Buck Rogers in the 26th Century
"Red Skies"
Written by: Erin Weinstock
Novelization by: Anthony B.

I don't hold any of the copyrights in this story, and this story was made without profit.


Parked before the Aries Shuttle Port Station, which was a checkpoint for shuttles, was a large transport spaceship that looked very old. It had all the charm of an old cargo train head with larger windows in its front, and wings for flight. Coming out of this ship in a straight line, all straight standing, were a stream of Red Bots. At the front of the Red Bots stood a man dealing with the checkpoint security men and woman.

"Why? Why not?" The transporter of the Red Bots asked the security guards. "I have an order for them HERE in Ariestes City; they're to provide help in the building of..."

"You must be mistaken sir," one of the security men said diplomatically. "Maybe for Galileo City, not this one."

"I have the order, the papers on my ship! I can get them for you, proof I'm not lying," the transporter pleaded.

"If you go back on board that ship, you're going to back on board with your ambuquads," the second security man said. "And you're not coming back to this city, this planet, till they're no longer in your presence."

The transporter looked to the female checkpoint officer, dumbfounded. "It's the law," she said.

The transporter shook his head, his gaze cast downwards. "I don't believe this." He then turned to face the Red Bots. "Sorry boys, this town ain't welcoming us here."

"We'll be tracking your ship's ID till it leaves the atmosphere," the security woman said.

The transporter looked over his shoulder. "Only until I leave the atmosphere?"

"Your ID will be kept on record and your ship will be searched the next time it returns to Mars," the security woman clarified.

Looking back to the Red Bots, the transporter closed his eyes in pain. "Darn it," he whispered. "Everyone back in!" he said, motioning his words by waving a hand towards the ship.

The security staff stood back to watch the Red Bots and their transporter go into the ship.

"Every other week," the security woman complained.

"They never learn," the first security man said.

"But it gives us our jobs," the second security man replied.

"Maybe your guys' jobs, but not soon to me," the first security man boasted. The other two security staff turned to look at him, wondering what he was talking about. He just smiled at both of them, and then looked back towards the ship. "They're back in." He then started walking away from them, and the ship, towards a bench nearing the edge of the Shuttle Port. "I'll explain," he said, motioning for his friends to follow.

The security officer sat on the bench facing the Shuttle Port Station, and his co-workers joined him. "Your pay is good, you have benefits, you have us," the second security man said.

"But I have Martian pride as well," the man said as he hit his chest.

The security woman held her head. "Oh no, not you too."

"IT'S DANGEROUS!" the other security man yelled to his friend.

"It's our legacy to the universe," the first security man argued.

"You have family here," the security woman countered. "What do they think about you going off and braving the unknown with equipment that's over a hundred years old?"

"They know, and they are with me on this," the security man answered. "It's Duer's fifth moon. That's not unknown, we know where that is. And it's not old equipment, it's brand new."

"How much are they paying you to risk your neck in this?" the other man asked.

"Two thousand a month."

"That's... less than what you make now," the second security man stammered.

The security woman patted the first security man on his back. "We're with you on this."

The second security man motioned angrily. "No we're not. He's about to throw his life..."


The apartment buildings inside Ariestes City, and the accompanying landscape, looked like they were made around the turn of the millennium.

Inside the first security man's apartment, the security man passed a sensor that once he hit, began to start up a form of modern rock music. The man was heading towards the kitchen, which was just off to the side of his living room. As he walked, many projectors on the ceiling are trying their best to follow him, with a floating television screen following his movements to stay ahead of him.

"Channel Two," the television said. The floating screen then showed a view of a political meeting that was taking place. "We need better control of all shipments coming into us from elsewhere in the solar system!" a man from the meeting declared.

"Channel Three," the television then said as he changed channels. The floating screen now showed a children's show that had Humans and Aliens dressed up as large plush versions of themselves. They were dancing around an over-sized flower to the backdrop of a red sky set against bright orange hills. "We love this! We love that! We love this flower, and that's..."

"Channel Four," electronic voice said. The floating screen showed a space battle being broadcasted out the window of a space station, with a female reporter covering the whole event while she held a pen-sized microphone. "The Houten are at it again. But lucky for us, the Thorcomen Defense Administration came to the scene just in the nick of time, and it looks like we're being saved right now!"

