Don’t worry about it. I’ll keep it safe aboard the Princess Jennifer. We’ll be in port for awhile.”
An ambulance carried Daisy to MCV where she saw an orthopaedic surgeon. Her shoulder was okay, but the outlook was not very good for her hand. Daisy was very angry about this, and then very depressed. Rhonda and Brandon visited her at the hospital and tried to cheer her up.
Later on, Captain Salty and Hawkeye Webb visited her too. Webb returned Daisy’s sword to her. She also informed Daisy that Mickey Ice’s Magic .357 that Never Runs Out of Ammo was destroyed when she shot it.
And finally, when she was sleeping, Daisy had another visitor. He slipped a syringe full of something special into Daisy’s IV. When she awoke in the morning, her hand was completely healed. The doctors were all baffled, but gave Daisy a clean bill of health and sent her home.
Daisy Versus Mickey Ice, Part I
Daisy clutched her bleeding shoulder with her left hand. Her right hand hung at her side, also bleeding, and in excruciating pain. He had simply caught her off guard, and she could not believe she was about to die. Defeated, tired, and on her knees, she awaited the final shot that would end her life. As she resigned herself to it, she found that, aside from never seeing Rhonda, Garth, or Brandon again, she didn’t really mind.
It had started in Carytown. She was on the sidewalk when a chunk of concrete exploded from the wall of a nearby building. A fraction of a second later, she heard the gunshot that caused it. The slug would have hit her in the head if she hadn’t knelt to pick up a quarter. Next, everyone else on the sidewalk scattered, screaming.
She was immediately back up and in a ready position. She jumped out of the way of the next shot, drawing her ninja sword that was hard as a rock and sharp as a razor. The third shot, she deflected with her blade as she determined the sniper’s position.
He was on the roof of a parking garage, his precise shots erupting from… a revolver! Her would-be assassin was a tall white man in his early 20s wearing a business suit, his long brown hair in dreadlocks, a cigarette hanging from the corner of his mouth, and a .357 magnum held in his left hand almost as an afterthought.
He smirked like the arrogant bastard he was, then casually fired another deadly accurate shot right at Daisy’s head. Again she deflected it with her sword. And then, he fired two shots in rapid succession. The first, she deflected, but it was only a diversion. The second raked a trench out of her right shoulder and she nearly dropped her sword. But she realized those were his fifth and sixth shots. She knew she had only a brief window while he reloaded…
Without reloading, he fired another shot that went right through her hand. Her ninja sword clattered to the ground as her middle tarsal shattered and she lost control of her fingers.
She bolted around a corner out of the line of fire. Another shot nicked the bricks behind her, its magnum boom already echoing off the nearby buildings. Her hand was ruined, her shoulder felt like it was on fire, and she couldn’t use her Magic AK-47 that Never Runs Out of Ammo to fight back, since this guy was human.
This begged the next question: how did *his* gun keep firing without reloading? Clearly he had a Magic .357 that Never Runs Out of Ammo. But just as clearly, it did not carry the same restriction as her rifle.
Then she remembered the phone conversation between Bad Penny and her brother. As realization dawned, she stopped running and fell to her knees. He wanted to avenge the death of his little sister: a mixed up teenage girl that Daisy had killed.
Wouldn’t I want to put down anyone who would harm Rhonda? she wondered to herself. She stayed there on the sidewalk, on her knees, tears cascading down her face. The scattered people hiding in shops and around corners began murmuring, then started screaming again. Daisy slowly looked up and saw the man standing over her, his .357 pointed directly at her head.
So now here she was, ready to die.
“I’m sorry,” she said quietly.
His smile disappeared. In a thick Russian accent, he replied, “‘Sorry’ will not bring back my baby sister. ‘Sorry’ will not forgive you for stealing her body.”
“Stealing her…? What?!” Daisy replied, whipping her head up to face her executioner.
“Don’t play the stupid. Nobody plays the stupid to Mickey Ice. I will have my revenge.”
As if from a distance, Daisy heard the gunshot…
TO BE CONTINUED
Daisy’s Duel to the Death
Daisy was relaxing at Brandon’s house (AKA Blayder Boy’s Base of Operations) one afternoon. Brandon’s mother had baked cookies and they were delicious. At first, Brandon had been embarrassed to admit that he still lived with his parents (even though he was neither an emancipated minor like Daisy, nor an adult yet.)
