Just got Abby 3, Spy for the Spiers back from the editor. The book will come out on 9/23/15 which, if you didn’t know, is my 1 year anniversary.
Without further ado, here you go. Enjoy.
My fist lashed out, slamming into the mechanical werewolf’s face and throwing him backward across the room. He smashed into a thin fiberboard table, shattering it beneath his weight and crashing to the ground in a heap.
Pain shot through my arm even through my padded glove as I wrung my hand out and took a menacing step forward, running one hand through my pink hair to brush it out of my face. The werewolf lay there, sparks shooting from its broken off ear, but it was already starting to move. In another few seconds, it would be on its feet and coming at me like I had a steak in my pocket. How did I know? Because that’s what it had done the last few times I had knocked its block off.
I glanced around the small makeshift apartment and sprinted into the attached kitchenette. The whole place wasn’t very big, leaving me nowhere to hide as the creature got to its feet and took a thundering step toward me. Its metal nails clicked on the cheap, green laminate tile as it eyed me with soulless blinking red eyes.
I jerked open the first drawer but was dismayed to find only plastic bags and tin foil, not a lot of help. I moved to the next drawer, flinging it open as the robot leapt onto of the small countertop, clearing at least three feet of vertical and horizontal distance like it was child’s play, which I guess for a seven foot tall robotic werewolf, it probably was.
This drawer yielded pay dirt. I jerked a huge butcher’s knife free as the creature landed on the floor behind me hard enough to crack the tile. I whirled, ducking as I did so and narrowly avoided a swipe of its metal claws as they cleaved through the air and the microwave to my left.
Sparks showered the creature as I jammed the butcher’s knife into the weak point in the thing’s knee joint. It had taken me several attempts to figure it out, but there was a hydraulic line barely shielded by the metal joints. If you stabbed at the spot hard enough and with the right angle, well…
The leg tore off the creature in a spray of fluid. It toppled forward, still reaching out for me with its claws as I danced backward out of its reach. It hit the ground with a thud and began crawling toward me, gouging into the tile as it came closer inch by inch.
I hopped up onto the counter and leapt down on the other side. I threw one last glance around the room, but spying no more intruders, I made my way to the front door. As I reached out toward it, alarm bells began going off in my head. I threw myself to the side as a shotgun blast ripped apart the cheap wooden door, showering me with fragments of wood and other debris.
I hit the floor so hard, the shock of it ran down my back. The werewolf was already starting to turn itself around, its safety shut offs already cutting off the leak. It wouldn’t be fast, but once it got back to its feet, it’d hop after me.
“Come out with your hands up, Abby,” a voice from outside the apartment called. “If you do, I won’t come in there and shoot you a whole bunch of times. Believe me, I’m looking forward to it, so I’d almost rather you try to escape.”
“Not on your life!” I squealed, but the only reply was condescending laughter. I dropped to my hands and knees, bear crawling toward the window alongside the window. As I did so, bullets tore through the cheap walls, covering me in drywall and paint. The pictures above me shattered. Glass rained down on me as I tucked myself into a ball, hoping desperately to avoid getting sliced into ribbons. It mostly worked.
Unlike last time, no one charged inside. So, they were learning too. A small canister rolled inside and gas began to spew forth from it. Damn. I hated when my adversaries learned from their mistakes too.
I held my breath and rushed forward toward the far wall and the big window. They probably had it covered, but I wasn’t sure what else to do. I hit it in a dive, spraying glass everywhere as pain exploded through me. Thankfully, my uniform kept most of the glass from slicing me open, but it still hurt to throw myself bodily through it.
The sound of bullets slamming into the ground around me filled my ears as I came to my feet in a roll and sprinted forward, zigging and zagging as best I could. A slug caught me in the shoulder, pitching me hard to the side and nearly making me lose my balance as my left arm fell uselessly to my side. Agony shot through me, but I pushed it down, gritting my teeth as my eyes slowly adjusted to the bright sunlight outside.
A bullet zinged by my head as I flung myself sideways, rolling under a parked car. An army of feet appeared in my vision as I lay there for a split second, catching my breath. I couldn’t make out how many were there, but I was guessing at least six. If I didn’t get out of here quickly, I was done for. I rolled out from beneath the other side of the car and got to my feet as someone pressed a cold steel barrel against the back of my head.
“Don’t move, Abby,” Chuck said, the smirk in his voice distinctive. “You did well, but it’s over now.”
“Are you sure?” I asked, whirling as the words left my mouth. The crack of the gunshot obliterated my hearing, reducing all sound into a muffled fog as I fell to the ground, pain unlike anything I’d ever felt coursing through me and setting every nerve aflame.