"Channel Five." The floating screen showed an advertisement that depicted a man in his late forties or early fifties, and he looked like he wanted to brighten up the world with his smile, as he stood against the animated backdrop of a Martian flag, which looked like a large red dot with five differently colored dots standing behind it, half hidden, in which the final of which was yellow. From this yellow dot, half hidden, reaching outwards in the background were, in rings that started with a pale and nearly white pink to a deep red-orange on the flag's edges. "I want you. Yes, I want every true Martian or just true Martian at heart to sign up for..."

"Channel Six." The floating screen showed a soap opera taking place, using an all-alien cast speaking a language that couldn't be understood by the security officer. From the television, the alien's voices were chattering in extreme highs and lows.

The security man sat down in a chair with a small box of cereal. "Channel Five," he ordered.

The television switched the channel back to Channel Five. "As you wish," the television replied.

The security officer began to eat his cereal, while listening to the man on the television speak. "It is our way, there are no easy paths in life, believe me..." the man's smile widened. "I should know."


Chapter 1

"It's my greatest hope for the people of Mars; this new colony on Duer's fifth moon, once its foundation has been made, will be our second greatest achievement in this galaxy's history." The security man, still watching the man on the television, put his cereal on the counter. "Don't worry about where you'll be staying. I wouldn't strand you in the middle of nothingness. You'll get, if you join Mars in this endeavor, a stay at Duer's finest four star hotel for the duration of your work period." At this point, a knock broke the security man's attention of the television. "All the pleasures of normal life are granted too, even..."

"Mute, please," the man said to the television. Another knock hit the door, and the security man got up from his chair. "I'm coming." He then grabbed the doorknob of the door, and opened it. He neglected to unlock its chain, hooking it to the wall it's fixed into. A very cold-eyes woman was standing outside his apartment. "Yes?"

"Employee one-eight-nine dash nine-three-two of the Aries Shuttle Port Station staff, and also listed as employee forty of the Martian Special Construction Unit of Duer's fifth moon, J-eight?" the strange woman asked.

"I am, but you don't have to be so formal about tags," the security man said. "My non-work tags, my name is.." however, that was the last thing that he said. The woman quickly shot him with a small blaster, which killed him before he finished his sentence. Then, without a show of feeling for what she did, she closed the apartment door.


In the sky over Ariestes City, three Z-87s flew down into the cityscape below.

"They can't keep us up here forever, Colonel," Fox's said over the intercom of his Z-87. "We're going to have to land some time."

The three Z-87s continue to fly forward, sneaking in between buildings as they flew. "Come on Fox, this isn't so bad," Buck said. "How else could someone sight see at this speed?"

"Martian law is very strict about things like this, Fox. We can't land yet," Wilma explained.

The Z-87s now began to rise in elevation. "We could have gone to Pluto and back with what we're wasting here," Fox complained.

"This is ground control of base Alpha-Maris one. Troop leader response?" a commanding voice, Roxy, asked the ships from an intercom back on ground.

"Colonel Wilma Deering, ground control," Wilma responded.

The three Z-87s halted in mid-air at this point. "Colonel Deering, you and your troop have been given clearance to land on pad Beta, and you're to remain there until further notice."

"Understood, ground control," Wilma replied.

The three Z-87s then began to fly off to one side.


The complex looked to be many dome-shaped buildings that were cuddled up to the station like landing pads. This complex as a whole was like bubbles, half-formed and grouped together, among a plain of Martian landscape devoid of any other sight.

"This is Beath, right?" Wilma asked.


Roxy entered the Landing Pad Beat from the interior of the base, which was a wide entrance, in which the doors are so far back that Roxy could barely see her. Roxy had a business look to her, in a dress with a short-cut shirt, and looked almost around Buck and Wilma's ages.

"Welcome to Mars," Roxy said. Behind Buck, Wilma, and Fox, their Z-87s looked like they were parked in a quite half-assed manner. Only a couple of other small spaceships could be seen by them.

Wilma put out a hand for Roxy to shake. "It's nice to be here, although I wish we weren't here for the reason we are," Wilma said.

"We've lost thirty-six at this point. We need outside help," Roxy said as she shook Wilma's hand.

"You sound familiar," Wilma observed.

"Ground control. My name is Roxy."

"Nice to meet you, Roxy," Wilma replied.

