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Not a New Dawn, Exactly

by on June 10, 2014

Rain didn’t waste any time. “Right, you’re Charon, I’m Death, I want into hell. You’ve got the only ferry in.” She reached into her pocket for a coin. Then she paused. No one used cash anymore. There were a few planets where they still muddled about with little pieces of paper or shiny bits of metal, but everyone else had gone electronic. “I’m guessing you don’t have a card reader?”

The old man snapped something at her. The words translated in her head as usual; that sort of thing happened a lot when you were Death. Rain was highly offended. “I only asked if you had a card reader. There’s no reason to bring my mother into it. And I don’t think what you suggest is even physically possible, let alone ethically.” Then she paused. The man hadn’t spoken in Greek, or Latin. It was…Anuranian?  “Oh wonderful,” Rain said. “This isn’t Hell. This is that pocket dimension those hyper-intelligent frogs created two years ago. You’re not Charon. You’re just a frog in disguise!”

Ribbit, croaked the old man, knowing that the game was up. Rain waved her hand again. She normally could transport herself wherever she wanted; evidently her Death powers had glitched up somewhere. This time would work.

Except it didn’t. Rain’s boots kicked up a flurry of sand as she landed on a dazzlingly golden beach. There seemed to be a party going on further down the shore. People were throwing red confetti everywhere. Rain didn’t even pause to enjoy the sunshine or the party. She waved her hand again.

Milroy Birnbaum was a bit surprised when Rain reappeared right in front of him, only a minute or so after she’d gone. “You find Hadley already, did you? …or didn’t you?”

“I can’t get in,” Rain said, very upset. “I tried twice. It’s shielded somehow. I try and I get bounced somewhere else. Something’s wrong.”

At that moment something cracked across the sky of Milroy’s home planet. A round droid-like device screamed in from above, trailing smoke and fire, before skidding to a stop at Milroy’s feet. The god of war glowered as he bent over it. “It’s an emergency pod. I’ve seen these before. There’s a battle goin’ on somewhere.”

“Are you sure?”

“I’m the god of war, 32nd precinct, I should know. Someone’s playin’ for keeps out there. These scorch marks  are Flopsian radiation. There ain’t many out there that play with that.”

“The bunnies,” Rain said coldly. “It’s them, isn’t it.”

Milroy didn’t answer. He had been working at the pod as he spoke. All at once a ghostly blue form etched itself in the air. It flickered, and its voice was half eaten with static, but Rain recognized it at once. It was William.

Not sure how much this pod has left. Anyway. I wanted to let someone know. We tried. We did. The whole fleet. Full torpedo rounds. We gave it everything we had, but it wasn’t enough. They just kept coming. Bunnies. More bunnies than I’ve ever….”

The hologram blinked out for a moment. Milroy gave the pod a kick, and the blue ghost reappeared.

Systems failing. Not much left. They’re still coming. Rain… I don’t know if you’re out there. You might be seeing me soon. Official capacity and all.  I’d thought…. after the war, we could’ve….

The hologram sputtered out.  Rain didn’t speak.

“So,” Milroy said. “It’s the end, then. That’s why you can’t get into hell. It’s breaking out here. The bunnies are loose. Someone opened the Bunniless Pit, only they can’t stop it now, and the galaxy’s ending.”

He started to walk away. “Where are you going?” Rain managed.

Milroy shrugged. “Last Battle, and all that. They’ll be callin’ in all the gods of war for this one.”

Rain’s fists clenched. “Not yet they’re not.” She seized the pod from the ground and ran towards the door that led from Milroy’s planet into hell. As she ran she jabbed at the pod with one hand, and the blue ghost came back to life once more. Not sure how much this pod has left…

“So where are you going?” Milroy called after her.

“I’m not leaving Hadley down there while the world goes smash,” Rain yelled back. She didn’t have time for further conversation. She only hoped that the door was just bright enough to think holograms counted as living people. She hurled herself and the pod with its ghostly image towards the door, and-

For previous entries in Hadley’s Story, go here. Thanks for reading!

  1. Yay! The Bunnies. Great story; can’t wait to read more!

  2. Cliffhanger again. Damn. Good thing next season is not that far off.

    • True. Unlike shows such as Game of Thrones, I won’t leave people hanging all summer. … or WILL I? 😀

  3. Aw, come on… you couldn’t tell us if she makes it or not?! Sigh…

    • Of course she makes it. I couldn’t kill off Rain, could I? COULD I? (Literally, I don’t think I can, since she’s already the incarnation of Death. But that’s beside the point. 😀 )

  4. You better not leave us hanging all summer! Don’t make me unleash the bunnies on you.

  5. So you get me happy Rain’s got a date and then you just have to go and bring William back…

  6. Stories aren’t fun unless there’s a love triangle. 🙂

  7. Meg permalink

    I know I should be afraid of the Bunnies but they still make me kinda squeal with delight. I continue to find your writing charming, your story dazzling, your characters lovable. More!

  8. Great story…simply captivating. Looking forward to more!

  9. So will this be a book? I hope so! Very enjoyable – I shall be first in line to acquire the whole story…….

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