Chapter 1 – Once Again, Brave Warrior, Forth Into the Breach (page 4 of 7)

“Tell that to the rectoscrape-a-scan,” I quipped, shifting uncomfortably from my painful foot to my slightly less painful one, only realizing there was no good way of standing after such a thorough identity validation.

Tracy smiled, her implanto-dimples puckering flawlessly, “you work here as long as I have and you don’t mind it so much.”

I smiled again, trying as desperately as I was able to look like a man who was not drippingly seeping ever-so-slightly of humano-blood from the anus. “You must have calluses where the sun don’t shine,” but the joke was on me, as I was wrong as rain. Though I’d only learn later from rifling through her personnel file that her back side was indeed callused like few others, it turns out she’s more of a spread-cheek sort of nude sunbather. Hey, it takes all kinds and so would I.

“Valentine’s waiting for you, you’d better hurry in.”

I dropped a consumaproposition card in vein on the corner of her round desk, as I always do, winked hard and alluringly with both eyes and made my way to the end of the chamberrarium. I took one last look at the glinting skyline, pressed the delevator call button and waited for the dreaded ding.

It dang, I sighed and stepped inside. I paused a moment, hating the entire experience of the delavator, took six shallow breaths and pushed the only button, “A”.

The delevator is a great tool for security, especially when it comes to something as critical as the security of the true Alpha Squad headquarters, but it didn’t make it feel any better. The doors closed and within seconds I’d begun my descent to eighteen miles beneath the planet’s surface at breakneck speed. It’s not so much the speed that can break your neck as the ceiling of the delevator, as it sinks beneath New Terra far faster than gravity, and there’s no way of holding on.

(You can also see the graphic inspired bythis chapter.

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