"Same." Roxy looked at Fox, then at Buck, where her attention stayed. She then walked over to him. "Are you a general?"

"A captain," Buck corrected.

"I see," Roxy said to herself as she looked Buck up and down.

"We need to be presented with the details of the situation," Wilma said, noticing where Roxy's attention lay.

Roxy sighed. She then turned around, and walked back towards the entrance, to the interior. "Follow me."

As they began to follow Roxy, Fox looked to Buck, and gave him a look that meant "you've got it." Buck grinned back, until Wilma took notice of the two men, in which she glared at them.


The four were in a hallway that led to Bart's office. Its floor was a pale marble and walls were white, moving up to a wooden divider that, before the next wooden divider is reached, had painting running into each other, giving the place an odd look of culture. After the second wooden divider was whiter. Roxy was in the lead of Wilma, who was followed by Buck and Fox.

"It's been hard day's night, and I've been working like a dog!" Bart sang as the four approached a Phasoft-door that led to his office.

"What is that?" Wilma asked.

Buck smiled, and began to sing along with Bar. "But it's worth it just to hear you say, you're going to give me everything."

"The Beatles," Fox said to Wilma.

"Insects?" she asked, confused.

Roxy hit the access panel at the door.

Inside, Bart's office was decorated with old-time pictures, a Martian flag that hung behind his desk and off to one side was a pirate flag with two long swords that hung under it. Bart's feet were propped up on his desk as the quartet walked into the office. Buck was still enjoying the duet, which now surprised Bart, and seeing another singing, he began to enjoy the duet too. "But when I get you alone!"

Bart breaks out into laughter. "Who are you, and where did you find that disk?" Bar asked as he got up and leaned towards Buck.

"I used to hear the Beatles on the radio, and my mom had a few of their records," Buck answered.

"Radio? Records?" Bart asked, confused by the references.

"Before your time," Buck said sheepishly.

"You're younger than me," Bart said.

"Make a bet?" Buck asked.

"We're the team sent here from Earth's Defense Directorate," Wilma said to Bart.

"Then you must be Colonel Deering," Bart said.

"That's right, sir," Wilma replied.

"And the rest of your troop. Who are they?"

Wilma turned to the right, where the two men were standing. "Hieronymous Fox and Buck Rogers."

Bart looked to be in control of the room at this point. "I now know from meeting in a duet who Buck Rogers is." Bart then looked towards Fox. "Hieronymous Fox, YOU and the rest of the troop could be heard here talking in your fighters."

Fox looked ashamed. Bart then walked over to Fox, looking very serious, and making the others wonder rather he was angry or not. Catching Fox off guard, Bart then put a hand on one of Fox's shoulders. "I run this place; take as much water as you want to compensate," Bart smiled.

Fox stared at Bart, not sure of what to say. Bart walked back towards his desk, emitting a single laugh.

"Have the deaths all been occurring close together or over months or years?" Wilma asked,

"Within the last few months, shortly after recruiting began," Bart replied.

"Is the rumor true you don't know who's behind the deaths?"

Bart made a "cross my heart and hope to die" gesture across his chest. "I swear to my grandmommy."

Wilma then took on an air that looked she was ready to fight. "Black Bart."

"That's behind me," Bart said.

"Black Bart?" Buck asked.

"Pirate," Wilma said, drawing out the word.

"Former pirate," Bart corrected.

"And elected president," Wilma countered.

"Earth affairs and Martian affairs don't normally mix, Colonel," Bart replied.

"You're still from Earth," Wilma said.

"No, not really," Bart replied.

"I think we should leave the room now," Fox whispered to Buck.

Both Buck and Fox started to move, but Roxy took hold of them. "You're not going anywhere," she whispered to them.

At the same time, Buck and Fox looked towards Wilma and Bart. From the expressions on their faces, it was obvious that they didn't want to be where they currently were.


Chapter 2

"Colonel, I really don't like when people dig up things not considering the moment, not considering of the matter. I had nothing to do with those deaths; my concern is the new colony, the pride of Mars. If you have an issue with my past, I can always ask you to leave and bring in others to replace you and your troop," Bart warned Wilma.

Buck tried as best as he could to get between Wilma and Bart. "Pride of the Defense Directorate, Wilma."