Daisy told him she wished she still had her parents. (Her father wasn’t dead but she considered him so, and she had no idea where or even who her mother was.) He brought up his bisexuality, but she reassured him that it didn’t bother her. The only thing that did secretly bother her was her fear that she was possibly leading him on. She really was starting to have feelings for him, but she was still not over Garth. His late-night street appearance and subsequent rescue of the giant alien slug reinforced that fact.
Daisy was pondering what she would do next when Brandon’s mother came into his room.
“Brandon,” she said in a thick Vietnamese accent, “you friend Penny here.”
“Whaaaaat?” Brandon intoned, nonplussed.
She came right up to Brandon and conspiratorially whispered (but loud enough for Daisy to hear), “You know I never like that girl! She bad news! Not like this one! This one good catch!” Daisy felt herself blush at Mrs. Phung’s words and saw Brandon do the same. “I can tell her you not here,” she continued.
“No, mom, that’s okay. I’ll talk to her. She won’t be here long,” he said darkly. Then, to Daisy, “I’ll be right back.”
Daisy just smiled supportively.
Half a minute later, Brandon walked back in, looking frustrated.
“She’s not here to see me. She wants to see you.”
“Really?” Daisy said, incredulously.
“She wants a duel. To the death.”
“I really don’t want to kill her. She’s just a mixed up kid.”
“Yeah,” Brandon agreed sarcastically. “She’s a mixed up kid who robs banks, crashes craft shows, and lies about who she is and what she stands for.”
“I’ll cut her just a little if it’d make you happier,” Daisy said, smirking.
Brandon closed his eyes and took a deep breath. “No, don’t hurt her… I mean, any more than necessary.”
“I’ll just knock her out and carry her back to juvie.”
This time Brandon smiled supportively, as Daisy marched out to meet her fate.
As soon as Daisy walked out the front door, an old-style survival knife came flying at her face. Her reflexes engaged before should could even think. In a flash, she judged the distance, speed, and rotation of the knife, deftly grabbed it by the handle, then flung it back at its source.
Bad Penny was so surprised that she did not even move as the knife hurled back at her and plunged deep into her chest, cracking her sternum and penetrating her heart.
She gasped her last breath just before the ambulance arrived. The paramedics could find no pulse and pronounced her dead on the scene.
Daisy was still in shock.
“I’ve never killed anyone before. She didn’t deserve this. Oh my god. What have I done?”
“You did what you had to, Daisy. She was trying to kill you.”
Intellectually and logically, she knew he was right. But it didn’t make her feel any less like a murderer.
She never heard about the disappearance of Penny’s body from the morgue until much later, under less than ideal circumstances.
Daisy Meets a Giant Alien Slug
Daisy was spinning a clay pot on her new potter’s wheel one evening when she heard a shuddering rumble. The whole house shook with the force and Daisy only lost her grip for a split second, but that was all it took. Her pot was now ruined. This was the twelfth ruined pot of the night and now she was pissed.
Daisy stood up, wiped her hands on a rag, unplugged the wheel, then went outside to investigate. A massive gray and tan globular form was making its way down the street past her house. Amorphous lumps served as legs and produced the loud thuds as it shambled ponderously.
“Hey!” Daisy shouted.
The creature stopped, then turned what Daisy presumed to be a head her way. “Whaaaat?” it bellowed slowly.
“Could you please not stomp so loudly through the neighborhood? You’re shaking people’s houses!”
The thing’s headlike appendage lowered slightly. “Sooorrrrrryyy,” it bellowed deeply.
“Can you move more quietly?” Daisy asked, her annoyance now somewhat abated.
“I willl tryyyyy.” It retracted its leg-like lumps and began to slither down the street, leaving a thick, sticky trail of mucus behind it.
“Where are you from?” Daisy inquired.
“Iiiii dooooon’t thiiiiink it’ssss anyyywheeeere onnnnn thisssss plaaaaneeeeet. Iiii thiiiink Iiiiii’m looooossssst.” The slimy behemoth sounded so pitiful.
Just then there was a flash of darkness and a familiar figure stood on the street a hundred yards away.
“Garth!” Daisy called out. His head turned to her, but it was too dark to see his face. He looked back at the creature and called out, “Want to go home?”
The thing craned its sizable neck down to examine Garth.
Garth produced a small box and pushed a sequence of buttons. Then, the creature’s color began to darken. Soon, a hole in space began to form around it. Abruptly, it was gone.
So was Garth.
“Wait…” Daisy whispered, the word dying on her lips. She stared a while at the spot where he had stood, then went to bed.