Circle of Survival

Posted: November 29, 2009 in Sunday Funday
Tags: , , , ,

Circle of Survival

Its pincers slice through the air, coming up to tear out a piece of my leg. I move backwards, stepping around it.
The dance of death.
I rush around, trying to outmanoeuvre it. The Skorupi scuttles into my way, lightening fast, blocking my access to the prone figure of Dawn.
The dance of death.
It snaps the air in front of it, warning me that another rush will cost me a chunk of flesh. My arm feels heavy, the fingers unresponsive.
The dance of death.
I look around for a weapon. There are no sticks lying on the ground, nothing I can use at a distance. The Skorupi rears up its tail again for one more sting.
The dance of death.
It lunges in towards me again, the stinger poised for attack. I jump up, the stinger driving into the dirt below. I land back down on the Skorupi’s tail.
The dance of death.
It snaps under my feet and the Skorupi begins to scream loudly. I keep one foot on top of its broken tail and stamp the other one down on its head.
The dance of death.
The pincers reach up to slice through my leg but I move my feet and stamp down hard on its arms. I can hear bones snap and muscles tear and its hideous black goo leaks out of its torn skin.
The dance of death.
It raises is smashed face towards me, one half crushed in beneath its thickened shell. I bring my foot down hard onto its other half. The shell cracks and crunches underneath my feet, the goo oozing out of every available crevice.
The dance of death.
The Skorupi falls to the ground. It looks up me one last time. I don’t know if it can even see me through its mangled face. It manages one final short, sharp laugh. It falls down on its face and moves no longer.
The dance of death.

I run over to Dawn and shake her with one working arm. The other hangs limply, feeling fat and bloated. I shake her again. Again. Nothing.
She murmurs.
I breathe a huge sigh of relief, whispering desperately into her ear, ‘Dawn, it’s me, wake up, wake up!’
Her eyes slowly open.
She screams.
I put a hand over her mouth to keep her quiet, realising that the first thing she woke up to is the sight of a mad man covered in mud and water and blood and sweat with his remaining clothing in tatters.
‘It’s okay, it’s me, you remember me?’
Recognition in her eyes. She nods.
‘Good, okay, I’m going to take my hand away now, but you have to be quiet, okay?’
Nods again.
I take my hand away from her mouth.
‘What the hell happened?’ The question burns through me as viciously as the look in her eyes.
I shake my head. ‘I’m not sure. The Pokémon around here… they’re killers, Dawn. They want us… and our Pokédexes.’
Remembering the Pokédex, I rush over to her torn and tattered backpack, sifting through the remains with my one working hand.
‘What happened to my bag?’
I show her the torn fragments. ‘They want the Pokédexes. I’m not sure why, but they’re hunting us down. You, me and Rival.’
‘Why?’
I shake my head.
The bushes rustle. Loud, pounding footsteps getting nearer.
‘Lie down! Quick!’ I whisper to her. ‘Pretend you’re still out cold.’
She nods, terrified, and falls back on the ground where she was. I spot a small clearing in a bush and climb into it, the mud making me practically invisible.
The hide of the Kangaskhan crashes through the bushes, sniffing the air, looking around at the scene. I know it heard her scream, maybe even the Skorupi too.
It spots the ruined carcass of the Skorupi and growls.
It walks nears Dawn, still not seeing me, the baby still fast asleep in its pouch.
I look around for something, anything.
A small rock.
That’ll do.
It sniffs the hair of Dawn. Can she stay still?
The Kangaskhan sniffs the air around Dawn’s head. It strokes her hair, ever so gently.
Her foot twitches.
The Kangaskhan smells something in the air.
Something in my direction.
The colossal beast begins lumbering towards me.
I hide, lost in the shadows of leaves and bushes.
It stops so close to me I can touch it if I reach out.
I balance the rock between my finger and thumb.
I flick the rock off into the bushes.
The Kangaskhan hears, snaps its head in that direction.
I reach out while it’s not looking.
Grab the hand of the sleeping child.
Pull it out of the pouch.
The baby cries. The Kangaskhan snaps back around, roaring in rage. I hold the baby close to me, trying to look threatening.
The Kangaskhan rears back, readying a charge.
‘STOP!’
The beast and I turn to see Dawn standing, doing her best to look intimidating.
‘We have your baby! Don’t you fucking move!’ She’s screaming and I’m hoping against hope that there aren’t many more monsters waiting out there in the darkness.
The Kangaskhan never takes its eyes off me as it steps backwards.
I walk out of the bushes, carrying the tiny screaming baby.
The powerful arm of the Kangaskhan twitches slightly and for a moment I can visualise it punching straight through my skull. But it dare not hurt its child, so the movement is just a twitch.
‘We’re going to walk out of here. And you’re going to let us, understand?’ I wonder if whatever knock on the head she took has just pissed her off because she looks like she’s going to kill something and the Pokémon glaring at us seems to think she could too, for it nods slowly.
‘I want my Pokédex, too!’ She balls her hands into fists at the thought of her personal possessions being ripped through and torn apart.
The Kangaskhan growls and raises a massive fist in protest. I pull the crying baby closer to me, hoping I look like I could kill it, not like I’m about to pass out from holding a heavy fat bastard baby with only one working hand.
‘The Pokédex!’
The Kangaskhan relents and barks three times into the night sky.
Silence. The seconds feel like hours. I can feel the sweat running down my head, mud slowly dripping down my face. I arm is going numb holding this fucking baby. My other arm hangs like a dead weight.
A rustle in the bushes.
The Quagsire steps out, holding the Pokédex in its wobbling blue flippers.
The Kangaskhan growls at it, nodding at Dawn and myself. I step over to Dawn.
The Quagsire looks at the Pokédex in its hand and over to us.
It growls back at the Kangaskhan, apparently disagreeing with the-
The Kangaskhan’s massive fists swing down at the Quagsire’s head and with a soft ‘pop’ its head is gone and that black gunk covers the ground like an exploded water balloon.
The carcass falls to the ground.
The Kangaskhan gently picks up the Pokédex and holds it out to us. It throws it on the ground in front of us.
Dawn snaps it up and pockets it.
‘We give you the baby, we walk right out of here, got it?’ Dawn shoots the Kangaskhan a look that could kill.
The Pokémon nods slowly, eyes on the baby.
I walk forward a few feet and gently place the baby on the ground. I quickly dart back to Dawn, waiting to be crushed to the floor and stamped on.
It doesn’t come.
Dawn looks at me, fire blazing in her eyes. ‘RUN!’
We start back through the swamp, pushing past leaves and bushes and running as fast as the water will allow us to.
I risk a look back over my shoulder.
The Kangaskhan whimpers softly, cradling the weeping baby in its arms. A mother and her child.

We emerge from the marshlands in the cold grey light of the sun’s slow ascent.
‘Where do we go?’ Dawn asks me.
I open my mouth to reply but only drool and gurgling sounds come out.
I fall to the ground in the ruined city of Pastoria.
I can hear Dawn’s voice, so far away.
I’m lifted up.
I’m-

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