Wilma then backed off some. "Thank you Rogers," Bart replied. "Um, can I call you Buck?"

"You can call me Buck."

"Then refer to me as Bart or Barney, but never Black Bart." Bart said, as Buck went back to where he was standing before, while Wilma straightened to attention. "I don't want this matter going public. With the deaths or getting help from Earth, understood?"

"Understood," Wilma complied.

"A pirate..." Buck said in wonder.

"That's a surprise to you?" Bart asked.

"Someone with a criminal background having a high political office? That does shock me, just in this day and age though, not for years ago," Buck explained.

"Does it bother you?" Bart asked.

"No," Buck answered.

"Good, cause that's where things like that song you heard came from."

"How so?" Buck asked with interest.

"I raided a cargo ship bound for Tierick's Central Archive Library back in twenty-four-ninety-nine. Got a lot of nice stuff from it."

"Any old enemies you think might be behind this?" Wilma asked.

"I don't have any old enemies," Bart grinned.

"Are there any profiles available to help us for the killer or killers?" Wilma asked.

"If there are, the police in Borguida and Ariestes City haven't notified me of any," Bart answered.

"Which city has the higher rate of death?" Wilma asked.


At the underbelly of a Z-87, two men were in the darkness of the ship's shadow. A man's hand gently placed a domed device on the ship. Through a clear casing, a complex machine that faintly resembled the internals of the mobile Doctor Theopolis was being attached. Its tightly bunched body blinked mildly before touching the Z-87. Although now on the Z-87, it blinked madly, and the tightly bunched body began to squirm.

"How long?" asked Rob to his partner.

"At the max, twenty-four hours. It all depends on how tough these Defense Directorate guys really are."


The group, minus Bart, was now back at the landing pad. Buck, Wilma, and Fox were in their Z-87s, but Buck had the canopy on his up, due to Roxy leaning on its edge.

"You don't have to leave with them, do you? I've never been to Earth before, and I bet you could teach me a thing or two about it," Roxy said.

"When this is over I'll teach you about Earth, but I have to leave with them now for Ariestes," Buck answered.

"Too many of you fighters together might look bad for why you're here," Roxy observed. "You could just..."

"This isn't a wise thing you're doing here," Buck interrupted.

"What isn't?" Roxy asked.

"My girlfriend is riding shotgun in a ship with a massive blaster in it, and you're within earshot of her," Buck said.

Roxy backed away from Buck's ship. "I'm backing off, I'm backing off."


Two people, one man and one woman, were watching three Z-87s fly over the base of Alpha-Maris, both dressed in black uniforms.

"Earth's Defense Directorate?" the man asked.

"I bet they won't tell us why they're here," the woman complained.

The man then turned to his female partner. "Those murders, the ones to the Martian Special Construction Unit."

They then looked at the underside of one of the Z-87s, where the dome machine was placed on the ship. Something was worming out of the tightly bunched body, twisting around with lights going off. Finally, a firefly-like robot broke its way free of the domed machine. The insect then zipped through the opening of the door that led to the interior of the building, as the man and woman went inside.

"Hurray for the government's confidence in us," the woman said.


As cops around the police station stared, Buck, Wilma, and Fox were led into a shut-off office away from the main floor of the room, by an officer that looked to be of higher ranking than the two seen on the roof.

"For as long as you're here, you're back here," the lead cop ordered as he pushed the trio."

"My, this is a friendly place," Buck said to Wilma.

The lead cop opened the door to his office for the trio to go through. "This station and I will be as friendly to you as we have to be. We like to think we're good at our own jobs," the lead cop said.

"We never said you weren't good at your jobs," Fox pointed out.

The lead cops’ body language indicated that he wanted them to move in the office. "Inside, now!"

The three went in, and Buck shut the normal door that served as an entrance to this place. Wilma was turning on a twenty-sixth century style desktop computer, and sitting down in a chair at it, while Fox stood off to the side of the two of them.

Buck looked towards the door. "I have the feeling I'm missing something here that either I haven't been told or I've forgotten."

Wilma was busy accessing information on the computer, but looked towards Buck. "About what?'

"About how we're being treated. I have the feeling it doesn't really have to do with us working for the Defense Directorate entirely," Buck observed.

Wilma gave a huff of a laugh, and returned working on the computer.

"Do you want to hear the fully deal why?" Fox asked.