I lay there, staring up at the sun, unable to even close my eyes and twitched as electricity coursed through my body. After what felt like ever, Chuck nudged me with the toe of his big black combat boot.
“You need to stop trying to escape a gun to the back of your head,” he said, staring down at me and shaking his head. His piercing blue eyes watched for a moment longer before he squatted down next to me and poked my cheek with the barrel of his weapon. It looked like a gun, but instead of firing bullets, it fired concentrated blasts of electricity that knocked me on my ass for a several minute time span every single time. I was starting to hate it.
“What else would you like me to do?” I mumbled, somewhat surprised I could speak. My body must have been acclimating to the shock of the bullets. I wasn’t sure if it was a good thing or a bad thing.
“Not get a gun stuck against the back of your skull for one,” Chuck said, reaching down and grabbing my wrist like he was going to haul me to my feet, but instead, he dropped it and my arm fell lifelessly to the ground. He smirked. “I guess your mouth recovers before the rest of you. Next time, maybe I’ll shoot you twice.”
“Next time, I’m going to shoot you,” I replied, annoyance filling my voice.
“Abby, we’ve done this exact scenario over fifty times now, and while you’ve gotten pretty good at taking out the werewolf bots, you haven’t managed to take me down once.” He shook his head, smirking. “That’s not counting the other hundreds of scenarios we’ve run. Face it kid, you’re still amateur hour.”
I would have narrowed my eyes at him, and for all I know I had, but it didn’t feel like I had. “Next time I’m going to get you, Chuck.”
He leaned down and kissed me lightly on the forehead in a fatherly sort of way. “I look forward to it,” he replied, getting up. “Then maybe I can get off babysitting detail.” He turned and walked away.
A cadre of soldiers was standing off to the side, watching us. There were twelve in total, and while they weren’t all super soldier quality like Chuck, I had no doubt they were all very good. The sight of them made me want to smile. The first time I’d run through this scenario, there hadn’t been any of them. For the agency to have added additional soldiers, they must have thought I was getting better. Not that Chuck would admit it. He never admitted it when I did well, and to be honest, I wasn’t sure why I cared what he thought. Sure, he was like the big brother I’d never had, but he was part of the agency.
I still wasn’t quite sure why the agency was training me, or why the agency felt the need to use mechanical werewolves and other robotic supernatural creatures, but I knew one thing. I could sure use the training even if I didn’t want to admit it. Besides, it wasn’t like I had a choice.
My father Roberto was still in a coma after being stung by some sort of super bug thing during our attempts to stop the last world takeover. The only thing keeping him alive at this point was the agency, and so far, the only thing they’d wanted in return for rendering aid was for me to accept training.
I was sure sooner or later they were going to want me to do something else, and sadly, I’d probably agree to do it. This was how the agency worked after all. It captured your loved ones and forced you to do their bidding or else. It was only a matter of time before it happened to me. And believe me, the irony was not lost on my teenage brain because I had started off as collateral myself.
Since then, I’d had a whole bunch of super spy skills downloaded into my brain, but I lacked one thing, experience. It was why Chuck had beaten me every single time. He had been around a long time, and despite all my expertise in hand to hand combat, shooting, explosives, and virtually any other skill necessary to become a top agent, his experience was more than enough to trump my abilities. Then again, he was the guy they’d based the superhero Captain America on, so there was that.
As feeling returned to my body, I got slowly to my feet and fought the urge to attack Chuck from behind. It wasn’t because I thought jumping him with his back turned was unfair or unsportsmanlike or anything. It was because the last several times it’d just resulted in me taking an electric blast to the face.
Instead, I put on my big girl pants and walked toward the group of soldiers. They grew silent as I approached, which wasn’t that odd because I had the feeling most of them resented me. After all, they were the best of the best, and I could take on any of them in a fight without even breaking a sweat. Maybe even all of them if I was feeling particularly feisty.
“Hey,” I said, when no one acknowledged me. “What’s next, robot vampires?” I pointed past them toward where technicians were hauling the werewolf out of the house.
“I don’t think you’re ready for vampires yet,” the soldier nearest to me said. He was about my height and even though most of his face was hidden by a black, featureless mask, I got the feeling he was smirking.
“Yeah, it would be kind of hard to stake one through the heart since they’re made of metal and all,” I replied.
Chuck glanced at me and shook his head. “I’m about to dump you back to ninjabots if you keep failing to live for less than ten seconds outside the apartment.”
“If I had a gun, it’d be different,” I replied, giving him the same look I always did. “It’s not fair. I never start these things with a weapon.”
“Here’s a tip, kiddo,” the first soldier said. “Life’s not fair.”