"Never hurt a situation before," Buck answered.

"Hundreds of years ago, when Earth began looking to the stars for its new hope, about thirty percent of the population aware of us colonizing the moon starting with a full ambuquad workforce, didn't like the idea of no manpower behind it," Fox explained. "And right after the first atmospheric generator tested OK, the third one built was sent here to Mars. No ambuquads, only men and women with the bare bones of what they needed for building a colony were sent here. They were the thirty percent that didn't want help provided by ambuquads. These Martians believe the harder route is the better route to doing things right. That's why they look down on us. They think we think we're higher than them."

"That's why I told you not to bring Twiki," Wilma added.

"But they're using technology," Buck countered.

"They only have issue with robotic help," Fox clarified.

The lights in the room dimmed, and then brightened again. "Wonderful Martian technology," Wilma complained to herself. Now, the computer she was working on shuts off. Wilma, quite flustered, crossed her arms and bean once more talking to herself. "Ten, nine, eight, seven, six, five..."

Wilma's counting had now drawn Buck's and Fox's attention. "Brown out?" Fox asked.

"Four, three," Wilma continued.

"One hell of a time for it to happen," Buck sighed.

"Two, one..." Wilma continued. Wilma then stared at the computer, looking shocked before rolling her eyes and giving it a good slap. The computer turned back on, and began booting up again. "I love Mars."

"I take it you've been here before," Buck assumed.

"Years ago," Wilma said, her tone aggressive.

All the power then went out, the computer, the lights. People outside the office could be heard talking about it.

"Is the power out everywhere?" a female cop asked.

"It better not be on the jail floor," a male cop threatened.

"Do you think its city wide," a second male cop asked?

"I'm going to hook up the generator," a second female cop said.

"Both of you might need blasters," warned a third female cop.

The trio looked back at each other after listening on to the various conversations taking place outside.

"No force fields," Fox observed.

Buck pulled out his blaster for Wilma and Fox to see. "But we're prepared." He then opened the door to the office, looking ready to move out.


Chapter 3

Most of police that were heard disappeared from the all, while the ones remaining on the floor had a look of readiness to them for anything.

"Get back in there; we're having a situation out here," the lead cop ordered as Buck, Wilma and Fox were leaving the office.

"We know you have a situation out here! That's why we're out here!" Buck answered.

"We can handle this; we don't need your help!" the first male cop responded.

"Take that up with your government. Don’t' argue with us!" Wilma said harshly. Both Fox and Buck looked towards each other in reaction to Wilma's attitude. "What are you two complaining about!" Wilma snapped at her allies.

"Nothing, nothing Wilma," Buck said timidly and fearfully.

"The Defense Directorate grunts are here to help, nobody argue that point," the lead cop agreed.

Fox moved to the nearest cop to him. "The inmates being held here. How many of them should we be worried about?"

"We have only eight here that are really dangerous, the rest are only here for things like theft and DWI," the second cop answered Fox.

"What floor has the jail cells?" Fox asked, as Buck began to walk away from the group.

"You get right back here, Buck!" Wilma ordered.

Buck, with a melancholy look, moved back to Wilma. "Is this normal with you guys?" the cop asked Fox.

"Ever since she first informed us we were coming here," Fox answered. "She's normally quite pleasant, even in battle.'

"The basement," the cop said to Fox.

"What?" Fox asked, confused.

"That's where the jail cells are located," the cop informed Fox.

"Thanks," Fox said.


Down in the basement, the area was very dark, with a jail cell being surrounded by a force field, which was currently gone. A man that looked like a bum was sleeping. However, the distant movement of the situation woke him up. He was startled at first, but after slowly looking around, he noticed the lack of a force field on his cell. He got up from where he was, and peered out from his cell to see what's been causing the noise. It was another man out of his cell. At first he was a good distance away from the Bum, after noticing him, he moves towards him.

"Do you have a blaster," the escapee asked the bum in a strong whisper. The bum simply shook his head. The escapee then walked across the front of the cells, and asked in a stronger tone. "Do any of you have a weapon?"

"If I had, you wouldn't get it," a woman's voice yelled from one of the cells.

"You shut up!" the escapee said, turning his attention back to the bum. "And you get back inside your cell!"

Stumbling to obey the command quickly, the bum moved back into his cell and crashes on to the floor. The firefly-like robot zipped past the front of his cell, and the Bum's eyes went wide with shock.

"Intruder! We have an intruder in here!" the bum shouted.

A thump could be heard, followed by a whine of pain from the escapee."

"Hurray, you killed a bug," the inmate woman said sarcastically.

"I'm getting out of here," the escapee growled. "Can't believe none of you want out."

"We have common sense that the cops are right outside waiting for us!" another inmate's voice yelled.

"Then rot till Doomsday!" the escapee shouted, walking in a fast pace past the bum's cell.

"Only till next Thursday on me," the woman said.

"Shut up!" the escapee ordered.


The stairwell looked like the kind of place that was closed off room the rest of the Police Station. Sets of stairs winded back and forth, with only an open gap of a yard between them and for air and room, every other set of stairs connected with a floor by a platform and door leading to the further interior of the level. Buck peered down the stairwell.

"All clear," he reported, before turning his head away from the opening.

"Are you sure? I mean, I can barely see a thing," Fox said to his friends.

"One or two of the inmates could be on part of the stairwell we don't see. But if not, yah, we're in the clear," Buck said.

"How about you stay behind us," Wilma suggested to Fox.

"I'm sure that I could handle the danger if it arose. I'll be fine with being in fro..." Fox stuttered.

"Behind Buck and I," Wilma ordered.

Before he moved behind Buck and Wilma, Fox opened his mouth to say something, but decided against it. Wilma then got in the lead, readied her blaster, and moved down the stairs at a normal pace.


Inside the Basement Buffer Room, the escapee was about to reach for the doorknob, when he detected sound. He pressed his ear against the door, and listened with a look of deep thought on his face. The escapee then took hold of the doorknob, and looked around himself in the near darkness of the small room. The room was being used as a weapons and technology checkpoint, where a cop would normally rid an inmate of bad belongings. But to the dismay of the escapee, there was nothing that he could use. Carefully, hugging the wall, he opened the door at a crack just big enough for him, and slipped out of the room to the stairwell beyond.

Inside the bottom floor of the stairwell now, the escapee broke away gently from hugging the wall. Balling a fist, his attention directed upwards, he began to ascend up the stairs softly.

Meanwhile, Wilma, Buck, and Fox, were continuing their journey down the stairs. Buck gently put a hand on one of Wilma's shoulders. In a snap, Wilma turned her gun on Buck's interaction, but realizing who she's pointing her blaster at, she relaxed a bit.

"Don't touch, not now," Wilma ordered.

"We need to talk, I think it's important," Buck said firmly.

"Not now," Wilma replied.

"Yes, now," Buck said.

"Why is it important?" Wilma asked.

"Wilma, I'm worried about you," Buck said caringly.

"Me too," Fox added.

"You've been angry ever since you heard we were coming here," Buck explained. "More so since meeting with Bart. Please, before you blow off the head of an inmate, tell us what's wrong. Maybe we can fix it."

Wilma cast her eyes down. "I don't want to be here."

"Well, that much is obvious. Now tell us why," Buck said.

"I've encountered Black Bart before. Not face to face, but he's caused me to have a brushed record," Wilma answered.

"In regards to what?" Buck asked.

At this point, the escapee was still making his way up the stairs, listening to the trio's echoing voices.

"The first mission I ever flew on was to stop him and his gang at the time from completing a heist," Wilma began. "After a major battle, and more lives lost to the Defense Directorate than his band of thieves, we lost."

"So you dislike Mars because he's become its ruler?" Fox asked.

"It's more than that. It's because... it's because of that but I voted against him."

"I thought Earth and Mars didn't connect on things like voting," Buck said.

At this point, the escapee was really taking the conversation in.

"That's part of my point. I went to this planet to vote against him, but was turned away from the booth after the volunteers saw the data file on me," Wilma continued. "He won, he won even with being public knowledge he's a rat!"

"I understand this is an upsetting position to be in, but we don't have to interact with him, now that's over," Buck said.

"I know, I know, but the fact people like him are respected here," Wilma sighed.

The escapee then came into view, and the trio each drew their blasters on him. "Our fists, please! I'm unarmed," he assured them.

"Are there any others?" Wilma asked.

"No, but I still think that you should get out of my way," the escapee said.

"We won't," Buck said. "But we will escort you to the cops upstairs."

"Rats, they were right," the escapee said, looking towards the cells. "Rats, rats.”I don't like the President either, we agree on that. Maybe we can also agree you guys never encountered me, eh?"

"We'll escort you upstairs to the cops," Buck said, annoyed.

"Rats." Wilma moved the escapee between them, with Wilma in the rear, the escapee in the middle, and Buck and Fox in the lead. "It's something you didn't know I was alone with that little anbe-bug you sent downstairs to spy on the prison."

"Anbe-bug?" Buck asked the man.


Chapter 4

Back at the Police Station, the escapee was sitting in a corner with bent legs, arms crossing the legs, and not looking in the best of moods.

"What did it look like?" the lead cop asked.

"Ask the Terrans," the escapee said. "Even though they denied knowing of it, they're the only ones that could have known it."

The lead cop and the trio, had the escapee surrounded, with one officer pointing a stun-like gun at where the escapee is sitting. The lead cop, along with four others, turn to give an expecting look towards Buck, Wilma, and Fox.

Wilma, about to speak, was cut off by Buck, who could tell she was angry. "We may be from Earth, they are legal back home, but we had nothing to do with it, honestly."

"Then you'd know best what type of quad it was," the lead cop said.

"Like a metal lightning..." the escapee began to answer, but was cut off by the lights turning back on in the room.”Bug."

"And that's what caused our little blackout," the second female cop observed.

"How?" the lead cop asked as he moved towards the female cop, who was holding out one balled fist for him to see.

She then unballed her fist, and the hand holding snippets of finely cut wire and metal. "Human or alien, this can't be the work of any organic being. These were found near the power base."

Buck tried to get a closer look at what the cop was holding, but the lead officer diverted his attention. "Is this any of your business?" he said to Buck.

Buck backed away a little. "If you'd like us to help find out the why to this, it is."

"Earth's Defense Directorate isn't needed for this matter," the lead cop stated. "Before the blackout, did you find the information you needed on the deaths in our network files?"

"It gave not much more than what was transmitted to us before we came here," Wilma explained. "It only added in better detail how the bodies were found."

"Then you have no more use of this place," the lead cop said. "PLEASE tell that to the president."


Back at the shuttle park of the police station, many of the firefly-like robots were using pinpoint-sized blasters, damaging the Defense Directorate Z-87s, making a buzzing noise all along like loud bees. In a nipping fashion, they worked away at the ships.

Then came a robot that looked like a dragonfly from hell with eyes cut like a snake's sticking out to either side of its head, a foot in length with wings that look a size too big for its body. The robot snapped and ripped at the hull, and the guts of the ships with a set of pincers moving out to two inches in length. Electricity flares from its mouth. This was the same thing that happened in the dome, they robots were tightly bunched and moving.

"Then again, our matter could be your matter too," the female cop said as she, Buck, Wilma, and Fox were watching the destruction of their ships.

Buck turned to the female cop, giving an over-joyful, sarcastic response. "Yuh think?"

"Someone wants us out of the way, and they're willing to destroy our ships to do it," Fox said.

"And possibly dead," Buck stated.

"Why do you say that?" Wilma asked Buck.

"Whoever sent these after you might have suspected this station was filled with people more treacherous than they really are," the female cop explained. "That the criminals would take care of you once out of their cells."

"They wanted us out of the way, but not by our mystery killer," Wilma said. "Hell on this day, I'm taking them out." At this, Wilma started reaching for her blaster.

"Wilma, we don't even know why yet. You're jumping the gun," Buck said as Wilma upholstered her blaster.

Wilma aimed outwards with her blaster. "Not our would-be assassins. Our little pests..." Now, she used the blaster like a sledge hammer to kill the flies. She blaster fires took out the robotic bugs, even the dragonfly one. "Our ships are already damaged; I don't want our little gremlins doing any more damage elsewhere."

"You might not get a warm welcome back inside, but you need to get in," the female cop said. "Make a transmission to the government about this, and needed new ships."

They began to turn around and go back inside the building. However, Buck hearing a loud buzzing noise, turned around and looked back at the damaged ships. At this, one of the dragonfly bots that was missed by Wilma, made its presence known. Then, in a bolt of an action, in a flying leap, pincers open and flaring with life, it lunged towards Buck.



Return to Earth